Behold! Excalibur in HD DVD

AaronSCH

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Aaron Schneiderman
Forged when the format was young... I couldn't wait to pop this into the HD A1 when I got home this evening. Though I didn't have time to view the whole film, what I have seen so far looks spectacular. Though much of this film was photographed in soft focus, the increased detail and rich colors delivered by this HD DVD really pay tribute to Alex Thomson's cinematography. The daylight forest scenes reveal details in every leaf of foliage and pebble on the ground. Excalibur shimmers in the daylight as it rises from the lake...just beautiful. My only complaint is the lack of extras and the photoshop cover. Please Warner Bros., use poster art whenever you can.
 

JonZ

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I dont understand the complaints about this transfer. I think it looks beautiful.

Just finished watching it.
 

Craig S

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One of the problems with the SD version was that it appeared the framing was a little tight. Can anyone out there who's seen both the SD and the new HD-DVD discs comment on the framing, and if there are any improvements?
 

Jace_A

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Mar 19, 2005
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The framing on the SD-DVD wasn't tight in so much as it was badly misframed. The DVD was matted incorrectly. Hopefully the HD-DVD has fixed this, but I'm not hopeful.
 

Ric Easton

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I'd also like to know if it was framed correctly. I'm still hanging on to my old laserdisc. Alas, I've been hoping for a DVD re-issue of this movie (I haven't jumped in to HD-DVD yet). When I heard it was coming out in an HD format, I was quite suprised.
 

DeeF

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There are a lot of heads being cut off mid-forehead. I don't know if it's right or wrong, just noting it...
 

Dave>h

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May 1, 2004
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For anyone who has seen this HD DVD, how was the sound track?

Did they do anything special to it? AS I recall on the SD DVD, it was a 5.1 remix but it was not very good. The only use of surrounds at all was the scene with the Grail at the end...

Thanks for the comments.

Dave
 

DeeF

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I can't really comment on the soundtrack. I have to use PCM, which puts out a 2.0 track.
 

Paul_Scott

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Has Boorman commented on the misframing? presumably if he'd given a commentary track he was watching the same transfer we are seeing.
If he hasn't commented on this issue in the last 5 or 6 years, either he hasn't seen it, or else he didn't think it was as big a deal as the viewers.

I used to have the LD and the only thing I remember about it was being disappointed to learn that the film wasn't shot in 2.35 but a much less wider AR.
 

Ric Easton

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Great. This probably would have been one of the first movies I purchased when jumping into Hi-Def DVD. Looks like I can still sit out the format war. Very disappointing that they couldn't get this properly framed for even the HD version. Some movies get no respect.
 

Mark Bendiksen

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Mar 16, 1999
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I cannot attest to the quality (or lack thereof) of the HD-DVD release, but I can say one thing definitively: The current SD-DVD of Excalibur COMPLETELY sucks. I'm so desperate for something better that I'll even settle for a marginal improvement in picture quality.
 

Ric Easton

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I asked during the last chat if there was any chance of us getting a new version, since this year was the 25th anniversary and all. They said there were no plans.

I still just can't believe the HD version got the same mis-framed crap. I guess it will be a cold day in Hell before we get any version that is properly framed.
 

DeeF

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I did a comparison of the new HD-DVD and the standard DVD, showing them simultaneously on my monitor. The HD-DVD has been opened up, ever so slightly.
 

Ron-P

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Ron
Just picked it up today, my local BB had only one copy. Can't wait to watch it.
 

Stephen_J_H

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Being cut off mid-forehead is not "proof" of misframing, as others are indicating. I only quote DeeF because his quote is the only one providing any clarity. A director or DOP will have various reasons for framing shots in a certain way. We cannot assume that this is misframed just because tops of heads are lopped off. We're talking about a movie here, not a family portrait.
 

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