-

Jump to content



Photo
- - - - -

A few words about...™ Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid -- in Blu-Ray

A Few Words About

This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
32 replies to this topic

#1 of 33 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

Robert Harris

    Lead Actor

  • 7,488 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 08 1999
  • Real Name:Robert Harris

Posted May 10 2008 - 03:50 PM

George Roy Hill's Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid was brilliant filmmaking in 1969 and remains brilliant today.

The performances by Mr. Newman and Mr. Redford are sharply honed and up to date in every way. Likewise the screenplay by William Goldman remains remarkably textured, working a thin line between the old western genre and the modern buddy film.

Butch Cassidy has stood the test of time.

But like any extremely popular film four decades old, it is physically a bit frayed around the edges.

Once parts of the original negative are damaged or gone, there is nothing to be done but to rely on preservation elements produced at the time. But the truth about those elements is that normally they were vaulted without a care -- literally never examined or tested to see if they would answer back in case of a problem. I'm not referring to Fox here. I'm referring to the industry.

And there are some problems.

Those among you who fit into the nit-picker category will note dupe sections, which appear derived from separation masters. They have a bit of flicker, some discoloration at the bottom of the frame, occasional dirt and other assorted discoloration anomalies.

Grain haters will also have a field day, as Butch was (I believe) photographed on Eastman 5254, the same stock as Bullitt and all of the films of the early '70s. It has a magnificent grain structure, and wonderful color characteristics. This is actually one of my favorite film stocks.

The audio, both in 5.1 stereo as well as the original mono seem crisp and clean, especially as derived from the DTS HD Master tracks.

The truth, which is the bottom line, is that nit-picking is not in order here, as the surviving elements are what they are, and no amount of work, investment or complaining is going to change a thing.

Great films do not age well from a purely physical perspective, while poorly received films seem to age beautifully.

I tend to look at it this way, which is a perspective that I suggest.

As a four decade old production, Butch Cassidy still seems fresh and vibrant to both those revisiting its charms as well as those who have never seen it. This is one of those films that appears that it could have been made yesterday. But here's the perspective that seems to put things in their place.

Go back an equal number of years from 1969, and one is just reaching the dawn of sound -- orthochromatic black & white negatives, along with people speaking into flower vases. With the exception of Mr. Mamoulian's work, a pretty difficult transitional era.

I can easily accept this wonderful film for what it is, and where today's elements allow it to be taken.

I'm certain that a full 90% of viewers will never notice anything amiss here, which is why I suggest to the nit-pickers...

relax, allow yourselves to be taken back to the wonderful war years of the Nixon administration, and take in Butch Cassidy for what it still is -- one of most entertaining films ever created.

There are no caveats here.

Fox Home Video's Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid in Blu-Ray comes Extremely Highly Recommended. This is one not to be missed!

RAH

"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did." T.E. Lawrence


#2 of 33 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

Robert Crawford

    Studio Mogul

  • 24,622 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 09 1998
  • Real Name:Robert
  • LocationMichigan

Posted May 10 2008 - 05:41 PM

RAH,
Besides the film element problem you've noted, does this BRD have any other problems regarding color or film grain issues that didn't appear during the original theatrical run that those of us who were fortunate enough to view back then? I call them "issues" for lack of a better word, but of course, they weren't, but just the way the movie was chosen to be filmed by its great director and cinematographer.

Crawdaddy

 

Blu-ray Preorder Schedule

 


#3 of 33 OFFLINE   Mark-P

Mark-P

    Screenwriter

  • 2,309 posts
  • Join Date: Sep 26 2005
  • Real Name:Mark Probst
  • LocationCamas, WA

Posted May 10 2008 - 09:17 PM

Would you care to elaborate a little on the 5.1 track? I'm curious how it was derived. I know that Chace created a simulated stereo track in the 80s for the home video release, but the first DVD opted for the original mono sound, and the more recent DVD added a stereo track (probably the Chace track, but I don't know for sure, I only have the first DVD)

#4 of 33 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

Robert Harris

    Lead Actor

  • 7,488 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 08 1999
  • Real Name:Robert Harris

Posted May 10 2008 - 10:32 PM

The film looks as it did in 1969 with the exception of the dupe sections. A very nice transfer.

"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did." T.E. Lawrence


#5 of 33 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

Robert Crawford

    Studio Mogul

  • 24,622 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 09 1998
  • Real Name:Robert
  • LocationMichigan

Posted May 10 2008 - 10:36 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Harris
The film looks as it did in 1969 with the exception of the dupe sections. A very nice transfer.
That's what I thought. There are too many reviewers posting critical comments in their reviews that either haven't watch the film they're reviewing in the movie theater or don't watch enough film on the big screen to begin with in order to grasp an understanding about film grain and filmmakers choices regarding color schemes in the filming of their movies.

