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Old 25-09-2005, 18:16   #401
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And the rest:

Shadow Of A Doubt - appears to be the same fine transfer as before. Looked good then, looks good now.

Saboteur - perhaps the most improved transfer in the set - it's really great now. The previous DVD was way too dark (just check out the opening credits where the entire right side of the screen is so dark you can barely read the end of Hitchcock's name), and the difference is immediately apparent in the film's opening scenes, which finally look the way they should. It's night and day, really. The new DVD is sharp, has lovely contrast, and I couldn't be happier with it.

Frenzy - the previous DVD sported a nice, sharp and colorful transfer. This DVD is also fine and similar. The slightly greenish cast of the previous DVD is gone, but I'm not sure that's for the better. The credits are now no longer oddly windowboxed as on the first DVD. But, the differences are really negligible - the new DVD may be a bit sharper overall, but it's minor.

Family Plot - improved, definitely. It's the ugliest and worst-photographed of any post 1950 Hitch film. The older DVD was muddy and a bit dark and very grainy - this is brighter, sharper, and slightly less grainy.

I also gave Psycho and Vertigo a more thorough look-see (last night was just a cursory chapter-to-chapter look, which isn't really fair). I will say this: If you liked the non-anamorphic transfers, then these will most likely please you. The excessive grain in Psycho is in the opticals, although they're more grainy than they should be. The normal scenes all look okay - I just wish the whole thing was sharper, and my guess is that someday we'll see a better transfer. I'm guessing that I'm right - that they used the same element as the previous transfer and enhanced it, but I don't have the patience to do that kind of comparison, so I leave it to others.

With Vertigo, again, if you liked the non-anamorphic, you'll be happy. It's reasonably sharp and it's nice to have it enhanced. Since I know what the 35mm IB Tech prints (from the original run) look like, I will say again that this transfer doesn't resemble that look at all, and that's the big disappointment for me, as it was with the old DVD. Could it be sharper? Better? Oh, my, yes. But, for those who don't really know what it should look like, I suppose it will do. It does look marginally better than the non-anamorphic.

For me, the new set is worth it for the obviously improved The Birds and Torn Curtain, both noticably better than their previous DVDs, and for Saboteur. And, Topaz, Family Plot, Harry, and Marnie all look a better, and since Hitch is pretty much my favorite director, I'll take whatever improvements I can get.
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Old 25-09-2005, 18:54   #402
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Many thanks haineshisway!

Grrrrrr - I wish my copy of the box set had arrived already
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Old 25-09-2005, 19:44   #403
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This was posted at the other joint:

"There very well maybe something wrong with the transfer on The Man Who Knew Too Much but I find it hard to trust someone who says 'something' is wrong but he 'can't put [his] finger on it.' Call me crazy but I'd like to hear something more specific before getting worked up.

Like every release, someone is gonna have a problem with it anyway. Especially when you're the 'first' person to have the set, you have to find something to say is wrong with it. And like I said, there may be problems but I want to hear other opinions first. "

This is the sort of Internet dweeb I loathe. I am honest enough to say that certain scenes in The Man Who Knew Too Much have something strange going on in them but that I can't put my finger on what it is - I guess this fellow would like me to make a supposition instead or just make something up. The image does something peculiar - you really notice it in the floor in the restaurant scene I mentioned - sort of a waviness.

And does this twit really think that because I'm apparently the "first" to see the set that I purposely went out of my way to say something negative? The fact is, I said mostly positive things, but that seems beyond his ken to have noticed. And I tried to be very specific in my comments. They can wait for all the second opinions they want, but few of those second opinions will come from folks who have acutally been in the business for thirty-five years and who have actually made films and been around their elements.

I'm happy to say that that sort of inanity seems to be absent from this board and for that I say hoo and ray.
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Old 25-09-2005, 19:45   #404
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And, if we're talking Hitchcockian, I picked up the new MGM disc of The Spiral Staircase (region 1). What is wrong with that company? Keep your Anchor Bay (region 1), that's all I can say. The MGM is missing the RKO logo, and the image looks like a 16mm dupe.
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Old 25-09-2005, 20:01   #405
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haineshisway
.

I'm happy to say that that sort of inanity seems to be absent from this board and for that I say hoo and ray.
I'm obviously resting on my inane laurels.
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Old 25-09-2005, 20:41   #406
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As well you should :-)

When one goes out of their way to say "this is one person's opinion" then those sort of twit comments (which are pretty standard over there) are typical and yes, inane.

But, that doesn't seem to happen here like it does there - certainly not with the frequency that it does there.

NP: A Lawless Street
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Old 25-09-2005, 21:18   #407
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I think part of the problem is that the opinion in question not only came from another forum, but from a Brit forum to boot; I'm waiting for someone to twig and tag you 'Benedict Arnold' . They would indeed rather hear from one of their own, and preferably one of the usual suspects; that's the way of internet fora, as you say. There are many twits in cyberspace, but lots of decent chaps all over the place - it's sorting one from t'other that's the trick (I tend not to get to get too het up with the twits; just ignore 'em). Maybe we get less of that sort of stuff here because this is a nice, niche forum that by its very nature scares the maroons away (and we are, consequentially, a smaller community).

Quote:
Originally Posted by haineshisway
And, if we're talking Hitchcockian, I picked up the new MGM disc of The Spiral Staircase (region 1). What is wrong with that company? Keep your Anchor Bay (region 1), that's all I can say. The MGM is missing the RKO logo, and the image looks like a 16mm dupe.
..or keep the quite cheap R2 disc, a replica of the Anchor Bay disc (but PAL).

BTW Mr Aitch, many thanks for the comments; I think I'm sold...

