More American Graffiti: Properly Framed, Properly Scored?
Has anyone seen the DVD, which is scheduled for release this Tuesday? In
view of the article quoted below, has Universal properly framed the DVD
and used the original theatrical music?
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More American Graffiti
The film contains four intermixed stories, each set in a slightly
different phase of the sixties.
In its original theatrical presentation, the segments featuring Paul Le
Mat and Candy Clark were presented in widescreen, while the segments
featuring Ron Howard/Cindy Williams and Charles Martin Smith were
presented in the middle of the screen with a squarish aspect ratio. It
would make sense that the latter two episodes should fill one's monitor.
The Ron Howard/Cindy Williams segment was intended to imitate a
television sitcom, and the Smith segment, which is set in Vietnam, was
filmed in 16mm and was intended to look like news footage. Ideally,
however, the Le Mat and the Clark segments should be letterboxed, but
only Clark's story--which is told in a psychedelic split-screen--is
presented that way.
The Le Mat segment, a fifties CinemaScope-like drag racing story, is
cropped, robbing not only that segment of its impact, but upsetting the
emotional balance of the entire program. Otherwise, the color transfer
is excellent (the Smith scenes are supposed to look as faded and grainy
as they appear).
The stereo surround sound has also been compromised, by changes to the
film's elaborate pop singles musical score.
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