McLintock! - Authentic Collector's Edition Studio: Paramount Year: 1963 Rated: NR Length: 127 minutes Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1, anamorphically enhanced Audio: Mono, Dolby Digital 5.1 Closed Captioned and subtitled in English Special Features: Multi-participant commentary, Special Intro by Leonard Maltin, 5 featurettes, photo gallery, trailer Suggested Retail Price: $14.99 USD Release Date: October 11, 2005 McLintock! is one of a small handful of films where The Duke gets to exercise his comedy chops. In this loose adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, John Wayne is a tough, proud cattle baron, perfectly paired with Maureen O’Hara as his estranged, firebrand of a wife, Kate. The wife comes visiting when their daughter (Stefanie Powers) comes home from college. Hijinx ensue when the estranged couple are reunited. Not only is there great verbal sparring, but there are slapstick chases and fist fights that involve the entire town. The film features one of the most memorable brawls ever filmed, boasting a “who’s who” of stuntmen of the day, as well as Wayne and O’Hara, who got down and dirty performing stunts of their own. On hand are Patrick Wayne, Yvonne DeCarlo, Chill Wills, Jack Kruschen, Jerry Van Dyke, Bruce Cabot and Edgar Buchanan. McLintock! is an unusually riotous, slapstick comedy western that puts The Duke in a different light. The film quickly became a favorite of Wayne fans upon its release in 1963. The Transfer McLintock! is presented in its original aspect ratio of 2.35:1, and it is anamorphically enhanced. The transfer was made from original film elements which, with the exception of a few white specks here and there, are free of defects. The image has good (but considerably shy of excellent) detail, beautifully and accurately rendered and saturated color, strong black levels and good detail in the shadows. Contrast is very good, with clean white values that avoid clipping. This is the best home video version of this film, by far. There are two audio tracks available - a Dolby Digital English Mono track and an English 5.1 Dolby Digital track. The mono track has good frequency response, considering the age of the source. The frequencies are somewhat mid-range heavy, with no solid bass response and a high end that is somewhat rolled off. There is a touch of hiss detectable at higher volume levels. Still, I expect it is a fairly accurate rendition of the aged source. The 5.1 track adds a bit of openness to the music, and a rare use of surrounds for effect, but that’s about all. No major complaints on the video or audio. While the image could have been a bit sharper, it is excellent in every other way, and the audio is a solid representation of the source elements. Special Features Commentary by Leonard Maltin, Frank Thompson, Maureen O’Hara, Stefanie Powers, Michael Pate, Michael Wayne and Andrew McLaglen In this commentary, Maltin and Thompson were recorded together, giving a tremendous amount of historical perspective on the film and its actors. O’Hara, Powers and Pate have quasi scene specific commentary, mostly in areas which involve their respective characters - these commentaries were recorded separately. Occasional comments by McLaglen and the late Wayne are edited in at times. There are some brief silent passages, but it is a good, informative commentary, overall. Special Introduction by Leonard Maltin (2:40) This introduction by Leonard Maltin gives good historical perspective and trivia on the film. While accessible separately, from the menu, the introduction also plays when you opt to play the film. Unfortunately, this introduction is not anamorphically enhanced, which is a noticeable absence when it is played automatically, before the film starts. The Making of McLintock! This is comprised of three different featurettes. They are not anamorphically enhanced. The featurettes are: The Batjac Story Part 2: The Legacy of Michael Wayne (15:53) The story of Michael Wayne, who, in the shadow of the most famous man in Hollywood, learned the trade from the bottom up - eventually becoming a producer and the head of Batjac. Included is plenty of archival photographs and interviews with family, friends and people who worked closely with him. There are brief clips from interviews with Michael Wayne, as well. A good tribute to the producer, and the man. Maureen O’Hara and Stefanie Powers Remember McLintock! (13:18) High points include O’Hara recalling the famous mud stunt, Powers recalls the chemistry between Wayne and O’Hara and her key scenes with Wayne. Some interesting and amusing recollections from casting to the theatrical presentation. A Good Ol’ Fashion Fight (10:51) Today’s stunt men analyze one of the most memorable fight scenes put to film, the brawl from McLintock! Included are comments from Maureen O’Hara, on the stunts she took part in. The Corset: Don’t Leave Home Without One! (7:45) All you wanted to know about the corset, and more. It’s a history of the garment in life and in film. 2 Minute Flight School (2:20) Stuntmen Tom Morga and Wayne Bauer display the mechanics of the movie punch. Photo Gallery 34 images - movie posters, production stills, artwork, etc. Original Theatrical Trailer (2:45) Batjac Teaser (5:58) A teaser collection of promotions for Island in the Sky, Hondo, The High and the Mighty, McLintock!, Track of the Cat, Man in the Vault, Plunder of the Sun, Ring of Fear, Seven Men from Now. Previews The John Wayne Collection Final Thoughts This is a great John Wayne film, nicely presented on the DVD format with a good transfer and a nice selection of extras. Finally, this film is presented in a worthy fashion on DVD. With a street price around $10 USD, Wayne fans would be crazy to pass this one by. Recommended.