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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best!
If you can see past the ending of this film (pretty poor...) you will have witnessed one of the best westerns ever made.

ps its in B&W as thats how it was filmed.
Published on 13 Sep 2007 by Paul Smith

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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars poor transfer
The importance and quality of this movie is beyond doubt. But the transfer of this dvd is rather poor. There are mistakes as in an old film-copy, and the resolution especially with bright landscapes ist rather low. The sound is so faint I had to turn the tv on maximum volume.
Published on 1 May 2008 by Ralf Bader


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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars poor transfer, 1 May 2008
By 
Ralf Bader (Germany) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Red River [DVD] [1949] (DVD)
The importance and quality of this movie is beyond doubt. But the transfer of this dvd is rather poor. There are mistakes as in an old film-copy, and the resolution especially with bright landscapes ist rather low. The sound is so faint I had to turn the tv on maximum volume.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best!, 13 Sep 2007
This review is from: Red River [DVD] [1949] (DVD)
If you can see past the ending of this film (pretty poor...) you will have witnessed one of the best westerns ever made.

ps its in B&W as thats how it was filmed.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Red River Blu-Ray, 19 Nov 2013
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This is the best copy of Red River I have ever seen.The copy is far superior to the standard DVD I have.I have got just about all the John Wayne westerns and this is a great classic.The Blu-Ray is worth the upgrade.

Ken Barrett
Mooroolbark
Vic Australia
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Review of the Blu-Ray, 9 Jan 2014
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Howard Hawks film is one of the classics in spite of the corny ending. This Blu-ray in the masters of cinema collection comes with a nice 56 page booklet and a couple of good extras on the disc: the radio adaptation with Wayne and Brennan and a lengthy conversation about the film with a couple of film critics. Trouble is the picture quality is only marginally better than the DVD version I already have, so unless you want the extras I wouldn't bother upgrading.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Red River - In Colour!, 28 Aug 2011
I saw a colourised version of this classic western on tv today, so I am thinking it exists in dvd as well, and may be a Ted Turner Productions version.Can we please have it made available for us to buy?
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SON OF A GUN (-MAN), 5 Feb 2003
By 
Daniel S. "Daniel" (Geneva, Switzerland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Red River [DVD] [1949] (DVD)
Just a scene access and various subtitles as bonus features of the RED RIVER MGM DVD presentation. Meager. Furthermore, the copy chosen is not of the quality one could have expected from an eminent Hollywood studio. Shameful. Howard Hawks's RED RIVER is on my list of the ten best westerns ever made.
Against the legendary John Wayne, Montgomery Clift plays the character of the Duke's adopted son. His low-keyed performance is, in my opinion, unique at that pre-Marlon Brando time. From his first appearance as a young boy on, Howard Hawks characterizes him as -a man with a gun- and gives to this manly attribute a symbolic role throughout the entire movie. Hence, the relation Montgomery Clift-John Ireland can be read at a level invisible for the blind monks of the Hays Code.
A recurrent theme appearing in the Hawksian filmography is the theme of the Strong Woman. So let's admire the character of Joanne Dru who is not disturbed at all by the arrow stuck in her shoulder and who, later in the movie, is the only character who's got the guts to face John Wayne, the granite Father.
RED RIVER is a movie that must absolutely have a place in your library. It's a movie that has influenced a lot Steven Spielberg and company , it's a milestone in Movie History. It's a masterpiece.
A DVD zone reference.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All time classic., 10 Dec 2013
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One of the all time Howard Hawks classics of the western genre. Featuring John Wayne and the young newcomer, Montgomery Clift, in a story based on the forging of the Chisolm Trail from Texas to Kansas. Some marvellous photography. Even without the benefit of CGI the number of cattle especially in the stampede looks awesome. Black and white but, with its gripping story, well worth watching. This Blu-ray version is far superior to the DVD, with its improved resolution, contrast and quality of sound. Among the extras, the tÍte-à-tÍte between Don Sallit & Jaime N. Christley did not do a lot for me but the enclosed booklet was quite interesting. Over all it was well worth the money.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Take `em to Missouri, Matt", 23 Mar 2013
By 
GlynLuke (York UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Red River [DVD] [1949] (DVD)
Howard Hawks` 1948 masterpiece Red River is not just a great western, it`s one of the greatest of American movies.
Hawks, in his lifetime, was seldom accorded the respect and admiration he deserved, at least in his native land (never once nominated for an Oscar, despite excelling in several genres) and it took the French and a few discerning UK critics (such as David Thomson, who waxes lyrical about him whenever he has the chance) to trumpet the man`s worth. He was one of the best directors ever to draw breath.
His sense of composition alone marks him out. He could take your breath away with simply a shot of two men on horses against the sky, or Walter Brennan doling out bad food under a makeshift shelter in the rain.
This is a lengthy saga, in glorious black-and-white, of the many years it takes for Matthew Garth (Montgomery Clift, of all people, in his debut film) to attain his rite of passage into true manhood, and for his mentor Tom Dunson (John Wayne, at 40, and at his intense best) to recognise, forgive, and finally give Matt his own cattle brand.
Or it`s the story of a long, long cattle drive from Texas to Missouri, taking in Indian attacks, mutiny, Dunson`s growing tyranny, and a young lady played with candid sensuality by Joanne Dru (in her best role).
There again, it`s a film of treasurable moments. That pre-dawn calm before the cattle drive begins; Clift and John Ireland comparing gun sizes (oh, sure!) like kids; an arrow piercing Joanne Dru`s shoulder blade, her angry conversation with Matt barely interrupted; the shots of cattle hurling themselves at the camera; the chillingly matter-of-fact way Wayne tells two men "...gonna hang ya".
I could talk about this magnificent film for pages and hours, but you really have to see it (if you haven`t yet) then you`ll want to watch it on a fairly regular basis for the rest of your life.
Wayne was never so frightening (watch out for him as you bed down for the night, never mind the coyotes and snakes!), Clift looks liberated, Dru is just the ticket, Ireland is terrific, and Brennan knows exactly how far to take the mumbling old codger-friend bit. Listen to the ways he tells Dunson "You`re wrong..." and the way he knows how and when to keep quiet - things in the script of course, but things unscripted too.
I love this film more than I can say.

