Recreation Movie Reviews
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The overall quality of Madacy's CHAPLIN #2 shows a little improvement in comparison with the #1 that was one of the worst DVDs I have seen in the streets. Not that Madacy has suddenly decided to clean the copies but because I suppose that the available copies were simply in a better shape. It's always under-average quality but let's rejoice anyway ! Furthermore, the music is rather agreeable this time. At last, the program presented here is very interesting and cannot be compared with the three shorts presented in the first volume.
CHARLIE'S RECREATION (1914) allows us to see Chaplin before the tramp disguise and creation that will make a star from him. But it's WORK (1915) that, alone, justifies the US$ 7 you will have to pay for the DVD. One of the first masterpieces of the genius.
A DVD for the archeologists ones.
We have here five Chaplin films and a guest appearance. The guest appearance is forgettable, as is the rest of the movie that the appearance is in. Two of these films are Chaplin treading water, "By the Sea" and "A Woman". "A Woman" is only important for trivial reasons, because Chaplin makes his last appearance in drag, with astonishing results.
The other films, though, are key to the Chaplin legacy. "Work" is his most political statement yet, with it's condemnation of bosses and managers via Charlie's boss, who sits in the back of a cart while Charlie draws it forwardthrough streets and up impossible hills. This film is so ridiculous that you wonder how on earth it came together to fit so well.
"The Bank" is important in that we have a truly sad ending, with Charlie's unrequited love rejected twice, and reasons for his hopes to get up twice too.
"The Tramp" is Charlie's most important Essanay film, the one that establishes his tramp as a character with depth. This film is more than a collection of gags, it's a story, and the ending is a shock. Chaplin would later learn how to engender his audience's sympathies before the end of the film, but in this film, we cannot help but feel sorry for the tramp, as he walks out of the picture in one of his most famous scenes ever.
These films were painstakingly restored by David Sheperd's "Film Preservation Associates" after a ten-year search for footage. What we have is the most complete versions of the Chaplin Essanay films possible, something that hasn't been seen in almost 80 years. This means, however, that sometimes the scene in a film will change dramatically, from a clear, good print to a worse, grainy, and scratchy print, and back again. But we must put up with such defects if we expect to enjoy these films at all, for the alternative is to see prints which, while consistent, are missing somtimes 20% of the footage originally in the film
The scores are well done, and the video compression is excellent.
And now for the rant, hinted at above...
It is possible to see these same films in a much cheaper edition from Madacy or Koch video, or numerous other companies. Don't do it. These companies have taken poor quality sources, sometimes cutting out a fifth of the frame, added lousy soundtracks, and thrown their product out in nice looking packaging for low prices. This product is unsatisfactory, though, as it is difficult to watch, and really doesn't show Chaplin in a good light. Do search out dvds made by the Image company, or tapes made by Kino, becuase these companies have the restorations that are worth watching. You will be glad you did!
So when my Social Studies teacher said we will be watching some Charlie Chaplin videos I was a little closed minded like everyone else.
The video we watched was Work, and just after about 5 minites of watching I was a Chaplin fan. The gags in the short little flim are ever bit as fun and funny as the day they were released. Some of my classmates just fell asleep, because they're too closed minded, but I would still recomened this stuff to any person young and old. He will give an ear to ear grin on the front of your melon. Chaplin rules.
If you are aspiring to climb Mount Rainier, or just want to know what it's like up there, the Ascend Mt. Rainier DVD will satisfy your coursity and inform you along the way.
FOCAL POINT IN MY LIVING ROOM. I ENJOY HAVING IT ON AS I READ,
BUT I LISTEN TO OTHER MUSIC INSTEAD OF THE MUSIC ONE THE DISC.
I RECOMMEND THIS DVD AND THINK IT WILL BE ENJOYED ESPECIALLY
DURING THE CHRISTMAS SEASON.......
I didn't really dig the candles, kind of weak, but maybe you'd like it, I dunno. Also, the card inside with pick up lines...hmmmmmm...not the funniest out there, but I guess you can't be all Martin Lawrence on a PG item...but it was aight.