A few words about…™ Abbott & Costello: The Complete Universal Pictures Collection – in Blu-ray

This should be one of the most important Christmas gifts for cinephiles in 2019. 4 Stars

Let’s look at some numbers.

1929 – 1933 Five films – Paramount

1935 – 1941 Five films – M-G-M

The Marx Brothers

_______________
1924 – 1932 More shorts than can be counted – Hal Roach
followed by more shorts between features to 1937

1932 – 1940 Ten films for Roach
followed by a handful at Fox

Laurel & Hardy
______________

1940 – 1955 28 feature films for Universal plus a few for other studios.

Abbott & Costello

______________

By numbers of feature films alone, releasing a complete collection of Abbott & Costello’s work at Universal is a daunting project.

You know that you’re not doing 28 new image harvests, so selecting the best that exist is also not a minor bit of work.

All of which causes a tip of the hat to the folks at Shout Factory – this is their 92nd “select” release, as well as the team at Universal.

I’m going to generalize here, as I don’t have the ability to fully screen 28 films, but I have sampled each disc.

Some have window-boxed main titles.

Except for a couple which are noted by lessor scores, and which are from problematic dupes, all are of very pleasing quality.

Some have minor stabilization of clean-up issues, but never anything troublesome.

This should be one of the most important Christmas gifts for cinephiles in 2019.

Let’s examine more numbers, by title:

One Night in the Tropics – 1940

Image – 3.5

Audio – 3 (noisy)

Buck Privates – 1941

Image – 4.5

Audio – 5

In the Navy – 1941

Image – 3.5 (grainy dupe)

Audio – 5

Hold That Ghost – 1941

Image – 4

Audio – 5

Keep ‘Em Flying – 1941

Image – 4.25

Audio – 5

Ride ‘Em Cowboy – 1942

Image – 4.25

Audio – 5

Pardon My Sarong – 1942

Image – 4.25

Audio – 4.25

Who Done It? – 1942

Image – 4.5

Audio – 5

It Ain’t Hay – 1943

Image – 4.25

Audio – 5

Hit the Ice – 1943

Image – 4.25

Audio – 5

In Society – 1944

Image – 4.25

Audio – 4.75

Here Come the Co-eds – 1945

Image – 4.25

Audio – 4.5

The Naughty Nineties – 1945

Image – 4.25

Audio – 5

Little Giant – 1946

Image – 4.5

Audio – 5

The Time of Their Lives – 1946

Image – 4.5

Audio – 5

Buck Privates Come Home – 1947

Image – 4.5

Audio – 5

First with new Universal Logo

The Wistful Widow of Wagon Gap – 1947

Image – 4.5

Audio – 5

Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein – 1948

Image – 4.25

Audio – 5

Mexican Hayride – 1948

Image – 4.25

Audio – 5

Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer – 1949

Image – 4

Audio – 4 (noisy)

Abbott and Costello in the Foreign Legion – 1950

Image – 4.25

Audio – 5

Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man – 1951

Image – 4.35

Audio – 5

Comin’ Round the Mountain – 1951

Image – 4.35

Audio – 5

Lost in Alaska – 1952

Image – 3.5

Audio – 5

Abbott and Costello Go to Mars – 1953

Image – 4.5

Audio – 5

Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde – 1953

Image – 4

Audio – 4

Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Kops – 1955

Image – 4.5

Audio – 5

First in 1.85

Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy – 1955

Image – 4.75

Audio – 5

A final note about pricing and value.

The set has a list price of $170, and is available for pre-order at $125.

15 Blu-ray discs. 14 with two features each, plus a disc of extras.

28 feature films.

This works out to $4.46 per feature.

Highly Recommended

RAH

 

Published by

Robert Harris

editor,member

89 Comments

  1. I’m really excited to see this set coming soon! I pre-ordered it the day it became available from Shout Factory. I am, however, somewhat disappointed that One Night in the Tropics and In the Navy are still using the same poor prints. I was hoping for an upgrade on both of those, especially In the Navy.

    On the plus side, of the boys first 10 films those two are my least favorite. So I’m trying to look at it glass half full. Everything else looks tremendous about the set and I am very much looking forward to it.

