Author Topic: Old films on Blu-ray  (Read 3901 times)

Glebe

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #30 on: May 11, 2010, 09:31:40 PM »
The Ghostbusters transfer is fairly poor I thought, but most films I've seen have had pretty good transfers.

Films I'm looking forward to revisiting on Blu-Ray (off the top of my head):  Akira, Get Carter, Taxi Driver, Schindler's List, Seven Samurai, The Wicker Man.

Ghostbusters is a mixed bag... I'm fairly certain this has been posted before, but there's a fantastic DVD/Blu-ray comparison piece here. Hopefully Akira will get a Region B release at some point. The Wicker Man is due on October, as is Se7en, which I can't wait for. I'm really looking forward to Minority Report, by all accounts it looks incredible. I got Poltergiest yesterday in a sale, haven't watched it yet but apparently it's a really good transfer.

Santa's Boyfriend

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #31 on: May 11, 2010, 09:47:21 PM »
I'm really looking forward to Minority Report, by all accounts it looks incredible.

It's a poor film though, mainly because I simply couldn't believe its central conceit.  OK, so 3 psychic women prevent all murder from ever happening.  Fine.  Zero murder rate.  Fine.  [spoiler]But to then shut down the system because it was unpleasant to the women and/or because one guy got around it once?!  Come on!  You've got A ZERO MURDER RATE.  ZERO!  ZILCH! NONE!  NADA!  EXCEPT ONE, ONCE!  How many people are you condemning to a violent and brutal death by shutting that system down?![/spoiler]

Ahem.  Sure it'll look nice though.

biggytitbo

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #32 on: May 11, 2010, 10:41:39 PM »
Ahh I love Minority Report, one of Spielbergs best latter day films. Also looing forward to the rumoured  Blu Rays of Indiania Jones and Schindlers List.

The Wicker Man is out soon and that's a must buy, and I think Back to the Future is on its way, hopefully that won't be another mid 80s noise-fest. (what is it about blockbuster mid 80s films that makes them so noisy?)

Santa's Boyfriend

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #33 on: May 11, 2010, 10:59:29 PM »
Am I right in assuming there'll be no HD version of the Wicker Man Director's Cut?  That the negative doesn't exist?

I would have thought technology had advanced enough to be able to clean up the old director's cut print a bit.

Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #34 on: May 11, 2010, 11:09:37 PM »
Ahh I love Minority Report, one of Spielbergs best latter day films. Also looing forward to the rumoured  Blu Rays of Indiania Jones and Schindlers List.

The Wicker Man is out soon and that's a must buy, and I think Back to the Future is on its way, hopefully that won't be another mid 80s noise-fest. (what is it about blockbuster mid 80s films that makes them so noisy?)

It's those nasty mid-80's film stocks everyone was using back then.  James Cameron apologises for it on his commentary for Aliens.   

biggytitbo

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #35 on: May 11, 2010, 11:24:33 PM »
Am I right in assuming there'll be no HD version of the Wicker Man Director's Cut?  That the negative doesn't exist?

I would have thought technology had advanced enough to be able to clean up the old director's cut print a bit.
The directors cut is made from the standard edition with the lower quality VHS DC footage cut into it, so it'll look as good as the standard version apart from the inserts. The standard cut negative is excellent quality I think.

Santa's Boyfriend

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #36 on: May 12, 2010, 08:46:12 AM »
I thought the DC material came from a print that went out to a director in the US when the film was first made?  Surely it couldn't have been an VHS copy - for reasons of compatibility if nothing else.  Also I'm not actually sure VHS existed back then.

Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #37 on: May 13, 2010, 10:05:47 PM »
I thought the DC material came from a print that went out to a director in the US when the film was first made?  Surely it couldn't have been an VHS copy - for reasons of compatibility if nothing else.  Also I'm not actually sure VHS existed back then.

Yeah, if memory serves correctly the extra material is from a surviving 16mm of the original cut print that was sent to Roger Corman, with a view to getting him to pick up the US rights.   Corman neglected to send it back.  So it's of noticably lower qualitry than the rest of the film.  It should however still be restorable.   It's not ideal but even that 16mm dupe will have higher res than standard video.




