Classic Musicals from the Dream Factory Collections

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Lino
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Classic Musicals from the Dream Factory Collections

#1 Post by Lino » Tue Jan 03, 2006 12:27 pm

Followthis link for more on these:
Warner Home Video have announced the Region 1 DVD release of Classic Musicals from the Dream Factory for 25th April 2006. This collection of five newly-remastered favourites from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's Golden Era are all making their debut on DVD, and include It's Always Fair Weather, Summer Stock, Three Little Words, Till the Clouds Roll By, and Ziegfeld Follies and contain some of the most memorable numbers by the greatest stars of the genre, specifically the Hollywood musical's golden trio of immortal legends –- Judy Garland, Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly.

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devlinnn
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#2 Post by devlinnn » Tue Jan 03, 2006 4:08 pm

Breathless news - the wait for these have been a long time coming.

Also wonderful is the realization that Warner have shifted gears in 2006 with what looks to be a boxset of releases every 1-2 weeks. Ken Russell, Jean Harlow, pre-code, Cagney, 50s sci-fi, Janette MacDonald, etc. etc. must all be just around the corner. Proof enough Warner see the end of the DVD road in its current state on the horizon and are making sure they can release as much as they can over the next two years.

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#3 Post by Narshty » Tue Jan 03, 2006 4:13 pm

I don't think Warner's trying to stoke the engine before the train goes over the cliff. It's far more likely these vintage classics are simply selling far better than anyone expected when promoted clearly and attractively in deluxe discounted boxsets like this.

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david hare
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#4 Post by david hare » Tue Jan 03, 2006 5:34 pm

This only leaves The Pirate as the major unreleased Freed Musical.

Also good to see Fair Weather being remastered in its correct 2.55 ratio. As everyone knows the LD was cropped.

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devlinnn
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#5 Post by devlinnn » Tue Jan 03, 2006 6:15 pm

davidhare wrote:This only leaves The Pirate as the major unreleased Freed Musical.
Kismet I've never been that fond of, but I would class it as a major still to be released.

Maybe Warner can box-up 'The Arthur Freed Minor-Majors Collection' - Yolanda and the Thief, Du Barry, Best Foot Forward, Strike Up the Band etc.

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david hare
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#6 Post by david hare » Tue Jan 03, 2006 6:28 pm

Yes you're right. Kismet is something of a dog (not to be unkind or melancholy) but of the others Yolanda is worth a good transfer if only for the "Coffee Time" number. The LD of that title was pale-ish but seemingly true to the color, and much better than the appalling TCM print. Friend in NYC has only seen 16mm prints over the years, none of them terribly good, so it obviously needs restoration, as does the already released Anchors Aweigh.

But I like the idea of 2006 being the Minor Major year: second tier Powells, less than perfect Freeds, etc. Titles that will never make BluRay.

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Lino
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#7 Post by Lino » Tue Jan 03, 2006 6:48 pm

Narshty wrote:I don't think Warner's trying to stoke the engine before the train goes over the cliff. It's far more likely these vintage classics are simply selling far better than anyone expected when promoted clearly and attractively in deluxe discounted boxsets like this.
I agree. Clearly, boxsets sell a lot more when properly put together. And the price helps too. And don't we all love the feel of those sturdy little things in our hands? It's like holding a piece of condensed culture ready to pop into your player!

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#8 Post by RevKarl » Wed Jan 04, 2006 12:18 am

I'm really looking forward to finally seeing the Michael Kidd dance number that was cut from It's Always Fair Weather. Back in my USC days, Gene Kelly was a guest lecturer and he told the class that the number was cut because it was substandard...an assessment that Kidd agreed with and that the co-star actually thanked Kelly for cutting the number. According to Drew Casper, who wrote a book (his dissertation, basically) on Stanley Donen, the film's co-director told him that the number was cut because it was too good and Kelly was afraid it overshadowed his "rollerskating" dance. Now we'll all finally get a chance to judge the number for ourselves.

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Lino
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#9 Post by Lino » Thu Jan 19, 2006 4:42 am

Artwork

I was under the impression that this was going to be a boxset but I see no cover for it...what gives?

