Best Versions of Silent Films to Get?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by DavidPla, May 10, 2004.

  1. DavidPla

    DavidPla Cinematographer

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    Being a lover of film and having those films look the best they can, I was wondering if anyone can help me out on which DVD version is the best to get for the following silent films I which to pick up. I've found many different versions from different studios and have been confused on which I would be getting the best from.

    The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
    Nosferatu
    The Lost World
    Metropolis

    Any help would be amazing! Thank you.
     
  2. Jeff_HR

    Jeff_HR Producer

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    Are you multi-regional?
     
  3. DavidPla

    DavidPla Cinematographer

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    Unfortunately no. Region 1.
     
  4. Jeff_HR

    Jeff_HR Producer

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    I'd recommend the Kino Video versions for:

    - "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari"
    - "Nosferatu"
    - "Metropolis"

    There may be some reviews online. Do a search & see.
     
  5. EricSchulz

    EricSchulz Producer

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    Jeff:

    I am multi-regional...any suggestions that are better than the Kino versions?
     
  6. Jeff_HR

    Jeff_HR Producer

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    For the multi-regional you might check out these two versions:

    - "Metropolis" R2 by Eureka
    - "Nosferatu" R2 by Eureka
     
  7. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    Caligari: Get the Kino for video, then look for Timothy Brock's score for the film on CD. Kino's scores are mediocre, but the Timothy Brock score on the Image/Blackhawk DVD is PERFECT for the film.

    Nosferatu is coming from Milestone later this year, from the Photoplay/BFI restoration. It's the best looking version of the film and will have an orchestral score by James Bernard. Until then, get the Kino for image and the Image DVD for the organ score.

    For Metropolis, Kino is the only option.

    The Lost World: Image/Blackhawk's release. It has the most complete version and also the best image quality. It has an orchestral score by Robert Israel AND a 5.1 score by the Alloy Orchestra.
     
  8. Mark_vdH

    Mark_vdH Screenwriter

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    Actually, the best Metropolis dvd is probably the German release, which has proper German intertitles (with optional English subtitles). If you don't mind the English intertitles the (cheaper and besides the intertitles identical) Eureka version is the one to get.

    I've owned three versions of Nosferatu including the Eureka version, and I think the current BFI version is the best choice. It features (apparently) correct tinting, much needed window-boxing (some key scenes are tightly framed) and a good (if not great) score by James Bernard. It's not quite as sharp as some other versions though. You can find a review/comparison here:
    http://207.136.67.23/film/dvdcompare/nosferatu-3.htm
     
  9. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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  10. Jack Theakston

    Jack Theakston Supporting Actor

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    Just to cover what hasn't been, the best DVD edition of THE LOST WORLD by far is David Shepard's Image edition (for now, at least).

    However, if you decide to rent a print, or should it come out in the future, George Eastman House has the definitive restoration on the film.
     
  11. Mark_vdH

    Mark_vdH Screenwriter

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    Yep Oscar, that's the one.

    Personally, I don't mind the intertitles that much (I own the R1 SE), and I'd say the following is better value for money:

    http://play.com/play247.asp?page=tit...3&p=57&c=&g=72

    For less money, you'll get the same version of Metropolis (except for the intertitles), and the 2 disc SE of M....
     
  12. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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    sounds very much like a true bargain

    cheers

    Oscar
     
  13. Brian PB

    Brian PB Supporting Actor

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  14. Mark Zimmer

    Mark Zimmer Producer

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    I'm not so sure that I'd consider the Eastman House restoration definitive. When Shepard did his reconstruction (since GEH wouldn't cooperate with him on a video release), he turned up additional footage that they didn't have. Unfortunately, he also snipped out the overtly racist materials too. So unless he has donated his additonal materials to GEH and they've incorporated them into their print, neither one is definitive.
     
  15. Jack Theakston

    Jack Theakston Supporting Actor

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    I was speaking in terms of aesthetic quality, of course. I don't know what their current situation is about that extra footage, but considering they're only short about a reel, I think it's a pretty good estimation that they have almost all the material possible.

    Still-- here's hoping!
     

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