Reaching For The Moon (Passport Collector’s Edition)
Sound: C Extras: C- Film: C+
Joseph M. Schenck was a big and sometimes notorious
producer of feature films in the early sound era who went on to big productions
in Hollywood and Edmund Goulding’s Reaching For The Moon is an early
success that features United Artists co-founder Douglas Fairbanks in one of
their earliest sound films. It was
going to be a Musical by Irving Berlin running about 90 minutes, but was cut to
as short as just over an hour with almost all the songs cut out. This new DVD from Passport runs 72 minutes
and gives one an idea of what almost was.
Made around the time the Production Code was kicking in, a
young Bing Crosby still sings a song and Fairbanks is a big executive who loves
to drink. He is interested in a
beautiful girl (Bebe Daniels) and has a valet (Edward Everett Horton) who knows
it all just about. It would be the same
old clichéd film if it were not for the music that was originally there and the
fact that the Code had not settled in.
That makes it worth a look and is amusing throughout.
The 1.33 X 1 image shows its age and considering this is
an independent production from 1930, but this is far from how good it would
look in a 35mm print. William Cameron
Menzies did the Art Deco production design and the film has two
cinematographers credited. The Dolby
Digital 2.0 Mono also shows its age with original background audio flaws, hiss
from being at least a few generations down and just the physical condition of
the print the sound is coming from.
This sounds like old optical mono.
The only extra is an actual trailer for the film Passport somehow
- Nicholas Sheffo