Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Reviews > Concert > Pop > Rock > Standards > Musicals > WWII > Cold War > Don McLean: Starry Starry Night (1999/MVD DVD)/The Golden Age Of Musicals (1937 - 1957/Film Chest DVD Set)/Love Me Or Leave Me (1955/MGM/Warner Archive Blu-ray)/Motley Crue: The End - Live In Los Ange

Don McLean: Starry Starry Night (1999/MVD DVD)/The Golden Age Of Musicals (1937 - 1957/Film Chest DVD Set)/Love Me Or Leave Me (1955/MGM/Warner Archive Blu-ray)/Motley Crue: The End - Live In Los Angeles (2015/Blu-ray + CD Set)/Rolling Stones: Havana Moon (Live In Cuba 2016/Blu-ray + 2 CD Set/both Eagle Vision)/The Student Prince (1954/MGM/Warner Archive DVD)

Picture: C+/C/B/B-/B-/C+ Sound: C+/C/B/B & B-/B & B-/C+ Extras: C/D/C+/C+/C+/C- Main Programs: C+/C+/C+/B-/B-/C+

PLEASE NOTE: The Love Me Or Leave Me Blu-ray and Student Prince DVD are now only available from Warner Bros. through their Warner Archive series and can be ordered from the link below.

Here's a diverse new set of music titles, from Pop to Rock, Standards to Musicals and concerts...

Don McLean: Starry Starry Night (1999) is a show from the famed singer/songwriter of the hit that serves as the title of this release (about painted Vincent van Gogh) and his big #1 hit ''American Pie'' remaining one of the longest #1 hits or hits of any kind in music history. This short show (from the Paramount in Austin, Texas) gets padded with interview segments that are fine, but break up the pace of the music.

Songs include Castles in the Air, Jerusalem, Crossroads, You Gave Me a Mountain, Crying, Singin' the Blues, Vincent (Starry, Starry Night), Angry Words, Raining in My Heart (with Nanci Griffith), And I Love You So (with Nanci Griffith), Fashion Victim, If We Try, It Was a Very Good Year, You're My Little Darlin' and American Pie.

Extras include home film footage of the 1975 Hyde Park Concert, plus music clips of performances from shows in the 1970s (from film, but could use HD transfers), 1980s and 1990s (from analog videotape) worth your time. All add up to the history and evolution of the artist, so with the extras, this is worth a look.

The Golden Age Of Musicals (1937 - 1957) is a new DVD set from Film Chest DVD featuring a mixed bag of mixed-quality copies of 17 feature film musicals, some of which have been issued several times being in the public domain and a few that have even debuted on Blu-ray. Not an awful 'crash course' set to grab, from WWII propaganda to comedy, the films include...

All American Co-Ed with Frances Langford

At War With The Army with Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis

Career Girl with Frances Langford

The Duke In Tops with Ralph Cooper

The Fabulous Dorseys with Tommy & Jimmy Dorsey and Janet Blair

The Inspector General with Danny Kaye

People Are Funny with Jack Haley

Pied Piper Of Hamelin with Van Johnson

Pot O' Gold with Jimmy Stewart & Paulette Goddard

Private Buckaroo with Harry James & The Andrew Sisters

Road To Bali with Bing Crosby & Bob Hope

Royal Wedding with Fred Astaire & Jane Powell

Second Chorus with Fred Astaire & Paulette Goddard

Something To Sing About with James Cagney

Stage Door Canteen with an all-star cast

This Is The Army by Irving Berlin with an all-star cast

Till The Clouds Roll By with Judy Garland

Its not a bad group of films, including some hits, but a few are shorter than you may expect. A paper pullout on the films in the DVD case is the only extra.

Charles Vidor's Love Me Or Leave Me (1955) is a big budget backstage musical biopic of singer Ruth Etting, slightly Hollywoodized in the person of Doris Day, getting her big break because a tough gangster (James Cagney playing to type) gets obsessed with her and goes all out to make her a star. Too bad he is controlling and abusive with her and everyone else, crass and of course, even dangerous. Much of this is predictable (and maybe too safe) but MGM wanted a hit for the cash they were spending, but it lands up on the screen.

