Exhibition scholar and aspect-ratio authority Bob Furmanek has posted what appears to be the most fully researched and most definitive study of the aspect ratio changes implemented by the major studios in 1953, a.k.a. “The First Year of Widescreen Production.” The study will “hopefully help to dispel many of the myths associated with this era,” Furmanek writes. He’s done some very good work here and hats off, but it won’t dispel the HE aspect-ratio theology any time soon. Because Furmanek’s work will be used to justify 1.85 and 1.75 aspect ratios for 1950s films on Bluray and Hi-Def streaming, and that is just wrong. The Movie Godz will tell you it’s better to open things up and let the light and space into the frame. Boxy is better and beautiful. The 1.37 version of Sabrina on Vudu is much more captivating than the 1.75 Bluray version that recently popped. For the 167th time, nobody needs to give a shit any more about the fear of television that was motivating the major studios 60 years ago. That was then and this is now. Just throw the research out the window. We can remaster old films any way we want these days. Screening Shane at 1.66 was an abomination, but Furmanek simply reports that it was presented that way in all the big urban theatres without comment. Those who care about this stuff need to wean themselves off history. At the very least alternative versions of ’50s films (1.37 plus 1.66 or 1.75 or 1.85) need to be presented. Free your mind, free your souls, and reject the office-of-Orson Bean-in-Being John Malkovich cropping that Furmanek and his ilk are still pushing for. Remember the triple-aspect-ratio Criterion Bluray of On The Waterfront, and move forward.