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From Hollywood to Heaven: The Lost and Saved Films of the Ormond Family 1951-1997 [4 X Blu-ray]
 

Untamed Mistress (1956)     Please Don't Touch Me (1963)    Forty Acre Feud (1965)

The Girl from Tobacco Row (1966)    White Lightnin' Road (1967)    The Exotic Ones (1968)

If Footmen Tire You What Will Horses Do? (1971)    The Burning Hell (1974)    The Grim Reaper (1976)

The Believer's Heaven (1977)   39 Stripes (1979)    The Second Coming (1980)    The Sacred Symbol (1984)

 

 

"Presented by Nicolas Winding Refn, From Hollywood to Heaven tells the extraordinary story of a truly unique American filmmaking family.

For almost half a century, June, Ron and Tim Ormond, a Nashville mother-father-son trio, cranked out a wild bunch of movies, from Lash LaRue westerns to the stripper-gore-musical outrage The Exotic Ones, and plunged into every area of showbiz. What's more, they did it all on a shoestring, totally independently, with no studio to back them.

At the height of their frenzied career, Ron and June experienced a spiritual awakening when their private plane crashed on the way to a premiere. From then on, they turned their back on secular show business to produce a series of shocking, surreal religious pictures, including an unbelievable trio of films for Mississippi Baptist preacher Estus Pirkle - films such as The Burning Hell, which made millions, despite never being shown in an actual movie theatre.

Produced by Powerhouse Films in association with NWR, and released to coincide with FAB Press' publication of forensic biographer Jimmy McDonough's awe-inspiring tome on the extraordinary life and work of the Ormond Family, this strictly limited, individually numbered Blu-ray box set contains thirteen feature films, a host of new and archival extra features - including five new audio commentaries and a collection of rarely seen short films - as well as a set of art cards and a fully illustrated 100-page book, newly written by McDonough."

Posters

 

Theatrical Release: March 1955 - April 15th, 1997

Reviews                                                                        More Reviews                                                  DVD Reviews

 

Review: Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray

Box Cover

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Bonus Captures:

Distribution Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray
Video

4 X 1080P Dual-layered Blu-rays

Average Video Bitrate: 24.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Sample Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

LPCM Audio English 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit

or

LPCM Audio English 768 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit
Commentaries:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles English (SDH), None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Indicator

 

Edition Details:

Disc One
Audio commentary with author and Ormond biographer Jimmy McDonough on Please Don't Touch Me (2023)
Edge of Tomorrow (1961, 49:11): June and Ron Ormond's lost portrait of UFO huckster Reinhold O Schmidt, presented from a rare VHS source
Original theatrical trailer for White Lightnin' Road (2:49)
Radio spots (3:20)

Disc Two
Audio commentary with McDonough and actress, exotic dancer, fire eater, and carny queen Georgette Dante on The Exotic Ones (2023)
Audio commentary with McDonough, filmmaker Tim Ormond, and film restorationist Peter Conheim on The Burning Hell (2023)
Forty Acre Fued Radio Spots (3:56)
The Girl from Tobacco Row Radio spots (2:32)
The Exotic Ones Radio spots (5:34)

Disc Three
Audio commentary with documentarian Brian Rosenquist and Greg Pirkle, son of Baptist minister and Ormond collaborator Estus Pirkle, on If Footmen Tire You What Will Horses Do? (2023)
Estus W Pirkle Sermon (1970, 1:03:21): rare and previously unreleased archival audio recording
The Grim Reaper Radio spots (2:33)

Disc Four
Audio commentary with McDonough and Ormond on It's About The Second Coming (2023)
A Tribute to Houdini (1987, 59:49): directed by Tim Ormond, and featuring John Calvert performing an array of tricks inspired by celebrated escape artist and magician Harry Houdini
Lash LaRue: A Man and His Memories (1992, 1:10:30): Tim Ormond's rarely seen documentary in which the beloved western star reflects upon his life and work
June Carr: The Virtual Vaudevillian (1997, 30:17): Tim Ormond's loving portrait of his mother and collaborator, June Carr Ormond
Forgotten Memories (1997, 20:02): Tim Ormond's short drama starring June Ormond in which two women meet under extraordinary circumstances
Forgotten Memories Production Footage (14:49)
39 Stripes Radio spots (2:21)
Limited Edition exclusive 100-page book with an extended essay by Jimmy McDonough, Peter Conheim on the restorations, and full film credits
Limited Edition exclusive art cards


