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A few words about...™ Mrs. Miniver -- in Blu-ray

A Few Words About

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#41 of 43 OFFLINE   bujaki



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Posted May 06 2014 - 05:37 PM

Wyler is in dire need of re-evaluation. Maybe his films have not been available in good prints for many years, or maybe not at all. But he was more than just a theatrical journeyman director. People always talk about The Best Years of Our Lives (a masterpiece); Wuthering Heights; Ben-Hur; The Big Country; and maybe Mrs. Miniver. But what about Dodsworth (another masterpiece); Jezebel; The Letter; The Little Foxes, etc. etc. Catch these films in 35mm prints, or (dare we hope?) BDs, and you might see things differently. For the record, I've seen all of Wyler's films except 4 from 1929-30, and one from 1935.

Wyler knew how to get the best from his actors, but he also knew about camera placement, framing and angles; deep focus; editing, etc. One doesn't have to be showy to demonstrate one's craft.

BTW, all the directors that have been mentioned by others in this thread are great directors as well. All of them made turkeys during their careers. That doesn't lessen their overall artistic achievements.

#42 of 43 OFFLINE   AnthonyClarke



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Posted May 06 2014 - 06:13 PM

He also wanted to create more of a 'war story' during the film's third act, with tanks rumbling through the streets of Salzburg.  The mind boggles. I

I would have loved to have seen that!

And maybe it would have been even more realistic if they had dropped all the songs!

However and besides all that, Wyler's 'The Big Country' is my personal pick as the greatest Western ever made, just a notch above "High Noon'. But that's very subjective of course.

I just wish a proper Blu ray of The Big Country could be issued, without the horizontal stretching which makes the present Blu ray virtually unviewable for me, and which is such an insult to the director and cinematographer....

#43 of 43 OFFLINE   bujaki



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Posted May 06 2014 - 06:26 PM

To think that The Big Country was Wyler's third and final Western! His first one, Hell's Heroes, a version of The Three Godfathers, was shot in both sound and silent versions. It's fascinating to watch and compare both, since the grammar of film language is so different. Both versions are well done: gritty, realistic, and less sentimental than Ford's version. There's the in-between version directed, at least partially, by Boleslawsky, also worth catching.

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