Pola Negri: Iconic Collection-Early Films
DVD | Box Set
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(Feb 07, 2012)
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For the first time on DVD, four of Pola Negri's first films from the early days of her career in Europe, are now available in the three disc DVD Collector's Box. The collection features two never before released on DVD films: The Polish Dancer (1917) which boasts the title of "first feature film ever made in Poland" and the Yellow Ticket (1918) the first film to expose Anti-Semitism in Imperial Russia. Complementing these two historical gems are Eyes of the Mummy Ma (1918) with co-star Emil Jannings (Radu) who won the first Oscar for best actor in 1929, and Sappho (1921) the story of a love triangle that ends in tragedy.
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Couple of comments: first, this movie comes from the golden era of silent movies, and is worth seeing for just its historical context and significance. Second, the movie was shot entirely in Warsaw, which stood in for both Sokolowice and St. Petersburg. Third, what interested me the most was to observe the scenery, given that this is now almost 100 years ago. It’s like getting a time capsule in the form of a movie. Fourth, this stars Pola Negri. ‘Nuff said! Last but not least, for those interested in a further perspective on this movie, it was remade in Hollywood in 1931, starring Elissa Landi, Lionel Barrymore and Lawrence Olivier.
I saw “The Yellow Ticket” recently at the 2014 Jewish & Israeli Film Festival here in Cincinnati, where the movie was shown with a soundtrack composed, and performed live, by violinist Alicia Svigals, accompanied by pianist Marilyn Lerner. It certainly added to the overall enjoyment of the movie, as this now was a live multi-media event. Truly something special. Svigals has been touring North America doing this live performance, and if you have a chance to experience the movie in this way, by all means do not miss it! But even without that, “The Yellow Ticket” is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
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