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 New Blus from Twilight Time, MYSTERIOUS ISLAND, FRIGHT NIGHT, etc.
Bob Cashill
Posted: Aug 31 2011, 02:49 PM


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Pulled this PR off the Home Theater Forum; THE EGYPTIAN is a lovely disc but expensive, a return to laserdisc days. (Not sure how they define "affordable"). Still...


TWILIGHT TIME joins forces with
SONY PICTURES HOME ENTERTAINMENT
to release Blu-ray editions of classic Columbia titles

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA (September 1, 2011) — Specialty label TWILIGHT TIME has struck a deal with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment to license and release classic films from the Sony-owned Columbia Pictures library in high-definition Blu-ray editions. In line with TWILIGHT TIME’s innovative limited series concept, just 3000 units of each title will be produced, aimed at the collector/classic film aficionado market, and available exclusively online through www.screenarchives.com, the nation’s largest independent distributor of specialty soundtracks.

The November 8th Blu-ray debut of director Cy Endfield’s and special effects master Ray Harryhausen’s 1961 science fiction/fantasy classic, Mysterious Island, will be followed by a new release on the first Tuesday of each month. Scheduled follow-up on December 13th is the original Fright Night (1985), the horror/comedy cult favorite written and directed by Tom Holland and starring Chris Sarandon and Roddy McDowall.

TWILIGHT TIME—the label that has made a recent splash in the classic film home video pond with the release of such titles as The Kremlin Letter, Violent Saturday, and The Egyptian—is the brainchild of 30-year Warner Bros veteran Brian Jamieson and filmmaker/music restoration specialist Nick Redman. In his long tenure at Warner Home Video, Jamieson initiated and oversaw countless legacy restorations, including the films of Stanley Kubrick, Samuel Fuller’s The Big Red One, and Sam Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch. Redman, a film historian and Oscar nominee for his 1997 documentary, The Wild Bunch: An Album in Montage, is also a prime mover behind Twentieth Century Fox’s pioneering series of limited edition soundtracks, the inspiration for TWILIGHT TIME’s release model.

TWILIGHT TIME, Jamieson explains, is motivated by a desire “to optimize the film enthusiast’s dream, providing long sought-after collectible and fully restored titles, in their original aspect ratios, all manufactured to the highest quality available, and at an affordable price.”

Unlike movies-on-demand offerings, each TWILIGHT TIME release is a BD or DVD (not a DVDr) properly pressed from a restored transfer. Each is accompanied by a collectible 8-page booklet complete with original essay, stills, and poster art. And each TWILIGHT TIME disc provides, whenever possible, that extra most coveted by cinemusic enthusiasts: an isolated score. Mysterious Island offers a particularly high incentive along these lines, featuring music by pantheon composer Bernard Herrmann.

Grover Crisp, Sony Pictures Entertainment's Executive Vice President for Asset Management, Film Restoration, and Digital Mastering, is enthusiastic about his studio's new partnership with the label. “Our collaboration with Twilight Time will allow us to make available for Blu-ray release some of our library's most collectible titles in a way fans have been asking for: restored and re-mastered with attention to detail and quality.”

And Jamieson concurs: “Sony and Twilight Time,” he says, “will be serving both the collectible drive of film aficionados, and, in a larger sense, the cause of cinema literacy.”


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Wade Sowers
Posted: Aug 31 2011, 03:39 PM


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. . . we must have seen this at the same moment as I just posted DVD Savant's "Breaking News" article on another board - I just thought about the price of THE EGYPTIAN myself which is $39.95 at Screen Archives, and up to $44.00 or so on Amazon from various sellers . . . I suppose this is in line with Criterion's Blus, and at 3000 copies they will probably do OK, but it is interesting to watch the price of home entertainment going up and up until it becomes one more item for the elite, right along with so much else around here . . . it just seems so odd that Columbia/Sony cannot/will not/is not interested in running a boutique label themselves, making the Blus Region Free, and selling them around the world . . . it is a bit like Koch in Germany who has been putting out DVDs and Blus of 20th Century Fox westerns under license, will we ever see these released here by Fox? . . .

This post has been edited by Wade Sowers on Aug 31 2011, 03:44 PM
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Brian Camp
Posted: Sep 1 2011, 07:32 AM


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When I went on a Herrmann binge around the time of his centennial on June 29 of this year, I was dismayed to find that the only copy I had of MYSTERIOUS ISLAND, one of my all-time favorite movies, was an EP tape recorded off of TNT—with commercials!—some 20 years ago. So the Blu-ray sounds tempting, esp. with an isolated music score since I don’t believe there was ever a soundtrack album of that.

