Gold, Violet, Black, Crimson, White

In Features by Paula Hammond - Features Editor

The traditional view of the early cinema is of something quite polite—but as David Hewitt’s new book reveals, it was anything but.

Gold, Violet, Black, Crimson, White reveals just what was seen and heard in picture houses during the early days of cinema. And it was gaudy, raucous, and glorious! 

It was into this world of ‘anything goes’ that Five Nights emerged. Hugely controversial at the time, this now lost film was the subject of a bitter court case. 

Drawing on long-forgotten documents, Hewitt reconstructs the film and the era that produced it. An era that emerged from the trauma of world war determined to be different. An era where a young woman could direct a film of her own and where minorities got considerably more screen time than they sometimes do today.

The world that Hewitt pains is a heady world, which is as strange as it is familiar—and the author brings it to life with aplomb.

Gold, Violet, Black, Crimson, White should be in the Christmas stockings of anyone with a love of history and period cinema.

Gold, Violet, Black, Crimson, White by David Hewitt (ISBN 9781803133166) is priced £11.99 in paperback and available from Troubadour Publishing