Seven Brides For Seven Brothers 2 Disc SE

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Brent Avery, Oct 3, 2004.

  1. Brent Avery

    Brent Avery Supporting Actor

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    Had the opportunity to pick this up yesterday but only managed to watch the special features and most of the included hard matted 1.77 version that was filmed along with the officialy released 2.55 CinemaScope. It ( the 1.77 )looked pretty good overall although the color seemed a bit washed out in some scenes ( viewed on a 26" tv ) - perhaps due to the fact that it was filmed with Ansco - I definitley would prefer the CinemaScope and will watch it sometime soon with a front projector. I really enjoyed an included Vintage Featurette that was made for MGM's 30th anniversary in 1954. It was filmed in CinemaScope as well and showcased the MGM Orchestra performing melodies such as Singin In The Rain,Trolley Song,Atchison, Topeka,and Santa Fe and a few others - just portions as the entire featurette was around 10 min. long. It was in DD 5.1 but I only had it on 2 channel at the time but it still sounded very good so I think it would be safe to say the 5.1 mix is well done - I also hope it was 16x9 enhanced but will have to find out later. Also a "making of " feature called Sobbin' Women - hosted by Howard Keel which featured some of the stars - Jane Powell and Russ Tamblyn as well as Stanley Donen and Michael Kidd and others. I did not check the total time but it was at least 30 min. Pretty good overall but somehow I wish there had been more!
     
  2. GregK

    GregK Screenwriter

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    Hi Brent, and thanks for the review!

    Do you know what the sound configuration is for the 1.77:1 version of the film?
     
  3. Peter Kline

    Peter Kline Cinematographer

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    I believe both versions were filmed in Ansco color. The flat version has been seen on TNT many times and was distributed in Europe in 1954 because many theatres there didn't have CinemaScope equipment at the time.
     
  4. Garysb

    Garysb Cinematographer

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    I believe the Sobbin' Women documentary was on the special edition VHS version of the film several years ago and was not made for the special edition DVD. I am looking foward to this release and comparing the two versions of the film.
     
  5. Joe Caps

    Joe Caps Cinematographer

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    The documentary was made for TCM and was on the original dvd release. I think it has been expanded with new interviews for this new dvd.
     
  6. Roger Rollins

    Roger Rollins Supporting Actor

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    The documentary was NOT made for TCM. It has never been shown on TCM.

    It was made for the video reissue and ended up on the first DVD. It now contains interviews with Jane Powell and Jacques D'Amboise who weren't availablw/around the first time.....

    Looking forward to this DVD with great excitement. At last anamorphic 16x9! The old disc was just terrible!
     
  7. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    Can't wait. When is the release date...next Tues?
     
  8. Roger Rollins

    Roger Rollins Supporting Actor

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    Next Tuesday, October 12th. Same day as the 4 Disc THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT-COMPLETE COLLECTION and DAMN YANKEES. I'm not even going to risk waiting for an online otder. I want them ASAP, and will be first on line at the local Virgin Megastore where the manager told me they're having a huge musicals display built around these and other already available titles.

    The new 7 Brides packaging is also really nifty. Saw a nice big ad for it in the new Entertainment Weekly. (There was also a huge ad for THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT COLLECTION.
     
  9. Doug Bull

    Doug Bull Advanced Member

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    Very expensive week coming up.
    "That's Entertainment" box set, "Damn Yankees","Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" and "Broadway-The American Musical" box set.

    Looks like the meal budget will only allow for baked beans on toast for this coming week. [​IMG]
     
  10. Jaime_Weinman

    Jaime_Weinman Supporting Actor

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    Having gotten a chance to see the DVD, I have to say that I definitely prefer the "flat" (1.77:1) version. The early 2.55:1 CinemaScope screen is just too wide for a musical, and Stanley Donen apparently compensated by bringing the camera in closer than normal -- it's often a wide but narrow image. The "flat" version shows you more of the actors and has more of the kind of compositions you'd find in the classic, 1.33:1 MGM musicals.

