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Blu-ray Review 3D A Few Words About A few words about…™ Prison Girls – in Blu-ray & 3D (1 Viewer)

Robert Harris

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Prison Girls 3D, directed by Tom DeSimone, who goes by more aliases than most witness protection candidates, would seem to have a couple of potential uses.

1. As a window to 1972 San Francisco, and hair styles and clothing of the period - think bell bottoms and muttonchops

2. For collectors of 3D in any form - good, bad or indifferent

As a film, Prison Girls falls into the bad category. Shot poorly on 16mm with a 3D rig, and distributed as a 35mm dupe via over/under 3D. Lots of post-sync dialogue.

The imagery is soft, even by 16mm standards, the film is poorly shot, with only sparing use of more important 3D attributes. It seems to be all practical locations - offices, homes, a shower room, with bars placed in the foreground.

Released in November of 1972, there was a wonderful article in Esquire, which I always presumed had a satirical bent - but possibly not:

"Prison Girls, a new 3D release from AIP, the home of Roger Corman, has little going for it, but it does have a way with audiences. Interviewing those exiting gave us some interesting information. Attendees were mostly male, with a few of couples mixed in.

Exit polls showed two disparate takes on the film. While all of those attending felt that it was a waste of their price of admission, there seemed to be two very different positions as to content, and it seemed to come down those who were bottle fed, as opposed to breast fed.

Results showed that while those bottle fed found occasional titilating aspects, those breast fed were either repulsed by giant mammaries projecting from the screen in 3D, or felt a need to visit the concession stand."


3D films run the gamut of quality. Some are superbly crafted with stellar 3D, while others simply exist. This is one of the latter.

On the positive side, while the images have an overall slightly faded appearance, 3-D Film Archive has eked out every bit of quality that exists in the elements, and have done a superb job of registering the eyes.

3D fans should be pleased to tick one more silver era film off their list, thanks to Kino and 3-D Film Archive. Note that the image quality rated here as 2 does not reference the work put into the project, but merely the quality of the extant elements.

For fans, it's still receiving a passing grade based upon the attempt at quality. This is a case of "it is what it is." I doubt that the image contains DVD quality resolution. Those who may feel that I'm against 3D films in general would be incorrect, as (I'll repeat) there are some wonderful productions. What I'm against is bad films. Think all large format films are worth viewing?

Think again!

Love to see this followed up with Hondo!

Image – 2

Audio – 4 (Monaural)

Pass / Fail – Pass

Plays nicely with projectors - No - best to view on a flat panel

Worth your attention - 1

Slipcover rating - 1

RAH


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Dick

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How did HONDO happen suddenly turn up in your post, sir? You keeping secrets? :emoji_zipper_mouth:
 

Robert Harris

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I agree with you. Saw it in 3D at the Egyptian. Should be available. The DCP exists. Paramount declined to release it.
I believe it was formatted in a non-standard tech. Don’t recall specifics. Mr. F would know.
 

Peter Apruzzese

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As far as I know, Hondo's restoration was done to standard 3-D specifications. I know the DCP I saw at the Museum of Modern Art played perfectly in their Real-D system. One story I heard behind its non-appearance on home video is that Paramount was spooked by complaints of crosstalk and ghosting (which were display errors and not 3-D mistakes) on the Blu-ray of "Hugo" and chose not to license the 3-D version of Hondo because of that.
 

Josh Steinberg

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One story I heard behind its non-appearance on home video is that Paramount was spooked by complaints of crosstalk and ghosting (which were display errors and not 3-D mistakes) on the Blu-ray of "Hugo" and chose not to license the 3-D version of Hondo because of that.

I’ve heard a version of the same as well.

Paramount doesn’t own Hondo outright; they licensed the home video rights to the film from the Wayne estate. The Wayne estate has a fine 3D DCP of the film, but Paramount wasn’t interested in releasing it in 3D. However, since Paramount currently has the home video rights, the Wayne estate can’t license the 3D home video rights to someone else. Paramount’s contract with the Wayne estate doesn’t allow Paramount to sublicense the title to anyone, so Paramount can’t farm a 3D release out to a boutique label either.
 

Robert Harris

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I’ve heard a version of the same as well.

Paramount doesn’t own Hondo outright; they licensed the home video rights to the film from the Wayne estate. The Wayne estate has a fine 3D DCP of the film, but Paramount wasn’t interested in releasing it in 3D. However, since Paramount currently has the home video rights, the Wayne estate can’t license the 3D home video rights to someone else. Paramount’s contract with the Wayne estate doesn’t allow Paramount to sublicense the title to anyone, so Paramount can’t farm a 3D release out to a boutique label either.
It’s a pity, as Hondo is a superb main stream 3D production. Not a collector of all things 3D, but would love to have that one.
 

Peter Apruzzese

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For those in the vicinity, HONDO is playing in 3-D in NYC at the Film Forum on August 14.
 

Charles Smith

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I remember that MoMA showing. It was gorgeous. A classic golden age 3-D movie that's ready to go ... that we can't have. :)

Am I right that there's one curious flat shot in it, in which the 3-D somehow fell through the cracks? (I don't remember the story on that, but obviously it doesn't detract from the rest of the production which is wonderful.)
 

Bob Cashill

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It's terrible but there is that hilarious group sex scene where one of the male participants pulls out a stuffed pheasant to show to his bedmates, wagging its tail feathers at the camera. Quite an arcane mating ritual, that.
 

Josh Steinberg

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I remember that MoMA showing. It was gorgeous. A classic golden age 3-D movie that's ready to go ... that we can't have. :)

Am I right that there's one curious flat shot in it, in which the 3-D somehow fell through the cracks? (I don't remember the story on that, but obviously it doesn't detract from the rest of the production which is wonderful.)

Yes if memory serves the 3D rig malfunctioned on location so they had to grab a couple shots flat or not get them at all.
 

StephenDH

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It's terrible but there is that hilarious group sex scene where one of the male participants pulls out a stuffed pheasant to show to his bedmates, wagging its tail feathers at the camera. Quite an arcane mating ritual, that.
I must have missed that in "Hondo".
 

Robert Harris

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Duly noted that during the prison shower sequence and others, it became obvious that the prisoners are permitted to sunbathe in bikinis.

Nice prison!
 

bujaki

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Duly noted that during the prison shower sequence and others, it became obvious that the prisoners are permitted to sunbathe in bikinis.

Nice prison!
Stanwyck went to a swank prison in, I believe, Ladies They Talk About. Bikinis had not yet been designed.
 

Dennis Gallagher

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I’ve heard a version of the same as well.

Paramount doesn’t own Hondo outright; they licensed the home video rights to the film from the Wayne estate. The Wayne estate has a fine 3D DCP of the film, but Paramount wasn’t interested in releasing it in 3D. However, since Paramount currently has the home video rights, the Wayne estate can’t license the 3D home video rights to someone else. Paramount’s contract with the Wayne estate doesn’t allow Paramount to sublicense the title to anyone, so Paramount can’t farm a 3D release out to a boutique label either.
Maybe the Wayne estate will think differently once they see the results of the 3-D Film Archives efforts with Martin and Lewis' "Money From Home" - which they're working on from 4K scans of 72 reels of 3-D negative provided by the Paramount Film Archive (hardly the sub-optimal materials used for "Prison Girls"); this one analogous to the combined efforts of Warner Motion Picture Imaging department and Dave Strohmaier and company for Warner Archives' release of "The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm".
 
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