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A Few Words About A few words about...™ Diary of a Lost Girl -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Oct 1, 2015.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    With the exception of a couple of early sound films, G.W. Past's reputation stems from half a dozen or so of his silent works.

    The Joyless Street (1925), The Love of Jeanne Ney (1927), Pandora's Box, The White Hell of Pitz Palu, and Diary of a Lost Girl (all 1929) are essential viewing for anyone interested in the history of the cinema.

    When it comes to silent cinema, there is a major difference between those produced here in the Colonies, and those of European heritage. Lost films abound. And while all negatives are nitrate, as well as most prints, occasionally prints will appear in unlikely places. Many prints that might have survived, were lost during WWII.

    Kino's new Blu-ray of Diary of a Lost Girl, is a reconstruction, as well as a restoration. And it can only look as good as surviving elements, which in this case is can be quite good.

    One of the points of interest must be the lead -- Louise Brooks -- she of the bobbed hair.

    I've not researched why she left Hollywood for Germany, but after proving her talents domestically, she made the move to Germany to appear in two Pabst productions, Pandora's Box and Diary of Lost Girl.

    Both are very worthy of your attention.

    One interesting connection is that Diary was photographed by Sepp Allgeier, also responsible as lead cinematographer on Leni Reisfenstahl's Triumph of the Will (1935).

    I suggest that you do two things.

    Pick up the new Blu-ray of Diary, and follow that with a copy of Miss Brooks' autobiography, Lulu in Hollywood.

    And enjoy.

    Image - 4

    Audio - N/A

    4k Up-rez - 4


    Pass / Fail - Pass

    Highly Recommended

    RAH

     
  2. bigshot

    bigshot Cinematographer

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    I got the Masters of Cinema blu of this from the UK last year. I'm sure the US version is identical. It's a great film with a great transfer and a perfect soundtrack. Well worth getting! The UK version includes a booklet and a documentary, which the US doesn't. The audio sounds great on this by the way. Silent films aren't silent! It's a perfectly idiomatic piano score. I'm guessing it's the same one on the Kino.
     
  3. notmicro

    notmicro Stunt Coordinator

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    Note that the major heading, and some of the text, currently reads "Diary of a Young Girl"; its "Diary of a Lost Girl"
     
  4. atcolomb

    atcolomb Screenwriter

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    LuLu in Hollywood is a great book to read and then see the documentary LuLu in Berlin which is a extra on the Criterion release of Pandora's Box. it's too bad she did not appear in more movies but that's what makes her so special.
     
  5. Rob Willey

    Rob Willey Screenwriter

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    The director's name was Pabst, not Past.


    Louise Brooks was highly intelligent, outspoken and did not suffer fools gladly. Needless to say, she rubbed studio execs the wrong way who expected their on-screen female talent to be pretty and dumb, or if not dumb then quiet. She sabotaged most of the relationships with producers that might have provided her more opportunities to become a bigger star.


    I second RAH's recommendation of Lulu in Hollywood.
     
  6. Dave Jessup

    Dave Jessup Stunt Coordinator

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    This film's been on a "wish list" since we saw it at the Dryden Theater several years ago (probably where - though not when - Ms Brooks herself last saw it). Blu release may be the tipping point.


    Will have to see how this reconstruction compares to what we saw at Eastman; the Kino DVD we viewed shortly after was a slightly different edit. I see that customer reviews at Amazon go into great detail there.
     
  7. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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    IU owned(back in 89-90) copies of several Brooks films.

    We watched the "hacked up" variation of this. The professor had exerpt notes(likely a version of what was used here for the restoration).

    This movie, amongst others, were the focal point of artistic direction and censorship(gone wrong).

    Happily buy this and put it next to the 5 other copies of this I already have(which includes last years MOC).
     
  8. bigshot

    bigshot Cinematographer

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    The Beaver has frame grabs up on the UK and US blu-rays now. As I expected, it looks like the exact same film transfer. The Kino has a little more noise reduction and a little lower bitrate, meaning the MOC has better grain structure. And from the grabs it looks like Kino squashed the image horizontally a bit to get the titles closer to title safe. (Some silent films have elements that go right to the very edge of the frame.) But I'm sure folks would be happy with either release. Not much difference there.
     
    Hollywodland likes this.
  9. Hollywodland

    Hollywodland Agent

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    Can someone please explain to me why this BD got score 4 out of 5 for video quality when Bluray.com gave it 2.5? And I think rightfully so because its streched, its clearly visible in screencaps on DVDBeaver.com. Sometimes those reviews on different relevant sites and sources only confuse a person.
     
  10. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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    Cause a certain reviewer "over there" doesn't understand what "Nitrate from the infancy of cinema" means.

    Weird. Same guy did both. Apparently his take on framing choice is worth 1.5 points. Not to me. I bought both and "why is the framing different" is a question for Kino. I don't find it that distracting...and if you didn't already own the other one...you wouldn't know the difference.
     

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