"The Terror" 1963 - Nicholson/Karloff - best version so far...

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Eric Huffstutler, Feb 5, 2006.

  1. Eric Huffstutler

    Eric Huffstutler Screenwriter

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    I am always looking for "the best" quality public domain offerings. One of Boris Karloff's last and early Jack Nicholson offerings from AIP was The Terror. It has been out on various discs but so far the best quality one I've come across is the OOP DVD Matters (Movie Masters) under the titles of Silver Screen Collector's Edition put out in 1997. A sticker on the old-fashioned Polygram tray says it was "painstakingly Restored from original materials". This almost looks it. Still has some print damage but no lines and the colors are very true and saturated, not washed out and fuzzy as with other current offerings. Indoor especially closeups are very sharp and clear.

    I saw that Image Entertainment put out a version but it isn't as good as this one especially with outdoor shots.

    There is also one out by York that is supposed to be widescreen and waiting to hear how that one is? It includes a laugh track or you can turn it off. Has anyone seen the York version yet?

    Thanks!
    Eric
     
  2. Richard--W

    Richard--W Banned

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    Glad to have your evaluation of the best edition. I'll start looking for it.

    I actually saw The Terror projected at a Halloween festival in 1971 or thereabouts with several other AIP films including Die Monster Die and The Raven, both with Karloff. I think Curse of the Crimson Cult was also on the bill which was like seven or eight films and you had only one chance to see them. This was at the Smithtown Indoor / Outdoor Drive-In on Long Island.

    Even then The Terror was in mighty poor shape, but it was projected in widescreen aspect ratio -- the same as The Raven and Die Monster Die.

    I don't know what The Terror's correct aspect ratio is, but I assume it would be 2:35. So if the York disc is the only widescreen release it's probably worth finding whether the quality is good or not.

    I don't believe there'll ever be an authorized release or a restoration of this title.
     
  3. Eric Huffstutler

    Eric Huffstutler Screenwriter

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    According to imdb the ratio is 1:85 for "The Terror" The Silver Screen edition is full frame but wonder if it was only un-matted? Words on titles don't seem to be squeezed and don't see any noticable scenes that look cropped?

    I have ordered the York widescreen version but wondered if someone has already seen it to give us a quality check before I can do so?

    Oops... just answered my own question about the silver Screen version with a comment posted on imdb "...This edition of the film is open-matte and an excellent transfer."


    Eric
     
  4. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    Since Sony owns the bulk of the AIP catalog, isn't it about time an official, authorized release was done in original widescreen and restored color!
     
  5. Eric Huffstutler

    Eric Huffstutler Screenwriter

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    I finally received the York version of The Terror. This one is crap too and not widescreen like the box says. So, the Silver Screen edition is still the way to go until an official fully restored version comes along.
    Guess this one hasn't made the Midnite Movie series with the other AIP films is because it was co-owned by Filmgroup, the same people who made the original "Little Shop of Horrors".

    Hope that helps some people make a wise decision?

    The Silver Screen version can be found at Amazon under their used DVD area where they have new ones too. ASIN: 6305010609

    Eric
     
  6. Jeffrey Nelson

    Jeffrey Nelson Screenwriter

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    We had it out at Mobius a few years ago over the OAR of THE TERROR. I think the consensus was that it definitely wasn't 2.35:1, more along the lines of 1.66-1.85. Can't remember the exact final outcome.
     
  7. Joe Karlosi

    Joe Karlosi Producer

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    Another vote for the Sliver Screen version.
     
  8. Paul Arnette

    Paul Arnette Cinematographer

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    Could someone post a link to the Silver Screen version? I'm not sure what I'm looking for, so I would like to see a picture of it, if possible.

    Thanks...
     
  9. Jay E

    Jay E Cinematographer

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  10. Paul Arnette

    Paul Arnette Cinematographer

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    Jay,

    Thanks a lot!

    The cover art is unfortunante. For the record, I have this one:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...v=glance&n=130

    But I haven't watch it yet. At the time I purchased it for Tales of Frankenstein, for inclusion in my Hammer collection. However, after watching Flesh and Blood: The Heritage of Hammer Horror, I seem to remember them saying that that pilot wasn't truely a Hammer production. Why is that relevant? I don't know that it is, but I was thinking of ditching Tales of Frankenstein/The Terror for the Silver Screen The Terror because of it. [​IMG]

    Again, that Sliver Screen disc screams custom cover art worse than the new Death Race 2000 DVD. [​IMG]
     
  11. Eric Huffstutler

    Eric Huffstutler Screenwriter

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    Paul,

    What you have is an Alpha Video version. Alpha does nothing to clean or restore prints and often have the same old worn out prints that everyone else uses. At least the Silver Screen edition isn't faded, has restored audio, is open matte, and isn't missing any scenes. Though what is on this disc isn't pristine, other than a couple of single frames that could easily be restored via computer, this could be a version that could end up pristine if one was so inclined!

    Eric
     
  12. Jay E

    Jay E Cinematographer

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    i ordered mine used from Amazon marketplace. I just hope the seller sends me the correct edition.

    Thanks for your help Eric!
     
  13. Eric Huffstutler

    Eric Huffstutler Screenwriter

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    Jay, let me know what you think when you get it. If you have seen the usual public domain fare of "The Terror", I know you will appreciate this version.

    I don't know if they ever issed the Silver Screen edition in keep cases or not? The original issue was (as the one I received) in a Polygram tray so have to be careful unloading the loading the disc back in it.
     
  14. Eric Huffstutler

    Eric Huffstutler Screenwriter

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    What's a bit odd with the Silver Screen edition is that the film can go many feet nearly blemish free and then one frame will pop up with a scuff and then continue again nearly blemish free. It does this a couple of times but usually no more than a single frame and not at reel changes. Any idea why something like this would happen?

    Eric
     
  15. Jay E

    Jay E Cinematographer

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    I will do that Eric. I'll keep my fingers crossed that they send me the Silver Screen edition.

    Thanks again!
     
  16. Paul Arnette

    Paul Arnette Cinematographer

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    Jay, Eric,

    I got one on order from Half.com, hoping it is the Silver Screen version too...
     
  17. Eric Huffstutler

    Eric Huffstutler Screenwriter

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    Jay E You didn't tell me if you got the right version and your opinion compared to others on the market of this PD title?

    Eric
     
  18. Jay E

    Jay E Cinematographer

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    Hi Eric

    Sorry, I totally forgot...thanks for reminding me.

    Yes i received the correct version!!

    I watched the DVD and I'm very happy with the quality...although it was a little soft in spots, the transfer is the best I've ever seen on any format. Many thanks for the reccomendation!

    The company that supplied the transfer is called TV Matters. Their emblem looks like a red lily. Image use to put out their transfers on DVD. I noticed that a company called Geneon is now re-releasing these transfers on DVD (The Baby, House of Seven Corpses), as well as other titles. Many of them are very nice transfers for public domain.
     

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