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Old 06-08-2002, 08:00   #1
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Hitchcock DVDs: Best versions?

Im wanting get into my hitchcock films and just was wondering which versions and regions are the best to go for?
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Old 06-08-2002, 09:38   #2
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Some are better in Region 1, some in Region 2.

Go here:

http://www.dvdcompare.org.uk

and it'll tell you all you need to know.
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Old 06-08-2002, 10:07   #3
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Watched Criterion's Rebecca for the first time.What
a suberb movie.Nice transfer for movie made in
1940!!

Not checked out the extra's yet.
Gone get the other Criterion collection of Hitchcock
movies.
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Old 06-08-2002, 10:16   #4
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Go for Vertigo in R2 - the image seems better to me.
Same for North by NorthWest...

As for the others, dvdcompare is your best stop... I prefer PAL all the time but it's all a matter of personal preference really
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Old 06-08-2002, 13:02   #5
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the Universal R1s do have nicer covers than some of the R2s,
bar that not much difference until you include the Criterions.

the cheap R2 Rebecca, Notorious were actually very good I thought, and much cheaper than getting the crit ones.

has to be Criterion for the 39 Steps though.

the only sticking points seem to be Vertigo and Psycho re r1/r2.

the r1 vertigo is the correct print, r2 may not be according to recent info - but it is anamorphic.

the r1 pyscho has a documentary on, pretty sure its not there on the R2.

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Old 06-08-2002, 15:49   #6
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check this thread as well!
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Old 06-08-2002, 15:52   #7
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btw although the R1 Psycho is non-anamorphic (the R2 is anamorphic) it has TONS of extras not on the R2 and I would say has a better print as well.

To my eye the R1 and R2 "Vertigo" version are from the same restored print - only R2 is anamorphic and looked all the better for it IMHO.
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Old 06-08-2002, 16:00   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Richie
btw although the R1 Psycho is non-anamorphic (the R2 is anamorphic) it has TONS of extras not on the R2 and I would say has a better print as well.

To my eye the R1 and R2 "Vertigo" version are from the same restored print - only R2 is anamorphic and looked all the better for it IMHO.
yep completely agree about psycho... the extras like this are really important for me.. (50-60 minute doc).
anamorphic for a b&w film isnt essential, especially against this.

I'd also agree about the vertigo situation, robert harris (?) who did the restoration was swearing blind recently that the r2 anamorphic one was worse and not off the proper master.. its never bothered me to be honest, and I actually had the R1 version before that.

there was a web page with comparisions of the print if anyone can remember the link.
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Old 06-08-2002, 17:05   #9
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There are comparisions for Vertigo and some other films on this site http://www.dvdbeaver.com/ . You can either find it under whats new or underneath one of the pictures at the bottom of the picture collage. Also the Psycho doc is actually about 90 mins.

Has anyone picked up any of the French dvds of his oldest (or is it earlier work) pre 39? I'm forgetting titles right now, but the movies that seem to be Public Domain.

Last edited by ScreachingWeasel; 07-08-2002 at 07:10.
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Old 06-08-2002, 17:30   #10
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My recommendations

Early British films (up to 1939)

These are out on various US labels taking advantage of the fact that for various legal reasons they're in the public domain. Madacy and Laserlight between them distribute a surprising number of titles, including some seriously obscure rarities (Easy Virtue, Number Seventeen, The Manxman), but print and transfer quality is usually poor - though they're extremely cheap, which helps!

Criterion do The 39 Steps and The Lady Vanishes - the former is a terrific package (both transfer and extensive extras), the latter somewhat basic. I can certainly confirm from first-hand experience that it's better than the Laserlight, but it's considerably more expensive and far from pristine.

The Man Who Knew Too Much and The 39 Steps are out on Carlton in R2, but I haven't seen the DVDs.

1940s

Rebecca, Notorious and (soon) Spellbound - out on various labels in both R1 and R2, but I don't think there's any good reason not to go for the Criterions, which are absolutely superb.

Shadow of a Doubt and Rope - out in R1 and R2 in decent packages: good if not outstanding transfers and worthwhile extras (especially the documentaries).

1950s

Strangers on a Train - terrific on both R1 and R2, offering two separate cuts of the film.

Rear Window, The Trouble With Harry, The Man Who Knew Too Much - identical in both R1 and R2 as far as I can see.

Vertigo - R1 is non-anamorphic NTSC, R2 is anamorphic PAL. Extras are identical, so this is a no-brainer!

North By Northwest - absolutely unbelievable transfer that's still my benchmark for films of this era. The R1 and R2 are broadly similar, but I'd favour the R1 as it has one of those delicious Hitchcock-fronted trailers.

1960s/1970s

Psycho (R1) is an absolutely stunning package in terms of extras (virtually everything you could possibly want and then some, including a 90-minute documentary and tons of other supplements) but it's non-anamorphic NTSC. R2 is anamorphic PAL, but loses virtually all the extras. I'd favour the R1, as by all accounts the picture quality isn't that different.

The Birds - R1 and R2 look similar, but I've heard R2 is cropped to 4:3 while R1 is anamorphic 1.85:1. I don't know this for certain, so feel free to correct me!

I'm also not sure about the R2 aspect ratios on Marnie, Torn Curtain, Topaz, Frenzy and Family Plot - so, again, I'd instinctively favour the R1 editions. Aspect ratios aside, they appear to be pretty much identical packages.
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Old 07-08-2002, 00:08   #11
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go here for a read of the Vertigo query regarding r1 & r2, and the anamorphic print.. (and brightness increased also?).

http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...threadid=82751

some interesting stuff direct from Robert Harris the restorer.


