Released by an unknown label is the 2 DVD set “Elvis The Way It Really Was - The Complete Uncut Outtakes”, is this the set we were looking for?
The package is very well designed. It maintained the look and feel of the original “That’s The Way It Is – Special Edition” release. Two digi packs in a cardboard sleeve. The liner notes paint the picture and the track listing is complete, very important with this much material.
The DVD menu is o.k., but why take a Hawaii 1973 picture for a DVD release with 1970 material?!? And take “take” literary, because it was a wallpaper we created years ago. The DVDs themselves look a bit cheap; why not use the design from the covers?
In the first half of 2006 out-takes of “That’s The Way It Is” and “On Tour” surfaced and quickly found their way to fans, mainly through eBay. These multi DVD packages changed hands in numerous variations. The complete set would contain material from both movies on 12 DVDs. Now all the material from “That’s The Way It Is” has been compressed on 2 DVDs.
Having seen the twelve DVDs we were pleasantly surprised to see the quality of this release. Although compressed, it can stand the comparison with the uncompressed 10 DVDs of “That’s The Way It Is” material.
The material itself is almost too much to mention. If you know “That’s The Way It Is” by heart, and which fan doesn’t, you can consider this to be the extended version - and take extended literary because you’re in for over 10 hours of movie outtakes. You get Elvis rehearsing at the M.G.M. sound stage in Culver City, including all the footage shot to illustrate the musical footage, and of course Elvis rehearsing and performing in Las Vegas. We won't go into the details, you probably know all the material, here you get the complete footage from which they only used "clippings". Looking at this material we still wonder why the Special edition of “That’s The Way It Is” wasn’t released as a multi disc set.
As a bonus this release includes the overdubbed (soundboard audio) 8MM footage of Birmingham, Al. December 29th & Chicago, IL October 14, 1976. It also features 2 audience bonuses of the Jan 29th, 1971 Las Vegas and August 11th 1970 shows. Fun to watch and listen too, but it is no comparison to the great looking Elvis from six years earlier.
A lot of great material, in good quality (regarding the source) in an attractive package, what more could you wish for? (Yes we know: an official multi DVD set).