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HTF BLU-RAY REVIEW: Alien Anthology



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#1 of 139 OFFLINE   Matt Hough

Matt Hough

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Posted October 27 2010 - 09:29 AM

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Alien Anthology (Blu-ray)
Alien/Aliens/Alien 3/Alien Resurrection


Directed by Ridley Scott, James Cameron, David Fincher, Jean-Pierre Jeunet

Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
Year:
1979/1986/1992/1997
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1/1.85:1   1080p   AVC codec
Running Time: 116/137/115/109minutes
Rating: R
Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio5.1 English; DTS 5.1 Spanish; Dolby Digital 5.1 French, others
Subtitles: SDH, French, Spanish, others

Region:  A
MSRP:  $ 139.99


Release Date: October 26, 2010

Review Date: October 27, 2010



The Films


One of the most highly regarded of franchise series, the four Alien films certainly have provided lively discussion and debate for decades. Though the first two films are as widely celebrated as the last two films are hotly contested, there’s little argument that the movies are handsomely produced, divertingly directed, and acted to a fare-thee-well by their individual casts. The Alien Anthology is likely to be the last word on these four fascinating works as the six-disc set collects two versions of each film and more commentaries and bonus features than a person could comfortably watch in a month. They may be films that are better covered in the future, but as of now, the amount of information on the production of these classics and “near-misses” constitute the Blu-ray machine at its zenith. This is one impressive set.



Alien - 5/5


Seven workers on the Nostromo, a commercial towing vehicle in outer space, are awakened from hypersleep by what appears to be an SOS call from a planetoid. Upon investigation, they find an ancient battleship filled with curious eggs. When Kane (John Hurt) gets too close to them, a crab-like creature bursts from the egg and attaches itself to his face. Unable to kill it with its acid-like blood, the crew must wait to see what develops. What follows is a revelation which puts the entire group in danger for their lives.


They don’t make horror movies of the cat-and-mouse variety much better than this, and the film has only gained in respect in the decades since its release. It’s perfectly set up by director Ridley Scott and scripter Dan O'Bannon: care is taken to establish the spaceship setting with its antiquated equipment and barely functioning systems, and the first three-quarters of an hour gives us chunks of characterization from the sterling cast with the unease gradually building from the moment the crew sets foot in that alien world. Scott never makes a wrong step as he takes out the crew one at a time, sometimes showing us more than we’d want to see, sometimes letting our imaginations do the work while we hear only the screams of the victims. He places his “boo” moments smartly, but the tension grows and grows the longer the movie plays, the sign of a great director. The cast plays wonderfully together and, of course, this was the start of a long, successful screen career for Sigourney Weaver whose Ripley shows the first glimmers of the warrior she would become in future installments.



Aliens – 5/5


After floating in hypersleep for fifty-seven years, Ripley’s (Sigourney Weaver) shuttle craft is brought in and her horrifying story received by a skeptical and ungrateful company. It seems that a human colony has been living undisturbed on that very alien planetoid for years with no problems, but when communications stop from that outpost, the company fearing the worst sends in a marine unit to investigate. Ripley grudgingly goes along for two reasons: to regain her reputation and rank as a shuttle pilot and to end hopefully the disturbing nightmares about the creatures she experiences nightly. On the planet, only one survivor is found, the young child Rebecca “Newt” Jorden (Carrie Henn), and the alien population has expanded by dozens. Ripley also realizes once she arrives that once again there’s a mole in the operation, a person who works for the company and who will do anything to bring back to Earth a specimen of this life form.


Just as Ridley Scott did before him, director James Cameron takes the slow-build-to-a-gut wrenching-experience tact for his movie, one of few sequels that surpasses even its masterful parent movie. There is the usual quota of gung-ho twaddle from the marines (Bill Paxton is a standout alternately bragging and whining about his plight), and they make the usual mistake of thinking their big guns are all they need to insure victory. But the film revolves around a succession of beautifully set-up suspense sequences which will have a viewer on the edge of his seat even if he’s previously seen the film in theaters or in one of its previous video releases. The movie is rich in character, too. Not many science fiction-horror films earn their leading lady an Oscar nomination for Best Actress, but Weaver earns it with an alternately tender and tough portrayal of a survivor that has stood the test of time. Other standouts include Lance Henriksen as the android Bishop, Michael Biehn as the most level-headed of the marines, and Jenette Goldstein who’s the toughest of the grunts and proves it continually.