The problem is that you get a so-so script interrupted (eventually, thankfully) by music numbers that make the rest of the film seem dated, despite us getting a mid-1950s film set in the 1920s. Warner Archive has decided to issue this exclusively in an upgraded Blu-ray and the results pay off... if you're here for the music. This also runs a bit long, but it is a great showcase for Day and definitely worth a look.

Extras include an Original Theatrical Trailer and three vintage short films with the real life Ruth Etting: A Modern Cinderella, Roseland and A Salute To The Theatres, which shows how amazing she was and why a guy might go nuts for her.

Motley Crue: The End - Live In Los Angeles (2015) has the original band members back together for the last time as if they never broke up (anything like that was brief enough), going out on top in excellent form, proving they were never going to land up a played-out legacy band. The musicianship has actually improved if anything and lead singer Vince Neal still has his voice in tact for sure. I was surprised at how they sounded as good as they ever did, making this an impressive show indeed.

Songs include 1) Girls, Girls, Girls, 2) Wild Side, 3) Primal Scream, 4) Same Ol' Situation (S.O.S), 5) Don't Go Away Mad (Just Go Away), 6) Rock N Roll Part II + Smokin' In The Boys’ Room, 7) Looks That Kill, 8) Mutherf***** Of The Year, 9) In The Beginning + Shout At The Devil, 10) Louder Than Hell, 11) Drum Solo, 12) Guitar Solo, 13) Saints Of Los Angeles, 14) Live Wire, 15) T.N.T (Terror 'N Tinseltown) + Dr. Feelgood, 16) Kickstart My Heart and 17) Home Sweet Home.

Easy to forget how much fun these guys could be. This is definitely worthy of a singular previous Crue show on Blu-ray we covered years ago at this link...


However, they give it their all here knowing they wanted to go out on top. They succeeded.

Rolling Stones: Havana Moon is a new Blu-ray + 2 CD set of the free concert (!) the band performed Live in Cuba earlier in 2016. With so many fans trapped their since they formed (!!!), it is a grand, excellent gesture and they deliver a solid show that includes classics like 1) Jumpin' Jack Flash, 2) It's Only Rock 'N' Roll (But I Like It), 3) Out of Control, 4) Angie, 5) Paint It Black, 6) Honky Tonk Woman, 7) You Got the Silver, 8) Midnight Rambler, 9) Gimme Shelter. 10) Sympathy For The Devil, 11) Brown Sugar, 12) You Can't Always Get What You Want and 13) (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction. With a new studio album actually on the way, the band can still pull it off, even with Mick Jagger's voice in good shape. The results are not their best show, but its a smart, strong, honest one and I'm glad it was recorded... legally.

Extras for both Eagle foldout DigiPak case packagings include illustrated booklets for each concert on Eagle's usual high quality slick paper, the bonus CDs if you want to include them, then the Crue add Interviews and amusing looks at Nikki's Flamethrower Bass and Tommy's Drum Rig. The Stones add five bonus live music performances worth having here including Tumbling Dice, All Down The Line, Before They Make Me Run, Miss You and Start Me Up.

We conclude with Richard Thorpe's The Student Prince (1954) with the title role split between two men: up and coming Edmund Purdom (who did not get to be a big star despite several key roles in MGM films and leads like this) acting and no less than Mario Lanza singing for him, a royal who does not think he is above 'commoners' with Ann Blyth as the female lead a decent supporting cast including John Eriksen, Louis Calhern, Edmund Gwenn, Evelyn Varden and Richard Anderson.

Again, the script is uneven, but I like the cast and the money is on the screen. However, despite the great singing all the way to legend Lanza, the songs are not very memorable. Doing so-so business for MGM, who worked to make this a big screen event film, Warner Archive has issued it on DVD. The results are more hit than miss, but I love the ambition of the production and it is worth a good look, flaws and all.

