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Blu-ray Review A Few Words About A few words about…™ Number Seventeen – in Blu-ray (1 Viewer)

Robert Harris

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Kino has been releasing many important early films this year, and the arrival of Hitchcock's Number Seventeen and Rich and Strange are major additions for those who study the Master of Suspense and his growth in cinema.

For older productions, especially those perceived to still be in the public domain - the laws changed c. 1998 - one should make an effort to purchase legitimate, highest quality examples of these early works.

Be aware, and this is important, that some major vendors are apparently still not following the copyright law, and are selling bootlegs of titles not legitimately in distribution, or competing with those who are releasing legally acquired and licensed quality goods and paying royalties.

Unfortunately, vendors that should be on your Hitchcock questionable list for this practice are, among others...

Amazon
Barnes and Noble
Best Buy
Deep Discount

Below, is a list of legitimate domestic DVD and Blu-ray releases.


1925
The Pleasure Garden - Bavaria - public domain

1926
The Mountain Eagle - Gainsborough - Not known to survive

1927
When Boys Leave Home (Downhill) - Gainsborough
Easy Virtue - Gainsborough
The Lodger - Gainsborough - Criterion (Blu-ray)
The Ring - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1928
The Farmer's Wife - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
Champagne - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1929
Blackmail - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
The Manxman - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
Juno and the Paycock - BIP

1930
Murder - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1931
The Skin Game - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
East of Shanghai (Rich and Strange) - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray) - coming in January

1932
Number 17 - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1934
The Man Who Knew Too Much - Gaumont - Criterion (Blu-ray)
Strauss' Great Waltz - Gaumont

1935
The 39 Steps - Gaumont - Criterion (Blu-ray)

1936
Secret Agent - Gaumont -
Sabotage - Gaumont - MGM (DVD)

1937
Young and Innocent Gaumont - MGM (DVD)

1938
The Lady Vanishes - Gainsborough - Criterion (Blu-ray)

1939
Jamaica Inn - Renown - Cohen (Blu-ray)

Especially for an almost 90 year-old film, Kino's new Blu-ray of Number Seventeen - thanks to the work of the BFI - is astonishingly good.

Audio, on the other hand - acknowledging that it's very early technology, is occasionally difficult to understand, but give it your attention and you'll have no problems.

Short at 63 minutes, extremely low-budget, and only using a couple of sets and sequences aboard a moving train - it depends upon models and quite a bit of under-crank camera to work. But it does, allowing us to see a future master-craftsman honing his tools.

Essential viewing for anyone appreciates the work of Sir Alfred.

Image – 5

Audio – 3.25

Pass / Fail – Pass

Recommended

RAH
 
Last edited:

Paul Penna

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That's where subtitles come in handy!
The trouble with subtitles, these days at least, is that they're not taken from scripts or any other authenticated sources, but are present-day transcriptions by someone listening to the video soundtrack. Often these are people who are unfamiliar with proper names of people and places, with words and phrases (and even pronunciations) no longer common, and in the case of British films, oceans of cultural references and differences in word usage and pronunciations. Quality varies, of course, but I've seen howlers in releases from major and respected sources. In the worst case - and I've seen many instances - the entire meaning of a line of dialog is changed, sometimes by 180 degrees. Obviously you can't expect linguistic experts and historians to be doing these subtitles, but you have to be aware of the limitations of them. Luckily, my hearing is still good, but I use subtitles as an assist with British dialects and if there's contemporary-style non-enunciated or machine-gun-rapid line delivery involved.
 

Thomas T

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Sep 30, 2001
Messages
8,296
The trouble with subtitles, these days at least, is that they're not taken from scripts or any other authenticated sources, but are present-day transcriptions by someone listening to the video soundtrack. Often these are people who are unfamiliar with proper names of people and places, with words and phrases (and even pronunciations) no longer common, and in the case of British films, oceans of cultural references and differences in word usage and pronunciations. Quality varies, of course, but I've seen howlers in releases from major and respected sources. In the worst case - and I've seen many instances - the entire meaning of a line of dialog is changed, sometimes by 180 degrees. Obviously you can't expect linguistic experts and historians to be doing these subtitles, but you have to be aware of the limitations of them. Luckily, my hearing is still good, but I use subtitles as an assist with British dialects and if there's contemporary-style non-enunciated or machine-gun-rapid line delivery involved.
It's often much worse if you don't speak the language! I had a friend who lived in Spain when Carnal Knowledge (1971) was released. In the film, Jack Nicholson said something along the lines of "She's a great piece of ass!" but the Spanish subtitles read, "She's so precious!" :lol:
 

bujaki

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It's often much worse if you don't speak the language! I had a friend who lived in Spain when Carnal Knowledge (1971) was released. In the film, Jack Nicholson said something along the lines of "She's a great piece of ass!" but the Spanish subtitles read, "She's so precious!" :lol:
That was probably due to Franco's regime's extreme censorship.
 

lark144

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mark gross
That was probably due to Franco's regime's extreme censorship.
It happened here as well. I'll never forget when I saw "Le petit theatre de Jean Renoir" at MOMA in the early 70's during the RAI series, and in one of the episodes, an elderly man asks a very young maid what she wants to be when she grows up, and she responds, "Je veux etre une courtsaine", which means "I want to be a courtesan", which was translated as "I want to be a lady".
 

bujaki

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It happened here as well. I'll never forget when I saw "Le petit theatre de Jean Renoir" at MOMA in the early 70's during the RAI series, and in one of the episodes, an elderly man asks a very young maid what she wants to be when she grows up, and she responds, "Je veux etre une courtsaine", which means "I want to be a courtesan", which was translated as "I want to be a lady".
All courtesans should be ladies of taste, culture and refinement.
Otherwise, they're just ladies of the pavement.
 
