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A few words about...™ Mary Poppins -- in Blu-ray

A Few Words About Disney Blu-ray

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#1 of 398 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted November 27 2013 - 05:03 PM

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I've got to be honest. With all of the re-imagining going on at Disney the past few years with their animated classics, inclusive of the removal of film grain, my initial reaction as the new Blu-ray of Mary Poppins began to reach speed was simple.

Fear. Absolute and totally definable fear.

Then the original logo hit the screen.

And it was correct, with proper film grain. But were they toying with me?

No.

From the fade in of the main title sequence to the close of the end credits, the archival staff at Disney have given us the gift of the season.

An absolutely, brilliant, sparkling, film-like representation of Mary Poppins, one of the more difficult films to bring to Blu-ray.

Filled for its entire 139 minutes with effects shots, mattes, animation combined with live action, and any manner of potential problems, the Disney staff has pulled a rabbit out of a hat and created, well...

Perfection.

The film has been beautifully digitally cleaned. Color, densities, shadow detail (even a bit limited in dupes), and the goddess of grain, are all precisely where they should be, in director Robert Stevenson's 1964 classic. Those of you who have viewed Twilight Time's Jane Eyre have seen another side of the filmmaker.

Audio is equally as exciting. I viewed with the new 7.1 DTS-HD MA. The original monaural mix is also included for those who seek the original experience, although many prints in 1964 were magnetic stereo

I've not seen the film in a number of years, was wondering if the intermission might be included, but the lead in is there with Feed the Birds. The final appearance of the extraordinary Jane Darwell, as the Bird Woman, never fails to bring a tear to my eye.

Ms Darwell enchanted us for for six decades (she began in 1913) with some of the greatest supporting performances captured on film, and to see her in her final shot...

What can I add.

One of the greatest films ever produced, and certainly a jewel in the Disney crown, the new Blu-ray will be on my short list for best classic titles released in 2013, and also on that even shorter list of beautifully restored classic titles.

As my friends Mr. Siskel and Mr. Ebert might have said, "Two thumbs up, and they couldn't possibly be raised higher!"

For those who love the cinema, this is one of those Blu-rays that will make the hair on the back of your neck rise to attention.

Image - 5*

Audio - 5

Absolutely magnificent, and Very Highly Recommended.

RAH
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"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 398 ONLINE   Powell&Pressburger

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Posted November 27 2013 - 05:32 PM

and exhaling. Relieved! :-) Best home video news this season.

Stop the Replacing of original Studio Opening / Closing logos! They are part of film history.

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#3 of 398 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted November 27 2013 - 05:35 PM

Very happy to hear your comments, Robert!


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#4 of 398 OFFLINE   moviebuff75

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Posted November 27 2013 - 05:38 PM

I've been waiting for this review for five years! I'm so excited to get this as it will be tucked safely and beautifully wrapped under my tree on Christmas Morning!


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#5 of 398 ONLINE   lukejosephchung

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Posted November 27 2013 - 05:48 PM

Have the region-free UK pressing of this release, Robert...glad to read your validation that my eyes and ears weren't deceiving me that this was a stellar audio/video harvest...thanks!!! :thumbsup:



#6 of 398 OFFLINE   davidmatychuk

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Posted November 27 2013 - 06:06 PM

My dear cousin took my brother and me to see "Mary Poppins" first-run, at Vancouver's long-gone Strand Theatre. It's a cherished memory. I still have the glossy program; I keep it in my "My Fair Lady" laserdisc box set, along with the "My Fair Lady" glossy program (my cousin took us to that, too). I couldn't be more delighted about this review. 



#7 of 398 OFFLINE   Mark-P

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Posted November 27 2013 - 07:50 PM

Bravo! I too have been waiting 5 years for this release.

The original mix was 4-track magnetic stereo. The fact that optical mono prints were distributed for theaters that required them is irrelevant.



