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Customer Review

286 of 304 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The REAL lowdown on this box set, October 10, 2005
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This review is from: Alfred Hitchcock - The Masterpiece Collection (DVD)
O.K., I have the box set in my hands, and although I have not watched every movie I have scanned them all in order to write the review. I am not reviewing the movies themselves, just trying to clear up some of the confusion that seems to be surrounding this release.

First, the technical info is as follows:

The Birds, Marnie, The Trouble with Harry, Topaz, The Man Who Knew Too Much, Torn Curtain, Frenzy, and Family Plot are all Dolby 2.0, 1.85 Widescreen, Color.

Vertigo is Dolby 5.1, 1.85 Widescreen, Color

Rope, Shadow of a Doubt and The Bonus Disc are Dolby 2.0, 1.33 Full Frame, Color.

Rear Window is Dolby 2.0, 1.66 Widescreen, Color.

Psycho is Dolby 2.0, 1.85 Widescreen, B&W.

Saboteur is Dolby 2.0, 1.33 Full Frame, B&W

I actually thought the velvet box was rather nice, and I didn't mind the four discs to a sleeve. The booklet is very nice, printed with lots of color on heavy stock and includes trivia and facts on each movie.

I read a review that said one of the films didn't look as good as the others, so when I scanned them I tried to pay particular attention to the picture quality. I found all of the movies to be crisp and clean, so I would suggest maybe there was a bad disc in his box set (?).

My only negative is that only Vertigo is remastered in Dolby 5.1. I just don't understand digitally remastering the films and not the soundtrack.

However, the amount of brilliant filmmaking included in this collection is almost overwhelming. Every film is a treasure, and it's filmmaking that has rarely been equaled, let alone surpassed.

Look, everyone is always going to have something to complain about (didn't like the package, the sleeves, hasn't done justice to the master), even myself with the soundtrack issue, but Universal has put together a 15 disc package of great films for $84.00. What's that...$5.60 a disc?

If you are on the fence on this one, just click "add to cart" and go to checkout. This is the deal of a lifetime.
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Showing 1-10 of 11 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 7, 2007 8:23:57 PM PST
Vertigo is both 5.1 & 2.0

It wont give you an option on the menu, but once the movie starts, hit Audio (or button that changes audio on your remote) and it will toggle from 5.1 to 2.0

And I agree, the 5.1 remaster of vertigo is terrible.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2007 12:25:36 PM PDT
Nanook says:
actually DJD was complaining that ONLY Vertigo was remastered in 5.1 surround.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 13, 2007 8:46:48 PM PST
MacGuffin says:
Shadow of a Doubt is in COLOR?! When did that happen? :O

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 9, 2008 5:11:39 PM PDT
The problem with the 1999 DVD of VERTIGO was that only the remastered Dolby Digital 5.1 track was included, which had notorious artistic license taken by the restoration team (rerecorded sound effects, effects used to cover up pops and hiss). This set's DVD is said to have the original sountrack as an alternate audio track, one very important reason to buy the set.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 21, 2008 7:39:09 AM PDT
S. Ryman says:
I have to ditto MacGuffin: Shadow of a Doubt certainly CAN'T be in color. One of his true masterpieces and his daughter, Pat Hitchcock's favorite.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 3, 2009 9:49:16 AM PST
Ale says:
do you know if there are any other language subtitles beside English in this Hitchcock collection?

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 17, 2010 2:29:35 PM PDT
I just need to clarify that Shadow of a Doubt is B&W. The box says is in color but is a taping error. Not to worry, the materpiece is as originally was and looking better than ever.

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 10:16:24 PM PDT
When you compare remastering the audio with the picture, I don't think you understand how this works. The picture process is (supposed to be) a restoration. Not necessarily a remastering, all though that word is thrown around. They're trying to make the experience close to watching it when it came out, instead of faded, scratched, etc. Taking a stereo audio track and turning it into 5.1 is nothing less than contemporary sound engineers making up their own soundtrack for the movie. When sound is mixed for 5.1 properly, it's done from scratch and with care. It's not done from a fully finished stereo mix of the movie hacked up and put back together. When it's tried that way you get the b.s. like you hear with Vertigo. I don't understand why anyone wants that. I understand you have expensive surround speakers that you purchased behind you, but isn't it okay just to hear the movie the way it was heard originally? Why can't we let the old be old, and the new be new?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 17, 2012 6:14:36 PM PDT
spiros says:
You hit the nail on the head.

I much prefer to set my surround system to stereo for pretty much everything that wasn't originally engineered for surround - and engineered for surround well.

Posted on Aug 6, 2012 2:07:32 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Nov 12, 2012 1:37:01 PM PST]
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