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Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Professor Echo, Jun 22, 2013.
Anyone know anything about this release? Any reviews?
I haven't heard a word about this release. I'd love to see HOUR OF THE GUN in hi-def. It's a superior western that draws on historical sources to tell a new story about Wyatt Earp. The film is beautifully crafted with a real feeling for the west. John Sturges' poetic images of men moving through isolated landscapes was never more rigidly choreographed, like a strange dance. He achieves an epic scale using as few background extras as possible. I like how it begins -- gets the gunfight out of the way at the beginning. This is about what happens after the gunfight. Sturges' earlier GUNFIGHT AT THE O.K. CORRAL (1957) drew a distinct line between the good guys and the bad guys. That distinction is no longer clear in HOUR OF THE GUN. As played by James Garner, Wyatt Earp crosses moral boundaries and back again. As Doc Holliday, Jason Robards reminds the lawman of what he supposed to stand for. The first film was about the mythical west and is a bona fide classic. This indirect sequel about the historical west is the more sophisticated film, and just as entertaining.
Bring on the blu-ray.
Couldn't agree more, Richard. I have always found this to be a neglected classic. The first five minutes alone should be shown to every student filmmaker all over the world. It's breathtaking in its choice of imagery, sound, music and editing. From what I gather, this is an Australian Blu, but I haven't found a single review of it anywhere nor determined if its region locked. A sure buy for me if it gets good reviews.
Lionel59, a regular contributor to this forum, has this BRD and has said it's pretty good.
Great film, one of James Garner's best, and by John Sturges. I will be buying this if I can track it down. Gunfight at the OK Corral is third on my most wanted list, and this will make a fine double feature.
A helpful review of the film, not the blu-ray:
I just watched the Australian BD, which I got for a decent price through a seller on eBay. It's a pretty good transfer, properly framed at 2.35:1, with good detail and contrast, but it needs some cleaning up. There is a some speckling and debris, not enough to be overly distracting but I doubt that Twilight Time (for example) would accept it in its current condition. It is pretty much a bare-bones release, with no subtitles and the only extra is the theatrical trailer. Still, it is a huge improvement over my old laserdisc and I enjoyed watching it.
Richard, thank you for the review! I'll probably go for it as I'm sure it's an improvement over the old DVD. As for the dirt and debris, as long as it's not excessive, it makes me think I'm watching a FILM source and doesn't bother me too much. I just pretend I'm seeing it at a second run theater.
That's exactly my attitude too! That's also why I don't have a problem with most of Olive's less than perfect BRDs.
You won't be disappointed as long as you're aware that it's not a perfect transfer. It is film-like, with an appropriate level of film grain, and some of the scenery is spectacular. The audio is solid.
If we ever get a Region A release I would like to see MGM get rid of the specks and debris, but until then this will satisfy fans of the film who have region-free Blu-ray players.
This is a Region "A" Blu-Ray (Regions A-B-C) of Hour of the Gun (1967) released in Spain in 2015. It is probably the same Blu-Ray transfer as the Australian Blu-Ray mentioned by other Forum posters. There is an English audio track (2-Channel Stereo) option so no problems with language. Also, titles a credits are shown in original English.
Although it is indeed a bit grainy and speckled this print is razor-sharp and the Dolby Digital sound is great. It is much superior to the "Western Legends" DVD version released by MGM many years ago (2005).
I agree that the film has been underated. James Garner gives one of his best performances and all members of the cast and crew were working at the top of their game. John Sturges at his finest.
Although, unbelievably, it received no Academy Award nominations Roger Ebert and other film critics have always held this Sturges masterpiece in exceptionally high regard.
Unfortunately, as it's a Spanish disc, it's probably a bootleg copy of the Australian disc.
Yeah, I believe the Spanish one is a bootleg. No copyright mention to MGM. The Aussie version is from Shock, they've legimately licensed several MGM films like Exodus, The Devil's Brigade and others. And it's region free.
The Spanish BD is definitely a pirate, either of the Oz BD or a DVD. Pretty good going, 'spanielman': your first post is plugging a counterfeit disc! Start as you don't mean to go on, I hope!
If you do a search for "pirate" or "bootleg" in these forums, you'll find many heated threads on the subject. They're legally and morally wrong, but some collectors are just happy to buy cheaper, substandard discs, with some going so far as to suggest that piracy, in this context, doesn't actually exist!
Back OT: I've had the Oz Hour of the Gun BD for a couple of years and can attest to its quality. It doesn't look like coming out anywhere else soon, except maybe in Germany, so I'd recommend buying it.
Koch, übernehmen Sie!
(Koch, you're move!)
Hold on, guys! Of course I'm not trying to shill any type of pirated disc. Posters here were interested in a Region A Blu-Ray version of the film, as was I, and I just happened to come across this Spanish release available through several well-regarded sellers on both Amazon and Ebay.
The disc I purchased plays beautifully and there is absolutely no indication it may be a secondhand copy.
I am following up by asking a few of these Amazon and Ebay sellers about the provenance of their "La Hora de las Pistolas" discs and if I get any responses I'll keep Home Theater Forum posted.
If those contributing on this site are such knowledgeable specialists then I could've used a heads-up warning on this thread regarding this particular disc before I purchased it.
As it is, I guess I was the first to bring it to anyone's attention.
So lighten up.
IMO, the BD from Spain is a pirated disc. I caution all HTF members regarding that issue.
Here's my first response back from an Amazon seller, who claims the disc is "official" and has "rights".
------------- Begin message -------------
Thanks for asking.
The Blu-ray is a Spanish official release (covers includes Spanish writing), the rights owner of this film for Spain is the company "RESEARCH ENTERTAINMENT" and also is the distributor of this blu-ray. In fact, this edition is exactly the same edition that you can buy on main street shops, dvdshops and online shops etc in Spain.
This same title is being offered for sale by other sellers on Amazon and they are selling exactly the same edition on bluray-r.
There is not another edition available in Europe and there is not an UK official release. This is the only way to have this film on Blu-ray.
I know some small Spanish companies have some titles distributed on BD-R. It's a pity because there are some Spanish producers selling titles on DVD-R and BD-R and they are Official releases.
Have a nice day.
I agree. Responses from other Amazon/Ebay sellers so far pretty much the same, with a touch of indignation thrown in. I sent off an inquiry to Entertainment Research (the distributor) in Madrid. The look of their company on Google maps not promising:
Who knew I'd step into a potentially serious piracy issue just because I was interested in an old western movie? I much rather I'd found the Shock Video version.
Why were there so few Australian BDs available? How many did Shock Video produce? And I don't see any Hour of the Gun BDs produced by OZ, either on Amazon or Ebay. Seems something like that would be around for collectors.
If it's of any interest I used to play golf occasionally with Jim Garner at Bel Air CC in Los Angeles. We talked a bit about Grand Prix and Rockford, but I'm sorry now I didn't get some comment from him about Hour of the Gun.
Maybe I could've used it to salvage my reputation here.