An Original Theatrical Trailer is unfortunately the only extra.

The 1.33 X 1 on Night is from old analog NTSC analog videotape and has flaws including softness, some video noise, video banding, cross color and staircasing. But that's still better than the various, usually inaccurate aspect ratios all over the Musicals set. Some might not mind, but in an age of 4K Ultra HD and so many restored Musicals on video, it is hard to watch. The sound is the same story, with all DVDs offering lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 sound, barely stereo on Night and monophonic with background noise, some pops and clicks on the Musicals set.

Though it is nearly 60 years old as we post, the 1080p 2.55 X 1 digital High Definition image on Leave is the best performer here, shot on Eastman Kodak color negative 35mm film stocks with older CinemaScope lenses (and their distortion tendencies). Note it is the older, wider scope frame, so it is wide, but this has been impressively restored and the materials are in great shape.

Both the Motley Crue and Rolling Stones are surprisingly presented in 1080i 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image transfers and not 1080p. Guess venues and producers are waiting to upgrade to 4K Ultra HD cameras, so these look good if not as consistent as they could or should, though the 4K Blu-ray for Michael Scheinker (a first in the format and all concert releases in the U.S. market) we also reviewed had its share of flaws, so some new thinking in shooting concerts in HD (versus film) needs to be thought out. Otherwise, these are about as good as any of the dozens of 1080i releases we've seen over the years.

That leaves the anamorphically enhanced 2.55 X 1 image image on Student, another MGM CinemaScope musical, but this one shot on Ansco Color 35mm negative film. Like Leave, MGM was doing their own lab color to avoid paying for dye-transfer, three-strip Technicolor prints of the film. Though this one can use some work, I like the look and use of color. MGM used Ansco (part of GAF at the time' the film division folded in 1977) on about a dozen or so films before passing on the stock's use, but each film shot in it yielded different results than Eastman/Kodak or any other stocks of the time (DuPont, Agfa, soon Fuji) would have, resulting in interesting, surprising results worth your time. Sad MGM didn't continue with them.

As for sound, having covered the other DVDs, Student offers lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo with some signs of traveling dialogue and sound effects, as the original sound master was 4-track magnetic stereo. Hopefully those tracks have survived so we can get a sound upgrade, but this is not bad for its age at all.

Leave also originally offered 4-track magnetic stereo on its original 35mm film prints, but Warner has come up with a very impressive DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless upgrade mix from those tracks and though some of the elements and dialogue show their age, the music is amazing. I will add that I have NEVER heard Doris Day sound this good singing in my life and this now is very strongly likely (especially with no 180-Gram audiophile vinyl or Super Audio CDs of her work out there) and easily the highest fidelity representation of her singing ever issued in any format!

Even if you are not a fan of her or her kind and type of music, this now stands as the top evidence that she really is one of the greatest female vocalists of all time. Singing a bunch of key standards here, this showcase has her giving it her all and you too will be stunned if you hear her singing on this disc on a properly-calibrated home theater system. Oddly, she reminded me of Whitney Houston just for that power/control/range combination.

So it is obvious that either Motley Crue or The Rolling Stones would be the sonic champs here and they are, but instead of a Dolby Atmos 11.1, DTS: X 11.1 or even 7.1 mix in either format, but Eagle and the bands have stuck with a now more traditional (imagine that) mixed and presented DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless codecs that sound really good. However, the Stones just edge out the Crue at times where they could have received a higher sonic rating for how impressive this one can get. Still, excellent and some of the best sonic representations of both bands ever. Their PCM 2.0 16/44.1 Stereo CD counterparts that are not as good, but not bad for the older format.

To order either the Love Me Or Leave Me Blu-ray and.or the Student Prince DVD, go to this link for them and many more great web-exclusive releases at:


- Nicholas Sheffo


 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com