Item #: 889290091178
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  • Drama (Aspect: 1.33:1)
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    Joan the Woman (Cardinal Film Corporation, 1916) was Cecil B. DeMille's first great spectacle. In keeping with theatrical tradition, DeMille sought a more formal and stylized mode of acting from stars Geraldine Farrar and Wallace Reid - a technique he continued in his late historical films. Wilfred Buckland's art direction is outstanding, and DeMille's social comments are subtle but biting. The film also features a dramatic hand-colored climax utilizing the Handschiegl stencil-color process.

    The film became a prototype for DeMille's later spectacles. His handling of the large battle scenes (with the aid of seventeen cameras and a small army of assistant directors, including William deMille, George Melford and Donald Crisp) was exceptional - equal to D.W. Griffith's work in The Birth of a Nation and Intolerance. The real strength of the picture, however, is found in the director's provocatively compelling images:

    • At Joan's trial by torture, officials the Church are clad in white hooded robes with black holes for eyes. DeMille frames his shot so that the top of Cauchon's mitre is out of frame, and he looks like a black-clad grand dragon of the invisible empire surrounded by Klansmen and hiding behind a crucifix rather than a bishop of the Church.
    • The empty town square. An executioner drives a single horse cart piled with kindling to lay around the stake where Joan will meet her death. A lone dog is the only living thing, barking a futile protest.
    • As Joan is led to the stake, the Bishop Cauchon seizes her ornate crucifix, and as the flames surround her, Eric Trent hands Joan a handmade cross of simple twigs that she carries to her death.

    Ultimately, in an effort to get more performances per day, the picture was drastically cut very early in the run. This DVD release offers DeMille's director's cut and the original hand-colored climax. William Furst's original 1916 score is performed by Christian Elliott at the J. Ross Reed Wurlitzer, Sexson Auditorium, Pasadena, California.

    (Abridged from an essay by Robert S. Birchard)

    Year: 1916
    Length: 137 minutes
    Director: Cecil B. DeMille
    Starring: Geraldine Farrar, Wallace Reid, Raymond Hatton, Hobart Bosworth
    Music: Composed in 1916 by William Furst and performed by Christian Elliott
    Format: NTSC

    Produced for DVD by David Shepard
    From the Blackhawk Films® Collection
    Presented by Flicker Alley

    • UPC: 889290091178
    • Release Date: 1916
    • Content Provider: Flicker Alley, LLC
    • Runtime: 137:00
    • Genre: Drama
    • Language: English
    • Format: DVD-NTSC
    • Screen: 0.16875
    • Aspect: 1.33:1
    • Rating: NR
    • Audio: Stereo
    • Color/BW: BW / Tinted
    • Special Features: None
    • Copyright: Special Contents of This Edition ©2001 by Film Preservation Associates, Inc. / Blu-ray Publication and Design ©2016 Flicker Alley, LLC
    • Number of Discs: 1
    • Disc Format: DVD-5

    Geraldine Farrar
    Wallace Reid
    Raymond Hatton
    Hobart Bosworth

    Written by:
    Scenario by Jeanie Macpherson

    Directed by:
    Cecil B. DeMille

    Produced by:
    Cardinal Film Corporation production