Crawdaddy

 

Blu-ray Preorder Schedule

 


#6 of 33 OFFLINE   Cees Alons

Cees Alons

    Executive Producer

  • 18,634 posts
  • Join Date: Jul 31 1997
  • Real Name:Cees Alons

Posted May 10 2008 - 11:43 PM

Quote:
no amount of work, investment or complaining is going to change a thing.
Hear, hear! Posted Image Posted Image

Ain't this true! (And a much more general truth in real life anyway, also known as the Humpty-Dumpty paradigm!).


Thanks a lot RAH, once more! Posted Image


Cees

#7 of 33 OFFLINE   Danny_N

Danny_N

    Stunt Coordinator

  • 245 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 02 2001

Posted May 11 2008 - 05:45 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Crawford
That's what I thought. There are too many reviewers posting critical comments in their reviews that either haven't watch the film they're reviewing in the movie theater or don't watch enough film on the big screen to begin with in order to grasp an understanding about film grain and filmmakers choices regarding color schemes in the filming of their movies.

Ain't that the truth. It also comes down to just being lazy and not doing their job properly as a reviewer (paid or unpaid). It's a shame though that these so called reviewers do influence people's buying habits.

Thanks RAH for your review and confirming what a German comparision already told me: this is an excellent transfer.

#8 of 33 OFFLINE   Dale MA

Dale MA

    Supporting Actor

  • 957 posts
  • Join Date: May 22 2004

Posted May 11 2008 - 07:09 AM

Excellent news. Shame I have to wait until the UK release date in December to view it myself.

#9 of 33 OFFLINE   Johannes S

Johannes S

    Stunt Coordinator

  • 120 posts
  • Join Date: May 27 2005

Posted May 11 2008 - 07:22 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dale MA
Excellent news. Shame I have to wait until the UK release date in December to view it myself.

Get the German edition, which has been released early in February.

It is region B, same picture and extras as the US release, except additional German dub.

Great release! Special recommendation!

Amazon.de: Butch Cassidy und Sundance Kid [Blu-ray]: Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Katharine Ross, Strother Martin, Henry Jones, William Goldman, Conrad L. Hall, Burt Bacharach, George Roy Hill: DVD

#10 of 33 OFFLINE   Dale MA

Dale MA

    Supporting Actor

  • 957 posts
  • Join Date: May 22 2004

Posted May 11 2008 - 07:30 AM

Interesting! I may indeed look into buying that. Thanks!

#11 of 33 OFFLINE   Peter Neski

Peter Neski

    Supporting Actor

  • 892 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 14 2005

Posted May 11 2008 - 09:22 AM

I would want to know if the Blue Ray is worth getting,I like the dvd,but heard
bad things about the Blue Ray mostly from someone who didn't know how the
film looked,I liked the DVD ,but is it worth it?

#12 of 33 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

Robert Harris

    Lead Actor

  • 7,488 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 08 1999
  • Real Name:Robert Harris

Posted May 11 2008 - 01:30 PM

The BD is, without a doubt, worth far more than the price of admission!

"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did." T.E. Lawrence


#13 of 33 OFFLINE   Goko

Goko

    Agent

  • 33 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 21 2008

Posted May 12 2008 - 05:04 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Crawford
There are too many reviewers posting critical comments in their reviews that either haven't watch the film they're reviewing in the movie theater or don't watch enough film on the big screen to begin with in order to grasp an understanding about film grain and filmmakers choices regarding color schemes in the filming of their movies.
Just to be fair, I saw Butch... in the movie theaters many a time when it was released and I have a tough time remembering anything beyond just the story. It would be pretty hard for a reviewer or anyone else for that matter to remember enough details of the presentation to make a fair comparison of the original theater run Vs the BR disc on older or even newer releases.
I would guess that reviewers, on the whole, gear their reviews to the masses. They really don't care about nit-picking a release to death with details (keep the review short and sweet - thank you RAH) and are mostly concerned with simply describing PQ/AQ as good, average, or bad. That's OK by me.
On another note - my worst pet peeve - are directors that alter their films from the theatrical presentations and serve them up on DVD SE without allowing viewing of the original presentation as part of the package, i.e Blade runner (since corrected) and Last of the Mohicans to name a few. Very irritating!!!

#14 of 33 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

Robert Crawford

    Studio Mogul

  • 24,622 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 09 1998
  • Real Name:Robert
  • LocationMichigan

Posted May 12 2008 - 05:14 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goko
Just to be fair, I saw Butch... in the movie theaters many a time when it was released and I have a tough time remembering anything beyond just the story. It would be pretty hard for a reviewer or anyone else for that matter to remember enough details of the presentation to make a fair comparison of the original theater run Vs the BR disc on older or even newer releases.
I would guess that reviewers, on the whole, gear their reviews to the masses. They really don't care about nit-picking a release to death with details (keep the review short and sweet - thank you RAH) and are mostly concerned with simply describing PQ/AQ as good, average, or bad. That's OK by me.
On another note - my worst pet peeve - are directors that alter their films from the theatrical presentations and serve them up on DVD SE without allowing viewing of the original presentation as part of the package, i.e Blade runner (since corrected) and Last of the Mohicans to name a few. Very irritating!!!
In some situations I would agree with you. However, this groundbreaking film wasn't tough for me to remember and I watch 50 or so movies a year in the movie theater. There are certain films that stay with you due to the film techniques used in it that you never seen before and this film is one of those rare films.

