(aka 'Ian Fleming's Thunderball' or 'James Bond, Secret Agent')

 

directed by Terence Young
UK 1965

The fourth Bond, marking the point at which spectacular hardware began to dominate the series. Sleek and quite fun all the same, with SPECTRE holding the world to ransom after stealing a couple of nuclear bombs, Bond almost getting his in the villain's shark-infested swimming pool, and a cleverly choreographed underwater battle to provide the icing on the mix.

Excerpt from TimeOut Film Guide located HERE

 

Posters

 

Theatrical Release: December 9th, 1965

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

DVD Comparison: 

MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL vs. MGM - (2-disc - part of Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC vs. MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray

 

1) MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL LEFT

2) MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC MIDDLE

3) MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray RIGHT

 

DVD Box Cover

Distribution MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC

MGM

Region 'A' - Blu-ray

James Bond Blu-ray Collection Three-Pack, Vol.2 [Blu-ray] (For Your Eyes Only / From Russia with Love / Thunderball) [Blu-ray] (2008) MGM

         

Runtime 2:04:56 (4% PAL speedup) 2:10:08 2:10:23

Video

2.35:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.81 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

2.35:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.91 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

2.35:1

Feature: 28.3 Gig

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate : MGM (PAL)

Bitrate: MGM (Ultimate)

Bitrate: MGM (Blu-ray)

NO BITRATE GRAPH FOR Blu-ray YET!

Audio English (Dolby Digital 5.1) English (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (DTS), DUB: French (Dolby Digital 1.0) English DTS HD Master 5.1, Original English Mono, Spanish Mono
Subtitles English, English (HOH), None English, French, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Thai, None English HOH, Spanish, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
MGM (Europe)

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.35:1

Edition Details:

• Commentary with director Terence Young (and others)

• Commentary with Peter Hunt, John Hopkins (and others)
• Inside Thunderball Featurette

• The Thunderball Phenomenon Featurette

• The Making of Thunderball Featurette

• 3 trailers

• 5 TV Spots

• 10 Radio Spots

DVD Release Date: November 3rd, 2003
Keep case

Chapters 32

Release Information:
Studio: MGM
 

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.35:1

Edition Details:

• Commentary with director Terence Young (and others)

• Commentary with Peter Hunt, John Hopkins (and others)

• Incredible World of James Bond
• A Child's Guide to Blowing Up a Motor Car
• On Location With Ken Adam
• Bill Suitor: The Rocket Man Movies
• Thunderball Boat Show Reel
• Selling Bonds
• Interactive Guide
• The Thunderball Phenomenon
• The Secret History of Thunderball
• The Making of Thunderball
• Original Trailers
• Photo Gallery
• Radio Communications
 

DVD Release Date: November 7th, 2006
Transparent Slim Keep Case inside cardboard box

Chapters 32

Release Information:
Studio: MGM
 

 

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1

Feature: 28.3 Gig

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

 

Edition Details:

• Commentary with director Terence Young (and others)

• Commentary with Peter Hunt, John Hopkins (and others)

• Incredible World of James Bond
• A Child's Guide to Blowing Up a Motor Car
• On Location With Ken Adam
• Bill Suitor: The Rocket Man Movies
• Thunderball Boat Show Reel
• Selling Bonds - original 1965 television commercials
• Interactive Guide
• The Thunderball Phenomenon
• The Secret History of Thunderball
• The Making of Thunderball
• Original Trailers
• Image database
• Radio Communications

 

Blu-ray Release Date: October 21st, 2008
Standard Blu-ray case

Chapters 32

 

 

Comments NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were ripped directly from the Blu-ray disc.

