Chicago DCP

Sexy, jazz-loving and dressed to kill, Roxie Hart (Phyllis Haver) has a doting, handsome husband in Victor Varconi; not to mention a gold-digging affair on the side with Eugene Pallette, who pays and pays, eventually with his life. Put on trial for murder, Roxie secures lawyer Billy Flynn (Robert Edeson), equal part mob “mouthpiece” and publicity agent. When Roxie hits the headlines, the courtroom theatrics begin. Like the musical Chicago that won the Best Picture Academy Award and five other Oscars in 2002, this original 1927 version descends from a 1926 hit Broadway play by Maurine Watkins. It s a terrifically entertaining mix of humor and melodrama as well as a pungent critique of trash journalism. Frank Urson signed Chicago as director, although it is substantially the work of Cecil B. DeMille and his A-list technical staff. (DeMille apparently judged it unseemly to take full credit for this cynical and secular story while his religious spectacle The King of Kings was still in theatres!) Chicago is silent filmmaking at its peak, with an outstanding score for this edition by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. The 1927 Chicago was long believed a lost film, but a perfect print survived in Cecil B. DeMille’s private collection. Restored by the UCLA Film and Television Archive in 2006, it has since been widely performed to rapturous audiences.

Chicago (1927) is available on DCP and DVD. 

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“Flicker Alley’s presentation of Chicago: The 1927 Film Restored is nothing short of miraculous. Mastered from an original nitrate print, the full-frame image transfer is gorgeous, with excellent resolution, a good balance in the black-and-white photography, and very little by way of damage. There are some occasional scratches on the film, but these are negligible; the studio has clearly gotten the best out their source. A movie this old and thought to be lost has no right to look so fresh.”

– DVD Talk

Chicago is silent filmmaking at its peak, with an outstanding score for this edition by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. The 1927 Chicago was long believed a lost film, but a perfect print survived in Cecil B. DeMille’s private collection. Restored by the UCLA Film and Television Archive in 2006, it has since been widely performed to rapturous audiences.”

– DVD Beaver