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A Few Words About A few words about... ™ Backdraft -- in HD-DVD (1 Viewer)

Robert Harris

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The second film that I viewed this evening was Ron Howard's Backdraft, photographed in a very naturalistic style in 1991 by Mikael Salomon, who was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects for his efforts.

Photographed in the Super 35 format, which uses the entire width of the 35mm frame, and then extracts the anamorphic image as a virtual fillet from the center portion of the frame, is generally thought of as yielding an occasionally unattractive, grainy image.

Not so in Universal's HD-DVD.

This is a DVD with an extremely natural look, and a virtually grainless texture, delivering Mr. Howard's fire fighter opus to HD with all of its quality intact.

The studio as pulled a rabbit out of the technical hat with this release, which is a pleasure to view via the new HD-DVD that presents an on-screen image that replicates film.

Universal is running on all 12 cylinders in the new HD world, and has quite a number of high quality productions coming our way very shortly in the format, inclusive of 12 Monkeys, The Thing (1982), and The Mummy, as well as a gladiator picture, the first HD release of a Technirama production, and, as if people don't already have it pre-ordered, King Kong, which should be magnificent.

Backdraft is another beautifully rendered HD-DVD from Universal, with great appeal, that takes full advantage of the new format.

Highly Recommended.

RAH
 

MarcoAD

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Nice review. I liked the film so I'll have to go pick it up.

Which Gladiator flick are you referring to???
 

dpippel

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Exactly right. It's being released 10/24 on HD-DVD. I think Mr. Harris may be particularly interested in this one. ;)
 

Michael Osadciw

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Thanks Robert for those words. I would like to see this film again...although I'm not sure I can tolerate the technical inaccuracies of firefighting in this film...it's too much of a joke for us firefighters to take seriously. :)

Mike
 

Robert Harris

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Michael,

Wasn't aware of your occupation. Would you mind sharing some of the more interesting "Hollywoodizations" in the film?

RAH
 

Michael Osadciw

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Robert

I would love to. I'll have to view this film again since it's probably been a good eight years since I've seen it. Some things I remember are the complete lack of SCBA (Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus) on the firefighters...of course this is done for the viewer to see the actor's face...but what firefighter goes inside a building unequipped? ...I also remember many fires burning with so little smoke...(smoke is the byproduct of an incomplete combustion...and that applies to all real fires).

Ladder 49 was a bit more on the ball...but for entertainment purposes some rules were broken too...like doing rescue searches for victims all alone without a hose line as your lifeline. In a smoke-filled house (be it day or night) you cannot see an inch in front of your face...it's all done by touch. To see Mr. Phoenix run around in the room, finding a victim and pulling her out while finding his way back on his own would be almost impossible...and insane on the firefighter's part. It is so easy to become disorientated...adrenaline is pumping, noise everywhere...the second you don't pay attention which way you've turned you are lost and would have to activate the alarm on your airpack for others to find you before you run out of air...

I'll try to get Backdraft over the next little while...I'll point out what is Hollywood and what isn't based on my department's policies.

Mike
 

Tim Glover

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Haven't watched my copy yet (been out of town) but this one's on my list to watch this week! Terrific movie that I haven't seen in years!
 

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