there are so much first time evers on this dvds that its too much to post them all
the stuff is so good that you do not even find a review which includes everyything cause its THAT much cool stuff!
here is also a nice one hope you enjoy reading it!
Last year the BTI-Crewannounced on their website that the waiting time was almost over and that Volume 2 of ?Behind The Image? was on the run. Being as impatient as I am, I couldn't wait for it to be released. But now I finally got the DVD in my hands and the only thing that bothers me is: What can I expect from this DVD?
The first volume of ?Behind The Image? offered us interviews with John Wilkinson, Kathy Westmoreland and Sandi Miller.As a bonus we got an awfull lot of 8mm-video-material, which was not only stunning in quality. The content was truly amazing, as we saw Elvis for the first time in his legendary ?fringe suit?, that he wore on November 14th 1970 in LA. We also saw the "I Got Lucky" suit for the first time, which was another sensation.
But that?s enough about Volume 1, let?s take a closer look on the follow-up and see if they were able to beat it .......
First of all: the Crew around Bud Glass and Greg Retkowski followed the course they took on ?Behind The Image Volume 1?. Which means, that they offer us a documentarywhere people who worked very close with Elvis Presley tell their story. The "interviews" are filled with background information, unseen pictures and 8mm clips. At the end of the DVD the 8mm films are presented as a whole, as bonusmaterial.
Don't expect to see a sort of ?Return To Splendour 2?, because this DVD is not a compilation of available 8mm material. It's far more than that, it's a true documentary.
On we go!
The first thing that strucks your eyes is the menu, which gives this DVD a very professional looking start. You can use the menu to jump to (almost) everything on the DVD. Some parts are "hidden" which means you will only see them when looking at the complete DVD.
The backgound music used on the menu is not the expected "Nokia-Ringingtone" midi-file.
It seems to be a full orchestra that's playing there.
The main part of the DVD starts with an unusual and more than impressive introduction.
You?ll see an animated Elvis, dancing and doing some karate moves to a digderidoo (one of the oldest instruments on earth). The shots we see are taken from the bonus 8mm material and are unseen to these eyes. Then suddenly the scenery changes and you travel around the world and you?ll see and hear different people who had a massive impact in the history of menkind ? like Albert Einstein, Martin Luther King, Adolf Hitler, Desmont Tutu and Elvis (offcourse).
The intro ends with the following narration: wherever you are,
wherever you go,
to the deepest jungles in the amazon,
to the farest corners of the earth,
one name has the same remarkable meaning .....
I?ve never seen an intro like this! It gives the viewer lots to think about and enough space for each and everyones personal interpretation. It's telling me that Elvis is a timeless phenomenon who had a big impact on the world as it is today.
Surely my opinion is subjective and it can differ from others, but when you?ll see the intro, you?ll know what I mean!
To start with it must be said that the interviews are not interviews in a sence that you'll hear a question and an answer. It's more presented as a sort of monologue, which makes every interview
to a documentary.
First in line is Cynthia Pepper, who played the character of ?Midge Riley? in "Kissin' Cousins" Elvis 25th film.
Before she starts to tell her story you?ll get to see some facts
and background information about ?Kissin? Cousins?.
Despite the opinion of several fans, facts prove it was a successful movie (#28 on Variety?s yearly top-grossing-films from 1964)
and a more successful soundtrack that reached #6, staying on
the charts for 30 weeks!
Suddenly I remembered the words of one of my professors at the university, where I studied history. I don?t remember his words exactly, but it was something like:
?You have to watch history, in it?s own time. Do not make the fault to judge history from what you know today or what you believe you know about it. Try to see it like you are a part of it and free your mind from what you know about itnow. If you don?t do that, your opinion will never be objecitve!?
This words came to my mind, while listening to and looking to the background information.
I never was a big fan of the movies from the mid-sixties and I always thought that most people must have thought the same way, when the movies opened at the cinemas.
