Battle of Britain [Blu-ray]
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However, I was disappointed with the DVD version. The image quality is great, but the DVD differs from the VHS version in some important ways.
First, the DVD version has different subtitles. Some are modified and some are added. If you read all of the newly added (and mostly unnecessary) subtitles, you can't keep up with the video in some scenes. I don't speak German, so I can't say whether the modified subtitles are more accurate, but I feel that some of the translations lost their dramatic edge in this release. The DVD producers also chose to overlap subtitles with the picture, when, at 2.35:1, there's plenty of room below the video for the subtitles.
Secondly, on VHS, the movie's final scene is boosted by Ron Goodwin's beautiful soundtrack. The DVD version drops the Ron Goodwin track and replaces it with a lifeless piece that saps the life out of the final scene. This was a major disappointment.
Lastly, just before the end credits, Winston Churchill's famous quote is replaced with a less notable one.
Overall, it's still a great movie, but the VHS version was nearly perfect. After waiting years for the DVD version, I'm now left hoping there will be a Special Edition version with the VHS subtitles and soundtrack restored.
O.k...so we have Heinkels and Me 109's with Merlin engines. Come on guys! I certainly prefer that to CGI planes that don't even exist. Remember...there's about as little chance that you'll ever see a gathering of warbirds like this on film again as there is of the Battle of Britain repeating itself. And the model Stukas? Well, think about it. Even if there were a few around, which there wasn't (flyable that is), they wouldn't be crashing them now would they. No, we'd still see models. Not one real airplane was destroyed making this film. All were mock-ups or models.
While the love story addicts are generally happier watching the likes of Pearl Harbor for obvious reasons, it must be remembered that films like Battle of Britain and Tora Tora Tora (easily the better Pearl Harbor depiction)are simply intended to tell a story. A little bit of documentary? You bet. A story of which we already know the begining, the middle and the outcome. There are no twists or suprises to be expected. No heroes walking out of the smoke in slow motion. The film is about the battle, not the individuals. It's about the RAF, not the one pilot that flies better than anyone else and has the prettiest girl waiting for him. It's about the country that against overwhelming odds came through. No. No individual heroes or loves...if that's what you're looking for quite simply you are watching the wrong movie. What? Did we see a review or two that complained of no plot? Geeez Loueeez...don't tell the Germans. You can teach monkeys to review better than that.Read more ›
The BD version is fantastic, and is equal or superior to the theatrical release I vaguely remember as a child and beyond superior to the DVD version.
The audio is crisp and clear and makes good use of its uncompressed audio track. For a movie released in 1969, the sound is 21st century quality: the effects roar into your living room, the engines thunder and drone as if you were there, bombs thud with deep bass, gun fire are not only clear they are period accurate to the type of guns used. The vocal track is balanced and not drowned out by effects and background noise. There are several English alternative tracks, one gives more attention to Sir Walton's musical score used in the original theatrical release.
The BD transfer is up to the highest quality BD disks. The actors faces are all so well defined, and luckily show almost no trace of makeup. Texture in uniforms are so clear one could discern cotton from wool in the material, make out details in engines, rivets on planes, brush strokes of paint and even blades of grass on the fields. Most strikingly, the details reveal when stunts were done with real planes, or when props were substituted and animation were used, such as when planes exploded in mid-flight. There is a very striking difference in movements and maneuvers by real planes that is qualitatively different from the CGI, such as used for planes in the 2001 film, Pearl Harbor.
I do recall as child, the film did not receive high praise, due to a shallow script and editing, characters were not developed.Read more ›
1) This version does not include any references to the location or the time frame that the scenes are occuring (e.g. the opening shot takes place May 1940 in France, the scene with Sir Ralph Richardson and Curt Jurgens is at the British Embassy in Switzerland, the first scene with Goering is at Pas de Calis).
2) The opening credits are completely changed especially "The Battle of Britain" instead of "Battle of Britain".
3) No credit is given to Maurice Binder for Main Titles and Ron Goodwin for music. It is Ron Goodwin's music that is used for most of the movie.
4) The English subtitles were inaccurate at least on one occasion. The scene near the beginning that talks about Churchill refering to the battle of France is over. Churchill's quote says "[w]hat General Weygand called the battle of France...", but the subtitle says de Gaulle instead of Weygand.
5) Battle of Britain March by Sir William Walton was substituted at the end. This music was not appropriate because the end of the film paid tribute to those involved in the campaign.
6) The film used a quote that did not capture the essence of the battle. I think that his "Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few" sentiments are much more appropriate.
7) I also believe that the DVD left out the number of German planes, casualties, and missing.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A well-made and historically accurate account of the Battle of Britain !
I recommend this one for fans and students of that WW-II era.
I removed one star from this stunning movie because I found the music in the final air fight to be Inappropriate and highly distracting.Published 1 month ago by Petesweet
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