Silent Film Festival makes noise at the Scala

Fight For The Matterhorn. (Photo courtesy of Film Archive)

The Silent Film Festival is back to offer a unique cinematic experience to Bangkok audiences at the Scala Theatre in Siam Square, Rama I, from Friday until SundayMay 24-2.

Organised by the Thai Film Archive, the sixth edition of the one-of-a-kind film festival is a rare opportunity to watch a selection of five movies with unique styles and stories, from a British-Indian romantic tragedy to a spy film from Italy, a wartime romance set in Paris and Harold Lloyd's last silent picture. The films will be accompanied by live music performed by Thai and American musicians.

The festival will open with Fight For The Matterhorn, an Alpine thriller with a romantic subplot based on a true historical account of two climbing parties in a race to summit one of the highest peaks in the Alps. The film will be screened on Friday at 7.30pm, with live music accompaniment by Korphai Band, Thailand's well-respected fusion band that mixes traditional Thai instruments with international musical sensibilities.

American pianist/composer Donald Sosin and singer Joanna Seaton will play live accompaniment for the rest of the programme.

Saturday will feature 7th Heaven at 6.30pm and Filibus at 8.30pm. A love story between a sewer worker and a poor woman set in Paris during the war, 7th Heaven was an inspiration for the 1958 classic Thai film Sawan Mued (Dark Heaven), directed by RD Pestonji.

A 1915 Italian crime thriller that boasts daring heists, exciting subterfuge, dazzling colours and a touch of feminism, Filibus tells the story of a sky pirate who flies high in her airship and wreaks havoc on billionaires and bankers.

Speedy. photo courtesy of 2001 SNOWBOUND, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

The last two movies -- Shiraz: A Romance Of India and Speedy -- are scheduled for Sunday at 6.15pm and 8.30pm, respectively.

Based on a romantic tragedy between the 17th-century Mughal ruler Shah Jahan and his queen, Shiraz tells the ravishing tale behind the creation of one of the world's most iconic structures, the Taj Mahal.

A superb valedictory to the silent era, Speedy tells about a baseball-crazy young man in New York who has to find a horse that has been stolen in order to save his girlfriend's horse-drawn-carriage franchise.

All films will have Thai and English intertitles. Tickets cost 120, 140 and 160 baht and can be purchased at the box office.

Visit www.facebook.com/silentfilmthailand or www.fapot.org.