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Sergio Leone Blu-ray thread

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#21 of 38 John Hodson

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Posted August 03 2013 - 05:27 AM

That's very interesting, and gel with the theory that his filmography on DVD and Blu-ray is in total chaos.
 
Unless someone really dedicated + who knows the films spend years dealing with everyone and the material, then truly definitive versions will probably never appear.


I've been saying this for years; realistically time is running out for someone actually involved in any of Leone's films to get on board. It needs to happen soon, because right now - astonishingly - pretty much every film of his is being presented not as Leone wished.


So many films, so little time...
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Lt. Col. Thursday: Beaufort; no preliminary nonsense with him, no ceremonial phrasing. Straight from the shoulder as I tell you, do you hear me? They're recalcitrant swine and they must feel it...


#22 of 38 Grubert

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Posted August 04 2013 - 12:40 PM

Apart from the YouTube clip on page 1 you can also check all the differences between the Paramount version and the long Italian version here:

 

http://www.movie-cen...ort.php?ID=4208

 

The Scorsese restoration restored the following parts:

 

1) about 15 sec from the 31 sec at 0:10:12. If I remember correctly the theatrical cut contains only these 15 sec.

 

2) strangely also the additional 2,5 sec at 0:13:24 from the Rising scene (which is completely missing in the theatrical version)

 

3) half of a second in the McBain scene, where the Paramount cuts a little bit too early. Probably the master was faulty here, which was maybe the point of the first reel change. Not important, and not mentioned in this comparision, but when you know it you recognize what's wrong.

 

The most interesting moments of this long version are imo :

 

1) the tracking shot at 0:21:51

 

2) at 1:25:24 the short scene of Morton having some trouble with tin soldiers on his desk, the only really new part in this long version.

 

3) the scene at 2:00:10 is differently cut compared to the Paramount and the theatrical version, and also contains the only short piece of dialogue (one sentence) in the extra 12 min of the long version.

 

4) a 9,5 sec scene at 2:30:15 which is not in the long version, but is in the Paramount and in the theatrical version.

 

You can also see the color differences between the 2 versions where alternative material was used.

 

I'm generally happy that I was able to watch that long version, and I would like to have it for the sake of completeness as a bonus version on a future home movie release, but it should never replace the theatrical version as it happened in Italy. Longer is not always better.



#23 of 38 Grubert

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Posted August 04 2013 - 12:44 PM

I posted this at DVDCompare:

 

"I recently had an in-depth chat with Mr Frayling about all things Leone & asked him in particular why the missing shots & scenes weren't added into the restored version.. I said even if they didn't exist in decent quality, they would still be welcomed, either seamlessly branched or included as an extra. He replied that it was for no other reason than personal & political wrangling between different studios & archives holding the relevant prints, that simply don't, or won't, communicate with each other.

 

Therefore, don't hold out for an even better, longest-possible cut anytime soon."

 

Ok, but the Scorsese restoration was compiled from a longer version. They must have had access to the long 177 min version as they also made the Rising scene longer than it already was.



#24 of 38 Stefan Andersson

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Posted August 05 2013 - 04:53 AM

A description in German of the recent German Blu of A Genius, Two Partners and a Dupe compared with other DVDs of this title:

 

http://www.schnittbe...t.php?ID=406480

 

No DVD is uncut.

 

The Italian DVD is the most complete.

 

It has long been known that the original negative was stolen many years ago. It has not been found. The film was re-assembled using alternate takes.


Edited by Stefan Andersson, August 05 2013 - 04:56 AM.


#25 of 38 HDvision

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Posted August 05 2013 - 11:11 PM

You must mean the movie is restored using lower generation than the negative sources? Like 35mm or internegs or IPs?

 

EDIT: you must mean that story about some of the original film negative being stolen during production and the film edit was finished with alternate takes? It shouldn't make a difference when it comes to restoration. That concerned only a few scenes at the end.


Edited by HDvision, August 06 2013 - 01:10 AM.


#26 of 38 SAhmed

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Posted August 06 2013 - 04:07 AM

After reading through this thread, I went ahead and ordered the Italian releases of "A Fistful of Dollars" and "The Good, The Bad And The Ugly". They arrived yesterday.