    Gary “counting the days” O.

  2. Gary OS

    I’m really excited to see this set coming soon! I pre-ordered it the day it became available from Shout Factory. I am, however, somewhat disappointed that One Night in the Tropics and In the Navy are still using the same poor prints. I was hoping for an upgrade on both of those, especially In the Navy.

    On the plus side, of the boys first 10 films those two are my least favorite. So I’m trying to look at it glass half full. Everything else looks tremendous about the set and I am very much looking forward to it.

    Gary “counting the days” O.

    I don't recall IN THE NAVY (1941) looking terrible on the DVD sets, but it's been a long time since I've given that title a viewing.

    ONE NIGHT IN THE TROPICS (1940) is the stand out disappointment for me, in terms of the mish mash of original and reconstructed opening and closing cards and credits. That they were all original on the VHS release makes the likelihood these weren't reinstated all the more annoying. Is it possible that print was a casualty of the 2008 Universal fire?

    Everything else looks great, especially with the apparently improved (Based on RAH's 4.5 Image rating!) BUCK PRIVATES (1941), and ABBOTT AND COSTELLO MEET THE KEYSTONE KOPS (1955) finally getting a proper Aspect Ratio release. A very limited budget means I'll be sticking with the Reissued 2014 DVD set, though!

    CHEERS! 🙂

  3. Tony Bensley

    I don't recall IN THE NAVY (1941) looking terrible on the DVD sets, but it's been a long time since I've given that title a viewing.

    Yes, In the Navy has always been under par in the previous releases. Was hoping it would get cleaned up for blu. But apparently that’s not the case. Too bad.

  4. Tony Bensley

    I don't recall IN THE NAVY (1941) looking terrible on the DVD sets, but it's been a long time since I've given that title a viewing.

    CHEERS! 🙂

    Certainly in the DVD suitcase release, I thought IN THE NAVY was the worse looking of all the releases. Bad contrast, lack of sharpness, it looked like a dupe of a dupe of a dupe. I guess something happened to the negative that couldn't be fixed or the negative just went bad or was disposed of at some point. Frankly, I don't think we will ever see the quality and care on blu ray as we did on the Classic Monster Series Universal. I can only guess they cost a fortune to restore, fixing both sound and picture. Not to say very good fine grains and other sources have not been used for their other films of the period, but going from nitrate camera negative with 4k scans, and post production work to make them look as pristine as can be, I think are reserved for only a handful of their classics of the 30s and 40s.

  5. John Morgan

    Certainly in the DVD suitcase release, I thought IN THE NAVY was the worse looking of all the releases. Bad contrast, lack of sharpness, it looked like a dupe of a dupe of a dupe. I guess something happened to the negative that couldn't be fixed or the negative just went bad or was disposed of at some point. Frankly, I don't think we will ever see the quality and care on blu ray as we did on the Classic Monster Series Universal. I can only guess they cost a fortune to restore, fixing both sound and picture. Not to say very good fine grains and other sources have not been used for their other films of the period, but going from nitrate camera negative with 4k scans, and post production work to make them look as pristine as can be, I think are reserved for only a handful of their classics of the 30s and 40s.

    To make the overall point again…

    Of the 28 films, only a few are of lesser quality. The vast majority are a pleasure.

  6. Robert Harris

    To make the overall point again…

    Of the 28 films, only a few are of lesser quality. The vast majority are a pleasure.

    I agree. But. And I realize it’s only an extra but the transfers in the “Abbott and Costello Meet Castle Films” segment are terrible. Soft focus. A hair in the gate. Poor detail. I had to pull out some of my 16mm Castle prints to make sure it wasn’t me. I’m still grateful for this set but the Castle extra could have been a real treat.

  7. BobO’Link

    I guess I'm the odd-man out with extras. I rarely bother with them – even for much loved movies/actors/etc. If I do watch them it's normally a once and never again proposition and I've never watch the extras on my DVD set. I'd rather watch the movies. For me, *that's* the main attraction. Frankly, if leaving off extras on any set would mean better quality on a movie or two then leave 'em off.

