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Much to my surprise, there appears to be not a single HTF Thread that’s dedicated to what is, in my opinion, THE definitive version of A CHRISTMAS CAROL, especially when taking into consideration the numerous DVD Releases, and the Blu-Ray/DVD Sets that have been issued in the last few years!

A Few Fast Facts About A CHRISTMAS CAROL (1951 UK Version):

– Stars Scottish Actor Alastair Sim, who also later voiced Ebenezer Scrooge in a Half Hour animated “Made For Television” Version that was also later issued to Theaters!
– A young Patrick MacNee (Best remembered as Steed on TV’s THE AVENGERS!) appears as the young Jacob Marley. As of October 2014, he is, at 92, also the oldest living A CHRISTMAS CAROL Cast Member!
– Kathleen Harrison, who played Ebenezer’s long suffering Maid, lived to be 103 years old!
– Peter Bull played the first Business Man (Who would go to Scrooge’s funeral only if fed!) and was also the Film’s Narrator!
– Produced by George Minter Productions.
– Released in the UK by Renown Pictures Corporation, Ltd.
– Distributed Theatrically in the U.S. by United Artists.

Perhaps this thread might best be served by HTF Members posting what, for them, is the best quality Home Video Version of this Definitive Christmas Classic in Blu-Ray; DVD; and yes, even the bygone VHS/Betamax Formats; along with any that are best avoided?

Any other tidbits relating to the Film, along with its Cast and Crew would also be greatly appreciated!

CHEERS!

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telzall

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Great idea. I'll have to watch my Blu Ray edtion (any opportunity to do so is always welcome). I will say that certain DVD releases have some audio cues missing.One of the problems I always fixated on was the black line that follows Scrooges sister when she comes into the schoolroom to tell Scrooge he should come home. I believe it is the result of the moving matte effect.That black line has been removed or drastically minimized on the latest blu Ray edtion.
 
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telzall said:
Great idea. I'll have to watch my Blu Ray edtion (any opportunity to do so is always welcome).I will say that certain DVD releases have some audio cues missing.One of the problems I always fixated on was the black line that follows Scrooges sister when she comes into the schoolroom to tell Scrooge he should come home. I believe it is the result of the moving matte effect.That black line has been removed or drastically minimized on the latest blu Ray edtion.
Hi Joe!

Upon doing a bit of checking, I've come across three different Blu-Ray Releases (The first in 2009; the second 60th Anniversary Edition in 2011; and the most recent in 2012!). I've just ordered the latest Blu-Ray/DVD Version from Import CD's, via Canadian Amazon, and greatly look forward to viewing this upon its arrival later this Month!

For years, I had a decent DVD Copy (For which, regrettably I cannot find a Pic of the Cover ANYWHERE online!) that I picked up at our local Grocery Store for Peanuts (Under $3!) back in the early 2000's! While I was looking to order a Blu-Ray Edition last year, the price seemed to be a bit steep for some reason, so I ended up purchasing the Emerald DVD Edition at a local Brick & Mortar Department Store, instead. While the imaging on this is sharp enough, I find that for some medium and distant shots, the sharpness is actually too much, and the imaging doesn't look quite right!

I've since discovered that the Actor who played young Ebenezer Scrooge, George Cole, is still with us at the age of 89, and is to appear in a film, titled ROAD RAGE, as a Character named Cyril, sometime next year.

CHEERS! :)

Tony
 

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I agree, this is the definitive version of the Dickens classic. We have discussed it in the past so the threads are out there, but it's always nice to talk about it again, especially with Christmas around the corner.
 
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I've yet to pick this up on BD and would be grateful if someone could clarify once and for all the names, exact spec and A/V differences between the (three?) releases. If they can be posted here I'll make sure this comparison gets updated:
http://www.dvdcompare.net/comparisons/film.php?fid=19443
 
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Brenty said:
I've yet to pick this up on BD and would be grateful if someone could clarify once and for all the names, exact spec and A/V differences between the (three?) releases. If they can be posted here I'll make sure this comparison gets updated:
http://www.dvdcompare.net/comparisons/film.php?fid=19443
Hi Brent!

