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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes aka 'X' [Blu-ray]

 

(Roger Corman, 1963)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: American International Pictures (AIP)

Video: Kino Lorber

 

Disc:

Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:19:12.164

Disc Size: 22,773,765,723 bytes

Feature Size: 19,425,699,840 bytes

Video Bitrate: 25.69 Mbps

Chapters: 8

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: May 12th, 2015

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

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)
Commentaries:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1642 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1642 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio English 1574 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1574 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)

 

Subtitles:

English, None

 

Extras:

• Special Features: Terror Vision! Legendary Director Joe Dante on X (6:07)
Audio Commentary with Roger Corman
Audio Commentary by Film Historian Tim Lucas
Rare Prologue (5:00)
Trailers From Hell with Mick Garris (2:36)
Original Theatrical Trailer (2:19)

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: Dare To Look Into The Eyes Of Madness! Fantastic tale of heart-pounding suspense, this harrowing and terrifying sci-fi shocker will fascinate horror film fans. Starring Ray Milland (The Premature Burial), it charts the startling transformation of a doctor so blinded by ambition that he dares to glimpse eternity! When the brilliant Dr. Xavier (Milland) concocts a serum to improve human sight, he stumbles upon a formula for x-ray vision. Inspired by its awesome medical potential, but shunned by his short-sighted colleagues, the doctor tests the potion on himself, only to discover that his ability to see through walls, clothing and flesh is slowly eclipsed by and insatiable desire to look still further - even if it means seeing more than any mortal can bear! Featuring wonderful direction by the great Roger Corman (Tales of Terror) and a strong supporting cast that includes Harold J. Stone (The Wrong Man), John Hoyt (Blackboard Jungle) and comedy legend Don Rickles (Run Silent, Run Deep).

 

 

The Film:

Ray Milland plays Dr. James Xavier, a world renowned scientist experimenting with human eyesight. He devises a drug, that when applied to the eyes, enables the user to see beyond the normal realm of our sight (ultraviolet rays etc.) it also gives the user the power to see through objects. Xavier tests this drug on himself, when his funding is cut off. As he continues to test the drug on himself, Xavier begins to see, not only through walls and clothes, but through the very fabric of reality!

Excerpt from DVDBeaver's review located HERE

Corman's intelligent sci-fi movie has a powerful performance from Milland as Dr Xavier, whose experiments with X-Ray eye-drops allow him to cheat at cards, diagnose patients' internal complaints, and see through women's clothing (fortunately for them, they're all standing with their naughty bits shielded by inexplicably opaque plants and pieces of furniture). As the treatment continues, however, Milland becomes terrified as he starts to see beyond the material world into the heart of the universe. The rudimentary special effects and cheapo production notwithstanding, this is an undoubted cult classic.

Excerpt from TimeOut Film Guide located HERE

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

Much to the delight of Corman fans - one of his most desirable titles has made it to Blu-ray from Kino Lorber. X: The Man With the X-Ray Eyes is brilliant fun! The image takes a wide step beyond the old DVD - from the The Roger Corman Collection DVD package (and compared three captures below).  This is single-layered with a supportive bitrate for the 1-hour 20-minute quickie. There is a superior tightness and some depth not present on the SD. Skin tones normalize and contrast has some decent layers. The 1.85:1 aspect ratio has been maintained. There is some thickness to the visuals but this is more a function of the original appearance, I suspect, with appealing textures. Colors are bright with depth. This Blu-ray provides a consistent and vastly improved presentation for your home theatre one rainy Sunday afternoon.

 

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

 

Subtitle Sample - Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

 

1) MGM (Roger Corman Collection) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) MGM (Roger Corman Collection) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) MGM (Roger Corman Collection) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

More Blu-ray Captures

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Kino use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel at 1559 kbps and it seems to do a competent job of exporting the film's modest sound requirements. The score is by Les Baxter (The Comedy of Terrors, Panic in the Year Zero, US version of Baron Blood, The Beast Within) and is well supported via the lossless. There are some effects with depth, but it is the music that is memorable. There are optional English subtitles offered and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.

 

Extras :

Kino include the older audio commentary with Roger Corman as found on The Roger Corman Collection DVD package as well as a, delightful, new audio commentary by film historian Tim Lucas who always educates and entertains with his knowledge of the production. We also get 6-minutes of Terror Vision! where director Joe Dante talks about his love for X. There is also a rarely seen prologue that lasts for a full 5-minutes - for those curious. As well as an original theatrical trailer, we get a short segment with Mick Garris of Trailers From Hell. The commentaries are much appreciated!

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
As far as classic camp cinema - I don't know that it gets any better than X: The Man With the X-Ray Eyes. It's a perfect way to start a 'B'-movie night and the storyline remains completely compelling. I wish they had done an entire series of 'X' films. The Kino Lorber Blu-ray has plenty of value with the beneficial supplements and its vast improvement over the old SD. This will fit snugly on my 're-watchable' shelf. I never tire of it. Strongly recommended! 

Gary Tooze

April 14th, 2014

 

 

 

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.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze

 

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