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This is Film! #5 Silent Cinema

Public lecture series devoted to notable projects in the fields of film restoration and film heritage, varying from found footage documentary films to the restoration and presentation of 70mm Hollywood classics. EYE has invited Elżbieta Wysocka (National Film Archive in Warsaw), to present the recent restoration of Bestia/The Polish Dancer by Aleksander Hertz (1917).

Polish dancer bestia still

Each session will cover a different topic and feature an introductory lecture by Giovanna Fossati (Chief Curator at EYE and Professor of Film Heritage at the UvA), followed by an extended Q&A with an invited (inter)national expert on the theme and a film screening.

The fifth lecture of the series will be dedicated to the challenges of restoring and presenting silent cinema. EYE has invited Elżbieta Wysocka, Head of Film Restoration and Digital Repository at FINA, the National Film Archive in Warsaw, to discuss and present the recent restoration of Bestia/The Polish Dancer by Aleksander Hertz (1917). The Polish Dancer is currently the oldest surviving production starring Pola Negri and the only record of the great actress from her early Polish period. The Polish Dancer was one of four films starring Negri produced by Sfinks, the biggest Polish studio at the time. The film is part of the collections of National Archive Filmoteka Narodowa and was digitally restored in 4K in 2017 by DI Factory and ReKino Studios under the supervision of Filmoteka Narodowa. The film could only be partly repaired due to its unfavourable history, which will be addressed in the lecture.

The drama of The Polish Dancer revolves around a love triangle. The main character is Pola, a young girl from a small village who decides to run away to Warsaw after an argument with her parents, leaving her jealous lover Dmitri behind. Pola quickly becomes popular in the capital city. The screening of the film will be accompanied by Martin de Ruiter on piano.

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This is Film! 2018

Eye and the University of Amsterdam will present This is Film! Film Heritage in Practice, a series of six public lectures devoted to notable projects in the fields of film restoration and film heritage, varying from found footage documentary films to the restoration and presentation of 70mm Hollywood classics.

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