• 10 Things I Learned: The Gold Rush

    By Abbey Lustgarten

16 comments

  • By Kevin
    June 13, 2012
    09:29 PM

    I think the dueling barbershop chairs scene is from The Circus, not The Great Dictator.
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    • By Mark
      June 14, 2012
      01:46 AM

      It's The Great Dictator. Jack Oalkie and Chapln were the chairs. No barber chairs in The Circus.
    • By Ryan
      June 15, 2012
      01:13 PM

      Mark, I think the scene Kevin means is when they did the barber gag while Chaplin's Tramp was being tested out for the circus. But indeed, the Rabbit of Seville sequence mentioned is much more like Dictator.
  • By Narrator
    June 13, 2012
    09:35 PM

    Chaplin may prefer it, but the '42 cut is greatly inferior to the '25 cut. The narration just kills the film, in my opinion.
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    • By dudu
      June 14, 2012
      02:00 PM

      Also the original ending is much more powerful.
    • By Keith
      June 14, 2012
      02:41 PM

      Historically interesting, however. I'm just glad we got both.
    • By Rick Schultz
      June 20, 2012
      04:24 PM

      I agree. Chaplin's talking kills the film. Almost completely -- the immaculateness of the print must be the primary reason this later version leads the new Criterion release. Chaplin liked to hear himself talk, and there's too much explaining of what we're seeing. Things like, "Now the little man has dropped his hat..." Yikes. As the critic Robert Warshow observed, once Chaplin started talking, the problem was he wouldn't shut up. I'll try watching it without the sound.
  • By Hunter Hale
    June 15, 2012
    06:58 PM

    What the 1942 version of THE GOLD RUSH gave us that greatly enhances the film is the Chaplin music. Now we finally have a beautiful looking 1925 cut of the film with that score on the film! Watching THE GOLD RUSH without Chaplin's score is like watching THE RED SHOES in black & white. The music adds a dimension to the film that can not be over estimated. As to the his narration for the 1942 film -- I like it. And this comes in handy for introducing young people who do not yet read well to a silent classic. Try it -- I have. Years ago I screened the Super 8mm official release for a group of young and old and it was magic. The Criterion release of THE GOLD RUSH on Blu-ray is one of their strongest releases ever. Every one of the Extras as well as the commentary are outstanding.
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    • By Rodney Hill
      June 20, 2012
      06:50 PM

      Young people uniformly love the 1925 version of the film, in my experience teaching it in an intro college course. Contrary to some contemporary film theories, audiences are able to "read" silent films quite readily. This is a great film to introduce students to the wonders of silent cinema.
    • By Shaun
      June 20, 2012
      11:07 PM

      Rodney, I believe Hunter means the narration helps young children who may have trouble reading the intertitles.
  • By Hunter Hale
    June 15, 2012
    07:13 PM

    This might be of interest to THE GOLD RUSH fans who prefer the original 1925 version. Between 1989 and 1991 I did a frame by frame comparison of the 1925 release with the 1942 version. This close comparison showed that many of the scenes in the newer release where actually longer in length then in the 1925 release. A closer look at shots showed that many of them were different takes. Some sections were entirely different shots and editing. The compiled findings were sent to Kevin Brownlow in England. He and David Gill are responsible for the current reconstructed 1925 film. He wrote me back that they had been trying to interest the Chaplin estate into doing a restored version of the original film and they were not interested as the 1942 release was considered to be Chaplin's final word on the film. Showing them that the two films were mostly made up of different takes helped to change their minds and they were given to go ahead to reconstruct it. Then the challenge became one of finding decent material to work with. This is covered well on the documentary included in the Extras. What we finally have is the opportunity to enjoy the 1925 versions in a very nicely restored print with Chaplin's own music newly recorded for it. This ranks as one of the major Blu-ray achievements to date.
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    • By Mike
      June 20, 2012
      11:33 PM

      Fascinating. I want your job.
  • By repete66211
    June 20, 2012
    03:44 PM

    The name's *Roscoe* Arbuckle.
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  • By rajanparthipan
    June 20, 2012
    10:43 PM

    Truly i appreciate beauty of the film.
    Reply
  • By dce1249
    June 22, 2012
    02:41 PM

    We are lucky to have any version of THE GOLD RUSH as a Criterion release - to have both is a true gift for Chaplin fans. I, too, prefer the i925 version only because of the endless narration in the re-issue version. Chaplin was as visually oriented an artist as Keaton was, and a viewer just wants to bask in the shots and the music, and let the pictures tell the story. Charlie was way too enamored of the sound of his own voice after he embraced sound. So the next big question is - when can we expect CITY LIGHTS?
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  • By MirrorGirl
    June 23, 2012
    11:28 PM

    I'd love to be able to add that one to my collection of stereoscopic cards--it's gorgeous.
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