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If you have the slightest interest in the phenomenon called Rudolph Valentino, this terrific disc is absolutely the place to start. The screen's great male sex god of the 1920s had a mammoth success with The Sheik, a slice of desert romance both exciting and completely absurd. Valentino plays a dashing "sheik of Araby" who rather forcefully romances an adventure-minded English lady (Agnes Ayres); if the story creaks with Victorian storytelling conventions, it also works. Five years later Valentino returned to the sands with his final film, The Son of the Sheik, playing both his original role and the sheik's impetuous boy. More madness here, and a wild saber duel on horseback at night reminds us they don't make movies like this any more. Valentino's faux-exotic allure may seem curious to modern viewers, but squint hard and you can imagine the frenzy caused by the sultry eyes and rapacious grin.

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Special Features Includes three bonus shorts: Rudolph Valentino and His 88 American Beauties, The Sheik's Physique, and the original Pathe newsreel coverage of Valentino's funeral in August 1926 New digital stereo music scores, plus alternate soundtrack with vintage score for "The Son of the Sheik"

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ID1371DS Shiek/Son of the Shiek DVD (1921/Rudolph Valentino) $24.99 $22.49