#8 of 398 OFFLINE   Dee Zee

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Posted November 27 2013 - 08:05 PM

Yeah!!!  So looking forward to this version. 



#9 of 398 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted November 27 2013 - 08:53 PM

Thank you, Disney.  Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

 

And to RAH -- who, with these few words, also bestows the gift of the season.


Edited by Charles Smith, November 27 2013 - 09:19 PM.

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#10 of 398 OFFLINE   Reed Grele

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Posted November 27 2013 - 09:21 PM

That's the good news I've been waiting for!

 

Hopefully Rich D or Charles Smith will bring over their copy, so I won't need to spend my tuppence.

After all the projector upgrades I did this year, I don't think I'd be able to scrape up a brass farthing anyway. ;)



#11 of 398 OFFLINE   DavidJ

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Posted November 28 2013 - 12:42 AM

What wonderful news. Thank you for the report.

#12 of 398 OFFLINE   Brian Kidd

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Posted November 28 2013 - 06:12 AM

My boys and I were watching television last night and a commercial for Saving Mr. Banks came on. They asked what it was about and I told them. Turns out they have never seen Mary Poppins. I'm glad that their first viewing will be such a gorgeous transfer.


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#13 of 398 OFFLINE   FoxyMulder

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Posted November 28 2013 - 11:54 AM

In the aspect ratio thread, Bob says it was released at 1.75:1, the blu ray is 1.66:1, any problems with this. ?


Edited by FoxyMulder, November 28 2013 - 11:55 AM.

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#14 of 398 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted November 28 2013 - 04:43 PM

In the aspect ratio thread, Bob says it was released at 1.75:1, the blu ray is 1.66:1, any problems with this. ?


Works perfectly for me at 1.66.

"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 398 OFFLINE   JoshZ

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Posted November 29 2013 - 08:15 AM

I've not seen the film in a number of years, was wondering if the intermission might be included, but the lead in is there with Feed the Birds.

So, is there an intermission? I'm confused.


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#16 of 398 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted November 29 2013 - 08:51 AM

So, is there an intermission? I'm confused.

 

Nope intermission, and not a problem.  Would have to interesting to see it from a historical perspective.  Not even certain how many prints were run in that manner.

 

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


#17 of 398 OFFLINE   davidmatychuk

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Posted November 29 2013 - 01:53 PM

Nope intermission, and not a problem.  Would have to interesting to see it from a historical perspective.  Not even certain how many prints were run in that manner.

 

RAH

No "Mary Poppins" intermission in Vancouver, Canada! (Historically)



#18 of 398 OFFLINE   Randal Gist

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Posted November 29 2013 - 02:36 PM

Mr. Harris, a Big Thank You! for this review. I can breathe a sigh of relief.  I am like a little kid where Mary Poppins and Julie Andrews are concerned. I saw this several times on the original theatrical run, and it is still magical to me after all of these years.



#19 of 398 OFFLINE   JoHud

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Posted November 29 2013 - 02:55 PM

From the fade in of the main title sequence to the close of the end credits, the archival staff at Disney have given us the gift of the season.

An absolutely, brilliant, sparkling, film-like representation of Mary Poppins, one of the more difficult films to bring to Blu-ray.

Filled for its entire 139 minutes with effects shots, mattes, animation combined with live action, and any manner of potential problems, the Disney staff has pulled a rabbit out of a hat and created, well...

Perfection.

 

Indeed, a Christmas miracle.  I've generally been more interested in Disney's live-action classics over their animated ones so my Disney blu-ray library is pretty barren, and their consistent bungling of the latter and their recent snubbing to the former has done little to change this.

 

Very good news here.  This will be my first Disney purchase in quite a while.


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#20 of 398 OFFLINE   WadeM

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Posted November 30 2013 - 06:39 AM

Very good news here.  This will be my first Disney purchase in quite a while.

 

Same here. Because they treated it right, apparently.


Edited by WadeM, November 30 2013 - 06:40 AM.

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