LEGEND(1986)A work of perfection

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Bryan^H, Jun 4, 2011.

  1. Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Producer

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2005
    Messages:
    3,672
    Likes Received:
    689
    Legend is a great film. Ok, well to me it has always been great. When friends mention the turning point in their cinema loving lives, I hear the usual...Kubrick, Spielberg, Coppola.

    When I mention Ridley Scotts' Legend, there is a bit of confusion, and laughter.

    "You pick that over Blade Runner?"

    Yes.


    Maybe it's the massive, lush set design. Maybe it's the contrast of beautiful brights, and chill inducing darks. Or maybe just my love of the fantasy genre. I do know that I Love this film. This is in my opinion cinematic perfection.
    Pure escapist entertainment. What the big screen was invented for.

    I pay no mind to negative reviews(I think 99% of critic reviews are as such).



    I watched the Blu-Ray. Both versions. The color timing is wildly different than the dvd, but this is a good thing. Legend has never looked better. The theatrical cut is what I am used to, but the Directors cut is growing on me(especially the beautiful score by Jerry Goldsmith). I feel as though I should send Universal a check for more money, because paying $15 for a film this beautiful makes me feel like a criminal.

    Owning this title on Blu-Ray is a dream come true.
     
  2. Adam Gregorich

    Owner

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 1999
    Messages:
    15,680
    Likes Received:
    675
    Location:
    The Other Washington
    Real Name:
    Adam
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts Bryan. I have always enjoyed Legend and picked up the Blu-ray from Amazon this week but haven't had a chance to watch it yet. I'm looking forward to it.
     
  3. dpippel

    dpippel HTF Premium Member
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2000
    Messages:
    4,162
    Likes Received:
    696
    Real Name:
    Doug
    A must-own for me as well. Time to sell the DVD! Too bad that Universal totally jumped the shark on the cover art. It's simply God-awful.


    Any thoughts on the transfer Bryan? How does it look?
     
  4. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Producer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2003
    Messages:
    5,796
    Likes Received:
    3,465
    Real Name:
    Josh Steinberg
    I'm kind of embarrassed to admit it - but I've never seen "Legend" - that said, I probably should. Is there one version better than the other that should be the one I see?
     
  5. robbbb1138

    robbbb1138 Second Unit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2008
    Messages:
    265
    Likes Received:
    0
    I watched everything on the Blu-Ray a few days ago. I thought it looked about as good as can be expected given the source material. The detail on some of the make-up was really impressive in some scenes. I'm not the movie's biggest fan, but I'm so obsessed with Alien and this feels like a spiritual brother to Alien and Blade Runner. There's something about it that just clearly marks it as being from the same filmmaker and it's something that Scott has never achieved again. Like those movies, this is the work of a true artist.


    I never saw the movie before DVD, so I have no attachment to the theatrical version. I like The Director's Cut better because it just makes more sense to me and has a few things about it that make it feel more like a fairy tale. Goldsmith's score isn't the greatest to me, but I think the "love theme" is really solid.
     
  6. Dick

    Dick Producer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    May 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,464
    Likes Received:
    1,505
    Real Name:
    Rick
    Despite Scott's disclaimer regarding the PQ of the director's cut, I found it mesmerizing and beautiful. Since first seeing (and hearing it), this has been my favorite version, hands down. For one (important) thing, it withholds the appearance of Darkness until quite a ways into the film, whereas the theatrical reveals him from the start. As they say, it's what ya don't see...
     
  7. montrealfilmguy

    montrealfilmguy Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2011
    Messages:
    541
    Likes Received:
    4
    Josh,


    The only way you could embarrass yourself would be by saying this.


    "ive never seen it and i never intend to watch it.


    I'm sure that's never the case with you.


    And i'd be tempted to also say,watch everything on the Bluray.


    Then come back and give us one of them great long posts you usually do.
     
  8. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Producer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2003
    Messages:
    5,796
    Likes Received:
    3,465
    Real Name:
    Josh Steinberg
    I will definitely check it out sometime - with the caveat that fantasy isn't my favorite genre, so I may not be the target audience, and more to the point, I may not be up for watching two versions of the film if the first one doesn't do it for me. (I can imagine someone who hated Lord Of The Rings would not be interested in watching a longer version of Lord Of The Rings to convince them otherwise - for the record, I liked Lord Of The Rings.)


    Is the director's cut a very recent thing, or was it released shortly after the original film? I'm trying to get a sense of if it's more of a Blade Runner-this-is-what-I-was-trying-to-make-and-they-got-in-my-way director's cut, or more of a George Lucas-look-what-I-can-do-now! director's cut. Either way, I'm probably long overdue for checking this out in some form or another.


    (I'm really scared to admit this, but I hated Labyrinth. Maybe those two films are nothing alike but they're all kinda blended in my memory of 80s pop culture fantasy epics as being sort of the same thing, which I realize is probably terribly unfair.)
     
  9. Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Producer

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2005
    Messages:
    3,672
    Likes Received:
    689


    It is very film-like. Nice texture, and grain.
    Comparing it to the upconverted s-dvd, it is a small miracle as it adds much more detail.
    Fans of the film can breathe easy, this is quite a looker.
     
  10. robbbb1138

    robbbb1138 Second Unit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2008
    Messages:
    265
    Likes Received:
    0

    The DC didn't show up until 2001, but the claim is that it's legitimately an earlier cut that's different from both the US and Euro versions that was recovered for the DVD release.
     
