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4 Horror Gems from the silient era plus an original documentary. This includes an all new restoration of THE CAT AND THE CANARY and for the first time on DVD, Bret Wood's KINGDOM OF SHADOWS.
Please note, KINGDOM OF SHADOWS is only available as part of this box set.
"Kino's spine-tingling new set, "American Silent Horror Collection," debuting Tuesday on DVD, features four chillers that beautifully illustrate the skill and complexity of silent cinema." - Susan King, THE LOS ANGELES TIMES
Considered by many to be the first great American horror film, John S.
Robertson's Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde allowed stage legend John Barrymore to
deliver his first virtuoso performance on film.
Blending historic charm with grim naturalism, this version of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde is one of the more faithful of the many screen adaptations of Stevenson's story, recounting a visionary scientist's ill-fated attempts to unleash the human mysteries that dwell beneath the shell of the civilized self.
Mastered from a 35mm negative and complemented with a wealth of supplemental material, this Kino on Video edition beautifully showcases the dramatic brilliance and gruesome thrills of this influential American classic.
(Musical score compiled by Rodney Sauer and performed by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra) Hide this content.
In a role that established him as one of the most dynamically terrifying performers of the silent screen, Lon Chaney stars in THE PENALTY, a grotesque thriller from director Wallace Worsley (The Hunchback of Notre Dame).
When an incompetent doctor amputates the legs of a young boy, he has no idea that the youth will grow up to be the immoral and embittered Blizzard, a criminal mastermind who orchestrates a bizarre and heinous plot to avenge himself upon his malefactor. THE PENALTY teems with irony and sexual menace as Blizzard befriends the surgeon's daughter and serves as an artist's model for her sculptural rendition of Satan, waiting for his moment to show the depth of his demonic desires.
In playing the devious Blizzard, Chaney tightly harnessed his legs within a pair of leather stumps, flawlessly rendering the physical disfigurement that so profoundly echoes the misshapen mind that drives this sadistic character toward his violent destiny. As Chaney biographer Michael Blake says, "One has to wonder if the intensity Lon brought to this role might have been due in part to the pain produced by his harness."
This special KINO edition is loaded with supplemental features which better one's understanding of THE PENALTY, Lon Chaney and the great lengths to which he went to craft such a feverishly villainous performance. Hide this content.
THE PHOTOPLAY RESTORATION Produced by Patrick Stanbury and Kevin Brownlow
A decaying mansion and a stormy night are the archetypal setting for mystery and chaos when a pack of greedy relatives gather for the reading of a twenty-year-old will. But before the West fortune can be handed down, the family must endure a night in the cavernous manor, unnerved by the news that an escaped lunatic is at large.
So clever and stylish that it would appear to be the wellspring of all "old dark house" mysteries, THE CAT AND THE CANARY was in 1927 already a theatrical chestnut among similar popular melodramas. Even so, THE CAT is a milestone of the American horror film, thanks to the ingenuity of its director, Paul Leni. One of the first film artists imported from Germany by Hollywood, Leni invigorated this stage-bound genre with expressionist flair, transforming conventional material into a visual feast.
This Kino edition was meticulously restored from original nitrate prints by Photoplay Productions, and features a new orchestral score by Neil Brand.Hide this content.
ONLY AVAILABLE AS PART OF "THE AMERICAN SILENT HORROR COLLECTION"
Narrated by Academy Award Winner Rod Steiger (In the Heat of the Night, On the Waterfront, The Loved One), KINGDOM OF SHADOWS is a haunting, sometimes shocking documentary that explores the evolution of horror in world cinema—a danse macabre of religion, science, carnivals, sex, nightmares, monstrosity and death.
More than fifty thrillers (the best-known as well as the most obscure) are surveyed, including Nosferatu, The Golem, Haxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages, The Student of Prague, Electrocuting an Elephant, The Phantom of the Opera, Dante’s Inferno, The Bells, Waxworks, Warning Shadows, and Leaves from Satan’s
KINGDOM OF SHADOWS explores the sources of our fears and reveals the birth of the frightful conventions from which the modern-day horror movie has evolved, including the menacing shadows of the German Expressionists, the sympathetic monsters of Lon Chaney (“The Man of a Thousand Faces”) and the psychological terrors envisioned by Edgar Allan Poe. Essential viewing for every aficionado of silent movies or classic horrors, KINGDOM OF SHADOWS illuminates one of the most fascinating chapters of film history.
U.S. 1998 B&W/Color 70 Min.
Narrated by Rod Steiger
Written & Directed by Bret Wood
Executive Producer Dan Clark
Music Composed & Performed by Joseph Turrin
Special Thanks to Felicia Feaster, Tim Lanza, Douglas Robinson, David Shepard
Copyright 1998 Kino International Corp.