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Best movie studio documentary recommendations


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#1 of 16 OFFLINE   MattPeriolat

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Posted June 28 2012 - 06:04 PM

Having recently rewatched MGM When the Lion Roard, it has gotten me wondering what else is out there on movie and Hollywood history that is at least equal to or exceeds it. I know of two docs currently on DVD, the Warned doc You Must Remember This and the TCM overview doc Movie Stars and Moguls. Having not seen either and unaware of what else may be out there, I seek recommendations and reviews please to give me some ideas on what to watch or check out next. Thanks in advance.
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#2 of 16 OFFLINE   Dave B Ferris

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Posted June 29 2012 - 03:22 AM

The Adventures of Robin Hood, 2-disc DVD and Blu, both have an hour-long documentary, which also premiered on TCM, called Glorious Technicolor.

#3 of 16 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted June 29 2012 - 03:28 AM

A Legacy of Filmmakers: The Early Years of American Zoetrope is included on the THX 1138 DVD and BLU.



#4 of 16 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted June 29 2012 - 03:31 AM

Cinerama Adventure, included on the DVD and BLU collector's editions of How The West Was Won.



#5 of 16 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted June 29 2012 - 03:38 AM

Cleopatra: The Film That Changed Hollywood, on the Five Star Collection DVD of Cleopatra.  (re FOX)



#6 of 16 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted June 29 2012 - 03:59 AM

And while I'm on a roll here...

Cameraman:  The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff, on BLU.  Absolutely essential.


http://www.hometheat...diff-in-blu-ray



#7 of 16 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted June 29 2012 - 04:15 AM

One more, then I'm letting someone else take a turn:


Behind the Planet of the Apes, 2-hour doc hosted by Roddy McDowall.  I know it's on the large Blu-ray set, don't know about others.


Trying not to get too single-movie-specific here -- but both this and the Cleopatra one are as much about 20th Century Fox as about the films themselves.  I find both of them utterly fascinating, and worthy of repeat viewings.



#8 of 16 OFFLINE   Peter M Fitzgerald

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Posted June 29 2012 - 04:54 AM

For purchase, these are expensive and scarce, but Netflix offers them for DVD rental: VISIONS OF LIGHT: THE ART OF CINEMATOGRAPHY (1992) FLESH AND BLOOD: THE HAMMER HERITAGE OF HORROR (1997) These are easier to find for purchase: FOREVER EALING (2002) --bonus on both Criterion's KIND HEARTS AND CORONETS standard DVD and Lionsgate's THE LADYKILLERS (1955) Bluray ADDED ATTRACTIONS: THE HOLLYWOOD SHORTS STORY (2006) --bonus on THE LAUREL & HARDY COLLECTION: THE DEVIL'S BROTHER/BONNIE SCOTLAND THE CUTTING EDGE: THE MAGIC OF MOVIE EDITING (2004) --a bonus on the BULLITT 2-Disc SE DVD I'M KING KONG: THE EXPLOITS OF MERIAN C. COOPER (2005) --on the KING KONG ('33) Bluray and 2-disc SE DVD

My Current Damage at DVD Aficionado

Wanted in R1: UNEARTHLY STRANGER ('63) / IF I HAD A MILLION ('32) / THE FACE BEHIND THE MASK ('41) / IT CONQUERED THE WORLD ('56) / TERROR ABOARD ('33) / DANGER ROUTE ('68) / THE BLISS OF MRS. BLOSSOM ('68) / GUNN ('67) / ZOO IN BUDAPEST ('33) / THE SEA WOLF ('41) / DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS ('63, restored) / ALAKAZAM THE GREAT ('60) / DARKER THAN AMBER ('70) / THEY WON'T BELIEVE ME ('47) / CROSSWINDS ('51) / JIVARO ('54)

Wanted TV-on-DVD: T.H.E. CAT (1966-67) / SUSPICION (1957-58) / WAY OUT (1961) / ALFRED HITCHCOCK HOUR (1962-65) / PANIC! (1957-58) / CORONET BLUE (1965) / DRAGNET ('50s) / NEW ADVENTURES OF HUCK FINN (1968) / BUS STOP (1961-62) / THE WESTERNER (1960) / THE IMMORTAL (1970) / BLUE LIGHT (1966) / TERRIERS (2010) / THE MAN WHO NEVER WAS (1966)


#9 of 16 OFFLINE   mdnitoil

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Posted June 29 2012 - 05:15 AM

20th Century Fox: The Blockbuster Years and 20th Century Fox: The First 50 Years, both out of print from Image, serve a similar purpose to Lion Roars, except the focus is obviously Fox. I would also recommend Goldwyn - The Man and His Movies and Walt: The Man Behind the Myth for golden age independent production stuff. After that, there's a mountain of individual actor/crew stuff available as well.

#10 of 16 OFFLINE   MattPeriolat

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Posted June 29 2012 - 09:56 AM

Forgot to mention that I had Walt already. Love that one. Wish Age of Believing from TCM was out on DVD or blu as well as that was a nice follow-up.


