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Treasures III: Social Issues in American Film, 1900-1934

4.7 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

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Total price: $211.46
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Editorial Reviews

See the movies that changed America! Prohibition, abortion, unions, atheism, the vote for women, organized crime, loan sharking, juvenile justice, homelessness, police corruption, immigration -- in their first decades, movies brought an astonishing range of issues to the screen. Whether exposing abuse or lampooning reform, films put a human face on social problems and connected with audiences in a new way. Movies were entertainment with the power to persuade.

This third groundbreaking set in the Treasures from American Archives series presents over 48 films never before seen on video. Over 12 hours of rare cartoons, newsreel stories, serial episodes, advocacy films, and features. Preserved by the George Eastman House, the Library of Congress, the Museum of Modern Art, the National Archives, and the UCLA Film & Television Archive.

Commentary by 20 experts, Digitally mastered from the finest archival sources, Newly recorded music in two-track stereo More than 600 interactive screens about the films and music, 200-page illustrated book with film notes and credits, Postcards from the films

Films include: The Black Hand, How They Rob Men in Chicago, The Voice of the Violin, The Usurer's Grip, From the Submerged, Hope-A Red Cross Seal Story, The Cost of Carelessness, LIghts and Shadows in a City of a Million, The Soul of Youth, A Call for Help from Sing Sing!, 6 Million American Children Are Not in School, Kansas Saloon Smashers, Why Mr. Nation Wants a Divorce, Trial Marriages, Manhattan Trade School for Girls, The Strong Arm Squad of the Future, A Lively Affair, A Suffragette in Spite of Himself, On to Washington, The Hazards of Helen, Where Are My Children?, The Courage of the Commonplace, Poor Mrs. Jones!, The Crime of Carelessness, Listen to Some Words of Wisdom, Cecil B. DeMille's The Godless Girl, Emigrants Landing at Ellis Island, An American in the Making, Ramonda, Redskin, The United Snakes of America, 100% American, Bud's Recruit, The Reawakening and more!

The acclaimed Treasures series has earned raves and awards for the past seven years including the National Society of Film Critics' Film Heritage Award and the VSDA's Best in Show Non-Theatrical Award.


Special Features

  • 12 1/4 hours on 4 discs
  • Audio commentary by 20 experts
  • Digitally mastered from the finest archival sources
  • Newly recorded music in two-track stereo
  • More than 600 interactive screens about the films and music
  • 200-page illustrated book with film notes and credits
  • Postcards from the films
  • Playable worldwide

Product Details

  • Format: Box set, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Image Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: October 16, 2007
  • Run Time: 738 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000T84GOY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #62,919 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Treasures III: Social Issues in American Film, 1900-1934" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

The films included are listed in the product description but not described. I do that here with information taken from the brochure about the DVD set:

Disc 1 - THE CITY REFORMED
The Black Hand (1906, 11 minutes) - Earliest surviving gangster film. Two members of a gang write a threatening letter to a butcher, demanding money, or else they will harm his family and his shop.
How They Rob Men in Chicago (1900, 25 seconds) - An elderly man is robbed in Chicago, but some money is left behind on his unconscious person. A policeman happens by, takes the money, and leaves the victim unattended.
The Voice of the Violin (1909, 16 minutes) - A terrorist plot foiled by the power of music.
The Usurer's Grip (1912, 15 minutes) - Melodrama arguing for consumer credit co-operatives.
From the Submerged (1912, 11 minutes) - Drama about homelessness and slumming parties.
Hope - A Red Cross Seal Story (1912, 14 minutes) - A town mobilizes to fight TB.
The Cost of Carelessness (1913, 13 minutes) - Traffic safety film for Brooklyn children.
Lights and Shadows in a City of a Million (1920, 7 minutes) - Charitable plea for the Detroit community fund.
Six Million Children are Not in School (1922, 7 minutes) - Newsreel inspired by census data.
The Soul of Youth (1920, 80 minutes) - William Desmond Taylor's feature about an orphan reclaimed for society through the court of Judge Ben Lindsey.
A Call for Help from Sing Sing (1934, 3 minutes) - Warden Lawes speaks out for wayward teens.

Disc 2 - NEW WOMEN
Kansas Saloon Smashers (1901, 1 minute) - Carrie Nation swings her axe.
Why Mr. Nation Wants a Divorce (1902, 2 minutes) - Role reversal temperance spoof.
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This third volume in the series of Treasures from American archives is the best so far, in my opinion, and is a special treat for every serious silent film enthusiast. Each of the four discs in this great set has an excellent selection of films varying from just one minute in length, to feature films over 2 hours, and spanning three important decades, 1900-1934, which saw some of the biggest changes and developments in recent history. This set is both a visual documentary of those events and changes in American society in the early 20th century, as well as an education, but at the same time also immensely entertaining. This is especially the case with the five outstanding feature films in this set, as well as some of the shorter 10-minute films from around 1912, two of them featuring Mary Pickford.

Other famous names in this set include the 2-hour drama "The Godless Girl" directed by the legendary Cecil B. De Mille in 1928, at which time he had perfected the art of a sophisticated and thoroughly entertaining movie while still getting across an important message. That message is atheism versus religion, as well as exposing the harsh and unfair conditions in some juvenile reformatories at that time, but far from being lecturing in any way, "The Godless Girl" has powerful drama, tragedy, romance, great action and one of the most gripping and almost unbearably suspenseful, drawn-out climaxes I've seen in a long time. The film is on the disc with the theme "Toil and Tyranny" along with other shorter silent films depicting various other facets of American life, good and bad, which became the subject of films, and in the hands of innovative filmmakers such as Lois Weber, the theme of birth control is poignantly portrayed in "Where Are My Children" on the disc entitled `New Women'.
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Just a note to clear up the region-code confusion mentioned at the end of a previous review. The Treasures III DVD set has NO region code (that is, it's "Region 0," not "Region 1"). However, part of the first pressing WAS mistakenly coded "Region 1." These discs have been replacd in undistributed sets, but for any buyers outside North America who have trouble playing these early discs, the National Film Preservation Foundation will send region-free replacement copies at no charge; see their website,[...], and the form at [...].
(I'm curator of the set, so pardon the 5 stars, which I'd award to the 20 audio commentators.)
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By Ukegirl on November 23, 2007
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I now have American Treasures Sets 1, 2, and 3 and 3 is by far the best of the lot. 4 discs filled with fantastic rare older films, silents and early sound pictures centered around social change and politics, transferred from 35mm masters, with new scores (not all piano this time!), extensive background notes and commentaries, and a great book to accompany the films this set is superlative entertainment and education.

For those of us who love silents this set will keep you enthralled for days or weeks. You will learn so much about early 20th century history! Every high school history teacher should show some of the films in this set. Some of my favorite films in this set are From The Submerged, 100% American, The Soul of Youth (surviving William Desmond Taylor film), Poor Mrs. Jones!, The Godless Girl, Where Are My Children?, Ramona, Redskin, Bud's Recruit (King Vidor's earliest surviving silent), Trial Marriages, and The Voice of the Violin.

About the only negative I can come up with for this set is that they didn't get permission to use Carl Davis' magnificent orchestral score for Cecil B. DeMille's last silent The Godless Girl. This score was on Kevin Brownlow's version aired in the UK. What's on the Treasures 3 set for this film is a piano score which, though nice enough, doesn't begin to enhance the film like Mr. Davis' orchestral score. If anyone is buying this set just to get The Godless Girl they might be disappointed to learn that Carl Davis' score is not the one on the film.

Definitely put Treasures 3 on your buying list. You will love it.
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