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The version I have is quite nice, with eight songs interspersed with some pretty cool interviews, especially those with Ginger Baker. The film is relatively unrestored, with lots of grain and dirt, but otherwise in beautiful condition. I cannot now remember the history of how I got it, but I am quite certain it was NOT from videotape.
Is this the same concert you have?
I tried to upload a screen snapshot but for the past year I have been unable to upload anything to this site.
Last edited by johnmeyer; 19th Sep 2019 at 19:24.
I'm sure it's the same Blu-Ray I have:
[Attachment 50225 - Click to enlarge]
"The date is November the 26th, 1968, a British rock group called simply Cream are making their farewell appearance at one of London's greatest concert houses, the Royal Albert Hall..."
My ex got really mad because I remembered her birthday only because she was born on November 28, 1962 and I'd reverse calculate based on Cream's last performance!
I'm really surprised that you find the image quality tolerable, much less beautiful! Maybe like the OP (gaahhh...can't believe I said that!) I'm jaded into believing that a better version somehow exists. As I stated above, I've been watching this on home video since 1981 and with every re-release there's a promise that they've improved the quality this time! *SIGH*
The grain, dirt and scratches were always there in every release. What's odd is that the concert was captured on videotape and transferred to film, which i believe is the reason for the dirt and scratches. I can't find the Youtube video right now, but I've see the opening (which is a long shot from above) of the BBC broadcast version and it looks much better than the rest of the video/film. I seem to recall that long shot was done on film, so I wonder what else may exist on film.
The audio was always bad, no matter how much they claim the "restoration" did. But ultimately, it's the music that really matters and why I've been watching/listening to it for nearly 30 years!
I just checked my Blu-Ray case and realized (remembered) it's a Japanese release. I also have the DVDs (two different versions) somewhere.
The Blu-Ray's video/audio quality is better than the DVD, but not enough to warrant the purchase. It's the same ~80 min version as the DVD without the extra songs mentioned in the Wiki article. Hmmm...I'll have to look for my DVDs as I've forgotten about the extras.
As I mentioned earlier, supposedly the entire concert without the interviews was shown in theaters, but other than the one or two times I've read about it, nothing more has ever been said about it. IIRC, the complete footage was supposedly lost. But you never know what might show up someday!
As a video testament to Cream it's invaluable as little footage exists, but as Ginger Baker has often said, "Cream was better than that", and musically some of the audio bootlegs show much better they could be.
As for the filming, according to the Wiki article both video and film was used:
"The band had performed two sets at the Albert Hall, but it is believed only the second set was filmed in its entirety. Several times during the performance, it is apparent that the on-screen shot is not in sync with the audio. In fact, in several songs, including during Ginger Baker's drum solo, he seems to change clothes at lightning speed due to careless post-editing, as well as Eric Clapton playing 2 different guitars. This is because footage from both sets, with the band wearing different clothes and Clapton using a Gibson Firebird for the first set, a Gibson 335 for the second, were edited together. The BBC used 4 static cameras and 2 hand held cams, all recording onto video tape, whilst Palmer himself filmed footage at the front of the stage, utilising a 16mm film camera. The difference in quality can be detected easily during the broadcast. However, the BBC "Pete Drummond" version was better quality overall, and is the only version that has these 16mm film clips removed – the remastered release on the 2005 DVD presents both audio and video in excellent quality."
Well I will have to watch the dvd I have later tonight. The booklet says 'no editing' and does not mention any 16 mm film although I seem to recall reading that elsewhere. Wiki should not always be taken as gospel.
Surely the 2005 dvd is the much later 're-union' also from the R.A.H. But it's also been a while since I watched that as well except that the case mentions no earlier footage even as an extra.
For years in between updates, several Magnetic Video original titles (like Cleopatra, Hello Dolly, Dr Doolittle) were still sold from distributor warehouse "new old stock" long after Magnetic Video technically went out of business and became CBS Fox in 1981. Some, like "Valley Of The Dolls", sold out completely and disappeared until much later re-issue on LaserDisc. The industry was very different back then: the studios mostly relied on third-party middlemen to move stock between them and retailers (and as a buffer they could force to store slow-selling merchandise).
Last edited by orsetto; 20th Sep 2019 at 10:17.
Yes, they reunited in 2005, returning to the Royal Albert Hall after 37 years.