    If there was a choice, I would certainly go for the best possible looking Main Feature. As far as the A & C set, I am sure they got what Universal gave them and went out of their way to include the extras. The ones I look forward to are the outtakes. I read that Lou Costello had outtakes from virtually all his films…I guess he had the clout. Haven't seen the set yet, but they have a relatively small percentage of outtakes, but of course, maybe all of them don't exist anymore. Some of them were included in the suitcase edition. Off hand, I remember HIT THE ICE, BUCK PRIVATES COME HOME and I think LITTLE GIANT.
    By the way, Robert Harris didn't mention it, but I would assume MEET FRANKENSTEIN, MEET THE MUMMY and BUCK PRIVATES are same masters from previous Blu rays. Some of their films I don't really care for, but I am going to see all of them in order when I get the set. I love too many to list, but LOST IN ALASKA, IN THE FOREIGN LEGION, even MEET THE MUMMY looks too shoddy and cheap for me. But I never dreamt that all the Universal Abbott and Costello films would be released in a set on Blu Ray. Maybe physical media is in its death throes, and since I began collecting blu rays from the time they first appeared, my monthly budget of new product has doubled in the last couple of years. So whatever is to happen, I am still excited that so many British and foreign and American films are released. I should get stock in Amazon the way my money goes to them.

  8. John Morgan

    If there was a choice, I would certainly go for the best possible looking Main Feature. As far as the A & C set, I am sure they got what Universal gave them and went out of their way to include the extras. The ones I look forward to are the outtakes. I read that Lou Costello had outtakes from virtually all his films…I guess he had the clout. Haven't seen the set yet, but they have a relatively small percentage of outtakes, but of course, maybe all of them don't exist anymore. Some of them were included in the suitcase edition. Off hand, I remember HIT THE ICE, BUCK PRIVATES COME HOME and I think LITTLE GIANT.
    By the way, Robert Harris didn't mention it, but I would assume MEET FRANKENSTEIN, MEET THE MUMMY and BUCK PRIVATES are same masters from previous Blu rays. Some of their films I don't really care for, but I am going to see all of them in order when I get the set. I love too many to list, but LOST IN ALASKA, IN THE FOREIGN LEGION, even MEET THE MUMMY looks too shoddy and cheap for me. But I never dreamt that all the Universal Abbott and Costello films would be released in a set on Blu Ray. Maybe physical media is in its death throes, and since I began collecting blu rays from the time they first appeared, my monthly budget of new product has doubled in the last couple of years. So whatever is to happen, I am still excited that so many British and foreign and American films are released. I should get stock in Amazon the way my money goes to them.

    Regarding BUCK PRIVATES (1941), I'm doubtful it's the original Blu-ray release for two reasons:
    1. RAH's 4.5 Image Rating! (BP was reportedly DNR'd to death on the individual 2012 Blu-ray release!)
    2. Ron Palumbo and Bob Furmanek's commentary track is listed as being included, which it wasn't on the 2012 Blu-ray, either.

    I would assume the other Blu-ray titles mentioned, plus ABBOTT AND COSTELLO MEET THE INVISIBLE MAN (1951) are probably from the same transfers.

    Of course, there's the long overdue proper aspect ratio home video debut of ABBOTT AND COSTELLO MEET THE KEYSTONE KOPS (1955)!

    Huge thanks to Bob Furmanek for his most valued input! I know he's been after Universal for years in getting the Aspect Ratios right for the last two A&C Universal Features, and this now appears to finally have been fully realized!

    If only I had $140 – $150 CDN to spare! ^_^

    CHEERS! 🙂

  9. John Morgan

    I love too many to list, but LOST IN ALASKA, IN THE FOREIGN LEGION, even MEET THE MUMMY looks too shoddy and cheap for me.

    I have the Elephant Films Meet the Mummy which is open matte. I started watching it zoomed in to the correct aspect ratio, but got curious what it looked like wide open. I found that the picture looks considerably less cheap when you can see more of the sets. They were repurposing sets from older Egyptian themed movies and some of them were really nice. When it's all cropped down to a two shot, you can't really appreciate that.

