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4.7 out of 5 stars
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4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 7 June 2014
As well reported, the 2009 Blu-Ray release of TGBU was marred by some PQ issues, namely DNR was liberally used throughout the film, to wipe away some (but not all) of the grain inherent with the film stock TGBU was shot in. However, I did not find the DNR to be nowhere near as bad as some other infamous Blu-Ray titles, such as 'Predator: Ultimate Edition', 'Gladiator' and 'Patton'; for instance, actors did not appear waxy in the 2009 TGBU release, as was the case in those other aforementioned Blu-Ray releases. Overall, while far from perfect, I found the picture to be reasonably good-looking for a film of its age, film stock and budget. That being said, a film of this caliber cries out for an extensive remastering, à la Lowry Digital.

Sans Lowry, the new 2014 Blu-Ray remaster of TGBU has, for the most part, rectified the DNR issue, with DNR being used far more discreetly this go-around. Overall, the 2014 release has a nice, crisp look; whether this is attributable to the 4K scan or the lack of DNR, I can only guess. Is it sharper than the 2009 release? At times, it is indeed ... but not always. This is not surprising to me, given the film's age and the film stock it was shot on. Still, sharpness looks very good ... the best it has ever looked on any version of home video.

That was the good news. The bad news? Unfortunately, the remastering has also given TGBU a different color timing scheme. Now, the film's cinematography has a yellow and teal tint, with orange overtones for the actors, giving the film a more modern look, at the expense of changing the distinctive look of the original film. In general, the colors are punchier in the 2014 release when compared to the 2009 release; too bad the punchier colors are all tinted in yellow, orange and teal. Furthermore, the 2014 version also looks darker, likely a result of lowering gamma on the remaster; a darker picture can give the illusion of increased sharpness, but it also swathes scenes in shadows that were previously quite visible in earlier video releases.

Why do this to all of your catalog title releases, 20th Century Fox? From Alien Quadrilogy, to the French Connection, to the recent release of The R&H box set, someone over at Fox is convinced that all older films should be swathed in teal and/or orange/yellow.

Of note, according to recent reviews I have read, this new tint is what Sergio Leone had supposedly intended the film to look like, via second-hand information from an assistant cameraman who worked with the director and the cinematographer; of course, since both the original cinematographer and the director are long dead, there is no way to truly confirm this (at least George Lucas had the excuse of being alive when he started to second-guess his past work). At any rate, whatever the "intended" look might have been, this is not what the finished film has traditionally looked like since its original release ... a few Italian Technicolor prints, notwithstanding.

(For screenshot comparisons, check out "The Man With No Name" trilogy review at Blu-ray dotcom; they loved the new remaster, FYI).

As far as audio is concerned for TGBU, the 2014 version is the same as the 2009 version, complete with souped-up sound effects.

Also of note, the traditional 161 minute cut of TGBU is not included in any Blu-Ray release, including this new 2014 release; it can still only be had via the 1998 16x9 anamorphically-enhanced DVD.

So to sum up, choosing which Blu-Ray version to own of TGBU is a strictly a matter of taste. Which version of TGBU you prefer is what will determine your choice of releases; personally, I feel the 2009 release of the film is a far more accurate representation of the film's original cinematography than this new yellow/teal-ified version. Yes, PQ is sharper and more colorful in the 2014 release, but that's certainly not enough for me to get past the altered look of the film. For the record, the new look isn't awful, mind you; it just makes the film look different. If you wish to have a different-looking version of TGBU, then the 2014 version is the one to pick up.

In fact, for casual viewers who do not own prior releases, I will put aside my biases and recommend that they pick up the 2014 release over the 2009 release, as they will likely care about (and notice) sharpness and color saturation in PQ, more so than a change in color timing.

