Punch Drunk Love + Bonus Features = 7.8Gb - Why 2 discs, Columbia!?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by JulianK, Jun 27, 2003.

  1. JulianK

    JulianK Supporting Actor

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    As I suspected, Columbia Tristar's 2-disc release of Punch Drunk Love is a complete con!

    The disc, (which is identified as a Superbit title only by a sticker on the sleeve and by the disc's embedded ID, as if Columbia is suddenly ashamed of the monster they've unleashed), is split across two discs, yet the combined file sizes of the two discs come to less than 8Gb, well within the capability of a single DVD-9.

    So, Columbia, why two discs? Why, if the disc is a Superbit title, isn't ALL the available disc space used for film (only 6Gb is used, and the bitrate averages at 7.58Mb/s)? Wouldn't the film have been improved at all by using the extra three gigabytes? Plenty of space there for a full-bitrate DTS track! Perhaps the Superbit range isn't so dedicated to optimising picture and audio quality as you've led us to believe? [​IMG]

    Alternatively, why didn't you simply move the bonus features onto the first disc, and - here's the rub - pass the savings on to your customers?!

    Well, this griping is all a little tongue-in-cheek, of course, but it does seem like a waste of resources. (Those of you unable to notice the sarcastic tone of this post should note that I have no qualms with the transfer, or with the excellent DTS audio track).

    Perhaps Columbia should have spent the money they'd have saved on marketing this exquisite movie to a wider audience?
     
  2. Doug Schiller

    Doug Schiller Supporting Actor

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    Because of the geek inside me, I always pop DVDs into the DVDRom to look at tech aspects.
    Little things interest me like how MGM smartly(and quietly) uses DVD18 to fit a SE on a single disc, include all the extras without sacrificing bitrate. If only more studios would follow this model instead of dual inventory. They also did this with the first release of Windtalkers.

    You are right about Punch Drunk Love. This is another Panic Room where not even close to the full space is used on the disc.
    The extras could have easily fit on one disc and they could even have had a commentary (PTA seems to be against them all of a sudden).

    But, to keep with the SuperBit marketing gimmick, they have to have the movie only on one disc.

    I seem to be in the minority, with over 500 DVDs in my collection, I would rather have the least amount of discs as possible but studios seem to think the consumer perceives more value.
    I applaud them for keeping the price down but unneeded extra discs are clogging my shelf space (The Others, The Crow, etc.)

    Doug
     
  3. Christian Preischl

    Christian Preischl Screenwriter

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  4. Marc Colella

    Marc Colella Cinematographer

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    Well I have no qualms about the picture and sound quality of Punch-Drunk Love, and I was going to purchase it regardless because the film is brilliant, but...

    I felt for the longest time that SuperBit was merely a marketing ploy and the PDL disc (once again) proves it.

    Not surprising that this is the same studio that made up a fake critic (Dave Manning) and used fake quotes to sell their crappy films.

    I hope members of this forum investigate the advantages of each Superbit release before purchasing them, and are not just purchasing them based on the Superbit moniker.
    There are many quality DVDs from other studios (which exceed the quality of Superbit) that deserve our support.
     
  5. Matt Stone

    Matt Stone Lead Actor

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    I agree in theory...but then again, it's not like this movie was priced insanely above 1-disc standards. One disc or two, it doesn't matter to me, as long as the price is the same.
     
  6. Matt Stone

    Matt Stone Lead Actor

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  7. Doug Schiller

    Doug Schiller Supporting Actor

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    I do beleive that Sony actually encodes their Superbits differently.
    After reading Bjoern's(sp) analysis on his website, there is something to Superbit other than name.
    Saying that, this process could be applied to all their releases and Punch Drunk Love proves that multi discs are not needed for extras.

    Doug
     
  8. Tony Stark

    Tony Stark Stunt Coordinator

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    Is it more cost effective to manufacture and package two discs single layer DVDs than to make and package a single dual layer?

    Hard to believe if you ask me, but I have to ask.
     
  9. Walter Kittel

    Walter Kittel Producer

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    At the risk of thread-crapping...

    I certainly wish that all of the titles in my collection were as 'problematic' as Punch Drunk Love. The point being that as long as the quality is present, the other details are incidental, IMHO.

    - Walter.
     
  10. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Tony, I'd be curious to find out which is cheaper as well. To me, It would actually seem like 2 single layered discs would be cheaper because you can stamp them and you're done. I'm not sure on the dual layer process, but it's probably a bit complex. I would think they still need to stamp both layers and then try to put them together...This sound like a more expensive process than stamping 2 single layers.

