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Charlie Chaplin Short Comedy Classics - The Complete Restored Essanay & Mutual Collection

17 customer reviews

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
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(Jul 08, 2003)
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$398.99 $222.99

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Editorial Reviews

See one of America's best-loved comedians at his finest with this side-splitting 7-disc DVD collection! Sixteen hilarious Essanay comedies from the beginning of Chaplin's career, including "His New Job," "The Tramp" and "Triple Trouble", twelve two-reel comedies Chaplin made the following year with the Mutual Company, including such classics as "Easy Street," "The Vagabond" and "The Rink." Fully restored and transferred from premier quality 35mm negatives with new digital stereo scores. As well as a bonus disc with "Chaplin's Goliath: In Search of Scotland's Forgotten Star," a 54-minute 1996 documentary, traces the fascinating story of Chaplin's "heavy" co-star in the Mutual comedies, Eric Campbell, including rare outtakes, screen tests, and much more.

Special Features

  • Includes:
  • Chaplin's Essanay Comedies, Vols. 1-3
  • The Chaplin Mutuals, Vols. 1-3
  • Chaplin's Goliath: In Search of Scotland's Forgotten Star

Product Details

  • Actors: Charlie Chaplin, Charles Chaplin
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Black & White, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 7
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Image Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: July 8, 2003
  • Run Time: 951 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00009Q4VX
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #143,533 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Charlie Chaplin Short Comedy Classics - The Complete Restored Essanay & Mutual Collection" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

66 of 68 people found the following review helpful By Mark Pollock on January 7, 2004
Make no bones about it - this is the BEST collection currently available of Chaplin's Essanay and Mutual films. The quality is superb, the soundtracks reasonably good, and the documentary on Eric Campbell is a delight. If you already know these films but have hesitated to buy these dvds, this is the perfect opportunity. More importantly, don't buy any other company's cheapo version of these films. The discs from Laserlight, Madacy, Delta, and Koch video don't hold a candle to these. In fact, it would be a good idea to hold a candle to those other versions.
So, that's the good news. Now for the bad news.
First of all, the transfers for the Mutual films were done at the infancy of the dvd medium. The encoding for dvds has gotten much better, which means that the details of these great restorations are sometimes lost in digital noise. Zooming in even a little makes this very apparant. These films deserved to be re-encoded for dvd, and it is an absolute shame that Image did not see fit to do this. The films look fine when shown full screen, with only a few exceptions, but those exceptions really stand out. (Example - each film opens with a text card giving some information about the film. These text cards are often almost unreadable due to the fact that the encoder couldn't handle the detail.)
Second, these are the most complete versions of these films available, which is great, but unfortunately there are several bits missing. In "One A.M.", there is a whole sequence with Chaplin in mountain climbing gear that is missing. "Easy Street" is missing a title card and some shots. You get the idea.
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52 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Paul J. Mular TOP 1000 REVIEWER on June 24, 2006
Up until 2006, these were the best copies on DVD. But now David Shepard and Image Entertainment have restored the missing footage and re-mastered the films , addressing the complaints mentioned below.

So buy the "Mutual Restored 90th Anniversary Edition" instead of this edition.

The Essanay comedies are not part of the new restoration, but can be purchased separately.
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33 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Robert Badgley on June 22, 2004
I've looked through this wonderful release of Chaplin material with a detailed eye.
I've found it on the whole to be a well deserved and well done presentation of some of the most important works in comic cinema history.
I breathed a sigh of relief on seeing the quality of the restored prints as one never knows sometimes what one is going to get with
so-called "restored" films.
I do have some criticism,as picky as they might seem.
Mr.Pollocks' review(a couple previous to this one) makes a couple of rather good points.He mentioned a "mountain climbing outfit" scene in One A.M. that seems to have been forgotten,and some title cards in another that have been excised.
Well I have only viewed the Blackhawk/Van Buren releases for years so I cannot say I have ever seen this particular scene.If it exists,and I have no reason to doubt Mr.Pollock that it does,then it and any other scene not extant in these releases should have been included.As far as title cards go I am not that concerned about leaving some out because the action usually speaks volumes anyways and title cards I find can actually get in the way instead of helping as they were originally intended.
The Van Buren music excluded from the set as also mentioned? Well,as quaint and cute as it was, it was of its time and I'm not too bothered by its' removal.I DO agree that the music throughout could have had a bit more punch to it.
I find that what we have here,as far as the Mutual releases are concerned, are more or less just re-releases of the original Blackhawk/Van Buren film versions.Some wonderful work has been done to restore their condition though,to add original tinting where applicable,etc.But it seems the Blackhawks have been the basis around which Mr.
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35 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Robin Simmons VINE VOICE on June 26, 2003
CHARLIE CHAPLIN SHORT COMEDY CLASSICS -- The complete restored 1917 Essanay and Mutual Collection. Starting around 1920, and lasting for over two decades, Charlie Chaplin was the most famous person on the planet (until his iconic image was usurped by Mickey Mouse). This fabulous collection of 28 films from Essanay and Mutual shows the evolution of Chaplin's screen alter ego -- slapstick, social concerns and sentiment -- and the reason for his global celebrity. In 1914 when Chaplin entered movies, he was an English pantomimist unknown to American audiences. His first film contract was for $150 a week -- a very good sum for the time. Only two years later, he signed with the Mutual company to make twelve two-reelers for $670,000, becoming the highest paid entertainer in history. Years later Chaplin wrote: "Fulfilling the Mutual contract ... was the happiest period of my career." Here are all the Essanay and Mutual classics (1915 - 1917) from His New Job to Easy Street. Fully restored and with the projection speed corrected, these rarely seen classics on six discs are the very best transfers available. All have new digital scores. A seventh bonus disc is Chaplin's Goliath: In Search of Scotland's Forgotten Star, a charming look at Eric Campbell.
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