A Christmas Carol 1951: A Tale Of Three Blu-Rays!

I shall do my best to simplify what I see as a somewhat messy Tale of The 3 Blu-Ray (By VCI.) A CHRISTMAS CAROL Releases! As most of the visual issues seem to fall in the "Clear as Mud" category, my focus will be on the Audio differentiations.

All three VCI Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Releases have four words of dialogue missing from the following exchange:
Joe: You was born to make a fortune ma'am, and you...you certainly will.
Maid: I certainly won't hold back my hand when I can get something in it...[dropout]...for sake of such a man as he was, I promise you, Joe.


Note: The missing four words; "for reaching it out," can be heard on the 2005 Morningstar DVD Version. Unfortunately, this one has its own issues, Visually speaking!

For the 2009 (Which Uses The Dolby Digital Audio Format.), and 2011 (Which Uses The LPCM Audio Format, as does the 2012 Reissue.) VCI Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Issues, on the 5.1 Surround Track, there is 8 seconds of no dialogue (From 1:21:21-1:21:29). This does not occur on the 2.0 Track. This has been fixed on the 2012 VCI Release. In terms of Technical Specifications and Bonus Features, the 2011 and 2012 Sets are otherwise identical.

The 2009 VCI Release was reported to have issues with "Echoing Audio," especially on he 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Track! This was fixed for the VCI 60th Anniversary 2011 Version, and the Dolby Digital Format was also replaced with LPCM. Unique to the 2009 VCI Edition is the 1935 Seymour Hicks (Unfortunately, the 60 Minute Version, not the 78!); and also a 16X9 (YEECH!) Cropped Version!

For the record, I have ordered the 2012 VCI Set from Import CD's, Via Canadian Amazon, and based on what I've read, is the one that I recommend.

I fully expect that any day now, VCI will announce a 2014 Christmas Release that will likely restore the Maid's four missing words of dialogue! Please kindly excuse me "For Reaching It Out" a bit with that last comment! ;)

CHEERS! :)

Tony

P.S. You might also find it helpful to read the following Threads, which is the information source for my above post:
http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=104728

Here are the Technical Specifications for the VCI 2009 Blu-Ray/DVD Release:
http://www.blu-ray.com/movies/A-Christmas-Carol-Blu-ray/6118/#Review
 

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Great thread. This is also my favorite film version. I have the most recent blu Ray release of the film. Just got the Christmas and holiday films out the other day too!
 
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Tony Bensley

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The Guillotine Films DVD Version also has the Maid's "For reaching it out" dialogue intact! However, with a running time of 1:22:50, I strongly suspect that something else is missing, though I can't put my finger on just what at the moment!

The Guillotine Films DVD Cover:
51PrsA7NR0L.jpg


Unfortunately, the Print itself is decidedly less than Pristine!
dvd_snapshot_01.06.36_2014.10.05_13.40.54.jpg


The same shot from the 2005 Emerald Edition DVD by Morningstar Entertainment:
dvd_snapshot_01.09.16_2014.10.05_13.54.47.jpg


Also, with a 1:26:07 running time, the Emerald Edition is decidedly more complete!

After having resampled the Crappy Guillotine Films Edition, I have to ask myself just what was my complaint regarding the Morningstar Entertainment Version? It may not be the very best A CHRISTMAS CAROL With Alastair Sim Print Transfer, but it's still a damn sight better than most of the other PD knockoffs that are out there! And to my knowledge, it isn't missing any dialogue, either! In my opinion, this SHOULD be an easy fix for VCI, given the previous fixes that they have undertaken!

I'll reserve further judgement until I receive and view the 2012 Edition of A CHRISTMAS CAROL's VCI Blu-Ray/DVD Combo!

CHEERS! :)
 
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bgart13 said:
The most recent bd from VCI is the best, hands down. Is it perfect? No, but if I recall correctly, the encoding is better than on their other releases.
Hi bgart13!

