In 1964, the Beatles had just recently exploded onto the American scene with their debut on "The Ed Sullivan Show." The group's first feature, the Academy Award-nominated "A Hard Day's Night," offered fans their first peek... more » into a day in the life of the Beatles and served to establish the Fab Four on the silver screen, as well as to inspire the music video format. Songs: I'll Cry Instead, A Hard Day's Night, I Should've Known Better, Can't Buy Me Love, If I Fell, And I Love Her, I'm Happy Just to Dance with You, Ringo's Theme (This Boy), Tell Me Why, Don't Bother Me, I Wanna Be Your Man, All My Lovin', She Loves You.« less
The documentary part was pretty dull and boring but the song part was pretty awesome. Disk 2 is pretty worthless so stick to the one disk set instead.
1 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Charlene C. (mccoffield) from SOUTHLAKE, TX Reviewed on 2/26/2013...
Nothing wrong with the sound on this DVD set. Perhaps the reviewers that had a sound quality problem had some other version.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Appoach this DVD with EXTREME CAUTION!
Pete Sayek | Clinton, New Jersey United States | 10/01/2002
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Hard to believe that Miramax Entertainment could mess up this DVD so horribly. An anniversary release of one of the most important films of the 20th century no less. Shame on them.There are a lot of raves here about the fact that the film is being presented "letterboxed" for the first time. Actually, it's just the first time the top and bottom of the picture have been chopped off for no reason! "A Hard Day's Night" was filmed in Academy standard 1.37:1. Slightly wider than your average TV tube, but not anything close to the 1.66:1 chop job on the new DVD. Full-frame would have been the proper presentation.As for the audio...they DID clean up the dialog portions of the movie, so for perhaps the first time EVER, you can actually HEAR what everyone is saying - and it no longer sounds like they are speaking into an Edison cylinder recorder.But oh, the music. They replaced the original mono soundtrack with the standard mono AHDN CD to replace the overmodulated music on the original film. Never mind that there were a couple of different mixes in there that they should have left alone ("Tell Me Why", "And I Love Her", "If I Fell") - BUT...they went and added microdelay and phasing to create some kind of a half-assed 5.1 mix that through a standard stereo or mono downmixed output makes the audio sound phase-y and hollow. This is worse than the original mono mix (available on the original Beta & VHS release from 1982 or the print aired on AMC several years ago) and the fact that the standard mono mix was NOT made available as alternate audio on the disc (as it was on the "Yellow Submarine" DVD) is an oversight punishable by public stoning.As for all the bonus material...not ONE interview with an actual Beatle? Not even McCartney? The closest we get is George Martin?The person behind this mess is none other than Martin Lewis, self-proclaimed Beatle "expert" and all around media whore. Lewis' involvement explains why no-one at Apple would have anything to do with the project. With some two-hours of useless interviews as "bonus" material, here's what you DON'T get:The original theatrical trailersThe reissue theatrical trailersThe original theatrical "making-of" featuretteThe surviving outtake footage ("You Can't Do That") [which, as a sidenote was left off the MPI DVD, making having the VHS & Laserdisc necessary]The aforementioned MPI documentary DVDAny surviving still photos of the other missing sequencesRunning commentary on an alternate audio trackThe promised (but not included) Richard Lester's "Running Jumping Standing Still Movie"Anything of any relevance.What makes this all the worse is that the image looks terrific. However, it's been so horribly trashed that the only proper place for this DVD is the trash can or as a trade in at the used DVD store.Anyone who owns the original MPI DVD should hold on to it and save thier tewnty bucks.Thanks to my friend Steve for enlightening me on this..."
THIS DVD WAS A BIG DISAPPOINTMENT
David B. Bennett | The Land of Enchantment, New Mexico, USA | 10/04/2002
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Being a big Beatle fan, and a big fan of this movie, I highly anticipated the arrival of this title on DVD. The sound on this DVD is bad, there is absolutely no dynamic range. The volume level seems to hover at the same level through out the film, there is no difference in volume between the scenes when there is a quiet conversation and the scenes where the band is playing. I also own the title on laserdisc and let me tell you, the laserdisc has at least 30 db of dynamic range. While watching this film on laserdisc, you can adjust the level of playback so that the scenes where there is conversation is a comfortable 75 db, and when the band plays it jumps up to an ear thumping 105 db or more. This DVD lacks ooph, the band sounds like their playing in a box. This film deserves a better sound treatment, I highly recommend boycotting the DVD and lets wait till they release it in it's proper state."
