Sag Harbor Cinema’s Here Comes The Cinema! is winding down, but there is still four chances to enjoy the cinematic experience. On Sunday, February 2, Edward Sedgwick and (uncredited) Buster Keaton’s The Cameraman (1928) will be presented at Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor at 2 p.m. The afternoon will include a post film conversation with director Mary Harron.
The silent classic, which is considered to be one of Keaton’s best comedies, follows photographer Buster (Buster Keaton), who in an attempt to impress Sally (Marceline Day), an attractive young secretary working for MGM Newsreels, purchases a movie camera, abandons his career as a photographer, and boldly attempts to make it as a news cameraman.
“Good laugh picture with Buster Keaton,” Variety said about the film in a review. “The same old stencil about a boob that does everything wrong and cashes in finally through sheer accident.”
The Cameraman was filmed mostly throughout New York, at iconic spots like Midtown Manhattan, Coney Island, and Yankee Stadium.
“One thing that fortunately remains lost is the worst single idea MGM ever tried to levy onto Keaton. They wanted the film to end with a sacrilege: Buster smiling. That scene was shot then test-screened. In this case, when the public spoke, they were adamant, and they were right. There would be no grinning Great Stone Face at the end of The Cameraman, or ever,” film critic Dennis Harvey said in his introduction of the film at a screening during the San Francisco Silent Film Festival, in 2012.
Harron’s directorial career launched in 1996 with I Shot Andy Warhol. She followed that up with American Psycho in 2000, The Notorious Bettie Page in 2006 and The Moth Diaries. Charlie Says, her most recent work, debuted at the Venice Film Festival in 2018. Harron has also directed several episodes of notable television series, including Homicide, Life on the Street, Oz, The L Word, Six Feet Under, and Big Love. She helmed all six episodes of the award-winning Netflix series Alias Grace, which was adapted by Sarah Polley from the Margaret Atwood novel.
Prior to venturing into film and television, Harron was a rock journalist. She helped start Punk Magazine in the late 1970’s and was the first to interview the Ramones and Talking Heads. She was also the first writer from an American publication to interview the Sex Pistols.
Her next project will focus on the late years of Salvador Dali. She penned the film with her husband, John C. Walsh.
Admission is $15 for adults and free for children under 14-years-old.
Bay Street is located at 1 Bay Street in Sag Harbor. For more information, visit www.sagharborcinema.org.