Alien 3 – 3/5


When her escape pod crash lands on Fury 161, a prison planet with an all-male population, Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) is the only survivor. Unknown to her, an alien egg was also on board and its face-hugger active during the crew’s hypersleep voyage. Once on the planet, the alien plants its spawn in a dog (or ox if watching the special edition) which sets an alien loose on this planet with the inmates of the prison first skeptical and then terrified by its fierce dedication to causing their deaths.


Resuming the cat and mouse tenor of the original film, director David Fincher has crafted a visually appealing but undoubtedly grim movie with muddled plotting and unsatisfying gaps in the Alien mythology which don’t ring true. As in the previous two films, it’s obvious the Weyland-Yitani Corporation will do anything to get its hands on one of these creatures at whatever cost to anyone else who comes into contact with it, so the same familiar ground is being trod but with much less artistry and skill. The kills are much too telegraphed this time around with real suspense seriously lacking. The inmates’ climactic attempts to trap the monster in a series of corridors takes up a fair amount of running time but is so sloppily directed than the viewer is never certain whether the plan is really working or not. Apart from Ripley, we have very little rooting interest for any of the other cast members, so their deaths don’t hit us nearly as hard as the ones in the two previous movies. Sigourney Weaver is still giving it her all and is by far the film’s best element. Some personal time with Dr. Clemens (Charles Dance) is a nice change of pace from previous films in the series, and there’s a touching moment when Ripley reanimates the remains of Bishop (Lance Henriksen) where there’s genuine emotion and mutual respect. Too bad the audience isn’t offered more of that respect in regard to the story that writers David Giler, Walter Hill, and Larry Ferguson have cobbled together.



Alien Resurrection – 3/5


Two hundred years after the end of Alien 3, Ripley’s (Sigourney Weaver) blood is used to clone her so that the alien inside her can be harvested. Since the alien is a queen, it’s especially valuable so that it can lay eggs which can then produce additional creatures. The army cargo ship which is housing these experiments allows a group of space mercenaries led by Elgyn (Michael Wincott) and Johner (Ron Perlman) to dock there with space egg cargo right at the moment when the aliens have figured out a way to escape from the cell in which they’re being kept. Once again, mass confusion and terror sweep the ship as the pirates along with Ripley take enormous risks to get back to their ship the Betty


Joss Whedon’s script contains a marvelous idea for the new Alien film, but the fairly standard plot complications aren’t enhanced by anything director Jean-Pierre Jeunet brings to the table. True to the series, there are revelations about the loyalties of the various members of the crew, but one expects that one person will foolishly do all he can to preserve the creatures thinking that’s going to buy him some kind of safety, and when it happens, it’s not much of a surprise (particularly since the person who does it is exactly who we think will do it). There aren’t any spectacular surprises anywhere past the opening half hour (unless an extended underwater sequence which recalls The Poseidon Adventure qualifies), and a climactic birth sequence and aftermath is more comical than chilling as the script wanders into Freudian waters that this sci-fi thriller just can’t sustain. There is one beautifully directed and acted moment for Sigourney Weaver as she wanders around a lab which contains the first seven attempts to clone her, and generally does all she can with a character in many ways different from the Ripley we’ve known in the previous three movies. Ron Perlman makes a believably gruff space pirate, and Michael Wincott as Elgyn also scores points for tough believability. Winona Ryder for most of the film seems terribly miscast though revelations late in the film make it clearer why she was tapped for the role.



Video Quality


Alien – 4.5/5


The film is framed at 2.35:1 and is presented in 1080p using the AVC codec. From the opening moments as the camera snakes around the corridors of the ship as it comes to life, sharpness is really impressive. Color quality and saturation levels are rich, and flesh tones are appealing. Black levels are the only variance. At their best, they’re astonishingly deep and blend right into the letterbox bars, but they aren’t consistently deep; in a few instances, they appear a shade or two less than deepest black. But it’s a quibble. The image is clean to a fault with no signs of age. The film has been divided into  32 chapters for the theatrical cut and 40 chapters for the extended edition.


