Fox, THX, Lucasfilm--Unanswered questions regarding Star Wars on DVD

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Grant H, Dec 30, 2004.

  1. Grant H

    Grant H Cinematographer

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    If anyone from the sudios is reading, I sincerely hope one day the problems with the Star Wars Trilogy on DVD will be addressed.

    I must say I was surprised to not even get a courtesy response to my letters from THX, Lucasfilm, or Fox.

    While the flipped surround music channels on ANH were addressed by Lucasfilm as "a deliberate creative decision", a response neither I or many of the fans believe (especially given the fact the sequels do not suffer the same fate) , there are other issues that were never addressed at all:

    The drowned music cues (most notable during the Battle of Yavin)that are NOT drowned out in the Spanish track. If a creative decision, why is this so? ROTJ suffers from some instances of buried score as well. The famous opening music in Star Wars during the Tantive IV sequence with the Star Destroyer flying overhead, also buried.

    The generally poor, uneven quality of the dialogue elements in ANH. Notably worse in quality than that of the SE releases, even the DD 5.1 laserdiscs. While it's understandable the sound on an older film will never sound perfect, I believe this to be the worst mix ever created for home video. I might not be so harsh if at least the music had been presented correctly.

    Perhaps most amazingly overlooked are the video problems with the set:

    Amazingly never addressed, a shot from ANH that is actually Black and White, not color! A wider shot of the Millenium Falcon guarded in the Death Star hangar is devoid of any color, quite noticeable when the shot changes to a closer shot.

    Then, there are a myriad of problems with FX coloring, likely artifacts of the Lowry restoration process, most notably lightsaber color problems, but those are by no means the only problems. Note the inconsistency in the colors of explosions. Even on Hoth in ESB, flames are pink from probes entering the atmosphere one second and orange the next.

    These last points are likely things ILM had no time to touch-up for this rushed release, but the other problems should NEVER have happened.

    I'm offended that the companies involved effectively pulled one over on the fans and the general public by refusing to even admit glaring problems. It bothers me that people paid good money for a flawed, unfinished release. A shiny new car with a lot of mechanical problems may be pretty, but it still has problems. That's how I view this set. My only hope is that all problems will be addressed in the next release of these films and they will finally be made available to home viewers in the highest quality possible. It's frustrating to have to pay for something again just to get it the way it should have been the first time. It isn't the consumers fault that Lucasfilm waited so long to begin properly preparing the films for a DVD release. It was poor planning or a last-minute change-of-mind at the consumers' expense. Tell anyone the "truth" that they didn't have time to do this or that and they'll look at you strange and say "They had plenty of time as far as I'm concerned."

    I would have much rather the powers that be had admitted to at least some of the errors and taken steps to correct them as studios like Universal have done in the past. I know THX was supposedly looking into some issues, but no news ever came out of that.

    In closing, should I really have to play the Star Wars DVD synced to the Special Edition Laserdisc to get the most out of the film?
     
  2. Nigel McN

    Nigel McN Supporting Actor

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    yeah it is funny how the fans can find all these errors in the set that get past the people at lowry digital and lucasfilm, I think it is someone on this forum who has Lowering Digital, or similar as their sig image recently. Another error I saw recently was that a reframed imaged showed that the Wampas arm ended early in shot now.
     
  3. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Beating a dead horse, I'll say once again that this was a HUGE missed opportunity for the seamless-branching feature. The DVDs SHOULD have included the ORIGINAL versions, the 1997 reissue special editions, and these so-called "final" versions. I'll watch my pan & scan, time-compressed CED videodiscs of the original trilogy before I buy these new bastardized versions.
    I find the issues with the sound mix hilarious, these problems wouldn't have existed if they'd just included the original untampered soundtrack!
     
  4. Nigel McN

    Nigel McN Supporting Actor

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    Yeah but someone has to beat it.
     
  5. Bryan Ri

    Bryan Ri Screenwriter

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    Well said, Grant
     
  6. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    well, people asked for a 'just to hold us over' release, and thats what they got.
    1/2 sensational (the image-for the most part- and the bonus material) and 1/2 crap (the audio mix, the absence/dismissal of the original theatrical versions of the films).


    really no point in expressing any displeasure about this release that i can see.
    fans of the SEs usually use "either accept it or don't. it is what it is, not what you want it to be", and seems to me that philosophy would apply to what is sure to be only the first release of the films on a post VHS/LD format.
    Lucas will continue to make changes to the films in future editions and that will include addressing the 'creative decisions'(quality control oversights) that have many fuming now.
    hell, by ignoring a few goofs now, he's made sure that the future corrected versions (creative decisions v.04) will have some cachet, even if he doesn't dramatically improve the other areas of the package (that he already got quite right).
     
  7. Glenn Overholt

    Glenn Overholt Producer

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    Funny, all of the fans that I knew expected the sequels to come out after ep3. I didn't hear thousands of voices screaming (for that)!

    Yes, you can say that the dead horse has been beaten to death, but the horse is still in the building. No one has carted it off to the glue factory for "reprocessing."

    Furthermore, there aren't any flies (the press) anywhere around. You'd think that by now at least one of the flies would have landed on it. Are they all - chicken, stupid, ignorant, etc, etc, - or know something that we don't?

    Glenn
     
  8. Grant H

    Grant H Cinematographer

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    I cringed a bit that Entertainment Weekly named it the Best DVD release of the year.
     

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