The Secret Cinema presents
FASHION UNDRESSED: FILMS OF STYLE AND BEAUTY
Earlier this year, the Secret Cinema was asked by Towson University in Maryland to create a special film program...to compliment a gallery exhibition on the history of women's undergarments! We were encouraged to include any films touching on the themes of fashion and beauty, so we searched through the archive and came up with an assemblage of shorts (short films, that is!) from the 1930s through the 1970s. Included were educational and advertising films, entertainment shorts and newsreels.
Some were old Secret Cinema favorites, and others had never been projected before.
We were so pleased with the results that we decided that we had to share this program with our regular audience -- and where better than in our new free screening series at University City's Rotunda? So, on Thursday, May 10 we'll present FASHION UNDRESSED: FILMS OF STYLE AND BEAUTY.
There will be one complete screening at 8:00 pm. Admission is free.
As usual, all Secret Cinema programs are projected in 16mm film on a giant screen (not video).
Just a few highlights of FASHION UNDRESSED... are:
THE COSTUME DESIGNER (1950) - In 1950 the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences oversaw the production of a series of one-reel shorts covering different aspects of the film industry, each film being produced by a different studio. R.K.O. made this reel on the importance of the wardrobe department, with a special focus on sunglass-wearing designer Edith Head (who, oddly, is not named).
FIGURE FORUM (1954) - Warner Brothers -- not the famous film studio, but the Warner Brothers Foundations and Bras Company of Bridgeport, Connecticut -- made this film about choosing the proper bra and girdle. TRIVIA NOTE: THIS REEL WAS AMONG THE FIRST 3 OR 4 16MM FILMS THE SECRET CINEMA EVER OWNED -- IT WAS THROWN IN WITH THE FIRST PROJECTOR WE PURCHASED, BACK IN 1975!
GIRLS IN SHORT SHORT DRESSES (1966) - Paramount made this topical film in the final days of the theatrical short subject era, to capitalize on the worldwide interest in then very-Swinging London. It stars actual mod band The Thoughts, best known to record collectors for their recording of Ray Davies' (of the Kinks) otherwise unreleased song "All Night Stand." In this rare Technicolor pictorial, they perform two songs in the famous Blaise's nightclub, and in a reverse on the usual rock band scenario, THEY chase GIRLS around tube stations and Carnaby Street boutiques. The film also makes a visit to the studio of fashion designer Mary Quant, inventor of the miniskirt.
THE LOOK OF SHANGRI-LA (1973) - A "production reel," or promotional short showing behind-the-scenes looks at a then-forthcoming major motion picture. This one was made to plug the disastrous 1970s musical remake of Frank Capra's classic 1937 fantasy LOST HORIZON, with an emphasis on the new version's now very dated costume design.
HOW TO UNDRESS IN FRONT OF YOUR HUSBAND (1937) - Curious comedy short made by indie exploitation producer and distributor Dwain Esper (MANIAC, REEFER MADNESS). While not QUITE as salacious as its title implies, it nonetheless achieved notoriety by virtue (?) of its leading lady, Elaine Barrie, who was then in the middle of a rocky marriage to legendary actor John Barrymore.
Plus HEAVENLY BODY (1975), WINNING STYLES (1968), HOW DO THEY TIE-DYE CLOTH? (1970) and more!
SECRET CINEMA WEBSITE: http://www.thesecretcinema.com
Admission is FREE