Laurel & Hardy - The Collection (21-disc Box Set) [DVD]
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
This 21-disc box set includes 20 classic Laurel & Hardy films and various shorts, plus a bonus disc containing the original version of Brats (1930), extracts from the German version of Pardon Us (1931), Thundering Fleas (1926), Fluttering Hearts (1927), Prudence (1927) and the documentary Laurel & Hardy--A Tribute to the Boys (1991).A 21-disc box set of classic Laurel and Hardy comedy containing the following: 1. A Chump At Oxford/Related Shorts
2. Classic Shorts/Someone's Ailing
3. Way Out West/Shorts
4. Classic Shorts/Ollie And Matrimony
5. Our Relations/Dual Roles Shorts
6. Classic Shorts/Murder In The Air
7. Blockheads/Themed Shorts
8. Classic Shorts/Blackmail
9. The Bohemian Girl/Related Shorts
10. Classic Shorts/Be Big/Laughing Gravy
11. Saps At Sea/Themed Shorts
12. Classic Shorts/Laurel And Hardy And The Law
13. Sons Of The Desert/Related Shorts
14. Classic Shorts/A Job To Do
15. Pack Up Your Troubles/Related Shorts
16. Classic Shorts/Maritime Adventures
17. Swiss Miss/Animal Shorts
18. Classic Shorts/Married Life
19. Pardon Us/One Prison Short
20. Classic Shorts/More Brushes With The Law
21. Bonus disc: Original version of Brats (1930), extracts from German version of Pardon Us (1931), Thundering Fleas (1926), Fluttering Hearts (1927), Prudence (1927) and the documentary Laurel & Hardy - A Tribute To The Boys (1991)
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The only redeeming value of this 5 disc set is that it is Laurel & Hardy.
Here's a list of the films on the discs, for those of us who didn't receive a booklet in the package.
(* = silent]
Disc 1. A CHUMP AT OXFORD - *FROM SOUP TO NUTS - ANOTHER FINE MESS
2. COUNTY HOSPITAL - THEM THAR HILLS - TIT FOR TAT - PERFECT DAY - *THEY GO BOOM! - *LEAVE `EM LAUGHING
3. WAY OUT WEST - ONE GOOD TURN - THICKER THAN WATER
4. BEAU HUNKS - OUR WIFE - HELPMATES - ME AND MY PAL
5. OUR RELATIONS - BRATS - TWICE TWO
6. THE LAUREL-HARDY MURDER CASE - BERTH MARKS - OLIVER THE EIGHTH
7. BLOCK-HEADS - UNACCUSTOMED AS WE ARE - *WITH LOVE AND HISSES - *SHOULD MARRIED MEN GO HOME?
8. CHICKENS COME HOME - COME CLEAN -*LOVE `EM AND WEEP - *SUGAR DADDIES - *EARLY TO BED
9. THE BOHEMIAN GIRL - *ON THE LOOSE -*THAT'S MY WIFE - *ALONG CAME AUNTIE
10. LAUGHING GRAVY -THE FIXER-UPPERS -*SLIPPING WIVES
11. SAPS AT SEA - *YOU'RE DARN TOOTIN' - BELOW ZERO
12. SCRAM! -NIGHT OWLS - *THE SECOND HUNDRED YEARS - *CALL OF THE CUCKOO - *DUCK SOUP -*FORTY-FIVE MINUTES FROM HOLLYWOOD - BIG BUSINESS -
13. SONS OF THE DESERT - *WE FAW DOWN - *THEIR PURPLE MOMENT - *ON THE WRONG TREK
14. BUSY BODIES - *DOUBLE WHOOPEE - HOG WILD - DIRTY WORK - *THE FINISHING TOUCH - THE MUSIC BOX - *HATS OFF
15. PACK UP YOUR TROUBLES - THEIR FIRST MISTAKE - *PUTTING PANTS ON PHILIP
16. THE LIVE GHOST - *SAILORS, BEWARE! - *TWO TARS - MEN O'WAR - ANY OLD PORT! - *WHY GIRLS LOVE SAILORS - TOWED IN A HOLE
17. SWISS MISS - THE CHIMP - *FLYING ELEPHANTS
18. BLOTTO - BE BIG
19. PARDON US - THE HOOSE-GOW - *THE BATTLE OF THE CENTURY
20. GOING BYE-BYE! - *DO DETECTIVES THINK? - *HABEAS CORPUS - *ANGORA LOVE - *BACON GRABBERS - THE MIDNIGHT PATROL - *LIBERTY - *WRONG AGAIN
21. Original version of Brats (1930), extracts from German version of Pardon Us (1931), *Thundering Fleas (1926), *Fluttering Hearts (1927), *Prudence (1927) and the documentary Laurel & Hardy - A Tribute To The Boys (1991)
The good news is: this series has the best quality currently available on DVD. The bad news is: it's not that good. The first silent film, "Soup to Nuts" has so much digital distortion, the effect is like videos of 1950s TV shows, but worse. More distressing is sometimes extreme flare leaking in the left side of many films, and the right side of another one. The last 2 reels of "Chump at Oxford" and the entire "Live Ghost" have so much flare, I found them unwatachable. I actually became preoccupied with watching the over-exposure flashing into the frame, and had trouble paying attention to the story.
