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A Few Words About A few words about...™ Notorious - in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Dec 23, 2018.

  1. Message #1 of 22 Dec 23, 2018
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 26, 2018
    Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    Quintessential Hitchcock

    Selznick

    Cary Grant

    Ingrid Bergman

    Claude Rains

    Finally in a gorgeous Blu-ray presentation

    From Criterion, with a cornucopia of extras

    No need to give this one a great deal of thought

    Belongs in every serious collection

    Image - 5

    Audio - 5

    Pass / Fail - Pass

    Upgrade from earlier Blu-ray - A necessity

    Very Highly Recommended

    RAH

     
  2. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Cool, an early review!

    Back in the bad old days of laserdisc, when I was first discovering a lot of Hitchcock titles, I was shopping at The Laserdisc Exchange, a small indie shop that sold laserdiscs new and used. I happen to be searching the bins and saw a guy selling back his Criterion laserdisc of Notorius. I’d never seen it before and I was discovering Cary Grant titles too so I grabbed it. Wow, that was about 19 years.

    Since then, I’ve collected every U.S. home video release, including the Criterion DVD, so very much looking forward to this.
     
  3. Robin9

    Robin9 Producer

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    Hey! Many thanks. "Upgrade from earlier Blu-ray - A necessity" That was what I wanted to know!
     
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  4. lark144

    lark144 Supporting Actor

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    The good Dr. over at the other site was a bissela blase about this Blu-Ray, so I'm pleased to hear this earns a prominent place in RAH's Hall of Fame. I first saw NOTORIOUS at MOMA, probably in the early 70's. Have no idea if it was a nitrate print, but it was possibly the most gorgeous black & white film I have ever seen, with such rich blacks and greys that the only comparison I can make is to a Mocha Cake from Linz, Austria; rich, delectable and life transforming. Like many collectors on this forum, I have bought successive iterations of NOTORIOUS searching in vain for those glorious textures I first saw at MOMA so many decades ago. I look forward to experiencing the new Criterion, and thank Mr. Harris for his recommendation.
     
  5. Robin9

    Robin9 Producer

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    I too once saw a really good print which is why I have never yet been satisfied with any disc version of Notorious.
     
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  6. RICK BOND

    RICK BOND Stunt Coordinator

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    January 15th ! Can't wait. Great movie, Great actors. Today, the movies they make I would not see for Free.
     
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  7. Message #7 of 22 Dec 24, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2018
    Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    Keep in mind that the entire OCN does not survive. Some footage from a pair of fine grains. Also, before comments begin, there are rear screen shots which are quite noticeable, and of the era.
     
  8. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
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    Yes, you find those rear screen projections throughout the entirety of Hitchcock, and they aren't often well disguised. It's part of his oeuvre.
     
  9. haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

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    The good doctor being blasé about this made me go purchase it immediately.
     
  10. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    For all your disdain about that reviewer, you sure publicize his reviews quite often here.;)
     
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  11. haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

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    Actually, someone above me in this thread did - I just chimed in :)
     
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  12. lark144

    lark144 Supporting Actor

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    Well, I started it, because the review SEEMED fairly negative, though he actually said what RAH said, that the original negative is missing, and therefore it can't be as perfectly resolved as it might have been, but within those parameters, it's close to perfect as it can be, and head and shoulders above all other issues. But you have to read what he wrote very carefully and pull that out from the mass of mostly negative verbiage. However, I must say that his little essay on THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS was about as cogent and profound a piece of criticism on Welles' film that I've read, and I recommend it highly.
     
  13. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Verbiage is one thing, but he finished his review with the following: "Highly Recommended" which is the same conclusion for "The Magnificent Ambersons".
     
  14. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    For clarity, parts of the OCN are no longer extant.
     
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  15. haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

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    For real clarity, think back to the days of old, when transfers rarely came from any OCN. Then think of what we get today, for the most part. We live in incredible times for movie enthusiasts. Some negatives are lost, some are partially lost or damaged, but if there are good other elements the results should be just fine. I never even understand the need to point out rear projection - it is what it is and it's never going to be anything else, same with opticals. I can't wait to get this - I'm sure I'll have nothing to nitpick and that I'll say: Highly recommended. It's one of the great movies.
     
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  16. rsmithjr

    rsmithjr Screenwriter

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    Depends on the portion of his work you are referencing. In the 50s, much of the work was photographed in VistaVision and generally at Paramount, and the process photography is excellent in these films.
     
  17. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
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    Generally excellent but not always; for example, the scene in the marketplace in The Man Who Knew Too Much as Stewart and Day are watching the acrobats and Hitch does his cameo. That's quite poor and very obvious.
     
  18. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor
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    Notorious isn't just essential Hitchcock, it's everything you could ask for in a classic film. It's the sort of film I'd show to someone who "doesn't like old movies" or "doesn't like black and white" because it's just as fresh as it was then.

    This was the very first Criterion DVD I ever purchased way back in 2001 when I had a weekend job in high school, so I'm looking forward to upgrading again. It'll be the fourth time I've owned it as I also had the MGM Hitchcock set (with the other three Selznicks, Lifeboat, and three of his British films) and MGM's Blu-ray. That Blu-ray is actually quite nice - clearly off a gorgeous film element, but limited by being an older transfer with less cleanup.
     
  19. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    A side note, when I watched the last blu ray on a then new 65” plasma, I had upgraded from a 50” and I never noticed all that stuff going on in the titles. There was small things moving around, and I realized this is a shot of Miami and that was smoke from a building.
     
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  20. Spencer Draper

    Spencer Draper Stunt Coordinator

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    Excellent news.
    The old Criterion was also my first CC DVD purchase. I had to save up forever in school to afford it and replace my worn VHS copy. I have the MGM version but really disliked what their work resulted in on the titles previously issued by others, particularly NOTORIOUS which I felt was far better on the Criterion DVD. Since then I even went back and picked up the CAV Criterion version which looks especially good for Laserdisc.
     
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