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Charlie Chaplin - The Mutual Films Volume 1 (1916-1917) [DVD]
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CHARLIE CHAPLIN THE MUTUAL FILMS VOLUME 1
Behind the Screen | The Rink | Easy Street | The Cure | The Immigrant | The Adventurer
Charlie Chaplin entered movies in 1914. In 1916 he became the highest paid entertainer in the world, when he signed a contract with the Mutual Film Corporation for a salary of $670.000. Mutual built Chaplin his very own studio and allowed him total freedom to make twelve two-reel films during this fruitful twelve-month period. Not surprisingly, he had the time of his life, and recognised this period of filmmaking as the most inventive and liberating of his career.
This disc, the first of two volumes, contains six of the Mutual Films from the slapstick custard pie fights of Behind the Screen, to his sensitive portrayal of a broke and hungry migrant arriving in New York in The Immigrant. In the acclaimed Easy Street Charlie becomes a policeman in a tough neighbourhood, reminiscent of his own impoverished London upbringing.
The films have all been restored and mastered from the best available materials. This exclusive edition of the Mutual Films features brand new scores, written and recorded by acclaimed silent film composer Carl Davis.DVD extras include newsreel footage of Chaplin on a voyage back to Britain, a filmed interview with Carl Davis and biographies of Chaplin's leading lady Edna Purviance and Eric Campbell, Charlie's adversary in the Mutual series.
USA | 1916 - 1917 | black & white | silent with music | 141 minutes | Ratio 1.33:1 | Region 2 DVD
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Top Customer Reviews
Behind the screen
Everybody knows how brilliant and inventive these shorts are so I will devote the rest of this review to the actual DVD.
Picture quality is superb, the prints coming as they do from David Sheppards collection. The music is out of this world being scored by the best composer in silent films Carl Davis. I have tried comparing the scores on each film with the classic Michael Mortilla scores (currently available on the Stonevision label Volumes 8,9 and 10)and must say that I actually prefer these.
As well as the actual six shorts there is an interesting interview with Carl Davis about his scores and how he got involved with scoring Chaplin films. He has apparently written music for each Chaplin Mutual at the rate of two a year for the last few years. There is also a news reel footage showing Chaplins tour of Britain in the 1920's
If you only buy one Chaplin DVD this is the one to buy, you can watch the films again and again and never get bored. This is the DVD every Chaplin fan must own.
I can not wait until the release of the second volume in 2004.
Now if only somebody would do the same to the Harold Lloyd films. Imagine "Safety Last" remastered and released! You know the TV show on BBC2 (mangled as it was with the inane narrator) in the 80's was popular with my friends and I at school. There is a market out there if someone just releases the films!!
These Mutual films are the best short films Chaplin made before he went completely independent. The real classics are "Easy Street" (Charlie becomes a policeman and gasses the big baddie with a street light!) and "The Immigrant" (Charlie arrives in America and finds love), but the other less well-known films here are also very funny and well constructed.
Chaplin's comedy is so graceful and warm. His physical comedy is second to none and, in these films, he is becoming a more sophisticated film-maker. Some of his supporting cast are a bit old fashioned but his leading lady, Edna Purviance, is a delight.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The DVD was delivered promptly. An excellent series of films & even though the films were made a hundred years ago they are superb comedy. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Peter Burgess
Unable to give full review as this item was purchased as a gift for Christmas. The intended recipient loves the old silent comedies so I'm sure this will not disappoint.Published on 13 Nov. 2013 by R. Long
After having bough a collection of Charlie Chaplin short film and having enjoyed it very much I immediately bought this one and wasn't disappointed.Published on 4 Sept. 2013 by Tranquillity
Just as described a good laugh and a great film to see he mans talents I would recommend it to youPublished on 23 May 2013 by Terry
How did I ever live with out this DVD? I have never laughed so much as I did whilst watching these movies. Brilliant acting and great service from the seller.Published on 15 April 2013 by Bugambic
Essential collection for any film fanatic. These are often considered Chaplin's best films and with good reason. Beautifully restored with music composed by Carl Davis.Published on 24 Mar. 2013 by LucyA