Please, 20th Century Fox ... stop the blue/teal/yellow/orange madness, and release your catalog films in their original color timing!
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on 28 January 2012
This film without doubt is one of the best westerns ever made. Clint,lee, eli give masterfull yet humorous performances. The music on it's own is great to listen to. I have seen this film, more than 10 times and haven't tired of it and never will....BUY IT
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on 11 December 2000
This masterpiece is the film which defines the Spaghetti Western. Clint Eastwood is good guy Blondie and the other two main characters, Tuco (Eli Wallach) and Angel Eyes (Lee Van Cleef) veer between bad and ugly over the two and half hour duration of this film. The plot is long and winding, but is essentially fairly simple - three guys who don't trust each other trying to get their hands on a consigment of gold. We all know about the music - and Morricone's soundtrack is an undisputed masterpiece. If there is a better marriage of sound and vision in cinema than the last 15 minutes of this film, I have yet to see it. But it's more than just a music video - the direction from the legendary Sergio Leone is out of this world. This is an epic in every sense of the word - the battle against good and bad, a cast of hundreds in the Civil War scenes and camera work which makes no concessions to TV and uses the entire length of the screen. The DVD is good, too. The picture and sound quality are out of this world. The 15 minutes of deleted scenes add nothing, but are a nice curio. You also get the original theatrical trailer. So this isn't a DVD to buy for fancy bells and whistles, but it delivers in spades on the top-quality basics - ie perfect sound and vision. A masterpiece.
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on 11 June 2014
OK you may have read about the transfer. I watched this on my Samsung 1080P projector and the image was 14ft diagonal. As such the screen blisters with detail you have never seen on previous releases. There has been much debate about the new grade. Although an assistant on the film was involved I think that the colour is off as the sky looks green not blue in certain shots and the white on the titles is yellowed. However, I was able to pay with the colour values on the projector and return the image to something I would approximate as "natural". I admit this is "My" interpretation and it worked for me - you may like the new colour palette.

Once this is done, the film looks AMAZING. Its a great movie anyway and seeing it so crystal and sharp - far better definition on detail than the previous release - really made the screen come alive

The extras and menu are just lazy. They are ported over from the original version and I would have hoped that Clint and Eli could have been coaxed to record a commentary even if it were separately and edited as a single track As they are both alive and very lucid its a massive opportunity wasted and probably the last time they will be able to get them. I saw Eli at a screening of the film in 2006 and he stated "I have never been asked to do a commentary - I don't know why?" 8 year son and he still hasn't apparently?

If you don't own the movie in HD buy it NOW. If you do its worth a double dip if you can live with the new colouring or change your display manually. All of this is from my point of view if you disagree fair enough I will accept your opinion. Please accept mine as mine.
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The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly is the third in the 'spaghetti western' trilogy starring Clint Eastwood and made by Sergio Leone. Some think it is the weakest, but it has probably the most atmosphere with the best score. It is an essential part of everyone's Western collection.