Take `em to Missouri, Matt!
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masters of Cinema Blu-ray # 68: Red River, 6 Nov 2013
By 
T Everson (Shropshire, England) - See all my reviews
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'Red River' is a Western film, released in 1948, and like all great films it appeals to people who wouldn't normally like films of that genre. In fact, next to John Ford's legendary 'The Searchers', this may well be one of the best examples of a Western film around.

In the brief prologue, we see Tom Dunson (John Wayne, in one of his most iconic roles) bid an emotional farewell to the woman he loves, and head to Texas with his companion Nadine Groot (Walter Brennan) where he aims to build the cattle ranch he'd been dreaming of whilst he was fighting in the Civil War. As they approach the river, they come across Matt Garth (Montgomery Clift), a young, bright man who has managed to survive an attack by the Indians.

We next meet Dunson fourteen years later, by which time he owns more cattle than anyone else in the West, but he's starting to run out of money. He decides to take 9000 cattle with him to Missouri, where cattle fetch a very high price. With a group of cowboys hired to help protect him and the cattle he heads off, but before long the men start asking questions of his leadership...

The film is directed by Howard Hawks, and was the first Western he had made, after building his reputation on films such as 'Scarface' (1932) and 'His Girl Friday' (1940). Because he hadn't become as synonymous with Westerns as John Ford, he was never really considered as serious a filmmaker as Ford, and for a long time 'Red River' was undeservedly overlooked. In reality, the film looks absolutely amazing, with sweeping landscapes - easily rivaling the very best of Ford's films. The stampede, one of the film's pivotal moments, is superbly shot and must have been an influence on 'The Lion King', almost 50 years later.