Blu-ray Release Date: June 12th, 2023

Transparent Blu-ray Cases inside Custom Box

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Indicator Blu-ray (May 2023): Indicator have transferred 13 feature films in their From Hollywood to Heaven: The Lost and Saved Films of the Ormond Family 1951-1997 Blu-ray set. The films are; Untamed Mistress (1956), Please Don't Touch Me (1963), Forty Acre Feud (1965), The Girl from Tobacco Row (1966), White Lightnin' Road (1967), The Exotic Ones (1968), If Footmen Tire You What Will Horses Do? (1971), The Burning Hell (1974), The Grim Reaper (1976), The Believer's Heaven (1977), 39 Stripes (1979), The Second Coming (1980) and The Sacred Symbol (1984) They are cited as being from a "new 2K restorations of If Footmen Tire You What Will Horses Do?, The Burning Hell, and The Believer's Heaven from original duplicate negatives - new 2K restoration of 39 Stripes from the only known surviving 16mm print. New 2K restorations of It's About The Second Coming from best-quality, surviving 16mm print elements - newly remastered presentations of Untamed Mistress, Please Don't Touch Me, White Lightnin' Road, The Girl from Tobacco Row, Forty Acre Feud, and The Exotic Ones from rare surviving Standard Definition master tapes and, lastly, standard definition presentations of The Grim Reaper and The Sacred Symbol, mastered from best-available sources." There are further descriptions before three of the films;

If Footmen Tire You What Will Horses Do? (1971) - "Reconstructed in 2018 from the only surviving duplicate 16mm negative and and analog sound masters. Its original camera reversal positive is considered lost. Extensive efforts were made to correct for severe color loss and deterioration of these remaining picture elements."
The Burning Hell (1974) - "Reconstructed in 2018 from the only surviving duplicate 16mm negative and and analog sound masters. Its original camera reversal positive is considered lost. Extensive efforts were made to correct for severe color loss and deterioration of these remaining picture elements.
The Believer's Heaven (1977) - "Restored in 2019 from the only surviving duplicate 16mm negative and and analog sound masters. Its original camera reversal positive is considered lost."

It should be noted - as stated in an email to me that "ALL of the Ormond archive was destroyed in a flood in the Nashville area in 2010. Only the Pirkle titles survived on film as (dupe) negatives, and that's only because the Pirkles had assumed the rights for those three films and had them at their home in Mississippi. That is the reason why every pre-Pirkle title in the set is from an old analog 1" master tape... because, literally, it was all consumed by floodwaters except those tapes."

I'm delighted to see long-time DVDBeaver friend Peter Conheim taking a large part in Project Coordination, Restoration Supervision and Audio Restoration and Remastering. The 1080P image is, of course, at the mercy of the surviving elements and production limitations. There are anomalies in varying form of damage from speckles to vertical and horizontal scratches as well as color flecks. Some films have more grain than others. We've included a few examples below. So we expect imperfections in the a/v and trust the restorations are showcases these films in the best possible digital format. In many of these later films the colors export highly pleasing depth - deep reds, yellows etc. We've included some examples of the image quality below to give you an idea. l found the films were very watchable on my system with only brief examples of noticeable irregularities - which added to the feeling you were seeing something very rare - grassroots, DIY, filmmaking.

NOTE: also involved in this project is the film director Nicolas Winding Refn (The Neon Demon, Drive etc.) as he also took part in the restoration of Joseph L. Anderson's "Spring Night, Summer Night".

NOTE: We have added 200 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-ray, Indicator use a linear PCM mono tracks (24 or 16-bit) in the original English language. Like the video - the audio has, predictable, sequences of weaker quality. There is music - example; The Mulcays performing Love Me Forever in Please Don't Touch Me and in Untamed Mistress I saw Walter Greene (The Brain from Planet Arous) listed. A few of the films have live, diegetic music - often southern Square Dance-related, a couple on harmonicas - which was also kinda cool. It sounds as it sounds - authentically scattered at times without overly-distracting, although obvious, dialogue syncs. Indicator offer optional English (SDH) subtitles on their 4-disc Region FREE Blu-ray set.