The special edition DVD I bought in 2005 is still watched by us a couple of times a year on those wet afternoons when there is nothing on TV, and the 5.1 sound and (2.35:1 in 16:9 format) picture quality on this remastered and extended Special Edition is much better than the earlier releases, with clean sharp images and almost no hop or weave. The extras on the second disc are also worth a look.
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on 16 March 2004
The special edition DVD is finally here. It has been eagerly awaited, for never has such a fine picture graced a digital versatile disc.
This film has everything that defines a classic. Frankly it remains under-rated even though it is highly respected.
My personal favourite from Leone, and certainly Morricone, the film doesn't pull you along, it pushes you along, and you don't want it to stop.
Eastwood is entirely enjoyable to watch, and never is there a dull moment. The slower scenes perfectly build the tension, and the resolutions are always pleasing - not in a manic explosion of a climax, with explosions, bullets and Hollywood-director-boat only scrapes a rock and then explodes - scenes, but with the expert craftsmanship of Sergio Leone, and he makes you wait and then beg for what's coming. And by God, you won't be able to keep yourself from smiling.
This film brings out all the things you want to see in a western. The music does nothing but compiment the action, the photography is graceful yet enjoyably stylish, the dialogue is well written, with a few one liners that have outshined the others for years, and wow, the film is just great.
I do not believe i have ever sat through a film with a better ending scene. THE climax of cinema. BRILLIANT!
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on 25 April 2004
DON'T FIX WHAT ISN'T BROKEN!
From the start let me say I love this filmbut sadly the new scenes are quite frankly laughable. The overdubbing oftheir own parts from the remaining living actors do not work.
There is no other way to put it. Do not get me wrong this film has to bemy all time favourite but the additional scenes turn it now into acomplete joke.
Clint Eastwood overdubbing his own deleted Italian release scenes soundsnothing like himself from 1966, Eli Wallach (The Ugly) is a croaky old manand struggles to have the same mischevious chuckle to his voice from theoriginal film.
This is not a big let down, however the suprising bonusand a factor which works extremely well is Lee Van Cleef's newly restoredparts, which do work and his voice is ALMOST spot on. This is suprisingbecause he died in 1989, 13 years before he was required to voice over hisItalian dubbed scenes. The actor who did his part was pretty much spot onmore so then Clint's or Eli's. I am not blaming Clint or Eli but the truthis and the studio should have realised this that a sound a like actorwould have been much much better. There voices after nearly 40 years havechanged to much. What we end up with on the extra scenes is basicallyClint Eastwood doing a naff Clint Eastwood impression. I so wanted thiselement to work but I am afraid it does not. To cap it all the extrascenes do not 'blend' in with the rest of the film.It switches from monoto stereo so noticably.
Unfortunately it gets worse.
The studio that remastered the film decided to upgrade the soundtrack.This led to certain limitations, i.e the original sound effects (gunshots)were mixed on the same track as the music. Obviously they have to keep themusic so they had to re-do the sound effects. Big Big mistake, what we endup with now is a tinny "blat" for ALL the gun shots in the film. In myopinion ruining the impact of certain key scenes.
There is an interesting additional scene involving Tuco's meeting with thethree bandits who sneak up to Blondies room but on reflection you can seewhy the director Sergio Leone had it cut to the editing room floor.
Thecommentary is painfull, it is by a film critic who spends ages getting tothe point about a certain scene which has by then been and gone and hespends most of his time saying "ermmm" or/and "errrrr" What he doeseventually come up with is fairly interesting but takes such afrustratingly long time about it.
The extras basically skip over the film and it's content pretty quickly,having said that I was amazed at how unrecognizable Eli Wallach is now inthe interviews, which was kind of sad.
All in all I think the film should have been left alone, I am so glad Ikept my original copy on DVD but I do feel in some way that it is a bonusto have the special edition just to throw new light on one of the bestfilms ever made.
Incidentally if you ever wondered where the composer (Ennio Morricone) gotthe idea for the main sound effect in the theme tune. In other words the'Ahheeahheeahhh'. What is the first noise you hear in the film after themain opening credits?
Thats right a coyote.
Little snippits of information like that make this DVD fairlyworthwhile.
As a bonus I hate DVD's with hidden extras or 'Easter Eggs' as they liketo call them. With this one they are not hard to find and when you do findthem they are certainly not worth bothering with.
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on 18 April 2013
I award 2 stars for the packaging & at least getting a look at the 'fully restored version'.,but knock 3 off for a lousy video transfer.. lacks a polished sheen which the first two in the series have,lousy audio.. totally synthesised sounding and without a dts like the first two of the series have, and without an option to watch the movie without the 'restored' scenes.
All this quite absurd as disc two emphasises the efforts made to restore both video & audio.,just like with the first two of the trilogy series.(which do come off better even though they are older movies!!)
Overall very sloppy & I wouldn't have bought this edition if it wasn't for the completest in me.
I cannot recommend.
I'm sure the third spaghetti was made deliberately awful to tempt prospective buyers into purchasing the bd sets!!
Wazza
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on 3 January 2016
Arguably the best Western ever made. Faultlessly directed, superb actors. Clint Eastwood is a superb actor and this shines through in this. But the other major actors (Eli Wallach as Tuco) and (Lee Van Clef as Angel Eyes) are superb too and their performances are excellent.

I've watched this many times from VHS video, DVD and now to this 2014 remastered blu ray version. The picture and sound quality are absolutely stunning. The sharpness and detail is incredible for what is a 50 year old film and at a little over £8 it is ridiculously good value. Also, I found the colours to be very natural and nice and vivid. I cannot see any yellow cast that other reviewers have mentioned (perhaps you need to alter your TV's picture settings)!

Also, there is in excess of 1hour 30 minutes of extras. I've only part watched them but what I have watched so far which were interviews with Clint Eastwood, Eli Wallach and the Producer of The Good The Bad And The Ugly, have been extremely interesting, with all their stories they tell on the making of it, which goes even more to make this ridiculously good value.
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on 13 May 2012
Without doubt this is the greatest western ever made and when I found out this was the fully restored version I was doubly excited to buy it on Blu-ray. It's a disappointment though. Over 30 mins of extra material has been added but it's almost all pointless and instead of enhancing the film detracts from the original, especially in terms of pace and focus.

The voicing is also bizarre. Clint and Eli Wallach returned to add their own voices - but with a 40 year gap they now sound frail, like the old men they are. The effect is jarring. More bizarre still is that Lee Van Cleef's lines have been added by a 'soundalike' who does an uncanny impression. The effect is the one person not voiced by himself (i.e. LVC) sounds more like he does in the rest of the film than the actors supplying their own voices!

Overall, it's OK but I wish studios would release films in such a way that you can watch either the original or the extended version. The choice would be nice! Instead you're stuck with the unsatisfactory restored version and in this case less is more.
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