  10. Now that many of us have, or will soon have, this set in our hands I thought I'd list my favorite Top Ten films again and see if others want to compare. I tweaked my just a tad from the earlier thread on this release:

    1) Keep 'Em Flying
    2) Ride 'Em Cowboy
    3) Hit the Ice
    4) Here Come the Co-Eds
    5) Buck Privates
    6) Pardon My Sarong
    7) In Hollywood
    8) Who Done It
    9) A&C Meet the Killer
    10) Wistful Widow of Wagon Gap

    Honorable Mentions: Hold That Ghost, A&C Meet Frankenstein, In the Navy, Buck Privates Come Home, Meet the Invisible Man and Comin' Round the Mountain.

    A couple of things are obvious in my list. First, I don't much care for the boys' foray over to MGM. Other than 'In Hollywood', I just didn't care for those pictures much. Second, I'm obviously a big fan of their earlier work. The musical numbers never bother me much at all. In fact I downright love many of the songs. And to be honest, I feel like Lou was never the same after coming back from his bout with RF and the loss of his son (and who could blame him?). If I could only pick one 'era' of their films, it would be that first one before Lou went down. Those were the best of the best in my book.

    Not nearly as big a fan of the monster films as others are. They are fine, and I do appreciate 'Meet Frankenstein' for reviving the boys career somewhat and for it being a well-done movie. But I vastly prefer 'Meet the Killer' to any of the others.

    So happy to have this set in my hands. Am contemplating waiting until the start of the New Year to begin watching these again – in order.

  11. Glad to hear this came out well. My favorite release of 2019. I ordered from Amazon so hopefully I will have this next week.
    My Top 10 (and really tough for me, as it could easily be every film from 41-45 as my top). I'm not as big a fan of the monsters pictures as others either as they were made when they were older and aging.
    1.) Who Done It
    2.) Rio Rita
    3.) Here Come the Coeds
    4.) Pardon My Sarong
    5.) Ride em Cowboy
    6.) In Hollywood
    7.) Buck Privates
    8.) Hold That Ghost
    9.) In Society
    10.) Keep em Flying
    Honorable mentions to In The Navy, Lost in a Harem, Buck Privates Come Home, Hit the Ice and Meet the Killer

  12. Gary OS

    Now that many of us have, or will soon have, this set in our hands I thought I'd list my favorite Top Ten films again and see if others want to compare. I tweaked my just a tad from the earlier thread on this release:

    1) Keep 'Em Flying
    2) Ride 'Em Cowboy
    3) Hit the Ice
    4) Here Come the Co-Eds
    5) Buck Privates
    6) Pardon My Sarong
    7) In Hollywood
    8) Who Done It
    9) A&C Meet the Killer
    10) Wistful Widow of Wagon Gap

    Honorable Mentions: Hold That Ghost, A&C Meet Frankenstein, In the Navy, Buck Privates Come Home, Meet the Invisible Man and Comin' Round the Mountain.

    A couple of things are obvious in my list. First, I don't much care for the boys' foray over to MGM. Other than 'In Hollywood', I just didn't care for those pictures much. Second, I'm obviously a big fan of their earlier work. The musical numbers never bother me much at all. In fact I downright love many of the songs. And to be honest, I feel like Lou was never the same after coming back from his bout with RF and the loss of his son (and who could blame him?). If I could only pick one 'era' of their films, it would be that first one before Lou went down. Those were the best of the best in my book.

    Not nearly as big a fan of the monster films as others are. They are fine, and I do appreciate 'Meet Frankenstein' for reviving the boys career somewhat and for it being a well-done movie. But I vastly prefer 'Meet the Killer' to any of the others.

    Gary "so happy to have this set in my hands. Am contemplating waiting until the start of the New Year to begin watching these again – in order" O.

    Lost In A Harem was probably the best of the 3 they made at MGM. Rio Rita had a few good scenes too.

  13. timk1041

    Lost In A Harem was probably the best of the 3 they made at MGM. Rio Rita had a few good scenes too.

    Everyone has different tastes, and that's what makes the world go 'round. But for me, Lost in a Harem was my least favorite of the 3 MGM films, Jimmy Dorsey and his orchestra not withstanding. The Murray Leonard bit in the jail really falls flat with me even though I know it's a classic bit.

