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DVD Reviews

HTF REVIEW: That's Entertainment - The Complete Collection (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED).

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33 replies to this topic

#1 of 34 OFFLINE   Herb Kane

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Posted October 21 2004 - 06:32 AM

My Top 25 Noirs:

25. 711 Ocean Drive (1950), 24. Odds Against Tomorrow (1959), 23. Desperate (1947), 22. Pushover (1954), 21. The Blue Dahlia (1946), 20. The File on Thelma Jordon (1949), 19. He Ran All the Way (1951), 18. The Asphalt Jungle (1950), 17. The Killing (1956), 16. I Walk Alone (1948),...

#2 of 34 OFFLINE   Cameron Yee

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Posted October 21 2004 - 06:38 AM

Thanks Herb. I catch snippets of one of the documentaries on my local public tv station once in awhile, but can't say I have seen the whole thing. I can pick this up for $32 at CostCo and was curious about the specifics of the set. I think it would make a great gift too!

#3 of 34 OFFLINE   Conrad_SSS


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Posted October 21 2004 - 06:50 AM

I am already loving this set and have watched it several times in the last week. Seeing Herb's wonderful and thoughfully-written review is so exciting, because this is truly an item that those HTF members that may not be familiar enough with these films, will hopefully be motivated to give this great set a try. Bravo, Herb!

#4 of 34 OFFLINE   ArthurMy


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Posted October 21 2004 - 09:31 AM

I second most of Herb's well-thought-out comments. It's a must-have set for anyone interested in film history, musicals, or just plain great entertainment value. I love the first film, which I saw the day it opened in the theater, and the DVD is a perfect replication of that experience (as Herb rightly and thankfully points out). The full-frame version, for me, is a useless space-waster, although it was good of Warners to include it. The sound on the first two films took my breath away - really showing off how great these things were recorded and how wonderfully they were remastered for 5.1. The third film has always been the least interesting for me, for a variety of reasons - it seems more "home video" than feature quality, I hate the anonymous narrator at the beginning - why was that necessary with all those great stars at your beck and call? The fact that it's directed by the editors of the first two films just shows that editors don't always make interesting directors. I think III is more the product of the home video department, and for me, it shows. Also, the sound is not nearly as good on III - and I must say I don't think Marc Shaiman's orchestrations and arrangements have near the luster or brilliance of Henry Mancini's or Nelson Riddle's, both of whom provided astounding work on the first two films. Those are minor caveats, however, and the set is a glory and should be bought by everyone who professes to have a love for classic film.

#5 of 34 OFFLINE   danak


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Posted October 21 2004 - 09:31 AM

Nice review Herb. I ended up buying the set because it looks like Netflix won't carry the bonus disc. The only negative that I've found so far is that Part 2's cover art is really out of whack with the other 3 discs (it's white while the others are black). Otherwise, it's a really nice set. Dana in MD

#6 of 34 OFFLINE   Mark B

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Posted October 21 2004 - 10:26 AM

Thanks for listing all of the outtakes. I've been dying to know what they were going to be, and feared there would be nothing "new" here, but there are 3 I don't have and 2 are full versions of numbers from the third film. Of course, having them on DVD makes them all exciting. Can't wait to get the set. I'm holding out hoping that I'll be one of the 25 winners at the TCM website. Yeah, right. I can dream, can't I? Mark

#7 of 34 OFFLINE   Mike Frezon

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Posted October 21 2004 - 04:04 PM

This set is long-awaited. An excellent review, Herb! images/smilies/thumbsup.gif

My fourth disc was also sans insert. A shame considering how nicely-done the inserts for the first three discs are. Too bad.

There's Jessie the yodeling cowgirl. Bullseye, he's Woody's horse. Pete the old prospector. And, Woody, the man himself.Of course, it's time for Woody's RoundUp. He's the very best! He's the rootinest, tootinest cowboy in the wild, wild west!

HTF Rules | HTF Mission Statement | Father of the Bride

Dieting with my Dog & Heart to Heart/Hand in Paw by Peggy Frezon

#8 of 34 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted October 21 2004 - 11:57 PM

Herb, Great review as always like some others I have been enjoying this dvd set for about two weeks now. Crawdaddy



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#9 of 34 OFFLINE   Ken_McAlinden



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Posted October 22 2004 - 08:42 AM

From the video assessment:


Compilation and documentary films are very difficult to rate in terms of A/V quality...Of course, these are compilation films...Having said that, keep in mind, these are compilations films

So let me get this straight: What kind of films are these again? images/smilies/biggrin.gif

Just funnin' ya. Great review of a great set. I mentioned it in the other thread, and I'll mention it again here, the 16:9 enhanced sides appear to be new transfers with a lot of improvements to the clips, some more significant than others. The 4:3 side appears to be an older transfer, possibly from the previous laserdisc set. Consequently, the advantages of watching those versions on a 4:3 set are not as great as they might seem at first blush.