 

Opening the delivery package, I became real worried about the GBU disc as it's Blu ray case was significantly damaged/broken in the upper area - fortunately it played without any hiccups. I sampled some of my favorite scenes and although I am by no means an expert, to my eyes all I can say is wow! - significantly better clarity and colors on my 126in screen. I was noticing details that I have "never" seeen before - names on graves, texture on clothes/uniforms, mud on cannon wheels, etc... The audio was great as well - watching this with the Italian track was "unsual" but it didn't bother me that much as I know most of the dialog anyway !

 

The packing for AFOD was great - quite a few stills and booklet to go with the disc itself. This was a "real" limited edition. Again I felt that picture quality was signicantly better than the US MGM release but it it wasn't as a "night and day" difference as it was for GBU.

 

Just hope that perhaps somebody like Criterion will be able to do justice to Sergio Leone's work here in the US. For the moment I am happy with my puchases - thanks for the effort and recommendation HDvision.

 

Regards,


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#27 of 38 Stefan Andersson

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Posted August 06 2013 - 05:00 AM

You must mean the movie is restored using lower generation than the negative sources? Like 35mm or internegs or IPs?

 

EDIT: you must mean that story about some of the original film negative being stolen during production and the film edit was finished with alternate takes? It shouldn't make a difference when it comes to restoration. That concerned only a few scenes at the end.

Yes, that´s the story I mean. Thanks for updating!



#28 of 38 HDvision

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Posted August 06 2013 - 09:24 AM

Thank you SAhmed, you know, comparing both versions, I'm wondering if the MGM Blu-ray of GBU is not an upscale of a SD master. There's too much difference with the italian Blu regarding the picture details. It looks as mint as a Beta digi master would on a high def screen. As I noted, a fan downrezed in photoshop a capture of the italian disc, then uprezzed it back and compared with the MGM blu, and it still had way more details than the MGM.



#29 of 38 HDvision

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Posted August 06 2013 - 10:37 AM

For a few dollars more german version has dropped now to 9,97 € that's real cheap to own the uncut version even if the master is full of speckles and damage... it's the complete framing + complete unedited film, so get it while you can.



#30 of 38 Spencer Draper

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Posted August 09 2013 - 10:10 AM

Triage labs did the work for MGM and the SEs. For FAFDM they used the o-neg which is why for that film the MGM source is best. On AFOD, MGM has had to always use their own source since they do not have the full rights to the film. This is why the Italian restoration used the o-neg and MGM was still using their best available source.

GBU may be that, an outdated master. The SE DVD looked nothing like the SE 35mm print (which other than color and the mix which shall not be mentioned was not bad) and looked little better if not the same as the old International cut DVD. The Italian Mondo disc appears to actually look like a 1966 film and in the Leone mold. It is the Italian version which has a few shot differences as noted from the International/US version.

 

I still get confused over what is supposed to be in and out for OUATITW. DYS needs the LD mono restored with the correct cue inserted for the flashback scene, Then the film needs to be timed correctly.

OUATIA should have the restored longer version arrive stateside via WB at some point. The Italian BD is very poor. Also, the film's mono mix has been abandoned in favor of a 5.1 track that merely expands the mono stem while being confined to the center channel.

 

Has anyone had trouble with ordering from Amazon Italy and Germany? I've never placed a foreign order with Amazon before.



#31 of 38 SAhmed

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Posted August 09 2013 - 10:31 AM

Triage labs did the work for MGM and the SEs. For FAFDM they used the o-neg which is why for that film the MGM source is best. On AFOD, MGM has had to always use their own source since they do not have the full rights to the film. This is why the Italian restoration used the o-neg and MGM was still using their best available source.

GBU may be that, an outdated master. The SE DVD looked nothing like the SE 35mm print (which other than color and the mix which shall not be mentioned was not bad) and looked little better if not the same as the old International cut DVD. The Italian Mondo disc appears to actually look like a 1966 film and in the Leone mold. It is the Italian version which has a few shot differences as noted from the International/US version.

 

I still get confused over what is supposed to be in and out for OUATITW. DYS needs the LD mono restored with the correct cue inserted for the flashback scene, Then the film needs to be timed correctly.

OUATIA should have the restored longer version arrive stateside via WB at some point. The Italian BD is very poor. Also, the film's mono mix has been abandoned in favor of a 5.1 track that merely expands the mono stem while being confined to the center channel.

