I saw this film in one of those Cinerama theaters in 1963 as a kid and was mightily impressed, but was disturbed by the lines which appeared on the huge screen created by the use of 3 cameras working in sync. They also produce distortion to some images esp. when subjects move quickly from one segment of the screen to the adjacent ones.
For close to 50 years I had been waiting to see this significant problem resolved and I am happy to say with the latest digital transfer to BR, this problem virtually disappears.
Well, 95 % of it. The lines still exist in the Mexican army scene and create some distortion in the pony express scene. That having said, the picture quality is now truly breath taking, all images are sharp and brilliant, better than many many films done in recent years.
It is as if National Geographic had a hand on its production....
It's just too bad the film with an aspect ratio of 2.89:1 has not been enhanced to fit wide screen TVs and one is left with huge bars on the top and bottom. Minor complaint really. This movie is impressive.
And on disc 2, a Smilescreen version simulates the Cinerama experience of a "curved" screen. A digital modern day gimmick, one needs a real Cinerama screen to experience the thrill.
The story and characters are probably familiar to those who love westerns, so sit back and enjoy some of the best cinematography (and music) ever put on screen......