Queneau

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #38 on: May 13, 2010, 10:10:52 PM »
Watched The Kid earlier. Superb quality transfer, very pleased with it. But where are the extras?

EDIT:

Just found this review on Amazon;

     
Quote
1.0 out of 5 stars Be careful, 13 May 2010
By    Markonesmile - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Kid [Blu-ray] [1921] (Blu-ray)
Be careful of this purchase. Even though it clearly states on the back of the box it comes with both DVD and Blu-ray versions, mine was missing the DVD. Unfortunately the DVD contains all the extras. What made matters worse Amazon then told me their stock had no extra DVD and according to them it wasn't meant too. It was only when I questioned that this was clearly wrong they refunded my money. Not good. You have been warned.

Slightly annoying then. The Great Dictator came with two discs. Not sure whether to get a refund or complain to Park Circus DVD. It is a nice transfer, and I suppose I have the extras in the DVD boxset already, but that's not the point.

biggytitbo

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #39 on: May 13, 2010, 10:29:10 PM »
Yeah, if memory serves correctly the extra material is from a surviving 16mm of the original cut print that was sent to Roger Corman, with a view to getting him to pick up the US rights.   Corman neglected to send it back.  So it's of noticably lower qualitry than the rest of the film.  It should however still be restorable.   It's not ideal but even that 16mm dupe will have higher res than standard video.
I'm pretty sure the Corman material only exists on videotape (whatever its vhs or whatever). Could be wrong though, but the footage on the dvd sure looks like an old nth generation video tape.

Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #40 on: May 13, 2010, 11:32:34 PM »
I'm pretty sure the Corman material only exists on videotape (whatever its vhs or whatever). Could be wrong though, but the footage on the dvd sure looks like an old nth generation video tape.

Well now only poor video copies seem to have been made available to distirbutors but Corman does, or at least did at one point, have an intact film print.  A decade later and they'd doubtless have sent Corman a screener on video but in the early 70s (VHS still being several years away) they'd have had no choice but to send an actual film print of some kind or another.   Creating a videotape would have involved an expensive Telecine job and so on and there's no reason why a film-maker who wasn't directly involved in TV would even have the equipment needed to play a Umatic tape or what not.  Shipping a print would have been the cheapest option and all the accounts of Corman's viewing copy use the term "Print."     

Quite where Roger has stashed his print or where it's gone to is something I can't answer.     It would certainly have a market value.   And it was apparently used as to strike dupe prints of the longer cut which was distributed in the US by indie distributor Abraxas in 79.   But yes, all later restorations have used a shonky video transfer of that Abraxas release for the extra scenes.   

Corman's copy may itself have fallen off the face of the Earth.  Canny businessman or not he may not have wanted to continue paying storage costs for the film elements to a title he didn't himself own.   Perhaps Abraxas themselves have lost all of those elements including Corman's print and whatever dupes they made.  They certainly don't seem to exist any more and aren't likely to have paid for any long term lab storage costs.   

Glebe

  • So here we are, then.
Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #41 on: May 17, 2010, 08:16:41 PM »
Chunking Express is a gorgeous blu-ray. The artificial eye release is £10.00 in HMV and 8 quid online.

This is kind of frustrating:

Artificial Eye/Criterion comparison.

The AE transfer looks way too dark. Criterion's 1:66:1 print is a little cropped at the sides, but has a tiny bit more info at top and bottom. Maybe it was intended be shown like that, though.

Ooh, good news:

Se7en in Sep (US, anyway).

wasp_f15ting

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #42 on: May 18, 2010, 10:11:22 PM »
This is kind of frustrating:

Artificial Eye/Criterion comparison.

The AE transfer looks way too dark. Criterion's 1:66:1 print is a little cropped at the sides, but has a tiny bit more info at top and bottom. Maybe it was intended be shown like that, though.

Ooh, good news:

Se7en in Sep (US, anyway).

