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Cine Salon Uncovers ‘Treasure’

Jack Hawkins starts in the 1953 British film "The Cruel Sea," which will be screened during the Cine Salon series at the Howe Library on Feb. 25. (Courtesy photograph)

Jack Hawkins starts in the 1953 British film "The Cruel Sea," which will be screened during the Cine Salon series at the Howe Library on Feb. 25. (Courtesy photograph)

The reliably eclectic Cine Salon, run by Bruce Posner, a film restorer and historian, is back at the Howe Library in Hanover with Buried Treasure, a program of arcane, underrated and undiscovered cinema gems.

On Feb. 25, two films from the well-known American avant-garde filmmaker Bruce Baille, who founded the San Francisco Cinemateque and Canyon Cinema, will be screened, as well as The Cruel Sea, a crackerjack 1953 Ealing Studios movie taken from the book by Nicholas Monsarrat about a British naval ship escorting a convoy during the Battle of the Atlantic. It has a Who’s Who of English character actors — Jack Hawkins, Donald Sinden and Denholm Elliott — and a script by the much esteemed writer of spy stories, Eric Ambler. Baille suggested the screening, Posner said, because of his passion for sea stories.

The Finnish filmmaker Sami von Ingen is represented on March 4 by a series of shorter films in which he recycles and alters found film footage to comment on the ephemeral nature of film and film history. On March 18 comes another lesser-known movie with an unexpected turn by Frank Sinatra as a would-be assassin plotting to kill the president. Released in 1954, Suddenly inspired the more famous The Manchurian Candidate, which was released in 1962, but disappeared from circulation after the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963. “Sinatra is so strong in it,” Posner observed.

April 1 brings the short films of Charley Bowers. Who? Bowers is an undiscovered, silent film master of surreal comedy, said Posner. “Take Rube Goldberg and Dr. Seuss and you have Charley Bowers.”

Finally, on April 22, there’s the rare chance to see Moana: A Romance of the Golden Age, the documentary about Samoa by the master Robert Flaherty, who lived there in the early 1920s with his family, including his young daughter Monica, to record tribal life. Released originally in 1926 as a silent film, Moana was one of those movies that was really meant to be heard as well as seen, Posner said. So 50 years later, Monica Flaherty returned to Samoa to record the sounds of music, wind and waves and then synchronized those sounds to the original film. “It works and it’s incredible how well it works, and how beautiful it is,” Posner said.

The movies start at 7 p.m.

For more information go to www.howelibrary.org/uploads/1357930086.pdf or call the Howe Library at 603-643-4120.

Nicola Smith can be reached at nsmith@vnews.com or 603-727-3211.