 

Has anyone had trouble with ordering from Amazon Italy and Germany? I've never placed a foreign order with Amazon before.

 

Hi Spencer,

 

I had no problems ordering from either Amazon ( Italy, Germany or UK ) - pretty much the same process as in USA and secure (not sure that I would easily order from other sources though unless via say Paypal). The only difference is that some of your payment options may not be available. e.g. Here in the US I can use my Discover card but was not presented with the option for UK/Italy/Germany.

 

Other than that, in my experience, it normally takes about 7-10 days for the discs to arrive.

 

Regards,



#32 of 38 tyee

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Posted November 16 2013 - 11:30 AM

Just some more info for everyone. My favourite versions of the discs are the Italian ones for colour.

 

The Good, Bad, Ugly - Rigby Reardon on avsforum made a avisynth script (in 2009) that enables you to extract the audio from the US Blu-ray version so it syncs with the Italian Blu-ray version video exactly. I've tried it and it works. The italian disc had the scenes edited differently than the US version, so the script fixes this.

 

Link to info

 

For a Few Dollars More - I really like the Italian Blu-ray colors on this one. It comes only with an Italian soundtrack, until now! Like Rigby, I have made an avisynth script to extract the audio from the German Blu and sync it to the Italian Blu video. It's not 100% but very close, meaning only a couple of instances do you notice it out of sync for a second. You must purchase both these discs of course to get the 2 audio/video versions.

 

Link to info

 

Amazon.it is releasing more Blus on Dec. 5, 2013. Looks like no english audio as of the description today but we'll have to wait and see.

 

Good, bad, ugly link

 

For a few dollars more link

 

Once upon a time in the west link

 

Giu La Testa (Duck you Sucker/Fistful of Dynamite/Once Upon a Time… the Revolution) link


Edited by tyee, November 16 2013 - 05:46 PM.


#33 of 38 Billy Batson

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Posted November 16 2013 - 05:13 PM

My favourite Leone western, Giu La Testa is being released in Italy on the 4th December. I don't know anything about it yet, maybe it doesn't even have an English soundtrack. I shall keep an eye out for reports.


Edited by Billy Batson, November 16 2013 - 05:16 PM.


#34 of 38 tyee

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Posted November 16 2013 - 05:47 PM

Thanks Billy, added a link to it in my post above.



#35 of 38 Billy Batson

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Posted November 19 2013 - 07:35 AM

My favourite Leone western, Giu La Testa is being released in Italy on the 4th December. I don't know anything about it yet, maybe it doesn't even have an English soundtrack. I shall keep an eye out for reports.

 

Looking very good, see post 32

 

http://forum.blu-ray...t=229638&page=2


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#36 of 38 Brenty

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Posted November 19 2013 - 09:57 AM

I love Leone, obviously, & the only film of his I haven't yet seen is Once... the Revolution/Duck You Sucker.

 

I really want to see it - now - even if it's on an imperfect DVD. Once again David, no matter how many times I read its section in your initial post, it's v unclear; can you please just tell us, as simply as possible, which release you recommend overall?

 

Thanks!



#37 of 38 HDvision

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Posted November 19 2013 - 12:21 PM

Hi Brenty, Duck you sucker is only "almost" complete in the italian DVD. As mentioned, the massacre at about 1h25mn into the movie, is longer only on the italian version and from this point on, there's about 37s more in the italian version. However the DVD lacks the opening card as seen on the LD. But my take is the italian DVD, minus the blunder in the opening shortened card, is the only version to get for now.

 

There is an HDTV version but it's cut like the US DVD.



#38 of 38 Brenty

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Posted November 20 2013 - 06:22 AM

Ok David, just checked out DVDCompare & the Italian disc seems to not be English-friendly... Does it have the same PQ as the various MGM releases? What's with the differing OAR; does it lose or gain info?

 

For some reason, I can't seem to cut & paste URLs into my posts; presumably an anomaly of the new forum software.

However, if you go to Amazon Italy & search for "Giu la testa" (Can't even do a grave accent over the 'u' - what's going on?!), you'll see that it's being released on Blu-ray next month!


Edited by Brenty, November 20 2013 - 06:22 AM.

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