Cinerama is back on Blu-ray

After seeing the final high-def videos – the Blu-ray Disc includes high-def versions in Cinerama and standard widescreen – Feltenstein watched the unrestored trailer. "It blew me away when I saw how horrible it used to look," he says.

The Cinerama version, to these eyes, provides additional dimension to the film, whether it be the many scenic vistas in the film – the Rockies, steamboats on a river, a buffalo stampede, a line of covered wagons across the Plains – or smaller settings, such as the burlesque theater where Debbie Reynolds performs or the behind the lines meeting of generals Sherman (John Wayne) and Grant (Harry Morgan). I found the smilebox-shaped video more enjoyable in the dark than in a moderately lit room. But some may find the concave reverse fish-eye effect unsettling. Never matter, the standard high-def version looks superb.

Warner preferred to "give consumers a choice" and let them see both versions, Feltenstein says. "If the creators of Cinerama were alive today, I think they would be pleased."

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