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[versions] Vintage Clint Eastwood films original audio preservation
Clint Eastwood vintage films are really all over the place when it comes to audio, with some of them forever destroyed by "modern" (ie 25 years old already) remixes with brand new sound effects.

So I thought similar to my Mad Max original remixes guide, it could be cool to gather all information in one place, and update as it goes.


First here's a list of Clint's films where the original mix is included. They are all from the same masters which go back to the DVD era. Recent releases are for most of them the source scan better compressed with some adjustments and some milliseconds delays that will be noted here as I review them:

- Hang 'Em High: 2.0 mono on original releases in addition to nice 5.1 remix (no new sounds). Shout! new disc actually adds a stereo mix (no mono) however you can remux the old tracks to the Shout! as it is in sync with the old version. The LD to get if you really want the original sound is MGM [ML101399] from 1991. It is open matte mono 2.0 and include the mono mix in digital. The stereo tracks from Shout! sounds really great and is my go to, but probably the LD mono surpasses the Blu-ray & DVD mono.

Universal era

- Googan's Bluff: 2.0 mono on all releases. Theres a New Shout! remaster out summer 2021. The difference between the old Universal disc and the Shout! is +1043ms. This was only released on LD with analog audio, in both in the USA MCA/Universal [40867] and Japan CIC [SF078-1513].

- Two Mules for Sister Sara: This is where it get weird. This title was never released on Laserdisc! For unknown reasons. Lucky for us, it's 2.0 mono on all releases worldwide. To mux foreign language tracks from the Universal Blu to the new release, you need to add a 1043ms delay. On a note, the new restored mono sounds different (better EQ) than the old, so keep them both.

- The Beguiled: 2.0 mono on all releases. Only one LD was released, lucky for us with the mono mix in both digital and analog, MCA/Universal [41235]. There is no delay between the old and the new Blu-ray editions.

- Play Misty For Me: 2.0 mono on all releases. There is one LD from 1991 that has the mono track in digital if you're a purist, MCA/Universal [12-024]. There are two other early LDs from the US and Japan but they are analog only. The delay between the old release and the Kino is 1s1ms = 1043ms.

- Breezy: 2.0 mono on all releases. This is another Clint film that never appeared on LD. I recommend the Kino Lorber 2020 release. The mono is DTS-HD with foreign dubs DTS on all releases. To adjust the foreign Blu-ray discs tracks to the Kino, you need a delay of +918ms.

- Joe Kidd: 2.0 mono on all releases. The go get is the Kino 2020 release which is the same master as the Universal, just sightly improved (VC1 vs AVC). To mux the Universal disc tracks to the Kino, you need a delay of 918ms. The LD version with digital track is the MCA/Universal [14004].

- High Plains Drifter: you can find the 2.0 mono on the DVD. The go to Blu-ray is the recent Oct. 2020 Kino edition which sports the best PQ. The stereo track on the new BR however is stereo but apparently with the original sound effects intact. So you need to remux either the DVD mono track, or the LD track, to have the original release mix. There was a LD version with digital track, MCA/Universal [14002]. Like other Clint movies from the Warner era, however, it looks like the mono version was just a folddown of a stereo mixed master. So the Kino stereo is either a fold down of the 5.1, or a straight stereo rip of the stems. There is a 917ms delay between old editions and the new Kino remaster.

- The Eiger Sanction: 2.0 mono on all releases. This is a weird one, because no release is acceptable. There is a recent November 2020 Kino Blu-ray with nice PQ using the same old scan from the source, but it as wonky colors, faces are salmon red in many shots. The old Blu-ray is over sharpened as it is an old DVD master, unwatchable. The NTSC DVD actually looks fine despite the lack of definition but it has some weird flickering on the top of the image. There were two LD releases in P&S analog. The Widescreen LD with the digital track in 2.0 from 1992 is MCA/Universal [41262]. There is a 42ms delay between the old editions and the new master.

United Artists era

- Thunderbolt & Lightfoot: 2.0 mono on all releases. There were 2 CED releases and 3 LD releases all in mono 1 channel, and the one with the digital track in widescreen from 1991 is MGM/UA [ML102232]. This film is Clint only film for United Artists (now MGM/Disney) due to the poor box office due to the poor release, Eastwood never made the second film he was contracted to do for them. As such, it somehow exists on it's own and is released all over the world by small labels. Prefered version is Kino (the most recent release), with Twilight Time having done an old Blu. Capelight in Germany, and Carlotta in France. To mux the french tracks to the Kino, you need a delay of 7049ms.

