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Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
Lonesome (Criterion Collection)
Format: DVD|Change
Price:$18.49+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on August 9, 2017
I discovered that there was one of the last silent movie theaters in my neighborhood when I was 14 years old. I went all the time and was usually the only young person there. I know and love silent films.
I also collect 100+ year old Coney Island postcards. So imagine my delight when the film Lonesome 1928 turned out to be a delightfully rewarding film that is set in the Coney Island that existed when it was one of the most amazing places on Earth.
The director Paul Fejos was a maveric visionary among Hollywood directors and this film displays his talents in abundance. He uses editing and design derived from his awareness of avante-garde and European cinema with exciting camera angles and impressive crowd scenes. The film was started as a silent film but three passages we're inserted with sound. The color tinting on the print used for this DVD are bright and fresh and thrilling. Lonesome is an exciting film with one foot in the silent era and one foot in the sound era.
There are two other films included here. Broadway is remarkable for it's extravagent Art Deco interiors and costumes (those skyscraper inspired dresses and head pieces are a hoot). The giant crane built to film within the cavernous nightclub set allows the audience to swoop around a multileveled Deco wonderland filled with partiers that are really having a ball. There are some fun two color technicolor sequences in this film.
This Criterion Collection is a delight.
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on October 27, 2014
This Blu-Ray release contains as main-movie: "Lonesome" starring Barbara Kent and handsome Glenn Tryon.
Both playing lonesome hearts in the big city of New York and deciding to go to Coney Island to celebrate the Fourth of July Weekend after having a long working day/week.

Fazit: its a nice lovestory with a surprising ending. Just a few scenes might be a little bit to "long" but otherwise it makes sense for a "long"-working-day.
Jim's (Glenn Tryon) Friend is played by Andy Devine.
Înteresting: the movies was meant to be silent but contains 3 short talking/dialogue scenes and also some color-scenes (at the carnival).
The Picture Quality: I would call it not perfect but good. The Dialogue scenes have better picture Quality than the silent scenes.

As bonus are added two more movies:

a musical called "BROADWAY" (104 MIN), the studios first talking movie (but also a silent version was released) which contains Technicolor-Sequences also starring Glenn Tryon.

The other by far more interesting, entertaining movie is "The Last Performance" which was believed to be lost but a danish copie survived and was used (incl. danish intertitels) for this Blu-Ray Release: optional English Subitles available (!)

Star of this movie is Conrad Veidt ("Casablanca") as Erik the Great who is in love with is young assistant Julie. Erik catched a thief, Mark (played by handsome Fred MacKaye, his next movie was "Our Dancing Daughters") but is giving him a chance to work for him. Mark and Julie going to be in love which Erik don't like. He makes a evil decision.

The picture Quality is good.

One more "true" Bonus is a audio-record (optional english Subtitles available) by Paul Fejos who talks about his life and working on the movies - which might be interesting for movie goers/fans.

FAZIT: Criterion did it again - releasing some rare-seen titles. The Set contains also a 34-page-booklet.

