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new Kino version of THE GENERAL (1 Viewer)

Mark Zimmer

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Mont Alto's excellent edition of THE GENERAL includes a pretty good commentary:

Recordings

From my review at digitallyobsessed.com:

"Mont Alto offers one of the finest prints I've seen of The General, one of Buster Keaton's best pictures, with a thoughtful score in an excellent transfer. This beautiful, easily-overlooked package is very highly recommended. No reason to hesitate."

Mont Alto also releasing MARK OF ZORRO shortly; I haven't watched it yet though I do have a review copy, which indicates it's from the same source as the forthcoming Flicker Alley release, but before DNR was applied, and it also has a commentary.
 

Ed Moroughan

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I was all set to buy the MA edition, but then this showed up. I'm still leaning towards it because the choices for their score seem more appropriate. I'll wait for a review though before deciding. Mark, I'd read your review before, it's a good one. Thanks. :emoji_thumbsup:
 

BillyFeldman

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For me, the finest version of The General is the French DVD with the Joe Hisaishi score - the print is immaculate, and Hisaishi's score works perfectly with the film. I cannot imagine a better transfer or score.
 

David_B_K

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For me, the finest version of The General is the French DVD with the Joe Hisaishi score - the print is immaculate, and Hisaishi's score works perfectly with the film. I cannot imagine a better transfer or score.

I will get the new Kino version. I agree that the video quality of that region 2 version was awesome. But I really thought Hisaishi's score was inappropriate for the movie. It was good as music on its own, but I felt it did not fit the Civil War/Americana quality of the movie. The music was too European and waltz-like for my tastes. It was as though he had written some music for a silent movie and tried to use it to score the wrong film (IMHO). The region 2 version had some great extra features, though, and is still worthwhile. It also included Robert Israel's score. I'll enjoy having both in the collection.

IMO, the Carl Davis score rules all, and needed to be married to a better visual presentation. I'm all over this new Kino release.
 

Jack Theakston

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Wow, of all of the silent films that are still waiting to be released and THE GENERAL gets another release? Wow.
 

Keith Paynter

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I have this preordered specifically for the Lee Erwin organ score. After enjoying the Griggs-Moviedrome prints of Phantom Of The Opera with his marvellous themes and well timed arrangements, I look forward to another one of his rarely available recordings.
 

Stu Rosen

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How does the new Kino transfer compare to the previous Kino transfer (the "Art of Buster Keaton" series)?
 

Mike Frezon

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I don't know if you guys have seen this...but it's Kino's trailer for the DVD release. I posted it (along with prices, of course) in this week's Weekly RoundUp over in Bargains & Deals:
 

Jeffrey Nelson

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Isn't this release mastered from the negative? It should blow away all previous versions, I would think. Plus the choice of 3 scores. Sounds like a no-brainer to me!
 

BillyFeldman

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As opposed to the French release - what do you suppose that's mastered from? I believe it's the - negative. There has never been a better-looking transfer than the French version. The film looks like it's been dusted off and shined up and is fresh and sharp and gorgeous. IF the new Kino is from that master it will be fine - I cannot see any way it could be better.
 

Mike Frezon

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I posted the trailer above because I thought--even with all the YouTube compression built in--the video looked pretty darn good.

FWIW, the trailer also says the new Kino version is mastered from the original camera negative.
 

BillyFeldman

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I guess I'm not being clear enough - the French release was mastered from the original camera negative - either Kino are using that version or have done another mastering from the original camera negative. Since I've yet to be really impressed by a Kino DVD (the foreign counterparts are always better to my eyes), I would doubt it would be better - I'm happy to be proven wrong.
 

David_B_K

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I suspect it is the same source used in the Region 2 Cinema Club release, which was superb. The addition of Carl Davis' score in 5.1 makes it a must-have (at a fairly high price).

Stu Rosen: If this is true, it will blow away the Kino release from The Art of Buster Keaton. That version was a tinted version, and of the three I own, is the worst looking one of the lot. If this is indeed the Cinema club version, it is in black and white only, and looks more like a film from the 50s than the 20s. However, hang onto the original Kino release, as it has a couple of shorts in addition to The General.
 

Stu Rosen

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Tuesday's NY Times says:

Kino International upgrades its previous edition of Buster Keaton’s 1927 masterpiece to a breathtaking color-tinted print struck from the original camera negative. A must for any collection. A bonus disc includes a tour of the original locations led by the Keaton scholar John Bengston.

Not nuts about the tinting, but how can I not get it?
 

Jack Theakston

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Interesting, because it's not as intensive as some other pictures from the time are. In the original prints of this film, everything is uniformly sepia-toned, except for the night scenes that are tinted blue.

A stark difference from pictures from, say, Universal, who used up to seven different color combinations in a film the year before.
 

Richard M S

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So does the new Kino edition, which according to the promotional materials is mastered from that original camera negative, have proper color tinting while the French version does not?
 

David_B_K

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I cannot speak for the new Kino version, but the release info says "color-toned black and white", which means it will be tinted, like the earlier release. The French release from MK2 does not have any tinting at all.
 

Jack Theakston

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I don't know. I don't have the newest Kino releases. There are as many releases of THE GENERAL as there are days in the year, so I've given up until they put it out Blu-ray.

So whatever edition has sepia-tone with blue tint for the night scenes-- this is the correct tint scheme.
 

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