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Le Pacte Des Loups (HD DVD Import)

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#1 of 17 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott


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Posted June 01 2007 - 12:34 AM

got this from Xploitedcinema yesterday. Didn't have time to do more than chapter skip around a bit and check out the subtitle situation. Here is the basic scoop on how HD DVD handles subs the "C" button on the bottom of the remote lets you cycle thru 3 positions for the subs- on 2.35 AR movies it functions like this: first position is inside the 2.35 image area (perfect for people with constant height set-ups) second position has the subs straddling the bottom edge of the image area. when the subs are two lines, the top line is in the image area, the bottom is in the black bars third position has the letters in the black bar, with the top edge of the letters hugging the outside edge of the image area. "D" button changes the size, also in 3 increments The appearence of the subs here is purely functional. Basic white helvetica(?) style- just like you usually see in a theater presentation. Much better than the jaggy subs you get with standard def, but I have to be honest and say I was more impressed with the subs I saw on Sony's House Of Flying Artifacts. IIRC, they were italicized and yellow with a stroke of black around them. For some people , that might be too graphically garish, but I though they were very attractive and the black stroking contrasting with the yellow font meant that there would nver be any circumstance in which the subs would be difficult to read. That may not be the case with simple white fonts. I also had an odd thing happen when I first put the disc in. The Studio-Canal intro screen came up, then the menu language screen with the choice of French or English (and English was the second, but oddly enough the default selection). After I made the selection, the S-C intro screen came up again, but this time it was stepping one frame at a time, with the disc drive spinning and clicking as each frame advanced. Very bizarre. I stopped the disc and then hit play again, and the whole rigamaroll started up again, but this time played thru properly. Weird. only got a chance to chapter skip thru it a bit, but it appeared to be good. I thought the Universal edition of the film on dvd looked excellant, so while this had all the benefits of HD, I probably wasn't as impressed as I would have been had the previous version had 'issues'. There a bit of fine grain that seemed a little nosiey to me to make me wonder how much exactly was grain and how much was a digital by-product- but otherwise the picture had a very pleasing sense of dimensionality to it and colors were lush and vibrant. No speed up or pitch change to the audio that I could detect. In fact the audio track sounded very impressive- robust and forceful.

#2 of 17 OFFLINE   Miles


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Posted June 01 2007 - 03:11 AM

Cool, thx for the info Paul. FYI What HD-DVD player did you use?

#3 of 17 OFFLINE   Dan M

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Posted June 01 2007 - 04:14 AM

This is great news about the subs since I use constant heighth. But isn't this title slated for a US release in the coming months? I was holding off on buying the import

#4 of 17 OFFLINE   Jason Seaver

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Posted June 01 2007 - 04:32 AM

I don't think it's been announced, but given that Universal has the U.S. rights, that's probably just a temporary oversight. Posted Image
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#5 of 17 OFFLINE   Nick Graham

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Posted June 01 2007 - 04:57 AM

I keep bouncing between waiting to see if this is on Universal's fall slate or ordering from xploited.

#6 of 17 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott


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Posted June 01 2007 - 09:39 AM

I have the A-1 with 2.0 firmware. I don't know what the latest ver is, but the only problem I've had so far was with CoM, and that stuttered in a few places, but always recovered and played thru (it was a Netflix rental too).

I was back and forth on the fence over ordering the import too. I've heard rumours that Universal will have this out in October and I wouldn't be surprised. I ebayed my R1 copy off last year and hadn't watched it before that for a good year or two, so I was anxious to see it again- and there is very little due out over the summer I'm interested in so I figured, what the hell.
I'm also going to forego jumping into Blu-ray until Fall, so that freed up more of my budget as well.

In fact, I'm seriously thinking of getting the T2 import now- even though it seems like I keep upgrading that film, and then never watching it. The clips they show in the S-C trailer look fantastic though, and since there is a sub-title workaround (for us constant height folks), this should be the last version of that film I ever need to own Posted Image

#7 of 17 OFFLINE   Phil Menard

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Posted June 04 2007 - 08:40 AM

The only reason that you might jump the gun (as I did) is that the french HD DVD is the director's cut (aprox 152 min) , and the Universal may be the shorter variant. By the way, the time listed on the french packaging is incorrectly shown as 142 min.

#8 of 17 OFFLINE   Rolando



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Posted June 07 2007 - 04:11 PM

I have been considering ordering this from overseas as well. not sure it will be worth the cost but well... My question is: is it confirmed to be a 24fps transfer? no PAL speedup?
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#9 of 17 OFFLINE   Phil Menard

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Posted June 09 2007 - 02:10 AM

I did not noticed any "pal" sourced speedup with this title. I do not have a way of confirming this with the equipment that I have, but I am sensitive to the pitch change that signifies a pal sourced ntsc transfer.