Yes, it is nice that VCI paid attention to the reported issues dating back to their initial 2009 A CHRISTMAS CAROL Blu-Ray/DVD Combo release, especially in regards to the Audio Related shortcomings! I did joke about this in one of my previous posts, but it would be really nice if VCI could perform one last tweak, and restore the Maid's missing "For Reaching It Out" dialogue! It is indeed, too bad that this wasn't spotted sooner, but so it goes, especially considering that there were larger issues with the previous VCI Editions, and I do think it's understandable that "Four Little Words" got missed!


CHEERS! :)

Tony
 
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It'll give VCI another reason to hock another new bd of it in a year or two... ;)
 
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I am a sucker for (and enjoy) just about any adaption of this Charles Dicken's novel and do strongly believe that this is the "definitive" adaption. I have bought just about every dvd / Blu Ray release in Region A along the way but I am very unlikely to buy any future release unless there is a very pressing reason e.g. a true 4k release. Unfortunately, in my opinion, VCI, are moving towards loosing the "goodwill" ( no pun intended :) ) by making a new release on an almost annual basis ( I know it's not quite that but it certainly feels like that to me)

So until something really significant turns up I shall happily stick with my VCI release from 2012. But whatever floats your boat.

Regards,
 
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It's not just you Tony: I was convinced I'd read at least one in-depth thread on the shortcomings of the various ACC BDs on this site, but several searches, using different terms, failed to turn them up for me either.'Tis a great shame that the latest BD still has flawed A/V and looks likely for yet another release at some point. VCI reissuing the same film three times in almost as many years and still not getting it right is really taking the p*ss... Doesn't anyone there actually sit down and watch these things before they sign off on them?

Seriously, I'd love to know exactly how their (lack of) quality control works, when they're redoing an entire disc because of a few flagged-up audio issues and can't manage to ensure each is ticked off in turn. :angry:

Although I now know which one to pick up Tony, it's difficult for me to get the DVDCompare pages updated as you keep confusingly mixing up the details of various public domain and 'quality' DVD and BD releases.

There are any number of PD DVDs out there and they're all much of a muchness. In terms of 'quality' releases, I'm referring only to VCI in the US and Renown or DD in the UK.

Perhaps you'd like to take a look at these two pages:
DVD: http://www.dvdcompare.net/comparisons/film.php?fid=206
BD: http://www.dvdcompare.net/comparisons/film.php?fid=19443
...and itemise any existing mistakes or omissions in the individual releases. I'll do the rest.

It would be useful to many others, I'm sure to get this info all in one place, instead of across multiple 'hidden' threads!
 
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Charles Smith

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In addition to audio oddities, there are digital video glitches in the movie that have yet to be corrected.

And if I'm remembering correctly, whichever BD I have (one of the earlier ones) was a pain in the ass as far as navigating the menus or avoiding promos or whatever, souring me on VCI releases.
 

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Tony Bensley said:
Hi Brent!

A Christmas Carol 1951: A Tale Of Three Blu-Rays!

I shall do my best to simplify what I see as a somewhat messy Tale of The 3 Blu-Ray (By VCI.) A CHRISTMAS CAROL Releases! As most of the visual issues seem to fall in the "Clear as Mud" category, my focus will be on the Audio differentiations.

All three VCI Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Releases have four words of dialogue missing from the following exchange:
Joe: You was born to make a fortune ma'am, and you...you certainly will.
Maid: I certainly won't hold back my hand when I can get something in it...[dropout]...for sake of such a man as he was, I promise you, Joe.


Note: The missing four words; "for reaching it out," can be heard on the 2005 Morningstar DVD Version. Unfortunately, this one has its own issues, Visually speaking!

For the 2009 (Which Uses The Dolby Digital Audio Format.), and 2011 (Which Uses The LPCM Audio Format, as does the 2012 Reissue.) VCI Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Issues, on the 5.1 Surround Track, there is 8 seconds of no dialogue (From 1:21:21-1:21:29). This does not occur on the 2.0 Track. This has been fixed on the 2012 VCI Release. In terms of Technical Specifications and Bonus Features, the 2011 and 2012 Sets are otherwise identical.