Aliens – 5/5


The film is framed at its theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and is presented in 1080p using the AVC codec. Heavily grainy on previous disc releases, the grain structure is still present but never at the expense of sharpness, detail, or color resolution. All are exemplary with terrific black levels and shadow detail second to none. The film has been divided into 32 chapters for the theatrical cut and 44 chapters for the extended edition.


Alien 3 – 4/5



The film’s 2.35:1 theatrical aspect ratio is faithfully delivered in this 1080p transfer using the AVC codec. The film always looks good to very good, but the image never registers as crisply or with as much dimension as in the previous two films. Color values are nicely rendered with flesh tones running a bit red early on but settling down to more natural hues later. Blacks are solid and impressive. The film has been divided into 32 chapters for the theatrical cut and 44 chapters for the extended edition.


Alien Resurrection – 4/5


The 2.35:1 theatrical aspect ratio is replicated in a 1080p transfer using the AVC codec. Though it’s the most recent of the films, it boasts the weakest high definition image with blacks at best a couple of shades below optimum and some scenes offering color that looks bland and flavorless. The entire film is dark and the lackluster look, while replicating the theatrical tone of the film, isn’t as appealing as the other transfers. The film has been divided into 28 chapters for the theatrical cut and 32 chapters for the 2003 special edition.



Audio Quality


Alien – 5/5


The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 sound mix will likely surprise you with its depth, spread, and clarity. The LFE channel gets a wonderful workout with deep bass effects constantly at play, and the soundfield is alive with split sounds and directionalized dialogue coming from the various available channels. Jerry Goldsmith’s miraculous score is likewise filtered through the entire soundfield to amazing effect.


Aliens – 5/5


As in the parent film, the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 sound mix displays a wide range to its soundfield with explosive special effects and the James Horner score placed throughout the soundstage to very immersive effect. The subwoofer will get another heavy workout with the film, and while directionalized dialogue isn’t found in this mix as in the previous one, the speaking voices in the center channel are clear and precise.


Alien 3 – 4.5/5


The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 sound mix doesn’t quite have the energy or sophisticated sound placement of the previous two films in the series. The Elliot Goldenthal music score gets the most impressive spread through the soundstage. The LFE channel also gets some powerful blasts of deep bass from time to time. There is no problem with the recorded dialogue which comes through firmly in the center channel.


Alien Resurrection – 4/5


The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 sound mix accentuates John Frizzell’s disappointing score which is full of bombast but contains little emotional drive for the movie. It does fill all of the available channels continuously and offers deep bass for the subwoofer. Additionally, the soundfield is nicely filled with effects that do their jobs but in an unspectacular way that doesn’t seem quite as involving as one might expect from a thriller soundtrack.




Special Features

5/5


Disc One


Both the 1979 and 2003 cuts of the movie are presented. The 2003 version contains an introduction by Ridley Scott.


The 1979 version contains an audio commentary by Ridley Scott. The 2003 cut contains an edited commentary featuring Scott, writer Dan O’Bannon, producer Ronald Shusett, editor Terry Rawlings, and stars Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dead Stanton, and John Hurt. Both are must-listens for the information provided on the making of the film and for aspects of the production which the cast and crew found fun, disturbing, irritating, or laudatory.


Two isolated scores by Jerry Goldsmith are available for listening: the final theatrical score and the original score may each be chosen from the main menu.


There are seven deleted scenes which may be viewed individually or in a 6 ¾-minute group. They’re in 1080p.


The MU-TH-UR interactive mode is a template which fits over the film and allows the viewer to select which audio (which keeps track of the topics being discussed at any one time by the variety of speakers) and video vignettes available for moments in the movie he’d like to store in the database for later use. There is also a datastream of trivia which can be turned on to run throughout the film.



Disc Two


Both the 1986 and 1991 cuts of the movie are presented. The 1991 version contains an introduction by James Cameron.


The audio commentary is an edited assemblage of talent before and behind the camera: director James Cameron, producer Gale Anne Hurd, effects artists Stan Winston, Robert Skotak, Dennis Skotak, and Pat McClung, and co-stars Michael Biehn, Bill Paxton, Lance Henriksen, Jenette Goldstein, Carrie Henn, and Christopher Henn. As with all of these edited tracks, prime information is provided with very little dead time, so fans will savor this if they haven’t heard it already.


