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|Document Type:||Visual material|
|All Authors / Contributors:||
Juano Hernandez; Paul Robeson; Mercedes Gilbert; Carmen Newsome; Edna Mae Harris; Carl Mahon; Starr Calloway; Oscar Micheaux; Julia Theresa Russell
|Language Note:||Body and soul and The girl from Chicago have intertitles.|
|Notes:||First released as three motion pictures: [United States] : Micheaux Pictures, 1925-1939.
Colour recording system: NTSC.
|Credits:||Producer/director/writer, Oscar Micheaux.|
|Cast:||Paul Robeson, Julia Theresa Russell, Mercedes Gilbert (Body and soul) ; Carl Mahon, Starr Calloway, Juano Hernandez (The girl from Chicago) ; Edna Mae Harris, Carmen Newsome, Juano Hernandez (Lying lips).|
|Description:||1 videocassette (VHS) (204 min.) : si. and sd., black and white ; 1/2 in.|
|Contents:||Body and soul (75 min., 1925) --
The girl from Chicago (69 min., 1932) --
Lying lips (60 min., 1939).
|Series Title:||African American film heritage video series.|
Body and Soul' is a rare silent film by Micheaux that stars Paul Robeson in his first performance. In the original version Robeson played a corrupt 'jackleg' preacher, an embodiment of evil who exploits his poor black parishioners, extorts money from a gambling house and seduces a girl of the parish. The censors forced major revisions. Robeson plays two separate roles, those of a virtuous man and a wicked one. The evil self is framed within a bad dream. The film may gain from this revision in its departure from the myths about the lives of blacks projected by Hollywood. This was a pioneering melodrama by a black filmmaker with an authentic basis in black life.
One of Micheaux's most famous films, 'The Girl from Chicago', features Carl Mahon as a young secret service agent, who falls in love with a schoolteacher in a small Mississippi town. Micheaux produced a silent version of this crime melodrama in 1926 under the title 'The Spiders Web'. A classic melodrama, 'Lying Lips' features Edna Mae Harris as a nightclub singer who is unjustly convicted and sent to prison for the murder of her aunt. It was co-produced by the distinguished black aviator, Colonel Hubert Julian. 'Body and Soul' also available on 16mm in a shorter version.