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Robert Crawford

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However, there are a few shots that are blurry and out of focus. I take it this is something inherent in the original print?
It's inherent to the original film elements used by George Stevens and how he filmed the movie. It's the best we'll ever see with this particular movie. If you watched the Blu-ray or seen the movie on DVD or TV, the 4K disc improvements would be much more recognizable to you.
 

dpippel

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What bothers me is how inconsistent the 4k looks. When it's good, it's REALLY good.

However, there are a few shots that are blurry and out of focus. I take it this is something inherent in the original print?

Ron - Yes, these are optical dissolves that are baked into the source elements. This is as good as Giant will ever look. Robert Harris explains:

 

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Thanks, everyone.

Robert, I think I read that there was something about this film that upset you? I take it that it had something to do with the story?

What specifically was it? I'm about halfway through it.
 

Ronald Epstein

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Finally finished watching GIANT this morning.

What an epic film!

Not the story I thought it would be. I had already gone in with a predetermined storyline in my head that it would be a cookie-cutter film where Jett would steal Leslie away from Bick Benedict. Turned out to be something completely different.

I really thought this was a great film, though I kind of felt it was bloated in some areas and somehow fizzled out too soon with the final act going somewhere else completely. However, in its 3-hour 21-minute length, it's mostly impressive and I couldn't help but feel I was watching one of the cinematic greats.

Great to see a young Dennis Hopper and Earl Holliman. I would guess that Holliman is one of the only major cast members still alive?

It's a real shame about the condition of the elements. There are just too many numerous shots (not just the dissolves) that look blurry. I have never seen a transfer as uneven as this one. Time has not been kind to this film.

If some of the history I read about this film is correct, Rock Hudson and James Dean did not get along on the set. Some say it had to do with Hudson hitting on James Dean and being turned down. Not sure how true that is. Allegedly, Elizabeth Taylor had to intervene many times during squalls on the set between the two men.

However, by the end of its production, both Hudson and particularly Taylor were extremely distraught over the sudden death of their costar. The film was supposedly hurried into release.

I think I am going to watch the remaining James Dean films from the boxed set I never opened.
 

PaulRossen

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Finally finished watching GIANT this morning.

What an epic film!

Not the story I thought it would be. I had already gone in with a predetermined storyline in my head that it would be a cookie-cutter film where Jett would steal Leslie away from Bick Benedict. Turned out to be something completely different.

I really thought this was a great film, though I kind of felt it was bloated in some areas and somehow fizzled out too soon with the final act going somewhere else completely. However, in its 3-hour 21-minute length, it's mostly impressive and I couldn't help but feel I was watching one of the cinematic greats.

Great to see a young Dennis Hopper and Earl Holliman. I would guess that Holliman is one of the only major cast members still alive?

It's a real shame about the condition of the elements. There are just too many numerous shots (not just the dissolves) that look blurry. I have never seen a transfer as uneven as this one. Time has not been kind to this film.

If some of the history I read about this film is correct, Rock Hudson and James Dean did not get along on the set. Some say it had to do with Hudson hitting on James Dean and being turned down. Not sure how true that is. Allegedly, Elizabeth Taylor had to intervene many times during squalls on the set between the two men.

However, by the end of its production, both Hudson and particularly Taylor were extremely distraught over the sudden death of their costar. The film was supposedly hurried into release.

I think I am going to watch the remaining James Dean films from the boxed set I never opened.
Caroll Baker is around.
 

DavidJ

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My very first James Dean movie watch. I owned the BD set for years but never opened it. I just didn't have a huge interest in watching the films but thought at some point I would look at them.

Will comment more on GIANT after I finish watching it. I can say, thus far, I am really enjoying it.
What bothers me is how inconsistent the 4k looks. When it's good, it's REALLY good.

However, there are a few shots that are blurry and out of focus. I take it this is something inherent in the original print?

I’m in essentially the same boat. I also have the Blu-ray set unopened as I never got around to watching it. I am planning on watching the HBO Max stream of Giant now that it upgraded.
 

Robert Crawford

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Thanks, everyone.

Robert, I think I read that there was something about this film that upset you? I take it that it had something to do with the story?

What specifically was it? I'm about halfway through it.
I wouldn't say I'm upset except to say the racism in the movie bothers me more today than when I first watched the movie back in the 1960's, when I was a young teenager.
 

