Dawson City

Dawson City

Frozen Time

DVD - 2017
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"This meditation on cinema's past from Decasia director Bill Morrison pieces together the bizarre true history of a long-lost collection of 533 nitrate film prints from the early 1900s. Located just south of the Arctic Circle, Dawson City was settled in 1896 and became the center of the Canadian Gold Rush that brough 100,000 prospectors to the area. It was also the final stop for a distribution chain that sent prints and newsreels to the Yukon. The films were seldom, if ever, returned. The now-famous Dawson City Collection was uncovered in 1978 when a bulldozer working its way through a parking lot dug up a horde of film cans. Morrison draws on these permafrost-protected, rare silent films and newsreels, pairing them with archival footage, interviews, historical photographs, and an enigmatic score by Sigur Ros collaborator and composer Alex Somers. Dawson City : Frozen Time depicts the unique history of this Canadian Gold Rush town by chronicling the life cycle of a singular film collection through its exile, burial, rediscovery, and salvation"--Container.
Publisher: New York : Kino Lorber, c2017
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (2 hrs.) : silent and sd., col. and b&w ; 4 3/4 in
Alternative Title: Frozen time


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Sep 28, 2018

If you are intellectually lazy, if you are artistically agnostic, if you dont know and dont care about Historical Canada and some subtle side narratives, then dont you dare sign out this disc and deny passionate viewers their chance to see it.

The REST OF US who aren't all the above need to see it. Let the shallow pass it by.

As for the soundtrack its perfect. Not one moment seemed obtrusive or awkward, it enhanced it marvellously, KUDOS to the sound ppl! Presented without narration was also the BEST of supporting techniques.

Given the state of the films and how they were buried its amazing what technicians could do in bringing them back...

Specific segments from the silent films enhancing the subtitled storyline also were done cleverly and creatively. All in all it was completely engaging for me, watched twice before returning it. It will train you about a time long gone, a society undeservedly abandoned, technologies as they flowered in simpler times, a breed of pioneering tough men no longer found here, and unfolds a rich history of a nation sprouting in a substantial yet remote part of our country now virtually ignored by our "education system".

HIGHLY recommended

Mar 31, 2018

The film goes at a slow, meditative pace and the story is told through subtitles. The little historical tidbits throughout the film held my interest as the story unfolded.

Mar 15, 2018

This film blew me away. One caution or piece of advice - almost impossible to follow but I share my experience. I knew NOTHING about this film when I began to watch it. The blurb reviews had encourage the watch. The overall experience of the film in the unfolding narrative will blow you away. That you don't know the point until late in the piece only enhances its power when it is delivered. This is not a normal movie with actors and storyline and ups and downs and such - what it provides is an historic overview and then WHAM - you get the point and for me, it was overwhelming as a lover of film, history and documentation. Only tease i can offer is that you will see footage of WWI and the 1919 World Series, let alone the Klondike Gold Rush of the late 1800s. Oh boy, this story is SO strong and so heart-wrenching. Cannot recommend it highly enough.

Dec 28, 2017

Be warned, the vast majority of this movie is black and white still photos with fairly small font text overlay. There is no narration and ambient music plays throughout. It's a unique film, but it's real tough to stay focused through the 2 hour running time.

Dec 26, 2017

Bit of a disappointment...but a disclaimer: I've written professionally about the Klondike Gold Rush, so know more about it that most may know. However...bear these factors in mind:

1. No voice over narration, and apart from the introduction, no audio at all except some ho-hum music and effects.

2. Little or no explanation in titles about what you're seeing or the significance of some individuals named.

Most important:

3. At least half the video is composed of still photos...NOT motion pictures.

This is a 2nd-rate production. Too bad. the film find and the time/place/location demands and deserves far better.

Dec 03, 2017

Totally unique. Story of Dawson told by using old silent movie clips and some still photo images from glass negative. This silent movies were lost to the world until accidentally unearthed in Dawson - a interesting story. On the downside - the music is distracting and often disturbing. I finally just turned off the sound.


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