Got fooled by HMV's "collector series se7en

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Chris Parham, Jul 23, 2005.

  1. Chris Parham

    Chris Parham Stunt Coordinator

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    Went into HMV today as I was lured by their One day only buy one get one free coupon offer. They had what appeared to be three different copies of Se7en on the shelves. One was a single disc bare bones edition sporting a DTSes track and a 2.35:1 enhanced aspect ratio. The second was the Platinum edition 2 disc set that, according to the box, sports a remastered 2:40 aspect ratio version of the film with a second disc filled with a bunch of supplemental material. The third version was enclosed in an HMV proprietary sleeve bearing the heading "the collector series". It was not as thick as the New Line Platinum release but to my surprise, the info regarding the sleeve's contents were an exact copy of the New Line release. The HMV disc was priced the same as the single disc ($26.95 CDN) and the New Line release priced at ($44.95).
    Of course when I got the disc home and slid it out of the slaver, I was left holding the single disc version with the same technical specs as the first disc I looked at in the store.
    I guess I'm not sure how I feel about this. On the one hand, I basically got the edition that was worth the lower price. On the other hand, I probably would have sprung for the Platinum if I had known what was inside the version I bought. I kind of made a stupid assumption that HMV somehow was able to get the Platinum series version with all it's supplements into a cheaper (non collector's edition worthy) package and sell it for less. The other disc I picked up was the super duper edition of "Stand by Me" for $37. Thus I got both for $37. I'm pretty sure I would Have taken the platinum edition se7en and thus got both my selections for $45. A crucial factor in whether or not I go back and try to switch these is whether or not the actual transfer for the two releases of Se7en are materially different as the differing aspect ratios on the releases would indicate. Or is this just another case of mislabeled or misrepresentative packaging!!???
     
  2. Andy Kim

    Andy Kim Second Unit

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    Hi Chris,
    I think the single disc version you got was released after the 2 disc Platinum Series version, which studios have been known to do for a number of their titles (Fox more so it seems than other studios though). I would assume then that the single disc version you got is most likely not the flipper version from years ago (that disc came out pretty early in DVD's history and if I remember correctly, the transfer wasn't as good as a result).

    If that's the case, I would think the transfer on both current versions would be the same. I have no idea what that HMV version is but it sounds like a repackaging of the single disc version. It wouldn't be a repackaging of the flipper version because it didn't have DTS-ES back then. But for me, just to be on the safe side, I would return it for the actual New Line single version of the DVD if its the same price.

    I try and stay far away from HMV. I just find them a lot more expensive than Future Shop.

    Andy
     
  3. Chris Parham

    Chris Parham Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the response! Unfortunately, the Platinum series DVD is more expensive and although I probably would have purchased it in hindsight, I am not really keen on going through the hassle of going back to the store and haggling over a switch. I've done searches on various sites and have been unable to confirm that these two discs have the same transfer of the film! I can confirm that the disc that I have is not a flipper and thus is not the original early transfer effort. Can anyone confirm that the transfer on the platinum special edition is the same as the current single disc? If they are then I can live with my purchase.
     
  4. Shad R

    Shad R Supporting Actor

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    Are discs THAT expensive in Canada? I bought the two-discer for $20 at CC.
     
  5. CraigF

    CraigF Cinematographer

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    ^^ No, they're not that expensive. Like Andy said, it would be an exceptionally rare day when I'd buy a DVD at HMV. Even when on sale, their discs are often double what you can get them for elsewhere. You really have to know what you're buying there, I've seen DVDs "on sale" that were superceded by newer versions like 5 years ago, and the newer better version costs far less than what they ask for the old. Most HMVs here are in malls, and you pay for the convenience.

