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Oklahoma! (50th Anniversary Edition) (1955)

Gordon MacRae , Gloria Grahame , Fred Zinnemann  |  G |  DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (324 customer reviews)

Price: $38.98 & FREE Shipping. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
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Product Details

  • Actors: Gordon MacRae, Gloria Grahame, Gene Nelson, Charlotte Greenwood, Shirley Jones
  • Directors: Fred Zinnemann
  • Writers: Oscar Hammerstein II, Lynn Riggs, Richard Rodgers, Sonya Levien, William Ludwig
  • Producers: Arthur Hornblow Jr., Oscar Hammerstein II
  • Format: Dolby, Color, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo), English (Dolby Digital 5.0)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.55:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: G (General Audience)
  • Studio: Fox Searchlight
  • DVD Release Date: November 15, 2005
  • Run Time: 145 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (324 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000AP04NI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,496 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Oklahoma! (50th Anniversary Edition)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Disc 1
  • 1955 Cinemascope feature (2.55 aspect ratio)
  • Commentary by Ted Chapin and Hugh Fordin
  • Theatrical teaser
  • Sing-along subtitles
  • Separate chapter list for songs only with Play All feature
  • Disc 2
  • 1955 Todd AO Version (2.20 aspect ratio)
  • Commentary by Shirley Jones and Nick Redman
  • Cinemascope vs. Todd AO featurette
  • Vintage stage excerpts: Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin' performed by Gordon MacRae, People Will Say We're in Love performed by Gordon MacRae & Florence Henderson
  • Theatrical teaser and theatrical trailer
  • Still galleries: Behind the Scenes
  • Lobby cards and one-sheets
  • The Miracle of Todd-AO
  • The March of Todd-AO

Editorial Reviews

Additional Features

The 2005 two-disc edition of Oklahoma! is a clear winner over the original DVD. In addition to the bevy of bonus features, it offers two different versions of the film, both of which are anamorphically enhanced for widescreen TVs. Disc 1 includes the CinemaScope version of the film. The second disc examines an interesting slice of film history: the background of "Todd-AO," the widescreen format that debuted with Oklahoma! and was intended to compete with established widescreen formats such as CinemaScope. There's a 12-minute featurette on the difference between the two formats, as well as two short features ("The Miracle of Todd-AO," 12 minutes, and "The March of Todd-AO," 17 minutes) that were created to show off the format through such gimmicks as first-person roller-coaster rides--precursors to modern IMAX films. Also on the second disc is the complete film as it was shot in Todd-AO. You'll quickly notice the difference between aspect ratios (2.55 to 2.20 for the taller Todd-AO), and that the Todd-AO version includes the overture and entr'acte and a different opening-credit sequence. (The original DVD release was the Todd-AO version.) And because the film had to be shot twice to accommodate the two formats, there are some subtle variations in actor performance, camera angles, etc.

So of the two versions of the film here, which is better to watch? One would expect it to be the Todd-AO version, which was shot in 70 mm instead of 35 mm, and at 30 frames per second rather than 24 for a smoother picture. Unfortunately, that's not the case. The Todd-AO version looks fuzzy and washed out and is clearly inferior to the DVD's CinemaScope transfer. Other bonus features include a commentary track by Oscar Hammerstein biographer Hugh Fordin and Rodgers and Hammerstein Organization president Ted Chapin and sing-along subtitles on disc 1. On disc 2 are a commentary track by Shirley Jones and historian Nick Redman (she recounts how she auditioned for the film on her way to veterinary school, and how she worried about being filmed in Todd-AO because it was "as though you could see every mark on your skin"), and black-and-white television broadcast performances of Gordon MacRae singing "Oh What a Beautiful Mornin'" and Florence Henderson and MacRae singing "People Will Say We're in Love." --David Horiuchi

Product Description

Set in the Oklahoma Territory in the early 1900's, this joyous celebration of frontier life is a story of tender romance and dangerous passion. Gordon MacRae is Curly, a sunny, good-natured ranch hand, and Shirley Jones is Laurey Williams, the farmer's daughter he loves. Rod Steiger is he menacing Jud, who tries to comes between them. The first Rodgers and Hammerstein collaboration, this Academy Award winner for Best Score features the classic songs "Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin'," "The Surrey With The Fringe On Top" and "People Will Say We're In Love."

