Are we Obsessed with DVD Reviews?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Peter Overduin, Jul 25, 2002.

  1. Peter Overduin

    Peter Overduin Supporting Actor

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    My first reaction to the recent thread asking for a LOTR review was one of annoyance. Why would anyone want a review of DVD they already know they are going to buy...or not.

    Then I began to realize the number of times I have 'stumbled' accross reviews of obscure or forgotten titles and was subsequently driven to purchase them. Most often, DVDs of films I have purchased that I never saw before which were based solely on a review I read here at HTF were positive. Some not, but I have come to realize that I go out of my way to look for DVD reviews of titles I have never seen of or even heard of before.

    So now, my initial sense of annoyance of the "Where's the LOTR review" has given way to the sad realization that "Review Reading" has become an integral (and un-realized till now) element of my HT addiction...sigh.
     
  2. Robin Warren

    Robin Warren Second Unit

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    Reading reviews is kinda fun, gives you a much better idea of whether to rent or buy. Once I get comfortable with a reviewer, I know whether or not I am going to shell out some dough for a particular title. On this site, the reviews are fantastic and full of detail. Extras are a determining factor for me when it comes to purchasing and I really enjoy reading an in depth review of the supplements. Normally the back of a DVD cover gives only a cursory overview of the extras and it is tough to tell if they are worthwhile. Reading some of the reviews on this site instantly allow me to know if a disc is a must have.
    Now, LOTR is and has been a must buy for me for several months, but the anticipation I get from reading the reviews makes it all the more fun. On August 6th, when I get to pick up the title, I will feel all the better because of it.
     
  3. Matthew_S

    Matthew_S Second Unit

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    I think it would be safe to say that most of us here are addicted to dvd in general. [​IMG]
     
  4. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

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    I hope people are Obsessed with DVD reviews, otherwise the hours spent writing them would be wasted.[​IMG]
    I do think it offers an opportunity to at least get a feel for a release, to see what its strong or weak points may be. As someone who writes reviews, I often stumble upon gems I would never have found otherwise, which allows giving credit to a great film that could go unnoticed (such as .Careful, He Might Hear You or Lionheart: The Jesse Martin Story)
    I do agree that one needs to get a feel for an reviewer's work in order to weigh how relevant their observations will be to you personally, but with a wide enough range of reviews to select from, there should be something to help you make a purchase decision one way or another.
     
  5. Peter Overduin

    Peter Overduin Supporting Actor

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    You raise another interesting point Jeff. It was reviews that got me into several anime titles and anime as a genre (for which you are partially responsible! [​IMG]). I had never 'experimented' with this genre before and now see it as a treasure trove of great films.
    Grave of the Fireflies, for example, is a film I had never heard of, and when I did paid little attention to until I read the reviews. Now, it is easily one of my favorite films, period. I can't wait for the SE of this title in October!
    I know I am not alone in expressing my appreciation for the review "work" that is done here at HTF and dOc, the Bits and elsewhere. I tried my hand at it briefly and that failed experiment gave me a real appreciation for the effort that it takes. Keep it up!
     
  6. Art Martinez

    Art Martinez Stunt Coordinator

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    LOTR was on my DVD's to buy list since I heard production was ramping up back in summer of '99. (I read a small article in Cinescape Mag. and went to the official movie website to find that they only had about five conceptual art pics.) Sorry about the small rant, the fanboy in me came out.[​IMG]
    Anyway, while LOTR is a no brainer for me, I was looking, and still am, forward to Ron's review of the disc. Most of the reviews that Ron posts are of movies I have seen, and I have usually made a decision as to whether or not I will buy the disc. The great thing about Ron's reviews are that you get information that you do not get on other disc reviews. The sound and picture quality, the extra features, and the quality of extra features. I have high expectations for the FOTR disc as it is a movie I have been wanting to see since I was 10 years old, and because of the high standard that I have come to love from New Line. It would have just been nice for someone as knowledgeable as Ron to confirm what should be one of the best DVD release of the year and perhaps of all time.
    PS- Ron, you do plan on reviewing the disc, even if it comes after the street date, don't you?
     
  7. Dean DeMass

    Dean DeMass Screenwriter

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    Art,

    Ron posted in his Blade II review thread that he won't be even getting the 2-disc FOTR. He is going to wait for the 4-disc set. I think he is a bit pissed that New Line snubbed the Internet DVD Review Community (I know I would be).

    -Dean-
     
  8. Jason Harbaugh

    Jason Harbaugh Cinematographer

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    *stands up*

    Hello

    My name is Jason Harbaugh.

    I haven't read a review for 18 hours.

    My last review was Blade II and because of it, I wasn't able to sleep. I sat infront of my blank theatre screen imagining what I would be seeing, hearing and fealing come september 3rd.

    I am a DRA (DVD Review Addict)

    *sits down*
     
  9. Thomas T

    Thomas T Cinematographer

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    I'm one of those people who tend (but not always) to scroll down to the how does the disc look, how does the disc sound and what extras are there part of the review since thats what I really want to find out. I already know if I like the movie or not so what the reviewer thinks of the actual movie means very little to me.
    Unlike most DVD reviewers, Ron is open and honest enough to annouce his tastes up front and admit a film isn't his cup of tea (like his recent Gosford Park review) therefore alerting the reader to take the review in the context of someone who doesn't like "this kind of film" and therefore not to take it as the definitive word.
     
  10. Douglas Bailey

    Douglas Bailey Second Unit

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    Douglas Bailey
    [group chorus] Hi, Jason. :)
    To address Peter Overduin's original post: I read reviews mostly to see if there's any reason for me to cancel my pre-order. I generally don't worry about A/V quality unless it's listed as completely horrendous, but I do look for any mention of edited or missing material. So I read reviews as "I'll buy this unless..."
    The most recent case in point is Heavenly Creatures (specifically, the brief confusion about its announced aspect ratio): we're assured now that this will in fact be an anamorphic 2.35:1 disc, but I'll be scanning the advance reviews just in case. If it somehow turns out to be pan-and-scan, I'll cancel it in a heartbeat.
    Another example: the box set of The Young Ones (due out 9/17/2002). Previous US releases (on tape) have supposedly had some of the guest-band musical interludes edited out (owing to problems with the music rights). If a reviewer says these segments are missing from the DVD release, I'll just skip it.
    I will occasionally read reviews on www.dvdmg.com to help me decide whether to pick up a film on DVD (if I'm not already committed to it). But most of the time I'm just looking for bad news about discs I already intend to get. :)
    doug
     
  11. Jeff_A

    Jeff_A Screenwriter

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    Information is always a good thing. I, for one, love reviews and actually seek them out. [​IMG]
     
  12. Art Martinez

    Art Martinez Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the info Dean, like I said LOTR is a must buy for me, but it still would have been nice to hear what Ron had to say about the technical merits of the 2 disc set. I know New Line does not want to play favorites, but if you can't trust Ron and the HTF who can you trust not to post spoilers and or engage in any illegal distributing?

    Damn the Man!
     

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