October LASERDISC watching. Try for 31 this month!

Discussion in 'Laserdisc' started by wago70, Oct 9, 2007.

  1. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    #19:
    ZOMBIE
    Roan laserdisc. Of all the transfers of ZOMBIE I have seen, I think this is my favorite. The image does the zombies well in addition to the color of the blood. The latest DVD releases look a little to bright for me and the zombies look less effective when you can make out their latex applique. Some flecks here and there and the image didn't have the smooth balance some of my other LD's have. One nighttime scene looked "smudgy" and "inkish" (the boat scene where Peter and Ann are caught by the cops making out). A once strong release doesn't have the pull it once had...but it's still my preferred version.
     
  2. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    CLASSICS! Those are perfect at Halloween-time. Amoeba has some awesome deals going on with LDs. I saw the Dead Ringers boxset for an insane $7! I should have grabbed the U/A Horror Classics for that much, too. People still buy them! Amoeba was always good to me when I traded in. Because of the online prices I bought stuff, I usually broke even.
    I nabbed ZOMBIE HOLOCAUST (with posters!), HOUSE/EDGE OF THE PARK, WAX MASK, LIVING DEAD GIRL, BLADE IN THE DARK and HOUSE BY THE CEMETERY for less than $40.
     
  3. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    #20:
    THE EVIL DEAD
    The terrific Japanese LD. Contains a trailer...and silver sterling picture quality that is bright, sharp and colorful (as Raimi's budget would allow, that is ;) ) Like HALLOWEEN, this is a tight, simple tale that starts...and doesn't really let up. One of the select horror films to get the color of blood JUST RIGHT. The limitations of the effects are revealed due to the clean picture, but who cares - they are still effective since the energy and imagination of Sam Raimi and crew keeps the film clipping along at an intense rate.
    The LD contains only the trailer which is sort of a mini Evil Dead. The later sequels dwelled more on humor, but this film plays it pretty much straight...outrageously so.
     
  4. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    #21
    But, of course, it's EVIL DEAD 2 the "Blood Red" edition from Elite! It's got a tad different feel to it and there's more humor but the film is still inventive and entertaining. Scary, it's not, but fun it most certainly is. The laserdisc picture is still good. LD white flecks are kept to a minium. Many close-ups of Bruce Campbell are excellent and sharp. The surrounding woods come through as a tad soft and there's not incredible detail. The closing extras are an uncompiled selection of behind-the-scenes footage lasting about 15 to 20 minutes. Pretty solid disc.
     
  5. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    #22
    LET SLEEPING CORPSES LIE
    I found this Japan import in a used record shop in '03 for $30. It's an excellent, scary film. Things to note about this laserdisc:
    - the "streaker" in the opening credits has her private parts fogged out.
    - many white nicks and flecks on the film (but rarely in the black letterbox
    bars).
    - verticle lines on the print and some black flecks.
    - the picture is not as sharp as the discs I have been watching.
    - color leans toward yellows and greens.
    - there seems to be some halo-ing around the characters when they are up
    against dark backgrounds.
    ON THE OTHER HAND:
    - the color of blood is terrific!
    - in spite of all the above mentioned, the image is NOT as grainy as the
    Anchor Bay DVD! There is a nice smoothness to the overall picture.
    - the movie just plain ROCKS!
    :)
     
  6. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    I plan on doing my annual Halloween movie marathon tomorrow night, running horror movies from late afternoon till around 2 in the morning. Most will be on LD.

    Meanwhile, tonight I came home and felt in a musical mood...so I put in
    #6: Jesus Christ Superstar
     
  7. sgarner666

    sgarner666 Guest

    You could have followed it up with Jesus Christ: Vampire Hunter - then you'd have a two fer with Jesus and musicals...
     
