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Blu Rays With The Robert A. Harris Seal of Approval

Robert Harris

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#1 of 4 Guest__*

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Posted September 04 2009 - 04:13 PM


1. I really enjoyed your article on The Digital Bits on DNR in Patton. In that article, you mentioned half a dozen Blu Rays that you felt had been transferred without reducing grain or detail (and also, I suppose, that look beautiful to the informed cinephile):

Bullitt
The Sting
Reds
Sand Pebbles
Professionals
Dracula (naturally softer)
Munchausen (naturally softer)

I was wondering if you could update this list, since your article was quite old. Perhaps there are some other titles that pass your litmus test. I'm no film student or restoration student, just a film-loving punter with standards looking for purchase recommendations from the guru himself (sorry about the suck up).

2. You also listed your "best Blus of 2008" and previous years, among which were:

Reds
Goodfellas
Unforgiven
Lethal Weapon
Rocky
Since the format has grown in the past three years, have any of these transfers started to bother you? I'm thinking about Reds and Rocky in particular, I'm looking for advice about whether I should be waiting for those to be re-released, or whether they are quite good by 2009 standards as they are?

3. I also wondered if this list culled from the research on the AVS Forum "Artistic Intent Thread" of Blus verified by their community also have your seal of approval too:
Black Narcissus, Blade Runner, Bullitt, Bonnie & Clyde, Butch Cassidy, Close Encounters, Dog Day Afternoon, Die Hard, Dirty Harry, Ghandi, Ghostbusters, Road Warrior, Night of the Living Dead, Planet of the Apes, Poltergeist, Predator, Raging Bull, Romancing the Stone (A), South Pacific, Bird with the Crystal Plumage, Day the Earth Stood Still, Godfather I and II, Ipcress File, Man Who Fell To Earth, Omega Man, Professionals, Sand Pebbles, Seventh Seal, Terminator, Third Man, 400 Blows, Wages of Fear






#2 of 4 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted September 07 2009 - 01:05 AM

Ben,

I've given up the concept of creating a "best" list as in most cases when I do, it breeds controversy.  There are still no standards among reviewers.  There are still people reviewing on 40" LCDs, which tends not to tell a full story.  

Unfortunately in some cases even my silence comes at a price.  As an example, I've not yet seen the new BD Braveheart, which I understand looks glorious, or the new Gladiator, which it appears does not.  I need to get copies and comment, as when I don't, some assume the negative.

As to overall quality, I generally make note of exceptional releases, which properly replicate the theatrical experience, in "a few words."

As to the AVS list, some of those that you've listed represent the intent of the filmmakers, while others do not.  To get into specifics could start individual tirades.

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


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Posted September 07 2009 - 12:25 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Harris 
...Unfortunately in some cases even my silence comes at a price.... To get into specifics could start individual tirades.
RAH
I understand your reticence, which clearly comes from bad experience. Maybe i'll just have to take what I can get from your "A Few Words..." articles. Its a shame, though, since there seems to be a lot of interest, from the number of views this thread got before you even made a response.



#4 of 4 OFFLINE   FoxyMulder

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Posted September 14 2009 - 05:22 AM

As the starter of that thread which is now called Film Reference and Analysis i generally just update the lists and oversee things to ensure that arguments and discussions don't get out of hand. The intent was to try and showcase films which aren't just eye candy but are faithful to the source.  That's not always possible and indeed today The Terminator was removed from the reference list and placed on the medium issues list. As Mr Harris himself says it's hard to do these type of lists and you can never be 100% accurate as everyone has different monitors/screens/projectors and calibration could be different for each and of course most people do not have access to the original film source. In this instance it's just a best guess scenario and i ask people participating to try and read up on the camera's, lenses, film stock used and on the cinematographer or director who helmed the production.  Sometimes in finding out this sort of information you can make an educated guess on how the actual film should look.  I believe some of the titles on the list should not be there but it's a nomination process and thus it's open to getting things wrong sometimes. I'm looking forward to Lawrence Of Arabia when it finally hits Blu Ray and i hope they take their time and really do the film justice.  I am also hoping for a new restoration of Spartacus and awaiting Ben Hur and i wish Mr Harris good luck with The Alamo restoration if it has received the go ahead.   ( Incidentally i have now quit AVS - For reasons i have stated elsewhere but overzealous moderation is the main niggle )   I just do the lists myself now at my own site, that way having personally watched them i can give better input, and of course get it wrong sometimes but hopefully point the way to some decent transfers.

     :Fun Movie Quotes:

"A good body with a dull brain is as cheap as life itself"   

"Maybe it's a sheep dog... let's keep going" 

"Please doctor, I've got to ask this. It sounds like, well, just as though you're describing some form of super carrot"

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