2 DVD articles (1 interesting, 1 so-so)

Discussion in 'DVD' started by David Lambert, Dec 30, 2003.

  1. David Lambert

    David Lambert Executive Producer

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    Two new DVD articles that I haven't seen mentioned here today:

    USA Todays' "DVD Do's And Dont's" (co-written by occassional HTF member T.K. Arnold, best known for his writing at Video Store Magazine).


    That's the interesting one, and I'm sure almost every HTFer (excepting the occassional one who just likes a healthy debate) will agree with it. The so-so one is:

    CNN's Top ten Best DVDs of 2003. I can't believe they left off stuff like The Two Towers and Looney Tunes Golden Collection!
     
  2. Chad R

    Chad R Cinematographer

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    I know it's practically sacreligious to say around these parts, but

    The Two towers

    although exhaustive was just more of the same from the first film right down to menu design. I much rather like that they mentioned some real gems such as Chaplin (even with the PAL speedup that never bothered me) and Casablanca.

    Now, the exclusion of

    Looney Tunes


    was perplexing.
     
  3. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Thanks, David, for the heads-up on these articles. Interesting indeed. [​IMG]

    Although ...... USA Today's very last comment seemed (to me) to be a rather
    silly--and highly unattainable--one. .......

    >>> "...every major living star should join in on commentary and interviews."

    Easier said than implemented, no doubt. Certain stars probably couldn't care less about doing commentaries.

    I also heartily disagree with this observation......

    >>> "Why do some studios still insist on listing scene selection, subtitles, and Dolby Stereo as Special Features?"

    I rather like having ALL features ("Special" or not) listed on the packaging. And I'm sure many, many people would frown severely if "Subtitles" were suddenly eliminated from any packaging specs. [​IMG]
     
  4. Scott_J

    Scott_J Cinematographer

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    I saw that USA Today article while flipping through the paper this morning. As I was reading it, I knew it was perfect for us HTFers. I agreed with pretty much everything in it, except the first quote in David VP's post. As David said, that's not likely to happen. I would put Steven Spielberg in the "major living star" category (even though he's not an actor), and he'll never do a commentary (at least not in the foreseeable future).
    I don't want to put words in the authors' mouths, but I don't think they're saying they want subtitle info to be left off the packaging - they just want it to be taken off the Special Features box (Paramount, in particular, is notorious for this practice) - with which I wholeheartedly agree. That kind of info should be reserved for the technical specs/grid area of the packaging.
     
  5. David Lambert

    David Lambert Executive Producer

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    Again, I think you have to connect to what the point really is here. And this is that we don't want to see situations like the one below, where "routine" things like subtitles, video format, and Dolby Stereo are the ONLY "special features"! These are specs, nothing more. They should be listed on the back, yeah, but they aren't "special features". And "scene selection" should never be mentioned on the back...it should be a 100% given!

    [​IMG]


    Edit: I see Scott got half my point made while I was putting this together. Ah, well! [​IMG]
     
  6. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Point #2 -- taken.
    I agree -- again. [​IMG]

    However -- in the above Paramount packaging example, the ONLY place to list ANY features or specs is within the box provided in the upper-left corner. Paramount obviously likes to "lump" all of this stuff together into one "Features" box (subtitles, commentaries, featurettes, Dolby 5.1, etc.). I guess they do it this way to save space on the covers as well.

    Universal DVDs utilize that nice "Specs Grid" type of dealie, which I like. Although, sometimes Universal refuses to list ANY of the "Special Features" at all on some discs (even though they might be plentiful!).

    I agree with you though, guys, that "Subtitles", "Production Notes" (et al) aren't really all that "Special" as far as "Special Features" go.

    How about this --- We should promote the idea of Paramount (and some other outfits too who "lump" these items all together) simply changing the labelling of their "Features" info box, to something like "DVD SPECS & SPECIAL FEATURES". (How's that, kids?? [​IMG])

    (Actually, this is just another one of those "semantics" things that gets many videophiles worked up into a lather. It doesn't really matter much one way or the other. These things ARE "Features" on the DVDs, just not all that "Special", circa 2004 AD. [​IMG] [​IMG])
     
  7. David Lambert

    David Lambert Executive Producer

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    What I would like instead, is if all remaining DVD companies adapt the spec grid like Universal and Columbia and others have been using, and separately have an area for Special Features. If there are no Special Features, then use that area for another pic or whatever.
     
  8. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    On that back cover for Better Off Dead that David posted, I noticed one thing that amused me. The special features grid says:

    * Widescreen Version Enhanced for 16:9 TVs
    * English Subtitles
    * Dolby Digital
    * English Stereo
    -- Special Fatures not rated

    My question is, if they were to rate the special features, what rating would Widescreen Enhancement get?

    What if a foreign language title was released with English subtitles as a special feature? Would the movie be rated with or without the subtitles? Would that affect the rating? Could you get a G rating for a foreign language film, provided any profanities are present only in an unrated subtitle stream?

    So many questions...
     
  9. Stephen_J_H

    Stephen_J_H All Things Film Junkie

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    Funny that we should be mentioning the spec grid when Universal couldn't be bothered to use it for Seabiscuit. You actually have to go through every single copy and read the near-microscopic print on the back to see whether you're holding a widescreen version or not.
     
  10. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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    the article mentions Blade Runner's Directors Cut.

    Which version is that ? either from 1992 or the new cut

    Anybody know this ?

    [​IMG]
     

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