Paramount / MGM

- Escape From Alcatraz: The Blu-ray presents a remixed 5.1 english track. Other dubs are mono. However the DVD escaped this and had the original track, especially the first one in 4/3 widescreen which was a port of the LD.

Warner era

Universal, went cheap on Clint as they only scanned the films once over 25 years ago when DVD started, but they did not play with the soundtracks. Warner, which his Clint home, has however destroyed all his filmmaking legacy by remixing most of his films for DVD and Blu-ray and releasing most of them in the outdated VC1 encoding format. Only 5 films escaped the slaughter, the ones not considered commercial, which is completely crazy as they have better treatment than the classics! They are available either as Web-DL of low quality from Amazon, or Warner Archive recent releases:

- Bronco Billy: The film is 2.0 surround on DVD, + Warner Archive 2019 Blu-ray is mono. If you check out the old releases, there was a Warner Home Video CED in analog mono and a LD Warner Home Video [11104] from 1989 in reprocessed stereo. So it means the Blu-ray has the CED mix, while the DVD is probably the reprocessed Stereo remix from the stems from 1989.

- Honkytonk Man: 5.1 (remix) on DVD. There is no Blu-ray, other dub tracks are mono. The only LD was reprocessed stereo (it means the original mix was mono). It's Warner Home Video [11305]. There's an AMAZON WEB-DL IN 2.0.

- Bird: 5.1 (remix) on DVD, other dub tracks are Dolby Surround. AMAZON WEB-DL IN 2.0
- Pink Cadillac: 5.1 (remix) on DVD, other dub tracks are mono or stereo or surround. AMAZON WEB-DL IN 2.0
- White Hunter Black Heart: 5.1 (remix) on DVD, other dub tracks are surround. AMAZON WEB-DL IN 2.0

Now here are the ones that were destroyed by remixing with new foley sounds, changed gunshots sounds etc.:
Those two I'm not sure sounds were changed as they probably had 70mm releases in multi-channel, but they are nonetheless remixed:

1. Where Eagles Dare: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are surround or mono. The surround tracks are actually fold down of the 5.1 with the dialogues swapped ie not true original dub mixes. Only the spanish mono track 1.0 is a true original mix. There is Stereo mix on LD that one can find on the internal organ. A 131mn shorter version that ran in theaters during the film second run is missing in all formats. VC1 encode.

2. Kelly's Heroes: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are surround or mono. Stereo mix on LD. I'm very curious to hear the LD, as out of all the remixes of Clint's Warner films, this one actually is very impressive and improve the movie immersion, compared to the anemic foreign mono dubs mixes included. VC1 encode.

Malpaso productions, mono era (except Firefox).
This is the cheap Malpaso phase, before Clint establishes himself as an icon, so all films are mono well into the 80's, with the exception of Firefox for obvious reasons. However, in the LD / VHS era, these films begins to be remixed from the stems in stereo, as the stems were stereo before being collapsed to mono for 35mm release. Then in the DVD era, the soundtracks are all redone in 5.1 with changed foley.

3. Dirty Harry: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono. Original mix was mono, folded down from stereo stems. Transfers from the stems were made in stereo in 1990 and 1992. The first 1990 release was Pan & Scan and the 1992 release widescreen, but I can't tell if the stereo mix differs until I buy them both. Also the 1994 version from the LD box set may, or may not be another different from the widescreen stereo remaster. Many sounds are changed on this remix, like the other ones from the series. VC1 encode on Blu-ray, looking antique.

Mono mix:
There are two sources, with the JP LD apparently being digital.
- Warner Home Video [1019 LV] 1983 USA LD Analog one channel. Pan & Scan (Green sleeve)
- Warner Home Video [NJEL-01019] 1989 JP LD Digital two channels Pan & Scan (Brown sleeve).

