A Few Words About A few words about...™ The Sound of Music -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Nov 1, 2010.

  1. Russell G

    Russell G Fake Shemp
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2002
    Messages:
    11,214
    Likes Received:
    569
    Location:
    Deadmonton
    Real Name:
    Russell
    '
    It's currently $19.99 on Amazon.ca as well for Canadians, though with a crazy 2 month ship date. I bought it since I never saw the film. Ifigure if I don;t like it I can flip the boxset for the same price.
     
  2. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Messages:
    1,140
    Likes Received:
    204
    I had always missed this thread for some reason, and Robert Harris, if you are still subscribed, I would like to ask you a question about this. Many people who have projected this movie in theaters have complained on threads here at HTF and other sites that the sound on the film is still not as good as was originally presented. Now in the short "restoring the sound" they show them at computer screen remastering this soundtrack, and one of the men shows us how they cut everything off above a certain level because it is "noise" on the high end. So we see him removing everything above a certain line. But if you look closely, there are signals there as well (above the lines). I submit to you that this was where the original tape hiss was (because there was no Dolby noise reduction in those days).

    Now I have not heard of any modern day magic that can remove tape hiss without removing everything else in that area of the signal. Many complaints that the high end is missing here, and it is. Listen to the gold laserdisc CD and even the soundtracks on all versions up to the blu-ray restoration and the upper end is there. I do not hear, nor do many other SOM fans the extreme upper end which would include mainly instruments like horns on the blu-ray soundtrack. Have they cut out the very high end by taking the tape hiss and removing it? I think Fox wanted a "hiss free" soundtrack which this should not be.

    Personally, I would much rather have the tape hiss still there and retain the very high end. I think so much was hurt by doing this. The chorus at the end singing "Climb Every Mountain," and so much of the orchestra recording. Listen to the 40th anniversary edition or the laserdiscs. That high end is fantastic. The richness of the recording is better now, but I will always feel that we have lost the very high end of the recording of this soundtrack and I really feel Fox should correct this and remove the filters that were used on the high end to cut it off at a certain point to eliminate the original tape hiss. Joe Caps certainly agrees and he has worked in remastering and knows his business. He hates the new soundtrack for its loss of high end.

    Does anyone else agree? Mr. Harris, any input? I Mean your My Fair Lady has a much better high end as does Oklahoma, recorded 10 years earlier. I really want Fox to correct this and don't know how to get this heard.
     
  3. warnerbro

    warnerbro Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    357
    Likes Received:
    209
    Location:
    Burbank, California
    Real Name:
    Darrell
    This film actually won an Oscar for sound, but the folks who worked on this soundtrack cut off the ends of speeches ("Oh, Max, what did they sa--"), completely jettisoned many sound effects like the thigh slap, her kiss to Leisel (during the "MY FAVORITE THINGS" reprise Maria blows Liesel a kiss) and many others. This is my favorite film of all time and seeing it in a theatre gives you chills on that opening spin.
     
  4. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Messages:
    1,140
    Likes Received:
    204
    Hi Warnerbro:) I agree with you. So many negative changes to this soundtrack, and it is my favorite film as well. No movie even comes close. I only want this to sound the way it should, is that asking too much? Come on Shawn B at Fox, hear us and please do something before you release a 4k edition. Don't let this soundtrack remain as the only one we will ever hear again. You know, I would even be happy with the addition of the soundtrack from the 40th anniversary DVD in DTS MA. But every time I watch this now, I regret the sound.
     
    warnerbro likes this.
  5. Rob_Ray

    Rob_Ray Screenwriter
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2004
    Messages:
    1,821
    Likes Received:
    1,122
    Location:
    Southern California
    Real Name:
    Rob Ray
    I also prefer the old soundtrack. There was never anything wrong with the sound. Why "restore" it?
     
    warnerbro likes this.
  6. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Messages:
    1,140
    Likes Received:
    204
    Hi Rob :) All my friends are responding hehe. I am back, was away for a year.