Two isolated scores by James Horner are available for listening: the final theatrical score and the original score may each be chosen from the main menu.


There are sixteen deleted scenes which run 20 minutes in 1080p.


The MU-TH-UR interactive mode is a template which fits over the film and allows the viewer to select which audio (which keeps track of the topics being discussed at any one time by the variety of speakers) and video vignettes available for moments in the movie he’d like to store in the database for later use. There is also a datastream of trivia which can be turned on to run throughout the film.



Disc Three


Both the 1992 and 2003 workprint special edition cuts of the movie are presented.


The audio commentary is again an edited track consisting of input from cinematographer Alex Thomson, film editor Terry Rawlings, effects men Alec Gillis, Tom Woodruff, Jr. and Richard Edlund, and actors Lance Henriksen and Paul McGann. There are more silent patches on this one, and the behind-the-scenes conflagrations between the director and studio are only hinted at from time to time. Most are proud of the film and their work in it.


The music score of Elliot Goldenthal is presented on an isolated music track which can be selected.


There are thirty-one deleted scenes which can be watched individually or in one 49 ½-minute group. They’re in 1080p.


The MU-TH-UR interactive mode is a template which fits over the film and allows the viewer to select which audio (which keeps track of the topics being discussed at any one time by the variety of speakers) and video vignettes available for moments in the movie he’d like to store in the database for later use. There is also a datastream of trivia which can be turned on to run throughout the film.



Disc Four


Both the 1997 theatrical version and the 2003 special edition of the movie are presented. The 2003 version contains an introduction by director Jean-Pierre Jeunet.


The audio commentary is another edited affair featuring director Jean-Pierre Jeunet, editor Hervé Schneid, effects persons Alec Gillis, Tom Woodruff, Jr., Pitof, artist Sylvain Despretz, and actors Ron Perlman, Dominique Pinon, and Leland Orser. Jeunet’s accent may make it necessary to replay some of his comments, but as with the other mixed commentaries, there is ebb and flow as various comments are offered.


John Frizzell’s isolated score is offered as a choice from the menu.


There are eleven deleted scenes which can be played separately or in one 12-minute grouping. They’re in 1080p.


The MU-TH-UR interactive mode is a template which fits over the film and allows the viewer to select which audio (which keeps track of the topics being discussed at any one time by the variety of speakers) and video vignettes available for moments in the movie he’d like to store in the database for later use. There is also a datastream of trivia which can be turned on to run throughout the film.



Disc Five


These documentaries for the four films, all ported over from the previous DVD release, are presented in 480i. The individual featurettes which make up each documentary can be played separately, but there is a “Play All” feature that allows the viewer not have to pick and choose from them.


The Beast Within: Making Alien


  • Star Beast: Developing the Story (18 ¼ minutes)
  • The Visualists: Direction and Design (16 ¾ minutes)
  • Truckers in Space: Casting (15 minutes)
  • Fear of the Unknown: Shepperton Studios, 1978 (24 minutes)
  • The Darkest Reaches: Nostromo and Alien Planet (17 ½ minutes)
  • The Eighth Passenger: Creature Design (31 ½ minutes)
  • Future Tense: Editing and Music (16 ½ minutes)
  • Outward Bound: Visual Effects (19 minutes)
  • A Nightmare Fulfilled: Reaction to the Film (19 ¼ minutes)
Enhancement Pods are sound bite vignettes lasting anywhere from 2-3 minutes each directly related to one specific aspect of the film. (These are among the featurettes the viewer can mark to watch when viewing the film in MU-TH-UR mode.) There are 27 vignettes for Alien which can be viewed separately or together in one 79 ¾ minute grouping.


Superior Firepower: Making Aliens


  • 57 Years Later: Continuing the Story (11 minutes)
  • Building Better Worlds: From Concept to Construction (13 ½ minutes)
  • Preparing for Battle: Casting and Characterization (17 minutes)
  • This Time It’s War: Pinewood Studios, 1985 (19 ¾ minutes)
  • The Risk Always Lives: Weapons and Action (15 ¼ minutes)
  • Bug Hunt: Creature Design (16 ½ minutes)
  • Beauty and the Bitch: Power Loader vs. Queen Alien (22 ½ minutes)
  • Two Orphans: Sigourney Weaver and Carrie Henn (13 ¾ minutes)
  • The Final Countdown: Music, Editing and Sound (15 ½ minutes)
  • The Power of Real Tech: Visual Effects (27 ¾ minutes)
  • Aliens Unleashed: Reaction to the Film (12 ½ minutes)
Enhancement Pods for Aliens number 25 vignettes. They can be viewed individually or in one 58 ½-minute bunch.