I’d love to see a good copy of THE EGYPTIAN. The only time I ever saw it was on the old 4:30 Movie on WABC-TV—pan-and-scanned, shown in two parts, with lots of commercial breaks—on a b&w set some 30-odd years ago. I taped it off of AMC in 1995, but it’s not LBX and I still haven’t watched it. It’s a real curio and I’d like to see a pristine copy at least once, but it’s not a good movie and I don’t know that I’d want to pay full Blu-ray price for it. Maybe when the price comes down…

Marlon Brando was supposed to play the title role in THE EGYPTIAN but he refused to do it and Fox wound up punishing him by making him play Napoleon in DESIREE that same year. (He also did ON THE WATERFRONT that year and wound up winning the Oscar.) Herrmann composed music for a few scenes in the film, but Alfred Newman did the rest and the two shared onscreen credit. Fox chief Darryl Zanuck had discovered a Polish cutie while on vacation in Europe and brought her back to Hollywood to be the female lead in the film, a casting choice that contributed to its utter failure. (Brando’s replacement, Edmund Purdom, was no great shakes either.) Zanuck named her Bella Darvi (the last name being a mix of Darryl and his wife Virginia—a pretty audacious move to name your mistress partly after your wife!). In 1989 I was visiting my sister in California and met a friend of hers named Darvi. I mentioned the actress to her and her jaw dropped. “That’s who I was named after and you’re the first person I’ve met who’s even heard of her.”



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Adam Tyner
Posted: Sep 1 2011, 07:39 AM


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QUOTE (Wade Sowers @ Aug 31 2011, 05:39 PM)
I suppose this is in line with Criterion's Blus

...although no one really pays MSRP for Criterion titles, and here, you really don't have a choice if you want these discs. I think I'll have to bite on Mysterious Island. I would've grabbed Fright Night, but for $40...? Um, no.
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Wade Sowers
Posted: Sep 1 2011, 11:21 AM


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. . . apparently Twilight Time posted on Facebook the price for the Sony Blus will be in the $29.95 to $34.95 range . . .

. . . Brian, if you get a chance to watch the Blu of THE EGYPTIAN I think you will be pleased with the product . . .

This post has been edited by Wade Sowers on Sep 1 2011, 11:24 AM
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Kenneth Warner
Posted: Sep 1 2011, 07:05 PM


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QUOTE (Wade Sowers @ Aug 31 2011, 04:39 PM)
but it is interesting to watch the price of home entertainment going up and up until it becomes one more item for the elite,

I wouldn't go quite that far - just that the shrinking amount of people who desire owning movies will have to pay more in a post-PC world of tablets, smartphones, and streaming/on-demand subscription services.

People were quite fine with renting movies for years before the DVD boom, and now people (particularly post-GenX'ers) expect to be able watch their movies wherever they are.

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Bob Cashill
Posted: Sep 1 2011, 08:01 PM


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As DESIREE is one of Brando's worst performances, and worst films, he got his revenge on Zanuck. But I think THE EGYPTIAN was fairly successful, or more successful. FMC shows it LTXed but the Blu is lovely.

(Someone named a kid after Bella Darvi? Well, she lives on; Darvi killed herself in 1971.)


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Wade Sowers
Posted: Sep 3 2011, 11:50 AM


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QUOTE (Kenneth Warner @ Sep 1 2011, 07:05 PM)
I wouldn't go quite that far - just that the shrinking amount of people who desire owning movies will have to pay more in a post-PC world of tablets, smartphones, and streaming/on-demand subscription services. 

People were quite fine with renting movies for years before the DVD boom, and now people (particularly post-GenX'ers) expect to be able watch their movies wherever they are.

. . . I've been thinking about your comment and I agree with your reasoning regarding the post-PC world, however, I do not think the two issues are mutually exclusive - while the number of people wishing to own hard copies of movies will no doubt get smaller in the world you describe, when those distributing the product charge $40.00 or so a copy, then produce only 3,000 at that price, they are cutting off several thousand other people (I cannot believe only 3,000 people in the entire United States want to own MYSTERIOUS ISLAND or FRIGHT NIGHT on Blu) who simply cannot afford that price level and will be out of the runnning, they might "have" to pay more, but just might not be able to do so; it still appears to me it will be an elite minority (those with a reasonably large income) of that future minority who will end up with these movies on Blu while those who might wish to own them but do not have the income can eat their cake and watch the film on a smartphone, or one of the other methods available (perhaps pads will come down in price), which does seem to me kind of a step back in a way from the world we enjoyed when DVDs were reasonably inexpensive, available lots of places, and it was possible to build a library of favorite films . . . I also wonder how many people (other than those who obsess over this stuff and haunt various discussion groups) will even know these Sony Blus are available as they will be distributed via one online source . . . now, of course, we have Universal signing a deal with, I believe, the British Masters of Cinema outift to do a series of Blus of their films, the first of which is TOUCH OF EVIL and will be Region B coded - I have read nothing about this stuff coming out in the States . . . so it goes . . .