ADDITION: MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray - October 08': In my opinion Thunderball shows improvement when bumped to 1080P but it doesn't quite match the crispness and depth of From Russia With Love - in that same resolution. More good film grain is visible though. Black levels have more prominence and colors can occasionally show a radical shift from the 'Ultimate Edition' SD-DVD. I tested for edge-enhancement (as I suspected it) but in zooming-in to a few scenes couldn't find any definitive signs. I don't think there is any doubt as to the superiority of the Blu-ray but I'm not quite as high on this advancement even though I feel it most certainly portrays a far more accurate representation of the film than the older digital versions. I should note that I was able to play this quite easily on my standalone Sony S300 (where I had difficulty with From Russia With Love). Colors are never very brilliant but they are all tight and true. Hopefully the screen captures below will give you an idea of the appearance of the Blu-ray.

The DTS-HD track is superior and sounds quite alive. The new mix does exports a fairly strong aural presentation. Separation exists - although the centre channel dialogue can be a bit drowned out at times. John Barry's Bond score lives with healthy vigor. There are optional English or Spanish subtitles (no French) and these limitations leads us to conclude this is NOT a region free Blu-ray edition. Note: including the original track is an excellent idea.

Extras appear all the same as the SD incarnations with the two commentaries and plethora of external featurettes, interviews etc. - but nothing new that I could determine. Bond fans who indulge may appreciate it being housed on one disc.

So, it's James Bond in Thunderball - looking and sounding better than ever before for your home theater. The ultra-serious fans - may feel this is enough. This Blu-ray appears to have no major flaws and the audio presentation may have been what I noticed the most.

Dr. No should be up next...    

 - Gary Tooze

****

ON THE SD-DVDs: Quite a dramatic difference between the two releases - in all areas - including color and framing where the new Ultimate Edition vaults dramatically ahead. Boosting on the PAL edition appears quite prominent when the two releases are put side-by-side (note the consistent reddish skin tones on the UK release). It has strongly affected the colors in many scenes. Also the older DVD image shows extensive dirt and scratches in many sequences. The screen captures below indicate the extent of the cropping on  the image of the PAL release.

Subtitles - I will lean to the earlier release with a small, less intrusive, font and italicizing of some of the appropriate dialogue (see example below).

The DTS track on the Ultimate edition sounded very good although I am usually one for the pureness of original tracks - I have to admit I was quite impressed with the robust sound. I noticed no difference between the new 5.1 but I did not test it extensively.  

Extras: The commentaries are the same but the new Ultimate has added optional subtitles for them - a valuable step forward. A couple of the featurettes are duplicated (The Thunderball Phenomenon , The Making of Thunderball) but there is much more - actually they pretty much the same as on the UK Ultimate edition (see HERE). I am presently wading through them. One might use the word 'excessive'.

My biggest gripes with the new Ultimate editions in region 1 - Why aren't these films in chronological production order? and why aren't they being sold separately? I'm certain the latter point is simply to gouge us for more money and the former probably has something to do with that as well. Bad move MGM.    

 - Gary Tooze

 

 



DVD Menus

(MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL LEFT vs. MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC RIGHT)

 

 
 
 

 

 

Disc 2 - Ultimate Collection Vol. 2 - Region 1,3 - NTSC

 


Screen Captures

 

CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

 

1) MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL TOP

2) MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC MIDDLE

3) MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


Subtitle Sample: Not exact frame

 

 

 


 

 

1) MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL TOP

2) MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC MIDDLE

3) MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


 

 

1) MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL TOP

2) MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC MIDDLE

3) MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


 

1) MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL TOP

2) MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC MIDDLE

3) MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


 

1) MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL TOP

2) MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC MIDDLE

3) MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


 

1) MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL TOP

2) MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC MIDDLE

3) MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


 

1) MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL TOP

2) MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC MIDDLE

3) MGM / Fox - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


More Blu-ray

 

 

Report Card:

 

Image:

Blu-ray

Sound:

Blu-ray

Extras: MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) / Blu-ray
Menu: -

 
DVD Box Cover

Distribution MGM - (Special Edition) - Region 2,4 - PAL MGM - (Ultimate Collection Vol. 2) - Region 1,3 - NTSC

MGM

Region 'A' - Blu-ray

James Bond Blu-ray Collection Three-Pack, Vol.2 [Blu-ray] (For Your Eyes Only / From Russia with Love / Thunderball) [Blu-ray] (2008) MGM

         




 

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