Now I know that I certainly was wrong about ?Kissin? Cousins? and I will check on the other movies as well.
So probably we should change our minds about Presley?s movie career in some way.
Surely the movies didn?t have had any big messages, but the people liked it anyhow. If you have a look at the movies that came out in 1964, you'll see most of them are from the same genre. You should also not forget that Elvis' movies financed a lot of the big productions in the 60s -Period.
Back to Cynthia Pepper. She tells her story about working with Elvis in person and the mood in which the movie was made. The interview is accompanied by inserts from LP?s, movie posters, movie clips and other (rare) memorabilia.
At the end of the 17 minute lasting interview she ends with some quotes about Elvis?s passing and how she remembered the day, where she was and how she's got the news about Presley?s death.
My conclusion has to be that in this interview Peppers sayings are more interesting than informative (but quite entertaining), whereas the background information given, is both.
Put this all together and you have a kind of "Making of ..." documentary of "Kissin' Cousins".
After Cynthia Pepper it's time for Ed Hill to tell about his
time with Elvis. The interview lasts for almost 29 minutes. During this time he tells his story, a story we didn't hear before. Simply because he's a very rare interview partner.
He starts explaining about his beginnings in the show business as a singer of a gospel group.
At some point he acquainted with JD Sumner. He became a member of ?The stamps? when Sumner was looking for a new bass singer for his group. This part of the interview is filled with pictures of the younger Hill being a member of the
gospel group and also with pictures of JD Sumner and The Stamps. Ed Hill also mentions that Elvis' concerts were preceeded by an opening show and that The Stamps were part of it.
It was a big surprise that the producers also added some rare and unreleased pictures from The Stamps during an opening show. An even bigger shock was the inclusion of footage from an opening show!! As I?venever seen footage from The Stamps, this was to me the highlight of the DVD, so far.
Ed Hill further talks about his first contact with Elvis and mentions that is was in San Bernadino, which might be the concert on May 10th 1974.He also is talking about the mood at the rehearsals.
When asked what was Elvis best performance he tells us that he can?t do that, because Elvis had done so many outstanding performances that it would be impossible to date one specifically.
The last part of the interviews was done with Ed Enoch, which is also the longest of the three interviews and lasts for 45 minutes. He also is talking about how it was to work with Elvis on stage. Enoch explains, that he came ? just like Ed Hill ? from the gospel scenery, before he met Elvis for the first time in fall 1970. He is talking about the mood at the rehearsals with Elvis and more about the work on stage. He mentioned that he never met or worked with anybody else that was so much in control on stage just like Elvis. He claims that Elvis was and is without a doubt one of the greatest entertainers of all time. Enoch remembers how it was to work with Elvis as a musician, where his background singers never knew what would happen at the next moment, because ? in his opinion - Elvis only did what he liked to do on stage ? nothing more and nothing less than that.
All in all Ed Hill is talking about Elvis as a dear friend who never forgot where he came from. This part is packed with footage. You'll get to see the CBS announcement of Elvis? passing, an emotional explanation of JD Sumner saying that (in his opinion), ?there was no greater man next to Jesus than Elvis? andwe also seesomefootage that was formerly used in ?Behind The Image Vol.1?.
At the end of this interview Ed Hill tells us how he remembers August 17th 1977.
They were standing at the airport and waiting for the plane to get on a newtour, which in fact never came and never started.
The interview is accompanied by a bunch of mostly unreleased pictures. For example we see beautiful pictures from November 10th 1971 in Boston. What is there to say about this three interviews?
There is also a lot of 8-mm-footage that is put inbetween the interview. One of the highlights is footage from an airport in 1977. I?m not sure if it is from Indianapolis (but it likely is) because Elvis wears the black DAE-dress that you can see on the pictures where he gets his last goldenrecord.
The interview part of the DVD ends with a sort of summary where everybody of the above mentioned three people speak there ?closing words?.
