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(1949, d. R.G. Springsteen / 1948, d. Edward Ludwig)


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This month we are excited to present two films—R.G. Springsteen's HELLFIRE (1949) and Edward Ludwig's WAKE OF THE RED WITCH (1948)—from "Martin Scorsese Presents Republic Rediscovered: New Restorations from Paramount Pictures," which screened at The Museum of Modern Art in February and August of 2018. Organized by MoMA in association with The Film Foundation and Paramount Pictures, the films in the series provide a window into Scorsese's love for the famous B-movie studio and the ingenuity that he found in many of their pictures. Restored by Paramount, these overlooked and previously unavailable gems can finally be experienced in the best possible quality. 


HELLFIRE was shot by Republic Pictures staff cinematographer Jack A. Marta in the studio's special two-color Trucolor process. The result is a dynamic orange and blue landscape, with the vibrant colors accentuating the violent but heartfelt story of a gunfighter (Republic regular Bill Elliott) who promises a dying preacher that he'll build a church. His quest to fulfill his promise leads to the infamous outlaw Doll Brown, played by "Queen of the B's" Marie Windsor, a role that she would later call her favorite of all time. Deftly directed by R.G. Springsteen, the film ebbs and flows between campy melodrama and earnest tear-jerking tragedy, resulting in one of the most unique Westerns of all time. 

Running time: 90 minutes


WAKE OF THE RED WITCH was one of "poverty row" studio Republic Pictures’ most expensive productions and also one of its most successful. The film stars John Wayne as the captain of a cargo ship in the South Pacific in 1860 who is seeking both revenge and the heart of Gail Russell's Angelique. A dreamlike movie that creatively makes use of flashbacks, director Edward Ludwig doesn't hold anything back as his characters navigate the search for sunken treasure and a giant octopus, among other adventurous things. The moody atmosphere builds to a terrifying crescendo and the film ends with an image of John Wayne that is impossible to forget. 

Running time: 86 minutes

Martin Scorsese on Film Preservation

HubSpot Video

About The Film Foundation Restoration Screening Room

The Film Foundation (TFF), in partnership with DelphiQuest and Oracle Corporation, has created a virtual space to showcase its preservation/restoration program. Films restored with TFF support will be made available on the second Monday of each month, free of charge, for audiences to discover. The programming will feature a diverse range of restorations, from classics to avant-garde, independent, documentary and short films, from every era, genre, and region of the world. The monthly screenings will be presented through the DelphiQuest platform, available through your web browser, and will be accompanied by supplemental materials that focus on the restoration process and celebrate the collaborative nature of film preservation by highlighting the work of the foundation’s archive and studio partners. The Film Foundation Restoration Screening Room is supported by Oracle Corporation, which provides cloud storage and infrastructure capabilities. Learn more about the work of The Film Foundation.