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A Few Words About A few words about...™ Stars and Stripes Forever -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Jan 22, 2012.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    When Fox is working with original three-strip Technicolor elements, as opposed to their obligatory dupes, something magical occurs.


    One look at Henry Koster's Stars and Stripes Forever, and even the most uninitiated will realize that they're seeing the real thing.


    The changeover from nitrate to safety elements for negatives was made beginning in 1951. 1952 saw a mix of three-strip and Eastman Color tri-pack photography. To the best of my knowledge only a single Fox three-strip show was shot on safety in 1951 -- Halls of Montezuma. Everything in 1952 was safety based, along with the slow switch to Eastman.


    My point is, that it is only by a quirk of technological fate, that this stunningly beautiful Technicolor production has survived. A year earlier, and we would have imagery far less original and perfect. A year later, and it might have been shot on the earliest incarnation of Eastman Color.


    I don't wish anyone to take my technical meanderings and presume that it is only the technical that makes this film important.


    Hardly.


    Superb performances, brought to the screen by ace director Koster, and photographed to perfection by Charles C. Clarke (Tarzan and His Mate, Margie, Miracle on 34th Street, Captain from Castile, Carousel) create a superb entertainment.


    A great production, which allows us to examine the finest capabilities of the Technicolor process at the end of it's technological reign.


    A gorgeous Blu-ray.


    Highly Recommended.


    RAH
     
  2. Guest

    Yes, I agree with you. S&SF looks great and has a fine performance by Clifton Webb. Young Debra Paget looks great too! Beautiful color and contrast.
     
  3. bigshot

    bigshot Screenwriter

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    I just got my copy from the contest in the mail. Thanks HTF! Looking forward to watching it. I wonder if inattentive folks will pick it up off the shelf and buy it thinking it's The Music Man. The cover sure looks like it might be.
     
  4. bigshot

    bigshot Screenwriter

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    Watched it tonight. Incredible image quality... and one of the most absurd endings I've ever seen!
     
  5. jaaguir

    jaaguir Stunt Coordinator

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    Well the whole movie is pretty much fluff. There are no obstacles of any kind for Webb's character. He just tours the world and marches with his band. They have to send Wagner's character to war so there's some tension for the third act. You could say it's as uneventful as "Meet me in St. Louis", but without all the rich character interaction stuff that makes that one so special. But it's enjoyable old-fashioned lightweight entertainment. Maybe this is an improper comparison (because they were made 8 years apart) but I thought this looked better than "Meet me in St. Louis". The dupes looked better (all the shots involved in dissolves). The ones in MMiSL looked so much softer and grainier than the rest of the movie, it was too noticeable, to my taste.
     
  6. bigshot

    bigshot Screenwriter

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    I don't mind fluff, but when they got to Robert Wagner, wooden legs and tubas, I was just shaking my head.
     
  7. haineshisway

    haineshisway Screenwriter

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    This is not getting nearly enough attention - it is spectacular, and I agree that it looks better than Meet Me in St. Louis - it's what Technicolor looks like! Look at those BLUE skies - gorgeous. Was this film even reviewed here?
     
  8. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
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    It sure was. I did it. Check the right side panel for "Related Forum Threads" and you'll see a link to the review.
     
  9. haineshisway

    haineshisway Screenwriter

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    Great I'll check it out - oddly it didn't come up in a search.
     

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