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Directed by Arthur Lubin
USA
1944

 

Prepare to be dazzled as all the wonder, excitement, triumph, and treachery of the Arabian Nights come vibrantly to life in Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves! Orphaned as a young child and adopted by a band of notorious thieves, now-grown Ali Baba (Jon Hall) sets out to avenge his father’s murder, reclaim the royal throne, and rescue his beloved Amara (Maria Montez) from the iron fist of his treacherous enemy. Lushly shot in glorious Technicolor® and featuring a cast of thousands, Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves is a cinematic feast for the senses to be enjoyed time and again.

Posters

Theatrical Release: January 14th, 1944

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Comparison:

Universal - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Eureka - Blu-ray

Universal - Region 1 - NTSC LEFT vs. Eureka -  Blu-ray - RIGHT

Box Covers

Distribution Universal Home Video - Region 1 - NTSC Eureka Video - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:27:09  1:27:28.243
Video 1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 8.68 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s   

1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 21,825,217,446 bytes

Feature: 21,697,038,336 bytes

Video Bitrate: 27.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate: Univesal

Bitrate: Blu-ray

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0)  DTS-HD Master Audio English 1567 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1567 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio English 1559 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1559 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Subtitles English, French, Spanish, None English, None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Universal

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• none

DVD Release Date: July 7th, 2009

Keep Case
Chapters: 18

Release Information:
Studio: Eureka

1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 21,825,217,446 bytes

Feature: 21,697,038,336 bytes

Video Bitrate: 27.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Edition Details:

• Isolated Music and effects track

Blu-ray Release Date: August 30th, 2010
Standard
Blu-ray Case
Chapters: 15

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Eureka - Blu-ray (August 2010): Quite a substantial improvement - in comparative analysis the DVD looks to be vertically stretched.  Grain is apparent and the image flows nicely in motion on the single-layered Blu-ray.  Audio makes a bump as well with a lossless track giving some depth to the 2.0 channel stereo.  There are no extras save the isolated effects and music track - also in a lossless transfer. Eureka's Blu-ray bests the DVD in every area although colors aren't as rich. This is a great boys adventure with some romance tucked inside - easily worth the price to those keen!

****

This looks quite strong. I don't have the enthusiasm I did for The Trail of the Lonesome Pine but this is still far better than I would have anticipated. It's hard to believe this film is over 65-years old. This is another DVD release of the 'Universal Backlot Series' - described as 'an ongoing collection of rare gems, overlooked, ground breaking work and films of historical and cultural importance - many for the first time ever on DVD'. Detail has a few stellar moments but I'd still say the color is the star.  Universal have used a similar method (exporting the exact same bitrate) for transferring these classic - and it produces very impressive results. There is some occasional noise but it didn't hinder my viewing. I hope the screen captures below give you a decent idea on how it will look on your system. NOTE: There are PAL editions so the film available on DVD, but I seriously doubt they could hold a candle to this in regards to image quality.  

The 2.0 channel mono audio is unremarkable but reasonably clear and consistent. Certainly good enough for watching and enjoying the film. There are no supplements - not even a trailer so the pricing again seems somewhat aggressive but if you are a fan of this type of nostalgic adventure - you can't really go wrong. I must say, 'The Caribbean Cyclone' looked pretty sweet.  

Gary W. Tooze

 



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Screen Captures

 

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Universal - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. Eureka -  Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 


Universal - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. Eureka -  Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 


Universal - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. Eureka -  Blu-ray - BOTTOM
 

 


Universal - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. Eureka -  Blu-ray - BOTTOM
 

 


Universal - Region 1 - NTSC TOP vs. Eureka -  Blu-ray - BOTTOM'
 

 


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Box Covers

Distribution Universal Home Video - Region 1 - NTSC Eureka Video - Blu-ray




 

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