My Secret And Shameful OAR Past...

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Dave Simpson, Jul 8, 2004.

  1. Dave Simpson

    Dave Simpson Second Unit

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    Kindly note: I've enjoyed OAR presentations regularily in my home for better than five years. Those who do not enjoy same, under my roof, are made to understand in an unspoken fashion, that if they don't like it, they may be on their way...

    ...but it wasn't always so. I remember watching Siskel and Ebert many years ago extolling the virtues of wide-screen presentations, and their argument made perfect sense to me at the time. While my VHS purchases were few and far between, the titles that I did buy were always P&S, even if there was a choice between P&S and WS. Only when I boarded the laser-disc train for a very brief period in 1992 (not enough $$$ to buy LDs, clumsy form-factor; bailed after a year. Have no fear, 'tho. I got back into LDs a couple of years ago with a used 704 and AC-3 box [​IMG]), did I succumb to the siren song of wide-screen. Because I knew it was the right thing to do, even though I was having great difficulty getting past the "black bars". My brain told me OAR was correct; my eyes told me different. In the end, getting a DVD player in 1999 put the issue to bed, and in no time flat. I suppose several discs a week, as opposed to an LD once or twice a month several years prior, did the trick.

    My secret OAR shame is that I once purchased Star Trek: First Contact on VHS in WS. I recall watching it and thinking to myself, "I know that I ought to watch WS, but these black bars are just too damn thick..." (ST:FC is 2.35:1). I surreptiously swapped it the next day at the store for a P&S copy :b.
    By the way, I never once purchased a P&S laser-disc, and that P&S tape is long gone. It was the last pan'n'scam I ever bought.
    Anybody else care to confess? Cheers!

    DS.
     
  2. Joe Karlosi

    Joe Karlosi Producer

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    Though it pains me to admit it, I didn't like the "black bars" either way, way, way back when I first ever saw Widescreen. Whenever it first came out on VHS. I recall even going out of my way to give up my letterboxed BEN-HUR for a Foolscreen version! [​IMG]

    I didn't "get it" in the beginning, whenever that was.
    Now I am an OAR fanatic, and have been forever, it seems. I love using the terms "foolscreen" and "pan and scam" today for people who still don't get it. [​IMG]
     
  3. Johnny G

    Johnny G Supporting Actor

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    I too have a confession to make.

    As a teenager, I was in awe of the Mitsubishi 37" TV and in 1993, I sold my 32" Sony Trintron & bought a 46" Rear projection set.

    I was adamant that now I had this big screen, I was gonna fill it and although I hadn't yet bought a Laserdisc player, I vowed that when I did, I would always choose the P&S discs.

    However, by the time I bought a player, a couple of years later, I'd been educated & never bought a single P&S LD.

    I now have a REAL home theater and display my Barco 808s at 98" wide in scope, 86" wide in 16:9 and 74" in 4:3 so I have no problem about one ratio looking bigger than another as the viewing area is constant.
     
  4. Jeff B.

    Jeff B. Stunt Coordinator

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    I have a confession to make.

    I just bought a pan and scam of Full Metal Jacket yesterday. Of course I didn't notice until I had neatly removed all packaging. [​IMG] I doubt they will let me take it back, hopefully they will allow an exchange.

    I'm usually so good about checking and rechecking, but I had 6 movies in my hand so I was really excited.

    BOO Walmart.
     
  5. Rob Lutter

    Rob Lutter Producer

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    Full Metal Jacket is supposed to be full frame, so don't bother exchanging it... Kubrick wanted his movies released to video the same way he saw them through the lens -> in 4:3 ratio (for the most part).
     
  6. Kenneth Cummings

    Kenneth Cummings Supporting Actor

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    When I first started buying dvds, I purchased that Jurassic Park two park that was released to drum up support for Jurassic Park 3. Anyway, I wanted to get it, but we went to Wal-Mart...and you guess it, only Pan and Scam copies. I sadly bought the bad version, but it was for a long time the red headed stepchild of my collection. That was until they released that great four disc box for Jurassic Park that has all three movies in widescreen with a bonus disc. So I gave up my bad copies, pick up the box from Borders, and now enjoy watching dinosaurs eat puny humans all the time. [​IMG]

    And of course, the few VHS titles I did buy were crappy pan and scam, as I didn't find out about Widescreen until watching Empire Strikes Back on Sci-Fi Channel.
     
  7. Matt Czyz

    Matt Czyz Supporting Actor

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    Jeff, FMJ isn't pan and scan, either. It's open matte, so it's just opened up on the top and bottom and the frame.
     
  8. Steve Tannehill

    Steve Tannehill Ambassador

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    I worked for Circuit City and sold DIVX players.

    - Steve
     
  9. Jeff B.

    Jeff B. Stunt Coordinator

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    Ok, because I was wondering on the back it said the usual formatted to fit your screen. But what you are saying is that open matted you actually get more picture? just in the 4:3 aspect ratio?
     
  10. Matt Czyz

    Matt Czyz Supporting Actor

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    Yes. There is more picture at the top and bottom. Do a search for Kubrick and there are pages and pages of discussion about this subject.
     
