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Review Wanted: "Moby Dick" (1956)

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Review Wanted: "Moby Dick" (1956)

Old 06-30-01, 08:34 PM
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Any comments on the transfer? Also, as brought up in a thread in the Talk forum, there seems to be some concern about the OAR and the color processes used in the film vs. those on the DVD. I've read DVD Savant's review of the disc, but I'd like to hear from a few others before I decide whether or not to pick up the DVD. Any comments?

jim

[Edited by Gamblor187 on 07-07-01 at 09:57 AM]
Old 07-07-01, 12:57 PM
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Anyone?
Old 07-08-01, 02:03 AM
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dvdsavant reviewed this title and was sorely disappointed in the shoddy MGM production of the disc. Go and check out Savant's review.
Old 07-10-01, 05:32 PM
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Originally posted by Smog
dvdsavant reviewed this title and was sorely disappointed in the shoddy MGM production of the disc.
"Sorely disappointed" is an overstatement. DVD Savant calls this release a "reasonable disk" (sic) and calls the image "good," among other things (see below). The disc gets an average rating, hardly a sore disappointment. The review's main beefs appear to be:

1) The image is not cropped to a 1.66:1 or 1:85:1 ratio.

My take: This seems silly. This is not a pan-and-scan transfer. The film, made in the nascent years of widescreen movies, was shot at 1.33:1 and then matted for widescreen display. Some slow-to-change theaters of the day did show it at Academy ratio. If MGM had cropped the image for widescreen display, what ratio would it have been at? 1.66:1? 1.78:1? 1.85:1? All of those ratios were surely used by various movie houses, so which one is "right"? I can assure you that whichever one MGM had chosen, it would have been "wrong." DVD Savant says it should be "at least" 1.66:1. Well, what if MGM had done it at that ratio? Why would that have been better than 1.85:1? If a viewer is that pedantic about it, he could matte the image himself. All of the negative image is there. I think this whole complaint arises from those who have 16X9 TV sets.

2) The image has "probably" been cropped on the sides.

My take: I'd need something more concrete than "probably" to place any value on this criticism.

3) The unique color process originally used for the film has not been re-created.

My take: This is a shame. It would have been nice to have preserved this, and this is the DVD's greatest demerit. I have a problem, though, with the review's waffling on the image quality. It's variously described as being "good," "nothing to write home about" and "okay." How about picking one? And it concludes: "At least there isn't much grain, and the bit rate looks sufficient to carry the wide action shots." The bit rate looks sufficient? Did the reviewer watch the film or a technical spec? Either the wide shots look good or they don't; drop the techie mumbo jumbo. The DVD's image quality looks fine on my 4:3 TV set, especially for a 45-year-old film.

4) This is a "very good" film.

My take: This is a great film. Nothing in DVD Savant's review should sway you from buying it, especially at $20 MSRP.
Old 07-10-01, 07:39 PM
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well spank my kitty. Thanx Randy for cleaning up after me. I promise I will never do it again.

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