Can anyone recommend me a video repair utility for Mac?

This is for a home movie mp4 file, about 1GB and a half hour long which won’t open on VLC or iTunes (or anything else). I’ve downloaded a couple of things that purport to be freeware and they look like they are going through the process, only to tell me that the file needs “re-indexing” and I need to purchase their $80 custom service, or “pro” version.

Any suggestions on how to fix this for under, say, $30 would be most welcome.

I know you said you’ve tried others, but just to be on the safe side, you tried Quicktime X player?

There is also the older Quicktime 7 player here.

Handbrake or MPEG Streampclip (both free) may be able to convert it into something playable.

I’d suggest that it’s not really an mp4 file (if it were a wmv file in the mp4 container, for example, iTunes wouldn’t know what to do with it), but if VLC won’t play it, then yes it probably is damaged.

Did it ever play correctly? Is it a video from an iPhone or another camera or what?

Thank you, zbuzz.

It was created on a camera (which was dropped) and it never played.

I tried Handbrake and Quicktime X, with no luck. I also just downloaded MPEG Streamclip, which told me the file was corrupted and asked if I wanted to open it anyway. When I clicked yes, I got a progress bar as if it was trying to convert the file and then it failed, giving me the error message “File open error: can’t find video or audio tracks.”

If it has never played correctly, then it is probably too damaged.

But it’s possible you need to install proprietary software from the camera maker to play it despite it being an mp4 file. This is more likely if it’s an older camera. Have other videos from this camera played on your Mac?

The only other advice I can think of is to see if it plays on the camera (if the camera still works after it was dropped). If it doesn’t even play on the camera, then you know it’s really toast.