Edna Purviance's bio

Currently working on Edna Purviance's family biography. Photo: Leading Ladies © used by ednapurviance.org

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Sorry again, for the lack of new post. I have been working every spare free moment after work on the Edna Purviance family biography. Stay tuned, or visit Edna's .org site or even FB fan page. See Edna's event page for coming events!

I did just update the Chaplin Library with some great new covers from Dominique! So some great stuff, happening behind the scenes...

Also, I went to The Artist (twice!) and just LOVED IT! Sure it's modern, but what a wonder film to bridge to the past. Getting more people interested in silent films is a great thing! Hope it makes it to your area. And don't read a load about it, just see it and enjoy!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Harold Lloyd 'For Heaven Sakes'

January 24, 2012
For Heaven Sakes
starring Harold Lloyd


Cinema Arts Centre
Huntington, New York

Cinema Arts Centre Release: In For Heaven’s Sake, legendary comedian Harold Lloyd is a spoiled, rich young man who falls in love with Hope, a poor missionary’s daughter. He rather reluctantly helps her out by populating the mission with local low-lifes who chase him through the streets into the mission, where they hide out from the cops. He is so successful in helping the mission and rehabilitating the local thugs that he plans to marry Hope. Harold’s wealthy chums, dismayed that he is marrying beneath his station, kidnap the poor fellow to prevent him from making a “mistake.”

The climactic chase on a double-decker bus driven by drunks is as hilarious and exciting a piece of celluloid as has ever been produced, but it is merely the capper to an uninterrupted stream of brilliant sight gags. For Heaven’s Sake is one of the cleverest and most consistently entertaining of all of Lloyd’s silent comedies. (USA, 1926, 61 minutes, 35mm print courtesy of Harold Lloyd Entertainment)





Ben Model is one of the USA’s leading silent film accompanists, and has been playing piano and organ for silents at the Museum of Modern Art in New York for the past 27 years, and for over five years at Cinema Arts Centre.  Ben co-curated MoMA’s “Cruel and Unusual Comedy” series and Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle retrospective, and also curated Shout! Factory’s new “Ernie Kovacs Collection” DVD box set. 

A five-time recipient of the Meet The Composer grant, Ben is a regular accompanist at classic film festivals around the U.S.A. and in Norway, and performs at universities, museums, and historic theaters. Ben is the producer and co-founder of The Silent Clowns Film Series, now in its 14th season in NYC. Ben’s recorded scores can be heard on numerous DVD releases from Kino Video and others. Ben’s composed ensemble scores for films by Chaplin, Keaton and Lloyd are performed around the U.S. every year by orchestras and by concert bands.

Links for more details and tickets: LINK

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Chaplin & Co - New Animated French series

Thanks to Dominique and Trish for the links to the new 
Chaplin & Co
3-D French animated series - Number One
LINK TO SEE ONLINE
Update: the page has been taken off line.


Chaplin's Image Entertainment DVDs Still the Best!



One advantage of being around a long while, is the fact you can see different versions of films, as they get released. I'm basing this on the USA versions of DVDs available on Chaplin, but if you like the best print quality of Chaplin's films, what was on TCM last night (January 7, 2012), wasn't it. And it's not TCM's fault, it's just what is available now.

I watched City Lights, Modern Times, A Dog's Life, Shoulder Arms and The Kid, before turning off, but in those alone, only 'Modern Times' was good (but not great). The rest were far too contrasty to be enjoyable to watch. Just sad and painful, when you know the prints are so much better than what was shown. And some of emotional moments and comic has been lost with these poor prints, and new fans don't even know it. One of the reasons I am speaking out about these poor quality DVDs now available.

People who have not seen the older DVD versions or a high quality film prints of Chaplin, don't know what they are truly missing. And you are missing a lot! 

The out-of-print Image Entertainment DVDs are still the best print quality Charlie Chaplin film prints available for home use of Chaplin's films. Image is expensive, because they are out of print, but only best ones on DVD around. The warm beautiful film tones, full of rich fine detail, that has been totally lost in these later DVD transfers.

I have seen the different film releases of Chaplin films going on 15 years now, so talking from experience in seeing them from VHS, 35MM film, 16MM film and DVD.

What I saw last night, was so sad to see, and even hear, it was painful to watch, for someone who loves to see excellent print quality, but not being sold in the latest versions. They are becoming a strain to watch. Made sadder, because I know there are beautiful prints of these films. (And Image DVDs is one place you can see them.)

Watching Harry Myer (The Millionaire) in his house on the sofa talking with Chaplin and seeing his fancy shirt so blowout white or jacket solid black in tone, you couldn't even see the elegant clothes he was wearing, is a huge lost of the wonderful detail these films have.

I couldn't even see the tears on Jackie's or Charlie's face, in the key scene in The Kid. Their faces had no detail, just ghostly white. 

'A Dog's Life' print and sound quality was so poor last night (Jan. 7th, 2012), I placed my Image DVD copy in the player, to remind myself just how beautiful looking and good sounding that film really is. The sound on this latest version last night was horrible, with it fading in and out, missing whole sections. And print quality was the worst of the batch. Surprisingly dirty, especially at the beginning. Nothing like that on the Image DVD. Shoulder Arms wasn't much better last night either.

So, if you're new to Chaplin, and those are the first films you have seen, you didn't see the best prints of Charlie Chaplin's films.  Rollie (Chaplin's cameraman) worked hard on getting good print quality for Chaplin, and I know he would have been upset seeing those prints last night.

I know Image can be expensive, but the Image DVD versions should be part of your collection, if you want the best prints and also, the best prints with Edna's work, which has been edited out of the final versions available now. Edna aside, the Image Collection of Chaplin films is still better, even with the Chaplin score music adjustments for the added back scenes, than that I have seen since.

Just saying this, as a loyal fan, who loves these films, and love watching the best. I'm very glad TCM showed them, but sad to see such poor prints of the films. I especially want new fans to know this, since you may never know, and think you are seeing the best. You are not.

Anyone who thinks those were great, have not seen a quality print of Charlie Chaplin films.

Note: Image doesn't have the silent 1925 version of The Gold Rush, which is the best version of that film, for fans who want the true silent film. The 1942 does have the great score, so good to have both.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

January 7, 2012 - Don't forget Charlie Chaplin on tonight on TCM! Including some with Edna Purviance. Nine films in a roll from the current Janus Film version. 

Monday, January 02, 2012

Slapstick 2012!

January 26-29, 2012
Slapstick 2012
Bristol, England

plus Pre-Festival event on January 21st
Here is a Terry Gilliam style trailer and LINK to this year's event.