The Criterion splash menu looks cooler too, but AE version will do for now.

I saw the DVD version of Testament of Dr Mabuse the other night, shame Goebels and his cunts banned the original celluloid, the film was stunning on DVD..

Whug Baspin

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #43 on: May 18, 2010, 10:19:27 PM »
Inspired by this thread I ordered Baraka on BlueRay and it is really very good and clear, I really think technology has reached a level that has made my eyes the bottleneck.

Santa's Boyfriend

  • 'S all in the game, yo
Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #44 on: May 18, 2010, 10:59:21 PM »
The Longest Day looks very nice in Blu-ray, in such a way that it really shows up when they're using newsreel footage etc.  Also the subtitles seem to be missing a few lines.

Great film though.

Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #45 on: May 18, 2010, 11:27:15 PM »
I'll be getting my first Blu-ray player in a couple of weeks, and am actually splashing out on quite a nice one (the LG BD390) because it can wirelessly connect to my home network and play the various porn videos I have there. I'm still half sceptical about the whole blu-ray phenomenon, I have to say. I had a Toshiba 1080p upscaler of standard DVDs that I've just sold, and to be honest, I couldn't really see an almighty difference. Christ, the old CRT set I've got downstairs gives as good a picture and it's not even HD-ready, let alone full HD. I still think a good quality CRT set runs circles around a lot of new TVs for picture quality.

That said, my new 'Full HD' 40" Samsung is struggling with the shitty SD freeview picture I'm feeding it, and it's spoiling things since the TV cost me an arm and a leg. I've put it down to bad source material, so I can't wait to get a good blu-ray player and really put it through it's paces. Hopefully it'll be significantly better than the upscaler which was good but not eye-popping. I'm also planning on getting Sky HD soon, so hopefully that'll improve things.

Anyway, yes. Minority Report is great, and it's one film I'd easily get on blu-ray. I've heard Up looks awesome too, although that's newer and therefore off-topic, I know. How about 'Flight of the Navigator'? I'd watch that little gem in HD fo'sho'

the midnight watch baboon

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #46 on: May 18, 2010, 11:29:56 PM »
this website seems quite good for price comparison shizzle.

http://www.cheapbluraymovies.co.uk/

Lfbarfe

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #47 on: May 18, 2010, 11:41:11 PM »
I'd love to see a high-res version of Mick Jackson's Threads, but I seriously doubt that'd ever happen.

Wouldn't the original be on 16mm, being a telly play and all that?

Santa's Boyfriend

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #48 on: May 19, 2010, 12:51:23 AM »
It was shot on film, probably 16mm, but there's a high probability that it was edited on video, meaning there would be no 16mm print in existence.

Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #49 on: May 19, 2010, 10:15:17 AM »
It was shot on film, probably 16mm, but there's a high probability that it was edited on video, meaning there would be no 16mm print in existence.

Yes, it was 16mm and it was likely edited on that rather than video.  Shooting on film and editing on Video was deplorably common for a while but didn't really kick off until the late 80s and even then it wasn't that common in the UK.   Anything shot entirely on film for UK TV in 84 would have been edited as film.   The last DVD of Threads did look like it was taken from a broadcast master rather than the original film elements but I'd be very, very surprised if the negative has been allowed to vanish.

Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #50 on: May 19, 2010, 10:54:33 AM »
this website seems quite good for price comparison shizzle.

http://www.cheapbluraymovies.co.uk/

Here too: http://www.find-dvd.co.uk/search.aspx?title=blu ray&sort=title - this includes a very helpful 'price watch' feature.

Santa's Boyfriend

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #51 on: May 19, 2010, 11:20:12 PM »
Yes, it was 16mm and it was likely edited on that rather than video.  Shooting on film and editing on Video was deplorably common for a while but didn't really kick off until the late 80s and even then it wasn't that common in the UK.   Anything shot entirely on film for UK TV in 84 would have been edited as film.   The last DVD of Threads did look like it was taken from a broadcast master rather than the original film elements but I'd be very, very surprised if the negative has been allowed to vanish.