'Red River' is also notable as one of John Wayne's best films. Some of the subtle acting going on, especially in the scenes when he can see that he's losing the trust of his men, is fantastic. Even John Ford himself was impressed, famously stating after watching the film that "I didn't know the big sonofabitch could act!". It also features Montgomery Clift's first performance, before he went on to earn numerous Academy Award nominations.

The film is released by Eureka's Masters of Cinema label (surprisingly the first Western they've released), a label well renowned for the high standards of their DVD and Blu-ray packages. One of the big problems with the old 2000 DVD release was that the picture quality was very poor. That's been fully addressed with this release, with lots of detail revealed for the first time, and a healthy amount of grain on display. It really shows off Hawks' fantastic shots. The soundtrack is the original mono sound, and it's always clear and easy to understand the dialogue.

As for extras, there's a relaxed 45-minute conversation between Dan Sallitt and Jaime Christley. It's informative, and they show shots from the film as they discuss them. There's also a 59-minute Lux Radio Theatre adaptation of 'Red River' from 1949, featuring Wayne and Brennan reprising their roles. Last but not least is one of Masters of Cinema's trademark booklets, with 56 pages of contemporary writing about Hawks and the film's original release.

When originally released, there were two different versions of 'Red River' in cinemas. The longer, 133-minute version is here. The only slight regret with this release is that it doesn't include the shorter 127-minute version as well. But this is only a minor criticism. This is likely to be the definitive version of 'Red River' for many years to come, and I really hope that its popularity gets Masters of Cinema thinking about releasing some more classic Westerns.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Blu ray that could/should have been better..., 8 April 2014
By 
Brian V. Burford (UK) - See all my reviews
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I've had this a while, but have been so busy on a personal project that I saved it up until it was finished. Furthermore, I never bought the DVD because it was universally criticised for its poor transfer and puny sound. So I waited for the blu ray...well it's a classic film, right, so there had to be a blu ray release.

Most people know about the film and its plot, so I don't really see much point in going into that. However, Masters of Cinema have supposedly got a good reputation for the quality of their product, so all in all I shouldn't feel let down. But I do.

How can I put this, well, I have remastered DVDs of Gunsmoke which are superior to this. There is annoying line to the right of the screen that rarely disappears and although you can see little bits of detail like the shrubs on the hillside, close-ups don't really give much more detail than a standard definition DVD would - the B/W Dambusters is better than this. This is an old film and I don't know the bitrates and all that techy stuff, I just know when something isn't right and this isn't. Maybe I have a duff copy? When the broadcast version on your TV doesn't have these issues you have to wonder how much work they put into this. Is this the French transfer?

I'll wager that the forthcoming Criterion transfer in the USA is better and judging by what I've read on the Internet, there will be both versions of the film included, spread across two blu rays and two DVDs. Alas, you'll need a region A blu ray player for that.

This one comes with an interesting 56-page booklet and one of the extras is a Red River radio broadcast which is quite a bonus. But the two critics, whoever they are, well, quite frankly, total toss. As another reviewer suggested, a commentary would have been better, but preferably not by these two dorks. God they're so boring.

Overall, very disappointed. A grand film, one of Wayne's best, but let down by a transfer that could have been better.

** As a footnote to this, I'm so disappointed with this product that I have got in touch with Eureka/Masters of Cinema about a possible defective product, but have yet to receive a response of any kind.

2/7/2014 Further to the above, I have received a response from Eureka who deny that I could possibly have a defective disc. They also doubt that the vertical line I was talking about exists and requested I took a photo of it. This I couldn't do because I've off-loaded this edition, so disappointed was I. However, I have referred them to [...] for the review of the Criterion release in which the reviewer states some of the issues that I had with the Eureka release and says that Criterion has fixed these problems. Needless to say, Eureka have not responded in anyway to that.
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Red River [DVD] [1949]
Red River [DVD] [1949] by Howard Hawks (DVD - 2000)
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