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A few words about...™ The Quiet Man -- in Blu-ray

A Few Words About

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#1 of 102 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted January 22 2013 - 12:28 PM

John Ford's 1952 The Quiet Man is consummate Ford / Wayne.


Photographed in three-strip Technicolor on location in Ireland, with interiors at Republic Studios in Hollywood, it was Mr. Ford's fourth use of the Technicolor medium since 1939's Drums Along the Mohawk. When he chose to use color, he used it.


Every past video incarnation of this film has unfortunately been worse than abysmal, but finally we get something decent.


Not perfect, by any means, but decent.


Color seems to be in line with where it should be, but fit and registration are occasionally off, and in today's digital world, they should not be. Even if the original materials are acetate as opposed to nitrate, there should be no problems of compositing the image.


The 1952 award season was kind to the film, with Mr. Ford taking the Academy Award for Best Director, and Winton Hoch and Archie Stout sharing Best Color Cinematography.


Mr. Hoch was known for his three-strip Technicolor work, photographed three of Mr. Ford's Tech productions, Three Godfathers, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon and The Quiet Man, and went on to shoot The Searches in VistaVision.


The Quiet Man is a great film. Considered, and rightfully so, to be a classic. I'm pleased that Olive has put in the work to create a Blu-ray of more than acceptable quality.

Final point. I'd love to see Olive get rid of those nasty cardboard sleeves that they use, as they serve no purpose whatsoever. They don't hold the disc case, which falls out. All that they accomplish to to add to ecological problems.

I've taken another look at TQM and have come away less pleased. The film, which should have a lush, velvety image, comes off as brittle and strident-looking.

What I'm seeing is an unfinished image, which appears unprocessed for any final look or texture, and more like a raw scan that has gone through a very basic composite for registration, without receiving any final steps.

My initial thoughts were buoyed by the belief that
Olive had actually made an attempt, and I was thrilled to give them credit for that.

The final image lacks both texture, as well as any real cohesiveness.

Image - 3


Audio - 4


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


#2 of 102 OFFLINE   ahollis

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Posted January 22 2013 - 12:46 PM

Pre-ordered and on the way. Guess this is as good as we will ever get. But it sure sounds as if it is a feast for eyes compared to what we had. This will be good for an evening in front of the fire with a glass of Irish Whiskey on these cold winter nights. Of course Maureen O'Hara can heat up any night.
"Get a director and a writer and leave them alone. That`s how the best pictures get made" - William "Wild Bill" Wellman


#3 of 102 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted January 22 2013 - 12:51 PM

Originally Posted by ahollis 

Pre-ordered and on the way. Guess this is as good as we will ever get. But it sure sounds as if it is a feast for eyes compared to what we had. This will be good for an evening in front of the fire with a glass of Irish Whiskey on these cold winter nights. Of course Maureen O'Hara can heat up any night.

The magnificent Ms O'Hara, will be 93 in August.  We can only hope that she's well, and enjoying what will hopefully be her middle years.


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


#4 of 102 OFFLINE   JoHud

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Posted January 22 2013 - 01:16 PM

The cardboard sleeves aren't very often issued by Olive lately. This seems to be the first release that had one since their September releases. While not without issues, good to hear positive feedback on this disc.

#5 of 102 OFFLINE   Bob_S.

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Posted January 22 2013 - 03:26 PM

Looking forward to actually seeing blades of grass instead of green blobs.

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Posted January 22 2013 - 03:53 PM

Have never seen this, so I'm excited about buying this blu-ray edition.



#7 of 102 OFFLINE   haineshisway

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Posted January 22 2013 - 04:16 PM

From what I've read on various boards, I was expecting the second coming from this transfer. However, once you understand the game, that all those people making with the pronouncements haven't actually seen the transfer in motion but are basing their comments on a handful of screen captures, one learns to stop taking that nonsense seriously. Because it is very simple to find one FRAME of a film that looks excellent - it's simple to find ten FRAMES of a film that look excellent (unless one is deliberately trying to find frames that show problems - which happens a lot). They are just what they are: FRAMES, and can never ever be representative of watching a MOTION picture. So, I must completely agree with Mr. Harris on this, because it is not the second coming and it could have been lots better. It is, of course, a MIRACLE compared to the abominations that have come before it on home video - those were simply not even watchable. For me, the contrast is too milky, and, as Mr. Harris states, there are obvious registration problems. But even with those caveats, one is so very grateful to have a Blu-ray that at least approximates the beauty that is The Quiet Man. Buy without fear, but know had a little more TLC been given, this could have been one for the Blu-ray ages.

