North American Hitchcock fans can rejoice! After years of enduring junky public domain editions, four of his silents and one talkie have received quality release and I will be giving you a whirlwind tour.
As always, thanks to Kino Lorber for the review copy.
Oh and before we get started, understand that these are Hitchcock films but they are not “Hitchcock” films in the sense of The Lodger and Blackmail. The Ring, The Farmer’s Wife, Champagne, The Manxman and The Skin Game show that Hitch was not locked into suspense at this point in his career but it’s better to go into this set understanding that there will be a decided shortage of corpses, thieves and spies.
As usual, I will be showing off the picture quality and discussing the scores but this is not a review of individual films in the collection.
As usual, other than cropping the pillarboxes, I have not altered these Bluray screen caps in any way.
The Ring (1927)
The ring of the title refers to the boxing ring.
This film has a fine piano score by Meg Morley.
The Farmer’s Wife (1928)
Hitch goes bucolic.
The film has a synth score by Jon Mirsalis.
Hitch wanders into Cecil B. DeMille and Ernst Lubitsch’s domain.
This film features a score by Ben Model.
The Manxman (1929)
It’s a Hall Caine story, which pretty much tells you everything you need to know.
This film features a score by Andrew Earle Simpson.
The Skin Game (1931)
A talkie but we’ll allow it.
So, as you can see, the image quality is pretty high.
This collection is a very welcome upgrade from those cheapo editions we have had to put up with over the years. It’s interesting to see Hitchcock play around with assorted genres and this collection is also an excellent showcase for four talented accompanists doing top notch work.
This is a definite must-buy for the Hitchcock fan who has everything.
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