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G. M. Watson 11-13-2004 09:06 AM

"W.C. Fields Comedy Collection"-- anyone viewed it yet?
 

Anyone viewed this collection yet? I'm wondering how the print quality is.
I'm also wondering why the hell "Never Give a Sucker an Even Break" wasn't
included, while "International House", which is as much a Burns/Allen
picture as a Fields, was. Great to have this material on DVD all the same,
especially "It's a Gift"-- been a long time coming. But I would like to hear
from someone who's got the set, so I have an idea of what to expect
qualitywise...

Derek Janssen 11-13-2004 12:53 PM

Re: "W.C. Fields Comedy Collection"-- anyone viewed it yet?
 
G. M. Watson wrote:
> Anyone viewed this collection yet? I'm wondering how the print quality is.
> I'm also wondering why the hell "Never Give a Sucker an Even Break" wasn't
> included, while "International House", which is as much a Burns/Allen
> picture as a Fields, was.


Given that "Million Dollar Legs" (also on Uni's Fields catalog) wasn't
on there either, safe guess--like their Abbott & Costello sets--this was
meant to be in pieces, and there'd be a Set 2 [Poppy, Man on the Flying
Trapeze] if this one sells.

(And if so, I can throw out "International" and "You Can't..." to make
room for "Never" and "Legs", and consolidate.)

> Great to have this material on DVD all the same,
> especially "It's a Gift"-- been a long time coming.


Having DVD-R'ed my old VHS copy, it's a rewarding feeling to throw it
out for the "real" version.

> But I would like to hear
> from someone who's got the set, so I have an idea of what to expect
> qualitywise...


Came out on the same Universal assembly line as the Marx Brothers set,
so no major difference--
Crisp looking prints, good subtitles, no extras to speak of except for
trailers...Nothing on the Warners' vintage level, but one for the shelf.

Derek Janssen (capital D, small e...well, you know the drill)
djanss@charter.net

Stephen Cooke 11-13-2004 04:29 PM

Re: "W.C. Fields Comedy Collection"-- anyone viewed it yet?
 

On Sat, 13 Nov 2004, Derek Janssen wrote:

> G. M. Watson wrote:
> > Anyone viewed this collection yet? I'm wondering how the print quality is.
> > I'm also wondering why the hell "Never Give a Sucker an Even Break" wasn't
> > included, while "International House", which is as much a Burns/Allen
> > picture as a Fields, was.

>
> Given that "Million Dollar Legs" (also on Uni's Fields catalog) wasn't
> on there either, safe guess--like their Abbott & Costello sets--this was
> meant to be in pieces, and there'd be a Set 2 [Poppy, Man on the Flying
> Trapeze] if this one sells.
>
> (And if so, I can throw out "International" and "You Can't..." to make
> room for "Never" and "Legs", and consolidate.)



Does it have The Bank Dick on it? It'd be just like Universal to repeat a
title that's already been made available (oh well, my Criterion should
fetch a few bucks, if that's the case).

I can understand including International House...a slightly lesser title
to fill out the set and leave some other anticipated classics for vol. 2.
Besides, I *like* International House, for what it's worth. It's You're
Telling Me! and Man on the Flying Trapeze that I'm waiting for...

Just watch, they'll include The Big Broadcast of 1938 in the next
set...although I wouldn't mind Mississippi.

> > But I would like to hear
> > from someone who's got the set, so I have an idea of what to expect
> > qualitywise...

>
> Came out on the same Universal assembly line as the Marx Brothers set,
> so no major difference--
> Crisp looking prints, good subtitles, no extras to speak of except for
> trailers...Nothing on the Warners' vintage level, but one for the shelf.


I'm still grumbling about the Marx set. I might have been better off just
finding the two Image/Universal snappers I didn't have. There's probably a
ton of them on eBay now. Anyone compared the transfers of the new set with
the old discs from a decade ago?

swac
Grumble grumble...college widow scene...grumble mumble...


Card53 11-13-2004 05:57 PM

Re: "W.C. Fields Comedy Collection"-- anyone viewed it yet?
 
>> G. M. Watson wrote:
>> > Anyone viewed this collection yet? I'm wondering how the print quality

>is.
>> > I'm also wondering why the hell "Never Give a Sucker an Even Break"

>wasn't
>> > included, while "International House", which is as much a Burns/Allen
>> > picture as a Fields, was.

>>
>> Given that "Million Dollar Legs" (also on Uni's Fields catalog) wasn't
>> on there either, safe guess--like their Abbott & Costello sets--this was
>> meant to be in pieces, and there'd be a Set 2 [Poppy, Man on the Flying
>> Trapeze] if this one sells.