Wreckage and Rage: Making Alien 3


  • Development Hell: Concluding the Story (17 ¾ minutes)
  • Tales of the Wooden Planet: Vincent Ward’s Vision (13 ¼ minutes)
  • Stasis Interrupted: David Fincher’s Vision (14 ¼ minutes)
  • Xeno-Erotic: H.R. Giger’s Redesign (10 ¼ minutes)
  • The Color of Blood: Pinewood Studios, 1991 (23 ¾ minutes)
  • Adaptive Organism: Creature Design (21 minutes)
  • The Downward Spiral: Creative Differences (15 minutes)
  • Where the Sun Burns Cold: Fox Studios, L.A. 1992 (17 ½ minutes)
  • Optical Fury: Visual Effects (24 minutes)
  • Requiem for a Scream: Music, Editing and Sound (14 ¾ minutes)
  • Post-Mortem: Reaction to the Film (8 ½ minutes)
Enhancement Pods for Alien 3 number 29 featurettes. They may be viewed separately or in one 79-minute grouping.



One Step Beyond: Making Alien Resurrection


  • From the Ashes: Reviving the Story (10 ¼ minutes)
  • French Twist: Direction and Design (26 ¼ minutes)
  • Under the Skin: Casting and Characterization (12 ¾ minutes)
  • Death from Below: Fox Studios, Los Angeles, 1996 (31 ¾ minutes)
  • In the Zone: The Basketball Scene (6 ¾ minutes)
  • Unnatural Mutation: Creature Design (26 ¼ minutes)
  • Genetic Composition: Music (13 ¼ minutes)
  • Virtual Aliens: Computer Generated Imagery (10 minutes)
  • A Matter of Scale: Miniature Photography (22 ¾ minutes)
  • Critical Juncture: Reaction to the Film (14 ½ minutes)
Enhancement Pods for Alien Resurrection number number 26 vignettes. They may be viewed separatelyor in a 74-minute group.



Disc Six


The contents of this disc consist of a conglomeration of printed text (scripts, notes, treatments), exhaustive image galleries, and occasional footage consisting of tests, documentaries, publicity features, interviews, and other programming. All video material is presented in 480i.


Alien


Pre-Production


  • First Draft Screenplay by Dan O’Bannon
  • Ridleygrams: Original Thumbnails and Notes
  • Storyboard Archive (six archives)
  • The Art of Alien: Conceptual Art Portfolio
  • Sigourney Weaver Screen Tests (five tests, three with Ridley Scott commentary running a total of 4 ½ minutes)
  • Cast Portrait Gallery
Production


  • The Chestbuster: Multi-Angle Sequence with commentary (three different angles)
  • Video Graphics Gallery
  • Production Image Galleries
  • Continuity Polaroids
  • The Sets of Alien
  • H.R. Giger’s Workshop Gallery
Post-Production and Aftermath


  • Additional Deleted Scenes (seven scenes running a total of 16 ¼ minutes)
  • Image & Poster Galleries
  • Experience in Terror (1979 promotional short running 7 ¼ minutes)
  • Special Collector’s Edition LaserDisc Archive
  • The Alien Legacy (1999 feature with the creators of the franchise running 67 minutes)
  • American Cinematheque: Ridley Scott Q&A (15 ¾ minutes)
  • Trailers & TV Spots (four items running a total of 3 ½ minutes)
Aliens

Pre-Production


  • Original Treatment by James Cameron
  • Pre-Visualizations: Multi-Angle Videomatics with Cameron commentary
  • Storyboard Archive
  • The Art of Aliens: Image Galleries
  • Cast Portrait Gallery
Production


