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Customer Review

232 of 276 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...One Of Nature's Finest Killers...", February 26, 2012
This review is from: Bond 50: The Complete 22 Film Collection [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)

For those who pre-purchase - there are a few details worth noting about this 22-film/23-disc BLU RAY box set as a 'preamble' to its eventual release in late September 2012...

Excluding the two Daniel Craig outings ("Casino Royale" and "Quantum Of Solace" which are also in the box) - as of February 2012 there are only 11 of the previous 20 James Bond movies presently on Blu Ray - they are "Dr. No", "From Russia With Love", "Goldfinger", "Thunderball", "Live And Let Die", "The Man With The Golden Gun", "For Your Eyes Only", "Moonraker", "License To Kill", "Die Another Day" and "The World Is Not Enough". [Note: 9 have been officially released in the UK - it appears that "The Man With The Golden Gun" and "Licence To Kill" are 'EURO' issues - covering in German writing and with no card wraps].

The 11 that are out there are 1-disc Blu Ray versions matching exactly the 2DVD "Ultimate Edition" issues from 2006. They boast a genuinely beautiful print (a full Lowry Digital Frame-By-Frame Restoration) and each is packed with great extras from the time. Overall - you get hundreds of hours of Bond memories. I've reviewed "Goldfinger" and have also raved about "Live And Let Die" as examples of how good reissued Blu Ray can be when its done properly. I own the others and although I haven't reviewed them - I've watched them all - and I cannot stress this enough - they're gorgeous in terms of print quality.

So when this Blu Ray box does come out it will make the remaining 9 available for the first time on that format. And given what went before they will be nothing short of spectacular to look at and contain some of the best titles in the franchise - "You Only Live Twice", "On Her Majesty's Secret Service", "Diamonds Are Forever", "The Spy Who Loved Me", "Octopussy", "A View To A Kill", "The Living Daylights", "Goldeneye" and "Tomorrow Never Dies".

At this point (February 2012) - there is no indications of 'new' bonus material - and if 20th Century Fox had any - you'd imagine they'd advertise it big time and in advance. So we should presume there 'isn't anything new' on this forthcoming box. But - and it's important to note this - the bonus material of the original 2DVD sets that is out there on the 11 already released - and will be on the 9 newly transferred to this box - is 'HUGE'. I mean there's hour and after hour of it - and the vast majority of that bonus material is genuinely informative and entertaining. The picture of the box looks nice, but of course without access to the actual item - we can't assess whether its been done on the cheap-and-naff - or not. Hopefully not (decent booklet please).

It's probably not the smartest move on my part to review a box set that hasn't come out yet (and 8 months in advance) - but at a retail price of a little over four pounds sterling/five dollars US per disc - "Bond 50" with its 22 films is still a mouth-watering prospect. And fan-gripes aside - it will surely feature heavily in people's pre-purchase Christmas shopping baskets for 2012. I'm personally hoping that each of the missing titles are reissued individually in the same matching card wraps as the initial releases - so I can match up the spines.

To sum up this preamble - in terms of sheer value for money - "Bond 50" is already lining itself up to be a BLU RAY 'Reissue Of The Year' - even before it's released and "Skyfall" (Bond 23) gets here in October. There's a lot of hype around this release and for once it may very well be justified...

PS: July 2012 update:
It's now officially announced that there will be 'new' material available in this box set - a whole disc of it to be exact (Disc 23). See Amazon's updated description and photos above.
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Showing 1-10 of 34 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 29, 2012 1:35:02 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 29, 2012 1:35:27 PM PST
I certainly hope they redo the menus. I found the "quad-choice" menus of the "007 Edition" DVDs (before the remastering) to be really great and easy to navigate. The restoration DVD menus, and the 3 BDs I've got (Dr. NO, From Russia With Love, For Your Eyes Only), I can hardly remember where a specific featurette is or figure out where I am. "Now where's that teaser trailer?" "Where's the special bit with Desmond Llewelyn?" "'MI5 decryption,' is that making-of features or subtitles or audio selection, or...?" Less of the naked chicks with guns, and more menu usability, would be called for.

But I doubt MGM/UA cares about this.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 1, 2012 12:59:15 PM PST
Mark Barry says:
I think you're right. They'll change nothing on these. But - they will look the business - and I can't wait to see "You Only Live Twice", "Diamonds Are Forever" and the two remaining Brosnan films in proper High Def.

Regards from sunny London

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 1, 2012 8:57:38 PM PST
Not my favorite of the films -- ahem -- but I'll admit that Barry's score for YOLT ought sound just gorgeous in DTS-HD or whatever they encode as.

Hey MGM, would music-only tracks be too much to ask for? ;-)

Posted on Mar 4, 2012 9:31:29 PM PST
[Deleted by the author on Mar 6, 2012 11:32:04 AM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 6, 2012 11:03:35 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 6, 2012 11:04:06 AM PST
Mark Barry says:
The review is 'UK' based and those titles are usually 'European' issues that sometimes don't play on UK players because of region blocking. But you're right - if they're out there on Blu Ray (somewhere in the world) - then they should be included.

Also I received e-mails about the original 1967 "Casino Royale" with David Niven and Connery's return to 007 in 1983 with "Never Say Never Again" - both done independently of the franchise.

So I've amended the review to accommodate both of those points.

Good call.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 17, 2012 12:48:23 PM PDT
M. Spaiser says:
You should take out the part about 1967's Casino Royale and Never Say Never Again. They don't belong in a box set of the Bond series because they are not part of the series. That's a fact, not an opinion. If you think those two films should be in the box set, you should also include James Bond Jr. and OK Connery.

Posted on Apr 7, 2012 2:06:41 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 20, 2012 10:31:21 PM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 8, 2012 9:41:04 AM PDT
Mark Barry says:
Hi Isabelle

I say 'preamble' in the review so there is no confusion ("when the item is released..."etc).

I did the review because the information it provides is relevant to people who pre-buy.

You're comments are snide and ludicrous.

By the way I've reviewed for 5 years plus and this is the only 'pre-release' I've ever reviewed.

Posted on Apr 8, 2012 12:21:54 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 20, 2012 10:31:08 PM PDT]

Posted on Apr 26, 2012 9:01:10 AM PDT
Apronikoff says:
Mark -- Please ignore Isabelle's asinine comments. As someone who does most of my dvd/blu-ray shopping in the pre-order phase I rely on reviews like this to summarize what is known about a release and whether it's likely to be worth the money. Moreover, owning all of the last round of Bond DVD releases and several of the current BD's, I'd say that your analysis of what to expect is right on the money.

Now, if only we could get some specifics on the packaging -- at this point that's the only variable keeping me from pre-ordering this.
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