Also "The Old Fashioned Way," which I think ranks among his greatest. "You're
Telling Me" is right up there as well.

>>
>> (And if so, I can throw out "International" and "You Can't..." to make
>> room for "Never" and "Legs", and consolidate.)

>
>
>Does it have The Bank Dick on it? It'd be just like Universal to repeat a
>title that's already been made available (oh well, my Criterion should
>fetch a few bucks, if that's the case).


Yup, "Bank Dick" is in the set and the print looks to be the same (or at least
the same quality) as the Criterion edition.

>I can understand including International House...a slightly lesser title
>to fill out the set and leave some other anticipated classics for vol. 2.
>Besides, I *like* International House, for what it's worth. It's You're
>Telling Me! and Man on the Flying Trapeze that I'm waiting for...
>
>Just watch, they'll include The Big Broadcast of 1938 in the next
>set...although I wouldn't mind Mississippi.


If there is a next set, I'll be a happy man if it includes "You're Telling Me,"
"The Old-Fashioned Way," "The Man on the Flying Trapeze," and "Never Give a
Sucker an Even Break."

As for "Mississippi," the film is now in copyright limbo. If you taped the
film off of AMC years ago, hang on to your copy.

>> > But I would like to hear
>> > from someone who's got the set, so I have an idea of what to expect
>> > qualitywise...

>>
>> Came out on the same Universal assembly line as the Marx Brothers set,
>> so no major difference--
>> Crisp looking prints, good subtitles, no extras to speak of except for
>> trailers...Nothing on the Warners' vintage level, but one for the shelf.

>
>I'm still grumbling about the Marx set. I might have been better off just
>finding the two Image/Universal snappers I didn't have. There's probably a
>ton of them on eBay now. Anyone compared the transfers of the new set with
>the old discs from a decade ago?


I have the new set, but not the old Image editions for comparision. Word is
that the new discs are improved in quality, but not enough so to make the
upgrade worth it. Compared to prints I've seen in the past, I notice the most
improvement in Cocoanuts and Duck Soup, although there's not much they could do
with the spliced-in-from-a-battered-print scenes in Cocoanuts.

While I'm glad to have the Paramounts on DVD, the "Bonus Disc" is something of
a joke (at least this 6-disc set costs no more than the 5-disc Fields set). In
addition to the Today Show interviews, it would have been nice to include the
Marx's scene from the promotional short "The House that Shadows Built," the
color test footage from Animal Crackers, plus an assortment of public-domain
material and television appearances, of which there is a great deal.


John Larrabee
Co-founder: Laurel & Hardy Central
http://laurelandhardycentral.com

(To respond via e-mail, remove "nixspam")

Bill Coleman 11-13-2004 06:19 PM

Re: "W.C. Fields Comedy Collection"-- anyone viewed it yet?
 
That's exactly the grouping I'd like to see as well...
if there were more than 4, than Million Dollar Legs
and/or Tillie and Gus would be nice...but those would
be the main ones...

Bill Coleman

===================

"Card53" <card53@aol.comnixspam> wrote in message
news:20041113125710.06439.00000532@mb-m18.aol.com...
> If there is a next set, I'll be a happy man if it includes "You're Telling
> Me,"
> "The Old-Fashioned Way," "The Man on the Flying Trapeze," and "Never Give
> a
> Sucker an Even Break."




Stephen Cooke 11-13-2004 09:48 PM

Re: "W.C. Fields Comedy Collection"-- anyone viewed it yet?
 

On Sat, 13 Nov 2004, Derek Janssen wrote:

> Stephen Cooke wrote:
>
> >>Given that "Million Dollar Legs" (also on Uni's Fields catalog) wasn't
> >>on there either, safe guess--like their Abbott & Costello sets--this was
> >>meant to be in pieces, and there'd be a Set 2 [Poppy, Man on the Flying
> >>Trapeze] if this one sells.
> >>

> > Does it have The Bank Dick on it? It'd be just like Universal to repeat a
> > title that's already been made available (oh well, my Criterion should
> > fetch a few bucks, if that's the case).

>
> Yep--
> But no painful loss, since there were no extras or featurette on the
> Criterion either, and seems to be the same clean print.


I imagine this was the same case as other Criterion-licensed titles...the
digital video master came direct from the source (which I think is why
Yojimbo doesn't have its original stereo soundtrack).

