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Subtitles on Criterion's W.C. Fields 6 Film Collection - Is Criterion Joking?


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#1 of 4 OFFLINE   JoeDoakes

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Posted July 18 2011 - 01:58 AM

I have Criterion's collection of W.C. Field's 6 short films. The collection advertises that it has subtitles for the hearing impaired. The DVD menu does not have a set up section for turning on the subtitles (although it does have a "color bar" selection, but what am I going to do with that for 6 black and white films). The booklet says that the subtitles can be turned on by pressing the "subtitle" button, but none of my remote controls have a subtitle button. It occurred to me that maybe they were talking about close captions, but turning on close captions for my tv doesn't seem to do anything for the DVD. Finally, it also occurred to me that the whole subtitle claim was a Fieldsian practical joke, but it seems more likely that the problem is my own lack of technical knowledge. Does anyone know what the answer is?

#2 of 4 OFFLINE   JoHud

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Posted July 18 2011 - 02:17 AM

It's like that for pretty much all of Criterion's DVDs for some reason--you need to either push a "subtitles" button on your remote, or use a computer and turn them on using video player controls. I agree it can be annoying an my remote control for my DVD player years ago lacked this feature, which only became an issue when watching English films in the Criterion Collection. If neither of those options are available, another is to purchase an inexpensive universal remote that has this button. That solved my problem up until I bought a new player.

#3 of 4 OFFLINE   Ken_McAlinden

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Posted July 18 2011 - 02:19 AM


Originally Posted by JoeDoakes 

I have Criterion's collection of W.C. Field's 6 short films. The collection advertises that it has subtitles for the hearing impaired. The DVD menu does not have a set up section for turning on the subtitles (although it does have a "color bar" selection, but what am I going to do with that for 6 black and white films). The booklet says that the subtitles can be turned on by pressing the "subtitle" button, but none of my remote controls have a subtitle button. It occurred to me that maybe they were talking about close captions, but turning on close captions for my tv doesn't seem to do anything for the DVD. Finally, it also occurred to me that the whole subtitle claim was a Fieldsian practical joke, but it seems more likely that the problem is my own lack of technical knowledge. Does anyone know what the answer is?


I only viewed this title as a rental, and I can't recall whether it had subtitles or not.  That being said, DVD/BD remotes without subtitle buttons usually have other ways of turning them on without using the on-disc menu.  For instance, most Panasonic players have a "Display" button that pulls up a player-generated menu screen including subtitle options.


Ken McAlinden
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#4 of 4 OFFLINE   mdnitoil

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Posted July 18 2011 - 08:31 AM

Yeah, my Sony and Philips have a subtitle button, however my old Panny had to go through the menus to get to it.




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