I'd still go for the R2 though.
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Old 07-08-2002, 07:13   #12
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Hey "To Catch a Thief" is being released by Paramount on November 5th. That's one more down, now if only Warners would hurry up and put out their Hitchcock's.

Last edited by ScreachingWeasel; 07-08-2002 at 20:47.
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Old 07-08-2002, 11:20   #13
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that's excellent news... wondered when TCAT was coming out,
and hadn't seen mention of this.

any web link and details of extras?
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Old 07-08-2002, 16:46   #14
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Marnie is cropped to 4:3 in R2

ali
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Old 07-08-2002, 17:08   #15
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thats scary.

I remember there was the threat of 4:3 versions at the time the disks were about to be released, but when Rear Window turned up 16:9 I just expected the rest had followed suit.

so by yours and other comments, Marnie, Torn Curtain, Topaz, Frenzy and Family Plot are all 4:3 cropped?

scary.

glad I bought the R1 boxsets now.

nicer artwork too.
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Old 07-08-2002, 17:24   #16
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The Birds R2 & R4 are definately 4:3. The R1 is yummy anamorphic though!
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Old 07-08-2002, 18:13   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by MartinC
that's excellent news... wondered when TCAT was coming out,
and hadn't seen mention of this.

any web link and details of extras?
This from DVD File
Finally, Paramount will also release two more Cary Grant classics on 11/5, To Catch a Thief and Houseboat. Both are presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen and mono, with To Catch a Thief also including the "Writing and Casting of To Catch A Thief" and "The Making Of To Catch A Thief" featurettes, and both include a still gallery and trailers. Retail is $24.95 a pop.
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Old 07-08-2002, 18:26   #18
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Moving to Region Comparison
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Old 05-10-2002, 13:14   #19
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Just my 2p on these (with a slight PAL preference). Of the one's I've got...

39 Steps - Criterion R0 (1.33:1, NTSC)
The Lady Vanishes - Criterion R0 (1.33:1, NTSC, though a little low on the extras for the price)
Rebecca - Criterion R0 (1.33:1, NTSC)
Saboteur - Universal R2 or R4 if you like PAL (1.33:1)
Shadow of a Doubt - Universal R2 or R4 if you like PAL (1.33:1)
Notorious - Criterion R0 (1.33:1, NTSC)
Rope - Universal R2 or R4 if you like PAL (1.33:1)
The Trouble With Harry - Universal R2 or R4 if you like PAL (1.85:1 Anamrophic)
Vertigo - Columbia Tristar R2 (1.85:1 Anamorphic, whereas R1 is not Anamorphic)
North By Northwest - R4 if you like PAL and don't like snapper cases, R2 if snapper is your thing, R1 if you want the extra trailer. Personally, just for a trailer I'd only watch once compared to the film, I prefer PAL and sturdy cases, so R4 for me (plus it's cheaper and I can probably download the trailer anyway) (1.85:1 Anamorphic)
The Birds - Universal R1 CE (1.85:1 Anamorphic. R2/4 is non-anamorphic 4:3, though supposedly open matt)
Frenzy - Universal R2 or R4 if you like PAL (1.78:1 Anamorphic)


And a few others I've yet to get but have looked into...

The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934) - Carlton R2 for PAL and Amaray case, or R0 for the LaserLight snapper with a couple of small extras (haven't heard great things about the LaserLight editions though, although Carlton isn't much better).
Spellbound - R0 Criterion ?
Strangers on a Train - R4? if there is one. R1/2 are Warner snappers. R2 if you like PAL.
Rear Window - R2/4 for PAL (Rewind says R1 has DVD-ROM content, but I'd rather have a PAL version). (1.66:1 Anamorphic)
To Catch a Thief R1 due in November.
The Man Who Knew Too Much (1955) - Universal R2 or R4 if you like PAL (1.85:1 Anamorphic)
Pyscho - Wait for a better R2/4 . R1 may have extras, but it's the film I'm most interested in so if I bought it now I'd get the R2 for being anamorphic. Non-anamorphic NTSC of a 1.85:1 film is awful, even if it is black and white. Visible scan-lines, just can't stand them myself.
Marnie - Universal R1 CE (1.85:1 Anamorphic. R2/4 is non-anamorphic 4:3, though supposedly open matt). R1 has more extras.
Torn Curtain - Universal R1 (1.85:1 Anamorphic. R2/4 is non-anamorphic 4:3, though supposedly open matt).
Topaz - Universal R1 (1.85:1 Anamorphic. R2/4 is non-anamorphic 4:3 though supposedly open matt).
Family Plot - Universal R2 (R4?) for PAL (1.85:1 Anamorphic).


P.S. As well as Rewind, check out MichaelDVD for some in-depth comparisons between R1s and R4s.

Last edited by DeadKenny; 05-10-2002 at 13:30.
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Old 06-10-2002, 00:49   #20
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And dont forget :-

MR AND MRS SMITH region 2 (France ) Editions Montparnasse -- ( and YES it is in ENGLISHwith ENGLISH titles too )

SUSPICION Region 2 (France ) Editions Montparnasse / caihirs du cinema ( again in ENGLISH with English titles 0 also includes quite a number of interviews and extras ( including Patricia Hitchcock ) these are all in ENGLISH ( with FORCED FRENCH subtitles ) except one which is in FRENCH with NO subtitles what so ever.

the quality on both is excellent particularly Mr and Mrs Smith

well worth buying

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