    Of the other 5 non-Universal films the boys did, I think I'd rank them (and shock everyone here):

    1) The Noose Hangs High
    2) Jack & the Beanstalk
    3) Africa Screams
    4) A&C Meet Capt Kidd
    5) Dance with Me, Henry

    I know placing Jack/Beanstalk at #2 will be extremely controversial to most fans here, but I stand by it.

    Gary "spot-checked In the Navy last night and unfortunately have to agree with the reviewer – it's below par visually" O.

  14. Gary OS

    Of the other 5 non-Universal films the boys did, I think I'd rank them (and shock everyone here):

    1) The Noose Hangs High
    2) Jack & the Beanstalk
    3) Africa Screams
    4) A&C Meet Capt Kidd
    5) Dance with Me, Henry

    I know placing Jack/Beanstalk at #2 will be extremely controversial to most fans here, but I stand by it.

    Why do you think any of us would be shocked or think your opinion is controversial??
    It’s just your opinion. Not shocking or controversial to me in any way. 🙂

  15. John Sparks

    I have 5 prints of MEET FRANKENSTEIN (2 SD/3 BD) and getting another one is not in the cards. What I would buy in a second are all their other movies on BD.

    I think we all do but with 27 other films plus lots of great extras I don't even count that. If you look at as 27 films instead of 28 it still comes out to around $5.00 a film. If they released them separately going by Shouts normal pricing they would be around $20.00 a film or at least $15 on sale.

  16. Tino

    Why do you think any of us would be shocked or think your opinion is controversial??
    It’s just your opinion. Not shocking or controversial to me in any way. 🙂

    I only said that because I know most A&C fans hold Africa Screams in much higher regard than Jack & the Beanstalk. And when I say "much higher", I mean MUCH HIGHER. 🙂

  17. Randy Korstick

    I think we all do but with 27 other films plus lots of great extras I don't even count that. If you look at as 27 films instead of 28 it still comes out to around $5.00 a film. If they released them separately going by Shouts normal pricing they would be around $20.00 a film or at least $15 on sale.

    Exactly!

  18. John Sparks

    I have 5 prints of MEET FRANKENSTEIN (2 SD/3 BD) and getting another one is not in the cards. What I would buy in a second are all their other movies on BD.

    I know what you mean. Same with me. Multiple copies of that just to get the different sets of other titles I like.

  19. Randy Korstick

    I think we all do but with 27 other films plus lots of great extras I don't even count that. If you look at as 27 films instead of 28 it still comes out to around $5.00 a film. If they released them separately going by Shouts normal pricing they would be around $20.00 a film or at least $15 on sale.

    So true.

  20. I just got my shipping notice from Amazon. Mine will be delivered tomorrow. Looking forward to watching them in order. I will throw in the missing 8 films in order as well which is what I always do. Noose Hangs high and Dance with me Henry are on Blu Ray but the others are not. Hopefully WAC will release blus of the 3 MGM features and Abbot and Costello meet Captain Kidd.

  21. Randy Korstick

    I just got my shipping notice from Amazon. Mine will be delivered tomorrow.

    Mine too! It's a nice surprise because, until the shipping notice, they were predicting a Thursday delivery. I chalked it up to ordering it and then deciding I was crazy and didn't need it right away. I cancelled the order and then reversed myself just a few days ago (of COURSE I need it right away, what was I thinking?) since the price never increased.

  22. Got mine. Very nice set. The booklet and packaging mimics the trunk case DVD set. I watched the 1st film One Night in the Tropics. Definite picture improvement over the DVD. I noticed the soundtrack is a bit noisy in spots but that has always been the case. The audio on this one is Dolby Digital which surprised me and I was thinking the whole set was this way but it looks like the majority are in DTS-HD with a few in Dolby D if they have noisy audio. I sampled Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Cops. Great to see it in Widescreen it gives the film a better overall look as if it had a bigger budget. Its 1.85:1 instead of the intended 2.0:1 per Bob Furmanek's research but not a big deal just great to have it in widescreen.