    And as far as the Superbit "scam", Superbit claims they are Superbits because they have a higher bit rate than "normal" DVD's. The problem is, their perception of "normal" bit rate is 4-5Mb/sec. And yes, when you compare a Superbit title (at 7Mb/sec) with a title from 1998 (at 4-5Mb/sec) there is a BIG difference. So yes, 7Mb/sec would be "better", but we all know that other studios have been producing 7-9Mb/sec DVD's for a few years now so the whole Superbit theory is somewhat irrelevant at this point.
     
  11. JulianK

    JulianK Supporting Actor

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  12. Russell G

    Russell G Fake Shemp

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    Superbit as a label is supposed to signifie that the transfer for the video and audio had not been compromised to allow for extra features to be included, and that the transfers would use the highest bitrate nesecerray to replicate the uncompromised film image. Hi bitrate dosen't mean better transfer, and different films require different resources to replicate film (look at Robert Harris comments in the Panic Room superbit thread). I'm assume this is the case with other subtle superbits like Adaptation and Panic Room.

    Seeing that PTM overlooked PDL, casing it to be held back so as to complete suplliments, and seeing that the packaging doesn't have a giant "Superbit" banner across the top (like the Charlies Angles, Heavy Metal, etc.), I'd guess that Columbias execs looked at the transfer and decided to call it superbit, seeing as it really is using all the disc space it needs to replicate the directors and film intent. Also, all of the PTA approved DVDs are 2 disk sets with slipcases, and they all look nice on my shelf, and great on my HT, so I'm not complaining.
     
  13. Charlie Essmeier

    Charlie Essmeier Stunt Coordinator

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    I would much prefer that movies with extras come as two disc sets, with the extras entirely on the second disc. That saves me from having to deal with menus and having to "choose" to watch the movie I paid to see. You watch the extras once, but the menus and navigation hassles are with you forever.

    I could easily do with no extras at all about 99% of the time, so if I've got to have them, I'd rather they were on a second disc where I could just ignore them.

    I'd really like to see the studios adopt the system they used to use with laserdiscs. One release with extras, and a cheaper, no frills, movie only version for those of us who just like to watch the films.

    Charlie
     
  14. Christian Preischl

    Christian Preischl Screenwriter

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  15. Bill GrandPre

    Bill GrandPre Cinematographer

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  16. Russell G

    Russell G Fake Shemp

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    I thought that Hard Eight was taken from him and not released in it's original cut. He talks about this in his Boogie Nights commentary, referring to "Hard Eight" by a different title (which escapes my mind right now but I think it was "Sydney"), and refers to the frustration of having the studio interfere with it. It was also released at a time when 2 disc sets were rarer than they are now (A Bugs life for $50 Canadian anyone?, and also wasn't a hit, or a popular independent film (did it even get an award, or anything? I'm positive it didn't play in my town theatrically). All of the above are good reasons as to why this isn't a 2 disc set.
    Is it even still in print? I don't think New Line put it out, but seeing as this came out around the time of the initial "Boogie Nights" disc (also a single dis that got redone into a 2 disc set), I'd bet my hat a re-release would be 2 discs and match the other sets.
    I've never bought "Hard Eight" in hopes of a re-release.

    To get back on topic, as far as superbit is concerned, I never bought a disc because it was superbit,and PDL is only released as superbit. If there was a superbit version, and a Special edition with extras, I'd pick up the special edition, as I like the extras. I'm glad this one is both ,and I think, based on its history, that PTA is to thank for that, as he asked the studio to push back the release so they didn't have to double dip.

    Also, irregardless of bitrate size, Superbit, from what people say on this forum, as a label has a great track record for quality transfers and discs, especially when you put it up against the THX label, which has caused mostly confusion and high expectations (and probably because it can be licensed THx by any studio, all of which have different quality controls, compared to superbit which is an inhouse sony/columbia label.)

    Sorry for the long winded spiel, please correct me on any errors you may have, I'm not an expert, just a passionate fan!


    :b
     
  17. Damin J Toell

    Damin J Toell Producer

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  18. Marc Colella

    Marc Colella Cinematographer

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  19. Damin J Toell

    Damin J Toell Producer

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  20. Shawn_Sek

    Shawn_Sek Stunt Coordinator

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    just a quick note, according to davisdvd.com price drop calender, Hard Eight will drop to 19.95 retail effective AUG 5 for those still holding off on it.
     

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