HTS Moderator , Reviewer
Title: Clint Eastwood 20 Film Collection
HTS Overall Score:79
Clint Eastwood, the name of legends in the film industry. Whether you love him or hate him, you have to admit that the man has impacted the film industry with a wildly successful career for over 50 years. Starting out in simple roles he’s able to switch from genre to genre and make each role his own, no matter the film he’s in. Rough, rugged, craggy good looks and a boyish charm (although one might now say he’s a bit more grumpy old man ), he’s stolen audiences hearts as a gun slinging cowboy, a cheeky lawman with a heart of gold, a bitter old war veteran and just about everything in between. Not just content with acting in films, he’s moved on to producing and directing quite a few award winning films by his lonesome. So eager to make the leap from actor to director, Eastwood waived compensation for his directorial debut “Play Misty for Me” just so that he could have the opportunity. Moving on from there he’s directed such films as “J. Edgar”, “Mystic River”, “Letters of Iwo Jima” and many more.
I grew up watching Clint Eastwood play on “Rawhide” from the time I was six years old. I would sneak down on Saturday’s and watch re-runs with my older brothers even though I was supposed to be upstairs away from such “rough stuff” as my mother would say. I fell in love with his portrayal of the man with no name and ever since I was on my own I have been collecting every single film I can get my hand on that bears his name. When given the opportunity to review this set I jumped on without hesitation. What better way to spend a week then chewing through a giant boxset of 20 great film and a myriad of special features. Coming in a giant digibook case, this set contains 22 discs. 20 Blu-ray film discs and 2 DVD’s containing 3 hours of documentary supplemental material not available before this set in the individual releases. The digibook carries the films in cardboard sleeves with pictures of each film adorning the pages. There is also a picture book with full color photos from on set scenes and captions for each picture with an anecdote about what happened in that particular instance. All of this covered with a clear plastic slipcase that lists the films on the front as well as a signature from Clint himself.
With 20 films in one giant boxset it’s impossible to list them all out and give a description for each one. 19 of those films have all been released before in individual releases over the last seven years of Blu-ray’s existence so they are available for all to see. The ONLY film in the set that has never been released before is “A Perfect World”. So I’ll pay a little bit more attention to that film. Here we have an escaped convict, Robert Haynes (Kevin Costner) who kidnaps a young child and runs from his captors. Clint Eastwood plays a U.S. Marshall named Red Garnett, intent on recapturing the escaped criminal. As Robert and the young boy travel together they start to realize that they aren’t so different after all. As they travel down through Texas towards the border they see just how “imperfect” their so called “perfect world” really is.
Of these 20 films most are pure gold. Some are a bit weaker than others, but it’s obvious that they tried to cherry pick the greatest of his films here. Unfortunately it looks like several of the newer ones were added in just because they were new and readily available. Fare like “Hereafter” and “J. Edgar” and “Trouble with the curve” are definitely NOT his greatest works, but they do provide a slice in the modern Eastwood world. Some of the others are strange, look at the fact that Dirty Harry 1, 2 and 4 are chosen, but not 3 and 5 are left out. As a result there is some small issues with “completeness” in the sets. However, some of his greatest films are in the mix and these are a delight to view. “Unforgiven” , “Pale Rider”, and “The outlaw Josey Wales” are some of his finest westerns to date and “Firefox” and “every which way but loose” are some of the greatest 80’s cheese films he’s done. Ranging from the benign PG rating to some of his harder hitting films, the “Clint Eastwood 20 Film Collection” spans a wide variety of films and ratings to give us a beautiful cross section of his career.
