The Thief of Bagdad [Blu-ray]
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Newly restored from two 35mm negatives and incorporating the color tints and tones of the original release prints, this definitive edition of The Thief of Bagdad features silent film score maestro Carl Davis conducting the Philharmonia Orchestra, performing a magnificent score that intermingles Davis' own music with the iconic Orientalia of Rimsky-Korsakov.
Bonus Features: Audio commentary by Fairbanks biographer Jeffrey Vance, Featurette including rare behind-the-scenes photographs.
Top Customer Reviews
The Kino "Deluxe Edition" is digitally mastered from a 35mm archive negative, with 19 minutes of rare outtakes and special effects footage as extras. The film is tinted throughout -- a color effect that was used on its initial release, and which adds greatly to the fantastic nature of the story and its immense sets.
The new score by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra (a quintet that specializes in reviving music used during the silent film era) is based loosely on the original "cue sheet" for the film by James Bradford. This means that you'll be hearing some of the music recommended for the film on its first release (although the music would have been different in each theater--silent film music was left up to the music director at each movie house). The music features many "oriental" pieces written for the silent film theater by forgotten "photoplay music" composers such as Gaston Borch and Irenee Berge, as well as pieces by classical composers like Rimsky-Korsakov who explored oriental themes. A written commentary and cue list of the music used is on the DVD as an extra, and can also be found at Mont Alto's web site, [...]
A different high-quality edition from Image Entertainment features an organ score by Gaylord Carter, who was a talented theater organist, and that's also a good choice.Read more ›
Douglas Fairbanks is in excellent shape & form, for the "athletic" part he has to play (at his "acrobatic" best-considering he was 40 years old when it was made); and embodies the hero (the thief of the title) perfectly, who is "redeemed" by the power of love (in the shape of a "languid" princess played by Julanne Johnston). The sets are just awesome & gorgeous (designed by the legendary William Cameron Menzies), plus deft direction by Raoul Walsh.
Great acting by Anna May Wong (as one of the princess' ladies in waiting) and SoJin (The Mongol Prince), who are perfect as the "villains" of the story.
The Kino DVD Release, brings a digital stereo orchestral new score, adapted from the original 1924 cue sheets, a great asset, plus a set of never before seen outtakes and special effects footage, excerpts of Paul Leni's "Waxworks" and George Méliès 1905 "Arabian Nights"...oh...., and a filmed "introduction" by Orson Welles himself.
Highly recommended for silent movie buffs and movie buffs in general, the story line & the plot is very different indeed from Zoltan Korda's classic 1940 same title masterpiece. This movie stands its own ground besides that other version. I have both and love them!!!
Beware of other inferior editions!
Fairbanks practically dances his way through the film, which is appropriate given that the Ballet Russe was a big influence on his production. William Cameron Menzies art direction and sets are astounding and it's great to be able to see them so clearly. The restoration really does justice to his work - not to mention Anna May Wong's beauty. Looking forward to hearing what Fairbanks scholar Jeffrey Vance has to say in the audio commentary. The Motion Picture Academy published his definitive book on Fairbanks and he also introduced the TCM screening. I've seen a number of behind-the-scenes stills on various silent films, so am hoping that the featurette will be as good as the restoration.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Douglas Fairbanks shines as THE THIEF OF BAGDAD. An excellent presentation brought to Blu-Ray by the Cohen Collection, I highly recommend this for all silent film and fantasy epic... Read morePublished 10 days ago by David L. Gill
Had some pretty good special effects, but it dragged a bit during the quests.Published 25 days ago by Amazon Customer
My girlfriend had been after this version of the movie (with the Rimsky-K score) for a while. Thrilled to be able to get it for her.Published 5 months ago by YoJamesBo
I must keep remembering that this film is older than me...given that, I was really very impressed with cinematographic tricks used, and the marvelous set that was built to make... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Richard
The Thief of Baghdad(released Mar/24)starred,among others,Douglas Fairbanks,Snitz Edwards,Charles Belcher,Julanne Johnston and Anna May Wong. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Robert Badgley
Very Old Movie, but considering the tech from that time it is very impressive. Hugh sets, some neat special effects, great plot. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Ray L.
Unfortunately the first copy of the blu-ray I ordered from amazon had both the sound and the picture cutting in and out and I am waiting for my replacement copy now. Read morePublished 9 months ago by NJM