Beyond that... wowzers, this is a fantastic list so far. I'm frantically scribbling notes, checking prices and evaluating what and when. :) Please, by all means, keep the recommendations flowing. If you need a tighter focus, overviews of Hollywood from the start of the silent era until maybe the 60s or 70s intrigue me greatly.


Before anyone says it, I heard about Hollywood this morning. You bet your dollar I want it, but it seems impossible to find on decent media anymore because of the rights issues. Wish they'd fix that as I could really sink my teeth into that one.


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#11 of 16 OFFLINE   Matt Hough

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Posted June 30 2012 - 12:24 AM

Waking Sleeping Beauty covers the Disney studio from its problematic early 1980s situation through the release of The Lion King, but it's not all hearts and flowers as the sometimes ugly story unfolds. A definite must if you don't already have it!



#12 of 16 OFFLINE   Eric Vedowski

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Posted June 30 2012 - 01:39 AM

The RKO Story (1987) 6 episodes. I wish this was available, it was excellent. The Lady with the Torch (1999), a history of Columbia Pictures hosted by Glenn Close. Don't think this has turned up on any DVD but they ought to dig it out and put it on something as an extra. Not so hot as I recall.

#13 of 16 OFFLINE   DavidBC

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Posted June 30 2012 - 06:47 AM

Before anyone says it, I heard about Hollywood this morning. You bet your dollar I want it, but it seems impossible to find on decent media anymore because of the rights issues. Wish they'd fix that as I could really sink my teeth into that one.

Hollywood is absolutely sensational. Found the VHS brick at a yard sale last summer and have watched it through multiple times. Definitely worth seeking out.
I don't care for modern films. All crashing cars and close-ups of people's feet.
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#14 of 16 OFFLINE   MattPeriolat

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Posted June 30 2012 - 03:08 PM

Originally Posted by DavidBC 


Hollywood is absolutely sensational. Found the VHS brick at a yard sale last summer and have watched it through multiple times. Definitely worth seeking out.


Found episodes on an internet streaming site YOU can find, quite TUBElar actually.


Seriously, yes, this needs a DVD issue as it is excellent in what it covers and does it very well.


First I've heard about RKO and Columbia having history packages, so will have to run those down. Seems like only Paramount does not have one, unless I've missed something.


Please continue to advise, the research is quite rewarding and perfect for indoor work in hot weather. Thanks very much.


So much TV... So little money! Please visit my blog at: http://tvhistoryondvd.blogspot.com/

#15 of 16 OFFLINE   Peter M Fitzgerald

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Posted June 30 2012 - 03:23 PM

Not as much about the studios per se, as it is about particular films and filmmakers, but there's also the DVD edition of PERSONAL JOURNEY WITH MARTIN SCORSESE THROUGH AMERICAN MOVIES (1995).

My Current Damage at DVD Aficionado

Wanted in R1: UNEARTHLY STRANGER ('63) / IF I HAD A MILLION ('32) / THE FACE BEHIND THE MASK ('41) / IT CONQUERED THE WORLD ('56) / TERROR ABOARD ('33) / DANGER ROUTE ('68) / THE BLISS OF MRS. BLOSSOM ('68) / GUNN ('67) / ZOO IN BUDAPEST ('33) / THE SEA WOLF ('41) / DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS ('63, restored) / ALAKAZAM THE GREAT ('60) / DARKER THAN AMBER ('70) / THEY WON'T BELIEVE ME ('47) / CROSSWINDS ('51) / JIVARO ('54)

Wanted TV-on-DVD: T.H.E. CAT (1966-67) / SUSPICION (1957-58) / WAY OUT (1961) / ALFRED HITCHCOCK HOUR (1962-65) / PANIC! (1957-58) / CORONET BLUE (1965) / DRAGNET ('50s) / NEW ADVENTURES OF HUCK FINN (1968) / BUS STOP (1961-62) / THE WESTERNER (1960) / THE IMMORTAL (1970) / BLUE LIGHT (1966) / TERRIERS (2010) / THE MAN WHO NEVER WAS (1966)


#16 of 16 OFFLINE   Escapay

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Posted July 03 2012 - 06:31 AM

The Lady with the Torch (1999), a history of Columbia Pictures hosted by Glenn Close. Don't think this has turned up on any DVD but they ought to dig it out and put it on something as an extra. Not so hot as I recall.

An excerpt about From Here to Eternity (2 minutes, 23 seconds) was put on its DVD, although it's labeled "The Making of From Here to Eternity," without noting it's an excerpt. Needless to say, when I first watched it and didn't know where it came from, I thought it was just about the worst "making-of" that I'd ever seen. Even now, knowing where it's actually from, it seems like a very weak effort on Columbia's part for one of their upper-tier titles. Gilda and The Loves of Carmen both feature two excerpts (joined together) focusing on Rita Hayworth, simply called "Rita Hayworth: The Columbia Lady" (8 minutes, 50 seconds). It's a bit more substantial than the From Here to Eternity piece, as it not only includes clips from her early films, but also had audio interviews with Fred Astaire (about working with her in You'll Never Get Rich) and Orson Welles (about The Lady from Shanghai). I always loved how Close says that Gilda is "almost impossible to follow" when talking about that film. I wish I could have seen the whole documentary, even though the excerpts that are on DVD aren't exactly the most exciting things in the world.