    Like I said earlier, what they should have done is use the new soundtrack as "remastered" and provided the original soundtrack (like Disney did with Mary Poppins) and present them both in lossless and let us decide which one we want to listen to. Now we are forced to listen to a soundtrack in which all of the high end is gone. I've always said 'GIVE ME THE TAPE HISS PLEASE." When there's tape hiss, you know it is not filtered. They are trying to please the younger digital crowds by taking all of the tape hiss away and trying to say "See how this sounds like a modern recording?" Well it ISN'T, and so we lose the high end of what is many people's all time favorite movie. It's us purists and fans of the movie who really lose out. Yes, I really pissed off about this. We were so close to finally getting the movie down right for the first time in 7 or 8 remasters. And then they have the nerve to throw that "King and I bluray at us. What has happened to Fox Home Entertainment.
     
    KPmusmag and warnerbro like this.
  7. warnerbro

    warnerbro Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    357
    Likes Received:
    209
    Location:
    Burbank, California
    Real Name:
    Darrell
    Yes, I agree, THE KING AND I is an unwatchable smeared, weird colors, stretched mess! What the beep were they thinking? Did no one even look at it at quality control before it went out?
     
  8. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Messages:
    1,140
    Likes Received:
    204
    It is really sad considering the Rodgers and Hammerstein films are really one of the best collections that Fox has, each one should have been treated like Oklahoma's Todd-AO version was as well as South Pacific, those two were done right both audio and video.
     
  9. warnerbro

    warnerbro Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    357
    Likes Received:
    209
    Location:
    Burbank, California
    Real Name:
    Darrell
    Yes, Oklahoma and South Pacific both look stunning and correct. I wish they would give us an HD South Pacific Roadshow though. I love the Road Show version and it's in SD which is unfortunate.
     
    Josh Steinberg likes this.
  10. KPmusmag

    KPmusmag Supporting Actor
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    619
    Likes Received:
    545
    Location:
    Henderson, NV
    Real Name:
    Kevin Parcher
    I flew to Seattle to see SOM in 70mm at the Seattle Cinerama theater as part of their 70mm film festival .I also saw 2001 and Tron. 2001 and Tron were very enjoyable, although I learned something about 2001 that made me a bit displeased.

    SOM was absolutely beautiful for about 22 minutes and then it crashed and burned. Toward the end of Confidence, the sound cut out, then it came back, then it cut out, it came back and was out-of-sync and then the screen went dark. After a few minutes, we were told that the DTS disc reader had failed. DTS? I guess I naively thought that we would hear the original magnetic track. But no.

    After a few minutes, we were told they were going to switch to "a digital backup", which I assumed to mean a DCP, which, to be honest, I found interesting; it would be like an A-B comparison between 70mm and digital..

    But it turned out that their digital back-up was the blu-ray!!! On a 40-foot high screen. The good news is that the blu-ray looked better at that size than I expected. The bad news is that it looked awful.

    I stayed through Do-Re-Mi, but I couldn't take any more. In speaking with the manager, it turns out that 2001 was also projected with DTS disc interlock audio. Sigh. The manager also told me that he hates film festivals, he only wants to play new movies. OK. That wasn't what i wanted to hear at that moment.

    I accept that equipment fails, s%^& happens etc. But after traveling over 1700 miles and spending upwards of $1000 I cannot deny that I was bitterly, bitterly disappointed.
     
  11. haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2011
    Messages:
    3,192
    Likes Received:
    2,264
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Real Name:
    Bruce
    I don't like the Blu-ray at all. The colors are just off, plain and simple.
     
  12. Kruse

    Kruse Auditioning

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2010
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Real Name:
    Henning
    Exactly, disappointed every time with these green/yellow color.
     
  13. warnerbro

    warnerbro Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    357
    Likes Received:
    209
    Location:
    Burbank, California
    Real Name:
    Darrell
    The color scheme on the bluray is a muddy brown where the laserdisc color approved by the director Robert Wise had more of a blue and pink and green balance. The bluray however did show a huge amount of sharpness and detail and looked more like it was taken from a large-frame format when I saw it on my 55 inch 4k. The brownish color scheme is more what I remember when I've seen the movie on actual film at the theatre. However, the laserdisc color is more pleasing and natural. This is and will always be my favorite film. I am disappointed with the botched sound though. This film won an Oscar for sound and the distributors decided they could do a better job and as a result wiped out many sound effects and elements.
     
    PMF likes this.
  14. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Messages:
    1,140
    Likes Received:
    204
    OMG that is awful, you know I have considered going to one of these 70mm festivals if they had at least 3 or 4 of the films I want to see but now I wonder, if we are not getting a 70mm print and 6 track magnetic stereo, what's the purpose. I am so sorry that happened to you.