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
369 of 378 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Todd-AO version of Oklahoma extremely disappointing November 17, 2005
By dooby
Format:DVD
This is a review of only the Todd-AO version of the movie included in the recent 50th anniversary edition of Oklahoma. The main Cinemascope version on Disc One is outstanding and deserves 5 stars and more. However the accompanying Todd-AO version on Disc Two looks abysmal in comparison.

For those who are unaware, the producers filmed two versions of Oklahoma simultaneously, the one commonly seen which is the Cinemascope version and the other, the Todd-AO version which is the one that Rodgers and Hammerstein preferred. It is seldom seen because theaters did not possess the special equipment to project these Todd-AO movies (extremely widescreen with curved edges to give an enveloping effect). The 2 movies are not the same. They did not just use different cameras or lenses to film the same scene. The films are different in that every scene is restaged specifically for either Cinemascope or Todd-AO. This is obvious in a side by side comparison - the individual scenes are subtly different. Some scenes are shot at slightly different angles, some scenes are shot at different times of the day, some scenes include cast members seen in one version but not the other while all scenes show subtle variations in performances between one version and the next. But the most obvious difference is that only the Todd-AO version includes the Oklahoma Overture as well as the Intermission, En'tracte and Finale (Exit Music) which Richard Rodgers wrote for Oklahoma but never included in the Cinemascope version. The end result is that the Todd-AO version runs for 147mins while the Cinemascope version runs for just 139mins, a fact that Fox fudges by giving the runtime of the movie as 145mins.

The Todd-AO version presented here is virtually unrestored. It is so dark you can barely read the opening credits.
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148 of 156 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
I am happy to see a bunch of other folks were as horribly dissapointed as I was to throw this DVD into the player and instead of being treated by what should be a breathtakingly sharp and stunning Todd-AO version on disc two....see a muddy mess...which isn't near the 35mm version on disc one!

Fans of the Todd-AO process (watch Patton some time folks) know what an absolutely unsurpassed format it was....and the DVDs that have come out (like the aforementioned PATTON) that have been taken from it stun with clarity and color...
I don't know how many generations removed from the original disc 2 of this set is ....but its not worth a $50 DVD players time...

Its particularly ironic that 20th Century waste so much other space on the disc on short features extolling the virtues of Todd-AO...only to present such a garbage transfer....
SHAME ON YOU FOX....this should be as gorgeous as the Sound of Music ...and its a big big letdown....and I like many others have been counting the days for this release...

....I am updating this review...with the official excuse from FOX home Entertainment...which follows..

A STATEMENT FROM TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX HOME ENTERTAINMENT REGARDING THE
50TH ANNIVERSARY DVD EDITION OF RODGERS & HAMMERSTEIN'S "OKLAHOMA!"

In recent days we have heard back from a small number of consumers
regarding the DVD of the Todd-AO version of "Oklahoma!" and specifically
that it appears less detailed than the old Fox DVD release from 2000. We
feel it is very important that we communicate the issues on hand
regarding the Todd-AO version of the film.

As you know well, director Fred Zinnemann filmed "Oklahoma!" using two
separate film techniques.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars DVD not all it could have been February 3, 2000
Format:DVD
This is a fine DVD, to be sure, but considering that there are two widely-seen versions of this film (Todd-AO and CinemaScope), I don't see why they couldn't have given us both versions instead of "retiring" one of them for all time. I realize I'm in the minority, but I actually prefer the CinemaScope version, perhaps because that was the one I grew up watching on TV over the years. Once I got past the novelty of seeing the Todd-AO version for the first time I missed hearing the lines delivered the "old" way! I remember the CinemaScope version actually began with a title card that said "Color by Technicolor" while a full-bodied orchestra played the music to "There's a bright golden haze on the meadow"--an exhilarating fanfare never to be heard on home video, as they have always substituted the Todd-AO version's overture. Since the Todd-AO version was a "road show" only attraction, it seems to me that more people would have seen the CinemaScope version over the years and thus it deserves to be preserved for historical purposes if not for any other. Ironically, the back of the DVD box erroneously indicates that it's the CinemaScope version!
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38 of 42 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Ignorant Arrogant Fox November 25, 2005
Format:DVD
Before we look at OKLAHOMA! let's have a look at Fox's track record for presenting vintage roadshow musicals on DVD... the abysmal hack job Fox did on the STAR! DVD is well documented elsewhere... The star billing on the DOCTOR DOLITTLE DVD is a big enough mistake to make Mr. Harrison's estate remind Fox about his contract. The credit block on the the tacky cover of the HELLO, DOLLY! DVD claims the film was ..."produced BY Todd-AO." Todd-AO is a 70mm widescreen film format, but some ignorant Foxer changed the credit from "Produced IN Todd-AO" because they were clueless, and an equally clueless Fox Homevid Exec approved it.