Stereo mix:
I assume there are two different Stereo versions, the first being the Pan & Scan one, then a redo for the widescreen version, but maybe the audio is the same. I also think the single LD widescreen and the box set version are the same mix as they are only 2 years apart.
- Warner Home Video [1019] 1990 USA LD Pan & Scan listed on lddb as analog  but it's an error, the sleeve says digital.
- Warner Home Video [12483] 1992 USA LD digital Widescreen
- Warner Home Video The Dirty Harry Collection [13613] 1994 LD digital Widescreen

Dolby Surround Mix:
- Warner Home Video [16746] 1999 LD  has both the 5.1 remix in AC3 and a Dolby Surround version of the same. probably useless now, but a curiosity.

4. Magnum Force: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono. Original mix was mono, folded down from stereo stems. Transfers from the stems were made in stereo in 1989 and 1994, however the 1994 version has one missing cue. Nothing we can't fix using the 1989 to patch it up. VC1 encode.

Mono mix:
- Warner Home Video [1039 LV] US LD Analog Pan & Scan
- Warner Home Video [NJEL-01039] 1989 JP LD Analog Pan & Scan (blue sleeve)

Stereo mix:
- Warner Home Video [1039 A/B] 1989 US LD Digital Pan & Scan
- Warner Home Video The Dirty Harry Collection [13613] 1994 LD digital Widescreen (2nd stereo mix, one missing cue).

5. The Enforcer: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono. 3 other mixes exists, mono, Stereo 87 and Stereo 94. VC1 encode.
6. The Outlaw Josey Wales: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono. Others mixes : Mono JP LD, Stereo 1987, Stereo 1995. 5.1 remix 1999 with DS.
7. The Gauntlet: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono. 3 other mixes exists, Mono JP LD, Stereo 1989 and Dolby Surround 1995. VC1 encode.
8. Every Which Way But Loose: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono. 2 other mixes exists, Mono JP LD, and Stereo 1989. VC1 encode.
9. Any Which Way You Can: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono. The LDs are mono. No Stereo remix ever made.
11. Firefox: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are stereo. Stereo LD + 1995 Dolby Surround (remix from the stems)
12. Sudden Impact: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono. 2 mixes exists mono and Stereo 94. VC1 encode.
13. Tightrope: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono except Port. & Spa. in surround (derived). LD was mono. This was the last Malpaso production released in mono.

Malpaso productions, Stereo era.
In the VHS & LD explosion era, Malpaso transitions it's productions to Stereo and Dolby Surround.

14. City Heat: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono except Spanish stereo. (derived?) LD is Stereo. I'm pretty sure most foreign dubs were stereo.
15. Pale Rider: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono except Spanish surround. (derived?) Dolby Surround LDs 86 & 95. I'm pretty sure most foreign dubs were stereo. VC1 encode.
16. Heartbreak Ridge: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono or stereo. LD is Stereo. VC1 encode.
17. The Dead Pool: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are mono or surround depending the release. 2 french mixes m+s. LD is Dolby Surround. VC1 encode.
18. The Rookie: the 5.1 is from 70mm release, other dub tracks are surround. They have similar foley so this one is good. VC1 encode.
18. Unforgiven: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are surround. LD is Dolby Surround.
19. A Perfect World: 5.1 (remix) other dub tracks are surround. LD is Dolby Surround
20. In the Line Of Fire: 5.1 (remix), LD is Dolby Surround. Anemic surround track on the UHD.

Malpaso productions, 5.1 era.
In the mid-nineties, Clint transitions to 5.1 for all his productions, probably after he gets a home-cinema THX set-up installed and discover the marvels of stereo in the surround channels at home. The following productions were mixed and released in both 5.1 and Dolby Surround.

21. The Bridges of Madison County was released in 5.1. LD has both 5.1 & DS. Need to check if the sounds were changed for DVD.
22. Absolute Power was released in 5.1. LD has both 5.1 & DS. This was 1997 so probably never remixed. VC1 encode.
23. Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil was released in 5.1. LD has both 5.1 & DS. This was 1997 so probably never remixed. This only exist as a Warner Archives Blu-ray release and on DVD.
24. True Crime was released in 5.1. LD has both 5.1 & DS. Last Clint film released on LD.

That make about 20 of his films where the original english mixes are gone from home-video.
Thanks given by: PDB , mitkrod
I think the amazon 1080ps of the dirty harolds and ape movies might have the original audio tho i haven't been able to get ahold of them.

