Unboxing the Silents: Silent Era Goddesses on Bluray, Mae, Marion and Marlene

We have a rich selection to cover this time around. Kino Lorber has released three titles that are new to HD and they feature three of the biggest stars: Mae Murray, Marion Davies and Marlene Dietrich. I will also be hosting a giveaway for the Dietrich title, so stick around for the details!

From Mae Murray, The Delicious Little Devil.

From Marion Davies, Lights of Old Broadway.

From Marlene Dietrich, The Woman One Longs For.

All of them restored and given brand new scores.

As always, thanks to Kino for the review copies. Disclosure: I may earn a small commission from affiliate links in this post. Now, let’s dive into these three releases.

The Delicious Little Devil

You’ll want to see it for: Mae Murray in her prime, Rudolph Valentino on the cusp of stardom

Mae Murray’s 1919 comedy vehicle has already been released on DVD as a companion to Beyond the Rocks but that edition (in my opinion) plays at much too high a frame rate. The new Kino Bluray runs at a much more natural speed and the 4K restoration looks fabulous. There are also new title cards that are considerably more attractive.

Universal has been pulling out all the stops on its film scores and this is no exception. The jazz ensemble score by Nora Kroll-Rosenbaum is peppy and does a lot to elevate the film.

This release is a major upgrade and if you already have the older DVD, you will see a marked improvement if you get this Bluray.

Released on Bluray only and available here.

(This disc is marked Region A.)

Lights of Old Broadway

You’ll want to see it for: A double dose of Marion Davies in a comedic role, Plus multiple color technologies on display.

During the silent era, anyone who was anyone played identical twins and this was Marion Davies’ 1925 stab at the genre. It’s a historical picture with plenty of humor and it is considerably zippier than her other historical film, Little Old New York. A good time will be had, I believe.

We get a 2K transfer with tinted, Technicolor and Handschiegl color sequences intact. So, if you’re interested in the use of color in the silent feature era, this film is a must-buy.

The icing on the cake is an orchestral score by Robert Israel. Israel is one of the greats of silent film music and his scores are always lush and tasteful and this one is no exception.

This Bluray is the full package and can be purchased here.

(This disc is marked all-region.)

The Woman One Longs For

25th September 1928: American comic actor Buster Keaton (1895 – 1966) wearing a baseball strip and boots. (Photo by John Kobal Foundation/Getty Images)

You’ll want to see it for: A silent era Marlene Dietrich, plus European notables Uno Henning and Fritz Kortner.

Marlene Dietrich famously claimed that she was far too young for those creaky silents and she had been a mere schoolgirl when she was picked out of obscurity by Josef von Sternberg. Dietrich can be forgiven for disguising her age considering the entertainment industry’s shabby treatment of women but her silent era career is nothing to be ashamed of. This throbbing German melodrama is a kick and Dietrich looks great in it.

The restored film is lovely and the lavish score by Paul Schumacher adds an expensive-sounding touch of class. The film has its original German title cards with optional English subtitles. Definitely the ideal gift for the Dietrich fan who has everything.

This film will be released June 8, 2021 and can be pre-ordered here.

(This disc is marked Region A.)

Giveaway

Kino has kindly provided three copies of The Woman One Longs For to give away to my readers, so here are the rules:

  1. Leave a comment stating why you would like to see this film.
  2. I will draw three winners on June 7, 2021 and contact them using the email addresses.
  3. The winners will need to provide a U.S.A. mailing address.
  4. If the winners do not respond within five days, I will draw alternates.
  5. Kino will send the film directly to the winners.
  6. The mail is slow, please be patient.

I will need to provide mailing information to Kino in order for the winners to receive their prizes but I will not otherwise store, share or sell your information. The retail value of each disc is approximately $20. Void where prohibited.

That’s it! I look forward to drawing the winning comments.

☙❦❧

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22 Comments

  1. Ryan

    I would like to see this film because I just saw Dietrich in Kino’s great blu ray release of “Judgement at Nuremberg” and she’s very much on my mind lately.

  2. diannerrr

    my last silent film binge was on comedians and i’d love to start another one with the focus on women and i’d love to see an early role of dietrich i wasn’t even aware of until this post! i also have not seen any of mae murray’s work and would like to be able to 🙂

  3. Elizabeth Monje

    I’d love to see any of these films because I’ve never seen them! I became an avid classic movie fan in high school while doing a WWII project for my history class and have since sought different genres of classic films. Recently I’ve really enjoyed silent movies 🙂 Would love to add any of these to my small collection.

  4. James Bourgeois

    It’s Marlene Dietrich! Just watched scene in the rail car. Was smoking ever sexier? And the soundtrack. Perfect.

  5. kenchellenberg

    This early Marlene Dietrich sounds fascinating to me. I’ve seen Blue Angel (in English and German) and all the other Sternberg pictures, and I’ve even heard some of her early cabaret recordings – but I’ve never seen any of the pre-Sternberg pictures and I’m very interested.

  6. theticklefox

    I’m incredibly curious to see The Woman One Longs For because I’ve been a Marlene Dietrich fan for decades but have never seen her silent films. I’m familiar with the notion that Josef von Sternberg “created” her as an icon with their seven film collaborations but I’d love to see what she was before she was saddled with this mythic baggage

  7. leifer1966

    Marlene Dietrich is such an iconic presence in her Sternberg films that it would be fascinating to see her before that transformation took place. Plus, she’s such a visual performer that the silent medium should be the perfect outlet for her charms.

  8. Michael Griffin

    I just finished watching the TCM Garbo Silent Film collection, and would love to start watching Marlene Dietrich movies.

  9. Steven

    Count me as someone who is entering the contest, and I’ll admit my lack of knowledge of Dietrich prior to her American debut in 1930, I have not even watched the Blue Angel since the 1970s! So I don’t recall it too well. So yes, I need educating! I do already have the other two on my “want list”. Oh, thanks to you and Kino for the contest – nice of you both.

  10. Overseas Visitor

    I don’t have an address to compete for the giveaway, just don’t understand why is this in the post:
    “25th September 1928: American comic actor Buster Keaton (1895 – 1966) wearing a baseball strip and boots. (Photo by John Kobal Foundation/Getty Images)”

    Nice anyway to see that there are new releases coming.

  11. robert davis miller

    I would love a copy of the movie! I adore Marlene, and I didn’t even realize she had made silents! I have only a few Kino Lorber titles, and I would love to add one more to the collection.

  12. Kevin Highnight

    I am a silent and classic film lover and collector. But truth be told, I have never seen a Marlene Dietrich film! Of course I’ve heard so much about her, but never anything specific about any of her films. So I have yet to seek out any of her work. I would love to be introduced to her – and what better way than through one of her early films!

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