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Bell Book and Candle Blu-ray Review



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#1 of 77 OFFLINE   Richard Gallagher

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Posted April 15 2012 - 02:26 PM


Bell Book and Candle is a mildly disappointing romantic comedy in which the parts add up to more than the whole. By that I mean that there is much to like about this film, including an attractive cast, an amazing Siamese cat, and beautiful cinematography by James Wong Howe, but the romance is rather tepid and the comedy is only occasionally amusing. However, the film does have many fans, and they will be thrilled to learn that Twillght Time has delivered another outstanding Blu-ray transfer from the Sony vaults. As with all Twilight Time titles, it is limited to a run of 3,000 copies so those who are interested in getting it should act while it is still available.


 


http://www.amazon.co...ASIN=B007T9XRF0


 


 


http://www.amazon.co...ASIN=B007T9XRF0
 

Rich Gallagher

#2 of 77 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted April 15 2012 - 03:05 PM

It might be a disappointing comedy, but it was the source of one my best fantasies in which Kim Novak waits for me to come home from a hard day of work in her tight black outfit holding that damn cat.

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#3 of 77 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted April 15 2012 - 03:06 PM

Getting a little warm in here, say what?

#4 of 77 OFFLINE   Richard Gallagher

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Posted April 15 2012 - 03:20 PM




Quote:

Originally Posted by Robert Crawford /t/320047/bell-book-and-candle-blu-ray-review#post_3916830


It might be a disappointing comedy, but it was the source of one my best fantasies in which Kim Novak waits for me to come home from a hard day of work in her tight black outfit holding that damn cat.



It's hard to argue with that!


 

Rich Gallagher

#5 of 77 OFFLINE   darkrock17

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Posted April 15 2012 - 03:57 PM

Why is the featurette for her other movie on this release? where's the trailer and photo gallery that was on the DVD release?

#6 of 77 OFFLINE   dana martin

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Posted April 15 2012 - 05:36 PM

sometimes i wonder about the extras that are included in the TT releases or the lack of them, possibly it has to do wit what the "Parent" company (Sony or Fox) are willing to offer; otherwise this could have been a complete port over from the last dvd with the addition of the isolated score. One thing that we havent thought of, is if a special feature or featurette is made expressly for a release, the deal with the production company might be tied only to that release. 
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#7 of 77 OFFLINE   Richard Gallagher

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Posted April 15 2012 - 06:41 PM




Quote:

Originally Posted by darkrock17 /t/320047/bell-book-and-candle-blu-ray-review#post_3916836

Why is the featurette for her other movie on this release? where's the trailer and photo gallery that was on the DVD release?

 


The trailer for Bell Book and Candle is on the Blu-ray (and is in much better shape than it appears on the DVD). The others trailers which are on the 2000 DVD are Mr. Smith Goes to Washington and The Man From Laramie. Since Twilight Time isn't releasing those (at least, not yet) there is no reason for them to include those trailers.


 


 


 



 


 

Rich Gallagher

#8 of 77 OFFLINE   RKR1970

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Posted April 15 2012 - 07:01 PM

The DVD used an IP and the new restored BD used the OCN, so no grain work was performed.

#9 of 77 OFFLINE   rsmithjr

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Posted April 15 2012 - 08:03 PM

This film is hardly disappointing, it is a very unique and charming film. The cast all do a great job, but the real star is New York City, which can cast a spell on anyone. The endless variety of life in the city is highlighted throughout. It is also odd that no one has ever commented on the relationship between Vertigo and Bell Book and Candle, apart from the fact that the films were made based on a deal between the studios. In both films Kim Novak bewitches James Stewart, once for comedy and once for tragedy. The transfer is also great, and the sound is magnificent and gives George Duning's score its full due.

#10 of 77 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted April 15 2012 - 09:39 PM




Quote:

Originally Posted by rsmithjr /t/320047/bell-book-and-candle-blu-ray-review#post_3916894

This film is hardly disappointing, it is a very unique and charming film. The cast all do a great job, but the real star is New York City, which can cast a spell on anyone. The endless variety of life in the city is highlighted throughout.
It is also odd that no one has ever commented on the relationship between Vertigo and Bell Book and Candle, apart from the fact that the films were made based on a deal between the studios. In both films Kim Novak bewitches James Stewart, once for comedy and once for tragedy.
The transfer is also great, and the sound is magnificent and gives George Duning's score its full due.



Besides my Novak fixation, I always thought the film was a good film that was rather different and quite amusing. 


 

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#11 of 77 OFFLINE   Bob Cashill

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Posted April 16 2012 - 04:15 AM

And an amusing gay metaphor, too, which is right on the surface.

#12 of 77 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted April 16 2012 - 04:35 AM

As a kid I was positively enchanted with this movie -- without having any idea then that it was in color, or wider than 4x3 -- and it was my quintessential Jimmy Stewart film.  I could never get enough of it then, even on afternoon TV with a hundred commercial interruptions.  Years later, I never liked the look of the DVD.  This is a godsend.   I agree that "the parts add up to more than the whole".  I think it's the original stage material holding it back a little bit, being at heart "just" a romantic comedy.  I'd say they performed a miracle in adapting it, and while it's tempting to imagine something better, I'm grateful for everything they did.  Every scene is pure eye and ear candy.  Yum.  And what a year for prime Kim Novak releases.

#13 of 77 OFFLINE   rsmithjr

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Posted April 16 2012 - 06:12 AM

And an amusing gay metaphor, too, which is right on the surface.


Absolutely. But this seems to have been missed by the critics (who have also largely missed the film over the years).