Crawdaddy

 

Blu-ray Preorder Schedule

 


#15 of 33 OFFLINE   Goko

Goko

    Agent

  • 33 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 21 2008

Posted May 12 2008 - 06:15 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Crawford
In some situations I would agree with you. However, this groundbreaking film wasn't tough for me to remember and I watch 50 or so movies a year in the movie theater. There are certain films that stay with you due to the film techniques used in it that you never seen before and this film is one of those rare films.
Point taken. I do vividly remember the 70mm theater presentations of films such as, FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE, 2001, IT'S A MAD, MAD...WORLD, and others. Now THAT was going to the movies. Posted Image

#16 of 33 OFFLINE   Walter Kittel

Walter Kittel

    Producer

  • 4,737 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 28 1998

Posted May 12 2008 - 07:09 AM

While perhaps better suited for another thread (and yes I'm beating a dead horse)...

Quote:
On another note - my worst pet peeve - are directors that alter their films from the theatrical presentations and serve them up on DVD SE without allowing viewing of the original presentation as part of the package, i.e Blade runner (since corrected) and Last of the Mohicans to name a few. Very irritating!!!

I simply could not agree more. I still watch Last of the Mohicans on Laserdisc despite the technical superiority of the last DVD release because it (the LD) does not contain that awful revised ending.

- Walter.
Fidelity to the source should always be the goal for Blu-ray releases.

#17 of 33 OFFLINE   Peter Neski

Peter Neski

    Supporting Actor

  • 892 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 14 2005

Posted May 19 2008 - 09:37 AM

Just got this ,and its was worth it,My only gripe is the fact that I have to
hold on to all three versions :It dosn't have the Original Making of Doc.which is only on the First dvd
Nor does it have th 1994 interviews which are on the two standard dvds.
Plus theres another documentary not on it,while any extras are good start
for fox

#18 of 33 OFFLINE   TonyD

TonyD

    Executive Producer

  • 16,143 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 01 1999
  • Real Name:Tony D.
  • LocationDisney World and Universal Florida

Posted June 11 2008 - 03:24 PM

just started watching this.
haven't seen the movie since the first dvd came out.


i noticed at least 2 odd jump cuts near the beginning.
one right in the beginning after the guy in the saloon asks the boys to stay.
as they are leaving the guy says, "how good are you kid" or something like that.

then kid shoots his elt and pistols off of his hip and shoots the gun into the corner.

there is an odd cut or 2 there right as he says "how good are you and
another as the kid is shooting the gun.
it looks like a missing frame or 2.

same thing happens after the knife fight.
what looks exactly like at least one missing frame.

anyone else notice this.

also i just switched to the mono track.
during the Raindrops song the audio seemed much too boomy
on the dts ma track.
facebook.com/whotony

#19 of 33 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

Robert Crawford

    Studio Mogul

  • 24,622 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 09 1998
  • Real Name:Robert
  • LocationMichigan

Posted June 11 2008 - 05:55 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyD
just started watching this.
haven't seen the movie since the first dvd came out.


i noticed at least 2 odd jump cuts near the beginning.
one right in the beginning after the guy in the saloon asks the boys to stay.
as they are leaving the guy says, "how good are you kid" or something like that.

then kid shoots his elt and pistols off of his hip and shoots the gun into the corner.

there is an odd cut or 2 there right as he says "how good are you and
another as the kid is shooting the gun.
it looks like a missing frame or 2.

same thing happens after the knife fight.
what looks exactly like at least one missing frame.

anyone else notice this.

also i just switched to the mono track.
during the Raindrops song the audio seemed much too boomy
on the dts ma track.
It's always been like that since I can remember.

Crawdaddy

 

Blu-ray Preorder Schedule

 


#20 of 33 OFFLINE   Cameron Yee

Cameron Yee

    Executive Producer

  • 10,485 posts
  • Join Date: May 09 2002
  • Real Name:Cameron Yee
  • LocationSince 2006

Posted December 18 2008 - 09:15 AM

Thanks again for the invaluable perspective RAH. I picked this up semi-blind (have seen the film, didn't check on technical reviews before purchase) and just read another site's "worst of 2008" that includes this release. So I was concerned about having bought a lemon and am glad you addressed it here. I'm looking forward to watching the film again.
One thing leads to another at cameronyee.com


Back to Blu-ray



Forum Nav Content I Follow