The 2009 VCI Release was reported to have issues with "Echoing Audio," especially on he 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Track! This was fixed for the VCI 60th Anniversary 2011 Version, and the Dolby Digital Format was also replaced with LPCM.

For the record, I have ordered the 2012 VCI Set from Import CD's, Via Canadian Amazon, and based on what I've read, is the one that I recommend.

I fully expect that any day now, VCI will announce a 2014 Christmas Release that will likely restore the Maid's four missing words of dialogue! Please kindly excuse me "For Reaching It Out" a bit with that last comment! ;)

CHEERS! :)

Tony

P.S. You might also find it helpful to read the following Threads, which is the information source for my above post:
http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=104728

Here are the Technical Specifications for the VCI 2009 Blu-Ray/DVD Release:
http://www.blu-ray.com/movies/A-Christmas-Carol-Blu-ray/6118/#Review
Hi Brent!

I've edited the above post in an attempt to make it clearer which specs belong to each. Also, upon rereading the Review for the initial 2009 VCI Blu-Ray/DVD Combo, I see that the Seymour Hicks Edited 1 Hour Version and the 16x9 Cropped Version (YEECH!) with Alastair Sim, wasn't on this, but on yet another previously issued VCI 2 DVD Set! Thus, I have excised that erroneous information from my above quoted post (It is too late to edit my original post, unfortunately!), accordingly!

This HTF Member greatly regrets error!

I do hope this helps!

CHEERS! :)

Tony
 

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Since I have both the 2009 and 2011 VCI releases, I'm really not anxious to buy it from them still a third time. Could you clarify the following:

"For the 2009 (Which Uses The Dolby Digital Audio Format.), and 2011 (Which Uses The LPCM Audio Format, as does the 2012 Reissue.) VCI Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Issues, on the 5.1 Surround Track, there is 8 seconds of no dialogue (From 1:21:21-1:21:29). This does not occur on the 2.0 Track. This has been fixed on the 2012 VCI Release. "

Does this mean the 8 seconds of missing dialogue are present on the 2.0 track of the 2011 (60th anniversary) release?

Thank you Tony... I appreciate the specs you've posted and share your enthusiasm for this great movie! :)
 
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Please kindly note that
WilliamMcK said:
Since I have both the 2009 and 2011 VCI releases, I'm really not anxious to buy it from them still a third time. Could you clarify the following:

"For the 2009 (Which Uses The Dolby Digital Audio Format.), and 2011 (Which Uses The LPCM Audio Format, as does the 2012 Reissue.) VCI Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Issues, on the 5.1 Surround Track, there is 8 seconds of no dialogue (From 1:21:21-1:21:29). This does not occur on the 2.0 Track. This has been fixed on the 2012 VCI Release. "

Does this mean the 8 seconds of missing dialogue are present on the 2.0 track of the 2011 (60th anniversary) release?

Thank you Tony... I appreciate the specs you've posted and share your enthusiasm for this great movie! :)
Hi Biff!

Based on what I've read, only the 5.1 Surround Tracks contain the 8 Seconds of no dialogue, and that the said Audio IS present on the 2.0 Audio Tracks for both.

It is indeed, unfortunate that the same four words of the Maid's dialogue is missing from ALL three VCI Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Versions!

Please also kindly note that the 16x9 Cropped Widescreen and 1935 Seymour Hicks Versions are NOT on the 2009 Blu-Ray/DVD Combo, as I erroneously stated in Post #6. I would edit out this error if I could, but HTF's deadline for doing so has unfortunately passed, thus it appears that we are stuck with this most grievous factual error! :wub: My apologies for this!

CHEERS! :)

Tony
 
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Mike Frezon

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Tony Bensley said:
Please also kindly note that the 16x9 Cropped Widescreen and 1935 Seymour Hicks Versions are NOT on the 2009 Blu-Ray/DVD Combo, as I erroneously stated in Post #6. I would edit out this error if I could, but HTF's deadline for doing so has unfortunately passed, thus it appears that we are stuck with this most grievous factual error! :wub: My apologies for this!
Tony:

I have fixed that for you.
 
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