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Criterion Press Release: World of Wong Kar Wai (Blu-ray) (1 Viewer)

Ronald Epstein

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With his lush and sensual visuals, pitch-perfect soundtracks, and soulful romanticism, Wong Kar Wai has established himself as one of the defining auteurs of contemporary cinema. Joined by such key collaborators as cinematographer Christopher Doyle; editor and production and costume designer William Chang Suk Ping; and actors Tony Leung Chiu Wai and Maggie Cheung Man Yuk, Wong (or WKW, as he is often known) has written and directed films that have enraptured audiences and critics worldwide and inspired countless other filmmakers with their poetic moods and music, narrative and stylistic daring, and potent themes of alienation and memory. Whether they’re tragically romantic, soaked in blood, or quirkily comedic, the seven films collected here are an invitation into the unique and wistful world of a deeply influential artist.

World of Wong Kar Wai

FILMS IN THIS SET
 

Ronald Epstein

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Thank you for supporting HTF when you preorder using the link below. If you are using an adblocker you will not see link. As an Amazon Associate HTF earns from qualifying purchases

 
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titch

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Oh my goodness - Wong Kar Wai has gone all revisionist and changed the colour grading for In The Mood For Love. See the captures over at Beaver. But at least we now we now what has possessed George Lucas and the like: “No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man....I invite the audience to join me on starting afresh, as these are not the same films, and we are no longer the same audience.Ehm....*ducks for cover* :eek:
 

lark144

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Oh my goodness - Wong Kar Wai has gone all revisionist and changed the colour grading for In The Mood For Love. See the captures over at Beaver. But at least we now we now what has possessed George Lucas and the like: “No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man....I invite the audience to join me on starting afresh, as these are not the same films, and we are no longer the same audience.Ehm....*ducks for cover* :eek:
The color in beaver's caps are almost always wrong--for instance, "A Matter of Life and Death" had a greenish cast which was nowhere to be found on the disc--so I will wait until more authoritative sources weigh in before crying foul.
 

Mark VH

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The color in beaver's caps are almost always wrong--for instance, "A Matter of Life and Death" had a greenish cast which was nowhere to be found on the disc--so I will wait until more authoritative sources weigh in before crying foul.

Let's hope so, because egad, that greenish tint looks absolutely AWFUL. And it's not just the caps, as the text indicates that's how the transfer is encoded (even though Tooze talks himself into thinking it looks good, as he will). We know Criterion have gotten fast and loose with greenish tinting in the past, so there's precedent here. Either way, I'll treasure my current ITMFL as I hold onto it for dear life.
 

lark144

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Let's hope so, because egad, that greenish tint looks absolutely AWFUL. And it's not just the caps, as the text indicates that's how the transfer is encoded (even though Tooze talks himself into thinking it looks good, as he will). We know Criterion have gotten fast and loose with greenish tinting in the past, so there's precedent here. Either way, I'll treasure my current ITMFL as I hold onto it for dear life.
If that's the case, it's an excellent reason not to buy the box set & save some money; especially considering there's already a lovely blu-ray of IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE already available.
 

titch

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The color in beaver's caps are almost always wrong--for instance, "A Matter of Life and Death" had a greenish cast which was nowhere to be found on the disc--so I will wait until more authoritative sources weigh in before crying foul.
True. The remastered Chungking Express doesn't look so ghastly in Beaver's screen caps though. I have the original Criterion blu-ray. While everyone gushed and swooned back in 2008, nothing that was mastered then looks gorgeous projected in 2021. My Korean blu ray of Days Of Being Wild looked fairly lacklustre, even back in 2008 and my Artificial Eye blu-ray of Fallen Angels doesn't look so fresh either. I see Amazon is flogging the Kino Lorber Happy Together for $449 used. I'd be more than happy to get rid of mine for half that! I'll be buying the box, of course.
 

lark144

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True. The remastered Chungking Express doesn't look so ghastly in Beaver's screen caps though. I have the original Criterion blu-ray. While everyone gushed and swooned back in 2008, nothing that was mastered then looks gorgeous projected in 2021. My Korean blu ray of Days Of Being Wild looked fairly lacklustre, even back in 2008 and my Artificial Eye blu-ray of Fallen Angels doesn't look so fresh either. I see Amazon is flogging the Kino Lorber Happy Together for $449 used. I'd be more than happy to get rid of mine for half that! I'll be buying the box, of course.
I'm dying to get the box. In particular, for 2046, which I only have on DVD. But I will wait on more authoritative reviews. I don't even read the Beaver anymore, as the quality of his caps seem to be getting worse, to the extent that films he says aren't up to snuff visually, often look a lot better then those he says he likes.