> > I can understand including International House...a slightly lesser title
> > to fill out the set and leave some other anticipated classics for vol. 2.
> > Besides, I *like* International House, for what it's worth. It's You're
> > Telling Me! and Man on the Flying Trapeze that I'm waiting for...
> >
> > Just watch, they'll include The Big Broadcast of 1938 in the next
> > set...although I wouldn't mind Mississippi.

>
> A more comprehensive batch of obscure 30's Fields came out--ONCE--on Uni
> VHS 'bout five or six years ago: "Legs" was on the list (line up,
> suckers!), and think "Telling" was, but no "Mississippi".


Yep...I actually have the VHS copy of You're Telling Me. And as another
poster noted, Mississippi is in copyright limbo (sort of like
Hellzapoppin' and It Ain't Hay...which I think actually was on video at
one time) and I don't think it's ever been made available.

> > Grumble grumble...college widow scene...grumble mumble...

>
> [Assuming he's referring to "Horsefeathers"]
> I've NEVER seen a frame-complete version of that, even in theatrical
> prints, so don't shoot the messenger.


No, I know that no one's seen a complete version in 70 years...but there
are always those nagging rumours that a complete nitrate print exists out
there *somewhere*. Would it kill them to acknowledge that the scene has
been censored and include the script for the complete scene?

swac
I'm gonna channel S.J. Perelman at my next seance.


Derek Janssen 11-13-2004 10:07 PM

Re: "W.C. Fields Comedy Collection"-- anyone viewed it yet?
 
Stephen Cooke wrote:

>>Given that "Million Dollar Legs" (also on Uni's Fields catalog) wasn't
>>on there either, safe guess--like their Abbott & Costello sets--this was
>>meant to be in pieces, and there'd be a Set 2 [Poppy, Man on the Flying
>>Trapeze] if this one sells.
>>

> Does it have The Bank Dick on it? It'd be just like Universal to repeat a
> title that's already been made available (oh well, my Criterion should
> fetch a few bucks, if that's the case).


Yep--
But no painful loss, since there were no extras or featurette on the
Criterion either, and seems to be the same clean print.

> I can understand including International House...a slightly lesser title
> to fill out the set and leave some other anticipated classics for vol. 2.
> Besides, I *like* International House, for what it's worth. It's You're
> Telling Me! and Man on the Flying Trapeze that I'm waiting for...
>
> Just watch, they'll include The Big Broadcast of 1938 in the next
> set...although I wouldn't mind Mississippi.


A more comprehensive batch of obscure 30's Fields came out--ONCE--on Uni
VHS 'bout five or six years ago: "Legs" was on the list (line up,
suckers!), and think "Telling" was, but no "Mississippi".

This's mostly a vault cleanup for Uni, so they'll be going with whatever
came out on tape first.

> I'm still grumbling about the Marx set. I might have been better off just
> finding the two Image/Universal snappers I didn't have. There's probably a
> ton of them on eBay now. Anyone compared the transfers of the new set with
> the old discs from a decade ago?
>
> swac
> Grumble grumble...college widow scene...grumble mumble...


[Assuming he's referring to "Horsefeathers"]
I've NEVER seen a frame-complete version of that, even in theatrical
prints, so don't shoot the messenger.

Derek Janssen
djanss@charter.net

G. M. Watson 11-14-2004 10:15 AM

Re: "W.C. Fields Comedy Collection"-- anyone viewed it yet?
 


----------
In article <vesld.2198$b73.182@trndny04>, "Bill Coleman"
<nevermore@nowhere.com> wrote:


> That's exactly the grouping I'd like to see as well...
> if there were more than 4, than Million Dollar Legs
> and/or Tillie and Gus would be nice...but those would
> be the main ones...
>
> Bill Coleman
>
> ===================
>
> "Card53" <card53@aol.comnixspam> wrote in message
> news:20041113125710.06439.00000532@mb-m18.aol.com...
>> If there is a next set, I'll be a happy man if it includes "You're Telling
>> Me,"
>> "The Old-Fashioned Way," "The Man on the Flying Trapeze," and "Never Give
>> a
>> Sucker an Even Break."

>
>

Personally, in addition to everything already named in this and other posts,
I'd like to see "If I Had a Million" (which I used to often confuse with
"Million Dollar Legs") brought back into print. It's only got about 15
minutes of Fields, but they are priceless. It was last available, quite some
time back, in LD, I believe.I do have a semi-bootleg copy, but would welcome
an "official" one; the film contains enough other fine moments to more than
justify a re-release.
GMW


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