    Warnerbro, I agree 100% with every word you said. I've written Shawn Belston at Fox many times about that and The King and I but he does not respond. I thought we were their customers, what happened to answering people? They have never given us at least the satisfaction of a response on the sound on Sound of Music and the picture on The King and I even though it's been a very hot topic here for many people, and we put out good money for them. They re-issued Patton so I don't know what is different about The King and I, it is just as wrong. And I fear, and I do mean FEAR that we will be stuck with this Sound of Music without a high end and the sound effects for good moving into the 4k release. It stinks. I can't stand watching the Sound of Music, easily my all time favorite film, with no high end, all I do is sit and listen to the orchestra and wish it were not altered. It amazes me they used the 6 track masters for the first time and would take out the high end, and we know they did because if it were not altered we would hear the tape hiss as there was no noise reduction in 1965. But we have to get rid of all that noise to impress the masses that its digital, right?
     
    PMF, Rob_Ray, KPmusmag and 1 other person like this.
  15. warnerbro

    warnerbro Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Messages:
    357
    Likes Received:
    209
    Location:
    Burbank, California
    Real Name:
    Darrell
    At least they didn't give The Sound Of Music the teal and rust wash they've given almost every other classic lately. Does anyone (Robert Harris?) know why they are dong that? Have you seen the new Valley of the Dolls? It got this teal and rust wash but the Dvd looked correct.
     
  16. willyTass

    willyTass Second Unit

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2005
    Messages:
    462
    Likes Received:
    59
    Rob

    You could have the missus cue up the vinyl every time they break out into song

    My Japanese pressing of the Sound of music isn't brickwalled
     
  17. KPmusmag

    KPmusmag Supporting Actor
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    619
    Likes Received:
    545
    Location:
    Henderson, NV
    Real Name:
    Kevin Parcher
    I just read the news that Charmian Carr has passed away. I am so shocked and sad.

    So, this may not be the best time for this post, but -- yesterday I traveled to Seattle to try again to see SOM in 70mm at the Seattle Cinerama. This time there were no technical glitches and it was a beautiful screening. Yes, I guess I am a fanatic.

    I really wanted to see it not only because I love the film, but it has been 27 years since I last saw SOM in 70mm and after living with the various home video editions since then, I wanted to see what the 70mm would like to my eye after all that time and all those home theater viewings. The 1990 screening I attended was for the film's 25th anniversary at the (now gone) Plitt Century, right next door to 20th-Century Fox. It was quite beautiful, but that is a long ago memory, so it was fascinating journey back in time to watch it on 70mm once again yesterday.

    I watched the film again this morning on blu-ray projected at 110", while the memory of the 70 is fresh, for the sake of comparison. If anyone is interested, these are some of my observations. I am not saying what is right or wrong, just observations.

    I bought two seats for the screening. I watched the first act from front row center and the second act from just left of center in the first row of the balcony for a change of perspective. It was a virtually sold out show, with only a few empty in the very first row. Many, many young people - I was so happy to see them not only embrace the film itself, but the movie going experience itself in such a wonderful venue that has only one really big screen.

    The first thing I noticed was that the mountains in the aerial shots that begin the film were a bit soft in focus. I knew it wasn't the projector because the 20th Fox logo had looked sharp. Once we started seeing the villages, the focus seemed sharper.

    The helicopter approach had an odd effect sitting that close. You have Julie's hill, the far snow capped mountains in the far background, and then some smaller mountains in between. As the depth of field changes, it appeared that the middle mountains were moving away separately of everything else. When I watched it this morning I didn't get that effect, but then I started the scene again and moved very close to the screen, down low like you would be at a theater in the front row, and I could replicate the effect to a degree. Of course, the Cinerama screen is 90 feet wide and mine is 9 feet wide! Still, it was interesting and unexpected.

    I noticed that Julie strides really joyfully across that field. I guess I always thought she did so, but on that big screen, even when she was a tiny part of the frame, she was close to life-size, and you could really see her exuberance. I had never noticed that she touches her face at one point; I wonder if that was some kind of cue to the cameraman or if a bug flew in her face. :)

    FaceTouch.JPG

    As the credits unfolded, something jumped out at me. The credit page for the stage version looked totally different; the lettering began at the very top of the frame and the letters in peoples name had gilt edges. This morning I went through every video edition I have collected over the years (including my off-the-air VHS from 1978) and couldn't find what I saw yesterday. This is the credit page I am talking about. I wonder when or why it was changed. (Of course, I have no idea the provenance of the print I saw yesterday. It was pretty clean, though.)

