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Reviews of silent film releases on home video.
Copyright © 1999-2017 by Carl Bennett
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The Paleface
(1922)

 

Go West (1925) is another of the underrated Buster Keaton comedies and is worth discovering.

coverKino International
2011 Blu-ray Disc edition

Buster Keaton: The Short Films Collection 1920-1923 (1920-1923), black & white, 390 minutes total, not rated,
including The Paleface (1922), black & white, 20 minutes, not rated.

Kino Lorber, K756, UPC 7-38329-07562-0.
Three single-sided, Region 0 Blu-ray Discs, 1.33:1 aspect ratio image in pillarboxed 16:9 (1920 x 1080 pixels) progressive scan AVCHD MPEG-4 format, ? Mbps average video bit rate, ? kbps audio bit rate, Dolby Digital 2.0 mono sound, English language intertitles, no foreign language subtitles, chapter stops; three slimline BD keepcases in cardboard slipcase, $49.95.
Release date: 12 July 2011.
Country of origin: USA
This remastered collection has been mastered from the best 35mm print materials available. Not all of the source prints are of 35mm quality, however. Some prints are of only good quality as the surviving material is either contrasty and blurred from multiple print duplications or preserved from 16mm reduction prints.

For material that is quite scuffed or otherwise of distracting state, Kino offers viewer-selectable versions that have been digitally cleaned by computer processing.

Among the supplementary content created for this collection are 15 visual essays featuring contributions from Jack Dragga, Ken Gordon, David Kalat, Bruce Lawton, Steve Massa, Ben Model, David B. Pearson, R. Emmet Sweeney and Patricia Eliot Tobias, a series of alternate and deleted shots from Keaton shorts, a presentation of exerpts from comedy films influenced by Keaton, and Keaton cameos in short films of the late 1920s.

 
USA: Click the logomark to purchase this Region-Free Blu-ray Disc edition from Amazon.com. Your purchase supports the Silent Era website.
 
Canada: Click the logomark to purchase this Region-Free Blu-ray Disc edition from Amazon.ca. Your purchase supports the Silent Era website.
 
United Kingdom: Click the logomark to purchase this Region-Free Blu-ray Disc edition from Amazon.co.uk. Your purchase supports Silent Era.
coverKino International
2011 DVD edition

Buster Keaton: The Short Films Collection 1920-1923 (1920-1923), black & white, 390 minutes total, not rated,
including The Paleface (1922), black & white, 20 minutes, not rated.

Kino Lorber, K755, UPC 7-38329-07552-1.
Three 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 mono sound, English language intertitles, no foreign language subtitles, chapter stops; three-disc standard DVD keepcase in cardboard slipcover, $34.95.
Release date: 12 July 2011.
Country of origin: USA

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

This remastered collection has been mastered from the best 35mm print materials available. Not all of the source prints are of 35mm quality, however. Some prints are of only good quality as the surviving material is either contrasty and blurred from multiple print duplications or preserved from 16mm reduction prints.

For material that is quite scuffed or otherwise of distracting state, Kino offers viewer-selectable versions that have been digitally cleaned by computer processing.

Among the supplementary content created for this collection are 15 visual essays featuring contributions from Jack Dragga, Ken Gordon, David Kalat, Bruce Lawton, Steve Massa, Ben Model, David B. Pearson, R. Emmet Sweeney and Patricia Eliot Tobias, a series of alternate and deleted shots from Keaton shorts, a presentation of exerpts from comedy films influenced by Keaton, and Keaton cameos in short films of the late 1920s.

 
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.
 
United Kingdom: Click the logomark to purchase this Region 0 NTSC DVD edition from Amazon.co.uk. Your purchase supports Silent Era.
coverKino on Video
1999 DVD edition

Go West (1925), black & white, 69 minutes, not rated,
with The Paleface (1922), black & white, 21 minutes, not rated.

Kino International, K132DVD, UPC 7-38329-01322-6.
One single-sided, single-layered, Region 0 NTSC DVD disc, 1.33:1 aspect ratio image in windowboxed 4:3 (720 x 480 pixels) interlaced scan MPEG-2 format, ? Mbps average video bit rate, ? kbps audio bit rate, Dolby Digital 2.0 mono sound, English language intertitles, no foreign language subtitles, 5 chapter stops; snapper DVD case (reissued in standard DVD keepcase [retail] and in slimline DVD keepcase [boxset]), $29.99 (reduced to $24.95).
Release date: 23 November 1999.
Country of origin: USA

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

This early DVD edition, produced for home video by David Shepard, was previously released VHS videotape in 1994 and on laserdisc in 1995. The windowboxed video transfer has been produced from a very-good 35mm print, which is relatively clean, with only a moderate amount of dust and speckling.

The film is accompanied by an older music score performed by an anonymous small orchestra.

For information on the other Western-themed Keaton releases in this collection, see our Go West on home video page and our The Scarecrow on home video page.

Despite the older analog mastering, we still recommend this edition of The Paleface on DVD home video.

 
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.
coverNavarre Corporation
2002 DVD edition

Triple Feature Comedy Classics, Volume 2 (1922-1926),
black & white, 147 minutes totak, not rated,
including The Paleface (1922), black & white, 20 minutes, not rated.

Navarre Corporation, 1629, UPC 7-41027-16299-8.
One single-sided, dual-layered, Region 0 NTSC DVD disc, 1.33:1 aspect ratio image in full-frame 4:3 (720 x 480 pixels) interlaced scan MPEG-2 format, 2.5 Mbps average video bit rate, 192 kbps audio bit rate, Dolby Digital 2.0 mono sound, English language intertitles, no foreign language subtitles, 6 chapter stops; standard DVD keepcase, $9.98.
Release date: 12 March 2002.
Country of origin: USA

Ratings (1-10): video: 6 / audio: 5 / additional content: 7 / overall: 5.

The Paleface (1922) and The Blacksmith (1922), two very good Keaton shorts, are the standouts on this disc, which appear to be presented from video transfers originally prepared by David Shepard for home video release by Kino International. Both films have utilized 35mm print materials for the transfers, which feature a broad range of greytones and very good image detail. However, experienced eyes will detect a slightly lower-quality appearance to these shorts on this Navarre disc over the Kino editions, due to the higher MPEG compression of the video information. Both films are accompanied by canned orchestral music scores.

If viewers are more budget than quality conscious, this disc will be a good buy. However, we recommend the Kino International DVD editions of these films over this disc from Navarre.

 
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 BUSTER KEATON films available on home video.
Buster Keaton filmography in The Progressive Silent Film List
 
 
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