  • Production Image Galleries
  • Continuity Polaroids
  • Weapons and Vehicles
  • Stan Winston’s Workshop
  • Colonial Marine Helmet Cameras
  • Video Graphics Gallery (4 minutes of video graphics used in film)
  • Weyland-Yutani Inquest: Nostromo Dossiers (3 ½ minutes of video graphics)
Post-Production and Aftermath


  • Deleted Scene: Burke Cocooned (1 ½ minutes)
  • Deleted Scene Montage (4 ½ minutes)
  • Image Galleries
  • Special Collector’s Edition LaserDisc Archive
  • Main Title Exploration (3 minutes of various attempts at graphics logo)
  • Aliens: Ride at the Speed of Fright (1996 ride simulation introduction runs 4 minutes)
  • Trailers & TV Spots (five items running 5 ¼ minutes)

Alien 3


Pre-Production


  • Storyboard Archive
  • The Art of Arceon
  • The Art of Fiorina
Production


  • Furnace Construction: Time-Lapse Sequence (4 ½ minutes)
  • EEV Bioscan: Multi-Angle Vignette with commentary (five angles running 2 minutes)
  • Production Image Galleries
  • A.D.I.’s Workshop
Post-Production and Aftermath


  • Visual Effects Gallery
  • Special Shoot: Promotional Photo Archive
  • Alien 3 Advance Featurette (3 minutes)
  • The Making of Alien 3   (promotional featurette running 23 ½ minutes)
  • Trailers & TV Spots (five trailers running 5 ¼ minutes; seven TV spots running 2 ¾ minutes)

Alien Resurrection


Pre-Production


  • First Draft Screenplay by Joss Whedon
  • Test Footage: A.D.I. Creature Shop with commentary (10 minutes)
  • Test Footage: Costumes, Hair and Makeup (Weaver’s tests only running 4 ¾ minutes)
  • Pre-Visualizations: Multi-Angle Rehearsals (3 minutes)
  • Storyboard Archive
  • The Marc Caro Portfolio: Character Designs
  • The Art of Resurrection: Image Galleries
Production


  • Production Image Galleries
  • A.D.I.’s Workshop
Post-Production and Aftermath


  • Visual Effects Gallery
  • Special Shoot: Promotional Photo Archive
  • “HBO First Look: The Making of Alien Resurrection” (25 ¾ minutes narrated by Ron Perlman)
  • Alien Resurrection promotional featurette (4 minutes)
  • Trailers & TV Spots (two trailers running 3 ¾ minutes; four TV spots running 1 ¾ minutes)

Miscellaneous (called “Anthology” on the disc)


Alien Evolution: two versions of this British documentary detailing the Alien legacy. Narrated by Mark Kermode, the 2001 version of this TV special runs 49 minutes. The 2003 re-edit of the material with new graphics and a focus on the original film runs 64 ½ minutes.


The Alien Saga is a 109-minute feature on the history of the four productions narrated by John Hurt.


Patches and Logos Gallery


Aliens 3D Attraction Scripts and Gallery


Aliens in the Basement: The Bob Burns Collection is a fascinating look at collector Bob Burns who has many artifacts from the films in a personal collection. This featurette runs 17 minutes.


Parodies: brief excerpts from a Family Guy episode ( ½ minute) and John Hurt in Spaceballs  (2 minutes).


Dark Horse Cover Gallery


Patches and Logos Gallery


An invaluable content booklet is tucked into the back of the disc holder containing a listing of everything available on these discs.



In Conclusion

4.5/5 (not an average)


The Alien Anthology is an astonishing achievement. No matter what one feels about the accomplishments of the individual movies, the Blu-ray package presents the films to their optimum advantage, and the bonus features are exhaustive and comprehensive. Highest recommendation.




Matt Hough

Charlotte, NC



#2 of 139 OFFLINE   Adam Gregorich

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Posted October 27 2010 - 10:32 AM

Its amazing how much they put into this set.  Thanks for the detailed review.  I've only had the chance to see bits and pieces of this set.  I look forward to watching it all over the next few weeks.  Its a solo project as my wife has no interest...Posted Image



#3 of 139 OFFLINE   Neil Middlemiss

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Posted October 27 2010 - 11:57 AM

Outstanding!!!
"Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure Science" – Edwin Hubble
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#4 of 139 OFFLINE   Adam Gregorich

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Posted October 27 2010 - 12:14 PM



Originally Posted by Neil Middlemiss 

Outstanding!!!



