The Great Escape [Blu-ray]
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Top Customer Reviews
The Great Escape is certainly one of the most memorable films I've ever seen. The cast includes the late great Steve McQueen, James Garner, Richard Attenborough (Director of Gandhi), Charles Bronson, James Coburn, James Donald (Bridge on the River Kwai), Donald Pleasance and David McCallum (The Man From U.N.C.L.E.). McQueen's performance is riveting and makes the viewer miss him all the more. Garner, who actually was a "Scrounger" during the Korean War, is terrific. It's also particularly nice to see a performance as a good guy from Pleasance and as a human being by Bronson (sorry, but Bronson truly wasted his talent in the Death Wish movies). And in an era when studios tried to substitute backlot sets for on location filming, the POW camp, which was built on location in Germany, looks completely authentic and makes the audience sympathize with the prisoners' plight even more. The DVD heightens the experience by presenting the film letterboxed in clear, vibrant colors. In addition, the DVD edition includes a documentary on both the real story and the making of the film. This film is a classic and the DVD edition does it great justice and makes you realize what a mistake the AFI made by excluding it from its list.
Here's to "the fifty."
This movie has transcended generations -- my 18 year old son recently viewed it and he was totally engrossed in this fantastic true story of men seeking freedom under the most desperate circumstances. He agreed with me that "they don't make em like they used to" and that most of the films today can't hold a candle to The Great Escape.
The DVD is superb -- the color and picture quality is first rate -- looks just like when I saw it in the fall of 1963 at the old Capitol Theatre in Rome, NY. The featurette on the making of The Great Escape is a nice feature that I never saw before.
I'd also mention that I pre-ordered this BD with Amazon's price guarantee. I noticed that the BD was put on sale yesterday morning at amazon for only $9.99, which was less than the $14.99 I had paid on pre-order. I assumed I would get the lower price, but when my BD shipped last night, it was at the higher price. I dashed off an e-mail to amazon's customer service last night, and by this morning, I had a response AND a credit of $6.71 toward my Visa card to give me the lower price of $9.99! Thank you AGAIN, amazon! Now, THAT'S customer service!
Props to amazon duly noted, on to the review:
I've now watched the BD of the film twice, and I find myself largely in agreement with the review that is up at Bluray.com. The soundtrack sounds very good, especially for a 50-year-old film. The music comes through powerfully, especially the bass end, which is smooth, not boomy. Dialogue is crisp and clear, which makes for a nice listening experience.
That's the good.
The bad - unfortunately - has to do with the picture quality. The opening credit shot is really excellent, and it got my hopes up that Fox had done a good job of cleaning up the film and sharpening the picture. Things continue in fine fettle as we reach the prison camp, with the opening scenes at the camp looking sharp. The initial scene of Hilts and Ives (The Mole) in the cooler looks good as well - I had forgotten about their extended dialogue in this opening scene in the cooler (is this scene sometimes cut when shown on TV?).
As the film progresses, the picture quality varies, most often being not much better than that which was on the DVD.Read more ›
THE TRANSFER: : Time has not been kind to the film elements. Although this 2-disc special edition DVD is anamorphically enhanced for widescreen televisions, thereby improving the over all resolution of the image, colors remain pasty and dated throughout most of the film. Flesh tones are either an unnatural looking orange or overly pink. Outdoor scenes often suffer from a muddy color scheme in which greens, browns, blacks and grays become undistiguished and filtered through a sort of milky haze. As a result, definition and fine details often suffer. There is considerable film grain present during the outdoor scenes as well as some age related artifacts. Edge enhancement is present in some of the wire and mesh detailing of the camp. Blacks are not very deep or solid. Whites are rather grayish for the most part. Truly, this is a just barely middle of the road visual presentation. The audio has been remixed to 5.1 but the dialogue remains hollow and strident sounding.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Bought this a while back and it was just a case with no dvd, really disappointed!Published 3 hours ago by mario
Fun movie still. Saw it in theaters a few centuries ago when it first came out. Liked it then, liked it this time. Fun WWII adventure for a couple of mindless hours.Published 4 days ago by Neil Tarey
This flick is like a prequel to "Hogan's Heroes." The Allied POWs are plucky, cocky and handsome. The German soldiers who guard them are bumbling oafs. Read morePublished 5 days ago by Erin Townsen
Great movie. Steve McQueen at his best. He just doesn't give a SxxtPublished 12 days ago by Mona Roblin
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