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devlinnn
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#10 Post by devlinnn » Thu Jan 19, 2006 7:24 am

Damn, they picked the wrong Follie! Ms. Ball may have been blessed with talent, but she was as sexually alluring as pine furniture.

My pick -
Image

Or any one of these lovlies -

Image

Who you gonna call?

I'm sure the box-set will be there.

(Although, what did happen to the new 'Academy Award Winners Collection' set for next week? All these titles (Kitty Foyle, Johnny Belinda, Lust for Life etc.) look to be only individual releases now.)

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Lino
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#11 Post by Lino » Wed Feb 08, 2006 2:08 pm

devlinnn wrote:I'm sure the box-set will be there.
And here it is in all its hideous glory... :roll:

Image

Image

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david hare
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#12 Post by david hare » Thu Apr 27, 2006 12:27 am

Receieved yesterday. Have some quite mixed feelings about both the titles and some of the transfers.

Ziegfeld Follies is probably the most awaited title, and it also sports the best transfer. The "Limehouse Blues" number with Astaire and Bremer is a great test of your TV/Display's ability to show deeply saturated color. Like the other titles in the box it's not an ultra rez job but seems to have come from a recently mastered print which is really impossible to fault. I've commented about the shortcomings of the movie elsewhere, And the high points. (most of them directed by Minelli. Thank de lawd for chapter skip buttons!)

The next two are probably the most consistently satsifying in the box:
Summer Stock might well be Charles Waters' best Musical, along with the earlier Good News. Kelly and Garland are a great team (as they are in the Pirate, still awaiting release). And the transfer of this is very nice, although the color palette is more far restrained than Follies. I do notice however, if you compare Judy's hat and tails outfit in "Get Happy" with the "Mr Monotony" outtake and edited complete number in Easter Parade, you are seeing the difference between a very nice Eastmancolor copy (Summer Stock) and real IB footage (Easter Parade). The latter has deep, inky blacks, shiny black lapels and lustrous amberish skin tones which were a Technicolor speciality. Still SS is pretty good.

It's great to have It's Always Fair Weather in full Scope ratio at last (the old Laserdisc was badly cropped on one side.) The Donen/Kelly movie will repay more viewings (I can hardly remember it) and it's wonderful to have another full-blooded performance from Michael Kidd.
This was an Eastmancolor title, and the transfer is perfectly serviceable.

The last two titles are more problematic - both as movies and transfers. Till the Clouds Roll By is another "ominbus" style movie, with Robert Walker (!!!) in cheesy gray hair etc as Jerome Kern recalling his career. Forget all that, the numbers are great, and you get a chance to see and hear Lena Horne doing "Can't Stop Loving that Man" from Showboat which she wasn' allowed to do in the 51 Sidney picture. The numbers are good, some fine, but the print looks distinctly Eastman-y to me, without that Techni punch.

The same goes for the look of Three Little Words, and I'm loath to comment on this unseen titles, but am not feeling revved up by it. Others may have warmer feelings for it than I. The transfer is very plain and looks as dul as, say the very weak Anchors Away disc from a few years ago.

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whaleallright
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#13 Post by whaleallright » Fri May 05, 2006 1:11 am

Question: are the DVD cases that come in these Warners box sets (such as this one, the "Classic Comedies" collection, etc.) shrink-wrapped? Or are they loose inside in the box?

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Ashirg
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#14 Post by Ashirg » Fri May 05, 2006 1:26 am

loose inside in the box. I think only one Warner boxset from many that I own came shrink-wrapped, but I forgot which one.

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Lino
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#15 Post by Lino » Sun May 07, 2006 11:34 am


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#16 Post by skuhn8 » Sun May 07, 2006 12:43 pm

Ashirg wrote:loose inside in the box. I think only one Warner boxset from many that I own came shrink-wrapped, but I forgot which one.
The Yankee Doodle/Treasure of Sierra Madre/Adventures of Robin Hood came individually shrinkwrapped in a box.