    What I've always found weird is that once CinemaScope was introduced, most studios insisted on making musicals in 'Scope -- even though, when you think about it, the 'Scope format isn't really good for most musical numbers. (A typical musical number is two people dancing together -- in CinemaScope, that leaves a lot of empty space on both sides of the screen.)
     
  11. Peter Kline

    Peter Kline Cinematographer

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    7 Brides contains mostly group dancing, not two people...as does West Side Story and a host of other musicals. Don't buy that argument, sorry.
    [​IMG]
     
  12. Jaime_Weinman

    Jaime_Weinman Supporting Actor

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    True, but there was never any problem accommodating group dancing on the 1.33:1 screen (see the Busby Berkeley musicals). The problem with CinemaScope is that when you have a love duet or a solo number, the screen size requires the characters to either be placed in the middle with too much space on opposite sides, or to be placed too far away from each other, or for the camera to move in too close (whereas in musicals you ideally want to keep the camera farther back to see as much of the performers as possible). A lot of the MGM directors really hated being forced to work in 'scope; Rouben Mamoulian, who directed Silk Stockings, called 2.35:1 "the worst shape ever devised."

    I can think of a few musicals that make good use of 'scope, like (as you mentioned) West Side Story. Gigi is another one that looks good in 'scope (and hopefully it'll get its own SE before long). But for the most part, I think musicals work better in non-'scope aspect ratios.
     
  13. DeeF

    DeeF Screenwriter

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    Jaime, we had this exact discussion in another thread about musicals. I agree, when Cinemascope arrived in 1953, it was a disaster for dance, particularly for the movie Brigadoon. It took awhile for people to figure out how to use the widescreen properly (I think it works well in West Side Story, for instance).

    But Donen says on the commentary on this disk, that the barn raising dance in 7+7 should really be seen in Cinemascope, because it was designed that way. It's true -- it's the one place in the movie where the 1.77 version looks crowded.
     
  14. ArthurMy

    ArthurMy Supporting Actor

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    I think the whole of 7 Brides was designed for Cinemascope, if I remember Mr. Donen correctly (I attended a 35mm screening and he did a Q&A. I don't think it looks nearly as good in the other ratio, and yes, especially in the barn-raising dance.
     
  15. Jefferson

    Jefferson Supporting Actor

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    I can't wait.
    I have ordered this but doubt it will arrive tomorrow...
    I have seen the standard frame version of 7BRIDES on television...and i recall thinking..."Wait..this is it..but it is different...but sorta the same...what is this?"
    That was the first time i had ever heard of multiple versions of a film. Since then i've seen and compared the different versions of OKLAHOMA and THE ROBE...fun thing to be able to do.
     
  16. Larry Daase

    Larry Daase Auditioning

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    Is the new version anamorphic?
     
  17. Roger Rollins

    Roger Rollins Supporting Actor

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    Indeed, both the 2.55 CinemaScope version on Disc one, and the 1.77 "widescreen" version on Disc two are anamorphic.
     
  18. Marty Christion

    Marty Christion Stunt Coordinator

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    Wasn't West Side Story filmed 65mm, not scope? A negligible difference to be sure, but it was still narrower than early 2.55:1 Cinemascope?
     
  19. Peter Apruzzese

    Peter Apruzzese Producer

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    Yes, West Side Story was filmed in SuperPanavision, with an aspect ratio of 2.20:1 on the 70mm release prints. The 35mm prints were cropped top & bottom to 2.35:1
     
  20. Joe Caps

    Joe Caps Cinematographer

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    Got the new seven Brides last night. To me, there are no differences between the new transfer and the old trasnfer. Color seems the same and I thought it was pretty good last time.
    The surprise was the sound. The Box says the scope version is 5.1 and the flat version is mono.
    Popped in the flat version and it's stereo too!!
    I also liked the longer making of - great to see the incredible Jacques Damboise(sp?). Of his three Hollywood films, two are on DVD - Seven Brides and Carousel.
    I wish his third was available from Fox - the Best Things in Life are Free he and Sheree North do a great dance in that film.
     

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