Anyone else finding extras less important?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Zane Charron, Oct 3, 2002.

  1. Zane Charron

    Zane Charron Second Unit

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    Maybe it's because I have, literally, a couple of hundred unwatched DVDs and have no time for them (a whole different story), but I'm finding more and more that the supplemental features that I used to get so excited about mean less and less to me. I suppose they are nice to have, but I just want the films out on DVD with good picture and sound. If I'm a big fan of a film I'll watch some or all of the extras, but I just can't go through and watch the film yet again with commentary (to say nothing of discs with more than one commentary). And the amount of extras on some of the discs out now is just insane. When would someone actually have the time to go through all the stuff in say, the Die Hard or Godfather boxsets?

    Anyone else out there feel the same way?
     
  2. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast

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    Amen. I thought I was the only one who had no use at all for extras. If extras disappeared overnight I would lose no sleep. But since we have the technology, why not keep them, eh?
     
  3. Dave_P.

    Dave_P. Supporting Actor

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    I also rarely watch the extras, usually just deleted scenesouttakes if I really liked the movie. I just don't have the time, with all my unwatched stuff. Then again, I'm from the laserdisc days, so with the exception of the Criterion and a few special editions, every LD was barebones!
     
  4. NeilEdwards

    NeilEdwards Stunt Coordinator

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    Interesting you bring this up. I was just thinking about this yesterday when I sat through the entire commentary for "Love Story". I had watched the short retrospective prior to this and found that the commentary just rehashed what Arthur Hiller said in the short. I was waiting for him to say something important, but he never really did.

    Yes, if the extras ... especially the dull commentaries ... went away, I would not be unhappy. The only problem, is that you have to sit through them to find out if they are any good. And there are some gems out there, but fewer and fewer.

    As far as deleted scenes. After watching a few, I realized why they were deleted. So, why bother to watch them.

    With over 1,500 DVD's in my collection, it really slows up my getting to watch the new ones. I keep slipping behind. Soon, I will have to make a decision just NOT to watch all the extra stuff, unless I am really head over heels in love with the movie.
     
  5. Runar_R

    Runar_R Second Unit

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    Well, I just bought a movie SOLELY for the extras, the 3-disc set Cleopatra. Not sure if I'll ever sit through the whole movie, but the 2-hour documentary is great! [​IMG]
    So I guess it comes down to the quality of the extras. I don't think I'll watch the 'behind the scenes' featurettes on LOTR another time, but I bet I'll listen to the commentary tracks on Seven again
     
  6. Zane Charron

    Zane Charron Second Unit

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    Yes, certainly the quality of the extras is a factor in watching them. I hardly ever watch them more than once, though it does happen sometimes. Funny enough, I'll watch a film which has a commentary and tell myself that I'll listen to the commentary in the next few days or week, while the film is still fresh in my mind. Of course, I don't get around to it. By the time I do, enough time has passed (several months) that I feel I have to rewatch the film again before I listen to the commentary.

    I used to actually sit down and watch the film with the commentary, but now when I DO listen to one it's usually in the background on the computer while I'm doing housework or something.

    I'm not saying the extras shouldn't be there for those who appreciate them, I just don't have the time and often not the desire to go through them anymore. Especially with so many unwatched films.
     
  7. John Stone

    John Stone Supporting Actor

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    When I first started collecting DVDs, extra features were very important to me. Now I barely care about them at all, except for older movies, which tend to have less sugar-coating on their extra content. For example, I love watching good retrospective documentaries like the ones contained on the 'Jaws', 'One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest' and 'Carrie' DVDs. Ebert's commentaries on the 'Dark City' and 'Citizen Kane' discs are also examples of what I consider worthwhile extra content. When I sit down to watch the extra features contained on most newer releases, I just feel like I'm doing it because I "should", when I'd actually rather be watching another movie! [​IMG] So I've pretty much stopped watching most extra features. I'm a sucker for bloopers and outtakes, though, so I always watch those. [​IMG]
     
  8. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    Extras are the lifeblood of what makes DVD special

    Then again, half-assed extras are NOT

    EPKs are NOT extras

    Good documentaries, gag reels, deleted scenes are what I want/love. Blade 2 was everything I want in an SE (well, cept the gag reel)
     
  9. Peter McM

    Peter McM Supporting Actor

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    The older the film is, the less I concern myself with extras. The restoration effort by the studio is more important, i.e.--Grease, the upcoming Flashdance, etc.

    With new movies, I hope for a bit more. With Star Trek Nemesis, I hope Paramount will see fit to including the 48-plus minutes of footage said to be left on the editing room floor.
     
  10. Piers C

    Piers C Stunt Coordinator

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    Extras can really add to your enjoyment & appreciation of a film. Even ones that you may have seen countless times in the past.

    Hearing directly from the filmmakers and going behind scenes, can be a great education. Its also providing a forum for these film makers and an archive that will benefit others in the future.

