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HTF REVIEW: "Victor/Victoria" (with screenshots)


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#1 of 27 OFFLINE   Ronald Epstein

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Posted May 29 2002 - 03:56 AM

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Victor/Victoria






Studio: MGM (Released thru Warner Brothers)
Year: 1982
Rated: PG
Film Length: 135 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 16X9 Enhanced Widescreen (2.35:1)



Le Jazz Hot


You guys are in for a real treat!

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It certainly took long enough for Warner Home
Video to release Victor/Victoria, but the
wait is totally justified as you will learn through
this review.

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From Director Blake Edwards of Pink Panther fame,
Victor/Victoria is a rollicking satire of
the times and issues in Paris during the Thirties.
It's the story of Victoria (Julie Andrews), who is
A starving singer in depression-era Paris who is
convinced by an equally hapless Caroll Todd
(Robert Preston) that she would gain success on
the transvestite circuit by passing herself off
as a man.

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With her hair cut short, donning men's clothing,
Victoria becomes Victor, promoted as being one of
the greatest male Impersonators in all of Europe.
The act catches the attention of Chicago nightclub
owner King Marchand (James Garner), who suspects
that perhaps "he" is actually a "she".

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Victor/Victoria became one of the highest-
grossing films of 1982. It's a crowning achievement
of Blake Edwards, full of witty dialogue and
show-stopping musical numbers featuring the legendary
Julie Andrews.


How is the transfer?


Sometimes waiting pays off. Warner Brothers has
produced an astounding transfer that is a feast
for the eyes. The print is remarkably clean, with
no noticeable blemish. Even the opening credits
are blemish-free. The picture looks virtually
perfect with no noticeable grain or video noise.
The colors are immensely balanced, with flesh tones
looking dead-on accurate. Even the nightclub
scenes filled with reds, never come off as being
oversaturated, nor do they give off any picture
noise that is usually associated with those colors.
I can't say enough about how good -- no, great --
this transfer looks. It ranks up there with the
best catalog transfers available.

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The newly remastered 5.1 Digital Audio is a bit
of a letdown. Don't get me wrong -- the audio
is robust and punchy across the front channels.
The problem is with the rears that seem to have
surround information being sent to them, but can
hardly be heard above the front channels. The
only time I really heard the surrounds kick in
at an audible level was during a train station
scene about 1 hour into the movie. After that,
there was one other scene with a private detective
getting caught in a rainstorm where surrounding
thunder could be heard. Simple effect noises that
would give ambiance to a rain storm, for instance,
was either never added or just not recorded at a
level loud enough to be heard.


Special Features

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The DVD features a feature-length audio commentary
by Julie Andrews and Blake Edwards.

The original theatrical trailer is also
included as well as Cast and Crew Filmographies
and a list of Awards the film has won.


Final Thoughts


You just can't go wrong with this DVD for both
its entertainment value and quality transfer.
It's also an opportunity to see Robert Preston
in full form in one of his final musical
performances.

Release Date: June 4, 2002

Ronald J Epstein
Home Theater Forum co-owner

 

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#2 of 27 OFFLINE   Peter Apruzzese

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Posted May 29 2002 - 04:10 AM

Nice review, Ron. This is one of my wife's favorite musicals (I like it, too) and I can't wait to surprise her with it next week.

I saw this recently in a private showing in 35mm Dolby Stereo and the rears were fairly quiet as well, so it seems like the remastering is an accurate representation of the original soundtrack. Glad to hear about the picture quality, too.
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#3 of 27 OFFLINE   Steven_J_H

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Posted May 29 2002 - 04:10 AM

Thanks Ron. Can't wait to pick up another one of my favorite Blake Edwards films.Posted Image

#4 of 27 OFFLINE   Roger Rollins

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Posted May 29 2002 - 04:33 AM

Great news indeed! I can't wait to pick this one up, as it's always been one of my favorites. I'm particularly excited to hear the commentary by Mr. & Mrs. Edwards.

Thanks to Ron for an informative & exciting review.

#5 of 27 OFFLINE   David Lambert

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Posted May 29 2002 - 05:24 AM

Thanks, Ron. I've been humming tunes from this show since the announcement was made. I'm looking forward to this disc like you can't believe! One of my absolute favorites of all time...I'm so glad they did it justice!
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#6 of 27 OFFLINE   Mark Bendiksen

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Posted May 29 2002 - 06:30 AM


Awesome. I'm pre-ordering my copy right now!