The Indicator Blu-ray offers a five commentaries; by Ormond biographer Jimmy McDonough - The Exotic Ones: That Fabulous Film-Making Family from Music City, USA - The Ormonds (presented by Refn)

on Please Don't Touch Me, with McDonough and actress, exotic dancer, fire eater, and carny queen Georgette Dante on The Exotic Ones - with McDonough, filmmaker Tim Ormond, and film restorationist Peter Conheim on The Burning Hell - with documentarian Brian Rosenquist and Greg Pirkle, son of Baptist minister and Ormond collaborator Estus Pirkle, on If Footmen Tire You What Will Horses Do? and with McDonough and Ormond on It's About The Second Coming. So much Ormond history is revealed. There is so much more; 1961's Edge of Tomorrow - June and Ron Ormond's wonderful lost portrait of UFO huckster Reinhold O. Schmidt, presented from a rare VHS source. Indicator include a rare and previously unreleased Estus W. Pirkle sermon archival audio recording lasting over an hour. It is fascinating. A Tribute to Houdini is from 1987, directed by Tim Ormond, and featuring John Calvert performing an array of tricks inspired by celebrated escape artist and magician Harry Houdini running almost an hour-long. We also get Tim Ormond's rarely seen 1992 documentary, Lash LaRue: A Man and His Memories, in which the beloved western star reflects upon his life and work. June Carr: The Virtual Vaudevillian is from 1997 running 1/2 hour. It is Tim Ormond's loving portrait of his mother and collaborator, June Carr Ormond. Forgotten Memories is Tim Ormond's 1997 20-minute drama starring June Ormond in which two women meet under extraordinary circumstances. Included is some production footage of that short. Lastly, the discs have original theatrical trailers and radio spots for a handful of the films. The package has a limited edition exclusive 100-page book with an extended essay by Jimmy McDonough, Peter Conheim on the restorations, and full film credits plus there are LE exclusive art cards.

Ron Ormond (born Vittorio Di Naro aka Vic Narro) took his surname from the magician and hypnotist Ormond McGill who he befriended. June Carr performed in vaudeville singer and after a six week whirlwind romance they married eventually becoming partners in film production as actors, authors, directors, producer and screenwriters. The filmmaking migration from westerns (forming a partnership with Alfred "Lash" LaRue), exploitation films and musicals, to Christian films (after a near death experience crash in Ron's own single-engine plane) - addressing the second coming of Jesus Christ - is one of the more remarkable genre-shifts in cinema history. The later bizarre films shared concerns over communism and the importance of adhering to American founding principles with fire-brand Southern preachers, impeccably dressed, like evangelist Estus Washington Pirkle and his interpretation of what the Bible has to say about hell [eyebrows raised!] Aside from the Ron Ormond directed Mesa of Lost Women (1953), reviewed HERE as part of Image Entertainment's Femme Fatale DVD Collection - his films have been very hard to find on digital - marking Indicator's From Hollywood to Heaven: The Lost and Saved Films of the Ormond Family 1951-1997 Blu-ray set as truly eventful. Some may find a connection to Herschell Gordon Lewis but I enjoyed this set much more with the wide swing in genres from flaming stripper tassels and oversized harmonicas to religious and anti-communist rhetoric. I love the tidbits like rockabilly musician Thomas Paulsley 'Sleepy' LaBeef as a 'Swamp Thing' in The Exotic Ones. This Blu-ray set represents one of the truly fascinating stories of ambitious Independent filmmaking stacked with rare finds, commentaries, documentaries and a booklet. Indicator does it again with a strong labor-of-love commitment to extraordinary, lesser-seen, cinema. Wow! Absolutely recommended!

Gary Tooze

 


Menus / Extras

 

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Blu-ray 2

Blu-ray 3

Blu-ray 4


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Ron Ormond as "Nemo" in The Exotic Ones
 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


Examples of damage, cue-blips and inferior qualitative

 

(CLICK to ENLARGE)

 

 


Examples of NSFW (Not Safe For Work) visuals (Mouse Over - click to enlarge)

 

 


 

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Bonus Captures:

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