This post has been edited by Wade Sowers on Sep 3 2011, 01:32 PM
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Julian Knott
Posted: Sep 3 2011, 08:55 PM


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QUOTE (Brian Camp @ Sep 1 2011, 07:32 AM)
So the Blu-ray sounds tempting, esp. with an isolated music score since I don’t believe there was ever a soundtrack album of that.

There's one of the original score (probably long-deleted), and a recent re-recording.

http://www.soundtrackcollector.com/catalog...hp?movieid=7348



This post has been edited by Julian Knott on Sep 3 2011, 08:56 PM
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Wade Sowers
Posted: Nov 16 2011, 03:23 PM


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I just watched the new Twilight Tme Blu of MYSTERIOUS ISLAND and to my eyes it looks like a fine transfer, the best this film has ever looked on home video . . . for those who love the score, it comes across about like you would imagine in DTS-HD, the opening had me jumping a foot or so off the couch at my usual loudness setting . . . DVD Savant had nice things to say - I was happy to read Columbia's restoration people do all of the transfer work regardless of who releases their movies:

http://www.dvdtalk.com/dvdsavant/s3723myst.html

This post has been edited by Wade Sowers on Nov 17 2011, 01:23 PM
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Wade Sowers
Posted: Dec 26 2011, 11:52 AM


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Interesting interview from Home Theater Forum with a Twilight Time person that is quite informative about the independent operation and how it all works:

http://www.hometheaterforum.com/t/317186/i...-model-and-more
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Wade Sowers
Posted: Feb 25 2012, 03:30 PM


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Announcement on Home Theater Forum of the next four releases.
"On Blu-ray!
May 8
JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH (1959)
THE BIG HEAT (1953)
June 12
JOHN STEINBECK'S "THE WAYWARD BUS" (1957)
AS GOOD AS IT GETS (1997)"

This post has been edited by Wade Sowers on Feb 25 2012, 03:31 PM
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Bob Cashill
Posted: Feb 25 2012, 03:48 PM


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Four good (well, three good, one maybe interesting) titles, not that there's much wrong with the Columbia Noir DVD release of THE BIG HEAT. I'm shocked, though, that Columbia doesn't think it can sell 3,000 copies of AS GOOD AS IT GETS, an Oscar winner that grossed $314M worldwide, on its own. (The DVD, by the way, has a Brooks-Nicholson commentary as I recall, so you may want to hold onto it if you double dip.)


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Wade Sowers
Posted: Feb 25 2012, 04:11 PM


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And after FRIGHT NIGHT appears to have sold out all copies in no time at all, I do wonder why Fox would let JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH go out in a 3,000 copy limited edition - I really do not understand what these folks are doing as I have just been reading around and about that studio Blu-ray sales are going along just fine; perhaps they are still worried about sales of older titles and, sad to say, AS GOOD AS IT GETS is "older" . . . I don't know much about THE WAYWARD BUS movie, but the thought of Joan Collins and Jayne Mansfield trapped in the same vehicle does give me some hope . . .

This post has been edited by Wade Sowers on Feb 25 2012, 04:17 PM
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Bob Cashill
Posted: Feb 25 2012, 04:48 PM


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I guess they liken JOURNEY to MYSTERIOUS ISLAND, which is still available.


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Wade Sowers
Posted: Feb 25 2012, 05:23 PM


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I would think those Dinolizards (actually not a bad title for Roger Corman) would sell a lot of Blus, but you are probably correct . . . now, where oh where is NO DOWN PAYMENT (1957)?

This post has been edited by Wade Sowers on Feb 25 2012, 05:24 PM
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Adam Tyner
Posted: Feb 26 2012, 07:24 AM


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QUOTE (Bob Cashill @ Feb 25 2012, 05:48 PM)
I'm shocked, though, that Columbia doesn't think it can sell 3,000 copies of AS GOOD AS IT GETS, an Oscar winner that grossed $314M worldwide, on its own.

Whatever licensing fee Sony is getting from Twilight Time is almost certainly a whole lot more than they'd get selling 3,000 copies at retail. Far fewer fingers in the pie with their business model.

But yeah, I agree.
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