#8 of 102 OFFLINE   Persianimmortal

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Posted January 22 2013 - 05:04 PM

I'm still keen to get this release, if only, as others have posted, because previous home video versions were so terrible. It's a shame it hasn't been perfected this time around, but with slightly lowered expectations as per Mr Harris' report, I've ordered it.

Final point.  I'd love to see Olive get rid of those nasty cardboard sleeves that they use, as they serve no purpose whatsoever.  They don't hold the disc case, which falls out.  All that they accomplish to to add to ecological problems.

These slipcovers are indeed a ridiculous, pointless and wasteful gimmick. There seems to be a growing cult devoted to collecting this garbage, particularly on a certain other blu-ray forum. I still find it ironic that people will quickly dismiss 3D as a "gimmick", yet in the same breath consider a cardboard cover as a "valuable collectible".

#9 of 102 OFFLINE   haineshisway

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Posted January 22 2013 - 05:11 PM

I'm still keen to get this release, if only, as others have posted, because previous home video versions were so terrible. It's a shame it hasn't been perfected this time around, but with slightly lowered expectations as per Mr Harris' report, I've ordered it. These slipcovers are indeed a ridiculous, pointless and wasteful gimmick. There seems to be a growing cult devoted to collecting this garbage, particularly on a certain other blu-ray forum. I still find it ironic that people will quickly dismiss 3D as a "gimmick", yet in the same breath consider a cardboard cover as a "valuable collectible".

Yes, there are whole threads with page after nauseating page about the slipcovers. They are a complete waste of a studio's time and money to do them, frankly - that money could be better spent elsewhere.

#10 of 102 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted January 23 2013 - 12:50 AM

Originally Posted by haineshisway 

From what I've read on various boards, I was expecting the second coming from this transfer. However, once you understand the game, that all those people making with the pronouncements haven't actually seen the transfer in motion but are basing their comments on a handful of screen captures, one learns to stop taking that nonsense seriously. Because it is very simple to find one FRAME of a film that looks excellent - it's simple to find ten FRAMES of a film that look excellent (unless one is deliberately trying to find frames that show problems - which happens a lot). They are just what they are: FRAMES, and can never ever be representative of watching a MOTION picture.

So, I must completely agree with Mr. Harris on this, because it is not the second coming and it could have been lots better. It is, of course, a MIRACLE compared to the abominations that have come before it on home video - those were simply not even watchable. For me, the contrast is too milky, and, as Mr. Harris states, there are obvious registration problems. But even with those caveats, one is so very grateful to have a Blu-ray that at least approximates the beauty that is The Quiet Man. Buy without fear, but know had a little more TLC been given, this could have been one for the Blu-ray ages.


I was doing my best to explain what this film looks like, and came away empty.


Now I realize what was disturbing me in a general sense.


Unlike dye transfer prints of the era, which had a lush, velvety look, Olive's 4k work leaves the image devoid of that beauty.  In its place what we get is something that appears gritty, hard and unfortunately, unpleasant.  Then, allow your eye to move away from the central image, and you're hit by mis-registration.  I can't image why Olive made the decision to move all the scanning and post gear into their own facility, and have a go at it.  Possibly hardware was shipped without the requisite training wheels.


I'll accept all the useless covers in the world, for a quality image.  That's fair.  Surely.


