Customer Review

148 of 156 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars We Waited All this time for this????, May 2, 2014
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This review is from: The Rodgers & Hammerstein Collection (Amazon Exclusive) [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
We waited a long time for the Rodgers & Hammerstein Collection to arrive on Blu Ray. It's been several years since it was originally announced for release, then all of a sudden it was cancelled. Now, it's finally out. The films themselves are from some of the best Musicals ever written. I personally believe that the "Sound of Music" is the best Film ever made, due to it's music, storyline, scenery, and location photography. The film itself is far superior to it's stage production. As far as the musicals themselves, I feel "Carousel" is the best of the Rodgers and Hammerstein Scores. The film was good, but if you see a professional Stage Version, you will come to appreciate it even more. (I was fortunate enough to see Audra McDonald in the 1994 Revival at Lincoln Center.) "State Fair", "King and I", "South Pacific" and "Oklahoma" are also wonderful.

Now, the Blu Rays themselves. Major disappointment. The worst treatment is "The King and I". The color temperature of the film is way off. The entire film has a heavy blue cast over it. At times the actors skin is actually blue. The continuity of color throughout camera angles also changes within scenes. There was no effort to restore this movie to give it the Blu Ray presentation it deserves. A good example is when Lady Thiang is singing "Something Wonderful". She goes from Bluish to even Bluer within the song. She could have easily been a character from "Avatar". It's a shame. These were important films during their time and were shot in CinemaScope 55. They were produced as close to perfection as technology at that time allowed. They are also important films to many people today and they should be preserved on Blu Ray the best possible way. It's a crime that this film was released on Blu Ray and nobody along the way caught an extremely obvious problem. The audio is also lifeless.

"Carousel", another CinemaScope 55 film is flat in color, audio and contrast. The 2006 collection on DVD looks much better. I've even seen VHS tapes with better coloring.

"State Fair" looks just like the DVD. Nothing special.

"South Pacific" and "Sound of Music" both are beautiful as they are the lovingly restored versions that were previously released on Blu Ray a couple years ago.

The only advantage to this set is "Oklahoma". Two versions of the film were shot simultaneously. One in Cinemascope and one in Todd AO. Up until now, the Todd AO version was in horrible shape. This set includes both versions. The restored Todd AO version was recently shown at the film festival in LA. It's stunning! The film pops right off the screen. The restoration is right in line with "Sound of Music" and "South Pacific". It's sad that they didn't give "King and I" and Carousel" the same treatment.

So, to sum things up. If you already have "Sound of Music" and "South Pacific" on Blu Ray, the only good addition in this set is the Todd AO "Oklahoma" which is also set to be released individually in fall. If you have the 2006 R&H DVD Collection, you already posses better looking copies of "King and I", "Carousel" and "State Fair".

After the long wait, you would think they had enough time to give us better quality. They are certainly charging for it. There is nothing on the labeling that says these films underwent restoration, but, you would think that they would have made an effort to render an improved film to Blu Ray. Instead, you are getting 2 films ("King and I" and "Carousel") that looked better when they were on videotape.
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Tracked by 3 customers

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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 4, 2014 11:31:22 PM PDT
I believe this set is an AMAZON exclusive and they control the price not the studios.

Posted on May 4, 2014 11:31:41 PM PDT
I believe this set is an AMAZON exclusive and they control the price not the studios.

Posted on Jun 5, 2014 6:54:57 AM PDT
who1zep says:
I appreciate the comparative comments. I will look for OK in the fall. It's my favorite. Great to hear that the Todd AO version is great this time.

Posted on Jun 6, 2014 10:07:09 AM PDT
I agree with who1zep...I will wait to buy OK in the fall based on this review. Thank you!

Posted on Jul 11, 2014 7:54:12 AM PDT
Colonel Mike says:
Thanks for the informative review; I won't buy this set....

Posted on Sep 24, 2014 2:58:46 PM PDT
keviny01 says:
If you can buy this cheap, it is still a worthy set. As the reviewer said, 3 of the 6 films are actually great video transfers. "State Fair" suffers from lack of early-generation elements so no amount of restoration would help. "Carousel", though not ideal, still looks pretty good. See the screen captures for yourself: http://www.blu-ray.com/movies/Carousel-Blu-ray/99864/#Screenshots . "The Kind and I" is indeed the most disappointing of the bunch. Still, it's not totally unwatchable: http://www.blu-ray.com/movies/The-King-and-I-Blu-ray/47170/#Screenshots

Posted on Mar 6, 2015 3:38:24 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 6, 2015 4:07:49 AM PST
MysterEO says:
I just want to comment on what you wrote: "I personally believe that the "Sound of Music" is the best Film ever made, due to it's music, storyline, scenery, and location photography." This may not be the best forum to put this list on, but here it is:

There are several musicals that could be considered to be the "BEST FILM EVER MADE" and I agree that The Sound of Music is one of them... but I would like to add a few more to the all-time "Best Musical Film Ever Made" list, which also means "Best Musical Ever, on Broadway stage"...

The number one, best ever, most beautiful, and the absolute best musical film ever made, and best musical on Broadway, in my opinion is "My Fair Lady".

This is followed closely, for me, by "Fiddler on the Roof" and "The King and I"... and "Phantom of the Opera" which is great on the stage, and even greater on film... and "Hello Dolly" which is better on film (Barbra Streisand) than on stage.

On stage, two other musicals make my all-time greatest musicals, even though they are not on the all-time longest running hit list... they are "Beauty and the Beast" (which makes it to film as a cartoon, minus two great songs from the stage version) and "Joseph and the Multicolor Dreamcoat" which is a bit whimsical but great fun, and it tells a good story... meant for high schools, but unforgettable... and I love Donnie Osmond's Joseph.

And "Chicago" which is almost a miracle on film... so great on film, that it opaques the live stage... fabulous real dancing and singing by actors Richard Gere and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

And "Man of La Mancha" which has a beautiful message, and makes me cry every time I see it, (and I was a bit actor in it, in an off-Broadway version, in Spanish...)

And "West Side Story"... Natalie Wood, forever... Leonard Bernstein, forever...

Sorry I left out "Les Miserables" which is certainly a powerful story, but the MUSIC does not compare to the beautiful music of "Phantom of the Opera" or "My Fair Lady" or "Fiddler on the Roof".

others worth seeing any time you can, if you can:

"Cats"...

"Me and My Girl"...

"A Chorus Line"...

"The Lion King"

And OF COURSE all Rodgers and Hammerstein !

And let me not forget Gilbert and Sullivan, of which I have seen too little on stage or film, but they are the Masters from which all others followed. I saw a High School version of "The Mikado" and I have a film adaptation of "The Pirates of Penzance" and I know enough to realize they were geniuses. I wish I could see more of them, even in movies.

Posted on Apr 15, 2015 11:33:02 AM PDT
This review is way way way over the top. No way under the sun that the videotape or previous DVDs of THE KING AND I and CAROUSEL are better than the new blu-rays!! No way!! Not remotely!! Some color issues with "blue" but still beautiful to look at!!!

The videotape and DVDs are far inferior!!!
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