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Palace of Silents2010

The Silent Movie Theater of Los Angeles

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  • 4.0
On Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles there is a one hundred and fifty seat movie theater that for over sixty-eight years has doggedly dedicated itself to the exhibition of silent films. Built in 1942 by maverick film preservationist and collector John Hampton, the theater championed silent film at the very moment when the Hollywood studios across town were busily destroying their nitrate inventories. With hard chairs, phonograph-record accompaniments, and mostly original vintage prints, the dingy mom-and-pop operation was nonetheless a palace to the fanatical few who became its loyal audience. Through the theater's tumultuous years of operation, its owners and employees have struggled to keep a cherished art form alive, often paying a heavy price in the personal tragedies that have stemmed from this struggle: obscurity, financial ruin and even murder. Through interviews, archival footage and detailed research, PALACE OF SILENTS reveals the touching, twisted, and bloody history of one independent theater's successful attempt to stubbornly buck every cinematic trend in the hometown of American cinema.

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1 member likes this review

A fascinating look at a silent picture movie-house, its owners, and intrigue. Highly recommended for folks who like history and murder most foul.

Member Reviews (3)

A fascinating look at a silent picture movie-house, its owners, and intrigue. Highly recommended for folks who like history and murder most foul.

1 member likes this review
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top reviewer

very interesting have loved silent films for 30 years did not know owner of movie house had been killed hope they keep playing silent films so the younger people can see a great art form and some great movies with the best actors and actress that ever lived

As I assume most of us who subscribe to Fandor are obsessed with film - this may be the perfect film for us. Highly recommended for all fans of film not just the silent variety.