Hamilton on Film

Short video on the life and career of The Man they called Mr Murder – Tod Slaughter.

Hamilton on Film-Tod Slaughter

There are great films and there are great stars. And sometimes there are stars and films which can’t be categorised by the normal standards of sensitive acting, beautiful cinematography or even believable story lines. In this month’s “Hamilton on Film” report, I’ll be exploring the rise to greatness and infamy  of one Britain’s most unique film stars, a purveyor of “ham” at it’s most succulent…

Ladies and Gentlemen – we proudly present

“The Man who was Mr Murder”- a short tribute to the inimitable Tod Slaughter.

tod-slaughter-normalWATCH “THE MAN WHO WAS MR MURDER”

Hamilton on Film-A Conrad Veidt Night


A few years ago I was talking to a friend who was running a weekly film night in the Soho Sanctum Cinema – a small yet opulent basement cinema off Beak Street. One week she told me that the next guest had fallen through and the night would have to be cancelled. I offered to do a night on Noel Coward – with a screening of The Scoundrel – his sole Hollywood appearance and a very interesting film in it’s own right. Although very last minute the night proved to be a success and over the next 4 months, I was asked to give several more Film Night talks and presentations. We did Anna May Wong and showed “Piccadilly”, a Tod Browning & Lon Chaney night highlighted by the crazed delights of The Unknown and for our fourth show – which was videoed as it happened, we celebrated the great German actor Conrad Veidt. We showed a feature film and I also introduced a number of clips from Conrad’s silent films to give some context to the man. The evening was capped by a sit down interview with the delightful Vivienne Philips about her role in the Conrad Veidt society. The sound is a little weak, since it’s just the in camera microphone on an old Mini Dv camera – but this conveys some of the enjoyment.


Watch “A Conrad Veidt celebration”


Hamilton on Film – Vitaphone and the Birth of the Talkies

(a conversation with Robert Gitt)


Shot in late 2007 for Westway TV, this archival piece sees me in conversation with esteemed film preservationist Robert Gitt, a man who can fairly claim to have rescued many films which would otherwise no longer be with us.
Here Robert discusses the beginning of the Talkies in the late 20’s and the unexpectedly cautious approach of the studios (who feared exhausting their audiences with TOO MUCH sound.) and the peculiar breed of films that resulted. Again this is shot on (2) camcorders – so the audio quality isn’t superb – however Robert comes across clearly and I think this is a valuable document in it’s own way. Hope you enjoy it.


Play Robert Gitt Interview


Hamilton on Film – Charles Doble on restoring Michael Powell’s

“Luna Del Miel” (aka Honeymoon) (1958)


Research footage shot in 2006 for a proposed documentary on Michael Powell’s later career. We are in the garden of gentleman farmer and amateur film restorer Charles Doble, a man with a large collection of British films on 16mm and even original 35mm  prints – which he keeps in his attic – which doubles as a private cinema. Charles talks about how he came to know Michael Powell and also how he became interested in restoring the much maligned Lune del Miel – a film which while shot in a unique 70mm process was invariable televised in terrible pan & scan prints which took all the panache out of the film and made it look visually  ugly. As he talks, we see Charles preparing to screen the film.

Play “The Unknown Films of Michael Powell”


Author: thomashamilton65

I am a film-maker and film historian with a passion for the less well explored aspects of cinema-lore.

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