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The Terminator: SE 5.1 Audio Track -- Thumbs Down!

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Greg_Y, Sep 23, 2001.

  1. Greg_Y

    Greg_Y Screenwriter

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    After picking up the new SE of The Terminator today, I was eager to see and hear what exactly MGM did to give this film the treatment it deserves. I wasn't ready for a completely different soundtrack.
    The gunshots in the Dolby Digital 5.1 mix are, from what I could hear, brand new. They don't sound anything like the old gunshots. When Arnold kills the first Sarah, instead of LOUD gunshots, we get more a silenced/muffled shot sound. I don't even know how to describe it, except to say that it's not the original. I scanned back, put on the mono soundtrack (only changeable through the menus [​IMG] ) and listened again. There were the old gunshots. Loud and direct.
    Same with the shotguns and other weapons. Instead of one big BOOM! per shot, as I can always remember hearing and is evident in the mono soundtrack, it sounds like they tried to give each different gun a more distinctive sound, plus put in sounds of the bullets hitting their targets (think a more T2-like sound.)
    The new soundtrack also has alot more directionality than is even needed, I think. As DVDFile put it: "the new soundtrack often sounds very gimmicky." When the station wagon crushes the toy truck, for example, the sound glides from the center channel into the left, as the truck quickly gets smooshed out of the screen. Not really necessary.
    And since they completely reworked the soundtrack, why not remove alot of the scratchiness? I suppose the only thing I enjoyed about the new mix is the way Fiedel's score is presented.
    However, that doesn't mean I don't like this disc. Before you say "If you don't like the 5.1 mix, listen to the mono!" ... don't worry ... I will. It's just sad that they wasted time and space creating this new mix for the "all my speakers" crowd. Also the video quality is quite good. There is some grain, but blacks are, for the most part, spot on, which is important for a film that takes place mostly at night. When you pop this one in for the first time, you may want to give serious consideration to the soundtrack you want to listen to. I know the next time I watch it, I will be fully enjoying the mono track.
    Equipment List:
    Toshiba 40H80
    Denon AVR-2700
    Pioneer DV-434
    Mirage Speakers

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    DVDs | CDs
    "[T]he greatest films teach us to appreciate them, while lesser films simply cater to our desire for immediate gratification. Great films make audiences better; bad films make audiences worse." --- Roger Ebert
     
  2. Scott_MacD

    Scott_MacD Supporting Actor

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    I don't fully agree with what you are saying here, although I was also disappointed with the rerecording of the sound effects. They are crisp, clean and for a lack of a better word "soulless". I'm sure I'll be shot at dawn if I was to say that Skywalker Sound didn't try their damnedest to make the new digital surround track as good as possible.
     
  3. David Illingworth II

    David Illingworth II Second Unit

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    I'm glad MGM listened and decided to put both tracks on, thereby exploring the potential the DVD has with the 5.1 and preserving the original for fans.
    And, of course, thank the Lord for the original burned in text.
     
  4. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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  5. Neil S. Bulk

    Neil S. Bulk Screenwriter

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  6. Matt_Stevens

    Matt_Stevens Supporting Actor

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    It's just to be we cannot have the mono track in uncompressed PCM instead of heavily compressed 192k.
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    www.deceptions.net/superman
     
  7. Tom-G

    Tom-G Screenwriter

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    I had the region 4 version and I was quite impressed with the 5.1 sound. It wasn't something that would give the dts track of Saving Private Ryan a run for its money, but for a mono track remixed to 5.1, it sounded damn fine. It didn't sound "gimmicky" as other remixes like Planet of the Apes (1968) or Thunderball.
    I always say to each his/her own. If you like the mono track, fine. If you like the 5.1 track, again that's fine. It's your movie and enjoyment of the presentation.
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    As for the bad rap about the characters--hey, I've seen space operas that put their emphasis on human personalities and relationships. They're called "Star Trek" movies. Give me transparent underwater cities and vast hollow senatorial spheres any day. --Roger Ebert on The Phantom Menace
     
  8. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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  9. Trevor H

    Trevor H Second Unit

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    My mono "Terminator" THX laserdisc sounds pretty good to me [​IMG]
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    Trevor Harder
    My HT Page
    tharder@excite.com
     
  10. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    Too bad the LD looks so bad next to the new 16x9 DVD.
    If only MGM would have provided the mono DD track at the max 384 or 448 data rate or in LPCM. Oh well...maybe one day we'll have the perfect movie format with great picture *and* sound.
    -dave
     
  11. Tom J. Davis

    Tom J. Davis Second Unit

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    Just finished watching this disc and was pleasantly suprised by the soundtrack. I really think it sounds great.
    The video quality was outstanding for this film. It won't give Gladiator a run for it's money, but no EE and a very smooth film like image ranks it high in my book.
     
  12. Lou Sytsma

    Lou Sytsma Producer

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    Sorry - but after listening to the mono and the 5.1 mix - no contest as to which is more involving for me.
    5.1 all the way! Kudos to Skywalker Sound for the job they did here.
    I especially like the POV shots from the Terminator and hearing his scanning sounds from all around!
    I'm glad both versions are there to cater to everyone's tastes.
    Quote:
    " When the station wagon crushes the toy truck, for example, the sound glides from the center channel into the left, as the truck quickly gets smooshed out of the screen. Not really necessary."
    Interesting. If this had been done originally or even in another movie comments would probably say that the movie exhibited an excellent soundstage with great directionality.
    [Edited last by Lou Sytsma on October 01, 2001 at 07:16 AM]
     
  13. Greg_Y

    Greg_Y Screenwriter

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  14. Rob Gillespie

    Rob Gillespie Producer

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    I've only given the disc a very quick spin, but my immediate impression of the new soundtrack was the same as with other similar 'new soundtracks' - it sounds too new. My eyes are telling me this is a low-ish budget film from the eighties, but my ears are telling me it's something much newer. It doesn't gel. Perhaps that's just my own weird interpretation, but it's a similar effect I've noticed on other titles.
    That said, it sounds pretty decent.
     
  15. Matt_Stevens

    Matt_Stevens Supporting Actor

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    I agree 100% about a remix altering a film. This is why it is just idiotic to NOT include the original soundtracks. Anchor Bay really screwed up with SUSPIRIA on this one. Including a downmixed (from the remix) 2.0 soundtrack instead of the original 4.0 soundtrack, is the very definition of stupid.
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  16. John Geelan

    John Geelan Screenwriter

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    Watched TERMINATOR twice this weekend and thought the movie looked great.
    I also enjoyed the new 5.1 sound. The mono version always had anemic bass.
    IMHO this is a great remaster of a classic movie.
    JohnG [​IMG]
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    [Edited last by John Geelan on October 01, 2001 at 04:23 PM]
     
  17. Rob Tomlin

    Rob Tomlin Producer

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  18. Ken Situ

    Ken Situ Stunt Coordinator

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    I don't understand why altering the aspect ratio is a NO NO, while altering soundtrack is a YES YES.
    Is it because aspect ratio is visual, therefore consider "art", while soundtrack is not visual, hence not considered as "art", therefore, one can change it anyway one pleases with?
     
  19. Anthony_D

    Anthony_D Stunt Coordinator

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    i really dont know how people can actually want a lame mono soundtrack instead of something much beter...why not go back to silent and black and white films too??
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  20. Scott_MacD

    Scott_MacD Supporting Actor

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