Cynthia Pepper's part was not as revolving as the other two interviews, mainly because she only worked with Elvis once and never met him again after finishing the work on ?Kissin? Cousins?.
She seems to be a very nice person and for sure she had really fun working with Elvis, but it seems she never was that close to Elvis the way Ed Hill or Ed Enoch were.
The interviewswith Ed Hill and Ed Enoch are much more emotional. Both menstill seem to be very, very sad and claim they miss him dearly as a friend, even after more than 25 years since Elvis?s untimely passing. Both men sound very sincere and the fact they don't show up in so many other documentaries (to make some money) add to their credibility.
To conclude the interviewsection of this DVD it must be said that this part is all in all 90 minutes long. This seems to be very long on first sight, but the things that all three are talking about are interesting, amusing and informative. Futhermore some stories we took for granted are corrected by both men. (like the stories about the "Jungle Room" sessions)
If you don?t like this type of interviews you might skip them and enjoy the bonusmaterial.
The next part could well be the most interesting part for quite a few buyers of this DVD. Still it's qualified as bonus material only!! Let's take a close look at the 8-mm-footage of Elvis concerts.
Among the fans of concert footage, ?Return To Splendour? is considered the best available.
At the time of its released I was thrilled by the close-ups and the incredible quality.
Allthough it's not possible to compare these two releases, we'll have to change our minds after watching the footage on this DVD! I haven't seen all the collectors-footage available, but I?ve seen a lot of it. Never ever did I see anything like this or something that even came close to it !!
We are treated with footage from:
Houston, TX (November 12th 1971), Dallas, TX (November 13th 1971).San Bernadino, CA (May 10th 1974), Los Angeles, CA
(May 11th 1974) and Las Vegas, NV (September 1st 1974).
Before each part startswe're presented witha small documentary about the events and a pictureof the place Elvis played at, just like the Hofheinz Pavillion.
The longest part of footage is from Houston. It lasts something about 20 minutes, which is absolutely incredible! Until now we've only got bits and pieces of concerts, but now you get
footage that is unbelievable long. The camera-position is steady in a way you would expect from professional filmings! Elvis in total, showing some new moves and in full action. This footage is spectacular ? and nothing less.
The second part is from the concert next day.
The last part ? which has the shortest footage of all with only 2 minutes - shows Elvis in Las Vegas on one of his September ?74 concerts. He is wearing the ?Black Spanish Red Flower?-suit.
It lasts roundabout 15 minutes. The quality is a little less than the one from Houston, but nevertheless far, far above all the footage you?ve seen until now.
The third part is only five minutes long, and you?ll ?only? see Elvis leaving the stage ? one time in San Bernadino and two times in Los Angeles.
The quality is equal to the one from Dallas.
The picture quality is less than the former mentioned ones, but I?ve never seen any footage
from this suit, so it is highly recommended. The shortness of the footage is compensated by the extra information we get on this show.
I think that this proportion is quite impressive. You?ll get in-depth background information from people who worked very closely with Elvis and you?ll get also the most impressive footage that you can watch at this time!
Hopefully we can expect the same quality DVD on ?Behind The Image Volume 3?.
The added trailer of it seems to be very promising!! It is one of five trailers that conclude the DVD: trailers to the forth-coming book ?Born To Rock? (what an impressive trailer that is!!!),
the making of the book ?Behind The Image? and also trailers to the DVD?s ?Behind The Image Vol.1? and ?Behind The Image Vol.3?.
To conclude my review, this DVD is ? IMO- an absolutely first-class product.
You?ll get ca. 160 minutes of entertaining interviews, background information and unbelievable concert-footage for a more than reasonable price, when you compare it to prices for similar products.
This DVD is highly recommended!!
that keeps you cold....not me
and i can?t wait...to tell you the truth i count the days cause ad?71 will be released on oct.24 and please don?t ring my bell or call me cause i will watch this 3 days in a row