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The Forgotten: Street of Dreams

Production stills have played a large and peculiar role in my movie-watching life. Seeing a haunting image from some unfamiliar film can set me off into reveries, and make me crave the opportunity to see the mystery movie itself. I guess this explains my otherwise bizarre quest to watch every film illustrated in Denis Gifford's A Pictorial History of Horror Movies, but it doesn't stop there.

I must have seen the above image from Karl Grune's 1923 Die Straße (The Street) in some ancient volume on expressionist cinema, and it stuck in some dusty corner of my brain ever since. It may have also gotten aligned with the dream sequence from Wild Strawberries where Victor Sjostrom observes a watchmaker's sign, a clock without hands. (Along with movie stills, such signs have an inexplicable atmospheric value of their own.) Maybe the book was Siegfried "laugh-a-minute" Kracauer's From Caligari to Hitler,

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