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How is EXCALIBUR on HD DVD?

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Edwin-S, Feb 28, 2007.

  1. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Well-Known Member

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    What is the PQ and sound quality like? I have hemmed and hawed over picking up this title several times. I always end up putting it back on the shelf. The main reason being due to the cover art. Every time I pick the disc up, I take one look at the cover and think to myself, "if they couldn't even be bothered to do something about the crappy cover (same as the DVD) then what effort could they have possibly expended on the feature itself"? So tell me. Am I wrong? Is there a definite improvement in the PQ and SQ for the film or have they just done a half assed job?
     
  2. Chris Dugger

    Chris Dugger Well-Known Member

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    Well... To be honest...

    It is ranked better than the SD version..... but.... personally, I think it is among the poorest of all current HD-DVD's....

    I found it to look bland.... flat..... lifeless.....

    Dugger
     
  3. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. Damn! Looks like I'm going to have to leave it on the shelf. Maybe some time in the future the powers that be will finally do a release that does justice to this film. I saw this film a long time ago in the theatre and at that time I thought the cinematography looked great. For some reason the DVD doesn't seem to quite match with what I thought I saw in the theatre. Could be my memory though, since I saw this film during its initial theatrical run.

    Any other opinions? Either yea or nay?
     
  4. Dan M

    Dan M Well-Known Member

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    this title appears to have been filmed soft and has a sort of hazy look to it so dont expect to have a razor sharp image. However I still like the look of this movie and I think the HD DVD is a definite step up from the SD, but not leaps and bounds. Hope you dont mind some grain!

    Sound quality is 'ok' but very little surround activity and its a bit tinny sounding and dated

    Not to mention its also a pretty cool knight flick. If you are into that sort of thing then I think its worth owning indeed....

    I agree on the lame cover art
     
  5. Radioman970

    Radioman970 Well-Known Member

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    Awesome film. I'll probably never replace my standard with anything different.

    I agree. That coverart has always been an eyesore. There's a million things they could've done on the cover. An updating with some creativity could've sold a few more copies.
     
  6. Paul Arnette

    Paul Arnette Well-Known Member

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    I just watched my Excalibur HD DVD last night, and I would agree with this. In addition, I agree with the comments that this film was given a soft, dream-like look intentionally. Therefore, you're never going to get the same wow-factor from this movie that you would from Pixar film, for example.

    When I look at HD PQ, my main concern is does it provide more detail and retain the look of the film that the director intended. In this case, I think it does. This is also one of my favorite films, and easily a top 10 fantasy film for me. So, it was an easy decision to purchase sight-unseen. In my, perhaps limited, experience, I have yet to see one BD or HD DVD transfer that isn't enough of an improvement to upgrade if you really love the film enough. Of course, it is the later you must decide for yourself. But know I am rapidly becoming part of the camp so spoiled by the great PQ of BD and HD DVD that only the most exemplary SD transfers even seem to hold water any longer.
     
  7. Mark Davenport

    Mark Davenport Well-Known Member

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    I've seen about every version of this movie including the INHD cable version, it is one of my favorites, the HD-DVD version is the best looking by far. The way this movie was filmed and the condition of the master, this is the best this movie will ever look, short of someone re-mastering it to HD frame by frame to clean it up.

    If your a fan of this movie this is the version to get and for me was worth the upgrade to the SD-DVD version.
     
  8. Vincent_P

    Vincent_P Well-Known Member

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    But how is the FRAMING? I had read that the framing of the original DVD was an issue, that it was over-matted compared to the letterboxed LaserDisc. How does the framing of the HD-DVD/Blu-ray versions compare to the standard-def DVD and LaserDisc versions? Is the more generous LD framing restored or do the HD discs offer the same alleged overmatted image as the original DVD version?

    Vincent
     
  9. JonZ

    JonZ Well-Known Member

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    The film is intentionally "soft".

    IMHO its worth the upgrade.
     
  10. Vincent_P

    Vincent_P Well-Known Member

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    So anyway, about the FRAMING...?

    Vincent
     
  11. JonZ

    JonZ Well-Known Member

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    I BELIEVE the HD has the same "problem" as the SD.
     
  12. Jefferson Morris

    Jefferson Morris Well-Known Member

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    It's probably only worth the upgrade if you have a large enough display to take advantage of the (marginal) improvement in PQ over the SD version.

    Of course it's a great, beautiful film at virtually any resolution. Unrivaled among Arthurian adaptations (though I wouldn't mind seeing another director of substance tackle the tale today, with today's film technology).

    --Jefferson Morris
     
  13. Dave>h

    Dave>h Well-Known Member

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    Not sure that I agree that it is only a marginal improvement over the SD version. I found it to look significantly better. NO pixelization issues. There is a lot of smoke and fog in the film and that looked significantly better on the HD version, at least on my DLP display.

    I really like the idea of someone tackling the Arthurian legends again with today's technology. That would be great.

    Although didn't they do that with King Arthur, sort of? Although I guess that was more of a revision of the Arthurian legend based on "fact" rather than Mallory's fiction.

    Personally, I prefer the Mallory fiction.

    Dave
     
  14. Jefferson Morris

    Jefferson Morris Well-Known Member

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    You may well be right. I never did a real side-by-side comparison, I was just working from my memory of the SD version.

    While the difference may be more than marginal, everyone agrees it's certainly not the most eye-popping title in the HD-DVD catalogue from a transfer standpoint. I suspect a decent upscaled remastering on SD could look about as good as this disc on most people's setups.

    For reference, I was looking at this thing on a 110" screen (lovingly handcrafted from posterboard as a stop-gap until the Carada screen arrives Saturday) with Panny's new 1080p LCD projector, being fed via component from the XBox 360 add-on drive.

    -- Jefferson Morris
     
  15. Tino

    Tino Premium
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    Bottom line..it looks better than the SD. Definitely worth the upgrade.

    (and I think it looks A LOT better)
     
  16. Andrew Bunk

    Andrew Bunk Well-Known Member

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    I remember doing a comparison between my HDnet recording and the HD-DVD. The HD-DVD was marginally better. Worth $20 IMO.
     
  17. Garrett Lundy

    Garrett Lundy Well-Known Member

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    Don't forget Jerry Zucker's 1995 First Knight. Then again, maybe you do want to forget it.
     
  18. Jim_K

    Jim_K Well-Known Member

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    Just watched the HD-DVD last night and thought the PQ for the most part was great so I'm a bit suprised by some of the comments. Is it the soft filming technique that's putting some people off? AQ is still thin, always has been on video.

    Even did a quick side by side with my SD upconverted and the HD version is a huge improvement.

    Final HD-DVD Ratings: out of 5 hacked off limbs [​IMG]
    Film: 5
    PQ: 4
    AQ: 2
    Extras: 1
    Cover Art: 0 [​IMG]

    While this film deserves a full blown SE someday the HD is a worthy upgrade for me. [​IMG]
     
  19. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    I consider it an enormous improvement over the SD.


    Cees
     
  20. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Well-Known Member

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    as do I.

    very happy to have gotten this so early in the formats life. Like a lot of movies, I don't think there are any issues whatsoever with the transfer. What people seem to be objecting to (and blaming on the transfer) are creative choices as to how the film looks and was photographed. Big difference.
     

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