Salem's Lot on blu ray. How come......

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fljoe0

Cantre Member
Apr 5, 2008
14,045
57,910
57
120 miles S of the Pancake/Waffle line
#9
It ran for 2 nights, so the proper length should be close to 3 hours (4 hours minus commercials). Here is something from wikipedia about the different versions

Salem's Lot originally aired on CBS on November 17 and 24 of 1979 in two 2-hour segments. The following year, CBS aired an edited version of the miniseries in one 3-hour segment. NAL/Signet Books also published a paperback tie-in of the novel which included "8 pages of blood-chilling photos".

Theatrical cut
A 112-minute edit of the miniseries was subsequently given a theatrical release in Europe. The theatrical cut of Salem's Lot features different musical cues, alternative scenes, and deletes many scenes, including the prologue and epilogue with Ben Mears and Mark Petrie in Guatemala as well as Susan's fate.
 

kingricefan

All-being, keeper of Space, Time & Dimension.
Jul 11, 2006
28,663
117,772
Spokane, WA
#10
It ran for 2 nights, so the proper length should be close to 3 hours (4 hours minus commercials). Here is something from wikipedia about the different versions

Salem's Lot originally aired on CBS on November 17 and 24 of 1979 in two 2-hour segments. The following year, CBS aired an edited version of the miniseries in one 3-hour segment. NAL/Signet Books also published a paperback tie-in of the novel which included "8 pages of blood-chilling photos".

Theatrical cut
A 112-minute edit of the miniseries was subsequently given a theatrical release in Europe. The theatrical cut of Salem's Lot features different musical cues, alternative scenes, and deletes many scenes, including the prologue and epilogue with Ben Mears and Mark Petrie in Guatemala as well as Susan's fate.
In other words, the theatrical version is (using Fat B*stard's voice from the Austin Powers movies) CRAP! =D
 

Sundrop

Sunny the Great & Wonderful
Jun 12, 2008
26,282
138,019
#13
I have a vhs (I recorded it off of TV - not in 1979 but in the late 80s) and I think that it's probably 3 hours.
Mine is a 1999 dvd Warner Bros. release of the 1979 mini series. I divided 183 by 60 and get 3.05 hours. We probably have the same version, mine is just on dvd.
I'm wondering if the second airing of the mini series on CBS was actually edited for content, or maybe just had fewer commercial breaks?.....the copy I have seems pretty complete as far as I can remember watching it the first time around.
 

fljoe0

Cantre Member
Apr 5, 2008
14,045
57,910
57
120 miles S of the Pancake/Waffle line
#16
Clicked on that link and looks like the BluRay is out now at the 183 minute length. Released Sept., 2016.
I bought it a few days ago from Amazon. I haven't had a chance to watch it yet but I put it in the blu-ray player to take a quick look and it looks pretty good. It's not a spectacular looking blu-ray but since it was a TV mini series, I wasn't expecting it to be spectacular. It is a definite improvement in video quality over the previous version. Also, this blu-ray is the 3 hour version. Here is the review from HiDef Digest (this is a great review site to look at if you are thinking about buying a blu-ray. They do a nice job on this site of separating the spectacular from the ordinary)

Salem's Lot Blu-ray Review | High Def Digest
 

Gerald

Well-Known Member
Sep 8, 2011
1,481
4,413
The Netherlands
#17
Spent Halloween with the 'ghost' of Tobe Hooper talking me through the film on blu-ray. His commentary doesn't provide a whole lot of new insights, but it's still nice to hear him talk about it and he clearly was very fond of it. The commentary is a bit spread-out, with a lot of dialogue still audible, but it is a long film and might be hard to talk all the way through. He speaks mainly about the actors, the locations and practical side of making the film.
It would have been nice if there had also been a commentary by a film historian/journalist to provide more facts. Also it would have been great if they had been able to find more people that were involved for some feature or featurette, but it is quite an old film of course and it might probably have been hard to get people that were involved together.

It looks excellent on blu-ray, very sharp and clear. No damage or dirt, or anything distracting really.
It's too bad Hooper doesn't fully reveal how he achieved the flying through the window scenes. He didn't have the kids on wires and to prove that to the audience he had them 'flying' through the window - they're on a 'rig', but I don't fully get what a rig is in this case.
And it's too bad, that although the first two of those scenes are so good, the third clearly shows that the kid is sitting on something.

