May 16: Dorothy Davenport’s Linda with Live Accompaniment from Jay Warren – 35mm Archival Print

The Auditorium at Northeastern Illinois University – Building E, 3701 W. Bryn Mawr Ave
General Admission: $5 • NEIU Students: $2

Tuesday, May 16 @ 7:30 PM
Directed by Dorothy Davenport • 1929
With live organ accompaniment from Jay Warren!
When her husband Wallace Reid, “the world’s most perfect lover,” died in a sanitarium from complications related to his morphine addiction, actress Dorothy Davenport began producing what were essentially exploitation films, beginning with the now-lost 1923 anti drug feature Human Wreckage, the first in a planned “Sins of the World” series co-produced by Thomas Ince. Linda, her last silent picture and second for her independent production company, is more of a straightforward melodrama, but Davenport’s roots as a low-budget filmmaker make it all the more immediate and effective—it’s Human Wreckage without the drugs. Helen Foster is forced to marry an old lumber dealer (Noah Beery) by her evil father. Beery isn’t such a bad guy, it turns out, but Foster eventually flees to the city and falls in love with kindly doctor Warner Baxter. Originally distributed through a decentralized “states rights” system that almost guaranteed Linda would be left unscreened in the decades to come, Davenport’s film has been newly preserved by the Library of Congress. You’d be forgiven for not being familiar with this one, especially since the only post-1929 reviews so far are tweets from last year’s Capitolfest in Rome, New York. We trust @NitrateDiva, who calls Linda “a lyrical, outstanding melodrama ripe for rediscovery!” (JA)
75 min • Mrs. Wallace Reid Productions • 35mm from the Library of Congress
Preceded by: Laurel and Hardy in “The Finishing Touch” (Clyde Bruckman, Leo McCarey, 1928) – 35mm from Library of Congress – 19 min

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