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Reviews of silent film releases on home video.
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Polly of the Circus
(1917)

 

The charming Mae Marsh stars in her first film for the Goldwyn studio, with support from Wellington Playter, Vernon Steele, Charles Eldridge, George Trimble and Lucille LaVerne.

Grapevine Video
2013 DVD edition

Polly of the Circus (1917), black & white, 77 minutes, not rated,
with Mabel and Fatty Viewing the World’s Fair at San Francisco, Cal. (1915), black & white, 17 minutes, not rated.

Grapevine Video, no catalog number, UPC 8-42614-10567-8.
One single-sided, single-layered, Region 0 NTSC DVD-R disc, 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, 10 chapter stops; standard DVD keepcase, $16.95.
Release date: 23 May 2013.
Country of origin: USA

Ratings (1-10): video: 3 / audio: 6 / additional content: 4 / overall: 4.

This DVD-R edition has been prepared from a 16mm reduction print that is quite dark in its shadows and rather soft in its image details. The film has been transferred at a faster-than-natural-pace speed, which rushes the film’s action past the viewer.

The film is presented with a good music score performed on virtual pipe organ by David Knudtson.

It’s not great but, until a better disc is released, this is our recommended home video edition of Polly of the Circus.

 
USA: Click the logomark to purchase this Region 0 NTSC DVD-R edition from Amazon.com. Your purchase supports the Silent Era website.
 
This Region 0 NTSC DVD-R edition is available directly from . . .
Alpha Video
2014 DVD edition

Polly of the Circus (1917), black & white, 77 minutes, not rated.

Alpha Home Entertainment, ALP 7284D, UPC 0-89218-72849-4.
One single-sided, single-layered, Region 0 NTSC DVD-R disc, 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; standard DVD keepcase, $7.98.
Release date: 28 January 2014.
Country of origin: USA
This DVD-R edition has likely been mastered from a 16mm reduction print and, from the running time, we suspect that the film has been transferred at a faster-than-natural-pace speed.

The film is likely accompanied by a compiled music score of preexisting recordings.

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