Blu-ray Review “Singin’ in the Rain: 60th Anniversary – Ultimate Collector’s Edition”

Directors: Gene Kelly, Stanley Donen
Starring: Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds, Donald O’Connor,
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Distributed by: Warner Home Video
Release Date: July 17, 2012
Running Time: 103 minutes

Ultimate Collector’s Edition: 5 out of 5 stars
Film: 5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 5 out of 5 stars

Warner Home Video is really setting the standards high for quality collector’s edition releases. After the recent amazing anniversary editions of “Ben-Hur”, “Casablanca” and “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”, Warner Home Video has out-down themselves again. This is my favorite of all the ultimate collector’s editions. “Singin’ in the Rain” is one of my favorite films of all time and continues to entertain even after 60 years. The film is so timeless and contains such memorable songs, wonderful dance sequences and of course Gene Kelly, who is alone amazing. 10 years ago this was the first film for WHV’s to receive their “Ultra-Resolution” process. But that is not enough for this 60th anniversary Blu-ray debut, “Singin’ in the Rain” has been made to look and sound even better with a complete 4k scan restoration of the Technicolor 3-strip negatives and a new uncompressed DTS-Master audio track. What more can a fan of this film ask for?

So if all that amazing detail above isn’t enough for you and you are asking what makes the “Singin’ in the Rain: 60th Anniversary – Ultimate Collector’s Edition”, so ultimate? Firstly this the first time the film has ever graced the Blu-ray format. This new edition like the past Ultimate Collector’s Editions comes packaged in a beautiful box (11½w x 8h x 3d) with a bunch of amazing goodies. Inside this set included a three disc DigiPak that includes one Blu-ray disc and two DVD’s.  The first DVD is jam packed with bonus features and the second is a copy of the film.  There is a nice hardcover 48-page book spread out with wonderful photographs and production notes from the film. There are three miniature reproductions of the theatrical door panel posters.  But wait there is still more…what is “Singin’ in the Rain” without an umbrella? This release comes with an amazing themed and full-size commemorative inside of a red nylon case.

Let’s get to the special features now.  It just keeps getting better and better with this release.  There is a brand new documentary called “Singin’ in the Rain: Raining on a New Generation”, which is located on the Blu-ray disc and is even in high definition. It runs just under an hour and is absolutely amazing. The rest of the special features are located on its own DVD with another bunch of vintage features. Starting off there is a wonderful and very jam-packed commentary track with by Stanley Donen, Debbie Reynolds, Donald O’Connor, Cyd Charisse, Kathleen Freeman, screenwriters Betty Comden and Adolph Green, filmmaker Baz Luhrmann, and film historian Rudy Behlmer. It is simply wonderful. Next up is “Great Performances: Musicals Great Musicals: The Arthur Freed Unit at MGM”, which a 1996 PBS documentary about the career of producer/songwriter Arthur Freed. “What a Glorious Feeling: The Making of Singin’ in the Rain” is a 2002 doc hosting by Reynolds, which is a little dated but very informative.

Continuing on, we still have a lot of features including “Excerpts from Features Where Songs Originated”, which focuses on the many of Singin’ in the Rain’s songs that originally debuted in earlier films. Included for example is “All I Do Is Dream of You” from Sadie McKee (1934). Continuing with the music, there is a Jukebox included which you can create, save and listen to an audio/video playlist of Singin’ in the Rain songs. There is an outtake musical number with Debbie Reynolds for “You are My Lucky Star”. We get transported to MGM’s scoring stage for Scoring Sessions from the film, running about 75 minutes. There are also a collection of 12 film clips from earlier films with Freed/Brown songs included. Lastly we get a photo montage of production photographs and a theatrical trailer, which I still stop and watch before going on Disney’s Hollywood Studios’ The Great Movie Ride, never fail.

Celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Singin’ in the Rain with the commemorative Blu-ray edition, out July 17th! http://bit.ly/N6vGNf
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“Singin’ in the Rain”, set in the days of Hollywood’s transition from silent films to “talkies,” continues to this day to provide pure cinematic entertainment. It stars Gene Kelly at the pinnacle of his career and co-stars Debbie Reynolds, Donald O’Connor, Cyd Charisse, Jean Hagen and Rita Moreno. Written by legendary musical “book” writers Betty Comden and Adolph Green, Singin’ in the Rain was helmed by legendary directors Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen. The film was nominated for two Academy Awards ® and has been ranked as one of the Top 10 Greatest Films of All Time by the AFI and Entertainment Weekly, among others.

AFI’s #1 Movie Musical will be offered in a new limited and numbered gift set edition with four hours of bonus content and will be beautifully packaged and ready for new generations of fans to enjoy. The Blu-ray & DVD Pack will be priced at $84.99 SRP. A single disc Blu-ray will also be available for $19.98 SRP and a Two-disc Special Edition DVD for $14.96 SRP.

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