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Double Feature/Franchise collections: Are A/V upgrades common in these? (1 Viewer)

Nick Martin

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I've seen two instances where a bundled and discounted release of a film and its sequels actually improved on either the audio, video or both and since I don't have very many of these, I wondered how common these were, because it's interesting that the studios put a bit more effort into doing that.

The two examples I've seen of this are:

48 Hrs./Another 48 Hrs.

I don't know about the sequel, but the original 48 Hrs. disc was non-anamorphic and this double feature is anamorphic for both films.


Tremors Attack Pack

Tremors was anamorphic and had a significantly cleaned up image (either that or the anamorphic enhancement really was a big step up from zooming it to fit my screen) , and also featured a remixed 5.1 track. All of which the original 1998 collector's edition was lacking. It also retained all of the extras from that collector's edition.

Seems odd that such effort went into improving a DVD for a bargain collection, but what to I know? Any other examples of this or is it rare?
 

GuruAskew

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Before Universal put the Darkman collection out the 3 DVDs were a mixed bag. The first one was anamorphic but it was still from around '98 or so and there was a lot of room for improvement and the second one was non-anamorphic (probably the laserdisc transfer).

When the third film was finally released to DVD years after the first two it was actually pretty good in terms of picture quality, it was an anamorphic transfer that looked better than the other two. Unfortunately the DVD literally had no disc art, nor did it have any menus at all. You just put it in and it played.

When Universal re-released the trilogy they rectified the big problems. The "Darkman III" disc was the same disc as before. This time it had disc art but there was still no menus. I could live with that because the film presentation itself was still about as good as you could expect out of a low-bydget mid-90's direct-to-video sequel.

On the other hand, Universal did master a completely new disc for the first two films. Sure, they're now sharing a single-sided disc but both of them look significantly better than their predecessors. "Darkman II" was actually anamorphic (unlike the individual release) and "Darkman" had a brand-new anamorphic transfer that blows the old one away.

I think most of these double feature-type releases are just existing discs thrown into small packaging at a low price-point in an effort to be impulse buys but in the case of the "Darkman" set it's actually a significant upgrade on the 2 films in the trilogy that truly needed it.
 

Nick Martin

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Then the Tremors Attack Pack shared the same benefits as Darkman, both Universal titles. Nice.

Of course, since the disc containing the third and fourth films in the series was double-sided and not surprisingly defective, that's not so nice.

I haven't seen the Darkman films in years. I really enjoyed them, even saw the first one in theaters when I technically was too young to - I was 9 years old when it came out in 1990. I think I had read something about that set being double-sided and that scared me away. The Tremors set was pretty cheap so I figured what the heck and got burned after all.
 

GuruAskew

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The "Darkman" sequels really aren't in the same league as the first one, the only reason I even had the previous single editions was because of the DDD sale where they were like each less than $4. I had never seen them then and buying them through DDD wasn't much more expensive than renting them so I rolled the dice. When the re-release was announced I was really only interested in the first film and I viewed the inclusion of the sequels as a bonus. Even if you never watch them the upgrade to the first film is worth the price of the trilogy set alone, but it was cool of them to give the II a new anamorphic transfer.

As for using flippers, the "Darkman" set certainly doesn't. The first two films are on the first disc and since the only extras are trailers (there were some production notes on the old discs that weren't carried over but no actual video content was lost) there's plenty of room since they're both in the 90-minute range and like I said, the third disc is the same as the individual one except for the disc art.
 

JohnMor

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Another improvement was the Doris Day and Rock Hudson Comedy Collection, which is part of The Franchise Collection. Improved audio/video, most noticeable on "Pillow Talk." I thought it was odd that such an inexpensive set would have better a/v.

Also, the Clint Eastwood Western Colection had an improved, and anamorphic, "High Plains Drifter." But I thought "Two Mules For Sister Sara" looked a little worse than it's older single-disc version. The color on the set version was off.

I gotta say that Universal is currently doing some great transfers AND keep the cost of the dic(s) down. Which is great to see.
 

Bob Graham

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I remember hearing that the transfers on JEAN DE FLORETTE and MANNON OF THE SPRING were greatly improved on the MGM Double Feature disc. Can anyone confirm?
 

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