Last edited:

B-ROLL

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That was probably due to Franco's regime's extreme censorship.
At last report Generalissimo Francisco Franco is ... still dead ...

1637046474491.jpeg
:cool: ...;)
 

Brent Reid

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Kino has been releasing many important early films this year, and the arrival of Hitchcock's Number Seventeen and Rich and Strange are major additions for those who study the Master of Suspense and his growth in cinema.

For older productions, especially those perceived to still be in the public domain - the laws changed c. 1998 - one should make an effort to purchase legitimate, highest quality examples of these early works.

Be aware, and this is important, that some major vendors are apparently still not following the copyright law, and are selling bootlegs of titles not legitimately in distribution, or competing with those who are releasing legally acquired and licensed quality goods and paying royalties.

Unfortunately, vendors that should be on your Hitchcock questionable list for this practice are, among others...

Amazon
Barnes and Noble
Best Buy
Deep Discount

Below, is a list of legitimate domestic DVD and Blu-ray releases.


1925
The Pleasure Garden - Bavaria - public domain

1926
The Mountain Eagle - Gainsborough - Not known to survive

1927
When Boys Leave Home - Gainsborough
Easy Virtue - Gainsborough
The Lodger - Gainsborough - Criterion (Blu-ray)
The Ring - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1928
The Farmer's Wife - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
Champagne - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1929
Blackmail - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
The Manxman - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
Juno and the Paycock - BIP

1930
Murder - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1931
The Skin Game - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
East of Shanghai (Rich and Strange) - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray) - coming in January

1932
Number 17 - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1934
The Man Who Knew Too Much - Gaumont - Criterion (Blu-ray)
Strauss' Great Waltz - Gaumont

1935
The 39 Steps - Gaumont - Criterion (Blu-ray)

1936
Secret Agent - Gaumont -
Sabotage - Gaumont - MGM (DVD)

1937
Young and Innocent Gaumont - MGM (DVD)

1938
The Lady Vanishes - Gainsborough - Criterion (Blu-ray)

1939
Jamaica Inn - Renown - Cohen (Blu-ray)

Especially for an almost 90 year-old film, Kino's new Blu-ray of Number Seventeen - thanks to the work of the BFI - is astonishingly good.

Audio, on the other hand - acknowledging that it's very early technology, is occasionally difficult to understand, but give it your attention and you'll have no problems.

Short at 63 minutes, extremely low-budget, and only using a couple of sets and sequences aboard a moving train - it depends upon models and quite a bit of under-crank camera to work. But it does, allowing us to see a future master-craftsman honing his tools.

Essential viewing for anyone appreciates the work of Sir Alfred.

Image – 5

Audio – 3.25

Pass / Fail – Pass

Recommended

RAH
Kudos for continuing to highlight the widespread piracy of Hitchcock's fully copyrighted British films but note The Pleasure Garden is not in the public domain. When it finally becomes so, at the end of this year, note too it only applies in the US and to silent copies of the two unrestored prints currently in circulation as bootlegs.
 

Robert Harris

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Robert Harris
Kudos for continuing to highlight the widespread piracy of Hitchcock's fully copyrighted British films but note The Pleasure Garden is not in the public domain. When it finally becomes so, at the end of this year, note too it only applies in the US and to silent copies of the two unrestored prints currently in circulation as bootlegs.
Copyright law, when it comes to European productions becomes more than a bit complex. And very interesting.
 

Holmesian

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Sep 7, 2020
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Matt
I've always enjoyed Number Seventeen and found it very atmospheric. Glad to hear RAH approves, and I must compliment his very thorough list of companies + releases.

That's where subtitles come in handy!
Tangentially, I would add that there is a pretty good, though obscure, Region 2 DVD release of Secret Agent from a company called Carlton (2003, licensed by Gaumont) that has subtitles. I picked it up a few years back and am glad I did...the film seems to have gotten lost in the muddled race to release Hitchcock's early films on Blu-ray (unless I'm missing something, it doesn't seem forthcoming anytime soon). Neither was there ever any licensed Region 1 DVD, so far as I know.
 

Robert Harris

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Messages
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Robert Harris
I've always enjoyed Number Seventeen and found it very atmospheric. Glad to hear RAH approves, and I must compliment his very thorough list of companies + releases.


Tangentially, I would add that there is a pretty good, though obscure, Region 2 DVD release of Secret Agent from a company called Carlton (2003, licensed by Gaumont) that has subtitles. I picked it up a few years back and am glad I did...the film seems to have gotten lost in the muddled race to release Hitchcock's early films on Blu-ray (unless I'm missing something, it doesn't seem forthcoming anytime soon). Neither was there ever any licensed Region 1 DVD, so far as I know.
It’s a good film. I seem to recall a Criterion laserdisc.
 

Suzanne.S

Second Unit
Joined
Jul 23, 2002
Messages
257
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St. Louis, MO
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When Boys Leave Home (1927) is more commonly known as Downhill. It is available on the Criterion Blu-ray and on the French release of Waltzes from Vienna (1934).
 

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