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Criterion Collection: The Gold Rush [Blu-ray]  [US Import]
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Park Circus seem to have got things the wrong way round here. The 1925 original (restored by Kevin Brownlow) is the version that people want to see on Blu Ray, not the 1942 version with Chaplin's commentary. The DVD contains everything, including all the extras and Brownlow's restoration of the 1925 original, whilst the Blu Ray only contains the 1942 version of The Gold Rush. All in all this release is not what it appears to be ... disappointing and deliberately misleading. Caveat emptor.
Who can ever forget the chicken scene, this is the one that has stayed in my mind since I was a very young child in the 1950s/60s and sat with my parents roaring with laughter at his antics. That was the usual clip shown on TV at special times, mostly at Christmas and bank holidays with other excerpts from Disney films et al. You may like to know that Chaplin decided to play the part of the chicken. After several takes using another actor, he wasn't happy with it and said it just didn't look right.
I decided to watch the whole film before wrapping it for my partner's birthday and I can honestly say it was a masterpiece. I didn't realise it was about an hour long with so much more than just the frozen hut in the middle of a blizzard.
Can't wait to see my partner's face when he gets this on his birthday! An absolute gem and worth every penny!
The Criterion Collection release features the 1925 original, along with the 1942 re-edit that omitted the intertitles in favor of narration (by Chaplin) and economically trimmed down of some excess plot developments. While the 1942 version does look better and the editing is better paced, Chaplin's voice-over actually dates the film far worse than the silent original.
Chaplin had a voice which carried well into the sound era. He intuitively knew that silent film was a different art form, however. Thinking about marketing, he seemed to have forgotten that fact. The 1942 version illustrates the artist's discomfort with sound. Chaplin never could wrap his art around the new sound medium, and he pointlessly tells us what we are already seeing. Some may prefer the 1942 version, but my concentration will be on the superior, original version that audiences of 1925 saw.
While The Gold Rush exhibits Chaplin's characteristic pathos, here it is far better balanced with his brand of comedy than any of his other features (when the pathos, often, nearly soaked the films).
Chaplin's increasing need for audience sympathy marred may of his later features. Here, he keeps that need in check, and all for the better.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A masterpiece as I rembered it. Good to have both editions - the silent one and the revisited one with the voice overs (1942). Read morePublished 4 months ago by M3
Warning - the Blu-ray disc of this title is the 1942 revised version of "The Gold Rush", in which Chaplin added a narration, sound effects and a new musical score. Read morePublished 9 months ago by LEE RELPH
Time hasn't been kind to Charlie Chaplins movies Nowadays people don't want their comedies to contain sentiment and Chaplins comedies usually are cloyingly sentimental but that's... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Brendan Keane
Quite possibly Chaplin's most popular and endearing feature length film, it is regarded as a masterpiece by many who have watched it over the years. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Al-13