6 January 2009

One of the significant gaps in my classic horror movie collection has been that I haven't had a good copy of the Lon Chaney version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923). Because this movie has slipped into the public domain, there are many different editions, which raises the obvious question of which one should get.

Over at Silent Era they have a review of various editions. They are quite certain that the version to get is the 2007 edition from Image Entertainment.

However, while the 2007 edition includes something like 40 seconds of footage not found in the 1999 edition from Image Entertainment, the the 2007 edition omits about 12 second of footage that is in the 1999 edition.

I ordered a copy of the 2007 edition, but growled and fretted about those 12 seconds. Finally, in the context of the reviewer having pin-pointed where the missing footage would go, I decided to get also a copy of the 1999 edition. I am going to rip these two DVDs, splice those twelve seconds from one file into the other, and burn a new DVD from that.

I'm not sure just what I'll do about the sound-track — I'll probably just let it go silent during the intervals from the 1999 edition.

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