  23. Well, I had some time to sample some of Volume One. Yes, they are vastly improved over the DVD sets. Still disappointed that Universal didn't have proper materials for ONE NIGHT IN THE TROPICS. They got the Universal logo on it, but the first credit still has Universal Presents blotted out and missing the Cast rollup, but other than that, it was more than okay.
    I wonder what happened to IN THE NAVY as it does look a bit shabby compared to the others, but much better than the DVD.
    The big surprise was in the credits of HOLD THAT GHOST. All my life, I noticed that "hair" bobbling around in the cartoon background plate during the first part of the credits. When they dissolve to the same background plate, it disappears, but this transfer they either digitally took out the hair or used a source before the hair got there. By the way, it is at the bottom left side of the opening 2 or 3 credits. So someone must have alerted Universal about this.
    Anyway, it will be a delight to view them all in order…even the very few I don't like that much. Thanks Shout! and Universal and all the A&C experts that makes this a definitive release.

  24. John Morgan

    The big surprise was in the credits of HOLD THAT GHOST. All my life, I noticed that "hair" bobbling around in the cartoon background plate during the first part of the credits. When they dissolve to the same background plate, it disappears, but this transfer they either digitally took out the hair or used a source before the hair got there. By the way, it is at the bottom left side of the opening 2 or 3 credits. So someone must have alerted Universal about this.

    Hold That Ghost was the first one I threw on just to see if the hair was there. I have seen it on the VHS and DVD. I was happy and surprised to see that it was gone. However, I’m saving my DVD for hair nostalgia.

  25. Bob Furmanek

    I hope that everyone enjoys our Castle Films supplement.

    Those original boxes are not easy to find, especially in pristine condition!

    View attachment 65223

    I haven't looked at the castle films feature yet. But it will bring back memories. I still have my castle films 10-12 minute silent versions of Pardon My Sarong, Meet the Keystone Kops and In the Foreign Legion. All purchased in 1977.

  26. Bob Furmanek

    You need to read this book with extensive details on the making of each film!

    Here are some reviews: https://www.amazon.com/product-revi…fferlistingpage_text?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

    As an exclusive to HTF, I still have some copies (it's long out of print) and will sell them at a fair price. Send me a message if you're interested.

    View attachment 65263

    This is THE definitive book on the boys’ films! I too would take Bob up on this fantastic offer if I didn’t already own the book.

    Gary “a must for every A&C fan” O.

  27. Robert Crawford

    I apologize if this question has already been answered. After buying this Blu-ray collection is there any reason to keep the prior DVDs including that giant DVD boxset?

    I haven't noticed anything from the DVD's that isn't included so there aren't any reasons I know of.

  28. Robert Crawford

    I apologize if this question has already been answered. After buying this Blu-ray collection is there any reason to keep the prior DVDs including that giant DVD boxset?

    Someone mentioned about a slight difference in the opening credits sequence in Hold That Ghost where the bristling hair on the animated character is missing. Can someone else verify that? It is also disappointing that the opening credits for One Night In The Tropics hasn't been changed back to the original title cards. I haven't bought the blu ray set as of yet, but I read that it has the same issue with that as the DVD set. The original title cards appear on the VHS edition which is still readily available.

  29. timk1041

    Someone mentioned about a slight difference in the opening credits sequence in Hold That Ghost where the bristling hair on the animated character is missing. Can someone else verify that? It is also disappointing that the opening credits for One Night In The Tropics hasn't been changed back to the original title cards. I haven't bought the blu ray set as of yet, but I read that it has the same issue with that as the DVD set. The original title cards appear on the VHS edition which is still readily available.

    I believe overall the blu ray should be worth getting, especially if the price drops some more soon. You may want to hold on to the DVD set just as a backup if you would like.

  30. timk1041

    Someone mentioned about a slight difference in the opening credits sequence in Hold That Ghost where the bristling hair on the animated character is missing. Can someone else verify that? It is also disappointing that the opening credits for One Night In The Tropics hasn't been changed back to the original title cards. I haven't bought the blu ray set as of yet, but I read that it has the same issue with that as the DVD set. The original title cards appear on the VHS edition which is still readily available.

    The hair on the opening credits of Hold That Ghost Blu-ray is certainly gone.