ATTENTION: Region Code A
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on August 15, 2014
Didn't know much about this film until I saw it listed by the Criterion Collection and as a student of silent film, it aroused my interest. So glad it did because this 1928 film by Paul Fejos is a delightful revelation. Not entirely silent as it was released at the time of the beginning of talkies and some dialog scenes were added and although they are a little clumsy it won't spoil your appreciation of this beautiful work of art. Only 69 minutes long but a truly enchanting time spent with the lovely Barbara Kent and Glenn Tryon, two lonesome souls who discover each other, lose each other and then find each other again all in one day! Brilliantly realized by Paul Fejos, stunningly lensed by Gilbert Warrenton and produced under the Carl Laemmle Jr. banner at Universal this a must for silent movie buffs.
As well, there are so many terrific extras on this two-disc set. The audio commentary by noted film historian Richard Koszarski is of the highest calibre; one of the most interesting and informative I have heard accompanying a feature (I watched the film with the audio commentary immediately after watching the feature by itself). Also on disc one is a visual essay on the director by his wife, featuring Fejos narrating his life and career and that is quite a revelation as well. Certainly a well-lived life in so many different fields!
Disc two has the 1929 Conrad Veidt silent, directed by Fejos, "The Last Performance" and a reconstructed sound version of the famous but incomplete "Broadway" with its innovative camera techniques (with audio interview with cinematographer Hal Mohr). And if that is not enough, there is also a 32 page booklet loaded with articles and photos on Paul Fejos and his films. And as to be expected, the Criterion restoration is superb. A great buy and more importantly, a treasure rediscovered.
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on February 18, 2014
Criterion is too modest - this is an amazing release not just for the main feature, Lonesome, a fascinating relic of a bygone era showing the unique talents of this forgotten director combined with the ambitious talent of young Carl Laemmle Jr. But also the two bonus features are fascinating as well, especially Broadway, I suppose (see the nightclub set they built and watch what the amazing, custom-designed, custom-built Broadway crane could do.) . But also, The Last Performance, which plays exactly like one of Lon Chaney's unrequited love movies of which he was so fond - but with Conrad Veidt bringing a more elegant dynamic as the master magician in love with his assistant. (Mary Philbin) who of course loves another. So this is three full movies - rare, fascinating cinema gems. The extras are like rare treasures from an archaeological dig. A total winner.
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on June 23, 2015
If you've never seen it, grab it. The package includes director Lejos' follow-up, with the same male lead, Glenn Tryon, Broadway, an early talkie with astounding boom shots. Lonesome is as simple as can be, and a total heartbreaker, gorgeously directed and acted, about two sad urban dwellers who find enchantment out at Coney Island for the day. Don't bother reading about it, see it!
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on July 5, 2014
"Lonesome" is a fantastic silent film that I'm so glad was fully restored and remastered; otherwise, I probably never would've heard of it. It's a story about a young man and a young woman who work hard all day and meet at a beach one day. They don't know it yet, but they are destined to be together and will soon find out. Unfortunately, fate intervenes and they are separated; will they find each other again? It seems impossible. The sound and color sequences, as well as the black and white, are excellent quality, as Criterion has a reputation for pristine quality films. The story is romantic and the characters are very likable; you root for them all the way through the movie. I highly recommend this one.
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on September 1, 2012
Fantastic film on Criterion blu-ray.... Great disc with 3 films by Fejos including The Last Performance and Broadway.... The main feature is the best of the the lot and well worth the price all by itself.... The only problem is that during the few dialogue scenes the main characters make it clear why they never became stars after the silent era....those scenes look like they were taken out of a high school play....nevertheless, this is a great film.... Great city scenes with fantasy elements thrown in here and there....hand-tinted color.... There is also original sound throughout the whole film, as it came out in 1928 when sound was available....it's just that part of the film was made as a silent, so there are title cards to cover the dialogue, but there is a soundtrack and some effects...Good stuff....plus an interesting short doc on the special crane made just for Fejos for some of his innovative camera work.... get it....
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on February 22, 2013
Lonesome is one of the best silent films I've watched. The photography and the scenes
are magnificent. It's a very simple story but yet it's very enjoyable.
The restoration is awesome! I particularly enjoyed the scenes of New York City and
Coney Island as they looked in the 1920's. What a wonderful piece of nostalgia!
I would heartily recommend this film. I haven't even enjoyed watching the other films
in this set but I can honestly say it's more than worth the purchase price.
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on September 26, 2012
This set was a pleasent surprise: "Lonesome" is an absolute masterpiece (despite what anyone says, is an example of cinematic creativity and the influence in it for those who see Murnau, Vertov, Eisenstein, possibly Leni or whoever that, this is very, very little and much, much better than The Crowd by Vidor); for me, one of the greatest films from the silent era (and one of the more affecting); also we have a very good silent: "The Last Performance" (with a great Conrad Veidt, good Mary Philbin and very good Leslie Fenton), with missing parts but complete in its narrative, and a very good talkie musical drama "Broadway"(despite some inconsistencies in the argument and some scenes some slow but better than other talkie "classics")with dazzling travellings and very good visual and sound editing and really good performances along the cast. Great reconstruction for the films by the another rediscovered Master of Cinema Paul Fejos. Buy it! It is a must-see. (Remember : He directed as a movie director the Two-color technicolor "The king of Jazz" (1930) without credit; He deserved it but trouble with Carl Laemmle Jr and producers not allowed it).
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on October 22, 2016
A silent classic. Good characterization and story.
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