Obviously these people have NO clue about these older films, and that ignorance continued with the subesequent release of OKLAHOMA!.

This new set includes two featurettes explaining the virtues of the TODD-AO format, which debuted with OKLAHOMA! But no one at Fox managed to connect the dots to realize that the 70mm TODD-AO version of OKLAHOMA! is the superior, preferred version of the film, and that the 35mm CinemaScope version is a lower quality second choice.

Originally TODD-AO was shot at 30 frames per second, while regular films run at 24fps. Since most theatres wouldn't be able to install new equipment to show OKLAHOMA in 70mm at 30fps, OKLAHOMA! was shot in BOTH formats, releasing primarily in 70mm TODD-AO, then using the 35mm CinemaScope version for the cheaper sub-runs. Therefore the 70mm TODD-AO version should be the featured version on DVD, given plenty of space on Disc One to showcase all the extra detail that 30fps 70mm contains. The 35mm CinemaScope version should have been squeezed onto disc two as a supplement.

How do these people get their jobs and keep them after so many obvious snafus?
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Awesome
Published 5 days ago by beccy hatcher
5.0 out of 5 stars Great part of the CBS/FOX video collection
Great part of the Roger's Hammerstein collection. The previews are great, and a great part of the CBS/FOX video collection.
Published 5 days ago by Tim Wesley
5.0 out of 5 stars Based on seeing this restored film at the American Film Institute this...
I Saw this restored version of this film at the AFI - this soon to be released Blu-Ray will be based an that restored version. Read more
Published 8 days ago by Zeb
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A wonderful play and I was thrilled to be able to watch it on television.
Published 8 days ago by tdillion
5.0 out of 5 stars great musical western movie
I love this movie,but it is slightly different thant an earilier version I bought which was was probably the theateracal version this one probabaly was the directors version. Read more
Published 9 days ago by Michael Harangozo
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Delivered on time. Classic
Published 11 days ago by Lisa Wetherby
5.0 out of 5 stars OK!
Just wanted to watch the classic. It is still a great musical!
Published 14 days ago by Rangel C. Melendez
2.0 out of 5 stars The movie has some very engaging roles and the part ...
The movie has some very engaging roles and the part for Jud is very well played. The singing is outstanding but the two supporting women parts Aunt and the person singing "I... Read more
Published 19 days ago by Buckeye64
3.0 out of 5 stars The Todd-AO print is appalling, sorry!
The comments from the professionals explaining why the Todd-AO version of Okahoma is pretty much unrestorable, sadly may well be true, but let's be clear on one thing. Read more
Published 20 days ago by addison de witt
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Ignore the older reviews; this is a spectacular remastering of the Todd-AO version. Definitely worth getting!
Published 23 days ago by Barry Rivadue
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Oklahoma!
I've long possessed a collection of DVDs of the movie musicals of Rodgers & Hammerstein which have needed to be `zoomed' in order to present them in an undistorted Cinemascope image - but this has caused a loss of definition.

So, when Twentieth Century Fox released new `50th Anniversary'... Read More
Aug 14, 2007 by ROB RANDALL |  See all 2 posts
That blonde-haired little pixie
AWESOME!!! I absolutely LOVE her!!! Thanks for the info.
Jul 4, 2010 by dollybones |  See all 3 posts
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