THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cuts

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WaverBoy

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THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cuts

PostThu Jul 26, 2012 10:50 am

The current Kino DVD of THE MAN WHO LAUGHS is compromised because it's a Frankenstein hybrid of the domestic release and the Italian restoration of the foreign release, which each contain footage of different camera angles and sometimes entirely different takes. Due to the need to match the footage to the Movietone music-and-effects soundtrack that originally accompanied the domestic release, this screws up some shots, one of which is a pan over Olga Baclanova. Another problem is that the DVD is largely mastered from an NTSC conversion of a PAL Betacam.

I know and appreciate that Bret Wood was trying to give us the best of both worlds, using the best visual quality footage from the existing Italian restoration, adding a few missing scenes and the English intertitles from domestic print sources (though one Italian intertitle was accidentally left in) and make it all fit the Movietone track, but it just doesn't quite work. As was done with SUNRISE, THE MAN WHO LAUGHS would make a great double-feature Blu-ray, with both the proper domestic release with the original Movietone track in the best available quality AND the restoration of the slightly racier export version with its original hand-painted Italian intertitles (with removable English subs added, natch) and its Gabriel Thibaudeau score, all remastered in HD, with no PAL-to-NTSC conversion silliness to worry about. All in favor? I know I'd upgrade in a heartbeat. I dearly hope Kino might consider such a release in the future.
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Danny Burk

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Re: THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cut

PostThu Jul 26, 2012 1:32 pm

This is a good plan, and oddly enough, I was thinking of something similar a few days ago. Some of the "Italian" footage's editing leaves a lot to be desired. I don't know that Kino is still licensing material from Universal, though, so it may not be possible.

Likewise, it would be great to get a superior version of OLD DARK HOUSE on blu. LOC has a much better print, but Universal's OK is needed to use it, and they denied access previously. Universal no longer has rights to the film, but I'm guessing that they placed a donor restriction on the LOC print.
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WaverBoy

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Re: THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cut

PostThu Jul 26, 2012 4:49 pm

Danny Burk wrote:This is a good plan, and oddly enough, I was thinking of something similar a few days ago. Some of the "Italian" footage's editing leaves a lot to be desired. I don't know that Kino is still licensing material from Universal, though, so it may not be possible.

Likewise, it would be great to get a superior version of OLD DARK HOUSE on blu. LOC has a much better print, but Universal's OK is needed to use it, and they denied access previously. Universal no longer has rights to the film, but I'm guessing that they placed a donor restriction on the LOC print.


I agree, THE OLD DARK HOUSE still hasn't had a definitive home video release, and that LOC print on Blu would be just the ticket. C'mon, Universal, what gives?
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Gagman 66

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Re: THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cut

PostThu Jul 26, 2012 4:54 pm

Speedy, Danny,

:? Looks like a Blu-ray of THE MAN WHO LAUGHS would have to come from Criterion. They seem to have the option to license Universal Silents now. Is this correct? Still don't know why this movie was never on TCM.
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Jack Theakston

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Re: THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cut

PostFri Jul 27, 2012 11:25 am

If there is an official release (either through Criterion or Kino), and they license it from Universal, they will likely use the domestic version, as Universal has found new elements on the film since the DVD release.
J. Theakston
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WaverBoy

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Re: THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cut

PostFri Jul 27, 2012 4:38 pm

Jack Theakston wrote:If there is an official release (either through Criterion or Kino), and they license it from Universal, they will likely use the domestic version, as Universal has found new elements on the film since the DVD release.


Really? That's EXCELLENT news. Have you any details you can share? Original neg, perhaps???
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Jack Theakston

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Re: THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cut

PostFri Jul 27, 2012 8:31 pm

My source tells me a fine grain that was made from the original negative. It has a lot of wear from the original, but nothing that can't be taken care of in the digital realm.
J. Theakston
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WaverBoy

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Re: THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cut

PostSat Jul 28, 2012 2:41 am

Very cool. I'd love to see that print hit Blu-ray. It would be perfect if the export version could be included as well, ala SUNRISE, but I'd be happy to just have a proper release of the domestic version.
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Re: THE MAN WHO LAUGHS needs to be issued on Blu in both cut

PostSun May 13, 2018 9:36 am

Six years on, anyone know anything about a potential Blu of this?

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