Now there's an exciting thing!  If it was shot on 16mm do you think it may have been shot in 16:9?  I know that when they film for 4:3 they sometimes don't bother removing artefacts from the edge of the image if they know it's going to be cropped anyway.

chocky909

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #52 on: May 20, 2010, 12:27:16 AM »
I grabbed The Texas Chainsaw Massacre on Bluray cheap a while ago and I think that was shot in 16mm and is pretty grimy. But it looks fantastic seeing all the grain and dirty marks in such highly defined clarity.

Santa's Boyfriend

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #53 on: May 20, 2010, 10:43:13 PM »
Yeah I can see that with Texas Chainsaw.  It's a very grimy film all over!

Glebe

  • So here we are, then.
Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #54 on: May 21, 2010, 09:03:03 PM »
Speaking of grainy old low-budget horror classics, The Evil Dead is due out on Aug 31 in the US, hopefully a Region B release will follow soon.... and hopefully it will include the original 1:33:1 version, and won't be plastered with Digital Noise Reduction like EDII.

biggytitbo

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #55 on: May 21, 2010, 10:02:06 PM »
My DVD of threads looks very much like it was from 16mm rather than video, but I still think a decent blu ray version is a pipe dream. Spearhead from Space exists entirely on 16mm film but its so noisy and low res that a blu ray version would be entirely pointless.

Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #56 on: May 23, 2010, 12:32:49 AM »
Now there's an exciting thing!  If it was shot on 16mm do you think it may have been shot in 16:9?  I know that when they film for 4:3 they sometimes don't bother removing artefacts from the edge of the image if they know it's going to be cropped anyway.

Sadly no, when feature films are shot in standard 35mm a full frame is exposed and developed but with the understanding that it will be matted down to 1:1:85 when projected.  And with TV shows shot on 35mm they'd be working on the assumption that only a central 20mm high square of the frame would be scanned, so yes, if you examined a reel of a TV show from ITC crica the 60's you may well find C-stands, edges of sets and what not lurking outside that safe TV action zone.  But theoretically at least there might be enough at the sides to allow expanding the canvas from 4:3 to 16:9.

You might be able to do something similar to the 16mm neg for Threads but it certainly wouldn't have been shot 16x9 and monkeying about with it to produce a 16 x 9 Version would likely do more harm than good.. Earliest British TV show shot on film with a view to future widescreen presentation was STV's Dr Finlay's Casebook from the early 90s.  And even then many thought that was madness. 

Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #57 on: May 29, 2010, 01:56:10 AM »
I bought my player today, and didn't want to wait to get something online for my first disc, so popped into HMV and picked up Precious which was going for a reasonable price. I've watched a fair bit just to gauge the quality of the video and it looks great, although I'm constantly wanting to compare it to the DVD (which I don't own) so I can compare and contrast.

I also ordered Baraka today, which I understand will be about as good as it gets right now. Minority Report is on my list, just waiting for it to come down in price a bit.

mcbpete

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Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #58 on: May 29, 2010, 04:08:14 PM »
I've only watched the first 5 minutes of Baraka thanks to this topic but, fucking hell, I think I'm going blind from the amount of detail in every single frame. It's just incredible !

Glebe

  • So here we are, then.
Re: Old films on Blu-ray
« Reply #59 on: May 29, 2010, 06:47:42 PM »
Minority Report is on my list, just waiting for it to come down in price a bit.

I just saw the steelbook of that in HMV yesterday... am sorely tempted to pick it up. It's a fantastic transfer by all accounts, and has a tasty set of new Blu-Ray extras. It looks like Spielberg has really embraced Blu-Ray, he seems very involved in releases of his films... Saving Private Ryan has an audio fault and is undergoing a recall, but otherwise it's supposedly a superb disc. And War Of The Worlds - which is due in just over a week - apparently looks top notch too. Pity it doesn't include any new extras, apparently there are a load of deleted scenes and a rumoured extended cut (which hopefully extends to [spoiler]Cruise's son getting vaporised by a last-surviving tripod at the end, heh![/spoiler]).