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Wings with live musical accompaniment by France's Prima Vista Quartet
Webster University/Moore Auditorium
St. Louis, MO
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Wings with live musical accompaniment by France's Prima Vista Quartet
William A. Wellman, U.S., 1927, 144 min., silent
With live musical accompaniment by France's Prima Vista Quartet

Commemorating the centennial of the U.S. entry into World War I, the Webster U. Film Series, the Centre Francophone, and Cinema St. Louis present the classic silent film Wings with live musical accompaniment by Frances Prima Vista Quartet. The winner of the first Academy Award for Best Picture  it shared the honor with Sunrise  Wings ranks among the last great films of the silent era.

A story of friendship, love, brotherhood, and heroism set against the backdrop of World War I, Wings expertly mixes intimate melodrama and grand spectacle, with its battle scenes and aerial choreography lending the film a genuine epic scope. Wings became the yardstick against which future aviation films were measured. Director William A. Wellman (The Public Enemy, Nothing Sacred, A Star Is Born)  who was himself a World War I combat aviator  employed some 300 pilots in the filming, and the climactic re-creation of the Battle of Saint-Mihiel was staged over 10 days with some 3,500 infantrymen.

The film features a quartet of mismatched lovers: Mary Preston (It Girl Clara Bow) pines for neighbor Jack Powell (Charles Buddy Rogers), a car mechanic, but hes smitten with Sylvia (Jobyna Ralston), who in turn longs for wealthy David Armstrong (Richard Arlen). When the United States enters World War I, Jack and David transform from romantic rivals into close friends after becoming pilots in the Army Air Force, with Mary  still in pursuit of Jack  boldly joining the pair in France as a member of the Women's Motor Corps.

Wings is accompanied by the Prima Vista Quartet, which during its 15-year existence has become a benchmark in the world of cine-concerts. Varietys Lisa Nesselson declared that the quartet offered the best silent film accompaniment Ive heard. For this special performance, the group  composer and violist Baudime Jam, violinists Elzbieta Gladys and Amélie Paradis, and cellist Frédéric Deville  is supplemented by Matthias Champon on trumpet and Cédric Barbier on percussion.

Sponsored by the Jane M. & Bruce P. Robert Charitable Foundation, Cultural Services of the French Embassy in Chicago & New York, and Centre Francophone at Webster University


Webster University/Moore Auditorium (View)
470 East Lockwood Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63119
United States


Film > Festivals
Film > Movies

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


Owner: Cinema St. Louis
On BPT Since: Mar 14, 2011
Cliff Froehlich

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