Flashback
A look back at this day in film history
January 31
October 25, 1928
Dreyer's Lost Passion

Today in 1928, Danish director Carl Theodor Dreyer was in Paris for the premiere of The Passion of Joan of Arc. Written from actual trial transcripts, the film dramatizes the famed French teen’s emotional and spiritual ordeal at the hands of church fathers through a series of close ups, mostly of the film’s star Marie Falconetti. While it was Falconetti’s second and last film performance, it would be remembered, as New Yorker film critic Pauline Kael wrote, as maybe “the finest performance ever recorded on film." Beloved by some, banned by the British for many years, the original film was lost when its master negative was burned in a fire (a fate not unlike that of its heroine). Despite fruitless attempts to reconstruct the original film from outtakes, Dreyer went to his grave, believing his masterpiece was lost forever. And then, miraculously, in 1981 a complete print was found in an Oslo mental institution’s janitor’s closet.


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The Happy Hooker January 31, 1975
The "Mickey Mouse Club" song goes porno

On January 31, 1975, one of cartoon’s best-loved characters and an orgy scene in an adult-themed film appeared together in court papers that underscore the fine points of copyright law.

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January 31, 1986
The Upside of Down and Out in Beverly Hills

A remake of a 30s French film remakes several significant Hollywood careers.

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