42nd Street (1933) (NTSC)
Main Menu Audio
Listing-Cast & Crew
Featurette-Harry Warren: America's Foremost Composer
Featurette-Trip Through A Hollywood Studio
|Year Of Production||1933|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||1,4||Directed By||Lloyd Bacon|
Warner Home Video
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||English Dolby Digital 1.0 (192Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||480i (NTSC)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.37:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Things go wrong when Dorothy breaks her ankle the evening before the premiere, and a new star needs to be found. Of course, the inexperienced Peggy Sawyer is thrust into the limelight to become the new star.
I did not find this movie boring, but did not find it particularly compelling either. The most interesting parts were just getting an idea of how musical productions were made back then (apparently the movie is a very authentic take on the process), and how differently people of the early 1900's spoke and carried themselves. Almost every male spoke in a strange, high strained voice, and the women all seemed so innocent. In fact, the whole cast projects a sort of innocence that is certainly not present in modern movies.
The music and songs are not too bad, but certainly are no match for those produced by Rogers and Hammerstein.
The movie is presented at an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 (full-frame), which differs slightly from the original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.37:1, and is a black and white feature. Note that this is an NTSC transfer, and so your equipment will need to be NTSC compatible to view it.
Sharpness varies throughout the movie, ranging from very sharp in some scenes to extremely fuzzy in others. Some short scenes at the start of the movie (eg. 1:30) appear very sharp and clear, but are ruined by following scenes that are distinctly soft and grainy. There are not many dark scenes in the movie, but in those scenes that are lowly lit, the shadow detail is lacking and definitely not up to the standards of today. Black levels aren't too bad, but this is quite hard to judge with a black and white movie. The blacks certainly did not appear dull, greyish, or brownish so this is a good thing. Grain is visible throughout the majority of the movie, with some scenes particularly affected.
Being a black and white movie, colour assessment does not apply. The blacks and whites in the movie are satisfactory. Some brightness flickering in the opening scenes and some cases during the movie are distracting.
Film artefacts are a given when describing a movie of this age. Black and white flecks, lines, and scratches appear frequently, and are mildly distracting. I found that I was more forgiving knowing the age of the movie. I could not detect any instances of edge enhancement, but aliasing occurred once or twice.
English and French subtitles are provided. The English subtitles are fairly accurate.
This is a single sided, single layered disc.
Dialogue is usually clear with no audio synchronisation issues, but at times exhibits some crackling sounds and hiss. The crackling sound and hiss also extend to the music, and both also sound muffled on occasion.
Being a mono track, there is no stereo separation, no surround speaker usage, and no subwoofer involvement. The lack of subwoofer activity isn't that big an issue due to the movie type, but some stereo or surround separation would have been nice.
|Surround Channel Use|
Cast & Crew
Simply some notes on the cast and crew.
Some information regarding the opening of the Broadway musical in 1980.
Featurette - Harry Warren: America's Foremost Composer - 9:09
Harry Warren and the cast provide a musical number.
Featurette - Trip Through A Hollywood Studio - 10:06
A fairly interesting short documentary describing the various studios in existence at that time (eg. Universal, Warner Bros, Fox).
Featurette - Hollywood Newsreel - 8:57
Describes a football team's trip to a Hollywood studio and their activities.
A voiceover describes small aspects of the making of the movie, and introduces the main stars.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
42nd Street is an interesting look at how stage musicals and movies themselves were made back in the early 1900's. It was interesting from my point of view in just seeing how different the culture was compared to modern times. People certainly acted and spoke differently. The movie itself is simple, but may bore most modern audiences today.
The video quality is satisfactory for its age.
The audio quality is satisfactory, but some stereo separation would have been nice.
The extras are nothing particularly memorable.
|DVD||Onkyo DV-SP500, using Component output|
|Display||RK-32HDP81 HDTV. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Onkyo TX-SR600 with DD/DD-EX/DTS/DTS-ES matrix and discrete. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Kef KHT 2005 5.1 Home Theatre System|