Shooting Stars


Action / Drama / Western


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March 28, 2016 at 04:25 AM


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746.57 MB
18 fps
1hr 20 min
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1.54 GB
18 fps
1hr 20 min
P/S 3 / 6

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by writers_reign 8 / 10

Set Piece

Despite the fact that they are two of my favourite directors I wouldn't, until now, have thought Puffin Asquith and Billy Wilder had too much in common but after watching Shooting Stars it appears that Puffin nailed the concept of beginning a film as a comedy and then seamlessly seguing into near tragedy some 30 years before Wilder's masterpiece The Apartment. Apart from Asquith only three names connected to Shooting Stars mean anything today and even that isn't much. Co-lead Brian Aherne went on to become a sort of poor mans' George Brent, the perennial charmer who knew how to wear a lounge suit and shoot his cuffs, Wally Patch, who lent rough-edged working-class support to dozens of films and Chilli Bouchier, who enjoyed a mayfly moment of fame in the early thirties and then disappeared gracefully. The film itself, our old friend the Eternal Triangle, which even in 1928 was in possession of a Bus Pass, benefits from some sure-footed direction from Puffin albeit uncredited and slips in some tasty satire between clichés. For 1928 it wears well and is well worth a look.

Reviewed by drednm 10 / 10

Whatever Happened to Annette Benson?

Superb silent film that offers a "backstage" look at filmmaking in Britain at the end of the silent era. Story centers on a married couple who are starring in "Prairie Love." He (Brian Aherne) is a rather dopey leading man who is totally unaware of his wife's (Annette Benson) bitchy temperament or her affair with a low-comic movie star (Donald Calthrop).

When Aherne is scheduled for some on-location filming, Benson wastes no time to giving Calthrop her apartment key. But the shooting schedule is changed. When a stunt double is killed on another on-location shoot, Benson assumes her lover is dead, but....

After Benson (as Mae Feather) finally gets her comeuppance and loses her contract to go to Hollywood, there's a powerful and bittersweet ending with Benson as a lowly extra and Aherne as a powerful director.

Filled with astonishing lighting and camera work and boasting excellent performance by Benson and Aherne, this film gets progressively mesmeric as it spins its story. Co-stars include Chili Bouchier as Winnie and Wally Patch as the prop man.

In a bizarre parallel to this film's ending, Annette Benson would herself disappear after two failed attempts at talkies in 1931. There is virtually no biographical information available on this star actress.

BFI recently issued a BLU/DVD restoration of this superb film.

Reviewed by DanielKing 7 / 10

Try it, even if you don't like silents

This was the first full-length silent film I saw and I must say it took me quite by surprise. For a start it does not feel like it was made almost eighty years ago. The technical staff of the 'film-within-a-film' would not look out of place in the '40s and '50s. The leading players are rather heavily made up with the lips in particular looking rather odd, especially on the male characters. Brian Aherne looks almost contemporary but one could that down to his classical good looks (he is rather reminiscent of Matthew McConnaughey). The acting, too, was a surprise. Being a silent film you have to expect a certain amount of gesturing with the hands to make up for the lack of dialogue; the actors must have some means of expression. In close-ups, however, the acting is good. When Julian discovers his wife's adultery, and when he watches himself in the cinema, his reactions are fabulous to behold. The film's theme is an age-old one: the love triangle. When one of these three is a murderously ambitious wife it becomes heady stuff. Personally I think the coda should have been omitted, despite the fact that Mae's slow walk off the set is one of the best shots in the entire film. Considering the basic technical and narrative advances that have been made since 1928 are few it is remarkable that this film was made only 30-odd years after film had really been invented.

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