  8. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    #23
    CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD
    Nice gatefold LD from EC Entertainment. Compared to the rare Japanese double disc version, this was a revelation to my eyes back in '98. The Japan release from 1990 was a very nice package, but the picture was waaaaay too dark and the letterbox bars would constantly "shift" up and down as the movie played. Sometimes they were sharp while other times they were as undefined as a torn paper edge (!)
    This EC release, on the other hand, was a definite step up quality wise. It's not as defined as the Anchor Bay disc and the colors are pale. The beautiful gatefold jacket is nice, however. The source is specked (as we all have seen in every release) but the sound is good and the picture is pretty clear - even the dark scenes.
     
  9. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    ...and I'm not the least bit tired!
    #24
    TERROR IN THE AISLES
    Letterboxed Japanese double disc set. Picture quality is okay. The print used is grittier than the mid 90's Universal VHS. Akin to seeing a film that has been playing a few weeks non-stop. The Japanese subtitles are not intrusive. They are presented vertically on the right side of the frame (!).
    It's nice to see this again and the films featured are terrific. I remember seeing this when it opened in 1984 - we were still underage and went in full costume Halloween night so they wouldn't card us. The theater was packed and the clips are great. I couldn't help being disappointed when it ended. No doubt due to the short running time. However, I was also irritated (at the time) with the narration, some films not even featured even though they were listed (Dawn of the Dead for one) and waaaaaay to much attention given to Action/Suspense films (Vice Squad???? Nighthawks???? KLUTE?!?!?!?! wtf????) a total waste.
    There are also "nothing" scenes from otherwise great films (Jessica Harper walking down a hallway in SUSPIRIA for example) that do nothing to engage fear. However, the absolute worst of all was the goofy collage of cheesy humor films (Konga, Saturday the 14th to name a few) accompanied by a stupid song. I wanted chase scenes, kill scenes, alien frights and better titles (where was Hell Night? Hills Have Eyes? Hell, even the first FRIDAY THE 13TH is missing). What a missed opportunity.
    The sections that did get it right, however: the Satan films, the lead-up to Scanners' mind blowing sequence and the final montage before the credits. The inclusion of the '78 Invasion of the Body Snatchers is featured nicely.
    Oddly, the only scene in the entire movie that made me jump was one of the featured scenes from Ms. 45.
    Okay disc in CAV. I'd love to see a DVD anyway but I can't imagine the rights issues at this point.
     
  10. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    just finished an 8+ hour movie marathon, so I'm a bit tired. But here were the LDs I watched:

    #7: The Haunting (1963). Wow, what an amazing looking laserdisc. If I didn't know better, I'd swear it was a DVD. I gotta admit, the movie does drag a little in spots and get a little talky. But when it's on, it's on. I noticed a lot of similarities with this and Hell Night, and a lot of shots look like they influenced Dario Argento, particularly in Suspiria.

    #8: A Nightmare on Elm Street. I was really disappointed in the transfer here, and it's the special edition from Elite. The dark scenes were murky as hell, and the brighter scenes were oversaturated. Although, it kinda looked like daylight here the last week, with the sun filtered through the wildfire smoke. It actually seemed BRIGHTER than normal, much like the daylight scenes on this disc. But I'm also a little disappointed with the movie itself, which has not held up over time. Not sure if I'm making sense here, it's late

    #9: The Exorcist. This was the 25th anniversary edition, with the same features as the corresponding DVD. But I always thought that DVD sounded a little thin, and the Dolby Digital mix on this LD is pretty damn good. Good sound is critical for The Exorcist. And the movie still holds your attention, too.

    #10: The Blair Witch Project. I usually spin the LD of this film, solely because it was one of the last American LDs produced. The transfer is equal to the DVD. And the movie itself is still good, although it doesn't have quite the impact as it does on first viewing. I still dig the group dynamic, and anyone who says there's "no acting" in this film is dead wrong. I can only sit through this about once a year. It makes great Halloween viewing.

    Still hope to get a few more LDs in by the end of the month. In particular, Night of the Living Dead, and maybe Horror of Dracula. Haven't spun my Curse of Frankenstein disc in a couple of years, maybe that will get played instead.
     