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#17 Post by david hare » Fri May 19, 2006 9:45 pm

Watching Summer Stock again I am so enraptured by this perfectly wonderful movie, surely Walters best. (Although the totally neglected Good News has its moments, like the terrific "Pass that Peace Pipe" number with Joan McCracken.) These are movies you can't stop smiling through.

I mentioned before but Kelly and Garland really are a wonderful pair. Kelly really lets down his guard (and egotism) here - perhaps his most attractive performance ever. So is Garland - all the more devastating to watch the gruesome outtakes from Annie Get Your Gun made earlier that year. I must say too the color is wonderful throughout the picture, but "Get Happy" which was shot a few months later when Garland was thinner has quite a different, less saturated look. Anyhow SS is definitely one of the very top Freeds for me now, a view I didn't have previously.

And - always - thank de lawd for the Musical as a form. When we were getting over the depression of the new Year the movies I watched repeatedly were Band Wagon, Top Hat and Funny Face! Toss the prozac kid!!

Re Ziegfeld Follies. Surely the astounding "Limehouse Blues" number was a definitive influence on Powell and Pressburger.

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#18 Post by foggy eyes » Mon Apr 02, 2007 12:23 pm

Forthcoming.

The Pirate at last!

Full Specs:
[quote]Warner Home Video have announced the Region 1 DVD release of Classic Musicals from the Dream Factory Volume 2 for 24th July 2007. This collection of seven newly-remastered favorites from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's Golden Era features the DVD debuts of The Pirate, That's Dancing, and Words and Music along with two new to DVD Double Feature discs: a pair of Mario Lanza/Kathryn Grayson musicals -- That Midnight Kiss and Toast of New York, and two Fred Astaire favorites -- Royal Wedding/ Belle of New York.

Following last year's successful Volume 1 (reviewed here) this second collection of the fabled studio's vintage musicals features some of the most memorable numbers by the greatest stars of the genre, top lined by the Hollywood musical's golden trio of immortal legends –- Judy Garland, Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly. Landmark numbers include Fred Astaire dancing on the ceiling and with a coat rack, Gene Kelly's “Be a Clown,â€

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#19 Post by starmanof51 » Mon Apr 02, 2007 3:41 pm

And Magical Maestro as an extra on Belle of New York.

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#20 Post by Belmondo » Mon Apr 02, 2007 7:31 pm

Mostly second tier stuff, but I am sure I will end up buying this set for the commentaries and bonus features. Am I the only knucklehead that does this? Please tell me I am not alone.

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#21 Post by david hare » Mon Apr 02, 2007 8:25 pm

No you're not. At the moment I only intend to buy the Pirate, but the maniac completist in me is nagging. (In all honesty the only other title in the set of interest is Royal Wedding. The Lanza musicals are stinkers. For me the only remaining gap is now a decent print of Yolanda and the Thief - the source for the old laser was not bad.)

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Matt
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#22 Post by Matt » Mon Apr 02, 2007 11:12 pm

I usually buy these as a set and then sell on most of the titles after I've watched them once. Since the discs sell for more singly than in the set, I almost always break even. I'm sure to do the same with this one, keeping only The Pirate and possibly That's Dancing.

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#23 Post by Lino » Tue Apr 03, 2007 10:32 am

Great set, great extras, great deal all around. The Pirate and That's Dancing on the same day? Count me in!

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Lino
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#24 Post by Lino » Fri Apr 06, 2007 2:31 pm

Artwork is already available if you follow the link on the first post of this thread.

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Michael
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#25 Post by Michael » Wed Jun 20, 2007 12:03 pm

Finally watched It's Always Fair Weather today. Quite enjoyable. Gay sparks fly everywhere whenever the three buddies share the screen. :) An enormous smile spread across my face when this blond soldier rubs/caresses his Italian friend's shoulder as the three buddies sing together in that bar. They're so in love!

But anyway, I'd loved the movie more if it had more numbers with the more entertaining people - Cyd and Dolores, of course. I wanted more of them, especially after being spoiled recently by Cyd's haunting, astounding presence in The Band Wagon. And Dolores! Fabulous woman. I loved her mannerisms! She's the most memorable thing about the movie.

This is the only musical movie my friend chooses to teach his film appreciation class. Interesting choice.

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