Frank Sinatra-Ol' Blue Eyes Is Back (1973)

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Released 21-Jan-2002

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Music Notes-Catalogue
Theatrical Trailer
Rating Rated G
Year Of Production 1973
Running Time 51:12 (Case: 50)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Programme
Region Coding 2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Marty Pasetta
Studio
Distributor

Warner Vision
Starring Frank Sinatra
Case Soft Brackley-Transp
RPI $34.95 Music Various


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Linear PCM 48/16 2.0 (1536Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
French
German
Spanish
Italian
Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes, credits roll over the last song

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Sinatra: Ol' Blue Eyes is Back is a nostalgic made-for-television special, celebrating Sinatra's return from retirement in 1973.

    Sinatra once remarked that while he had danced with many partners, the best partner he ever had was a man. He was referring to his good friend Gene Kelly, who joins him on stage in this special. The two first united on the set of Anchors Aweigh (1945), where Kelly taught Sinatra how to dance in six weeks before shooting began. The two worked together again in the classic movies Take Me Out To The Ball Game (1949) and On The Town (1949). During this special the two sing together, and perform some of their old dance routines again, and considering that both of them are aged about sixty at the time, they do a d*** fine job.

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Track Listing

1. You Will Be My Music
2. I Get A Kick Out Of You
3. Street Of Dreams
4. I've Got You Under My Skin
5. I've Got The World On A String
6. Last Night When We Were Young
7. Violets For Your Fur
8. Here's That Rainy Night
9. We Can't Do That Anymore
10. Take Me Out To The Ball Game
11. For Me And My Gal
12. Private Skinny
13. Nice 'N' Easy
14. Let Me Try Again
15. Send In The Clowns
16. You Will Be My Music

Transfer Quality

Video

    The quality of the transfer is reasonable considering the age of the source material, but keep in mind that the source material is thirty-year-old video tape from US television.    

    The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1, full frame.    

    The image is soft throughout and there is not much shadow detail. There is some low level noise on occasion, for example at 6:20.   

    The colour has aged, and is quite dark throughout.

    There are a few MPEG artefacts present. Despite the softness, the transfer displays slight pixelization, for example at 6:05. Close-ups of Sinatra's face can display posterization, such as at 39:36. There is also some macro-blocking, for example the stage at 44:56.

    There was some aliasing on occasion, for example the set at 14:57. Related to the aliasing, there is also a very distracting problem that I have never seen before - short black horizontal lines that seem to attach to the aliasing occasionally. Examples can be seen at 16:13 and on Sinatra and Kelly's shirts at 28:23. (Ed. This is probably video overmodulation, and inherent in the source videotape.) There are also small white flecks appearing randomly throughout, seemingly caused by tape drop-out. An example can be seen at 4:13. There are a number of analogue tape tracking errors, which cause grey horizontal lines to appear on screen, such as at 11:11. The picture also smears and ghosts on occasion, for example at 41:01.

    All the subtitles promised on the packaging were present. While the non-English subtitles would only appear during the spoken passages, the English subtitles would also display the song lyrics during Frank's performance. The English subtitles were accurate.

    This is a single-layered disc which is acceptable considering the length of the material.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    The quality of the audio is good considering the age of the source material. There are a few drop-outs and other glitches, but I imagine that these are all in the source material.

    There is only one audio track on this DVD, an English PCM track adapted from the original mono source. Fortunately, there is none of the heavy background hiss often apparent in mono tracks of this vintage.

    The dialogue quality and audio sync are very good. Sinatra's lyrics, as always, are clear, and his unique phrasing sits well in the audio mix. Apart from singing, there is also quite a bit of Sinatra's banter in between tracks. At one point he makes a quick remark to a member of the audience sitting a few rows back. If you look closely, you will see that it is Sammy Davis Jr.

    All the music is arranged and conducted by Don Costa and the great Gordon Jenkins. A rich and lush sound is provided by the full orchestra that backs Sinatra. I was a little concerned when the concert began, but Sinatra's voice warms up, and by the second number he is at full strength. Overall, Sinatra provides a pretty gutsy performance, and in particular, brings a great emotional depth to Stephen Sondheim's Send In The Clowns.

    As a PCM track, the surround speakers and subwoofer are not called upon during this DVD.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

    This DVD contains few extras.

Menu

    The DVD auto-plays on loading, but there is a menu if you select it. It is static and without audio.

Trailer

    This four minute and nineteen second trailer is presented in as aspect ratio of 1.33:1, full frame, non-16x9 enhanced with an English PCM track. It advertises the series of ten Sinatra DVDs that Warner Vision is releasing, as opposed to this DVD in particular. I assume that this trailer appears on all ten DVDs.

Catalogue

    Purely text-based, this extra lists the tracks on Warner Vision's ten Sinatra DVDs. Again I assume that this extra appears on all ten DVDs.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    The Region 1 version of this DVD was released in June, 1999. It only differs from the Region 4 version in the design of the slick. Therefore I easily favour our version based on its availability, and most importantly, its superior PAL image.

Summary

    Warner Vision are releasing a series of ten Sinatra DVDs. Each captures a different Sinatra performance over the many years. If you are a fan of the great MGM musicals of the 1940s, then experiencing the songs on this DVD will be like meeting old friends.

    The video quality is reasonable considering the age of the source material.

    The audio quality is good considering the age of the source material.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Brandon Robert Vogt (warning: bio hazard)
Thursday, February 14, 2002
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-535, using S-Video output
DisplayGrundig Elegance 82-2101 (82cm, 16x9). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationSony STR DE-545
SpeakersSony SS-V315 x5; Sony SA-WMS315 subwoofer

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