VistaVision--film by film chat and vote

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by benbess, Apr 24, 2011.

  1. JoHud

    JoHud Producer

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    Well, Artists and Models is generally ranked highly partly due to the introduction of Frank Tashlin as director, and I'd personally say it is one of their best. The Levy biography "King of Comedy" notes that there was very little trouble between the two stars during it's production, especially compared to Hollywood or Bust, which was a much more stressful picture for Tashlin.

    3 Ring Circus seems to have a sort of infamy in that it is a milestone in the erosion of the duo. It went far over-budget due to both Jerry and Dean having problems with the script they were given and neither showed up for work. The set and staff layed idle for days before a compromise was reached. Still, it was overall a troubled production. Never saw it myself due to it's unusual absence on DVD.

    Regarding Bob Hope's pictures, I'm surprised Paramount only released two of his features. Those could have easily been put in a boxed set like their Martin & Lewis or Elvis sets.
     
  2. benbess

    benbess Cinematographer

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    JoHud: Thanks for your report on artists and models. Sounds like one of their better pairings. Which 2-3 of their movies do you think are the best?


    The next three on the list seem quite obscure and unlikely candidates for blu-ray. One, however, Hell's Island, is a late entry into the film noir genre, and does sound good if you like that kind of film (and I do)...



    [*]
    The Girl Rush (1955)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hell%27s_Island
     
  3. JoHud

    JoHud Producer

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    If I had to choose 3, I'd probably choose The Caddy, Living it Up, and Artists and Models. Though I agree with Matt H in that I generally like the interaction in the earlier, pre-feud films more
     
  4. Rob_Ray

    Rob_Ray Screenwriter
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    Lucy Gallant was a staple of Houston television when I was growing up, but I haven't seen it in decades. It's one of those women's pictures Jane Wyman was turning out in the mid-fifties and and is notable for cameos by then Texas Governor Allen Shivers and designer Edith Head, both playing themselves. Jane's a New Yorker stranded in a Texas Oil Boom Town in the pre-war forties who decides to stick around and sell the latest New York fashions to the nouveau riche wives of the oilmen. She meets her match in Chuck Heston and has to choose between her rollercoaster success as a fashion retailer and settling down with Chuck. This being the fifties, doing both simulaneously isn't an option. The story spans several years (1941 to the present day 1955) and is a precusor to Giant in that everyone's wallowing in the mud of a rowdy Western town in the opening reels and joining the '50s Texas version of the Jet Set by the final ones. As always, Thelma Ritter steals every scene she's in as a character similar to the one she played in How the West Was Won. Not a prime candidate for BluRay but like any VistaVision movie, would make for nice eye candy while watching the soaper plot unfold.
     
  5. benbess

    benbess Cinematographer

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    Actually sounds pretty interesting to me. I have wide tastes and like Westerns and well as soapers. This sounds like you kinda get both. And you're right--thema Ritter steals the scene in everything she's in. I just watched Letter to Three Wives and she did it in that. And of course she does it in Rear Window too.

    Interesting you mention Giant. I am watching that one right now on HD netflix streaming, and it looks much nicer than I've ever seen it. Although come to think of it I only saw it once before on a bad vhs pan and scan. Most widescreen movies just don't work at all well that way. I think Warner must be getting ready to put out a blu-ray of Giant, because it looked great to me.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. john a hunter

    john a hunter Supporting Actor

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    While VV looks great on BD, its achilles' heel was always its sound system-glorified mono pretending to be stereo. That's why I will always prefer CS from this era and looking forward to some more titles to follow The Robe.
     
  7. benbess

    benbess Cinematographer

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    Yes, there certainly were advantages and disadvantages to each system. When it comes to PQ VV seems tops to me. But in general I just want more classic films on blu...


    [​IMG]
     
  8. benbess

    benbess Cinematographer

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    JoHud: Thanks so much for this list. I'm going to try to look em up on netflix.
     
  9. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
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    The Girl Rush was a big dud. After her smashing success in the musical Wonderful Town on Broadway, this was fashioned to take advantage of Rosalind Russell as a musical star. Only, it didn't. Gloria DeHaven who could sing really well sang rings around Russell.
     
  10. benbess

    benbess Cinematographer

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    Thanks for the warning. Wow, you have a pretty encyclopedic knowledge of these films Matt. I'm impressed.

    Next on the list:


     
  11. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I've seen it more than a few times over the last 50 years or so. I have the DVD that came out from Paramount back in 2005. I doubt we'll ever see it on BRD, but you never know. The accuracy of the historical story is not good, but the cast is very good.






    Crawdaddy
     
  12. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    This film has been a guilty pleasure of mine since my childhood. The interplay between Wyman and Heston makes this film so for me along with Demarest and Ritter. God, I wish I can get this title on DVD at least.






    Crawdaddy
     
  13. benbess

    benbess Cinematographer

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    Yeah, it is a good cast. And it sounds like it has enough entertainment value for you to buy it, which says something. I realize there's likely to be some racism in the portrayal of Indians in this era, but how would you rate it on that level--about average? And how is the beautiful American landscape in this film? For some reason I like Heston in most things he does, even though as an actor he's maybe a little blunt. He's very good, for instance, in The Greatest Show on Earth, imho.
     
  14. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I don't rate films made in prior eras by the level of racism, otherwise, as a minority, I could never enjoy their entertainment value. I accept for what they are, in the time they were made.

    They filmed alot of the movie out in Wyoming so the scenary is beautiful.






    Crawdaddy
     
  15. Reed Grele

    Reed Grele Screenwriter

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    Let's not forget this classic:

    [​IMG]

    The Court Jester DVD looks pretty good. A new Blu-Ray transfer should look great!
     
  16. Douglas Monce

    Douglas Monce Producer

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    I haven't seen Hell's Island, but any film starring John Payne is okay in my book!

    Doug
     
  17. benbess

    benbess Cinematographer

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    Yes! I love this film, but I haven't seen it in 20 years, and then in a pan and scan. I think the Paramount guy said they are probably doing this one! I read recently that it had a lavish budget for the era, about $4 million, but was shockingly a money losing movie at the box office at the time of its release.
     
  18. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
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    The Seven Little Foys was another biopic for Bob Hope playing the father of the famous vaudeville family. Probably its most famous moment is when Hope and James Cagney (reprising his Oscar-winning role as George M. Cohan) do a tap dance together. It's one of Hope's best films from the 1950s.

    The Rose Tattoo is one of the few versions of a Tennessee Williams play I've never seen. In a popular thread in the DVD section of the forum, several users who have watched every Best Picture Oscar nominee declare this the worst movie ever nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. The play is a lovely read (it won the Tony Award as Best Play), but having never seen the film version, I can't comment further.
     
  19. ahollis

    ahollis Lead Actor

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    I agree with you on Bob Hope's performance in THE SEVEN LITTLE FOYS. To bad Shout! missed the boat and released it last December as full-screen. So far it has never been released widescreen to the home viewer. As you said, his dance with Cagney is a great bit of film history. I almost forget that it is Hope and Cagney dancing and not Foy and Cohan.
     
  20. Hoppy

    Hoppy Extra

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    I watched Hell's Island recently on Netflix Instant Watch, it may not be Kansas City Confidential (also directed by Phil Karlson), but I really enjoyed it. I also enjoyed the color photography and would love to see it on blu!
     

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