Tonight I attended the Toronto Silent Film Festival screening of Faust. Not only was it a lesson in film history, it was also a lesson in why I don’t sit in churches very often. Which is too bad, because had this been shown in a proper theatre it would have been easier to focus on the movie rather than my rapidly numbing ass.
Sore body parts aside though, I have a lot to like about the experience.
Firstly the movie itself. It really is an amazing feat for 1926. The special effects are countless and the performance of the devil is really quite delightful.
Secondly the music. Wow. Robert Bruce scored and performed the piece for the entire two hour running time, never faltering once. It was quite beautiful and haunting. Perfectly suited for the film.
And most importantly the atmosphere was amazing. My friend John pointed out that you never once heard a candy wrapper open, a straw slurp or popcorn crunch. Nobody checked their Blackberry and if you squinted enough you could block out the glowing EXIT signs. For a few moments I felt as though I was watching the travelling picture show.
My take-away is this: next year I’m either going to a screening in a theatre or bringing one big-ass pillow with me.