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Be aware that this series of words reviews older discs (but not that old) replacing original HD product. They’re being compared to newly produced discs, and rated accordingly.

The Untouchables seems to be one of those love it or hate it films.

I’ve always liked it.

Great cast. Beautifully shot by Stephen Burum. A terrific score by Ennio Morricone. Written by David Mamet.

I saw it in 35mm in 1987, and it was a class act.

The HD disc was a bit less than that.

Updating from the HD to the latest and greatest Blu-ray hasn’t helped a great deal. The 2017 variant seems to have proper color and densities, and seated at a reasonable distance, it appears fine.

The problem comes around when you get a bit closer, and the image falls apart.

Swirling magnetic digital grain create an unpleasant experience. I was hopeful that the 2017 release would be a bit better, but no luck.

This is a quality film from Brian De Palma that deserves a new scan and an upgrade.

Image – 2.5


Audio – 4 (Dolby stereo)

Pass / Fail – Fail

Upgrade from DVD – Yes

RAH
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Published by

Robert Harris

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Todd Erwin

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Saw this in 70mm and thought it was great.

Still sad to hear Paramount is recycling that problematic transfer.
 

Neil S. Bulk

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This movie made quite a mark on me in 1987. My dad loved the TV series and took me to the theater to see it opening weekend. I was probably too young, but I loved it. We saw it twice that weekend (once in 35mm and once in 70mm), two more times that summer and when a 70mm print played at the AMMI in New York in 2001, my dad and I drove up to see it.

What made that initial screening so memorable was the projection booth for the AMC Olde City Cinema was accessible via the parking garage, so we walked right past it and they had the door open. They let us in, showed us around and gave me a few trims from the film. I had 70mm frames of Mark Harmon from the "Summer School" trailer and some other random 35mm bits. They also gave me a small "Untouchables" one sheet. There was a note on the wall from De Palma mentioning the first changeover cue was difficult to see (it's when Capone is in bed reading the newspaper).

I've since seen it several times in 35mm and 70mm (sometimes with a "Fatal Attraction" trailer still attached to the print) and I'm hopeful that Paramount issues this on 4K UHD with Dolby Vision sooner rather than later. 2022 is the 35th anniversary, so this year would be ideal.
 

Robert Crawford

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I've since seen it several times in 35mm and 70mm (sometimes with a "Fatal Attraction" trailer still attached to the print) and I'm hopeful that Paramount issues this on 4K UHD with Dolby Vision sooner rather than later. 2022 is the 35th anniversary, so this year would be ideal.
That's what I'm hoping Paramount does with this title.
 

Robin9

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I've never upgraded from the DVD which I always thought was pretty good.
 

Neil S. Bulk

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And when they do reissue this can they do something about the terrible, revised cover art. I understand that you cannot have guns pointed at you anymore in motion picture marketing, but the terrible Photoshopped badge has got to go.

71JCBZE9t+S._SL1500_.jpg
 

ManW_TheUncool

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Yeah, here's hoping Paramount finally gets back to this one w/ a much better, fresh new scan (and proper lossless audio) as well...

_Man_
 

Josh Steinberg

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And when they do reissue this can they do something about the terrible, revised cover art. I understand that you cannot have guns pointed at you anymore in motion picture marketing, but the terrible Photoshopped badge has got to go.

View attachment 123984

The nice thing about running a Plex server (if you can live with the side effect of being a freaking crazy person to go through the effort in the first place) is that you can choose what poster art displays for each film. I’ve went in and manually changed just about everything to the original theatrical one sheets.
 

lark144

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mark gross
I also really liked this film when it opened. I saw it opening weekend at the Loew's 84th Street. I don't recall whether it was a 70mm blow-up or 35mm, but I do remember hearing those reverberating tones of the Morricone score over the credits and thinking this was going to be something special. And it was.

I never bought the DVD, because I wanted that indescribable filmic quality that I first saw in a theatre, especially those reds and yellows during the scenes with Al Capone.

I never bought the Blu-Ray either, because the reviews more or less matched Mr. Harris' description.

And yes, like others in this thread, I hope Paramount releases a stunning Blu-Ray from the OCN very soon.
 

Charles Smith

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I saw it in its opening week at the Dome, don't remember if 35mm or 70mm but I'd guess the latter. Would love a great new transfer.
 

JoshZ

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My recollection is that the HD DVD had better encoding quality than the Blu-ray. I haven't watched either in years, though (and can't even recall the last time I tried to use the HD DVD player). This is definitely a title that could be served well with a fresh remaster for 4K HDR.

Paramount has successfully fixed up some other titles they made of mess of on Blu-ray (like M:I-2 and Patriot Games). This deserves to be escalated on the pipeline.
 

JoeDoakes

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Be aware that this series of words reviews older discs (but not that old) replacing original HD product. They're being compared to newly produced discs, and rated accordingly.

The Untouchables seems to be one of those love it or hate it films.
Who hated it? Don't recall anyone hating it. Perhaps you were thinking of Dances with Wolves or Field of Dreams. I hated those.
 

Robert Harris

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Who hated it? Don't recall anyone hating it. Perhaps you were thinking of Dances with Wolves or Field of Dreams. I hated those.
One example, and a rare time we disagreed:

 

JoshZ

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Ebert was definitely an outlier in that opinion. The movie was otherwise well reviewed, a big office hit, and won Connery an Oscar despite playing a supposedly Irish character with a clearly Scottish accent. :)
 

Robert Harris

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Ebert was definitely an outlier in that opinion. The movie was otherwise well reviewed, a big office hit, and won Connery an Oscar despite playing a supposedly Irish character with a clearly Scottish accent. :)
Most Americans are non-cognizant of accents. There were many people who thought Deliverance took place outside of Philly. Some were further confused by the foliage along the Schuylkill.

So, Irish vs Scottish?

No brainer.

Just don‘t confuse the libation with the people.
 

Nelson Au

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I saw this once on TV and while it is a very good film, I couldn’t revisit it because it was so intense in some of the murders. I think I have the laserdisc so must have seen it uncut on that, but never got the later releases. i seem to recall especially the death of the Charles Martin Smith character and of course Sean Connery’s character. I’ve seen plenty of action films with lots of violence. But this one was tougher.

This thread does have me curious to revisit the film. The recall the climatic shoot-out at the train station is the source is very well done and was spoofed.
 

Sam Favate

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The Untouchables seems to be one of those love it or hate it films.

In the nearly 35 years since the movie came out, I have never met anyone who hated it. I have a friend who is a bigger movie snob than I am and even he said it was "a perfect movie." To say that a film is either a "love it or hate it" suggests reaction is pretty divided. While the movie might have its detractors, I don't think it's evenly divided.

I've been awaiting this one on 4k disc. Maybe for this year's anniversary?