The Missing Link Reviews

A Blind Bargain
A reconstruction of the film

by Philip J. Riley. Magicimage Film Books. Hardback. 193 pages. 26.50

review by Doug E. Dogg

A Blind Bargain by Philip J. RileyThis is Volume II in the Ackerman Archive series published in 1988. I purchased this in January1995 in London and is the only copy I have ever seen. The first book of the series is "London After Midnight".

A Blind Bargain (1922) is probably one of the most famous of Chaney's "lost" films next to London After Midnight. Sadly out of 150 films in which Lon appeared only 29 are still in one piece with partial copies existing of a further six, and only a few bits and pieces remain of another three.

Lon Chaney in A Blind Bargain (1922)This book is beautifully presented and is a real pleasure to read. Jammed into its 193 pages are in depth reviews of  lost and available Lon Chaney films including a full reconstruction of A Blind Bargain using 300 original silver nitrate photographs borrowed from archives around the world along with all the dialogue screen inserts. Director Wallace Worsley has provided a few personal stills for reproduction.
However, this is not all, the reader is also treated to a production background of the film, a detailed scene guide, a fascinating reproduction of the original press book and rare pictures taken of Lon Chaney throughout his career. Also included are the memories of Patsy Ruth Miller who starred with Chaney in 1923's The Hunchback of Notre Dame and a complete Goldwyn production list from 1918-1923 before their merger with Metro.

If Lon Chaney Senior is one of your personal favourites, then under no circumstances, should you ever find it, leave this one on the shop bookshelf. Buy it, take it home and enjoy it!

I have seen a few titles from the Magicimage series including "Dracula", "The Bride of Frankenstein", "The Wolfman" and "House of Frankenstein" at Forbidden Planet in London's Oxford Street and also at the Cinema Bookshop in Great Russell Street, but the availability of the film reconstruction series appears to be nigh on impossible. After contacting Magicimage Film Books in America, I was advised that hardback copies of "London After Midnight" are still available for $50 ppd.
For further information contact Magicimage, 740 South, 6th. Avenue, Absecon, New Jersey 08201.Magicimage Filmbooks

Since this article was written, the ensuing technology has provided us with Magicimage's website which I am pleased to say gives details of their publications including "A Blind Bargain" amongst their many other titles.
Just click on their logo opposite.

Available in the US click here