  31. ahollis

    The hair on the opening credits of Hold That Ghost Blu-ray is certainly gone.

    HOLD THAT GHOST is an outstanding blu-ray! It looks wonderful! If I had my druthers, I'd probably prefer that the hair remained since it's always been there but I can't quibble with the overall job they did on that title.

  32. Will Krupp

    HOLD THAT GHOST is an outstanding blu-ray! It looks wonderful! If I had my druthers, I'd probably prefer that the hair remained since it's always been there but I can't quibble with the overall job they did on that title.

    Hair today gone tomorrow 😀

  33. Will Krupp

    HOLD THAT GHOST is an outstanding blu-ray! It looks wonderful! If I had my druthers, I'd probably prefer that the hair remained since it's always been there but I can't quibble with the overall job they did on that title.

    I'm holding on to my DVD copy of Hold That Ghost just for the hair. Lol.

  34. ahollis

    I will only speculate to myself, but I’m really looking forward to the announcement.

    I would enjoy a huge price drop in the blu ray set. And I mean a huge drop in price. I haven't bought it yet. Still have the DVD set.

  35. timk1041

    I would enjoy a huge price drop in the blu ray set. And I mean a huge drop in price. I haven't bought it yet. Still have the DVD set.

    Well it’s from Shout, so I don’t see a huge price drop coming, they tend to keep the prices at their release level.

  36. Yeah Shout almost never has big price drops maybe one of those 2 hour black Friday deals from Amazon but that would be about it. This already had a big price drop for the preorder from $169.99 to $123.00. I expect the price to go back in price pretty soon.

  37. timk1041

    I would enjoy a huge price drop in the blu ray set. And I mean a huge drop in price. I haven't bought it yet. Still have the DVD set.

    Me Too ! Waiting for price drop on Amazon. Black Friday sale I hope. Plus my Reward Points.

  38. I'm really impressed by the packaging, which is compact and shelf-friendly for 28 films, especially compared to the Monty Python box which I received within the same week (not to mention Universal's own bulky trunk box for the dvd release) .

  39. Unlike the A&C starring vehicles, One Night in the Tropics is one of their films I almost never watch. I hadn't seen it in probably forty years and decided to give it a look tonight. It became VERY obvious why I have left it alone all this time: all the scheming machinations between the women to land the men of their choice are beyond tiresome, and the men are so weak and ineffectual that you just want to kick them in their behinds and tell them to grow some backbone.

    A&C save the whole shebang with their classic routines. I can see why the reisssue was trimmed to 69 minutes to get rid of those silly couples and put more of the focus on the boys.

  40. Matt Hough

    Unlike the A&C starring vehicles, One Night in the Tropics is one of their films I almost never watch. I hadn't seen it in probably forty years and decided to give it a look tonight. It became VERY obvious why I have left it alone all this time: all the scheming machinations between the women to land the men of their choice are beyond tiresome, and the men are so weak and ineffectual that you just want to kick them in their behinds and tell them to grow some backbone

    Heheheh. I'm not sure why but I've always had more affection for ONE NIGHT than most people do. I'm not sure if it's the clothes, the specifically 1940 "feel" of it, Peggy Moran, or Nancy "I hope you choke" Kelly but something about it just "works" for me. I always used to get thrilled every time it came up in rotation on WPIX back in the old days, but it was not a success by any means. In fact, Peggy Moran said that Bob Cummings referred to it as ONE NIGHT IN THE FLOPICS for the rest of his life and apparently she agreed with him (perhaps her step grandson, Kevin Koster, can tell us if that's true or not!)

  41. Will Krupp

    Heheheh. I'm not sure why but I've always had more affection for ONE NIGHT than most people do. I'm not sure if it's the clothes, the specifically 1940 "feel" of it, Peggy Moran, or Nancy "I hope you choke" Kelly but something about it just "works" for me. I always used to get thrilled every time it came up in rotation on WPIX back in the old days, but it was not a success by any means. In fact, Peggy Moran said that Bob Cummings referred to it as ONE NIGHT IN THE FLOPICS for the rest of his life and apparently she agreed with him (perhaps her step grandson, Kevin Koster, can tell us if that's true or not!)

    it’s because of the MUSTARD. Mustard on a hot dog is the best.