Did the stork come yet Neil? Posted Image



#5 of 139 OFFLINE   WillG

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Posted October 27 2010 - 12:28 PM

Nice review. One thing you might want to edit is in your video review for Resurrection, you mention the "Panavision frame" Resurrection was shot Super 35


STOP HIM! He's supposed to die!

#6 of 139 OFFLINE   Matt Hough

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Posted October 27 2010 - 01:50 PM



Originally Posted by WillG 

Nice review. One thing you might want to edit is in your video review for Resurrection, you mention the "Panavision frame" Resurrection was shot Super 35


You're right. I'll make the change immediately. Thanks for catching the error.



#7 of 139 OFFLINE   Neil Middlemiss

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Posted October 27 2010 - 02:39 PM


Nope - I even came home for lunch to check my doorstep, and nothing Posted Image


But tomorrow brings promise Posted Image

Originally Posted by Adam Gregorich 





Did the stork come yet Neil? Posted Image




"Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure Science" – Edwin Hubble
My DVD Collection

#8 of 139 OFFLINE   Steve Christou

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Posted October 28 2010 - 04:20 AM

Epic review Matt, thanks for the running times on the films and extras. I'll have to bookmark this page.


I'm about to start on disc 5. An amazing amount of extras on this set and with the Alien Evolution and Alien Saga documentaries amongst the extras on disc 6... I mean wow. Posted Image


Dave hören... auf, wille stoppen sie Dave... stoppen sie Dave... Mein gehirn geht... Ich bin gefühl es... Ich bin gefühl es... Ich bin ängstlich Dave... Guter Nachmittag. Ich bin ein HAL 9000 computer. Ich wurde funktionsfähig am HAL-Betrieb in Urbana, Illinois auf January 12 1992.


Lord of the Hubs


#9 of 139 OFFLINE   Cees Alons

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Posted October 28 2010 - 04:36 AM

Thanks, Matt. Lot of effort went into that review (worthy of the amount going into this release, I suppose).


Steve, you probably received it just one or two days before I did, so my goodness, you're waaay ahead!



Cees



#10 of 139 OFFLINE   Steve Christou

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Posted October 28 2010 - 04:55 AM

Cees I haven't watched the films yet, I'll save them for the weekend. I thought I'll check out some of the extras. But I did have a peek at films 1 and 2 and they looked magnifico, I'm seeing colours I didn't know were there before. Check out the scene where they discover the alien "space jockey" in Alien it's like seeing it for the first time. Great job.


Dave hören... auf, wille stoppen sie Dave... stoppen sie Dave... Mein gehirn geht... Ich bin gefühl es... Ich bin gefühl es... Ich bin ängstlich Dave... Guter Nachmittag. Ich bin ein HAL 9000 computer. Ich wurde funktionsfähig am HAL-Betrieb in Urbana, Illinois auf January 12 1992.


Lord of the Hubs


#11 of 139 OFFLINE   Erin C

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Posted October 28 2010 - 05:08 AM

I read all the previous easter eggs from the DVD's have been carried over. Has anyone found any of these yet?



#12 of 139 OFFLINE   Cees Alons

Cees Alons

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Posted October 28 2010 - 05:52 AM


Originally Posted by Steve Christou 

Cees I haven't watched the films yet, I'll save them for the weekend. I thought I'll check out some of the extras. But I did have a peek at films 1 and 2 and they looked magnifico, I'm seeing colours I didn't know were there before. Check out the scene where they discover the alien "space jockey" in Alien it's like seeing it for the first time. Great job.



I see, Steve.


Mine came yesterday. I must admit I haven't even removed the wrapping yet, but the same package held Iron Man 2, THX 1138, Nanny McPhee (to replace the Bumper Edition now we also had the blu-ray NMP 2) and the problem-less package ( Posted ImagePosted Image ) of Back To The Future. All blu-rays.


Expensive period, this. I'm ordering more and more from Amazon/UK. Release dates are no longer way behind the US release dates, the prices are very competitive and since this month they also have free Super Saver Shipping to my country!  Posted Image

(And never Customs, of course)


It's easy to recognize the various e-mails and keep them apart: orders are dispatched in stead of shipped.