  11. dpippel

    dpippel HTF Premium Member
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2000
    Messages:
    4,162
    Likes Received:
    696
    Real Name:
    Doug

    Thanks for your impressions. Just ordered it from Amazon and I'm looking forward to a revisit. I haven't watched Legend in over 6 years.
     
  12. Mike_Richardson

    Mike_Richardson Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2002
    Messages:
    639
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree with the OP, what a brilliant transfer. Goes a long way to restoring Scott's vision for the film since the visuals are such a key component to the picture's allure. I realize the DC comes from an answer print but he needn't have been so critical of it -- it looks spectacular and superior to the American version too.


    The DC is the movie Scott originally made and preferred out of all the versions. It was found after an extensive search and was taken from an answer print, which was literally the only version they could find. It was not an "afterthought" or one of these Director's Cuts you talk about where directors tinker after the fact.


    Though the US theatrical release version has its fans, its sole reason for existence was borne out of commercial motivations, not artistic ones. It was cut down and re-scored purely out of commercial considerations at the behest of Universal studio brass -- most notably Sid Sheinberg, the same guy who wanted to trash Terry Gilliam's BRAZIL several months prior. Unfortunately Scott didn't fight for his original version and probably was talked into it, which is a shame because in every way the short US release version is a travesty: the plot makes less sense, the cuts are jarring, and Tangerine Dream's electronic scoring (which I realize appeals to people who like their music) not only feels anachronistic but was a pure cash-grab to try and push sales of the soundtrack album, and appeal to the teenage market. (There's a hilariously awful Bryan Ferry song that plays over the end credits too). It truly was the only reason for that bastardized edit.


    The Director's Cut is Scott's original, preferred version of the film. Goldsmith's music was not only conceived for the movie, his songs (with lyrics by John Bettis) were a PART OF THE SCRIPT. Goldsmith's music was his favorite out of every score he composed, and with good reason: it's classical but lyrical, haunting and perfect. It totally changes the tone of the film.


    Beyond that, the 113 min. version flows better in every regard. Restored dialogue helps to totally smooth over pacing, and clarify the story. It's fascinating to watch it, then go back in and see how much the whole intention and execution of the film are utterly ruined by what Universal wanted for the American release cut. Scott's DC has a timeless fantasy feel; the US version is like an 89 minute MTV music video from the mid '80s.


    That said, if you do like the US version, you can still see it on the disc...it's a great release that will satisfy everyone :)
     
  13. cineMANIAC

    cineMANIAC Cinematographer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2008
    Messages:
    2,056
    Likes Received:
    289
    Location:
    New York City
    Real Name:
    Luis
    Personally, part of the film's appeal comes from the realism of the sets, as opposed to films like Labyrinth, where everything is obviously fake-looking. I can't watch these kinds of movies if, subconsciously, I know the action is taking place in some studio with mattes in the background. Listening to the commentary, Ridley talks about how they went the extra mile to make the forest scenes look as realistic as possible and I appreciate this kind of effort in ALL movies. Legend comes right after The NeverEnding Story as personal favorites in the fantasy genre. Also, while re-watching Legend recently, I couldn't help but think of Avatar, especially during the forest scenes. I have a feeling Cameron may have been influenced a bit by this film.
     
  14. Scott Calvert

    Scott Calvert Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 1998
    Messages:
    885
    Likes Received:
    2
    I wouldn't call Legend the film a work of perfection but the bluray presentation is certainly close enough. The movie is quite corny and even embarrassing in many spots but I love to put it on just to look at it. There is a level of production design and photography in this thing that is a marvel to behold. I don't think it's been equaled on that level since. Thankfully, the bluray transfer is spectacular. Easily the best bluray Universal has ever put out.
     
  15. trajan

    trajan Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2009
    Messages:
    1,198
    Likes Received:
    468
    This is my least favorite Ridley Scott film. Why he even bothered to make this film is a mystery to me.
     
  16. montrealfilmguy

    montrealfilmguy Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2011
    Messages:
    541
    Likes Received:
    4
    it's ok trajan


    you can watch the next one he did right after...that is if you can locate it.


    cop film with Tom Berenger called Someone to watch over me,then come back to tell us

    how you love Legend.
     
  17. robbbb1138

    robbbb1138 Second Unit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2008
    Messages:
    265
    Likes Received:
    0

    It's clear from the docs that Scott and the writer had a strong vision for the movie. The final product could have been much stronger, but the artistry involved makes me think a family film was his "safe" choice after Blade Runner.
     
  18. Mike Williams

    Mike Williams Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2003
    Messages:
    1,020
    Likes Received:
    1

    While I absolutely LOVE Aliens and Blade Runner, to say that Ridley never achieved that level of filmmaking I simply must disagree with. I know that Gladiator has its detractors, but I think it's a marvelous film, and the Director's Cut of "Kingdom of Heaven" is an absolute masterpiece.
     
  19. Ed St. Clair

    Ed St. Clair Producer

    Joined:
    May 7, 2001
    Messages:
    3,320
    Likes Received:
    0

    My guess & its only a guess, is that Riley only saw the transfer of the "DC" for the SD DVD release.

    (or, that's what his opinion of which version looks better comes from)

    Because the new scan of the "DC" outshines the current "TC" transfer; IMO.


    The "DC" is eye & ear candy!!
     
  20. Lord Dalek

    Lord Dalek Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2005
    Messages:
    2,913
    Likes Received:
    383
    Real Name:
    Joel Henderson
    Well both transfers on the dvd looked pretty terrible so it's not too hard to improve on them. Really looking forward to watching this blu-ray even though there's nothing new added from the old 2-disc,
     

Share This Page