A Few Words About A few words about...™ Lost Keaton-- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist

    Feb 8, 1999
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    Real Name:
    Robert Harris
    I'm at a loss as to why it was necessary to bring Lost Keaton to Blu-ray, and am working hard to try and find a few nice things to say about this set.

    Beyond selling a few discs, the Blu-ray image only exacerbates the problems with the various dupe elements used for this release, and only a few are what I would consider to be decent quality.

    I'm a huge Keaton fan, and always have been, and it's nice to see his output from 1934-37 available, during a downturn in his career, but to what end?

    16 short films made for Educational Pictures are interesting, but nowhere near the quality of his earlier shorts and features. One gag after another is seen as a weak re-tread of his earlier work in the glory days.

    While digital clean-ups are mentioned, any attempts seems to have either failed, or made things worse.

    Of the 16 shorts included in the set, the majority appear to have come from 35mm dupe elements, while a couple appear to be originated from 16mm. Scratches abound, along with splices (both visible and obvious on the track side). While image stabilization might have helped some of the 35 sourced material, I'm not seeing much (or any) attempt.

    For those who wish to own these shorts, which are really only for Keaton completists, my recommendation is to stick with the standard definition DVD set, released in 2010, if you already own it, and not upgrade. The problems seen via Blu-ray will be less evident. For those considering a purchase for the first time, consider standard def, although some of the later shorts -- probably four in total -- should look a bit better on Blu-ray. As for the other dozen...

    Everything is not worth bringing to Blu-ray.

    Image - range for all in the collection - 0.5 - 2

    Audio - 0.5 - 2.5

    Not Recommended.


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