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Reviews of silent film releases on home video.
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Mabel’s Strange Predicament
(1914)

 

In their first film together, Mabel Normand and Charles Chaplin are part of the usual Keystone chaos. Harry McCoy, Chester Conklin and Al St. John support.

Flicker Alley
2010 DVD edition

Chaplin at Keystone (1914), black & white, 590 minutes total, not rated
including Mabel’s Strange Predicament (1914), black & white, 12 minutes, not rated.

Flicker Alley, FA0018, UPC 6-17311-67579-9, ISBN 1-893967-57-3.
Four single-sided, dual-layered, Region 0 NTSC DVD discs, 1.33:1 aspect ratio image in full-frame 4:3 (720 x 480 pixels) interlaced scan MPEG-2 format, ? Mbps average video bit rate, ? kbps audio bit rate, Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo sound, English language intertitles, no foreign language subtitles, chapter stops; four slimline DVD keepcases in cardboard slipcase, $79.95.
Release date: 26 October 2010.
Country of origin: USA

Ratings (1-10): video: 7 / audio: 8 / additional content: 8 / overall: 8.

This quality DVD edition has been mastered from a restoration conflation of a 35mm nitrate print and a 35mm nitrate duplicate negative held by the British Film Institute, which has been transferred by Cineteca di Bologna at L’Immagine Ritrovita in Italy. The intertitles were digitally reset with texts from a rerelease print and with two original Keystone cards. The results are very-good to excellent, with some processing flaws and print wear remaining in the nitrate positive print.

The film is accompanied by a music score performed by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra.

The collection’s supplemental material includes Charlie et sa Belle [Charlie’s White Elephant] (1916), Inside the Keystone Project (2010) documenting the Chaplin Project (10 minutes), Silent Traces: The Keystone Locations (2010) with John Bengtson, author of Silent Traces (12 minutes), and a stills gallery.

Overall, the improvement in quality over previous home video editions is so great that you’ll toss your other Keystone Chaplin discs when you see this collection. Highly recommended!

 
USA: Click the logomark to purchase this Region 0 NTSC DVD edition from Amazon.com. Your purchase supports the Silent Era website.
 
Canada: Click the logomark to purchase this Region 0 NTSC DVD edition from Amazon.ca. Your purchase supports the Silent Era website.
Other silent era CHARLES CHAPLIN films available on home video.

Other MABEL NORMAND films available on home video.

Other KEYSTONE comedy films available on home video.

Other SHORT COMEDY FILMS of the silent era available on home video.
Charles Chaplin filmography in The Progressive Silent Film List
 
 
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