The four stars are an accurate rating of the transfer quality of most of the films in this collection. A few rate five stars ("Vertigo", "The Birds" and "Rear Window", for example).
But there are real defects in two of the titles in this set: Both "Marnie" and "Family Plot" were given slipshod transfers. "Marnie" particularly (a film I consider one of Hitchcock's masterpieces) has visual specks throughout, and some scenes of "weak" color. If you don't believe me, just go to a scene mid-way in the film and freeze the frame on a closeup. You'll see what seems a shabby grill on the faces. The images aren't clear and seemingly form a grill pattern. ("Frenzy" also exhibits flaws but not as seriously as those two.) These problems are obviously due to a lack of quality control in mastering these discs. To see the difference compare these two titles to "The Birds" or "Rear Window" and check the clarity and brightness of their color images in a freeze-frame. This crappy transferring is reprehensible for Universal in not taking the proper care to make sure the master Hitchcock has been given the treatment he deserves. They made so much money from the great works by this brilliant filmmaker they could have at least given ALL these films the highest quality treatment in Blu-ray technology!
This is certainly a trivial point, but also demonstrating Universal's inherent sloppiness, is that on a few of the discs, the spectacular new Universal corporate logo is actually shown TWICE in a row through an error in the disc making!
Most of the other discs are very good to superb, but these two (and some transferring flaws in "Frenzy" as well) could be enough for many to reject this set. I won't return it because most of the discs are essential to anyone's collection at it is, but I will continue to hope that in the future a new Blu-ray master of "Marnie" will be redone and made available in a beautiful transfer! UNIVERSAL OWES IT TO EVERYONE WHO LOVES THE ART OF CINEMA!
The technicians at Universal who are responsible for these shabby transfers should be ashamed of themselves!
PS: Many chastise reviewers for lowering the rating of great films because of flaws in the quality of the discs; They say only the film should be rated. I agree with them for the most part. But still, the low quality of several of these disc transfers, I think, should properly reflect at least one star lower to warn buyers. I admit if these discs were all superb the set would inarguably garner 5 stars by anyone remotely interested in film. These movies are among the greatest in the history of cinema. They ALL need to handled with the utmost of care as if they were treasures (which they are!).