#7 of 27 OFFLINE   DaViD Boulet

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Posted May 29 2002 - 07:25 AM

Thanks Ron. Can't wait!
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#8 of 27 OFFLINE   Jeff_HR

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Posted May 29 2002 - 08:49 AM

I've had it on pre-order for a long time(After I mistakenly bought the stage version). I'm really glad that it has been very well done!Posted Image Posted Image
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#9 of 27 OFFLINE   Gavin_L

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Posted May 29 2002 - 08:53 AM

awesome great to see this finally released, thanks for the review ron

#10 of 27 OFFLINE   Marty M

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Posted May 29 2002 - 09:23 AM

Thanks for the review. I have always liked this movie. James Garner and Julie Andrews have great chemistry. As far as the sound, I believe the theatrical release was in mono, so I am not surprised the surrounds are weak.

Now if we could only get the first James Garner and Julie Andrews movie on DVD -- The Americanization of Emily.
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#11 of 27 OFFLINE   SteveP

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Posted May 29 2002 - 06:26 PM

Victor/Victoria was originally released in Dolby stereo.

#12 of 27 OFFLINE   Brian Kidd

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Posted May 30 2002 - 04:00 AM

I enjoy this films ever so much more than the recent B'way Musical version. That one was lovely to look at, but sadly soulless.
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#13 of 27 OFFLINE   michael deakin

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Posted May 30 2002 - 05:29 AM

Thanks Ron.
This is on my order list. Now if only they can release "Thoroughly Modern Millie". I would be a very happy man. Michael Posted Image

#14 of 27 OFFLINE   John Kilduff

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Posted May 30 2002 - 02:32 PM

All signs point to a great release for this title. I'm looking forward to the Edwards-and-Andrews commentary.

Sincerely,

John "Likes his jazz hot" Kilduff
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#15 of 27 OFFLINE   Rob Willey

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Posted May 31 2002 - 05:47 AM

I was going to get this one anyway, but now I'm even more anxious to own it. Thanks, Ron.

Speaking of Blake Edwards, Julie Andrews and Robert Preston, I'll be picking up S.O.B. on the same day. I can't wait!!

Rob
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#16 of 27 OFFLINE   Jenna

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Posted June 02 2002 - 07:47 AM

Quote:
I enjoyed this film ever so much more than the recent B'way Musical version. That one was lovely to look at, but sadly soulless.

I agree. I mistakenly bought that version and missed the collective talent of the superb original cast. I *LOVE* this movie, and can't wait to crank up "Le Jazz Hot" on my home theater. This musical will be second only to "Moulin Rouge" in the eye candy department!

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#17 of 27 OFFLINE   Jenna

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Posted June 04 2002 - 05:58 AM

WOW! Just picked this up at Circuit City for $15.99 and popped it in the DVD player.

Ron, you are so right -- what an excellent transfer!
Sounds excellent too!
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#18 of 27 OFFLINE   David Lambert

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Posted June 04 2002 - 02:28 PM

Just watched chapters 11-13 with my wife's permission (it's her birthday, after all!).

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By the time it was over, I realized that I'd gone from simply humming the tune under my breathe to belting out the song from the top of my lungs. With the lights out in the room, the picture literally sizzled and jumped off the screen. Amazing!

Good job, Warner. This is a bellweather release here for me; a real FAVORITE that looks like it was done right from top-to-bottom. I will be viewing and re-viewing it many times through the weeks to come, and will certainly be the first to scream if something is amiss. So far, so good, though. I'm really PROUD of you for this one!

Looking forward to the rest of the show, and to viewing it again with the commentary. Posted Image
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#19 of 27 OFFLINE   John Berggren

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Posted June 05 2002 - 01:29 AM

I can't wait to pick this up. I've never seen the film, but I love Julie Andrews. It should be great to get to hear her in commentary as well. Thanks for another excellent review!
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#20 of 27 OFFLINE   Mark Bendiksen

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Posted June 06 2002 - 06:40 AM


I just went home for lunch and watched the first 45 minutes or so of this disc.

WOW!

If I didn't know for a fact that this movie was twenty years old then I'd swear that it was a new release. The picture quality is drop dead gorgeous.
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