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"TCM Spotlight Doris Day Collection" and "A Song Is Born"


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#1 of 27 OFFLINE   haroldS

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Posted April 14 2009 - 07:38 AM

Are there any reviews for either of last week's releases: Danny Kaye in "A Song Is Born" or the "TCM Spotlight Doris Day Collection?"

#2 of 27 OFFLINE   ahollis

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Posted April 14 2009 - 03:33 PM

This is not an official review but I have gone through the Doris Day Collection and found the transfers and sound to up to the great Warner standards. I have laserdiscs on all but Starlift and have now retired them to the back of the closet. All of the special features are good and transferred as expected. If you are a fan of the Joe McDoakes shorts then you will be happy to know three more are included in this set. Only one cartoon has not been released before which is Sleepy Time Possum I was especially delighted with Starlift, since I had never seen this film. Doris is only in the first 20 minutes, but this was a valiant attempt to bring back the all-star films that entertained in WWII during the Koran War. It is in Black and White, but color would really add to it. The story could have been inspired by Hollywood Canteen. Tea For Two was the only transfer that was not exactly on its mark. It seemed soft. For all the others out there that wonder if the blurred title card is there this time, well yes it is. April In Paris and It's A Great Feeling look great and Miss Day is gorgeous in them. Tunnel of Love also looks good in its Black & White presentation. I am very happy with this release and glad I own it. Now let's see some real reviewers here. By the way I also got A Song Is Born, but have not watched it yet. Looking forward to that this coming weekend.
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#3 of 27 OFFLINE   Ken_McAlinden

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Posted April 15 2009 - 02:25 AM

With any luck, I will have a review up this weekend. Check your discs, though. My review copy of "Starlift" had a visible scratch/defect, although it only affected the playback of one of the supplements. As a preview, "Tea for Two" and "April in Paris" both look a little tilted towards the brown/magenta end of things and have high contrast with limited shadow detail. "It's a Great Feeling" improves on the other two Technicolor titles, although it has mild registration issues throughout. I did not notice it on a 36" tube set, but the color fringing was noticeable on my projector. For some reason, "Tea for Two" has more audio distortion on the musical production numbers than the rest of the soundtrack. Audio-wise, "Starlift" has heavy noise reduction and no top end.
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#4 of 27 OFFLINE   John Morgan

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Posted April 15 2009 - 04:43 AM

I only skimmed these, but I agree with Ken. My favorite film of the bunch looks and sounds the best to me: IT'S A GREAT FEELING. TEA FOR TWO doesn't look all that good, but the trailer is terrific with new words to the title tune reflecting the cast and film. TEA OF TWO still has that awful blotch in the writing credit segment. Gosh, it looks so horrible and the color is different and it sticks out. Looks like a kid with a finger painting kit. It must be like that on the original negative. I think THE TUNNEL OF LOVE was originally 4 track stereo, but mono here. I guess the stereo track was lost, but for me, this is the weakest of the four films. The BREAKDOWNS OF 1949 are fun.

#5 of 27 OFFLINE   Joe Caps

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Posted April 15 2009 - 09:44 AM

Hiya, John !! No - Tunnel of Love was always mono. Breakdowns of 1949 - is that the one with all the outakes form John Loves Mary (Ronald Readan can't Zip up his pants) and the Fountainhead?

#6 of 27 OFFLINE   Eric Vedowski

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Posted April 16 2009 - 12:46 AM

From the New York Post:
"George Feltenstein can't explain exactly how it got there -- possibly rights issues -- but says the magenta blur was burned right into the original negative, apparently just before release. That was too late for this original poster, where the writers, including composer Vincent Youmans, are credited in tiny type at the bottom, nor this more legible "inspired by'' credit in a graphic from the original press book."
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#7 of 27 OFFLINE   John Morgan

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Posted April 16 2009 - 05:18 AM

Hiya Joe.... The Breakdowns of 1949 does have THE FOUTAINHEAD and others, but I don't remember the Reagan pants zip, although I have seen that somewhere. There is some nice Bette Davis from BEYOND THE FOREST and that comedy she did. I kind of wish Warners would put a little subtitle under the clip identifying the film. I checked IMDB and they claim TuNNEL OF LOVE was both Perspecta and 4 track stereo. Wasn't the use of stereo still mandatory for CinemaScope films at that point? Oh well, I defer to you, but the film is still lousy. I still think the TEA FOR TWO trailer is the best thing about that disc!

#8 of 27 OFFLINE   Joe Caps

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Posted April 16 2009 - 06:30 AM

Fox originally mandated stereo for everything and color, but dropped the stereo by 1955 - so that the first United Artists scope films, The Kentuckan, King and Four Queens, etc are mono. by 56, color was not even mandatory at Fox, witness Tenage Rebel and Love Me Tender. I don't have to get this set, but Doris fans are mainly excited for the release of Starlift, that hasn't been on tv for at least 30 years. John, does Tea For Two look better or worse than the old Laserdisc version. Odd, that Turner should leave out Julie, which makes the ONLY film from them not released on DVD. Too bad the stereo track can not be found for calamity Jane !!!

