Anyone done side by side comparisons of the 2 new versions of Fulci's Zombie yet?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Anthony*B, Aug 11, 2004.

  1. Anthony*B

    Anthony*B Stunt Coordinator

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    I got 'em both but haven't had the time to sit down & compare yet...I probably don't have good enough equipment to do a fair comparison anyway [​IMG]..I did watch some of the extras on the Shriek Show disc, though...many many great interviews w/ surviving cast/crew members of this seminal piece or italo-hardcore horror...
     
  2. TomF

    TomF Stunt Coordinator

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    Here is a site/discussion thread that does a side-by-side with screen shots:

    horrordvds.com

    Looks like Shriek Show's may be the better of the two...
     
  3. Michael Elliott

    Michael Elliott Lead Actor

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    I've watched both and I personally think the SS disc looks better. I watched the BU version last week and thought the transfer was pretty bad. I didn't comment on it because I wanted the see the SS version first. The BU disc to me just seems way too bright and there are many digital artifacts throughout the film. Another problem on the BU disc is some very dirty scenes towards the end that are a lot cleaner on the SS version.

    I then took another look at the AB version and I actually prefer this to the BU disc. If the BU version has the "look" Fulci was going for then that would be one thing but considering how dark is other "gore" titles are, the SS seems correct.

    The BU disc also features some dialogue that's not mixed correctly so it plays out of order. I forgot the check the SS disc for this though.
     
  4. Pat Donoh

    Pat Donoh Auditioning

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    Same deal on both discs. That'll give them something to fix next time around. [​IMG]
     
  5. Anthony*B

    Anthony*B Stunt Coordinator

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    wow, a lot of opposing opinions already [​IMG]...i checked out part of the film on BU's disc last week & thought it looked terrific (albeit surprisingly bright as mentioned)...as noted before though, I don't have incredible equipment to review with (Samsung TXM3096 + Zenith DVB318), so YMMV...
    The strange thing that I've been noticing lately about my opinions of DVD transfers of previously ratty-looking horror films is that they look amazing, perhaps OO AMAZING [​IMG] know what I mean? these films scared & entertained me so much during the VHS halcyon days in the 80's & 90's, & it's almost shocking to see these titles so clearly & cleanly! it is agreat time to be a fan of rare & obscure horror, but sometimes the kid in me longs for those days of watching my ragged Wizard video copy of Zombie in my mom's living room on a little 19" color TV & having the s**t scared out of me [​IMG]
     
  6. Michael Elliott

    Michael Elliott Lead Actor

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    Nope. [​IMG]

    If you look at the screenshots at www.horrordvds.com it looks pretty simple to me. The blood alone looks a lot better on the SS version and to me, the BU version looks just like the "colorless" HALLOWEEN from Anchor Bay. The film looks way too light IMO. If this is how it was supposed to look then fine but to me it seems a bit faded or washed out. Another thing that caught my eye was the shot of the jeep when they are about to enter the house and find you know who. Another one I noticed is the look of the mud when the zombies are coming out of the ground towards the end. The look of wormface just doesn't look right to me on the BU disc.

    The BU disc is a "great" transfer but it just doesn't look "right" to me. Again, it could be right and my eyes just aren't used to seeing it this way.

    As for the digital artifacts, check out the scene where the four are leaving to start their little voyage. The blue background is crawling with artifacts. This is very clear to see anytime the camera is moving and there's blue water or the blue sky in the background. Later I'll give some times to go with these examples.

    At another site I reviewed several SS titles and I was always amazed at how much better they looked when viewing on a widescreen set. Often time, I'd give their transfers 3/5 when I viewed them on a 4x3 set but when I got my widescreen set I bumped the grade up to a 4.5/5 on some of them. There's always going to be a difference when you can view these anamorphic but I've never known/noticed such a jump in quality when it comes to SS.
     
  7. Will*B

    Will*B Supporting Actor

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    Personally, I think they both look incredible compared to the AB version. If you look at how much extra detail is revealed (particularly in dark scenes and shadows), it's obvious that there's no way the AB version is anything close to what Fulci and Salvati wanted. There are extra zombies even!

    Also, the new versions restore footage and have better framing revealing more at the left and right of the screen. Who could refuse that?!
     
  8. JeremySt

    JeremySt Screenwriter

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    I ordered the Media Blasters version. Is this the Shreik Show version? Hope I didnt order crap.
     
  9. Pat Donoh

    Pat Donoh Auditioning

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    OK, I follow you... and actually those are some of the same reasons why I prefer BU's presentation. [​IMG]

    As a matter of personal taste, I thought the blood in the SS version looked slightly too "Argento" -- too vivid -- and that dark scenes were too well exposed for a Fulci film in the beginning of his "dark" period.

