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Pathé Films
Supplement 1, 1908

Digital facsimile on
Windows and Macintosh compatible CD-R

 

BOOK REVIEW

Pathé Films, Supplement 1, 1908
Digital facsimile produced by Robert Quesinberry

Golden Age Publishing : Hillsville, Virginia : 2004
ISBN 1-5909-0179-7 : 116 pages : CD-R disc : $14.95 (reduced to $9.99)

Reviewed by Carl Bennett
This digital facsimile edition of a 1908 film catalog from Pathé Frères [American] describes 182 short subjects produced by Pathé in France and imported to the United States. Each film description features information on a film’s American title, American release length, the cost of purchase, its order code word (for ordering prints via telegraph), and a film synopsis. Pathé Frères did not open production facilities in the United States until 1910. Several of the film descriptions are accompanied by still photos from the production. Some of the films have survived in nitrate prints such as Dog and His Various Merits (1908) and The Red Spectre (1907), many are lost forever and may be examined only in these written synopses and photos.

We examined the edition on a Macintosh OS X computer with a DVD/CD drive. The Javascript-controlled, web-browser dependent disc operated as intended with OS X browsers Camino, Firefox and Internet Explorer, but the navigation buttons did not work in the Safari browser. The disc should function properly in Windows browsers.

The smallest page view is the default setting, but either a click of the ‘Size’ button or a single click on the page itself quickly changes to another of the three available page view sizes. The page scans are clear, and the type is readable in the two largest page views.

We do have a minor problem with the number of windows that the CD opens. After launching the disc and opening the ‘Open’ page, clicking the ‘Start’ button opens another browser window with navigation bars disabled. Clicking the ‘End’ button opens another window. The logic behind this is that the CD has its own navigation tools and cannot use the browser window’s navigation bar, but we would have preferred that the disc maintain only one open window at a time.

We are pleased with a recent trend toward facsimile editions of publications from the silent era, some may survive only in a single copy (as may be the case with this Pathé catalogue), others may be rare but obtainable from specialty dealers. Collectors and historians alike can have ready access to contemporary reference materials in this digital form.

Unfortunately, Golden Age Collectibles LLC has discontinued business.
 
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