[font="'times new roman', times, serif;"]With Hit the Deck, the latest Warner Archive title to arrive on Blu-ray, there's quite a bit more going on than meets the eye.[/font]
[font="'times new roman', times, serif;"]It's a quality production, with great talent, both in behind and in front of the camera.[/font]
[font="'times new roman', times, serif;"]Technologically, it's one of the earlier M-G-M CinemaScope [/font]productions, photographed on the relatively early Eastman Color 5248 stock.
What's important to know, is that a great deal of effort and expense has gone into the release. There's nothing "off the shelf" about it.
Warner Bros. has gone back to the original camera negative, and created a new wet-gate interpositive for scanning. Color is superb, and resolution and detail are so good that one can easily see that the separation masters used to create the main title background, were re-composited (in 1954), out of sync. Watch the sailers as they march across the screen.
Audio has been harvested from the original stems, and remixed in 5.1.
The cast includes many of the big names from the studio "stable." Jane Powell, in one of her final roles, Tony Martin, Debbie Reynolds, Walter Pidgeon, Vic Damone, Gene Raymond, Ann Miller, and a young Russ Tamblyn.
While not up to the greatness of a Singin' in the Rain, Anchors Aweigh, or Gigi, (I'd consider Hit the Deck an A- production), it remains sixty years after it's release, an entertaining musical, with great talent, and one of those technological marvels that make up the early days of CinemaScope.
A beautiful Blu-ray from the Warner Archive. With a history of past theatrical (1927) and film productions, based upon the original work, produced throughout several decades, it serves as an interesting comparison to Follow the Fleet.
The new Blu-ray is a gorgeous representation of Eastman and the Cinemascope / Stereo process in it's early years.
Image - 4.5
Audio - 5