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Description du produit
Sur une île lointaine, la rencontre improbable entre un écrivain fuyant la civilisation et une femme perdue, Lena, tourne au drame lorsqu un aubergiste fourbe trahit le couple et le jette dans les griffes d une bande de brigands sans foi ni loi. Adapté du roman de Joseph Conrad et notamment interprété par Lon Chaney et Wallace Beery, Victory est un film lumineux, superbe, d une perfection formelle à couper le souffle. Violence, exotisme, aventure et trahison... Victory est une uvre rare et d une force absolument inouïe.
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The second feature, VICTORY, looks close to how it must have looked when it was first released with a crisp, clear picture and color tints although I wonder if some footage is missing as the film seems rather abrupt in places. Based on a lesser Joseph Conrad novel, the film was directed by Maurice Tourneur who was one of the great visual stylists of the silent era. His use of light and shadow in the scene with Chaney and Wallace Beery anticipates film noir by 20 years (his son Jacques Tourneur would make several notable film noirs in the 1940's). He began his career as a painter in France and created several painting like effects in his movies. Check out his 1920 version of LAST OF THE MOHICANS and you'll see what I mean. Lon gives two very different performances in these movies that really showcase his genius. While both are criminals they are as different in characterization as the make-ups Chaney created for them. DARLING's "Stoop" Connors is a humorless street bully while VICTORY's Ricardo is a deadly killer with a sense of humor. Actress Seena Owen was in D.W. Griffith's INTOLERANCE three years before VICTORY and would be in Erich von Stroheim's QUEEN KELLY in 1928.
Alternating between the languid and the brutally violent, VICTORY is a forgotten masterpiece that deserves to be seen again. THE WICKED DARLING, while no masterpiece, gives us a glimpse of early Chaney and one of my favorite neglected silent performers, Priscilla Dean. It is also extremely well made on a meager budget. An excellent double feature which was put together by David Shepard of Film Preservation Associates and Blackhawk Films. The music score by Eric Beheim is reworked from cue sheets of the period and features several recognizable themes.
My favourite of the two films is "Victory" which has survived in perfect condition and shows Chaney as a hard-to-kill ruthless murderer on some exotic islands in the Dutch East Indies. The principle characters and story depict a man who tries to follow his father's philosophy of isolation and detachment from society and people, living alone on a deserted island, yet when it comes to a pretty young woman in distress his plans go astray. Yet it takes three rough and murderous treasure hunters (especially Chaney's character with superb make-up done by Chaney himself) to invade his island paradise and threaten the woman to make him realize what is really important in life. Both films are about an hour long and have a very good new musical score by Eric Beheim, and apart from being a treat for Lon Chaney fans, they both feature other good stars in leading roles with interesting stories which are well directed, making this DVD a nice addition to a silent film collection.