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More Treasures from American Film Archives 1894-1931 - 50 Films

 

directed by D.W. Griffith, Ernst Lubitsch, J.P. McGowan, Gregory La Cava, Jack Connolly, George Bernard Shaw, Edwin S. Porter, Ashley Miller, Harold L. Muller, Max Fleischer etc.
USA 1894 - 1931

Like the first "Treasures from the American Film Archives" produced by the National Film Preservation Foundation, "More Treasures" takes as its starting point the preservation work of America's film archives. More Treasures covers the years from 1894 through 1931, when the motion pictures from a peepshow curio to the nation's fourth largest industry. This is the period from which fewest American Films survive. Five film archives have made it their mission to save what remains of these first decades of American film: the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, George Eastman House, The Library of Congress, The Museum of Modern Art and the UCLA Film and Television Archive. More Treasures (made possible in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities) reproduces their superb preservation work-fifty films followed by six previews for lost features and serials.

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What the DVD set does is bring together over 50 U.S. early films that have remained unseen outside of museums and festivals for almost a century. These formative years correspond roughly to the "Silent era", although as evident from some of the films here, synchronized sound was a goal from the start. Filmmakers persistently challenged technical limitations, exploring new equipment, photographic techniques and presentation formats.

Disc 1        Disc 2      Disc 3

  out of

DVD Review: Image Entertainment -  Region 0 - NTSC

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Distribution Image Entertainment -  Region 0 - NTSC
Audio English Commentary (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
Time Over 9 hours of material
Intertitles English
Features Release Information:
DVD Production: Image Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Various from (Picture boxed) 1.15:1  to Full Screen (Standard) - 1.33:1

Edition Details:

  • Commentary by 17 historians, critics and preservationists
  • 185-page illustrated book with essays about the films and music
  • Over 500 interactive screens and 3 postcards from the films
  • Newly recorded music contributed by 30 musicians and composers
  • Credits' and 'About Film' text screens for each film
  • Number of discs: 3

DVD Release Date: September 7th, 2004
Cardboard Box with 3 Keep Cases and one book

The 'Treasures Collections' - #1 - 50 films preserved by America's premier archives, #2 - More Treasures from American Film Archives 1894-1931, Treasures III: Social Issues in American Film 1900-1934, Treasures IV: American Avant-Garde Film, 1947-1986 and Treasures 5: The West, 1898-1938.

Comments:

'Wonderful' is an understatement to describe this DVD set. I never owned the first 'Treasures..." and feel I definitely should now. What we are privy to in this boxset is the primordial soup of the medium of film.... experimentation, initially conceived ideas still in place today, trailers for lost films, first use of coordinated sound, first use of color, early advertising films, international newsreels, innovative animation and much more. The commentaries are magnificent and extremely important to appreciating and understanding what you are watching.

The book (almost exactly the size and shape of a DVD) is the 'programme notes' for the films that are being shown. It is golden. A wealth of information useful to browse while you are watching or preparing to turn on your Home theatre system with keen anticipation.

The image varies from severly damaged (as expected) to surprisingly intact. But aspect ratios have been maintained and occasional black bars down the side are exhibited dependant on the film and its original format.

Menu navigation is easy and the best option is the "Play All" where you can simply sit back and watch it unfold in front of you. Commentaries can be accessed on the fly.

All the films are presented with two-track sound. The newly recorded musical accompaniments are glorious, however those with pre-existing sound tracks are monaural and recorded on two track mono. Commentaries are in two track stereo. There are no subtitles and all inter-titles are in English. 

It is so refreshing to see what can be done with the DVD medium as opposed to creating a stream of "Legally Blond' discs that undoubtedly will always outsell something like this. This DVD Boxset is so professionally created that it almost brings me to tears. This is the history and evolution of film. It can be given nothing butout of  

Gary W. Tooze

Associated Reading  (CLICK COVERS or TITLES for more information)

 

Program 1

 

Keen highlights for me where Dickson's Experimental; Sound Film (circa 1894), D.W. Griffith's "The Country Doctor", the Early Advertising Films and The Hazards of Helen (great commentary!), but it is all fascinating.

 

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:

Runtime Approx 3 hours
Video

Average Bitrate: 4.75 mb/s
NTSC 720x480  

Chapters : 13



DVD Menus
and Sample of Title screens

 


Sample Screen Captures

 

 


Early Advertising

 

 


 

 

 


 

 

Program 2

 

Highlights are the Early Color films, At the Foot of the Flatiron, the animated "There It Is" and "A Bronx Morning", The Streets of New York, and The Clash of the Wolves (75 minutes)!

 

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:
Runtime Approx. 2 3/4 hours
Video

Average Bitrate: 4.75 mb/s
NTSC 720x480

Chapters : 12



DVD Menus

 


Screen Captures

 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 

 


 

 


 

 

 

Programme 3

 

The Hollywood Promotional Films impacted me a lot, especially seeing the "Greed" footage which will have to suffice until Warner deigns to put it out on DVD. A lot of what is in programme 3 expresses the shift from the east to the west of the US - most prominently Hollywood. The Trailer for Lost Films are also fascinating... in fact - it is all amazing!   
 

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:

Runtime Approx 3 hours
Video

Average Bitrate: 4.78 mb/s
NTSC 720x480

Chapters : 14



DVD Menus

 


Screen Captures

 

 


On the set of 'Greed'

 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

CLICK logo to order

   

  

Distribution Image Entertainment -  Region 0 - NTSC

 




 

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Gary Tooze

Many Thanks...