Apparently these movies are not even prints from an intermediary film, but are being re-filmed off of some odd thing. In both "Duck Soup"--a silent movie, and the last reel of "Hog Wild"--a later sound film, there is a curtain-like translucent column behind the film-image on the right side of the picture. An imperfection of the screen onto which they were projecting the movie?! The colourized version of "Hog Wild" does not have this artifact.
Any excuse the negatives have decomposed is bogus. In this very set, the black-and-white version of "Night Owls" is full of scratches and dirt, even torn-and-patched frames--like an early Meliés film. But the colorized version is perfect! The colour version of "Our Wife" is really excellent, sharp and clear as well as clean and without flare or flicker; but the B&W version is full of crud, and the car scene looks like it was re-filmed through a glass with a big smudge all over it. I saw many of these movies at Stanford Theatre, California, in the early 1990s, and they were pristine--even pellucid--with great sound, and complete title music. Also, Hallmark's erstwhile "Little Rascls" series was gorgeous, and it was the same time period, same movie company, same, same...
Many films go in-and-out of quality shot-by-shot. "Men O' War" looks good for a while, then when Finlayson hands Ollie the bill for the sodas, that shot is bad. The very last shot in the movie changes from very good to way over-contrast right while the shot is in progress! Revealingly, the colourized versions do not have these problems. There is no flare at all, and the quality is consistent. They look more like "real movies", instead of some smaller-gauge home-entertainment version. There are fewer on-going scrape-marks in "Me and My Pal", and the colourizing makes the worst scrape less noticeable. "The Perfect Day" is cleaner in the colourized version.
Main-title music for many shorts is butchered, and end-title music frequently cuts off; probably the result of using a bad print.
Brighter sound is better than muffled, but some of the music and voices are so bright and hissy that they break apart, e.g., the music in the beginning of "Berth Marks", and the voices in "Unaccustomed As We Are". (the "restored" sound of "Unaccustomed..." in the "LOST FILMS OF L&H" series is superior to the same film in this DVD set, although the picture quality is not as sharp as it is here.) The sound on the colourized versions is better.
The new soundtracks on the silent movies are pretty good. Many use modern performances of 1930s "Laurel and Hardy music". Never mind that the movies precede the compositions by several years, it's good music and works well when the music editor is not switching from piece to piece arbitrarily. (Sometimes the music is matching a dramatic moment and I'm really getting involved, then suddenly, before the action is resolved, the music jumps into something jovial. Bad choice. But this is a problem with the original music editing in some of the early sound movies, too, such as "Any Old Port".)
Two silent films that have especially fine soundtracks are "The Finishing Touch", and "Sailors Beware". Best of all is "That's My Wife", which has no-talking "sound from the original release", and is exemplary (why can't composers and editors learn anything from the best of these early music-and-sound-effects tracks?).
I have no problem with "colourizing" if it's done well. Most are so out of focus that they are impossible to watch, but a few are excellent, even superior to the B&W versions. The colour usually is a little washy and there are gray lines at the base of the characters' neck; also in some films the colour seems to chase the actors' face, which is really weird. Yet it becomes hard to go back to the black and white, especially to the prints on these DVDs with their flare, lack of contrast and inconsistent quality; colour is more life-like, more interesting, camouflages some of the defects of the image, and it helps the eye to distinguish between foreground and background. They don't have the flare problem, and have better contrast and saturation than the "painstakingly restored" black-and-white versions of this DVD set.
Today's DVD producers want to annoy us by putting loud obnoxious music and visual spoilers on the main menu. Here we see the same dance-from-Way Out West, COMPLETE, over and over again and again during the main menu of every single DVD. By the time I watched the actual movie, I felt like fast-forwarding through the dance. I do not need music or moving images on a menu page. If there are any DVD producers out there, STOP DOING THIS.
Great study collection. If you want to see all the films you've read about in your Randy Skretvedt book before you die, buy this set. If you know how good these films can look, you'll be disappointed with the quality, but not with the content of the collection, and certainly not by the movies themselves.
3 stars for quality, 4 stars for completeness.
Most recent customer reviews
The format of the UK DVD is unknown.Read more