  42. I don't want this to come across as disrespectful because it really isn't, and I don't mean to stir the pot, but I thought that the gargantuan announcement would be "We're releasing Africa Screams on Blu-ray" as opposed to"save and help us pay for the restoration of Africa Screams"
    I don't consider asking for money for a restoration project a "gargantuan announcement" .. just my two cents worth 🙂
    That being said, I hope this project will be successful and if you double the amount you're asking for, let's get Jack and the Beanstalk on Blu-ray too !
    And yes I am a fan of Africa Screams !

  43. The announcement isn’t quite what I expected but it made sense when I thought about it.

    Maybe it would help to think of it as a preorder. For $25, you get the restored movie on DVD, or for $35, you get it on Blu-ray. Those are about the standard list prices for boutique releases, just without the discounting we’re used to. And we all know physical media isn’t selling a fraction of what it once was, so the idea of an independent company restoring it first and then hoping to recoup the money over time in a rapidly changing marketplace might not be as dependable a route as it used to be. And then, on top of that, the movie is public domain so once the new restoration is out there, it will be pirated and stolen and that will make it harder to sell legit copies.

    So I’m seeing this more as a preorder than a fundraiser, and a way for A&C enthusiasts to vote with our wallets to say this is a thing we want and put our money where our mouths are.

    I have such fond memories of this movie even though I can barely recall it. But I remember that my great-grandfather gave me his VHS copy when I was a wee one because I laughed so much watching it with him. I must’ve been five or six. I can barely remember his face, and the memory of his voice is gone, but I remember the green sticker on the VHS tape.

  44. I revisited Buck Privates tonight and had a sensational time with it. The boys were never better, the tunes were marvelous (and was glad the Andrews Sisters got Nick Castle to stage their numbers), and the movie was the perfect length.

  45. Rodney

    First, I immediately pledged for the blu-ray, and heartily support this endeavor.

    However, I think it should have its own thread, as it isn't really a part of Shout Factory's A&C Collection.

    Agree

  46. John Morgan

    Certainly in the DVD suitcase release, I thought IN THE NAVY was the worse looking of all the releases. Bad contrast, lack of sharpness, it looked like a dupe of a dupe of a dupe. I guess something happened to the negative that couldn't be fixed or the negative just went bad or was disposed of at some point. Frankly, I don't think we will ever see the quality and care on blu ray as we did on the Classic Monster Series Universal. I can only guess they cost a fortune to restore, fixing both sound and picture. Not to say very good fine grains and other sources have not been used for their other films of the period, but going from nitrate camera negative with 4k scans, and post production work to make them look as pristine as can be, I think are reserved for only a handful of their classics of the 30s and 40s.

    I just had a fresh viewing of IN THE NAVY (1941) from the 2014 Trunk DVD set, and I just don't see the poor quality. It honestly looks fine to my eyes, and I just recently updated my prescription. We'll just have to agree to disagree regarding this title!

    CHEERS! 🙂

  47. Tony Bensley

    I just had a fresh viewing of IN THE NAVY (1941) from the 2014 Trunk DVD set, and I just don't see the poor quality. It honestly looks fine to my eyes, and I just recently updated my prescription. We'll just have to agree to disagree regarding this title!

    CHEERS! 🙂

    I didn't remember it being bad either. I watched the blu ray about 3 weeks ago and thought it look fine too. On par with Buck Privates and Hold that Ghost.

  48. Randy Korstick

    I didn't remember it being bad either. I watched the blu ray about 3 weeks ago and thought it look fine too. On par with Buck Privates and Hold that Ghost.

    I plan to start watching the set from the beginning in a another week or so. I'll share my thoughts then.

    Gary "just thankful we have this release" O.

  49. Gary OS

    I plan to start watching the set from the beginning in a another week or so. I'll share my thoughts then.

    Gary "just thankful we have this release" O.

    I’m about halfway through watching the bluray of “In The Navy” and so far it looks beautiful. Sharp, great contrast and black levels. Good audio too.

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