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Showing 1-10 of 46 reviews(1 star). Show all reviews
on December 21, 2005
Okay first off I want to point out that I love this Alastair Sim version of A Christmas Carol, it is the best version and is the best Scrooge. I would give the movie 5 stars but the DVD put out by VCI is terrible. I totally agree with the previous reviewers who have had problems viewing the movie on this DVD. The menu is horrible and when I try to bypass the long animated menu introduction the DVD goes haywire and locks up my DVD players and I have to unplug the DVD players, plug back in and turn on again and eject the disc. These discs must be defective. I wish a good company would put out a quality DVD and not just Criterion. Criterion charges way too much money for their DVD's! I personally can't afford Criterion DVD's! This is a 5 star movie on a 1 star DVD!
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on December 26, 2005
Granted, the sharpness of the picture is better then the VCI version, but there are persistent, light white scratches, that appear horizontally across the middle of the screen for great amounts of time, usually right across someone's face, that are so annoyingly distracting that watching this version is not much fun (it's kind of almost as bad as watching a cheap DVD that has a line going vertically, through the it for a nice chunk of time).

I checked out two different copies of this DVD and tried them on two different DVD players, to make sure that the scratches had nothing to do with my equipment.

The VCI version is the one to get, as though the picture may be a tad softer, there are no annoying scratches on the print (and until I actually did a side by side comparison of the two, I didn't even notice the VCI version being at all, soft)

Also, the booklet that comes with this new version has nothing of any importance, what so ever, where as the liner notes on the VCI DVD are way more informative.

The only thing that this version does have over the VCI version is the inclusion of an unremastered trailer (which isn't really all that great, as trailers go, anyway).

Hope this helps :)
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on December 11, 2005
Starting from the cheap computer effects introduction from third-rate VCI Entertainment and an ancient Patrick McNee video introduction, my heart sank -- I knew immediately that I had been had. The DVD said "restored and remastered from the original 35mm negative", but this could not be further from the truth. The picture and audio is atrocious, belying the no-budget nature of this release. Be under no illusions -- there was no restoration or remastering involved here. It is amazing that such a fraud would be perpetrated in this age of routine restorations of even the most mundane films. Perhaps Criterion can get a hold of this.
88 comments| 65 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 15, 1999
Such a classic movie put to shame by shoddy DVD reproduction.
If you are looking to build your DVD collection, avoid "VCI home video" at all costs.
You cannot even read the interface, and the menu is a complete mess. Sound quality is awful, and the image quality looks like they put a 1980 video recorder on a worn porn theatre screen.
I LOVE this movie, but VCI should be shot. Who in their right mind gave them the rights to such a piece of film history?
I wish there was a "-5 star" option
11 comment| 31 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
VINE VOICEon December 28, 2007
I'm sorry that I had to waste my money to find out for myself that VCI has indeed made a MESS of the greatest version of "A Christmas Carol" ever filmed.

For most of the film, it does indeed look like a wonderful restoration job--the contrast and sharpness are perfect. But about a quarter of the film has been spliced in from two other, lower-quality sources--and not in one big piece, which wouldn't be so bad, but in little chunks throughout the entire film. So you are constantly thrown out of the movie as you go on a rollercoaster ride from great to awful film quality. One of the low-quality sources even has a very distinct green tint, making matters all that much more impossible to ignore. HOW HARD CAN IT BE TO MATCH THE COLOR BALANCE ON BLACK-AND-WHITE FILMS?!?

As another reviewer here noted, all this splicing really ruins the scene in which Scrooge goes to his nephew's house for dinner. And even though the following scene with Scrooge and Bob Crachit is all from one source, the extremely high number of missing frames had me wondering if all was OK with my DVD player.

VCI ruined the sound, too, with really bad echo in an attempt to create surround sound. When they start the polka at Fred's dinner party, it sounds like Bent Fabric at the piano.

The "widescreen" version is just the same spliced-up, echo-ridden mess with the top and bottom of the picture cut off. And while I am a fan of the best colorization work (i.e., some of Legend Films' releases), the colorized version here is a throwback to the 80s, with a very limited palette that actually gets annoying before long.

After seeing Alistair Sim's amazing, natural performance, so seemingly effortless that you'd think anyone can act, there's Sir Seymour Hick's version of the same script that proves no, they can't. Everyone in that older version is so incredibly stilted that it doesn't matter that the print included here is so very murky and truncated. I never want to see it again.

The only people I can imagine enjoying any of this mess are those who take absolutely no notice of picture and audio quality... so, what was the purpose of the whole "restoration" process?

Seek out the previous VCI DVD of Sim's film. Even though that transfer is too dark, it's FAR more enjoyable than anything in this 2-disc set. And Sim's film is one that should be enjoyed often.
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on December 31, 2015
This is a wonderful movie, and I was excited to see it again because it's never the version broadcast or available for rental. The distributor, VCI entertainment, however, has little grasp of a good interface - the blu ray disc will make you sit through about 5 minutes of advertisements that cannot be skipped when you first insert the disc, but the deal breaker is a mind blowing giant graphic remote in the bottom right of the screen that cannot be turned off either (I've never seen this with any other disc). it's literally 1/5" of the screen.
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on December 26, 2009
A great movie (we have watched the VCR tape of it for years).
A horrible reproduction of it by VCI.
Muddy, unclear images.
And the subtitles won't turn off. And they were obviously done by computer, "Well" becomes "Will" and unending other such garbage transcription. VCI put not effort into this product.
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on April 1, 2010
I have played this disk on three blu ray players and the faults are always in exactly the same places. The amazing thing is they are on the DVD that comes with the blu ray in the same places. Maybe they were on drugs, who knows. Anyway great film, lousy disk.
22 comments| 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 12, 2002
This great movie, the best version, is ruined by the colorizing. All it really adds is ... colors that are pale and out of place, as with all colorized versions of any movies. The old B&W scenes add a touch of old London in the 19th century to the whole movie watching experience. Either find the B&W version or try to turn off the color on your TV.
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on July 6, 2016
Disc was broken and I contacted the seller and basically told me I was out of luck. I paid 20 bucks for my all time favorite Christmas movie and was disappointed.
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