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DVD Reviews

HTF Review: Monty Python's The Meaning of Life SE + TRANSFER PROBLEM FEEDBACK



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148 replies to this topic

#41 of 149 OFFLINE   ChrisKe

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Posted September 15 2003 - 04:27 PM

[quote] I must give Universal credit for promptly setting up the replacement service. [quote]
They've had plenty of practice!!

Seriously tho' - yes kudos to them for getting this together quite quickly. I'm quite bemused about the comment that it is a small number of players though...

#42 of 149 OFFLINE   Anthony Thorne

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Posted September 04 2003 - 06:14 PM

I might wait for a PAL release if the Region 1 edition has been screwed up. I also noted those posts Don May Jr. did about the quality of this remaster - he felt that it was probably an authoring issue - and am glad of the warning. Universal should repress the disc.

#43 of 149 OFFLINE   Dean Cooper

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Posted September 11 2003 - 08:56 AM

sigh, well I am on my third disc and have not been able to get it to even play on my player. I have a JVC player (i'll find out the model soon) and all it does is spit the disc back out at me. Works fine on my PC though.

#44 of 149 OFFLINE   Brian Kidd

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Posted August 29 2003 - 12:43 AM

To me, MOL is as strong as the other two films. It's just different. Whereas LIFE OF BRIAN and THE HOLY GRAIL had definite storylines (although GRAIL kind of falls apart toward the end) MOL is a brilliant collection of surreal and intelligent skits with only the thinnest thread of continuity. I think if you look at it that way, you can appreciate it more. I hadn't exactly gotten too excited about this until I read this review. Now, it's a must-buy. Terrific review, Jason! No offense to the other reviewers, but your review is the best I've read on this site in a while. Keep up the good work.
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#45 of 149 OFFLINE   ChrisMatson

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Posted August 27 2003 - 03:11 PM

Nice review! Anyone want my rare, OOP version of this?

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#46 of 149 OFFLINE   Travis D

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Posted August 31 2003 - 08:56 AM

I'm just looking forward to "This man is about to die..." :drool:
*Child holds up Fullscreen version*
Child : Lord of the Rings, Lord of the Rings! Daddy, what does it say at the top? I can't read it.
Father : There are few who can. The language is that of Mordor, which I shall not utter here.
Child : Mordor?
Father : In the common tongue, it reads, 'One...

#47 of 149 OFFLINE   Ken_McAlinden

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Posted September 03 2003 - 05:54 AM

The restoration featurette is absolutely hysterical. I was pretty impressed by James Katz's deadpan delivery during the first part. I don't think I could have held it together enough to make it through the whole thing, especially when he gets to the part about the man being chased to his death by topless women and then segues into comparisons with Welles, Kubrick, Lean, etc.

In fact, I think he gives a more convincing performance in the featurette than Gilliam. Posted Image Very funny stuff.

Regards,
Ken McAlinden
Livonia, MI USA

#48 of 149 OFFLINE   Ken_McAlinden

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Posted September 04 2003 - 02:36 AM

[quote] I'm sorry, but IMHO, it looks like Universal dropped the ball on this one. The film is a mess on progressive scan players (it appears misflagged). I had to force my RP-91 into video mode, and even then, aliasing artifacts were visible throughout. [quote] You have a valid point. Some sequences of the film have aliasing problems and some do not. It is inconsistent and annoying.

Regards,
Ken McAlinden
Livonia, MI USA

#49 of 149 OFFLINE   Ken_McAlinden

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Posted September 04 2003 - 07:33 AM

Different portions of the transfer seem to have the aliasing issue. I don't know if they digitally spliced different transfers together or what, but, for instance, if you (ahem) watch the "death sentence" scene (ahem), there is lots of aliasing, but if you watch the "salmon mousse" section after it, it is gone. This is from memory, so I will have to verify it this evening to be sure. This may involve stepping through the "death sentence" sequence frame by frame multiple times, but I am willing to do that for you folks because that's how much I care about you.:b Regards,
Ken McAlinden
Livonia, MI USA

#50 of 149 OFFLINE   ErichH

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Posted August 28 2003 - 09:10 AM

a fish a fish - i did love it...like a son........ e

#51 of 149 OFFLINE   Herb Kane

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Posted August 28 2003 - 01:28 AM

Great review Jason! Aaaaaaaa wafer thin mint....??? Herb.
My Top 25 Noirs:

25. 711 Ocean Drive (1950), 24. Odds Against Tomorrow (1959), 23. Desperate (1947), 22. Pushover (1954), 21. The Blue Dahlia (1946), 20. The File on Thelma Jordon (1949), 19. He Ran All the Way (1951), 18. The Asphalt Jungle (1950), 17. The Killing (1956), 16. I Walk Alone (1948),...

