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Jack the Giant Killer 1962

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Arnie G, Apr 18, 2004.

  1. Arnie G

    Arnie G Supporting Actor

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    I just saw Jack the Giant Killer (1962) at a local shop. I had never heard of this before. It looks like it has Harryhausen monsters in it. Is anyone familiar with this movie? Looks like it might be good[​IMG] It says it's technicolor.
     
  2. John Sparks

    John Sparks Screenwriter

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    ...I just saw Jack the Giant Killer (1962) at a local shop. I had never heard of this before. It looks like it has Harryhausen monsters in it. Is anyone familiar with this movie? Looks like it might be good It says it's technicolor...


    The monsters on the front cover look cool but that's not what you get inside.

    This was made 4 years after "The 7th Voyage of Sinbad." It used 3 of the same people, Kerwin Mathews, Torin Thatcher and the director Nathan Juran and some of the lousiest looking stop motion photography you have ever seen...even when Harryhausen had no money to work with(The Animal World" sequence) his animation is miles above what you see in this film.

    It's "NON-ANAMORPHIC," which makes it a no sale to alot of people and the color and sound is okay but with alot of edge enchancement.

    View this only out of curiosity and then ask yourself...why would anyone in their right mind waste the talents of the above people to make such a load of garbage?
     
  3. GerardoHP

    GerardoHP Supporting Actor

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    This was one of my favorite movies when I was a little kid. Then I saw it again a few years and I was surprised at the low-budget sets and effects, especially the stop motion animation.

    I heard once that there are two versions of this film, a non-musical one (the one that I saw back in the 60's) and a musicalized one that was done a few years later. I never saw this second version.
     
  4. Dick

    Dick Producer
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    I saw the musical version - it played on cable back in '91 or '92. Astonishingly bad. Completely re-edited, with atrocious dubbing. Not a true musical at all, just a fantasy turned into what the Maltin guide calls an "Ersatz" musical.

    The unedited original does look shaky these days, but I, too, grew up liking it a tremendous lot and the nostalgia allows me to forgive its myriad shortcomings. It is a blatant SINBAD rip-off, but it does have its own charm. I think the witches attack on the ship is quite effective, and the tentacled sea creature is animated more smoothly than the other creatures. But it has a really decent music score, some breathtaking color (when it isn't washed out during some of the matte shots), and I believe would still hold appeal for children, even those weaned on technologically superior movies. It's fun! There.
     
  5. John Sparks

    John Sparks Screenwriter

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    It's still a piece of ****! [​IMG]
     
  6. JasenP

    JasenP Screenwriter

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    Err... thanks John.

    John Sparks the be all, end all, penultimate film critic.
     
  7. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    No thread-crashing, please. And I saw this movie when it first ran, back in 1962. Haven't seen it since. Talk about a trip down memory lane.
     
  8. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    I saw it when it first ran, too. I remember thinking how marvelous it was at the time, but this is one film that can't hold up to childhood memories. I saw it again on cable in the 80s, and was disappointed by the poor quality of the effects.
     
  9. Bob Furmanek

    Bob Furmanek Insider
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    I had problems with the transfer. The color level is very low, and I had to boost it on the monitor. Also, they cropped it to 1.85, which is too tight and occasionally cuts off tops of heads, and the top of the castle in several matte shots.
     
  10. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Robert -- that'd probably be my impression today as well. Remember Reptilicus? As a kid, I was blown away by the movie. When I saw it on cable a few years ago, I couldn't believe how bad it is.
     
  11. BarryRR

    BarryRR Agent

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    I recall seeing the TV commercial for this movie in '62 and was terrified (I was six years old, mind you). I saw the "musicalized" edition on cable too and, well, having a high tolerance for weird stuff, I didn't find it so bad. [​IMG]
     
  12. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    Sure do. The monster was this silly limp rubber thing, instead of the wonderful stop motion Harryhausen stuff. I remember how as kids we marveled at the famous skeleton scene in Jason, because we couldn't figure out how it was done. [​IMG]
     
  13. John Sparks

    John Sparks Screenwriter

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    Wasn't the "Reptilicus" creature a marionette? They must have whisked away the guy from Mexico that did the puppet for the giant bird in "The Flying Claw." [​IMG]
     
  14. Jan Strnad

    Jan Strnad Screenwriter

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    I loved Jack the Giant Killer when I was twelve. It was out of circulation for a long, long time due to legal problems, and when it finally resurfaced on cable I grabbed my brand new video tape recorder and dashed over to a friend's house (I didn't have cable TV myself) and sat myself down for a special treat.

    It was like sitting in a pile of dog feces. Not only did it not live up to my childhood remembrance, but it was the hated, reviled, hideous, mangled, tormented, abominable "musical" version. I felt as if I'd been hit in the head with a two-by-four.

    Now that the non-musical version has been made available, and my expectations lowered, I think it's a fun movie for kids.

    Jan
     
  15. Mark Zimmer

    Mark Zimmer Producer

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    Hope that stop motion fans have picked up a copy of Ray Harryhausen's autobiography, An Animated Life. It's gorgeous and copiously illustrated (though it has crappy cheap binding [​IMG] ) and a must for folks posting here. Amazon has it for a mere $35US.
     
  16. John Sparks

    John Sparks Screenwriter

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    I had mine signed personally by Mr. Harryhausen on April 17th. A great addition to anyones collection.[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  17. ChuckSolo

    ChuckSolo Screenwriter

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    I too saw this as a kid on a double bill with the "Magic Sword" I saw "Jack the Giant Killer" on cable last summer and man was I surprised to see that the great movie I remembered seeing as a kid was actually pretty lousy. I laughed through the whole thing. Definately NOT Harryhausen quality by any means!!
     
  18. IanD

    IanD Stunt Coordinator

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    Can anyone offer screencaps comparing the MGM DVD to the Goodtimes edition?
    Failing that, is the Goodtimes a proper open matte edition?
     

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