New Valentino DVD set

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Post by precoder »

Some thoughts on one of the three original films included in this Flicker Alley set. This being the last one of the three for me to watch ...

"Stolen Moments" 1920: a truncated three-reel re-issue released by the Selznicks in 1922 to capitalize on the popularity of Valentino. Originally filmed in 1920 by American Cinema Pictures, it served primarily to showcase concert pianist Marguerite Namara as an actress but is of curious interest because it's the last film Valentino appeared in before "Four Horsemen Of The Apocalypse" ...

His role is that of a caddish blackmailer Jose, who acquires some personal documents from the actress and plots to profit from them. His character this time is rather dowdy and awkward in attempting to appear villainous and the moustache thingy was like so un-sheiky. His rough kisses were certainly less than passionate, and since hot kisses are what Valentino is all about, that part was disappointing ... His eyes are always great though ...

Since so much of Miss Namara's scenes were cut out, it seems the leading lady duties are shared by both Namara and Aileen Pringle, neither of which I found very compelling or even attractive. The fights are kinda fakey and Rudy gets killed (twice) before it's all over. It didn't offer much entertainment and the storyline is difficult to follow though some of it was nicely photographed on location in Savannah. I'm sorry to go four out of ten and say not a film I would normally recommend ...

But fret not lonely housewives, pining away at the ironing board of life, dreaming of exotic moonlit nights on distant romantic shores in the arms of the italian love-god ... Uh ... I know you're out there. And don't let this discourage those interested in the DVD, because I can vouch the two other films "Moran Of The Lady Letty" 1922 co-starring the strikingly beautiful and very photogenic Dorothy Dalton and "The Conquering Power" 1921 re-teaming Valentino with Alice Terry, are both much, much better films ...
I absolutely adore movies. Even bad ones. I don't like pretentious ones, but a good bad movie, you must admit, is great. ~ Roddy McDowell
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Post by pktrekgirl »

^ Rudy played a womanizing cad a few times in his pre-FOUR HORSEMEN days. In fact, IIRC Valentino caught the attention of June Mathis (who was instrumental in his getting the part of Julio in THE FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE APOCALYPSE) for his performance in EYES OF YOUTH, in which he plays a sleezeball gigolo. It was a small role, but it was the role that, for whatever reason, put him on June Mathis' radar...and the rest is history.
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Post by silentscreen »

I agree precoder! Here's my little review of Stolen Moments.

I watched Stolen Moments off my new Valentino set. This was the movie Rudy made before he hit stardom with THE FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE APOCALYPSE. Having read the reviews, I wasn't expecting much, and I wasn't disappointed.

Rudy is the best thing in the film, playing the villain and the cad that he had been typecast into playing with as much force as the contrived and silly script allows. The film was intended as a star vehicle for Marguerite Namara, who was an opera singer and a celebrity at the time. It didn't produce results, as she only made three movies after this. And no wonder, her acting is contrived and over the top. The film was cut down to three reels to highlight Rudy's screen time, so perhaps it's unfair to judge it too harshly, but what remains is only interesting as a snapshot of the type of roles Rudy had been playing before becoming popular and getting better roles, and for the location shots in the South.

The set is important because of the extras that are included that provide a glimpse into Rudy's life. They are wonderful! The best film on the set will definitely be Moran of the Lady Letty, but it's a great collection to have for Valentino fans!
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Post by charliechaplinfan »

Moran Of The Lady Letty is a must for any Rudy fans. It has a good story line and it gives Rudy a chance to look windswept and gorgeous 8)

I'm not a big fan of his oiled down hair but no oil for part of this film. He's very nice. I was lucky enough to borrow this off Marta Moran of The Lady Letty so good I'm adding it to my collection.

Another bonus for me was the glimpses of San Francisco harbour we visited there a few years ago and you can glimpse in the background Alcatraz in the background. It's very nostalgic :)
Failure is unimportant. It takes courage to make a fool of yourself - Charlie Chaplin
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