#52 of 149 OFFLINE   Dome Vongvises

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Posted October 07 2003 - 03:32 PM

I've been holding off on purchasing this DVD. Can somebody post screenshots so I can see what the problem is?

#53 of 149 OFFLINE   Stefan A

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Posted October 01 2003 - 10:08 PM

On my Toshiba 3900, this movie looked horrible. For now, I replaced it with a Panasonic s55. No problems at all. I guess it IS player specific.

#54 of 149 OFFLINE   Scott Weinberg

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Posted August 28 2003 - 01:08 AM

Excellent review, Jason. Can't wait to get this DVD!! Posted Image

#55 of 149 OFFLINE   JeremySt

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Posted September 11 2003 - 10:03 AM

There is definitly some kind of error on this DVD. On my PS2 into a standard interlaced set, the picture is UNWATCHABLE. The image has a an undescribable "jumping" effect. On my Denon DVD-2900, the jumping is gone, but are there when you pause or slo-mo. The aliasing effects are there as well.

#56 of 149 OFFLINE   JeremySt

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Posted September 11 2003 - 01:56 PM

Ron,

prob #1 Watch the beginning of chapter 19. as the camera pans left, watch the rocks on the beach. The rocks look they are alive!

The "jumping" error (best way I can describe it) is only apparent on my Denon when I pause the image. On my PS2, the problem is there throughout normal playback.

It appears like a 3-2 error, as though thee player is not detecting it correctly. It looks like on every 3rd frame, the picture jumps, and the result is terrible lines appearing.

The closest example I could find is this example on hometheaterhifi.com
Posted Image

#57 of 149 OFFLINE   JeremySt

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Posted September 14 2003 - 06:06 AM

Ron, are you watching it on a large screen with Progressive Scan?

#58 of 149 OFFLINE   JeremySt

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Posted September 17 2003 - 10:25 AM

Yes, I got the script read treatment... but the guy concluded by singing "always look on the bright side of life." Funny.Posted Image

I felt like telling him that was not from Meaning of Life, but Im sure the guy was just trying to keep the phone time as brief as possible.

#59 of 149 OFFLINE   Felix Martinez

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Posted September 04 2003 - 02:29 AM

[quote] Other than those two relatively minor issues, there really is not a whole lot to complain about, and Universal has certainly done this film (and its fans) justice, in terms of its video presentation! [quote]

*sigh*

I'm sorry, but IMHO, it looks like Universal dropped the ball on this one. The film is a mess on progressive scan players (it appears misflagged). I had to force my RP-91 into video mode, and even then, aliasing artifacts were visible throughout.

Some very nice extras - wish Universal paid more attention to the authoring of the feature itself.

My $.02,

#60 of 149 OFFLINE   Felix Martinez

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Posted September 04 2003 - 06:10 AM

[quote] Don May Jr of Synapse is also indicating over at Mobius www.mhvf.net that there appear to be substantial PAL-NTSC artifacts visible and that the picture quality was better on the original Image release. Anyone confirm this? [quote]

Interesting. Well, I held off selling my OOP Image Entertainment copy and did in fact do an A-B comparison with the new Universal version throughout the film.

Shadow and fine details are much improved in the new Universal transfer, and even if you zoom and re-scale the non-16:9 image of the older release (i.e via the Panny RP-91), the framing seems wrong - too cropped on all sides. The image of the new transfer is also much more stable. Mosquito noise is present around fine details, but the Image Entertainment version is worse.

The only benefit of the older release is that it appears to be encoded properly so you don't have that bizarre-o interlacing freakshow watching it via progressive scan in "auto" mode. To be fair, the new Universal version is quite watchable using the RP-91's "video" mode - but again, interlace artifacts crop up now and again.

If this is, in fact, an authoring screw-up, I would think a recall is in order. Universal was good at correcting the much more minor (IMHO) framing probs in BTTF, so I would hope they do something similar here.

UPDATE
I just e-mailed Universal about the prob. Will relay the response when I receive it.

Cheers,





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