Monty Python on DVD

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Mike Broadman, Jun 2, 2004.

  1. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    I own and have been re-watching the complete Python on DVD.

    Now, I consider myself a fan, but to be honest, watching the episodes fully can be quite tedious. All the links, lead-ins, animation- I'd say, on average, that 1/3 of an episode is really funny. Of course, when it is funny, it's brilliant.

    I would like to have some sort of "best of" Python on DVD and sell my set (which is in practically mint condition- I take care of my stuff), but couldn't find any on-line, even though I rememember seeing something like in stores a couple years ago. Is this something that went out-of-print?
     
  2. Rob Gardiner

    Rob Gardiner Cinematographer

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    How about PARROT SKETCH NOT INCLUDED which appears on one of the A&E sets.

    EDIT: It's on MONTY PYTHON LIVE, available at amazon for only 18 strips of latinum.
     
  3. Gord Lacey

    Gord Lacey Cinematographer

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    Well....A&E has been doing "Best of" for some of their shows (Avengers/Thunderbirds) and certain sources tell me they might be doing best of releases for other shows (hint, hint).

    Gord
     
  4. andrew markworthy

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    There's a three volume 'best of' available in R2, if that's any help.
     
  5. Jonathan Kaye

    Jonathan Kaye Second Unit

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    Huh, at least you've got the option of the full episodes! Over here, the birthplace of Python, all we've got are the lousy 'Best Of's.

    I'll have to stick with the last VHS release, rather than subject myself to a PAL-NTSC-PAL conversion.[​IMG]
     
  6. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    Jonathan, I am glad we have the whole show available, as the states has its fair share of ultra-hardcore Python-heads. I'm just really weening out my various collections, especially DVD.

    I'm holding on to the set for now because I'm re-watching it with my sister, who is being inducted into the Python fold. But after that...

    Watching them now it feels like I'm waiting for them to get to the good parts, which can be annoying.

    The film "And Now For Something Completely Different" doesn't look to hot. For one thing, if it only uses material from the 1st two seasons, it skips on the Cheese sketch (a personal fave) and a couple other great ones. And besides, "recreations" ain't the same thing.

    So I guess the answer is no, no best of. I hope A&E gets does put out something like that. A 4 disc set would be perfect. Ideally, the sketches should all be able to be indexed individually.



    Darn, don't have a region-free player.
     
  7. EricSchulz

    EricSchulz Producer

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    Mike:



    Have you checked into whether it's hackable and/or has a PAL-NTSC converter built in? I have a $40 Philips DVD player I bought at Target two years ago that does both (I did not know it at the time I bought it, though). Check out Video Help and look up your player under the "Hacks" link.
     
  8. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    Jonathan,

    What do you mean by that? If you buy a R1 version, it's converted from PAL (supposing it was originally recorded that way and not on film) to NTSC. Alright, that's how our American friends watch it too.

    But if you buy that DVD (like I do if a PAL version of a TV show isn't available here), you won't have to convert it back to PAL, because your TV-set will show it as NTSC.
    Provided, of course, that your DVD-player can handle R1 (which is almost a standard feature here now, the modification I mean).


    Cees
     
  9. andrew markworthy

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    If I can offer an humble suggestion (dons flameproof underwear) - if you want the best of Monty Python, forget the TV shows and head straight for the CDs.

    Time for a little history lesson (trust me, it leads somewhere). When Monty Python first appeared in the UK, it was cult viewing, but in the UK it was rarely repeated (indeed, to the best of my knowledge it hasn't been repeated on UK terrestrial TV in donkey's years) and the idea of syndication only hit the UK with the advent of satellite TV about a decade or so ago. Okay, so how come every Brit student in the 70s could repeat the Four Yorkshiremen sketch word perfect? Simple - we all had the LPs made after each series, and containing the absolute best bits of the series (plus bits that didn't, like the Four Yorkshiremen sketch, which was from the 'At Last the 1948 Show', a forerunner of Python). Unless you have a strong need to see Gilliam's cartoons (and if you do, then I strongly suggest you need psychiatric help) then Python's humour is largely verbal and doesn't need the visuals. Furthermore, the sketches on the albums had been sharpened up, were slightly ruder than they could get away with on TV, and were far better delivered (the BBC was notoriously tight-fisted over studio time, so fluffed lines etc weren't re-recorded because there wasn't time; just watch an old TV episode and count the number of mistakes). Compare, for example, the Travel Agent sketch on record and on the TV - the former wins hands down. Over the years, most of the Python team have said how much better their LPs were than their TV work.

    In short, I'd satisfy my Python cravings with the CDs and forget about the TV shows. I think you get a much truer idea of the genius of Python that way.
     
  10. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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    That is my absolute favorite Python sketch. I made my parents listen to it after one of their "we walked 10 miles to school through five feet of snow when we were young" talks.

    Then our dad would slash us in two with a bread knive, and dance upon our graves singing Hallalueh.

    And you try to tell that to the kids today and they won't believe you. Nope, nope.


    [​IMG]
     
  11. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    andrew, I've often been tempted to get some of the CDs. There sure seem to be a lot of them. But I haven't really though of them as a replacement for the TV shows. Interesting. I'll check them out and think about it.

    No, I don't need to see Gilliam's animation, that's one of the things that I consider "filler." There are a couple of great visual things, like the fish-slapping dance I might miss, but you're right, it's the verbal stuff that's the best. And with the CDs, I'd have the individual sketches easily accessible.

    I'll peruse them at amazon...
     
  12. Jonathan Kaye

    Jonathan Kaye Second Unit

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    Cees, you're quite right, what I should have said that I will stick with my native PAL VHS tapes rather than buy DVDs with a needless (for someone living in a PAL country) PAL-NTSC conversion.
     

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