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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Grave Robbers From Outer Space")

 

directed by Ed Wood Jr.

USA 1959

 

"Can your heart stand the shocking facts about Graverobbers from Outer Space?"

 

That's the question on the lips of Criswell (well-known professional psychic noted for 'Criswell Predicts') of this tale of flying saucers, zombies and cardboard tombstones. A pair of aliens, angered by the "stupid minds" of planet Earth, set up shop in a California cemetery. Their plan: to animate an army of the dead to march on the capitals of the world. (The fact that they have only managed to resurrect three zombies to date has not discouraged them.) An intrepid airline pilot living near the cemetery must rescue his wife from this low-budget terror. "Can you prove it *didn't* happen?"

***

Firstly this is far from the worst film of all time... but with its exposure in Tim Burtons marvelous "Ed Wood" certainly gave it, and the marginal (at best) director, some renewed nostalgic notoriety. And it is much deserved. We meet people everyday who have real passion - and for Ed Wood it was making films - a profession that he, unfortunately, did not excel at. Still this film is part of cinema history and it is capable of tickling any film fans fancy with its obvious flaws and good intentions.

 

 

Posters

 

Theatrical Release:  July 1959

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Comparison:

Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Legend Films - Region 1- NTSC vs. Legend Films - Region FREE - Blu-ray

1) Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC  LEFT

2) Legend Films B+W - Region 1- NTSC MIDDLE

3) Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray RIGHT

 

Covers

 

 

The individual DVD:

    

  

The Image disc is also available in the (a good deal!):

REVIEWED HERE

        

         

Runtime 1:19:09 1:19:09 1:18:16.692

Video

1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.78 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s 

1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.86 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s 

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 232,548,414,746 bytes

Feature: 15,815,718,912 bytes

Video Bitrate: 21.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

 

Bitrate: Legend

.

Bitrate: Legend Blu-ray

.

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0)  English (Dolby Digital 2.0)

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1651 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1651 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentary:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1599 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1599 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)

Subtitles None None English (for Trivia only), None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Image Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Includes the Retrospective Documentary Flying Saucers Over Hollywood: The Plan 9 Companion (1992, 111 min.), featuring interviews with stars Gregory Walcott, Carl Anthony, Paul Marco, Vampira and Conrad Brooks, plus sci-fi historian Forrest J. Ackerman and directors/fans Sam Raimi and Joe Dante

• Trailer

DVD Release Date: February 15th, 2000

Keep Case
Chapters: 20

Release Information:
Studio: Legend Films

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Audio commentary from Mike Nelson of “Mystery Science Theater 3000.”
• Deleted Scenes
• Ed Wood Home Movies
• trailers
• Lost 8 plans
• Ed Wood Commercials


DVD Release Date:
June 27th 2006
Keep Case
Chapters: 12

Release Information:
Studio: Legend Films

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Audio commentary from Mike Nelson of “Mystery Science Theater 3000.”
• Ed Wood Home Movies (2:06)
• trailers
• Ed Wood Commercials (3:45)


Blu-ray Release Date: March 6th 2012
Standard
Blu-ray Case
Chapters: 13

Comments:

 

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

ADDITION: Legend - Region FREE Blu-ray - July:  Firstly, this should be widescreen. Period. I revisit this film every once in a while - I've even memorized much of the dialogue.

Like their DVD, Legend Films have given us a colorized version and the original black and white presentation of the film. Both have the exact same technical transfer, and both are 1080P. It was beginning to seem that each new edition that Legend did - the image became lighter and lighter (one way to hide light scratches). Including the film's inherent visual weaknesses I could see some digital artifacts - mostly in the beginning. Once we get into the meat of the film - I was less-critical of the 1080P image. But the majority of the film looked okay (note my comments are only about the b+w version - I have no interest in the colorized). I guess I am kind of irked at the prominence given the colorized transfer - the original is again only a supplement. The lossless audio is actually quite strong (relative to the DVDs). Both the commentary and sporadic 'trivia subtitles' are accessible on the b+w (on the fly). We lose the Deleted Scenes and Lost 8 Plans but keep Ed Wood's home movies and commercials. The Blu-ray price is right (less than $10) and it's region FREE - I see the value since I enjoy the film so much - a great double bill with Ed Wood (Tim Burton)... which I, actually, feel like watching right now!

