DVD distributors re-issue classic titles so often, each time claiming that the film has been beautifully remastered and made to look much better than before…that after a while the pitches don’t register. The marketing of Warner Home Video’s brand-new The Wizard of Oz DVD packages (both a two-disc and three-disc set, out 10.25) on the WHV website promises the same-old “dazzlingly restored picture”…but this time (and I can feel the skepticism before even saying this) it really is exceptional and the best-looking-ever because of a process called “edge detection.” The WHV marketers are figuring there’s no point in trying to reach average-Joe DVD buyers with technical particulars, but this new Oz is in the same class as those relatively recent WHV DVD’s of Gone With the Wind, Meet Me in St. Louis and Singin’ in the Rain. A special software program (called “Ultra resolution” on the disc’s Amazon page) that re-registers and re-aligns Oz‘s three-strip Technicolor separations brings all kinds of new details and textures to the eye. It does more than restore Oz to its former glory, blah, blah…it presents a degree of radiant color and needle-sharp definition than was ever visible in the celluloid versions. Fred Kaplan wrote an excellent explanation piece about the edge detection process on Slate last February.