    I don't think any filmmaker or viewer would want to have extras, which compromise the actual film. We are starting to see this trend as studios try to stuff as much as possible on to a disc. The medium can't handle it and the film often suffers as a result.

    Extras have nothing to do with the DVDs that you haven't got around to watching. Maybe you should buy less?
     
  11. PhilipG

    PhilipG Cinematographer

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  12. Paul_Medenwaldt

    Paul_Medenwaldt Supporting Actor

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  13. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    I go back and forth on extras and commentaries. My first DVD was Terminator 2, and I spent hours with all the hours of extras, text, etc. I was just so happy with my new toy.

    Then I sort of got bored with them and just wanted the movies, watching some documentaries and deleted scenes and that's it.

    Now, I'm going back and checking out some of the commentaries and am, as I expected, getting mixed results. The most fun commentary is for This Is Spinal Tap, where they act like the band and treat it as a real documentary. Last night I watched Do the Right Thing with the commentary and it was cool because they had Spike, Joi Lee, the cinematographer, and the production designer all edited in. This made it interesting to listen to it. The opposite of this was Nixon, which has two seperate commentaries by Oliver Stone. Why couldn't they just edit them together? Most of the time he doesn't even say anything. That was annoying.

    Of course, I don't buy as many DVDs as most forum members, so I can spend more time with the ones I do have.

    I plan on checking out the commentaries for Amadeus and Braveheart next.
     
  14. Adam_WM

    Adam_WM Screenwriter

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    I think to not support Extra Features on DVD's is to not support DVD. There are 3 things that make DVD worthwhile:
    1) Picture quality
    2) Sound quality
    3) Extra features

    Without one, there are none, so to speak.

    Don't get me wrong, I like GOOD extra features and not fluff, but c'mon guys, are you telling me that if this new 4-disc LOTR came out barebones but had simply great picture and sound that you wouldn't be complaining?
     
  15. Chad A Wright

    Chad A Wright Supporting Actor

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    It all depends on the film. Most these days are filled with ass kissing EPK crap that I refuse to watch. I think they have spoiled a lot of extras for us. I am so used to seeing those tacked onto a disc that I have started paying less attention to the extras.

    That being said, good extras are absolutely priceless. I am a huge fan of how films are made, so good quality extras are one of the top things on my list. I rewatch the documentaries on both Jaws and Star Wars TPM every few months or so. They are some of the best I've seen. After getting a preview disc for the extended edition of LOTR, I am so pumped for that set. The disc had snippets from some of the documentaries and they were great. This could be one of the best sets ever.

    The crown jewel of extras for me would have been a commentary on Jaws. We can only dream.
     
  16. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    I love the extras (especially of the caliber of most Criterions, the recent Citizen Kane, etc.) Though they can get way too overdone—way too much commentary on the three Godfather films, for example.

    I watch and listen to them all, but if some get too slow I’ll skip sections.
     
  17. Zane Charron

    Zane Charron Second Unit

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    Of course I realize that everyone has their own favorite films that they want the extras for. What's especially cool is when an old, obscure film that you never thought would see the light of day comes out as a full blown special edition. Whoda thunk that 'Incubus' would ever come out on DVD, let alone with interviews and commentaries.

    I think extras being the "lifeblood" of DVD is a bit of an exaggeration. Remember when a special edition that we'd all drool over had a commentary, a few deleted scenes and a short doc? Now we have on some releases 4 or 5 times that amount. Hell, even that cruddiest little film these days gets all the bells and whistles 4 months after it's theatrical release. DVDs were just as special back when we had a bare bones Jerry Maguire from Columbia/Tristar looking and sounding great as they are now, I think.

    Surely the extras can add appreciation to a film, I'm not denying that. I love extras too, I just don't watch them like I used to. I'm not making digs at people who do.
     
  18. Brian Kaz

    Brian Kaz Second Unit

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  19. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    Yes, when you dont have time to even watch your DVD's, the extras are un-important.

    But they are a must-have for me.

    I had some time eariler this week so I un-wapped my copy of Resident Evil and fired it up and turned on the commentary track. To my shock, here is Milla Jovovich ("Yoo-va-vich" as she grumbles to co-star Michelle) - having a fun talk with co-star Michelle Rodriguez and others. Yes, they talk a bit about the movie, but even more about shooting in Berlin, video games (Milla plays RE, Half Life, Grand Theft Auto), etc. Suddenly these actors are.. just people. Just a whole lot of fun.
     
  20. Rhett_Y

    Rhett_Y Screenwriter

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    Me personally, I can care less about the extras now. I am so pissed off at movie studio's trying to fit every god forsaken thing on a one disk DVD, so the picture quality sucks and the sound sucks. Give me a bare bones dvd with the highest possible bit-rate for sound and high PQ you can get on the damn disk and put all the other crap on the second or third disks.

    My rant is over...thanks
    R~
     

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