Matt, the only reason your review didn't make me jump up and order the set, was because I'd already ordered it. But I'm really happy to be able to read this excellent piece - and happy with the verdict, in a selfish way of course. Posted Image



Cees



#13 of 139 OFFLINE   Steve Christou

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Posted October 28 2010 - 06:55 AM

It has been a costly month Cees, and with more films coming up in the next couple of months. I've pushed back Back to the Future and Apocalypse Now to next year, sacrifices have to be made. Posted Image


But this Alien set was the biggie for me.

Originally Posted by Erin C 

I read all the previous easter eggs from the DVD's have been carried over. Has anyone found any of these yet?



Do they still put easter eggs on discs? It's been years since I last looked for any.


Dave hören... auf, wille stoppen sie Dave... stoppen sie Dave... Mein gehirn geht... Ich bin gefühl es... Ich bin gefühl es... Ich bin ängstlich Dave... Guter Nachmittag. Ich bin ein HAL 9000 computer. Ich wurde funktionsfähig am HAL-Betrieb in Urbana, Illinois auf January 12 1992.


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#14 of 139 OFFLINE   ManW_TheUncool

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Posted October 29 2010 - 01:25 AM

Hey, Cees.


Can you confirm for us whether the UK AA set is region free?  Some of us on this side of the pond would like to import it since the price diff is so great Posted Image -- a couple of HTF members here seem to have already ordered it, but not sure if anyone can confirm yet.  Thanks much.


And Matt, that's a very extensive, solid review on a very extensive set. Posted Image  Can hardly wait to get my own copy of it.


_Man_


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"Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things..." (St. Paul)

#15 of 139 ONLINE   dpippel

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Posted October 29 2010 - 04:20 AM

According to this post at Blu-ray.com the UK packaging indicates it's Region A/B/C:


http://forum.blu-ray...tml#post3712165


Careful man, there's a beverage here!


#16 of 139 OFFLINE   ManW_TheUncool

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Posted October 29 2010 - 04:59 AM

Kool!   Thanks for the confirmation, Doug.  Did they ship out yours yet?  I will probably order later today myself...


_Man_


Just another amateur learning to paint w/ "the light of the world".

"Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things..." (St. Paul)

#17 of 139 ONLINE   dpippel

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Posted October 29 2010 - 05:23 AM

You're welcome Man. Yep, mine was shipped the day after I placed my order but Amazon.co.uk has projected a *NOVEMBER 15th* expected delivery date. In the past my Blu-ray orders from the UK have only taken about 7 business days to arrive though, so I'm sure they're wrong. At least I *hope* they are! Posted Image


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#18 of 139 OFFLINE   Felix Martinez

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Posted October 29 2010 - 07:43 AM

Before I plunk down the $ for the set, anyone tried playing this with the "venerable" 3 year-old Panny BD-30 with latest 2.9 firmware?



#19 of 139 OFFLINE   Simon Massey

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Posted October 29 2010 - 08:43 AM

I have a US PS3 and can also confirm the UK version works - no issues yet with any extras either. I don't know what the packaging is like on the US version but the box I have is well designed and no issues with disc holders. The discs themselves seem to be carbon copies of the US versions as we even get the FBI warning at the start which doesn't normally appear on UK discs.


Alien and especially Aliens look absolutely fantastic. The Aliens transfer is especially amazing - noticing little details I hadnt before (like the harpoon gun still stuck at the bottom of the door of the Narcissus at the start of the film Posted Image ).

Wreckage and Rage was especially interesting Posted Image Glad to see the full version.

This is going to take some time to get through.


The benchmark against what all other future Blu-ray special editions will be judged. Can't imagine something like this for Star Wars - how about a warts and all doc on each of those six films ?? Posted Image .



#20 of 139 ONLINE   SamT

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Posted October 29 2010 - 12:07 PM

I just bought this set. I'm a little disappointed that in the review there is no talk about the different versions. I would like to hear your opinion on which version is the better one and what version to watch first. I'm currently in no mood to see the same movie twice, so I can watch only one version of each.


For example should I try Ridley Scott's new cut? I have never seen it and I'm kind of put off by the way they touched a classic movie. I think he himself said on the DVD that he was forced to do it and he was not happy with it.


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