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Old 05-22-2016, 07:14 AM   #1
bigshot bigshot is offline
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United Kingdom Sign of the Four / Hound of the Baskervilles (Second Sight) 1983

Tonight I screened the recent blu-ray release of Sign of the Four with Ian Richardson as Holmes. The film looked decent, but not terribly spectacular. The shadows were pretty opaque and there was quite a bit of grain and not a lot of sharpness, but it looked good for what it is.

I was very impressed with the actors... Holmes and Watson were perfectly balanced (one not overly serious and the other not too bumbling). The locations were great, especially the carnival where the villains hide out. The chase on the Thames was very suspenseful too, which is quite a trick for a steamboat race. Overall I thought it was an awful lot of fun.

They handled the story more as an adventure tale than a mystery. We see what is happening before Holmes is even brought in, and he is deducing things we already know, rather than having us deduce along with him. That worked very well for the film. Everything was clear and well paced.

I had one question for people familiar with this film... Is 16:9 the correct aspect ratio for this? I wondered because in the beginning of the film, there were a lot of heads being cut off at the forehead, and there seemed to be commercial breaks built in.

I'm eager to watch Hound of the Baskervilles now. I think Ian Richardson is an excellent Holmes, and the film felt very similar to the Jeremy Brett series in fact.

Last edited by BigNickUK; 05-22-2016 at 07:22 PM.
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Old 05-22-2016, 08:41 AM   #2
malcy30 malcy30 is offline
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Try and find the thread we are already discussing this including aspect ratio question.

I am on phone so can't search.
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Old 05-22-2016, 06:39 PM   #3
bigshot bigshot is offline
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I did search. There is no thread on these titles, just the Cushing and Basil Rathbone versions. It may be buried in some other thread. Care to give me a readers digest version of the answer to my question if you know?
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Old 05-22-2016, 06:49 PM   #4
Behemot Behemot is online now
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Quote:
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I did search. There is no thread on these titles, just the Cushing and Basil Rathbone versions. It may be buried in some other thread. Care to give me a readers digest version of the answer to my question if you know?
Here's the link to the post in the Second Sight thread:

http://forum.blu-ray.com/showpost.ph...&postcount=699
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Old 05-22-2016, 11:30 PM   #5
SilentNoise SilentNoise is offline
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I had one question for people familiar with this film... Is 16:9 the correct aspect ratio for this? I wondered because in the beginning of the film, there were a lot of heads being cut off at the forehead, and there seemed to be commercial breaks built in.
According to IMDB the aspect ratio is 4:3.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0086310/?ref_=fn_al_tt_4
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Old Yesterday, 07:27 AM   #6
bigshot bigshot is offline
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So if it was 4:3, it must have been produced for TV? That would explain some of the second unit shots that look particularly mushy. I wonder if the location stuff was shot on 16mm. The last half of the film definitely framed better at 16:9 than the first half. A little shot by shot framing would have helped the aspect a lot... and it probably would look even better 4:3.
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Old Yesterday, 08:48 PM   #7
malcy30 malcy30 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post
So if it was 4:3, it must have been produced for TV? That would explain some of the second unit shots that look particularly mushy. I wonder if the location stuff was shot on 16mm. The last half of the film definitely framed better at 16:9 than the first half. A little shot by shot framing would have helped the aspect a lot... and it probably would look even better 4:3.

If you read any of the Holmes on TV and film books, these were originally produced as independent TV productions which I believe included money from HBO.

They were planned as an ongoing serial but Granada's Brett Holmes series killed this as those became the definitive version.
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