Robert Harris

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Kino's new Blu-ray of Fred Niblo's 1922 Blood and Sand, with Rudolf Valentino is a quality affair.

Based upon 35mm elements, it's a wonderful example of the film, and we're apt not to see better.

The film was re-made in 1941 by Fox, based upon the same novel by Vicente Blasco Ibanez, with Tyrone Power, and the two give very different and interesting takes on the same subject.

Very film-like, nice grain, shadow detail, and properly tinted.

Image – 4

Audio – n/a

Pass / Fail – Pass

Upgrade from DVD – Yes

Recommended

RAH

 
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bujaki

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Am I the only one excited by silent films in HD? Many of these are lost, so when we get a good one with a good restoration, it's exciting. I just wish they would release these with the Carl Davis scores. They are so outstanding and add to the experience.
You are not alone.
 

mcblue

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Am I the only one excited by silent films in HD? Many of these are lost, so when we get a good one with a good restoration, it's exciting. I just wish they would release these with the Carl Davis scores. They are so outstanding and add to the experience.
Hear, hear regarding the Carl Davis scores.
 

Robert Harris

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It's great that silent films like Blood and Sand are being released and there are hints that Abel Gance's Napoleon might happen this year?
Sorry, no.
 
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roxy1927

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I don't know why but I find Carl Davis pure cacophony. I know I'm alone that everyone loves his work. I dread him like the plague. Someone like Steve Sterner at Film Forum I find superb and always does a great job. One of the few remaining pleasures in NY have been silents there. Also Loews Jersey has had some wonderful organists. MOMA as well as had terrific pianists. But Davis for me is unlistenable. I wish I knew why I'm not hearing what everyone else is.
He did a nice job though of arranging Rimsky Korsakov for The Thief of Bagdad.
 

ColbyCo82

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My vote is for Garbo's final Silent The Kiss (1929 MGM) with its amazing Art Deco interiors, and where she's at the height of her considerable powers before being forced to master English.
It also has a great original music and effects score.
 

roxy1927

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I should add that Steve Sterner for whom my admiration knows no bounds talks about Davis's work in the most glowing of terms. And I'm thinking to myself but you're so much better!

The great classical record producer John Culshaw who made so many wonderful recordings from the 50s through the 60s said he found Mahler unlistenable. So there you have it.
 

usrunnr

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Who wrote the score that accompanies this film?
 

Ed Lachmann

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Just wish that Kevin Brownlow and Photoplay could wrestle The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, The Wind, The Crowd, It, The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg and Greed AWAY from the silent classics burial crew over at WB (who will NEVER put them out on either DVD or blu-ray) along with the gorgeous Carl Davis scores and do it themselves. Public domain?
 
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Arthur Powell

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I don't know why but I find Carl Davis pure cacophony. I know I'm alone that everyone loves his work. I dread him like the plague. Someone like Steve Sterner at Film Forum I find superb and always does a great job. One of the few remaining pleasures in NY have been silents there. Also Loews Jersey has had some wonderful organists. MOMA as well as had terrific pianists. But Davis for me is unlistenable. I wish I knew why I'm not hearing what everyone else is.
He did a nice job though of arranging Rimsky Korsakov for The Thief of Bagdad.
While I would hesitate to call Davis overrated, I think that his good scores have created unrealistic expectations for a lot of people concerning silent film scores. Full symphonic scores with dozens of players would have been the exception and not the norm during the silent era, and when you would have encountered such elaborate scoring it would have been in one of the big cities for an initial engagement. Then you have the issue that Davis scores in a more contemporary style than you would have encountered back in the 1920s. Does that make his work bad? I would say no. His scores for "Ben-Hur," "The Big Parade," "Safety Last," "The Kid Brother," The Iron Mask," "The General," and several others are quite good. His more recent efforts aren't as good though in my opinion. His score for "The Freshman" was considerably off the mark and missed Lloyd's humor, but I do know that some feel that comedies aren't his forte. I also can't say that enamored of his "Thief of Bagdad" score as it comes off like a Rimsky-Korsakov/Scheherazade needle-drop to me. Gaylord Carter's theater organ score is the still the definitive "Thief of Bagdad" score for me.



And what kind of musical accompaniment does this blu of Blood And Sand have? Orchestral? Piano? The dreaded organ :(?
I believe that an ensemble score from Mont Alto accompanies this release. We don't have the privilege of hearing from the honorable theater organ on this release, but Mont Alto's work is generally good.
 

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