#10 of 17 OFFLINE   Manus


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Posted June 10 2007 - 12:53 AM

Great film to have in HD . Monica's not bad either Posted Image Some subtle subtitle changes compared to the 3 disc Canadian Sp.Ed. and of course no meaningful extras like the other Studio Canal releases Posted Image

The sound also seems much more balanced . I found the old dts track on the previous set to be much too brash in the action sequences but here its much improved.

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#11 of 17 OFFLINE   Jim_K


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Posted June 10 2007 - 01:25 AM

I suppose I'll wait another month or so and see if Universal announces this for Oct. If they don't offer the longer cut I'll probably opt for this French import.
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#12 of 17 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott


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Posted June 10 2007 - 08:04 AM

After finally watching this in full, there are a few things that bother me about this disc. 1) the subs are jaggy. Not sure if this would be different if the player were outputting a progressive instead of interlaced signal- but I doubt it. This may have more to do with the fact they aren't fixed in position and size. The jaggies are also more noticeable when the subs are set to their smallest size. Most people aren't going to care as they still look quite a bit better than the sub streams you get with 480i/p, but I can't help being disappointed after seeing the way Blu-ray handled subs on at least one of its titles, which looked impossibly smooth and precise 2) the jaggy subs are just one aspect of the films picture that skews it more towards a digital feel than an analog film one. The grain I noticed earlier upon closer look seems to be mosquito noise or compression artifacting. In one scene ( 2:15:45) you can see the difference between the darker areas in the background and the characters clothing, and his brighter lit face. The darker areas in the picture are filled with what looks like swarms of angry insects, yet the brighter lit areas are much more clean and stable. If this is a quality of the film stock and lighting used, then it just isn't translating well during compression- or it is being exacerbated by the third point I have with the disc 3) mild ringing. Although it is mostly noticeable in some shots where there is a rare un-highly detailed backdrop (like the shots of the cross against the sky), I get the feeling that it is ominpresent and a cause of why the images, while extremely pretty, have an air of 'digital' to them. Now all this said, This disc also has one of the most 3 dimensional looks I've seen yet. Maybe THE most (though I don't watch a lot of discs just for eye candy, so my frame of reference isn't as large as some here). It also boasts some very vivid colors, and is extraoridinarily detailed. Some (many?) people are going to be very impressed with it. It's an easy to disc to enjoy as the audio features an aggressive track that is just as dimensional as the picture- which itself justs "pops" in a consistent and dazzling way. But the thing that I've liked most about the HD DVDs in my collection so far, has been the way the video mimics the analog look of film. This one doesn't. I've seen the film theatrically and do not remember it looking this digitally manipulated. I will be curious to see what the eventual Universal disc looks like. From my memory of the standard def version- it looked a lot like this HD DVD, just lacking in some res and finer detail. As for the cut of the film- I noticed nothing new that wasn't already in the Universal R1 dvd release.

#13 of 17 OFFLINE   Phil Menard

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Posted June 11 2007 - 10:34 AM

I don't have the Universal R1 release for comparison, but it is listed as running 142 minutes, give or take. I purchased the Canadian TVAfilms 3 disk version for both the extras and a longer cut of the film (details about which can be found on imdb) that runs about 152 minutes. This version is longer than the theatrical cut that I saw, and it is this same version that is on the French HD DVD. Some sites (like dvdcompare.net) refer to this as the "international" cut. The UK has a different cut from either the US theatrical or the international on dvd, but I don't know what version will be used for their HD DVD. Confused yet?

#14 of 17 OFFLINE   dkny75


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Posted June 14 2007 - 04:26 AM

The UK HD DVD is the exact same disc as the French HD DVD even though the back covers are different.

#15 of 17 OFFLINE   Douglas_H


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Posted June 15 2007 - 12:16 PM

The French version is currently not in stock at xploited and has been replaced by the UK version which is $2.95 cheaper. I bought the French version awhile back and am glad I did. What a great movie. As dkny75 stated, according to xploited the UK Optimum is identical to the French release.

#16 of 17 OFFLINE   Cees Alons

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Posted June 24 2007 - 11:09 AM

On the English Amazon, the run time of the English HD DVD (title: Brotherhood of the Wolf) is given as 137 mins. Is it absolutely certain that it's the same disc? Cees

#17 of 17 OFFLINE   dkny75


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Posted June 26 2007 - 03:43 AM

Yes, same exact runtime as per Tony at Xploited.

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