Rated PG to R depending on the film
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=117806[/img]Video wise the films range from mediocre to phenomenal. Some such as “Pale Rider” and “Dirty Harry” look a bit rougher than I’d like, but there is the unfortunate issue that these are old films and not given perfect re masters. Others like “Trouble with the curve” and “J. Edgar” look pristine as modern movies so often do. Averaging the scores of all the films together I’d have to say that this whole set is around a 4 out of 5. Some films are weaker as mentioned, but others look fantastic and very film like. The only thing I really wish Warner had done was clean up a few of the obvious issues that some of the films had in the past with a brand new encode instead of recycling the same discs into a boxset.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=11807[/img]Audio wise it’s much the same way. Since these are the same encodes as the previous editions the audio ranges from mediocre to fantastic. Some of the original Warner discs contain lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 audio at 640 kbps bitrate, while the rest contain standard lossless Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MA tracks. Even though the lossy encoding is a slight technical issue the mixes (which are the most important part), are for the most part superb. Crisp vocals with only a couple discs suffering from slightly off balance dialogue (mostly from the original film elements) and beautiful use of the soundstage I would have to say that Warner has always had a penchant for giving us unaltered mixes instead of amped up tracks with new mixes and sound effect. Very smooth and natural they give us a wide range of styles, from front loaded, dialogue heavy movies, to the thundering and crashing of bullets in an action fiesta.
• Various depending on title
• The Eastwood Factor (Extended Edition)
• Easwood Directs: The Untold Story
The extras here are vast and varying depending on the title. Since these are all the 20 individual titles packaged together in one boxset it includes ALL the previous extras that come on each independent disc. The two main additions come on discs 21 and 22. Here we have "The Eastwood Factor" an extended edition documentary detailing Clint's career in film, both directorial and acting wise. A full hour and a half this documentary is a pure gem. I've seen the original version before and is a fantastic myopic story into the life of an actor that has graced us with over 50 years of film. Narrated by Morgan Freeman it is insightful and entertaining it is one of my favorite documentaries out there. the 22nd disc contains "Eastwood Directs: The Untold Story", another documentary this one detailing the life and times of over 40 Eastwood films that he's starred and directed in. With commentary by Kevin Bacon, Kevin Costner, John Calley, Clint Eastwood himself, it is a solid documentary, only trumped by the truly fantastic "Eastwood Directs: The Untold Story". Combining these 3 hours with the dozens of hours of special features on the film discs themselves this is one hefty piece of work to chew through.
1. Dirty Harry
2. Magnum Force
3. The Outlaw Josey Wales
4. The Gauntlet
5. Every Which Way But Loose
7. Sudden Impact
8. Pale Rider
9. Heartbreak Ridge
11. A Perfect World
12. Space Cowboys[/column]
13. Mystic River
14. Million Dollar Baby
15. Letters from Iowa Jima
16. Gran Torino
19. J. Edgar
20. Trouble With The Curve
21. The Eastwood Factor (Extended Cut)
22. Eastwood Directs : The Untold Story
A conglomerate collection of 20 films spanning almost 40 years, this collection is a jewel in anyone’s collection. For those of you who already have a majority of the films it may be a bit of a hard sell, but due to the fact that the set is selling at a street value of $4.50 a film it’s make it very easy to recoup the costs by selling off any individual discs if needed. The only issue that I would have with this is the “completeness” of certain series films like “Dirty Harry” or “Any which way but loose/Every Which Way you can”. For those of you who haven’t yet jumped into as many films, this set is a no brainer and looks stunning as well. With the addition of “A Perfect World” we have a very complete and unique set of films that will certain to be at home in any film collectors shelf.
Starring: Clint Eastwood, Hillary Swank, Kevin Costner, Sean Penn, Kevin Bacon
Directed by: See Individual titles
Written by: See Individual titles
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1, 2.39:1, 1.85:1, AVC, VC-1
Audio: English: Dolby True-HD 5.1, English DTS-HD MA, English DD 5.1
Studio: Warner Brothers
Rated: PG, PG-13, R
Runtime: See Individual titles
Blu-Ray Release Date: June 4th, 2013
Buy Clint Eastwood 20 Film Collection Blu-ray on Amazon
Recommendation: Watch It
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