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A Few Words About A few words about...™ Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Aug 24, 2014.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    Adapted from the novel, Nunnally Johnson's screenplay for Mr. Hobbs at least gives director Henry Koster something with which to work.  The early '60s was not a wonderful time for family-based comedies -- possibly a bit too antiseptic at times.

    Mr. Hobbs works nicely within the parameters set forth, and remains an entertaining, while not particularly stellar (with all due respect to HTF critic Kevin Koster) production.  I would call it second-tier Koster.

    I had a shot chat with Mr. Koster yesterday -- he's been off working out of state and has not yet had a chance to view this Blu-ray -- and he gave me an interesting anecdote.  Apparently there was to be a sight gag in the film.  Director Koster and possibly Mr. Johnson had decided that the tall, lanky, Mr. Stewart would be driving something so small, that he would have to unwind himself from the drivers' seat.  

    The studio would have not of it, and insisted upon using standard studio fare, as supplied by the manufacturer.

    Visually, Mr. Hobbs looks a bit weak, but not disturbingly so.  Several sequences take on a slightly greenish cast.

    But generally, the fifty-two year-old production looks pleasing on Blu-ray, and is especially nice to see in its full CinemaScope glory.

    A subtle request to Twilight Time...

    Flight of the Phoenix, please.

    Image - 3.5

    Audio -5

    Recommended.

    RAH

     
  2. John Hermes

    John Hermes Well-Known Member

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    I assume the audio sync is fine throughout the film? The German disc is out-of-sync for part of the movie.
     
  3. Mark-P

    Mark-P Well-Known Member

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    I watched the Twilight Time Blu-ray in its entirety and didn't notice any sync issues. That is unless you are one of those people who can detect synchronization down to the sprocket hole!
     
  4. ahollis

    ahollis Well-Known Member

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    I didn't detect a problem with audio sync either. This is just a lovely fun film that I can watch two or three times a year. I remember seeing it as a child in pajamas at the local drive-in. I feel asleep when the second feature started so I have no idea what it was.
     
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  5. ROclockCK

    ROclockCK Premium
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    No sound sync issues detected here either. Apart from some sporadic image weaknesses mentioned by Mr. Harris - an older 'Scope HD transfer; so it is what it was - TT's encode was typically solid with very good sound specs, especially their handling of Mancini's isolated score.

    A moot point either way. Nothing could blunt the pleasure of watching Jimmy Stewart and Maureen O'Hara take this cute-redux material to the sublime. With such seasoned vets, line-reading from their 1040s would have been a hoot.
     
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  6. ROclockCK

    ROclockCK Premium
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    In our household, there were three "no deliberation required" movies each year Allen...the latest from:

    [*]Jimmy Stewart
    [*]John Wayne
    [*]Elvis Presley
    [/list]
    Of course, some of these turned out better than others, but each performer represented a mark of quality...a trusted brand. Any of those names in a newspaper ad was enough.
     
  7. Richard Gallagher

    Richard Gallagher Well-Known Member
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    I mentioned to Kevin Koster that I have a soft spot for this film. It was showing at the Bedford Playhouse in the summer of 1962, when I was a young caddy at the Bedford Golf & Tennis Club. During the film's run it rained for three or four days, so there was little work to be had. Three afternoons in a row my friends and I went into town and watched the matinee of Mr. Hobbs.
     
  8. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Well-Known Member
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    To be specific about the car gag - the original concept was for Stewart to be driving a REALLY small car like a Renault Dauphine or a Morris Minor. There's an early bit that survives into the movie of him being in traffic in between two big trucks and choking on the exhaust. The other bit that was supposed to happen was the sight gag of him trying to get in and out of the car. Fox's head of production told the show that Fox had a deal for free picture cars from Chrysler - so Stewart's character wound up driving a Plymouth Valiant instead... (All of this comes from my father's account of the movie in his memoir, Adventures in Hollywood)
     
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  9. ljgranberry

    ljgranberry Well-Known Member

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    I want to second Mr. Harris' plea for Twilight Time to release THE FLIGHT OF THE PHOENIX - one of the great movies of the 1960's and one of the best from that most interesting of directors, Robert Aldrich.
     
  10. atfree

    atfree Premium
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    I'll add a third to that!
     
  11. ScottGros117

    ScottGros117 Well-Known Member

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    ...and I'll add a fourth!
     
  12. Kyrsten Brad

    Kyrsten Brad Well-Known Member

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    Well, I mighty just add this one to my Christmas Purchase List 2014.

    Now if Twilight Time would only do a Blu for Summer Rental (1985). Would make for a interesting comparison.
     

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