Taking a quick glance again at the Blu-Ray and thinking about it, I'm pretty sure it's all 16mm footage as the alternate opening shot with the video camera is distinctly different.
The "no editing" is surely because the movie has been often been released in the shorter, ~50 min version. Which is why the ~80 min version is often referred to as the Extended Version when it's really the original TV/theatrical version with the interviews.
Let's see the OP say something about this conversation! LOL
That may well be the case. On the booklet it states that the tv version was commissioned by the BBC as part of their 'Omnibus' series. I do not think the longer one ever played on the tv over here and was restricted to the cinema as a 'second feature'
Amazon.uk shows two dvds issued in 2001. The one I have shows the trio standing, arms intertwined. This was issued by a German Co BMG (it even has a German commentary as an extra). The other one appears to be just the 45 min cut with head 'n shoulder portraits of the guys and issued by IMC.
There is another release in 2015 with the band posed very sixties-look and looks like a poster for the actual show complete with other acts. Again this is only reported to be the 45 min cut but that may be the 'remastered' one. No label is disclosed.
As to what the OP might think, I stopped caring some 5 pages ago.
Thanks DB83! Your replies prompted me to check Amazon and I found this release which I thought was just the DVD, but also has a Blu-Ray. This is probably what Johnmeyer and you have?
[Attachment 50231 - Click to enlarge]
It was only $14, so I just ordered it to add to my collection, just in case it's different from what I already have!
I also learned that I was wrong. My videotape was from Meda (Media Home Entertainment), not Magnetic Video. I mistook the image of the Magnetic Home Video box for the MEDA box which was also yellow-orangeish.
It dawned on me when I found this intro from the tape on Youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cJyc4YlgFA
Edit: Sorry, I can't remove the thumbnail.
^^ My friend, can you direct me to the Amazon listing for the above.
I hope I am wrong but that looks to be a fake since the top graphic reminds me of BFI (British Film Institute) releases and it does not appear on Amazon.uk
Found the listing and it smells of fish.
This is what I have:
Wow- I didn't think anything could top the vitriol spewed at the "Led Zeppelin: Song Remains The Same" video releases, but this Cream Farewell apparently takes the prize for "worst documentary of a vintage rock concert ever".
So of course now I need to get my hands on it. Somehow I've gone thru life without ever knowing this existed, despite owning umpteen Cream CDs, so the thread produced another unexpected little pearl after all. Thanks!
I'd be happy to take a shot at "restoring" my DVD version and making it available to those of you who already own the movie (no copyright infringement, I think). I can certainly reduce/eliminate the dirt. I'm not sure I can do much about the contrast without introducing weirdness. I'd have to take a hard listen to the audio to see if much can be done.
Most really good restorations require access to some of the original elements.
Anyway. I found that listing on Amazon.uk.
This is quite a clever one. Just one disk with both blu ray and dvd. A new form of 'flipper' ?
But seriously, when it comes do report back on the genuineness of it.
AFAIK, the audio was originally mono, though I've read rumors of soundboard recordings (makes sense it would have been recorded), but I've never come across it. The contrast and color are an issue, especially with all the 'psychedelic" effects.
I've posted a thread on another non-video forum asking if anyone has seen or can confirm the full uncut version was ever released, but lots of viewers with no responses so far.
It's so confusing and frustrating because there have been so many different releases.under different labels. According the description on the Youtube link I gave above: "Distributed by: MEDA - Media Home Entertainment | First pressing [Ultra rare]
This tape has been out of print, in its original form, since at least the early 80's, due in part to a series of lawsuits involving Media, VCI and other companies because of unpaid royalties."
Personally, I think tracking down what happened to the original tapes/film and finding out about the ownership of the distribution rights to it is a more fascinating story than what happened with Cleopatra!
Last edited by lingyi; 20th Sep 2019 at 16:52.
Not nearly as nervy as "All Star Video" - they dared sell literal 5th-gen bootlegs of old TV specials from Elvis, Streisand and Sinatra (rec'd at LP speed, yet). The same company also owned a small chain of elite video stores in Manhattan (sales only, no rentals). I worked there as a kid, at the main shop across the street from Carnegie Hall. Sinatra played there that summer of 1980, and one afternoon when I had a solo shift Ol' Blue Eyes goon squad came in and quietly, methodically took all the tapes off the shelf and walked out without a word. The owners were pretty spooked by that, but I thought it was hilarious. Being an Italian from Brooklyn myself, it made for a great party story (that, and my framed Keith Richards and Bianca Jagger Amex carbon slips, long since lost).
