A Few Words About A few words about...™ Silverado -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Sep 20, 2009.

  1. BillyFeldman

    BillyFeldman Supporting Actor

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    I can only comment on the caps I saw for Silverado at dvdbeaver.com. He says the film has a greenish cast and I say no, it does not. His caps for this particular film in no way resemble the superb disc I just watched.
     
  2. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    I cannot agree. Stills are not objective, because they are subjectively chosen by whoever took the screen-cap, to merely elucidate his/her point. That's a totally legal practice, but it still doesn't make them objective.
    (A correctly made screen-cap can possibly be an objective representation of the one frame it was taken from, but the choice to have it represent a part of the movie in question is subjective. It's much like quoting a specific scientist/expert to "prove" one's point, when several scientists/experts have given mutually different or even contradictory opinions about the point under discussion.)
    In my experience, screen-caps are too often copied, reproduced, linked to or simply mentioned without the original accompanying text, and, worse, accompanied by a different text that's an incorrect (more generalized or even hyperbolic) version of the original point.
    In my opinion, screen-caps should never be used separately from the original text (to which they are secondary at best), which has to be judged in a critical way, of course. And they cannot serve to prove anything about the original moving picture.
    Cees
     
  3. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    I believe the point about frame grabs is that while they can lead toward discussion, and when properly produced serve as a point of reference toward actual examination of the disc itself, they are not evidential.
     
  4. Michel_Hafner

    Michel_Hafner Screenwriter

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    Correctly prepared stills watched correctly are 100% objective. How you interpret them is subjective. Yes, which stills you select is subjective, but the stills are not. Different issues.
    Yes, you need to watch the whole film to see how representative the stills are for the whole film. And if you do you will see how they fit in.
    I have not yet had a case where the stills suggested one thing and the film was something quite different. I had cases where the stills showed the worst parts and not all of the film looked like that. But they were accurate for the shots they came from. For the rest you need to rent/buy and watch the disc or listen to people who have seen the disc and you know they know what they are talking about (the latter I find much more difficult to find than properly done stills. :) )
     
  5. Michel_Hafner

    Michel_Hafner Screenwriter

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    What exactly do you mean with that? Not evidential in what way? Not evidential because the sample is too small? Not evidential because some motion aspects are not visible in single stills?
    Not evidential concerning what exactly? For example stills are very evidential for identifying strong sharpening artifacts or way overdone DNR, at least together with the knowledge how the original source was created.
     
  6. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    While there are a couple of people who post make a real effort to choose appropriate frames and comparisons, the majority that find their way to the web are not terribly telling for any number of reasons. Are there proper frames that can lead us in the proper direction? Certainly, but in a general sense I find too many variables coming into play.
     
  7. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    I would suggest *ALWAYS* read/consider whatever stills, opinions, etc. w/ due diligence and w/in proper context. That is often harder to do than we may care to admit though.
    RE: comments about the editorial uses of stills (to make some points w/ or w/out some potential agendas), yah, that can certainly happen. Happens all the time in the world of still photography. And yet, the masses generally assume what they see in a still photograph (or two) actually tells the whole/real truth rather than just some selective editorial presentation that the photojournalist (or news editor or artistic photographer) chooses for them to see. For the uninitiated, it's interesting to learn/discover that there is no such thing as the real "reality" when it comes to photographs (even though we have terms like photo-realistic, etc.) -- they are *all* just somebody else's view/vision of reality frozen in time, which may or may not *seemingly* be exaggerated to the Nth degree via whatever techniques. /img/vbsmilies/htf/smiley_wink.gif">
     
  8. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    Michel,
    And, for the reason I have given, they cannot be considered objective means to communicate what the Blu-ray really looks like, in my opinion.
    Obviously, I agree that "what the BD really looks like" and "the representation of one frame" are different issues.
    Cees
     
  9. Michel_Hafner

    Michel_Hafner Screenwriter

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    If you reject stills there is nothing left which is objective apart from getting the disc and watching it yourself. Reduces the usefulness of the net considerably in making informed choices. Rather sad, no?
    But we can listen to Robert Harris, or Bill Hunt, or any of the other reviewers on relevant web sites, you might say. Sure we can, and I'm not saying it's a bad idea. But their verdict is not objective either, if your skepticism is such that you suspect manipulation, errors and agendas everwhere when the opposite has not been scientifically proven. We are back to faith and belief in an area where I see little place for it. The discs can speak for themselves. Just let them and listen what they say, even if it's only a few words from a whole chapter. Better than silence or retellings of the same story by others.
    Stills are a powerful weapon. Feared by many, abused by some, not fully understood by many, and very interesting to analyse and draw conclusions from. Some people's jobs is nothing else but to deal with stills/frames, one by one, do this and that with them. When they are done we enjoy, for example, a new digital restoration. Yes, it's true, not all that is apparent in motion will stick out on stills. But boy, so is the opposite, things on stills you look at in amazement while in motion it's gone, or really hard to see. And then we have the things that are obvious on the stills and in motion. And these make them so valuable for communicating some aspects of transfers as stored on a BD. I'm glad I know where I can find properly done ones if I want to have a look for myself before I buy.
     