    Still, I'm thrilled to finally have a decent DVD of this film. [​IMG]
     
  10. James D

    James D Second Unit

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    Jeremy-Media Blasters is SS. You ordered the right one.[​IMG]
     
  11. MarcoBiscotti

    MarcoBiscotti Producer

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    I must be blind, but I don't see any screen captions for the SS version posted via the above link...

    I can see the Blue Underground and Anchor Bay comparissons just fine, am I alone with this?


    If someone could point me in the direction of some decent screen grabs from the new SS release, it'd be much appreciated. I planned on ordering sometime this month but with questions arising regarding a/v quality in comparisson to the Blue Underground release, I'd love to take a look for myself...
     
  12. MarcoBiscotti

    MarcoBiscotti Producer

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    Btw, can anyone tell me whether the commentaries were ported over from AB's release or if they're newly recorded tracks and if so, with whom?

    Thanks!
     
  13. Pat Donoh

    Pat Donoh Auditioning

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    It's the same old McCulloch commentary.
     
  14. Kevin M

    Kevin M Producer

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    Well of course the SS pictures won't open up on the HorrorDVD's page for me (the AB & BU pics will however)....[​IMG]
    And since DVDBeaver's site is down I have no idea how the SS transfer compares...DAMMIT I hate when this happens!
     
  15. JeremySt

    JeremySt Screenwriter

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    I had the direct link saved... view it while you can. The screenshots are up on the SS version. DVDBeaver
     
  16. Anthony*B

    Anthony*B Stunt Coordinator

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    gack I just remembered, I paid 55$ on ebay for the AB version a while back (before they reissued it at sell-through prices...grrr) I'll be holding on to it, but it definitely stings hehe

    as I said before though, isn't it a great time to be alive for fans of uncut foreign horror (or cinema in general for that matter)?!? incredible! who would have thought just a few years ago, ordering bootlegs from shady dealers & watching nth generation dubs that one day we would be able to walk into a national chain store & pick up a near-perfectly framed, crisp copy of something like Zombie or Erotic Nights of the Living Dead or Emmannuelle in America? the mind reels! even more outrageous is being able to choose between 2 versions of Zombie, as one's taste/budget dictates!!!
    by the way, the SS version has very nice packaging (so does the BU version, but, it's no contest)- I think Media Blasters HAD to go the extra mile, because I feel this title is a "make us or break us" title for them-they are not a huge company, & i can only guess how expensive it was to license this title, one of the most saleable, sought after Eurocult films..congrats to John Sirabella, maybe he'll chime in here with some comments, as I know he frequents some of the online discussion rooms (dvdmaniacs & mobius in particular I hope they sell a ton of these (and BU too [​IMG] )
     
  17. Michael Elliott

    Michael Elliott Lead Actor

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    And still...there are hundreds of other titles to be discovered. I've always enjoyed SS's early titles even though a lot of people seem to hate the company. JUNGLE HOLOCAUST, BURIAL GROUND and the greatest Euro film, BEYOND THE DARKNESS are wonderful discs. SS's EROTIC NIGHTS OF THE LIVING DEAD actually looks too good if you've seen the porn scene on the bed where we see too much.

    As for ZOMBIE, I guess it depends on what your eyes like. I'm holding onto my AB disc for some reason and I'm certainly not upset over buying the BU and SS discs. I'll gladly upgrade in a couple years when BU releases their SE. Hopefully they'll do a cast commentary like AB is doing on DAWN OF THE DEAD.
     
  18. Anthony*B

    Anthony*B Stunt Coordinator

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    hehe...the dubbing during that scene is far more disturbing/humorous to me than anything shown visually [​IMG]
    and yes, I think Shriek Show is often unfairly maligned...Eurocult cinema fans are notorious perfectionists, so they tend to get a little cranky when anyone releases a less-than-perfect DVD
    Beyond the Darkness the greatest Euro film?!? heresy!!! hehe to each his own-I'd have to think a LONG time to come up w/ my favorite (though, on reputation alone, , it would probably be a fight between Cannibal Holocaust/Salo/Suspiria/Black Sunday/etc.)
    Also, those screen grabs at DVDBeaver are quite a revelation...seemw the AB disc has the best contrast, while the SS disc has the most "vibrant" colors (& perhaps the BU disc has the most naturalistic fleshtones, very interesting stuff
     
  19. Will*B

    Will*B Supporting Actor

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    I agree.

    Until release, most of us assumed that they would look exactly the same due to them using the same transfers. Whilst the transfer may be the same, something in the mastering process means they look totally different.

    As for me, I prefer the SS version. It's as far removed from the old AB version as possible, so that's good enough for me!
     
  20. Anthony*B

    Anthony*B Stunt Coordinator

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    hehe, yep, Zombie was one of the first DVD's I watched that made me say "wow, what a craptacular transfer", hehe...it was riddled w/ compression artifacts & had odd bluish "haloes" around the letterbox bars during dark scenes (especially notable during McCullough & Farrow sneaking onto the boat in the N.Y. Harbor)
     

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