Kino raises the stakes with two German classics

Kino International is preparing two of the most ambitious DVDs the company has put out since their entrance into the DVD market. The depression-era German films The Blue Angel and Diary of a Lost Girl are being fully restored to their original lengths and quality for a set of fully loaded special editions.

“The Blue Angel” follows Professor Rath, the strict and prudish teacher in an all boys“ prep school. After learning of the pupils” infatuation with French postcards depicting a local nightclub songstress, he decides to personally investigate the source of such indecency. But as soon as he enters the shadowy Blue Angel nightclub and steals one glimpse of the smoldering Lola-Lola (Marlene Dietrich), commanding the stage in a top hat, stockings and bare thighs, Rath’s self-righteous piety is crushed. He finds himself fatefully seduced by the throaty voice of the vulgar siren, singing, “Falling In Love Again.” Consumed by desire and tormented by his rigid propriety, Professor Rath allows himself to be dragged down a path of personal degradation.

The 1930 film, controversial yet hugely popular during it’s 1930 release, will be presented as a two disc special edition in its original fullscreen presentation. Both the original German version (with English subtitles) and the translated English version will be included on the set. An audio commentary by Werner Sudendorf of the Berlin Film Museum, two trailers, Marlene Dietrich’s 1930 screen test, concert footage from two different Dietrich performances, a filmed interview, forty-one biographies of all key cast and production staff, “The Blue Angel Chronicles” documentary about the history of the production and a photo gallery including behind the scenes stills, costume illustrations and posters will supplement the film to fill the two discs.
Louise Brooks is the star of “Diary of a Lost Girl” who plays the naive daughter of a prosperous pharmacist. Shy and faunlike, the wide-eyed innocent is made pregnant by her father’s young assistant. To preserve family honor, she is sent to a repressive reform school from which she eventually escapes. Penniless and homeless, she is directed to a brothel where she becomes liberated and lives for the moment with radiant physical abandon.

The newly restored print of “Diary” comes from an Italian print which restores almost ten minutes of previously censored footage never seen in the United States. For this new restoration, Kino has retranslated the original German intertitles and commissioned a new musical score by composer Joseph Turrin. As an extra, the DVD offers the complete sound short subject featuring Louise Brooks’ Windy Riley Goes to Hollywood, made by Educational Shorts and directed under an alias by Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle.

Both DVDs will see a November 13th release date. “Diary of a Lost Girl” will carry a $29.95 suggested retail price, while the two-disc “The Blue Angel” will be marked at $34.95.

Leave a comment