  11. Eric Portelance

    Eric Portelance Auditioning

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    When we first got our home theatre, my dad thought that he hadn't setup something properly when he first popped in a widescreen DVD. I assured him it was supposed to be that way, but wasn't knowledgable enough at the time to explain why. He insisted it was better to watch it fullscreen, so for quite some time, he always zoomed in on the dvd player, giving everything a grainy, blurred look...not to mention cutting things off on the sides since it was a "fake" pan and scan. I actually remember the day when I forced him to watch a disc that had both P&S and Widescreen in the widescreen format, and he hasn't looked back since.
     
  12. Dave Simpson

    Dave Simpson Second Unit

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    To confess this, Steve, you're clearly a braver man than I'll ever be [​IMG] Cheers!

    DS.
     
  13. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    My eyes! My eyes! [​IMG]

    makes sign of cross with fingers and runs away....

    [​IMG]

    Rummaging my closet for laserdiscs last night, I find I had quite a few P&S discs. Though since LD's were so expensive, and I was still a teen of limited resources when I bought most of them, I purchased a lot used based more on title than format.
     
  14. MikeEckman

    MikeEckman Screenwriter

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    I will still buy the occasional MAR DVD under a couple circumstances:

    1. It's not available in its proper aspect ratio on home video.

    2. Its a film I haven't seen in a long time and just want to see. I figure even if I saw it on TV, it would probably be MAR anyway.

    3. It's cheap. That way if it ever does get re-released in its proper aspect ratio, I can probably unload it on ebay for close to what I paid for it, and not be in the hole much.

    4. This ones a maybe, but most films that fall under the first 3 categories are probably films that I am only familiar with on cable anyway, so since I've never see the proper aspect ratio, I won't really know what I'm missing.

    With that in mind, heres a list (off the top of my head) of films I own that fall under these categories:

    Warlock
    Mr. Mom
    Child's Play
    Midnight Madness
    Toy Soldiers
    Road to Wellville

    I'm sure there might be a couple more, but I can't think of them offhand.
     
  15. Matthew Prince

    Matthew Prince Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm new here [​IMG] But I just wanna say that I think the one of the best things about DVDs (of which there are many) is being able to see films in their original Widescreen. Who came up with that idea should be knighted!

    A perfect example is Die Hard 2. Before the (vanilla Region 2) DVD was out, I always saw the ugly pan n scan TV version. I remember the scene where Bruce W. gets blown up out of the plane. On TV you only see part of the explosion and him flying up to the screen and down again...

    Then when I saw the DVD I was blown away! The same scene had a much more massive and wider explosion on BOTH sides AND Bruce W. clearly screaming from left to right in the speakers!! This was just how it was in the cinema! (The movie was actualy in 2.35:1 Cinemascope, but I NEVER knew until I watched the DVD! - plus I was too young to see it at the cinema :wink[​IMG]

    Also, thanks to widescreen you can see the great '50s and '60s Westerns the way those audiences saw them!

    From then on, I only wanted to watch films in their original widescreen state. But it's still annoying when films are released on DVD on in 4:3 pan n scan, like Biggles: Adventures In Time. A corny movie yes, but it was cheap (UKP £4!) so I bought it.

    But what really upsets me, is that the SAME movie and many others that are in 4:3 on DVD, WILL probably be shown in a basic 16:9 widescreen (1.78:1) format on (UK TV) BBC 1, 2 or Channel 4! [​IMG]

    So I'm saying: If the studio or distributor can't find a decent widescreen print of a movie, why can't they at least re-format it to 16:9 (1.78:1) widescreen for DVD? It benefits all widescreen TVs and plasmas!

    What do you think?




    M Prince

    P.S. Why did '60s - '80s movies show their opening and closing credits in the original widescreen and then revert back to pan n scan on video and network TV versions?
     
  16. Levi

    Levi Agent

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    The last pan'n'scan DVD I've purchased was "The Wraith" from the Wal-Mart bargain bin. I don't mind having this in full-screen because it's a terrible movie to begin with, and frankly I don't care about the director's intent! I only wanted to own it because it was on tv all the time when I was growing up and I used to love it and watch it every time it was on.

    For those of you who aren't familiar with the movie, Charlie Sheen comes back from the dead wearing a black jumpsuit and a black motorcycle helmet, and uses his ghost car to punish the people who murdered him! Kind of like the Crow if the main character had come back as a car instead of a goth.

    Incredibly cheesy, and I doubt it will ever get a loving, anamorphic transfer!

    --LEVI
     
  17. Shawn_Sek

    Shawn_Sek Stunt Coordinator

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    i purposely own 2 copies of Josie And The Pussycats, one widescreen and one full.
     
  18. Rob Willey

    Rob Willey Screenwriter

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    It hardly seems "secret" when you publish it in a public forum. [​IMG]

    Rob
     
  19. Dave Simpson

    Dave Simpson Second Unit

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    All right, then...my hitherto secret shame...Cheers.

    DS.
     
  20. MarkHarrison

    MarkHarrison Supporting Actor

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    I have My Fellow Americans in P&S. I'll gladly exchange it if a widescreen version ever gets released. But I don't really see that happening (which is the only reason I got the P&S version). Also, I don't regret buying the P&S version and would do so again. I enjoy the movie too much to not buy it. And in this kind of movie, I doubt I'm missing anything really important from the 1:85 version.

    Other than that, I don't have any P&S in my collection (not counting the obvious sets that offer both formats in one package).
     

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