Charlie Chaplin and Virginia Cherrill in “City Lights.”
Charlie Chaplin and Virginia Cherrill in “City Lights.”
Lincoln Theater in Damariscotta will present a new series, Celebrating the Silents, which will bring three classic silent films to the big screen and be offered free of charge on Friday afternoons in January. First in the series, “The Lost Battalion” (1919), screens on Friday, January 11, at 2 p.m. and is based on the experiences of soldiers in the American 77th Infantry Division, about 550 of whom were isolated and surrounded by the Germans during the Battle of the Argonne in World War I. The men suffer from thirst, hunger and heavy losses, but refuse to surrender. As more men are killed and captured, carrier pigeons become the only method of communicating with headquarters. Second in the series, screening on Friday, January 18, at 2 p.m., is D.W. Griffith’s “The Birth of a Nation.” The 1915 film, telling the story of the Civil War and its aftermath as seen through the eyes of two families, has sparked protests, riots, and divisiveness since its release due to its blatantly racist perspective. In 2018, “The Birth of a Nation” was voted one of the top 10 most influential films of all time. There will be a facilitated discussion after the screening. The series closes on Friday, January 25, at 2 p.m. with Charlie Chaplin’s classic comedy “City Lights” (1931), in which a homeless tramp befriends a blind flower seller and convinces her he is a millionaire while he secretly labors to pay for the restoration of her sight.