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Betty Boop - The Essential Collection - Volume 1 [Blu-ray]
(played by Mae Questel, Bonnie Poe or Ann Little, 1932-1937)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Fleischer Studios
Region: 'A' (confirmed - B, C untested)
Runtime: 1:23:49.049 (12X avr. 6-8.5 minutes)
The Foxy Hunter (1937) Played by Mae Questel
Disc Size: 18,403,225,668 bytes
Short Size: 1,936,564,224 bytes
Video Bitrate: 27.01 Mbps
Chapters: 12 (one per short)
Case: Standard Blu-ray case inside cardboard box
Release date: August 20th, 2013
Aspect ratio: 1.33:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 828 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 828 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit)
Bitrate Sample (one short):
Description: Newly re-mastered in HD from 4K scans of the original negatives and finegrains. Regarded as one of the first and most famous sex symbols on the animated screen; she was a symbol of the Depression era and a reminder of the more carefree days of the Roaring Twenties. Her popularity was drawn larger from adult audiences and the cartoons, while seemingly surreal, contained many sexual and psychological elements. "Boop-Oop-A-Doop" The queen of the animated screen returns to allure and entice audiences all over again in this fantastic four-volume compilation featuring many of her greatest adventures. Volume One includes 12 animated short films available for the first time on DVD and Blu-ray. All 12 shorts were produced by Max Fleischer and directed by his brother Dave Fleischer. Featuring the voices of Mae Questel, Bonnie Poe and Ann Little as Betty Boop. Also featuring guest voices of Cab Calloway, Jack Mercer, William Pennell and The Royal Samoans.
“What is it about Betty Boop that can still haunt your dreams long
after her flesh-and-blood rivals fade away?” - Chicago Tribune
Betty Boop was unique among female cartoon characters because she
represented a sexualized woman. Other female cartoon characters of the
same period, such as Minnie Mouse, displayed their underwear or bloomers
regularly, in the style of childish or comical characters, not a fully
defined woman's form. Many other female cartoons were merely clones of
their male co-stars, with alterations in costume, the addition of
eyelashes, and a female voice. Betty Boop wore short dresses, high
heels, a garter, and her breasts were highlighted with a low, contoured
bodice that showed cleavage. In her cartoons, male characters frequently
try to sneak peeks at her while she's changing or simply going about her
business. In Betty Boop's Bamboo Isle, she does the hula wearing nothing
but a lei, strategically placed to cover her breasts, and a grass skirt.
This was repeated in her first cameo appearance in Popeye the Sailor
(1933). There was, however, a certain girlish quality to the character.
She was drawn with a head more similar to a baby's than an adult's in
proportion to her body. This suggested the combination of girlishness
and maturity that many people saw in the flapper type, which Betty
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
Olive Films offer a unique package in Betty Boop - Essential Collection - Volume 1. It has 12 shorts from the 30s. has a modest Blu-ray transfer from Olive Films. This is only single-layered and contrast varies - improving as the shorts get younger but I was surprised at how well these 4K scans looked. They are beautiful in-motion, and lines are reasonably tight. Many exhibit some textured grain and there are very few heavy damage marks or speckles. Greyscale is notable in many of the 1934-1937 shorts. I was impressed with the appearance. This Blu-ray will get a lot of play in my house - easy to show guests prior to a film night. Thumbs up!
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
Audio comes via a DTS-HD Master mono track at 828 kbps. Some of the shorts have musica from the period - depending on the story - and, like the image, is better than I was anticipating. Sure, things are not crystal clear, but I don't imagine they were originally. You can hear Betty's squeaks and these are mostly visual gags not relying heavily on the sound effects. There are no subtitles.
No supplements - although two of the shorts contain some live-action sequences - there is really nothing in the way of extras.
August 9th, 2013
About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.
Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who
focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I
find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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