  10. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    Michel,
    Hear, hear!
    Cees
     
  11. Parker Clack

    Parker Clack Schizophrenic Man
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    Loved the film.
    Loved the film score.
    Loved the story.
    Loved the cinematography
    Loved the cast.

    I remember the first time I saw it at the theater and how much I looked forward to seeing it in my home one day.
    Thanks to the great care that Sony has done with this Blu-ray disc I can say that I finally have in my home what I remember seeing and hearing in the theater.

    Parker
     
  12. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    There are a great many people that have never experienced this film. Hopefully this thread will nudge them over the edge to try a western.
     
  13. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    IIRC, I just cheaply sold off my original version DVD (along w/ a sizeable batch of other titles, including Contact I think) in a stoop sale to some parents of a 20-yo soldier currently on her Iraq tour -- and that DVD (along w/ the others) is expected to make its way around their camp(s) (and who knows where else) over there probably to be seen for the first time by some/many of them for quality entertainment.
     
  14. Brian Borst

    Brian Borst Screenwriter

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    Interestingly, the Blu-ray format has done precisely that for me. I only had a couple of westerns on dvd, but in my small Blu-ray collection there already are a lot more. How The West Was Won looks extraordinary. I was finally able to fully appreciate the Wild Bunch for the first time on Blu (it never got to me before that). And of course other classics like The Searchers and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. They all look excellent, and I'm sure this one looks good too. I'll probably take Unforgiven as well, while I'm at it. I've never seen both movies, but I'm sure I'll love them.
     
  15. Felix Martinez

    Felix Martinez Screenwriter

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    Much to my regret, I rented the U.S. disc from Netflix a couple years ago and loved it, but never bought it. Shortly thereafter, I realized my mistake, but the disc had gone out of print, and any copies floating around were fetching for around $40.

    Fortunately, the U.K. disc is, I believe, the same content, transfer, etc. in different packaging. So I lost the book, but gained the film, and what a film it is. Oh, and the UK disc cost me about $10 or $11 after shipping and currency conversion.

    The reason I post this today is that I twisted my son's arm this afternoon to convince him to watch this with me. I didn't do much arm-twisting; he didn't need much convincing. I fired up the projector, cranked it, and let it rip.

    At various points, my 9 year-old son jumped off his chair and hopped in place in excitement. He's still humming Bruce Broughton's main theme.

    I'll remember this. Thank you, Mr. Kasdan and company.
     
  16. Richard--W

    Richard--W Banned

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    I love the celebratory spirit of Silverado. Westerns generally bring out the best in Americans, and Silverado brought out the best in Lawrence Kasdan. I wish he'd worked more often in the genre (it's not too late for him to make another). The previous decade ended with two classic westerns, Tom Horn with Steve McQueen and Walter Hill's masterpiece The Long Riders both released in 1980. Silverado was easily the most entertaining of about a dozen theatrical westerns released in the 1980s. It's odd how the best westerns of the decade remain either unreleased on DVD or only available in a horrid pan & scan version. If you like Silverado, I recommend these --
    1981 Cattle Annie and Little Britches
    1982 The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez
    1982 Barbarosa
    1986 The Red Headed Stranger
    -- if you can find them. The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez and Barbarosa are significant and major westerns for many reasons, but only the latter is available on DVD in the horrid pan & scan previously alluded to. It also has a vital scene that's been cut. After Silverado the genre seems to have migrated to cable television with British directors helming American scripts in pristine New Mexico landscapes. Here are three excellent westerns shot like feature films in widescreen that are easily obtainable on DVD:
    1987 The Quick and the Dead
    1988 The Tracker
    1989 Lonesome Dove -- also on blu-ray
    I'd reply further to your comments about the status of the genre but I don't want to derail the thread.
     
  17. Jon Hertzberg

    Jon Hertzberg Screenwriter

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    It wasn't generally well-loved, but Kasdan did do this...
     
  18. Jon Hertzberg

    Jon Hertzberg Screenwriter

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    This has been on my "to see" list for years. Never released on home video, at least in the U.S., as far as I know.
     
  19. Richard--W

    Richard--W Banned

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    oops double-post
     
  20. Richard--W

    Richard--W Banned

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    I should have worded that post better. I confined my remarks to westerns made in the 1980s. I'm aware of WYATT EARP (1994) and I, personally, love it. I should have said I wish Lawrence Kasdan had continued to make westerns more often because he is too good at it not to. The genre needs someone like Kasdan to keep cranking them out. I own the blu-ray and the Special Edition 2-DVD, the paperback novelization, the behind-the-scenes book written by the Kasdans (and signed by them), and the published screenplay. The books and the DVD are kept in my Tombstone / Cochise County / Earp bookcase #2 shelf no 5. The blu-ray is kept with the blu-rays. I also have posters:
    As an aside, did you know the town-set Kasdan built in New Mexico for SILVERADO also served as the main location for WYATT EARP ? Except he doubled the size of it. Several films including LONESOME DOVE got to use it before Warner Brothers paid the ranch owner to burn it down on camera for their WILD WEST WEST remake. Only two buildings were left standing.
     

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