    Halliday.JPG

    While looking for the other title card on all my home video editions, I did come upon something surprising. On my VHS that I recorded from an ABC broadcast in 1978, the Todd-AO credit is included. I know that the credit wasn't included in 35mm prints, and it was not on the first widescreen laserdisc. It seems impossible that ABC was working with a 70mm print, but there it is.

    ToddAO.JPG


    I may be laughed at for this, but I think that the blu-ray might have more detail than the 70mm. I don't know how that's possible, but, for example when Maria first enters the Von Trapp house and stands at the bottom of the stairs, I was surprised watching the 70 that I couldn't make out her face as well as I can on the blu. I also noticed that I had gotten used to being able to really see the textures of fabrics on the blu ray, almost like I could reach and touch them. I didn't get that watching the 70mm.

    Stairs1.JPG

    One thing I had really wondered about was how much you could see in shadows. There is a moment, just as Julie starts singing Confidence, where she is in shadow and you can hardly make out her features. I have had people tell me my projector is set too dark, but, nope, it looked exactly like that on the 70mm.

    ConfShadow.JPG

    That being said, I felt some other places were too dark. In the following cap, on 70mm Liesl's face was entirely black, on the blu you can just make out her features.

    ToWriteOn.JPG

    Another example: on 70mm I could hardly make out Max's lapels.

    lapels.JPG

    And in this scene, Elsa and Georg's features were virtually invisible on the 70mm.

    Scowl.JPG

    There was one shot that looked incredibly bad. Just after Do-Re-Mi, we see Max, Elsa and Georg in a long shot as their car turns onto the road. The first close-up was so grainy and horrible it looked like 16mm. I know they had to re-shoot some of that due to a problem with the rear projection, but, woof, it was ugly. On the blu you can tell to a degree, but on that big screen it was a shock.

    Grainy.JPG

    I have to say that it was a joy to watch it on film again. What I found most remarkable was that the skin tones were so consistent throughout all three hours, beautiful, just creamy. I was very impressed by that. If I have a quibble with the blu, it is that the skin tones seem inconsistent. I like them better up through Do-Re-Mi than I do after that. In the two photos below, both taken from the current home video edition, the first best captures, subjectively for me, what I experienced watching the 70. Julie has peaches and cream complexion and truly blond hair. In the second, her hair is strawberry and her complexion is slightly orange. In the 70, that scene is still peaches and cream and blond. Julie herself has said that they had trouble with her hair color during that shoot. But watching the 70 I wasn't as aware of the color changes of her hair as when I watched the blu this morning. I'm not saying what's right or wrong, just that that was my experience watching the 70 yesterday compared to the blu this morning.

    CreamyBlond.JPG CreamyBlond3.JPG

    As for the sound, it was fine. Directional dialog was there. I do know that it was a DTS disc but I do not when the disc was created. The apron slap was very soft, although there, but that tells me it might be the newly made track. There was also not a lick of hiss. I do remember some hiss in the 1990 screening.

    Again, I am just so sad about Charmian Carr. I can't believe she is gone - and this weekend. :(
     
  18. Andrew Budgell

    Andrew Budgell Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2002
    Messages:
    1,468
    Likes Received:
    644
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Real Name:
    Andy Budgell
    The passing of Charmian Carr is a very sad loss. I was fortunate enough to have met her when I was a kid and she graciously signed a half dozen "Sound of Music" things for me, including her memoir. She was so kind, and I'll think of her when I'm in Salzburg for the first time next month.
     
    Tony Bensley, PMF, Matt Hough and 3 others like this.
  19. bryan4999

    bryan4999 Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2012
    Messages:
    555
    Likes Received:
    197
    Real Name:
    Bryan Forbes

    Actually, she is flipping off the pilot because his downdrafts kept knocking her down. ;)
     
    Jimbo64 and warnerbro like this.
  20. Charles Smith

    Charles Smith Extremely Talented Member
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    Messages:
    5,210
    Likes Received:
    1,172
    Location:
    Nor'east
    Real Name:
    Charles Smith
    Just heard about Charmian Carr. That's a shocker, and a sad one.
     

Share This Page