Pink Cadillac amzn is dd plus 2.0 but sounds better than the laserdisc

The rookie had a 70mm release and laserdisc is pretty much identical tho the ld sounds slightly better
Thanks given by: Stamper
Thanks, I fixed The Rookie entry. You're right, I forgot I saw this in 70mm back in 1990. I remember because I used to go to a 70mm theater which was my favorite cinema, and see every film on release week there.
Thanks given by:
I've got UNFORGIVEN (both US and JPN), THE ROOKIE, and PINK CADILLAC on LD. I believe I had the second "Any Which Way" film as well but I'm not certain.

Although IMDB claims that UNFORGIVEN had a Dolby Digital mix on original release, I couldn't find any mention of it in newspaper listings at the time. Although it was released after BATMAN RETURNS (and both were WB titles), if it didn't screen in Dolby Digital in New York around awards season, I don't think it had a 5.1 theatrical track.

I'd be up for helping with this project in the next month or so. I have the ability to do high-quality analog captures for some of the 80s LDs and can do bit-perfect PCM. Super backlogged at the moment but definitely up for helping capture anything (only accepting any sort of disc payment after everything is captured and sent to you).
Thanks given by:
Firefox is also 70mm tho i dunno if its the same mix on the bluray

Bird and white hunter has the original 2.0 on the amzn version

The gauntlet had a 4 track stereo mix so the 5. 1 is probably more accurate than the ld

Not on the list but the original mgm dvd of Thunderbolt and lightfoot has better details than the kino bluray.

Also unforgiven ld audio has voice narration in the start of the movie

I did fix the syncs on kch's dirty harold movies but i havent watched them
Thanks given by:
Thanks, will update the list. Anyone who get sent a LD, can keep it as a reward for capturing it, no need to send it back Smile

In The Gauntlet, all the gunshots sounds are new, so it's definetly not the 4.0 mix. LD versions are stereo and Dolby Surround (probably the same mix on both LDs) for the P&S and Widescreen releases. I'm not aware of any french LD so can't verify.

I think those films from around 1977 on probably had both mono and stereo mixes. Sudden Impact however is mono on the Japanese Laserdisc and the other US LDs. Also Tightrope. Heartbreak Ridge is Stereo on LD though. Maybe it depended on the films but Warner usually had a very common process for all films of the era.

The Sudden Impact Spanish stereo dub sounds unlike the 5.1 remix, so it must means there was a stereo release for the english track too.
Thanks given by:
WED and KH were both released large format-the former even had European roadshow versions. Eagles has a really impressive mix for the time however KH has a really pitiful one with little to no surround usage or stereo separation at all.

Unforgiven was released as Dolby Stereo SR in 1992 so the 5.1 is an upmix. I do think the 2.0 on the LD sounds nicer because as usual they probably filtered or EQ'd it somewhere in the upmixing process.
Damn Fool Idealistic Crusader
Thanks given by: Stamper
I think Unforgiven also had a six track mag mix for limited 70mm runs. It's believed to be the basis for the 5.1 tracks (with additional volume and EQ adjustements) on the DVD/BD/UHDs.
Thanks given by: Stamper , captainsolo
I think some of the Unforgiven DVDs have the 2.0 mix as an option (assuming it's not a dowmix), I'm going to fetch for one of those on used discs sites.

On another note, this made me realize at some point in the 80's Eastwood switched from anamorphic scope movies to spherical 1.85:1.

He usually stuck before to anamorphic lensed films, except more risky films like HonkyTonk Man. However once Pale Rider kinda fizzle out (it wasn't a huge success), there is this long stretch of 1.85:1 only films, except for The Rookie and Unforgiven.

It seems to me that this might have been a cost saving figure. Or, this must have been due to the explosion of home-video and the Pan & Scan thing. Just like Leone, tired of seeing his movie cut in half by Pan & Scan, decided to shoot Once Upon A Time In America in spherical 1.85:1.

That must be why the last Dirty Harry film, The Dead Pool, is 1.85:1 instead of scope like the other four. They did this to accomodate home video Pan & Scan.
Thanks given by:
(2021-05-19, 12:19 AM)captainsolo Wrote: Unforgiven was released as Dolby Stereo SR in 1992 so the 5.1 is an upmix. I do think the 2.0 on the LD sounds nicer because as usual they probably filtered or EQ'd it somewhere in the upmixing process.
Didn't it have Ac3 trailers?
Thanks given by:

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