#9 of 27 OFFLINE   John Skoda

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Posted April 16 2009 - 06:41 AM

I think Turner also owns WHERE WERE YOU WHEN THE LIGHTS WENT OUT? TEA FOR TWO benefits from the additional sharpness DVD brings, but it looks like the same old print that was on laser to me.

#10 of 27 OFFLINE   John Morgan

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Posted April 16 2009 - 08:51 AM

Yes, I agree with John Skoda on TEA FOR TWO. In a perfect world every three strip should have the ultra resolution done, but I guess the companies would be bankrupt in short order.

#11 of 27 OFFLINE   JohnMor

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Posted April 16 2009 - 10:06 AM


Joe, I've heard through the grapevine that Julie is one of the titles in Warner's upcoming Noir set.

That leaves only Where Were You When The Lights Went Out? as the sole unreleased Warner-owned Day title. Chances are that will make it to the Archive program if it doesn't have a "legit" release planned.

I didn't even know there was a stereo track for Calamity Jane. What a pity it's lost. Posted Image

#12 of 27 OFFLINE   CineKarine

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Posted April 16 2009 - 10:41 AM


Fabulous news about Julie!!! Posted Image

Looking forward to my Doris Day set - getting it as a gift for my birthday in a few weeks Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image

Now, if Universal could just release Midnight Lace...
Sing your worries away, smile, be kind and accentuate the positive!
DVD wish list: The Accused (48), Margie (46), I'll Get By (50), The Constant Nymph (43), The Voice of the Turtle (47), The Barretts of Wimpole Street (34), Her Twelve Men (54), The Lost Moment (47), I Walk Alone (48), The Glass...

#13 of 27 OFFLINE   Livius

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Posted April 16 2009 - 11:53 AM

That's a bit of an odd choice for a noir set, and not an especially good film either. It will be interesting to see what other titles make it into that box.
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#14 of 27 OFFLINE   CineKarine

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Posted April 16 2009 - 12:58 PM


Not that great a film for sure, but I am prejudiced, I think every Doris Day film is worth having Posted Image

As long as the thread refers to "A Song Is Born" too, I am hoping MGM releases the rest of the Danny Kaye films they own.

And there's a thought, maybe Warner can release "Merry Andrew" through the Archives! Posted Image
Sing your worries away, smile, be kind and accentuate the positive!
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#15 of 27 OFFLINE   JohnMor

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Posted April 16 2009 - 01:31 PM


I think it's a downright bad film. But I still want to complete my Day collection, so I want it. But of course until the official announcement is made, anything could change.

Although, come to think of it, I would much rather watch Julie than either April in Paris or The Tunnel of Love.

#16 of 27 OFFLINE   borisfw

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Posted April 16 2009 - 02:17 PM

I didn't think Julie was that bad.

#17 of 27 OFFLINE   CineKarine

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Posted April 17 2009 - 10:12 AM

Savant has a review of Starlift here

I have to agree that it's not much of a film, but it does come alive during the numerous musical interludes. Posted Image The best numbers are indeed the Day and MacRae duet and Gene Nelson's dance with a young Janice Rule. For anyone interested in such things, that's Hal Derwin singing for Gene Nelson and Bonnie Lou Williams singing for Patrice Wymore.
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#18 of 27 OFFLINE   Joe Caps

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Posted April 17 2009 - 10:39 AM

Bonnie sang for Patirice also in Ill See You in My Dreams. Bonnie also sang for Virginia Mayo in West Point Story. Doris sang with Hal Derwin in several films - in My Dream is Yours wheere he dubbed for Lee Bowman, in Lucky me , he sang for Robert cummings, and in Lullaby of Broadway, Hal again dubbed for Gene Nelson.

#19 of 27 OFFLINE   CineKarine

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Posted April 17 2009 - 10:59 AM


Yes, indeed. I'm a great fan of both of these fine uncredited singers. That's probably why Mayo dances but does not sing in Starlift, it may have been a problem to hear Bonnie Lou Williams (who sang for Mayo in a total of 6films at WB) sing for both Wymore and Mayo! Posted Image

Actually, when Virginia Mayo and Patrice Wymore starred together again in She's Working Her Way Through College and in She's Back on Broadway - Miss Williams sang for Mayo while Miss Wymore sang quite well for herself!

As long as the thread refers to A Song Is Born too, that's jazz singer Jeri Sullivan handling the vocals for Miss Mayo in that one.
Sing your worries away, smile, be kind and accentuate the positive!
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#20 of 27 OFFLINE   Drew Salzan

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Posted April 18 2009 - 01:11 AM

I second the motion for MERRY ANDREW!




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