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Silent Era Films on Home Video
Reviews of silent film releases on home video.
Copyright © 1999-2017 by Carl Bennett
and the Silent Era Company.
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Shadows
(1922)

 

In Shadows (1922), Lon Chaney portrays another of the character roles that dubbed him The Man of a Thousand Faces, a Chinese laundry worker who is caught in a tangle of extortion and small-town prejudice.

coverImage Entertainment
2000 DVD edition

Outside the Law (1920), black & white, 75 minutes, not rated,
with Shadows (1922), color-toned black & white, 68 minutes, not rated.

Film Preservation Associates, distributed by Image Entertainment, ID5838DSDVD, UPC 0-14381-58382-3.
One single-sided, dual-layered, Region 1 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, 15 chapter stops; snapper DVD case, $24.99.
Release date: 27 June 2000.
Country of origin: USA

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

Normally, the DVD editions produced by David Shepard are fine examples of silent era films brought to home video. And this quality windowboxed presentation has apparently been mastered from what appears to be, at least, a fine-grain 16mm reduction print if not a 35mm print — the same video transfer that was released on laserdisc and VHS videotape in the 1990s. The video transfer on the older disc still looks pretty good, even on high-definition equipment.

The film is accompanied by a custom music score performed on theater organ.

We recommend this Image edition until a better one come along.

 
USA: Click the logomark to purchase this Region 1 NTSC DVD edition from Amazon.com. Your purchase supports the Silent Era website.
 
Canada: Click the logomark to purchase this Region 1 NTSC DVD edition from Amazon.ca. Your purchase supports the Silent Era website.
coverAlpha Video
2003 DVD edition

Shadows (1922), black & white, 70 minutes, not rated.

Alpha Video, ALP 4101D, UPC 0-89218-41019-1.
One single-sided, single-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, ? Mbps average video bit rate, 192 kbps audio bit rate, Dolby Digital 2.0 mono sound, English language intertitles, no foreign language subtitles, chapter stops; standard DVD keepcase, $6.98.
Release date: 21 January 2003.
Country of origin: USA

Ratings (1-10): video: 5 / audio: 4 / additional content: 0 / overall: 5.

This budget edition is watchable, with a good transfer of a very-good (what appears to be) 16mm reduction print that is compromised by a number of splices, dust, speckling, and some contrastiness, but is not a bad disc for the moderate cost.

The film is accompanied by a canned orchestral music track.

After looking at both of these noted editions, we would recommended the Image edition noted above over this watchable but not ideal disc.

 
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.
coverMiracle Pictures
2003 DVD edition

Shadows (1922), black & white, 90 minutes, not rated.

Miracle Pictures, unknown catalog number, unknown UPC number.
One single-sided, single-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, ? Mbps average video bit rate, ? kbps audio bit rate, Dolby Digital 2.0 mono sound, English language intertitles, no foreign language subtitles, chapter stops; slimline DVD keepcase?, $6.98.
Release date: 3 March 2003.
Country of origin: USA
A Silent Era reader brought this edition to our attention. Considering the home video company, we have to assume that the film has been transferred from a 16mm reduction print.

There is no musical accompaniment for this presentation. Other discs from this company are extremely cheaply made and don’t play in some older DVD players.

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

Other ASIAN-THEMED FILMS of the silent era available on home video.

 
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