    Re Se7en, I must admit the 2-disc version is not a highly discounted disc here, not that easy to find and I haven't seen it for ages in a local "discount" retailer (Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Future Shop). The 1-disc is easily obtained for US$16 or less. As far as I can tell, the *Canadian* 1-discer does not have dts sound, probably removed by our buddies Alliance Atlantis (as they often do) to make room for the French DD track (assuming the French track is actually not on the 2-discer, my cover doesn't mention it). So, in Canada at least, it appears the 1-discer is not exactly a port of disc 1 from the 2-discer (plain as mud?).
     
  6. Dom

    Dom Stunt Coordinator

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    Off topic, but you weren't tempted to buy one Criterion get one free?

    cheers
     
  7. Miles

    Miles Second Unit

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    Is there a Criterion sale at HMV?
     
  8. Dom

    Dom Stunt Coordinator

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    No criterion sale, but on the past Saturday only you could buy any white sticker DVD and receive one at equal or lesser value free.

    Since all criterions are deemed white sticker, there you go.

    cheers
     
  9. ChristianB

    ChristianB Stunt Coordinator

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    Chris, what's the UPC on the single disc copy of Seven you have?

    -Christian
     
  10. Chris Parham

    Chris Parham Stunt Coordinator

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    The UPC code on HMV's sleeve is 68009 11512 the code on the inside case is 65935 20297.
    UPDATE: I watched the disc last night! It does indeed have a DTS 6.1 Discrete sound track and the transfer is head and shoulder's above the old Laserdisc I was seeking to replace. It was very clear and detailed. I could still see what I think is film grain in some scenes but I'm not exactly a video expert (snob?). IMHO I think this grain added to the gritty overall "look" of this film and drew me in further rather than taking me out of the action. After watching it, I'm pleased with my purchase as it represents an overall significant improvement from my old LD!
    Also, without making anybody wince too much, I didn't consider looking at the Criterion section as I already own the only such title that I want - "Silence of the Lambs"- Which I have purchased from them 3 times, once on LD and twice on DVD. My ex-wife has the LD and first DVD purchase[​IMG] .
    I also agree with assessment of HMV's pricing and normally would not buy there ( I'm less likely to now after this mislabled disc experience), but with two small children in tow, I find that I have less and less time to browse at some of the stores I used to frequent with much better pricing and selection (DVD WAVE and BLOOR STREET VIDEO etc.). I found myself in a mall with a coupon burning a hole in my pocket and my two children sitting in their stroller together quietly for five consecutive minutes. The odds were against me walking out of there without purchasing something[​IMG] !
     
  11. Jeff D Han

    Jeff D Han Supporting Actor

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    Hey Chris-

    the Seven laserdisc- Did you have the movie only version, or the Criterion version? Just curious.

    I just watched my Platinum Series DVD (the 2 disc), and
    the video blows away the laserdisc transfer.

    Does the new single disc DVD have the commentaries that
    are on the Platinum Series 2 disc edition? I thought the
    Fincher, Pitt and Freeman track was pretty good.
     
  12. Chris Parham

    Chris Parham Stunt Coordinator

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    I have the non-criterion Laserdisc which I never had a problem watching on my old 50 inch TV. However once I made the switch to front projection, I found it almost unwatchable a couple of month's ago when I wanted to revisit this title. Since then, I've been on the lookout to upgrade.
    Unfortunately, it appears that the commentaries have been stripped from this release in favour of a French language track. As interesting as they sound, I probably would not have had the time to listen to them. My theater time is restricted to Friday and Saturday nights after the kids are in bed and I would rather spend that time watching a feature than checking out extras, even on a beloved title such as this. I really enjoyed the DTS 6.1 discrete track that was included on this release and found it complemented the film well. However I can't help but feel that it lacked something in the Library scene when the security guard turns on the boom box and the classical music wafts through the rows of books. In my memory of the old LD, this scene was one of the most visceral moments in Home theater - the setting, the music conspired to take you into the calming place that Morgan Freeman's character was seeking refuge in from the world he was trying to escape. I'll never get around to doing an A/B comparison so it may just be the way I remember it and nothing more. Overall, when I revisit this title in the future, there is no question that I will be viewing the DVD version with the DTS track.
     

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