Those Artificial Eye Blu's, (& also the Kino's here in the states) like "Fallen Angel", were lackluster from day one, making the films appear as if they were shot through a moldy fish tank. They certainly didn't look that way in a movie theater. I saw "Days of Living Wild" at the Pagoda in Chinatown, and it was gorgeous, in spite of the stained screen.
 

titch

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Ooops-a-daisy...Dr Bassoon-player over on Blu-ray.com doesn't like the new colour grading on In The Mood For Love. Greenish.
 

lark144

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Ooops-a-daisy...Dr Bassoon-player over on Blu-ray.com doesn't like the new colour grading on In The Mood For Love. Greenish.
Though I usually don't go by screen caps, these look dreadful. The sunset sky at Angkor Wat is bright green. And the good doctor isn't the only one to point this out. I don't trust the Beaver's caps, but people whom I consider authoritative have been complaining about the green cast for over a month now. I was hoping against hope this wasn't the case. Though Wong Kar-Wei has approved these extreme color re-gradings, it's not something I'm going to ever want to watch.
 

titch

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Dear Lord - it sounds like Wong Kar Wai has lost his mind. Not satisfied with turning In The Mood For Love green, he's now gone and cropped/reframed Fallen Angels from 1.85 to 2.35. The review is up on Blu-ray com. This actually might be the first Criterion blu-ray release I don't purchase. I never thought the day would come.
 

Tom Logan

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I'm not finding reviews anywhere for this set. I need to find out just how outraged I should be...

Any links appreciated. :)
 

lark144

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I'm not finding reviews anywhere for this set. I need to find out just how outraged I should be...

Any links appreciated. :)





I mean, this is Dr. Svet, who's not always dependable, but the frame grabs look consistent which much of the recent color 4K restorations coming from L'Immagine Ritrovata, i.e: timings that veer towards yellow-green, for instance, "Juliet of the Spirits" on the Criterion Essential Fellini set, when the original dye transfer prints emphazised bright primaries, especially robust reds, which look anemic & muddy on the Blu-ray. Also, many people on Facebook have been complaining about the greenish cast and odd reframings of key scenes from "In the Mood for Love" for months. You can also try the Criterion Forum.

I'm not especially outraged, Wong-Kong Wei can do what he wants. They're his films, but I'm not buying the box.
 

B-ROLL

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I'm not finding reviews anywhere for this set. I need to find out just how outraged I should be...

Any links appreciated. :)
For what it's worth +the Beaver:



(Happy Together somehow has the same URL as Fallen Angels but can be accessed by going to this new release list)






 
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titch

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The green version of In The Mood For Love is currently streaming on MUBI, so I watched it. I really dislike it, compared to the previous Criterion blu-ray. The amount of noise that has previously been generated on this site when a title gets a rather too generous "teal" grading, would have created an apoplectic thread 100 pages long, if more people here watched non-English language films. Which they should. Where's Haineshisway?

 

Tom Logan

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Thanks for the replies and links! (I promise I did check at bluray.com before posting, but must have hit a wrong page there.)
 

lark144

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The green version of In The Mood For Love is currently streaming on MUBI, so I watched it. I really dislike it, compared to the previous Criterion blu-ray. The amount of noise that has previously been generated on this site when a title gets a rather too generous "teal" grading, would have created an apoplectic thread 100 pages long, if more people here watched non-English language films. Which they should. Where's Haineshisway?

You're a better man than me. I don't think I could make it through five minutes of that ungainly murk. I guess this version of "In the Mood For Love" can go on top of the list of the greatest "latrine-green" films of all time.

As far as the "anti-teal" squad goes, they only seem to complain about movies that more or less look the way they're supposed to, in the 1950's before they faded, whereas "In the Mood for Love" doesn't.
 

Mark VH

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I found this thread on Twitter helpful in understanding the changes in the WKW set: . Sounds like the alterations were very much what the director and DP wanted, for better or worse. I won’t be buying the set because I’ve got the films I want on Blu, but even if I wanted the others it’d be a pretty tough sell.
 

Dave B Ferris

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For the less-principled among us, such as me, Amazon was selling this today for $60-off, not quite but close to the half-off during a B&N sale.
 

titch

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Sounds like one of the most disappointing releases from Criterion since Children Of Paradise. There was great excitement last year, when In The Mood For Love was apparently premiered at Cannes 2020 with Wong Kar Wai in attendance - but NOT ONE REVIEWER said anything about the radical colour changes. Because no one knew better? Because nobody actually attended Cannes 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic?

I have purchased all of Criterion's box sets on the day of release - until this one. Definitely waiting until the price drops substantially. As usual, Criterion have made a beautiful package but they can't do anything to change the masters they're given. Sounds like there are additional mastering problems with the transfers as well as the bizarre colour grading and reframing choices by the director. I'd wager even Arrow wouldn't be able to achieve much more with the same masters in this case (and their Kieslowski Dekalog is an example of how Fidelity In Motion were able to produce a better mastered product than Criterion did for the final discs). In The Mood For Love, Fallen Angels, Happy Together and 2046 have all received lacklustre reviews and I have the previously released first three. So we're getting As Tears Go By, Days Of Being Wild and Chungking Express in improved versions - although these have also some caveats.

I'm not spending $140 + shipping + import duty for three films I would enjoy.
 

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