The filmic language of the film is purely Hitchcock - that was Hooper's intention and main approach to it. I think it mostly reaches that level toward the end, because the scenes involving Susan (Bonnie Bedelia) going up to the Marsten house feel so close to the finale of Psycho. And inside the Marsten house it feels most like Hooper's best known film, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

Hooper prefers the longer cut (it is exactly 3 hours, 3 minutes and 3 seconds on the blu-ray funnily!) over the shorter one which features some slightly stronger scenes that were specially filmed for that version. I hope to see the shorter version some time. Actually it's on tv here this weekend, so I'll check it out and see if there are differences - the longer version doesn't seem to fit in the time that is planned for it, so I hope it's a different cut.
 

kingricefan

All-being, keeper of Space, Time & Dimension.
Jul 11, 2006
28,663
117,772
Spokane, WA
#18
Spent Halloween with the 'ghost' of Tobe Hooper talking me through the film on blu-ray. His commentary doesn't provide a whole lot of new insights, but it's still nice to hear him talk about it and he clearly was very fond of it. The commentary is a bit spread-out, with a lot of dialogue still audible, but it is a long film and might be hard to talk all the way through. He speaks mainly about the actors, the locations and practical side of making the film.
It would have been nice if there had also been a commentary by a film historian/journalist to provide more facts. Also it would have been great if they had been able to find more people that were involved for some feature or featurette, but it is quite an old film of course and it might probably have been hard to get people that were involved together.

It looks excellent on blu-ray, very sharp and clear. No damage or dirt, or anything distracting really.
It's too bad Hooper doesn't fully reveal how he achieved the flying through the window scenes. He didn't have the kids on wires and to prove that to the audience he had them 'flying' through the window - they're on a 'rig', but I don't fully get what a rig is in this case.
And it's too bad, that although the first two of those scenes are so good, the third clearly shows that the kid is sitting on something.

The filmic language of the film is purely Hitchcock - that was Hooper's intention and main approach to it. I think it mostly reaches that level toward the end, because the scenes involving Susan (Bonnie Bedelia) going up to the Marsten house feel so close to the finale of Psycho. And inside the Marsten house it feels most like Hooper's best known film, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

Hooper prefers the longer cut (it is exactly 3 hours, 3 minutes and 3 seconds on the blu-ray funnily!) over the shorter one which features some slightly stronger scenes that were specially filmed for that version. I hope to see the shorter version some time. Actually it's on tv here this weekend, so I'll check it out and see if there are differences - the longer version doesn't seem to fit in the time that is planned for it, so I hope it's a different cut.
The 'rig' Hooper refers to is actually a telescoping crane. You can't see the 'arm' part that the kid is attached to but it let them move the boy in and out of the window to very dramatic effect.
 

Gerald

Well-Known Member
Sep 8, 2011
1,481
4,413
The Netherlands
#19
The 'rig' Hooper refers to is actually a telescoping crane. You can't see the 'arm' part that the kid is attached to but it let them move the boy in and out of the window to very dramatic effect.
So they're still hanging on some wire at the end of this crane, I assume, it's almost as if they're swimming in the air. The camera is probably put at a (low) angle where the crane isn't visible behind the kid's back? And there's the smoke to obscure it, of course.
It would be nice if there was an on-set production still that showed it completely and clearly.

It's very well done, hence I wonder what the decision was to the third one differently - the third one doesn't even have to fly through the window, but it's the worst looking.
 

Gerald

Well-Known Member
Sep 8, 2011
1,481
4,413
The Netherlands
#20
Looks to me like they're preparing for the shot here:

https://mattmulcahey.files.wordpress.com/2014/10/salems-lot-aic.jpg

It's kind of hard to see, but to the left I think is the crane, covered with black cloth, and it seems attached around the boy's chest - that way they could make him move from a more horizontal to a vertical position most likely (or the other way around really, as with the last scene in Carrie it was played in reverse, to give it an added weirdness).
What's amazing is you don't see the crane at all, as the boy goes quite a long way inside the room and there really isn't THAT much smoke. And I don't think it's a blue screen situation.

The theatrical cut is 112 minutes. What's strange is that the version shown this weekend on tv here is still two parts, but each 15 minutes shorter, so that's 150 minutes (may be somewhat less because of commercials), which is too long to be the theatrical cut.
 
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