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This Is Cinerama [Blu-ray] [Import]

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Product Details

  • Format: NTSC, Import
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Studio: Flicker Alley
  • Release Date: Sept. 25 2012
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B008N3E016

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews

THIS IS CINERAMA [1952] [60th Anniversary Edition] [Deluxe Combo Blu-ray + DVD] [US Import] IT PLUNGES YOU INTO A STARTLING NEW WORLD!

On the evening of September 30, 1952, the shape and sound of movies changed forever with the introduction of Cinerama. This unique widescreen process was launched when television was deemed as a major threat to US film exhibition. Fred Waller, Cinerama's creator, had indeed laboured that long on his dream of a motion picture experience that would recreate the full range of human vision. It used three cameras and three projectors on a curved screen 146° deep.

In celebration of the 60th Anniversary of its premiere, Flicker Alley is proud to present THIS IS CINERAMA [1953 Academy Award® Winner], exactly as seen by over 20,000,000 viewers in its original roadshow version. You will travel around the world with Cinerama, from Venice to Madrid, from Edinburgh Castle to the La Scala opera house in Milan, and concluding with a flight across America in the nose of a B-25 bomber. Experience this cinema classic once again in this unique SMILEBOX curved screen simulation! Narrated by Lowell Thomas.

FILM FACT: 1953 Academy Award® for Scientific & Technical Award to Inventor Fred Waller for Development of Cinerama. This is Cinerama was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Music, Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture. Although the score was credited to Louis Forbes, who conducted the music, it was composed by Paul Sawtell, Max Steiner (who composed the opening credit sequences, Cypress Gardens, the Flight Across America, and the End Credits) and Roy Webb. In 2002, the Library of Congress deemed the film "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" and inducted it into the National Film Registry for permanent preservation.
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By Ernest Johnson on April 9 2013
Verified Purchase
This is quite an interesting journey in the history of film; we are taken on a film journey of the time and in Blu Ray you can enjoy a global trek in hi-def.
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By P. C. Hutley on Nov. 16 2012
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How wonderful to relive this first Cinerama film, restored so well by the talented crew. Unfortunately it wasn't available Region Free so I had to purchase a Region A player as well as the Blu-ray itself, but if a film means so much to you, you do it. The roller coaster ride was unforgettable and my other personal favourite was the Temple Dance from Aida, then the ballet during the grand march and chorus scene.You never forget the impact of a Cinerama production as a young person, much like Imax and Imax 3D today.When Cinerama came out to Australia we already had seen Cinemascope and Todd-AO, but it had quite a different effect, drawing you into the movemet. All together a great product and historically so important. Peter Hutley, Newcastle, Australia.
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By COLIN on Nov. 15 2012
Verified Purchase
iiiiiiiIts been many many years since as a young lad i first saw this movie in London at the Casino Theatre and like many others was knocked out by it - loved proper widescreen movies ever since [its not widescreen today, just a cheap ripoff], this version goes a long way via the SMILEBOX image to restore somewhat how it felt if you were sitting in the rear stalls, i actually sat in about the eigth row from the front stalls - inside the curve of the screen! The sound system also was fantastic unlike anything ever heard before in a cinema {the early Fox Cinemascope movies of the middle fifties used Directional Stereo Sound also very thrilling and lifelike - Dolby Digital has never matched that experience] The restoration of this film considering the lack of resorses is quiet outstanding [thanks again to original Technicolor stock being used instead of Eastman or De-Luxe.For the new generation who have never seen CINERAMA or for the older generation who would love to re live the thrill all over again then you can do no worse than treat yourself to this fantastic dvd.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 75 reviews
64 of 68 people found the following review helpful
After such a long wait - CINERAMA Comes To Home Video Aug. 26 2012
By Lawrence C. Dupont - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
My first introduction to Cinerama was in NYC in 1955, I was 11 years old. A family trip to the Big Apple. Sitting in the 3rd row from the screen, surrounded by wine colored curtains, waiting for the show to start. I noticed 3 projection booths on the orchestra floor. Not knowing what Cinerama was, I thought it might be a new type of three dimension process. The lights went down, a b&w mono sound prologue starts. After about 10 minutes into the prologue, I started to get bored. Nothing different about this movie. Then the narrator said "Ladies and Gentlemen, enjoy your Cinerama Holiday". The horizontal masking started to rise, the wine colored curtains started to open wider and kept going and going. We were flying through the sky, surrounded in picture and sound. WOW, WE DON'T HAVE THIS BACK HOME"
Since that Saturday night at the Stanley Warner Times Square theater, I have been a big time fan of Cinerama. Making sure I saw everything and any thing that was released in Cinerama. In 1996, my wife and I drove for 24 hours (1400 miles) to see a come back of Cinerama in Dayton, Ohio. I flew to Seattle for the "Reel Cinerama Festival". I have been to Pacific's Cinerama Theater (fondly refered to as the Cinerama Dome)to see Cinerama productions.
When "How The West Was Won" was released in "SmileBox" on Blu-Ray, I was over joyed. Now "This Is Cinerama", the first Cinerama production which changed forever the way we look at movies will be in my Cinerama Collection. I am a big Cinerama memorabella collector. I have one entire wall in my home theater dedicated to Cinerama. I can hardly wait to see it on my 92" diaganal screen. The Blu-Ray 1080p picture will show the great depth of field high quality photography Cinerama was famous for.
"This Is Cinerama" has no stars, no plot, but was the highest grossing box office hit of 1952, and it was playing in only one theater. "This Is Cinerama" gives you a breif history of motion pictures, takes you across our beautiful country and around the world. All in the "you are there" magic of the Cinerama Process. Cinerama definately "Puts You In The Picture" Thanks to the "Smile Box" process, it will look like you are watching on a curved screen, which adds to the enjoyment of the film so much.
I recommend "This Is Cinerama" to anyone who is a Cinerama fan, movie buff or just wants to own a piece of American Cinema history.
Yes it is not the same as seeing Cinerama in a Cinerama movie theater, but it is a great experience for any Cinerama fan, and there are thousands of us. No, tens of thousands of Cinerama fans around the world today.
You can have the full Cinerama experience this coming month, Sept 28 - Oct 04, 2012. The Pacific Cinerama Theater in Hollywood, Ca will be having a week long festival in celebration of the 60th anniversary of the first public showing of Cinerama on Sept. 30, 1952. Twelve Cinerama Productions will be shown. Plus a new Cinerama film just completed called "In The Picture" This marks the first time that actual Cinerama cameras have been used in over 50 years. Five productions will be shown in the original 3 strip film process, Three digital presentations from the original 3 strip films, two digital productions from the 65mm prints and one presented in 70mm Ultra Panavision. All presented on the full 129 degree curved Cinerama screen. I beleive the screen dimensions are 89' wide and 32' high. I might be a little off on the screen size.
38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
It's been a long time in coming! July 30 2012
By Rick D. Barszcz - Published on Amazon.com
I was one of the last projectionest to run this monster called Cinerama. It was a thrill. Of course this also shows my age. You will not be disappointed by this film and the vast places that this film will take you on your two hour travel log. The smile box format will give you the impression of what a curved screen feels like. If you would like to see a preview of the film go to You Tube - This is Cinerama. Enjoy
47 of 51 people found the following review helpful
A long time coming! July 21 2012
By William R. Moore - Published on Amazon.com
The BluRay release of "This Is Cinerama" is presented in the amazing SmileBox format, just like "How The West Was Won." The legions of Cinerama fans have been waiting for this release for what seems like a lifetime, so I rejoice that that time is near. When I was in high school, I had the privilege of working in a Cinerama theatre in Wichita, Kansas and I remember all of these wonderful films. The Cinerama process wasn't perfect visually, since one could see the lines where the three pictures joined on that huge curved screen, but once you became involved in what was going on, the lines seemed to disappear. And what spectacular sound! A full seven channels of directional stereophonic sound, coming at you from every direction and being reproduced on a separate audio magnetic playback machine. This was indeed thrilling cinema and was many years ahead of it time both artistically and technically.
There is a You-Tube preview of this release which was put together by David Strohmier and a host of other Cinerama "geeks" so if you haven't seen this yet, check it out. You will be amazed!
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
This is Cinerama Blu-Ray Oct. 1 2012
By Paul Enchelmayer - Published on Amazon.com
The package includes two discs. First is the Blu-ray of the movie and all the extras. The second disc is a two-sided DVD. One side is the movie (also in Smilebox format) and the other side contains all the extras. Also included is a booklet copy of the opening night program with a lot of information about the Cinerama process, Lowell Thomas and several of the men involved in creating the film, production photos of the filming, and more.