Last edited by orsetto; 20th Sep 2019 at 17:51.
So I have just watched the 80 min cut from my dvd.
Of course there is low light video noise present. To my eyes that is to be expected for this vintage as the broadcast/film was breaking new ground. And it is somewhat compounded by the special effects which so evidently date this. Maybe they were not present when the actual film was shown but digital transfer is not a very tolerant medium.
Having been alerted to it, I closely watched the Ginger Baker solo and, yes, his attire goes from green with decorations to a somewhat solid light blue. Which rather made me think. No editor worth his salt would leave that 'en situ'. Is it possible that this brief foray is actually a 'bug' from within the recording video unit ?. After all there appears to be no change in the tempo of the sound and, for what it's worth to my ear (singular since I in fact did lose the use of one after an 'essential' operation two years ago) , sync is maintained.
I will pass on Clapton's guitars since I know fook all about these.
^^ Then why the feck did you not buy the VHS ? That, itself, could have given you more opportunity to get it transferred.
But no. You make it up as you go along since it suits your narrow-minded version of events.
You are done with this discussion ? Well I have news for you. So has everyone else. Even if you located another version or even obtained a working copy from the UK do not expect any further assistance. You have burnt all the bridges that were set to help. You even insulted the one person who could possibly have helped you state-side.
We all have better things to do than suffer your mindless rants.
Have a nice day !!
I just figured it out! He's really Ricky Gervais, and he's been "harvin a larf".
Now just for spite, I'm gonna patiently stalk that original USA "192 min" MV tape until I find one, then post back here that I flatly refuse to share it with anyone.
Just did a search for "Magnetic Video Corporation" and came across this page: https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Creator/MagneticVideo and these are some relevant excerpts from it:
"In the United States alone, over 400 different releases were produced by Magnetic Video Corporation over the course of 5 years from 1977 to 1982. Below is a guide to the "series" of films, followed by the films themselves. Unless otherwise specified, all films were strictly USA productions.
1000 series = 20th Century-Fox"
"CL-1008 Cleopatra (1963)
Note: Magenta marquee
Note: USA/UK/Switzerland production.
Note: General theatrical release version
Note: Two-tape release
Note: Filmed in Todd-AO.
Note: Split between two 120-minute tapes.
Note: A different stock number is used for the longer four-hour version, which was first released by 20th Century-Fox Video in mid-1982.
Part of Fox's "Century 6" syndication package, released in September 1972"
Here's the catalog info for the 1982 release by CBS/Fox Video [20th Century Fox Video]: https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Creator/TheCBSFOXCompany
20th Century-Fox Video
CL-1112 The Making of Star Wars (1977) + SP/FX: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
Note: A double release, containing behind-the-scenes documentaries for the first two Star Wars films.
CL-1126 On the Right Track (1981)
CL-1143 Cleopatra (1963)
Note: Uncut version.
CL-1158 99 and 44/100% Dead (1974)"
Edit: This is a double edged sword. It shows that the 4 hour version was released in 1982 and shares the same catalog number with the 1988 release
[Attachment 50235 - Click to enlarge],
but it if the notation "Uncut version" is accepted, so must the "theatrical version" notation be accepted on the earlier release.
Last edited by lingyi; 20th Sep 2019 at 21:28. Reason: Additional info
I don't know whether I want to join the hunt, but I did search YouTube for "Magnetic Video" and ended up with what must be considered some of the strangest results I have ever obtained. There are several dozen clips that contain nothing more than variations on the logo, or just the opening non-theatrical portion of the movie:
This second one is a ten minute loop (yes ten minutes!) of nothing but the logo, repeated hundreds of times. What is even more amazing is that this totally pointless video has 105 likes and only one dislike.
What the heck am I missing?
Then there are a whole bunch of videos where people pull out their Magnetic Video tape boxes, one-by-one, and wave them in front of the camera. These videos go on forever! Here is one that it fifty-four minutes:
There is something very strange about this company and their products. It seems it attracts people who are on the same frequency ("what's the frequency, Kenneth?") as the OP.