October 26th, 2012

carole lombard 05
  • vp19

Looking for some reel 'Power'?

carole lombard power 03c

And by that, we're referring to the 1928 Pathe silent buddy comedy starring William Boyd and Alan Hale Sr. as construction workers, with Lombard and Joan Bennett (in her first film) in small supporting roles, playing two of the "dames" in their lives.

As far as I know, "Power" has never had a legitimate DVD release (like most Pathe films of the late '20s, it's probably in public domain). But if you own a 16mm projector, you can watch this movie, as a vintage (albeit not original) print is being auctioned at eBay.

Here are some screenshots from "Power"; none feature Lombard, but it will give you an idea of the print's condition (passable for something nearly 85 years old):

carole lombard power 07a
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I believe the woman whose face we see above is Jacqueline Logan, who was higher-billed than either Lombard or Bennett and is, for all intents and purposes, this movie's leading lady.

Here's more info from the seller:

The film is on two 1,200 ft. reels that run about 1 hour and will be shipped by media rate mail within one day, with the exception of weekends and holidays, after payment is received.

Also, with the bidding on the film, there are four 400 ft. reels with additional footage for this film. They have not been screened but could be replacement footage for any future print damage.

These reels are labeled as one, two, three and four to correspond with the actual segments of the film. The footage is on four plastic cores with tails out. They will be sent with the feature to this auction's winner.

Reel One: has a short head leader; the title and credits are replaced; the inter titles appear to be original. There are several single frame cement repairs along with some tape repairs. These don't affect the picture or storyline. There is a complete ending to this reel with very short tail leader.

Reel Two: has a long head leader, half dozen scattered cement repairs, a complete ending with fade-out to "The End" card and short tail leader.

Both reels are in very good condition with no sprocket damage, edits or vinegar smell. There is some age-related wear. This is not an original print but probably much like other prints on the market. Inter titles are original. The picture contrast varies with lighter footage as well as darker sections.


carole lombard power 12a

Given their age, I am nearly 100 percent certain this is a nitrate print, combustible in the wrong hands, and unless you're well versed in handling such volatile film stock, I do not encourage buying this. I can't emphasize that enough.

As of this writing, two bids have been made, topping at $38.50. Bidding closes at 8:50 p.m. (Eastern) Wednesday. If interested, visit http://www.ebay.com/itm/16MM-FILM-B-W-SD-POWER-1928-SIL-WILLIAM-BOYD-ALAN-HALE-CAROLE-LOMBARD-COMEDY-/290795589591?pt=US_Film&hash=item43b4c48fd7.

Finally, here's what some exhibitors thought of the film in comments made to the 1929 Motion Picture Almanac:

carole lombard power 1929 motion picture almanac review 00a
carole lombard power 1929 motion picture almanac review 01a
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