Last edited by John Hodson; 25-09-2005 at 21:25.
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Old 25-09-2005, 21:40   #408
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I think for the most part the plusses outweigh the minuses, which are mostly to do with Vertigo and Psycho, at least for me.

Otherwise, almost all the other transfers are minimally a little better, and in certain cases a lot better, with the exception of Rope and SOAD, which seem to be exactly the same transfers as before.
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Old 25-09-2005, 23:20   #409
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I've lost touch a bit with hitchcock DVDs, there being so many about now and the new boxed sets as well.

Problem is I've got loads of DVDs that would be in the new sets and it would bug me if some discs are better in the new set and some not so.

Tough choices ahead I think .
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Old 26-09-2005, 06:37   #410
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Quote:
Someone asked if each film was in its own slipcase - no, there are four DVDs to a case - you know, two on each side overlapping. Not my favorite sort of case.
Why on earth did they do that? I'm not a packaging nut but I really hate these overlapping disc cases. I think I'll take out all the discs and put them in the old cases.

Quote:
a nice, niche forum
What I like about this forum of course is that it only deals with classic movies so I don't have to sift through countless threads that don't interest me. And the level of knowledge and posters who have something interesting to say about films is very high. Most of the time I just keep my mouth shut and do a .
Plus John keeps excellent track of all the classic DVDs coming up .
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Old 26-09-2005, 10:19   #411
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DVD Beaver is promising lots of screencaps soon. Meanwhile, Gary says:

...As some of the previous releases were not anamorphic, this time around they are getting the full 16x9 treatment, including both "Vertigo" and "Psycho"....

Yep, 16x9. But, to my eye, taken from the existing masters used for the last transfer. The real joys of the set are Torn Curtain and The Birds, both noticeably improved - brighter, sharper and better color. Topaz, Marnie, The Trouble With Harry and Family Plot also look sharper and better. Shadow of a Doubt and Rope are about the same.

Saboteur is the biggest revelation - night and day. The older DVD was way too dark and very dupey looking - this new transfer has great contrast and looks the way it should. Happily, the Paramount and VistaVision logo is restored. Rear Window is a bit sharper and brighter, but not by much - I personally hated the "restoration" which was excessively grainy and looks nothing like the 35mm IB Tech prints of that film.


BTW, check the more recent posts in that HTF thread I linked to earlier; the packaging does indeed sound more than a little naff...
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Old 26-09-2005, 15:19   #412
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If they sound similar to my comments that's because they are - the Beaver asked if he could use them. :-)
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Old 26-09-2005, 15:21   #413
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haineshisway
If they sound similar to my comments that's because they are - the Beaver asked if he could use them. :-)
I did suspect...
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Old 26-09-2005, 23:04   #414
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"ninnies...?!?!?"
What are non HTF members from the UK? "Linnies"...??


Last edited by Dave Mack; 26-09-2005 at 23:07.
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Old 26-09-2005, 23:57   #415
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Dear Dave Mack: I'm the one who used the word "twit" and I used it to describe a few posters who I believe fit that definition - not EVERYONE at the HTF. I'm also not from the UK.

Here is another opinion from a German fellow over at the HTF:

Excessive use of a noise filter in combination with artificially adding sharpness often results in visible edge enhancments, halos, jitter and aliasing effects. Best visible in "The Man Who Knew Too Much". A totally faulty transfer, partly unwatchable, where the edge enhancement sometimes makes the picture jitter so much that it almost seems to move vertically. (giving the audience the real feeling of "vertigo" - to be sarcastic)

Vertigo anamorphic with improved picture quality and the original monaural soundtrack. A plus.

Psycho anamorphic, but - in my opinion- looking worse than the original release. Don't get me wrong: I love to see film grain and hate plain filtered transfers, but this is not FINE grain, it is "macro grain" of a standard definition master digitally framed for anamorphic encoding. Nothing else. Disappointing.

I'm glad he's able to pinpoint the problem with The Man Who Knew Too Much - his description is exactly right. And he completely agrees with me about Psycho, so that's two of us. I suppose I'm happier than he is with the other films like Marnie, The Birds, Topaz, and Torn Curtain - it seems more than just artificial brightening and sharpening, especially with Torn Curtain.
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Old 27-09-2005, 00:01   #416
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Gotcha, I was just teasing. "ninny" isn't a term I hear to often. "assbag"... well...

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Old 27-09-2005, 18:41   #417
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DVD Beaver has reviewed the set here.
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Old 27-09-2005, 18:56   #418
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackal
DVD Beaver has reviewed the set here.
Well that tears it; looks like I've now got to have it...
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Old 27-09-2005, 19:11   #419
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I've read through the comments, several of which mirror mine. I get a bit weirded out when he says "might look the same as I remember." which to me means he's not doing a comparison back to back, which you have to do to understand what you're talking about.

Psycho is definitely enhanced, yes, we can say that. But, I will keep pointing out that while it's perfectly acceptable, it's not what it should be - nor is Vertigo.

Torn Curtain, which he says he "thinks" looks like he "remembers" it, is drastically improved, more than any film in the set save for Saboteur. The colors, when compared to the older release, are perfection now, and it's MUCH sharper.

The Birds is also improved more than he's saying, as is Marnie, which is much brighter and sharper in the new set. Family Plot, while it will never look good because it was poorly photographed, does look better now.

He's right on The Man Who Knew Too Much - the color IS better, but I just think the problems with the image are awful.
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Old 27-09-2005, 19:14   #420
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The R2 PAL versions should look better than the R1 with the extra resolution. Any R1 vs R2 comparisons upcoming?
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