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  • Forgotten Silver
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Forgotten Silver


Price: $48.77 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Forgotten Silver + Zelig
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Product Details

  • Actors: Beatrice Ashton, Costa Botes, Peter Corrigan (II), Marguerite Hurst, Leonard Maltin
  • Directors: Costa Botes
  • Format: Color, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
  • DVD Release Date: October 26, 2004
  • Run Time: 53 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001ZX0JM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #85,383 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Forgotten Silver" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

This dryly funny mockumentary about the lost work of a pioneering New Zealand film genius is probably one of the best examples of the faux-documentary genre. In fact, it was so successful that when it originally aired on New Zealand television, hundreds of viewers bought the premise hook, line, and sinker. If you didn't know any better yourself, it's entirely possible you might be duped into believing the extremely tall tale of one Colin MacKenzie, an ambitious filmmaker who made the world's first talking movie (years before "The Jazz Singer"), invented color film, and created a huge biblical epic that would put Cecil B. DeMille and D.W. Griffith to shame. Filmmaker Peter Jackson ("Heavenly Creatures") shrewdly inserts himself into the film via his documentation of the "discovery" of McKenzie's lost epic, which for years was preserved in a garden shed. This hidden gold mine, which Jackson likens to finding "Citizen Kane" in an attic, will forever rewrite the history of film--a fact to which both critic Leonard Maltin and studio exec Harvey Weinstein eagerly attest. Jackson chronicles MacKenzie's fame through newspaper accounts, still photos, and keenly inventive footage showing both the behind-the-scenes shenanigans of MacKenzie's "Salome" as well as clips from that crowning film achievement; if you don't believe the filmmakers, actor Sam Neill is on hand to vouch for its importance. Jackson has the self-importance of film documentaries down pat, from the "re-creations" of past events through photos and voiceovers (the film's narration is properly stentorian), and never tips his hand once through the interviews with film historians as well as MacKenzie's "wife." Even nonfilm historians and aficionados will be won over by Jackson's subtle humor and inventiveness--you'll remember the story of Colin MacKenzie for a long time to come. "-Mark Englehart"

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 25 customer reviews
I was mesmorized by this tale of family, struggle, love, loss, and redemption.
Mazkoor Shariff
Forget The Last Broadcast and the now infamous Blair Witch Project, Peter Jackson's opus to a fictitious film maker shows us true genius behind the camera.
Roy
They gave you this dream about life that is normally missing in most films, yet these guys were never alive for you to believe in.
A. Gyurisin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Lawrance M. Bernabo HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on February 15, 2004
Format: DVD
Continuing my quest to screen all of the films of director Peter Jackson, in order to see how a guy who started out making bloody zombie flicks in New Zealand eventually got to be a three-time Academy Award nominee for best director who is the favorite to finally bring Oscar home for "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King," I have come to "Forgotten Silver," the 1997 mockumentary made by Jackson and Costa Bostas. The obvious comparison is to the work of Christopher Guest and his cohorts, who brought us "This is Spinal Tap," "Waiting for Guffman," "Best in Show" and "A Mighty Wind. But given the dry wit that runs throughout "Forgotten Silver" the film that springs to my mind is Woody Allen's "Zelig."
How dry is the wit? Well, when "Forgotten Silver" aired on New Zealand television it convinced quite a few Kiwi that they had a new national hero in Colin McKenzie, the lost film director who is the topic of this effort. This happened even though McKenzie is played by Thomas Robins, a New Zealand actor who was the original Host of the New Zealand, Saturday morning Breakfast show, "Squirt" (his only other film role has been as Deagol in "The Return of the King").

There is fun to be had in showing "Forgotten Silver" to unsuspecting friends, family and people dragged in off of the street, to see at what point they catch on that there is something amiss here. The idea is that Collin McKenzie was a cinematic innovator who came up with the first mechanized camera, the first full-length feature film with sound, and the first color film. Unfortunately while doing these things he forgot to invent subtitles and accidentally invented the porn film.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 28, 2004
Format: DVD
Watching this mockumentary, it isn't hard to see why the New Zealand public thought it was for real when it was first aired. Peter Jackson, the endearingly hobbitlike director of fantasy epic "Lord of the Rings," tried his hand at something a bit different aside from his splatter-gore horror films, and the eerie "Heavenly Creatures." Okay, more than a "bit" different.

It documents the discovery of a film by the cinematic wizard Colin McKenzie, who was born in New Zealand in the 1800s, died in a somewhat deteriorated state, and made amazing breakthroughs in filmmaking in the early 20th century, that were never seen for various reasons... until they were unearthed in a shed. Specifically, the epic "Salome," which had some rather odd financial backers (mobsters and a clown, for example) Now there is a documentary being filmed, with interviews and pieces of footage from the "forgotten silver" of Colin McKenzie, the most brilliant filmmaker who never lived!

Jackson himself is in this in more than a cameo appearance (in all his films, he appears for at least a few seconds), as the filmmaker; Miramax big man Harvey Weinstein, actor Sam Neill, and critic Leonard Maltin also appear as themselves, which makes the film seem even more real. (Especially when Weinstein claims he'll be distributing "Salome") If I hadn't known that this WAS a mockumentary, I might've thought it was for real.

Even though the tongue-in-cheek attitude marks this as a mockumentary, it's very well-done and detailed. The way Jackson fake-aged the footage from the old films, it's totally believable that these have been sitting in a shed for decades.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By audrey TOP 500 REVIEWER on September 27, 2001
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Forgotten Silver is a little gem of a mockumentary. Unlike other films in the genre such as Waiting for Guffman or This is Spinal Tap, a true documentary tone is maintained throughout the film. It's only as one hears that the subject of the film, Colin McKenzie, developed the first tracking shot, the first color film, the first close-up, the first feature-length epic, the film of the *real* first human flight, etc. that one becomes suspicious .... who *is* this guy?! Did he really get arrested for stealing 2000 eggs? After all, it *does* take 12 eggs to emulsify one minute of film .... Interviews with industry experts such as Harvey Weinstein, Leonard Maltin and Sam Neill lend authenticity to this project. You'll have to watch it at least twice to appreciate the hoax, and it is a hoot to watch it with someone who doesn't know the truth.
DVD extras are worthwhile: director's comments over the film; 'Behind the Bull', a featurette with explanatory comments by the directors and technical crew; a number of deleted scenes and stills.
This is a worthy addition to a fun genre, and the DVD extras make this purchase worthwhile.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 14, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
I've been in the Motion Picture business for twenty years and it fooled me. So much so that for 12 hours I was searching my film reference books, newspapers, sock drawer and finally the internet before I got clued in. Great fun. Very well done. "War of the Worlds meets Spinal Tap."
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 20, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
This film is a classic. You must see it if you love film history. A cross between "Zelig" and "Spinal Tap", it's provocative, inspiring and technically amazing. We have screened "Forgotten Silver" many times for friends and it never fails to confuse, bemuse and amuse. It is an essential film for fooling the pretentious and puzzling the naive. Don't tell your audience anything about it, except that it's short and worth seeing and then sit back and watch them out of the corner of your eye to see when they "get it". Have fun!
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