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


#11 of 102 OFFLINE   PappysGirl

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Posted January 23 2013 - 02:16 AM

Unlike dye transfer prints of the era, which had a lush, velvety look, Olive's 4k work leaves the image devoid of that beauty. In its place what we get is something that appears gritty, hard and unfortunately, unpleasant.

that is something i noticed already from the screen captures i've seen. i associate a soft, dreamy quality to ford's visionary ireland and was surprised at a certain "realistic" hardness to the images seen so far (i have yet to get my own copy). they are beautiful compared to the muddy predecessors, but i wonder if they truly capture ford and hoch's originally intended impression. still, i'm glad someone finally took the film in hand, it's better than languishing on a shelf.

#12 of 102 OFFLINE   lark144

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Posted January 23 2013 - 03:58 AM

"Unlike dye transfer prints of the era, which had a lush, velvety look, Olive's 4k work leaves the image devoid of that beauty. In its place what we get is something that appears gritty, hard and unfortunately, unpleasant. Then, allow your eye to move away from the central image, and you're hit by mis-registration." I remember the color in THE QUIET MAN resembling the textures of a Turner water color. I'm very sad to hear that this quality is no longer present. Mr Harris, does the Olive Blu Ray of INDISCREET have the same kind of harshness?

#13 of 102 OFFLINE   Ronald Epstein

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Posted January 23 2013 - 05:26 AM

Thanks to a recommendation by Robert Crawford, I watched

this film a few years back.  Loved it.


I believe I own a copy on DVD, and that DVD has been the

subject of much criticism for many years.


I am happy to hear we are getting something somewhat better

and I believe I will pull the trigger on preordering as I would

very much like to see this film again.


 

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#14 of 102 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted January 23 2013 - 05:27 AM

Originally Posted by lark144 

"Unlike dye transfer prints of the era, which had a lush, velvety look, Olive's 4k work leaves the image devoid of that beauty. In its place what we get is something that appears gritty, hard and unfortunately, unpleasant. Then, allow your eye to move away from the central image, and you're hit by mis-registration."

I remember the color in THE QUIET MAN resembling the textures of a Turner water color. I'm very sad to hear that this quality is no longer present. Mr Harris, does the Olive Blu Ray of INDISCREET have the same kind of harshness?


Yes, Indiscreet does, but for other reasons.


Another word I'll add to the new look of The Quiet Man is "brittle."


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


#15 of 102 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted January 23 2013 - 05:38 AM

Originally Posted by Ronald Epstein 

Thanks to a recommendation by Robert Crawford, I watched

this film a few years back.  Loved it.


I believe I own a copy on DVD, and that DVD has been the

subject of much criticism for many years.


I am happy to hear we are getting something somewhat better

and I believe I will pull the trigger on preordering as I would

very much like to see this film again.

I'm going to have my BD of it tomorrow.  I can't wait to see how it looks on my HT setup.







Crawdaddy


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#16 of 102 ONLINE   David_B_K

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Posted January 23 2013 - 07:07 AM

I am really looking forward to seeing this Blu-ray. The DVD is so wretched I'm not sure I can even lay claim to having seen The Quiet Man at all.

#17 of 102 OFFLINE   JoHud

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Posted January 23 2013 - 12:30 PM

Amazingly, my order arrived from Importcds, yet to my disappointment there was no blu-ray disc inside! I couldn't tell right away since the booklet adds some weight to the item.

#18 of 102 OFFLINE   Robin9

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Posted January 23 2013 - 09:38 PM

Amazingly, my order arrived from Importcds, yet to my disappointment there was no blu-ray disc inside! I couldn't tell right away since the booklet adds some weight to the item.

You were unlucky. I ordered from Import CDs too and mine did have the BRD inside. I take it for granted that Import CDs will give you a FOC replacement.

#19 of 102 OFFLINE   Scott Merryfield

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Posted January 24 2013 - 12:23 AM

My copy arrived yesterday, and we watched the film last night. My only previous viewing experience has been watching this terrific film on TCM, so the new BD transfer was a nice step up. It's not stunning, but still a big improvement over what I have seen in the past. I am very happy to finally have the movie in my collection.

#20 of 102 OFFLINE   ahollis

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Posted January 24 2013 - 03:35 AM

It is a big improvement over past releases. I can saw while not overjoyed with the transfer, I am pleased.
"Get a director and a writer and leave them alone. That`s how the best pictures get made" - William "Wild Bill" Wellman






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