  11. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    I agree about EXORCIST and NIGHTMARE LD's. Exorcist looked and sounded amazing and I regret selling it. NIGHTMARE, besides that hot gatefold, did look murky and smeary. I'm surprised it got thru quality control!
    Good choices!
     
  12. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    #25
    THE HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL (Castle/Price)
    The vintage B/W bug hits me every Autumn. This letterboxed LD is immaculate, sharp and just all-around cool. The sound is a little better than the Warner DVD. Fun flick needs no summary. A classic for the whole family. :p
     
  13. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    #26
    THE THING - From Another World
    Although not as sharp as the DVD, the picture in this disc is pretty good. What makes this LD a keeper, however, are the extras: the complete story "Who Goes There?" (the characters have those cool names featured in the 1982 Carpenter film), many stills and marketing items...I got all excited for the film just by looking at everything!
    By the way, for a classic well-known film, this was the first time I actually sat and watched this "thing" beginning to end. The final dialogue "watch the skies..." was chilling. I can see why this one is so well-loved (after taking it for granted all these years - lesson learned).
     
  14. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    #27
    NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD
    Awesome double-disc very special edition from Elite. This is one of those rare LD's that are a hair from matching DVD clarity. The sound is certainly better than the DVD (from my TV speakers, that is.)
    What can I say that hasn't been said about this very scary movie? How about: if only they ALL could have stuck it out until morning...and avoided the so-called rescue :fire: .
    Scary without being all gloomy-doomy and well-made.
    Oddly, the DVD I have from Elite has some weird editing throughout. It seems there's a split-second pause between many shots. I didn't notice that in the LD version. Whichever version you do have, watch it!
     
  15. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    #28
    FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN
    Terrific, wild film from Criterion. Picture is a tad grainy in outdoor scenes, but overall not bad. Although the latest DVD from Image is much, much clearer and smoother, I prefer the more-vibrant colors on the LD. Colors on the DVD are more life-like, but here things like the liquids in the lab beekers and the castle's interiors stand out much more.
    The still file plays itself (I love not having to toggle each frame) to the terrific soundtrack score.
     
  16. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    This one will definitely be dropped into my player in the next couple of nights. And that still gallery is jaw-dropping, even if you have to keep toggling through them. The full-color photos are worth the price of the disc alone.
     
  17. Agent Z

    Agent Z "Get to the river...

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    Last edited: Oct 29, 2007
  18. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    Ooooooh yah - I'll be hittin' up the Roan DEMONS discs myself this eve. I was up until 2 a.m. last night (and up at 6:15 to start for work) but I squeezed in:

    #28
    BLOOD FOR DRACULA
    The Criterion LD looks really great. Actually, I don't know if this one counts as #28 because I was up shredding old bills while the movie played on. I had to watch the still file without sound (due to having close proximity neighbors). Still, I love the film and the disc looks great. Some close-ups of Dracula are very luminous. Ironically, on the news earlier was a piece on Vampires of the cinema and the guy showed clips of all the cool ones! "Vampire Lovers", "Horror of Dracula" basically the whole genre. Yes, BLOOD FOR DRACULA was featured; where they focused on the films' outrageous attributes including the Italian handyman with the Brooklyn accent :). The clips showed, however, made my LD look like HD.
    I may go Beyond 31 discs - finally getting my money's worth on the damn things.
     
  19. Agent Z

    Agent Z "Get to the river...

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  20. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    This has been a fun little exercise, even though I'll get nowhere near 31. Even 10 is more LDs in a month than I usually watch. I wonder what I would have been able to accomplish if it were not for my film festival (which obliterated 9 days on the festival alone, not counting preparation and recovery), my love of sports and baseball playoffs, and the fact that I do have an active dating life.

    I'll still spin a couple more in the next two days. Maybe three days even.
     

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