NOTE: Joe tells us in email: "Recently I purchased the colorized Legend blu-ray release of Plan 9 From Outer Space. I actually like colorization of old films when its done well and as long as the black & white is offered in the same release. I was horrified, however, with this Legend release to see a bit of bastardization thrown in for no apparent reason other than someone over at Legend thought it was "funny".

Don't know if you caught this (I didn't see it mentioned in your review), but at 30:47 into the colorization version, a picture on the wall behind the bed is "photoshoped" over with a some other picture of a man and woman. The corruption only lasts a moment in this one scene, but for me it's an absolute unnecessary contamination into an important film (and not funny at all).
"
 (Thanks Joe!)

***

 

ADDITION - Legend Films release - Jan 2006: Both the black + white and color versions on the Legend DVD are an improvement over the older Image Entertainment release which has a shade of brightness boosting and has more visible damage to the print. There is a shade of cropping in spots (more probably 'zooming-in') on the Image release.

I'm glad I have both releases as the extras on each edition are quite good. Flying Saucers Over Hollywood: The Plan 9 Companion on the Image disc is a fabulous addition and although I'm usually not keen on Mike Nelson's commentaries, I did enjoy this one on the Legend edition. Plus there are some other oddities on the Legend release like home movies of Ed putting on a feminine sweater etc.. 

NOTE: DVDBeaver never condones manipulations from original theatrical presentations, but we soften a bit for colorization of certain films, especially if the original black and white version is included (as Legend Films always do!). This really just gives another campy reason to watch this piece of cinema history... so we endorse it - have some fun!

****

The print for this film is in acceptable condition. Relatively sharp, with some slight contrast boosting. Audio is a bit better than in the previous releases, but nothing to rave about - it is a function of the filming process that was used. Some real effort went into making this DVD with the addition of the "Plan 9 Companion" documentary. A trailer is also included. Great image and good extras. It screams for a commentary - and I suspect one will come one day.

Gary Tooze



Menus

(Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC LEFT vs. Legend Films - Region 1- NTSC RIGHT)

 
 

 

 

Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray


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

 

Screen Captures

 

Trivia Subtitle sample from the Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

2) Legend Films B+W - Region 1- NTSC SECOND

3) Legend Films COLOR - Region 1- NTSC THIRD

4) Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

2) Legend Films B+W - Region 1- NTSC SECOND

3) Legend Films COLOR - Region 1- NTSC THIRD

4) Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

2) Legend Films B+W - Region 1- NTSC SECOND

3) Legend Films COLOR - Region 1- NTSC THIRD

4) Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

2) Legend Films B+W - Region 1- NTSC SECOND

3) Legend Films COLOR - Region 1- NTSC THIRD

4) Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

2) Legend Films B+W - Region 1- NTSC SECOND

3) Legend Films COLOR - Region 1- NTSC THIRD

4) Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

2) Legend Films B+W - Region 1- NTSC SECOND

3) Legend Films COLOR - Region 1- NTSC THIRD

4) Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

1) Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

2) Legend Films B+W - Region 1- NTSC SECOND

3) Legend Films COLOR - Region 1- NTSC THIRD

4) Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

2) Legend Films B+W - Region 1- NTSC SECOND

3) Legend Films COLOR - Region 1- NTSC THIRD

4) Legend - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

More Blu-ray Captures

 

Covers

 

 

The individual DVD:

    

  

The Image disc is also available in the (a good deal!):

REVIEWED HERE

        

         

 





 

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Gary Tooze

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