Robert Crawford

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It's a real shame about the condition of the elements. There are just too many numerous shots (not just the dissolves) that look blurry. I have never seen a transfer as uneven as this one. Time has not been kind to this film.
RAH @Robert Harris could correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the film always had those dissolves issues which means the movie audiences in 1956/1957, were exposed to the same issues we are seeing today with those film sequences.
 

PatrickDA

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Rock Hudson's problems with James Dean didn't have anything to do with being turned down (although, I have no doubt that may have happened), but rather Dean's style of acting seemed disrespectful and time wasting to Hudson. In addition to Geroge Stevens' love of numerous takes per camera setup, the crew had to endure Dean's regular tardiness and "method" related delays, which caused friction between the two men. Hudson learned acting by doing...film to film, he didn't like Dean's nonsense (or what he perceived as nonsense).

Racism? That film is VERY CLEARLY anti-racist. It's one of the few films of any era to be obviously sympathetic to the plight of Mexican-Americans. Not to mention the early feminism of Elizabeth Taylor's character and the attack on sexist beliefs of that time (and even today).

It's in my Top 25 all-time. I just wish it looked better!!!!!
 

bujaki

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I wouldn't say I'm upset except to say the racism in the movie bothers me more today than when I first watched the movie back in the 1960's, when I was a young teenager.
Come visit Texas. Things haven't changed. I've been here since '88 and can attest that Giant reflects the Lone Star state very well as it was then and as it is now.
 

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Racism? That film is VERY CLEARLY anti-racist. It's one of the few films of any era to be obviously sympathetic to the plight of Mexican-Americans.

I get that but whether the film has a clear anti-racist message or not is sort of immaterial. It doesn't mean that the racism necessarily on display (for the story to make sense) can't (or won't) bother someone or make them uncomfortable.
 

Chelsearicky

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I get that but whether the film has a clear anti-racist message or not is sort of immaterial. It doesn't mean that the racism necessarily on display (for the story to make sense) can't (or won't) bother someone or make them uncomfortable.
The racism on display is supposed to bother and make the viewer uncomfortable. Obviously it makes its point.
 

JohnnyLancer

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I get that but whether the film has a clear anti-racist message or not is sort of immaterial. It doesn't mean that the racism necessarily on display (for the story to make sense) can't (or won't) bother someone or make them uncomfortable.
That's the job of the material. The whole film is built around that foundation and the pay off is when bick as a character comes full circle and realizes he was wrong. The actions by him and others prior to that moment should offend viewers. If it doesn't then they would have to take look into themselves.
 

Robert Crawford

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What racism? This film is clearly anti racist.
Of course the film is clearly anti-racism! However, that doesn’t mean the racism shown in the movie shouldn’t bother me because as a senior citizen person of color I don’t see as much progress in that area as I thought it would be when I first watched the movie more than 50 years ago. I had more hope as a teenager than I have today. It’s a great movie as it brought such emotions out of me circa 1967/68, and even more so in 2022.
 

Robert Crawford

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The racism on display is supposed to bother and make the viewer uncomfortable. Obviously it makes its point.
I never said it didn’t make me uncomfortable back in the 1960’s, when I first watched the movie. However, I’m even more uncomfortable today because I realized we still have so much more work to do in that area.
 

Robert Crawford

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That's the job of the material. The whole film is built around that foundation and the pay off is when bick as a character comes full circle and realizes he was wrong. The actions by him and others prior to that moment should offend viewers. If it doesn't then they would have to take look into themselves.
Again, it’s not about the film nor its plot line. It’s about reality in today’s world as the movie made me think of uncomfortable things.
 

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RAH @Robert Harris could correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the film always had those dissolves issues which means the movie audiences in 1956/1957, were exposed to the same issues we are seeing today with those film sequences.
And the reason why they weren’t as noticeable back then is because a third or fourth generation print would have all of the footage looking as blurry as the opticals. It’s the supreme clarity of the original negative scans that make the dupey opticals look so bad in comparison.
 

Will Krupp

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That's the job of the material. The whole film is built around that foundation and the pay off is when bick as a character comes full circle and realizes he was wrong. The actions by him and others prior to that moment should offend viewers. If it doesn't then they would have to take look into themselves.

I never said any of that is untrue. In essence, I said people bring their own experiences to a movie and are entitled to their own reactions to it.
 
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