All Quiet on the Western Front - ??Widescreen??

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Jon_Are, Apr 27, 2003.

  1. Jon_Are

    Jon_Are Cinematographer

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    I'm looking to buy a copy of this classic (the original 1930 version, not the 1979 remake with John Boy Walton).

    The listings on ebay all indicate that this is a widescreen release; even the cover art clearly states "widescreen" across the top of the cover.

    I know they didn't do widescreen in 1930. One of the ebay listings states "THIS IS THE WIDESCREEN 1930 VERSION OF ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT . IT WAS RENEWED IN 1958 , & THIS CONTAINS RESTORED FOOTAGE".

    Anyone know what's going on with this? Are (presumably OAR) fullscreen DVDs available?

    Thanks,

    Jon
     
  2. Peter Apruzzese

    Peter Apruzzese Producer

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    I believe the cover was a misprint and was supposed to say 'Collector's Edition', not 'Widescreen Edition'.
     
  3. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    The DVD image is the correct fullscreen. Universal somehow made an error. (How you accidentally add a widescreen banner to a 1930 movie is beyond my comprehension.)

    My disc lacks this banner, but I've seen some in stores.
     
  4. Mark_vdH

    Mark_vdH Screenwriter

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    I own it, but I hadn't noticed the widescreen banner on the front cover....

    The back cover states the correct AR of 1.33:1 though.
     
  5. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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  6. Geo Gabor

    Geo Gabor Stunt Coordinator

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    So....how's the actual DVD? Worth getting?
     
  7. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    The elements used for the transfer are in very rough shape.
     
  8. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    Image and sound quality is ok. Like Rain said...it's in rough shape.

    However, keep in mind that a lot of the film was lost over the years and had to be replaced with lesser quality materials.

    IMO, Universal should consider a digital restoration either by Cinesite's Cineon process (they recently did it with To Kill A Mockingbird, and also used it for two of their Paramount Hitchcock films) or allow it to be a 4K restoration by Lowry Digital Images.

    The audio is fine, though it could use some Sonic Solutions cleanup.
     
  9. Claes Ljunghorn

    Claes Ljunghorn Stunt Coordinator

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  10. Derek_McL

    Derek_McL Second Unit

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    Yes All Quiet is in pretty rough shape but the version on the Universal Region 1 does contain some scenes I had never seen before. The quality of the film itself makes it worth getting and I believe it remains the best anti-war film ever made.

    Classic Films On DVD
     
  11. Peter Kline

    Peter Kline Cinematographer

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    Although "All Quiet" was not filmed in wide screen, two other movies released in 1930 were shot in both 70mm and 35mm. "The Big Trail" starring John Wayne was restored many years ago into a 35mm 2.35:1 release which has popped up tv from time to time. Another film released that year in wide screen was "The Bat Whispers" also filmed in both 70mm and 35 mm.

    Infor courtesy of the american widescreen museum.
     
  12. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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  13. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    I had no idea they were the best elements available. If that's correct, it's a real shame.
     
  14. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

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    Well, just consider the bad luck for classics from that era. Sunrise original negs, lost in fire. Metropolis original negs lost. Passion of Joan of Arc original neg, lost. There are many more big ones that I am forgetting (like Greed, though it is a tad earlier).

    In many cases its been sheer luck to find good early generation dupes around that were in any kind of decent shape and containing close to the same content.
     
  15. Damin J Toell

    Damin J Toell Producer

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  16. Claes Ljunghorn

    Claes Ljunghorn Stunt Coordinator

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