Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Magnetic Unknown 

Wednesday, Apr 23 2014
Comments

Lesser known but freakier than Freaks, Tod Browning's silent horror movie The Unknown stars Lon Chaney in an epic turn as Alonzo the Armless, a deformed knife-thrower who uses his toes to hurl daggers. His lovely assistant Nanon (played by a fresh-faced Joan Crawford) might love the strongman, if not for her crippling aversion to man-arms (bad case of haphephobia). Lucky for us, Alonzo's disfigurement does not put murder, or self-inflicted amputation, beyond him. In a superb and perverse counterpoint, The Unknown is preceded by Sissy Boy Slap Party, Guy Madden's deliriously silly peek at what happens on a sultry island when seven sailors have too much time on their hands. And the Magnetic Fields' Stephin Merritt makes good on his promise to follow up his 2010 appearance at the Castro Theatre, when he meticulously synced his vocals to a 1917 version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, by providing live musical accompaniment for both of tonight's films. As one of a few musicians who can bridge the hideous and hilarious in a single word, he is uniquely qualified.


Tue., May 6, 8 p.m., 2014

About The Author

Silke Tudor

Related Locations

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Slideshows

  • Phish at the Bill Graham Auditorium
    Phish is in the midst of a block of sold out shows at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium (October 27-29). The Monday night concert featured a rare first set opener of “Walfredo” with the band members switching instruments for the song. The evening’s highlights included John Fishman and his iconic vacuum cleaner solo and favorites such as Chalk Dust Torture, Slave to the Traffic Light, Axilla, Rift, 2001 Space Odyssey, and Maze. The show also featured Phish’s debut of a, seemingly impromptu, version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” to with roaring approval of the, singing along, crowd. With Game 6 being tonight, partying Phish fans will join Giants fans in Civic Center Plaza where there will be a World Series viewing party on a large screen set up by the City. Photography by Jamie Soja.
  • The 4th Annual Masquerotica 2014 - NSFW
    The theme this year was Carnaval Mystique for the 4th Annual Masquerotica at The Factory. Attendees were entertained by strip dance, trapeze, and live music. Photographs by Calibree Photography.

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed
  1. Most Popular