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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

War-Gods of the Deep aka "City in the Sea" or "The City Under the Sea"  [Blu-ray]

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/Tourneur.htm, 1965

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Bruton Film Productions

Video: Kino Lorber

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 1:24:22.098 

Disc Size: 19,305,078,547 bytes

Feature Size: 16,843,413,504 bytes

Video Bitrate: 23.56 Mbps

Chapters: 8

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: August 11th, 2015

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 2.35:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1592 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1592 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)

 

Subtitles:

None

 

Extras:

• Interview with Tab Hunter (11:09)

Trailer (2:21)

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: Newly Re-mastered in HD! They Became Pawns In A War Beneath The Waves! Master of suspense and horror Vincent Price (The Fall of House of Usher) takes on square-jawed Tab Hunter (The Loved One) in this fantastic underwater tale teeming with adventure! Based on an Edgar Allen Poe (Tales of Terror) story and co-starring David Tomlinson (Mary Poppins) and Susan Hart (Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine), this turbulent thriller pits gill-men against he-men, with a sexy woman caught between and surges with excitement from initial fade-in to climatic fadeout. When a slimy, gilled monster from the deep kidnaps the beautiful Jill (Hart) it'll take her boyfriend (Hunter), his sidekick (Tomlinson) and his sidekick's sidekick - a rooster - to get her back! Following her trail into the deep, they are shocked to discover a lost underwater city, ruled by a ruthless captain (Price) and an army of mutated sea creatures, who imprison the hapless landlubbers... while a restless volcano threatens to bury them all! Directed by the great Jacques Tourneur (Night of the Demon).

 

 

The Film:

This sci-fi fantasy film was supposedly inspired by a line from an Edgar Allen Poe poem. It is also the last film made by distinguished director Jacques Tourneur. The adventure begins when the widowed ruler of a sub-oceanic kingdom spies a woman on the land who closely resembles his late wife. Believing that she is the reincarnation of his beloved spouse, the mer-king orders his gill men to kidnap her. Fortunately two courageous divers and their pet rooster brave the mysterious depths and the deadly gillmen to rescue her.

Excerpt from MRQE located HERE

If the world was just and kind, then the sentence, “It’s a movie where Vincent Price stars as a madman who rules over an underwater society of fishmen prone to kidnapping scantily clad beautiful women,” would indicate the existence of probably one of the greatest films ever made. But the world is often cold and heartless and it often enjoys toying with us mere mortals as did the petty and jealous Greek gods of old. Therefore, the sentence, “It’s a movie where Vincent Price stars as a madman who rules over an underwater society of fishmen prone to kidnapping scantily clad beautiful women,” does not indicate the existence of one of the greatest movies of all time, but instead, indicates the existence of a shocking dull film in which Vincent Price sits in a cave while a couple stiffs run around in tunnels, and then some stuff blows up at the end. This, sadly, is the fantasy world conjured up by the lackluster War Gods of the Deep — a modestly entertaining film in spots, but a tremendous letdown given the talent in front of and behind the camera.

Excerpt from Teleport City located HERE

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

The single-layered Kino Lorber Blu-ray of Jacques Tourneur's War-Gods of the Deep looks quite strong.  The visuals have solid detail and impressive contrast. Some colors are quite bright and there is no noise in the many darker scenes. I thought the 1080P presentation was consistent and well above-average for this genre/era.  The source must have been in top-notch shape and I had no qualms at all about the Blu-ray video.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Kino Lorber use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track at 1592 kbps in the original English language. There are some effects (underwater equipment, explosions etc.) that have some desirable depth.  Benefitting is Stanley Black's (The Day the Earth Caught Fire, 1960's Hammer film Stop Me Before I Kill! ), often aggressive, score supporting the sci-fi and undersea realm.  It all sounds fine with clear consistent dialogue. There are no subtitles offered and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.

 

Extras :

What looks like a 'new', relatively interesting, interview with Tab Hunter for about 11-minutes and a, poor quality, trailer.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
War-Gods of the Deep pushes my nostalgia barometer unusually high. I must have seen it as a child although I don't recall it. My 10-year old soon seemed as focused on it as I, probably, was at the same age watching it on Saturday afternoon TV (I was only 3 when it was released theatrically). It seems some aren't very enthusiastic as I - but, there is value, IMO. Production values were solid enough and although master-storyteller Tourneur was not in top-form - this is significantly better than similar efforts of the early 60's. The Kino Lorber Blu-ray provides a super 1080P presentation and, I may be in a minority, but I will watch this again. 

Gary Tooze

July 22nd, 2015

 

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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