Ken McAlinden
Livonia, MI USA

#10 of 34 OFFLINE   Doug Bull

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Posted October 22 2004 - 10:20 AM

After a slight delay from my on-line supplier, my TE discs are now finally on a plane somewhere over the Pacific.

Reading the excellent review, I just can't wait for them to arrive.


#11 of 34 OFFLINE   BarryR


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Posted October 22 2004 - 12:31 PM

I know it wasn't part of the series per se, but there's always that "orphaned" sequel of sorts, THAT'S DANCING! (1985). If that was somehow included in the set, well, then it'd be quite a bonus feature!


#12 of 34 OFFLINE   Derek_McL


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Posted October 22 2004 - 01:08 PM

Sounds absolutely superb, surprisingly really as I love musicals I was wavering a little on this. Now I know I've got to get it ! I've seen these films many times but the extras look worth the price alone.
By the way discuss these wonderful films and others at my New Message board on Classic films from the silents to the latest releases.


#13 of 34 OFFLINE   Roger Rollins

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Posted October 22 2004 - 02:11 PM

You won't regret it, Derek. It's pleasures are addictive!

#14 of 34 OFFLINE   RobertSiegel



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Posted October 22 2004 - 06:12 PM

WOW! I just got my copy today and I can't believe how much work they put into this set. Compared to the laserdiscs, it looks to me as if each film clip was completely remastered, cleaned up, and inserted back in. Never before have these clips looked so good to me...and sounded so good. What a great series of films. I'd never seen any of the three completely, and what a great experience it is. The extras are great too, that great movie nostalgia that is top rate. Even the shorts used before look somewhat remastered. Highly recommend!!!! I agree with an earlier post, THAT'S DANCING would have been a great addition to this set, even at a slightly higher price.

Classics on Blu-ray is what it is all about!

#15 of 34 OFFLINE   Roger Rollins

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Posted October 22 2004 - 06:40 PM

Although I'd buy it separately, I'm very glad they didn't sully this set by including THAT'S DANCING. THAT'S DANCING is not about MGM or the MGM musicals. It has some fine MGM clips in it, but more of the film is not about MGM, than is, and it wouldn't have belonged here at all. THAT'S DANCING has some wonderful moments, but as a whole piece, it's a big disappointment. I attended the NY premiere, where audiences walked in on a high, and extited like it was a wake. Any film that sends you out of the theater with Michael Jackson's Thriller was doomed for failure!

#16 of 34 OFFLINE   Mark B

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Posted October 23 2004 - 12:57 AM

I agree. THAT'S DANCING! had way too many mediocre segments, and has no place with these three fims. The only highlight for me at the time was the "If I Only Had a Brian" outtake, and some clips in widescreen that I only knew in P/S. Other than that......zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Mark

#17 of 34 OFFLINE   Roger Rollins

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Posted October 24 2004 - 04:17 AM

Despite the fact that its flaws are numerous, a separate release of THAT'S DANCING would still be nice...just so long as it's not promoted with the T.E. films or indicated as an MGM compilation, which it most certainly is not. There are still pleasures to be had in it, the Busby Berkeley sequence, the numbers from WEST SIDE STORY and SWEET CHARITY, and one of mt favorite MGM numbers of all time, THINKING OF YOU with Astaire And Vera-Ellen. I hear the THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT collection is selling very well (many stores sold out). so hopefully this bodes welll for more musicals. even mediocre ones like THAT'S DANCING. The great option with DVD is that you can scan through the boring parts of TD (of which there are many!).

#18 of 34 OFFLINE   Chris Lockwood

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Posted October 24 2004 - 04:58 AM

> I know it wasn't part of the series per se, but there's always that "orphaned" sequel of sorts, THAT'S DANCING!

And don't forget the horror compilation THAT'S KILLING. images/smilies/smile.gif

This set should be great for finding old movies to check out.

#19 of 34 OFFLINE   Roger Rollins

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Posted October 24 2004 - 05:27 AM

There's also the spoof trailer in KENTUCKY FRIED MOVIE... "That's Armageddon!"

#20 of 34 OFFLINE   Chris Cheese

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Posted October 24 2004 - 07:49 AM

I've never seen this, but I'm considering it as a gift for my girlfriend who loves musicals. After this review, I'm pretty confident that she'll love it. I do have one question though. How are the songs handled in the documentaries? Are they just clips of songs or are they the full songs?

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