Far better than I hoped, from the reviews
Ralph Ferdingstadt | Ashland, OR | 04/13/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When I finally decided to consider replacing my old MPI VHS tape copy of A Hard Day's Night (MP 1064) with the currently available 2 DVD set, I read the reviews on this listing to see if it was really worth re-buying something I've only occasionally watched over the last twenty or so years. It's not that I dislike the movie - far from it - It's just that this is one of those movies I can only watch once in a while with interest. Which only means; it's dated, although in the best possible way. But I love it, and having it as a VHS cassette rotting on my shelf made no sense, so I looked into the DVD.
I knew this was one of the first DVDs released and I've heard some which sound pretty bad, generally due to excessive echo from a careless transfer. And after reading the reviews here, I was expecting the music to be trash. (I took the precaution of making a digital recording of the soundtrack of the tape.) Also screen-cropping was an issue. I prefer widescreen when I can get it, but if someone actually cut part of the image off, which is what at least one reviewer seemed to be saying, that's catastrophic. Needless to say, I did approach this DVD with extreme caution.
But I was pleasantly surprised at what I found. As for the sound, my dread turned to relief when I heard that the Beatles' music on this DVD sounds as clean and pure as I could hope, with my only beef being that it is rendered in mono, rather than the "hi-fi" stereo of the VHS. But strangely, I found that in this case, mono works better. Instead of shifting from mono dialogue to stereo music, the DVD is completely mono, which makes for a more consistent viewing experience. For the performance section at the end, I believe a bit more echo was added to make it sound more "live." But as it's all studio tracks anyway, the alteration is somewhat justified and actually does add to the illusion you're listening to the Beatles perform, rather than lip-sync.
On the cropping; This DVD is in widescreen, which admittedly does make the image smaller and harder to see on the small screen. So why would anyone crop a movie to make it appear widescreen when it'd be better full? Profit? (So they could sell us another copy later on.) Possibly, but for some reason in this instance, I doubted it. What I did to check was pick an object in the movie close enough to the top of the full screen video that if it were cropped, would certainly not show up on the wide. I picked the helicopter propeller blades near the end of the movie, when you can see their top, before it takes off. I found that they were not cropped off on the DVD, although I'll grant it may be that they were closer to the top of the screen. But this may appear so due to the reduced size of the picture. In any case, if there is any cropping, it's not obtrusive.
So why all the carping? I'm going to guess because it's not the way you remember it. Take the fans' word for it, but for my money, the fact that I can actually hear what everyone's saying, plus the interviews, makes the DVD preferable."
Worst Sound Mix EVER!
Daniel Matz | Reading, PA | 11/27/2002
(2 out of 5 stars)
"If I was reviewing only the picture of this dvd, I would rate it 4 or 5 stars. However, since the sound is simply awful, I can't. The old MPI video took the orignal recordings of the songs and mixed them back into the movie. This approach sounded crisp and clear, and more importantly in true stereo (since The Beatles at the time were using 4-track tape). I'm guessing that Miramax was not allowed access to the masters. Consequently, their new so-called 5.1 "remix", had to be built around the original mono track of the film itself. In other words, any kind of stereoization had to be electronically faked. My initial reaction, when hearing this dvd for the first time, was that all the songs were rerecorded by other musicians. This is obviously not the case. But the recordings sound so differently from what is expected, I wasn't sure!
The picture is decent. But what about that reissue prologue and the deleted "You Can't Do That" performance? The dvd producers must have known how long fans have been waiting for this film to be released. They could have put more time and care into it. Oh well. Let's hope Miramax doesn't aquire the rights to HELP!"
Love the film but not the DVD
Bill T | CT USA | 12/16/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I've tried to watch this DVD a number of times but the songs don't sound the way they should, the way they were meant to sound, and this ruins the entire movie for me. It's a shame because this movie is the greatest.
Why can't they just release the movie in its original form so that viewing it would be like seeing it new in 1964? In the early nineties AMC played a lovely restored & cleaned up version. Why not release that version? Then, as a bonus, throw in some original trailers and the "You Can't Do That" footage.
When you have a perfect film to begin with....don't mess with it!"