The color and sharpness quality of the film is much higher than I ever expected. In the "making of" extra David Strohmaier and Greg Kimble explain in pretty good detail how they were able to pull natural color out of extremely faded scenes, remove the scratches, and reassemble the multitude of scenes into a presentation as close to the original presentation as possible.

"Smilebox" - love it or hate it. Frankly, I cannot think of any other way to present Cinerama films and remove some of the tremendous distortion inherent in showing the 3-panel film on a flat screen. I had seen the Blu-Ray "How the West Was Won" and was used to the Smilebox format, but newcomers might not like it at first and see it as a gimmick of some sort.

The stereo and fidelity of the sound is also startling. The guys at Chace Audio handled that part of the restoration and the result is worthy of a new soundtrack CD album.

This is a film you should watch on as large a screen as possible, and do sit closer to the screen than usual. The Smilebox seems to work best when you do. After you watch it all the way through, watch it again later with the audio commentary turned on. Strohmaier and others provide 2 hours of very informative facts and even trivia of behind the scenes stories on each scene.

The only reason I don't give it a full five stars is the entertainment value of the content. It's simply a man presenting an illustrated lecture on the wonders of a new film process (as truly amazing a process as it is, especially at the time). Today's young audience may find it incredibly boring with no plot or message and be puzzled by its fame.

But as someone who saw several Cinerama films in theaters back in the day, I think this is as close to the experience as possible. I say give us more!
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
A good Blu-Ray but... Sept. 26 2012
By Chris Blount - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
The new This Is Cinerama Blu-ray is an excellent blast from the past. The video is crips and clear. Audio is also excellent. Be sure to view the restoration video in the extras menu. It shows the painstaking process they used to restore the movie to its original beauty.

I must say I'm very much impressed how they restored the film considering what they had. My only complaint is that, due to budget contstraints, they were not able to use the original three panel negatives to do this restoration. They used a 65mm composite (one strip of film) that was used in the 1973 revival (took one star off for that. Hey, I'm a purist :) ).

With that said however, if you project this Blu-Ray up on a large screen (100" or bigger), it looks spectacular and gives you the general feeling of what it was like in the original Cinerama theaters. They color corrected everything, took out blemishes and balanced each panel to look exactly the same. You can still see the lines but after a while you won't notice them because they really aren't all that bad.

Bravo to the folks who restored this film. It's just about as close as you can get to Cinerama in your home. If you have been wanting to see this film in all its glory, buy this Blu-Ray now. This is the best way to watch the film at home.

By the way, for all of you Apple fans, the entire feature was restored and edited on a Mac with Final Cut Pro.

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