A few years ago, it was shown at the LA Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, introduced by Armistead Maupin. I don't know what he said, but I can guess.

#14 of 77 OFFLINE   TheVid

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Posted April 16 2012 - 09:22 AM

This is a wonderful blu-ray presentation, very accurate and pleasing viewing. I'd like to note that the original soundtrack for BELL, BOOK AND CANDLE is in the original mono (DTS 1.0 for this blu-ray release), and is not remixed for 5.1 as indicated on the disc label. The isolated score is presented in (DTS) 2-track stereo, as was the original soundtrack album. Director Richard Quine had a real knack for this kind of whimsical comedy (he later directed Jack Lemmon in the wonderful HOW TO MURDER YOUR WIFE), but I hope Twilight Time can get a high-definition print of his Kim Novak, bourgeois suburban melodrama, STRANGERS WHEN WE MEET (which also features more great George Duning music). It's in the Columbia library, too.

#15 of 77 OFFLINE   lukejosephchung

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Posted April 16 2012 - 10:15 AM


Counting this release, Twilight Time has now released no less than THREE Columbia Kim Novak titles on BD..."Bell, Book & Candle", "Pal Joey" and "Picnic". All three have received stellar transfers courtesy of Sony's Grover Crisp and deserve high praise and support from vintage movie fanatics like us.Posted Image


#16 of 77 OFFLINE   benbess

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Posted April 16 2012 - 10:23 AM

And an amusing gay metaphor, too, which is right on the surface.


I believe you, but I've never seen the film, and so I don't know what you're referencing here. I would like to look out for what you're talking about when I watch my copy, and so would you (or someone else) be willing to clue-in the clueless? Thanks.:)

#17 of 77 OFFLINE   Ronald Epstein

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Posted April 16 2012 - 02:08 PM


Okay, where to begin....


 


Well, up until this afternoon I have never seen Bell, Book and Candle....


 


...but I have certainly heard of it...oh indeed I have!  You guys have


been making an incredible amount of noise on this forum about the film


over the years for Blu-ray release, so it was hard not to have known 


about it.


 


I suppose that I had to take a look for myself.


 


So, I only knew that James Steward and Kim Novak were in the


film.  However, as I watched the opening credits I was very happy


to see names like Jack Lemmon, Ernie Kovacs and.....of all people...


Hermione Gingold.  I just love Hermione Gingold.  


 


As for the film itself....


 


I suppose someone cast a spell on me.  I was pretty much hooked


within the first few minutes.  Thought the film was very charming,


extremely entertaining, and by its end, I could completely understand


why so many of you have been wanting a Blu-ray release.


 


Sony did a very nice job with the transfer.  There's a good amount


of film grain intact here, but that's always a good thing.  The print is


free from scratches and debris.


 


Rich Gallagher mentioned the film was shot on location in NYC.


Unfortunately, the location footage is generally just that.  Most of


the majority of the street scenes appear to have been shot on a


studio backlot. Nevertheless, it manages to feel very much like


a New York film.


 


Very surprised how much I liked this film.  Kim Novak is beautiful,


and I felt Stewart and her had really remarkable chemistry between


each other.


 


This is a film I will certainly watch again in a few years, so based


on that, I would recommend a purchase.


 

 

Ronald J Epstein
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#18 of 77 OFFLINE   AnthonyClarke

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Posted April 16 2012 - 02:57 PM

I too love Bell Book and Candle and though I'm usually pretty savvy, I also would appreciate a bit of elucidation on the gay subtext, which I missed completely. I guess Jack Lemon's character is totally fey, and he, like Kim, might fancy Jimmy Stewart, but that's the only thing I can think of ..... cheers

#19 of 77 OFFLINE   haineshisway

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Posted April 16 2012 - 03:01 PM

Okay, where to begin....

Well, up until this afternoon I have never seen Bell, Book and Candle....

...but I have certainly heard of it...oh indeed I have!  You guys have
been making an incredible amount of noise on this forum about the film
over the years for Blu-ray release, so it was hard not to have known 
about it.

I suppose that I had to take a look for myself.

So, I only knew that James Steward and Kim Novak were in the
film.  However, as I watched the opening credits I was very happy
to see names like Jack Lemmon, Ernie Kovacs and.....of all people...
Hermione Gingold.  I just love Hermione Gingold.  

As for the film itself....

I suppose someone cast a spell on me.  I was pretty much hooked
within the first few minutes.  Thought the film was very charming,
extremely entertaining, and by its end, I could completely understand
why so many of you have been wanting a Blu-ray release.

Sony did a very nice job with the transfer.  There's a good amount
of film grain intact here, but that's always a good thing.  The print is
free from scratches and debris.

Rich Gallagher mentioned the film was shot on location in NYC.
Unfortunately, the location footage is generally just that.  Most of
the majority of the street scenes appear to have been shot on a
studio backlot. Nevertheless, it manages to feel very much like
a New York film.

Very surprised how much I liked this film.  Kim Novak is beautiful,
and I felt Stewart and her had really remarkable chemistry between
each other.

This is a film I will certainly watch again in a few years, so based
on that, I would recommend a purchase.


It's a charmer. And the photography by James Wong Howe is stunning. And I agree about the backlot - you really get a feel for the NY vibe - Quine was great with that. It wouldn't have looked as good shot on real locations. I think there's probably a little more grain than there should be - probably due to the elements - but it still manages to look lovely. There just should never be crawling grain like that on faces - it's a minor quibble though, because the color is lovely and it's sharp.

#20 of 77 OFFLINE   TonyD

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Posted April 16 2012 - 03:17 PM

Didn't Bewitched come from this or was that something else?
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