Von Trier's THE KINGDOM (released, at long last, on 11/8/05)

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Rain, Feb 14, 2002.

  1. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    I just came back from my local Virgin Megastore where I noticed they had "The Kingdom" listed as an upcoming release on March 12.

    Naturally, I enquire further, thinking it was likely some other film I've never heard of by that title. However, I was assured that this is the Von Trier mini-series (original title: Riget) and it will be a 2 disc set. I peeked at the computer and it did indicate Lars Von Trier.

    Unfortunately, the fellow there could not give me any other details, even which studio was releasing this. I can't find a damn thing on the internet either.

    How did this one slip by my radar?

    Does anyone have any further details on this?

    Barring any unforseen circumstances, I can't see any reason why I wouldn't pick this one up (unless of course Fox Lorber is responsible).
     
  2. Gabe D

    Gabe D Cinematographer

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    I'm surprised this is coming so soon. I expected it would be released to coincide with the new Stephen King/ABC series next season.
     
  3. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    Now I'm totally confused. How does Stephen King have anything to do with this film? Or is it being remade?
     
  4. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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    It's being remade, Rain.
     
  5. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    Well, I will employ my usual strategy involving remakes: I will shut my eyes and pretend it doesn't exist. [​IMG]
    You know, something else occurs to me about The Kingdom.
    If I do pick up this DVD, having never seen the film, how will I be able to tell how good the DVD actually is? I mean, as I understand it, this film went through quite a bit of "beating" to get it to look kind of rough. Hmmmm....
     
  6. Peter Apruzzese

    Peter Apruzzese Producer

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  7. Artur Meinild

    Artur Meinild Screenwriter

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    I'm very interested in getting this title on DVD also... I think von Triers Riget is one of the best horror series of all time! If anybody has further details, please share! [​IMG]
     
  8. Bjorn Olav Nyberg

    Bjorn Olav Nyberg Supporting Actor

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  9. Bill McA

    Bill McA Producer

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    I love this film (well, TV series actually) as well as Riget II.

    I saw this theatrically and owned the US LD box set.

    The film does indeed have a murky, grainy Dogma 95 look to it, as well as a desaturated brownish color scheme.

    A definite must-buy if this release date proves to be true!
     
  10. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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    Aww, Bjørn, it isn't all that scary. Parts of it are quite funny.

    I saw it on laserdisc; the image was grainy and the colors were washed out, and that's how I expect it will look on DVD. Somehow it seemed appropriate.

    I assume this DVD (if it indeed arrives) will only contain part 1 -- which would be fine with me, since I found part 2 somewhat disappointing.

    M.
     
  11. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    Unfortunately, with there being no news of this seemingly anywhere else, I'm thinking it's probably too good to be true and Virgin has made some sort of error.
     
  12. Julian Lalor

    Julian Lalor Supporting Actor

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    Well, www.absound.ca have it available for order. It's A Canada only release, from Seville.
     
  13. Bjorn Olav Nyberg

    Bjorn Olav Nyberg Supporting Actor

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  14. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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    I don't remember anything goopier than an extreme episode of The X-Files. And as I recall, the creepiest parts are things you don't actually see but that go to work on your imagination.
    Come to think of it, the ending of part 1 was a bit of a shocker. [​IMG]
    M.
     
  15. Mark McLeod

    Mark McLeod Second Unit

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    It is indeed a Canadian release from Seville. I've had the press release for a month or so.

    Here it is.

    THE KINGDOM

    DVD – Special 2 Disc Set

    “Like ER on Acid”

    STREET DATE:03/12/02

    THRILLER

    265 min

    1994

    RATED:14A

    SYNOPSIS:

    Something is rotten in “The Kingdom” in Denmark...

    THE KINGDOM’s chief of staff begins morning meetings with a life-affirming group song while doctors run a black-market supply operation in the basement and entertain themselves by initiating new brothers into their secret Masonic society, hunting down white lab rats, transplanting and re-transplanting livers into their own bodies and practicing voodoo on their colleagues. This is a world where the ambulances drive themselves, medical students put body parts from the morgue to outlandish uses and patients conjure up long-suffering ghosts in the middle of the night.

    Have we entered ER on acid? Have the characters from TWIN PEAKS taken over CHICAGO HOPE? No. We have been admitted into THE KINGDOM, Copenhagen’s vast high-tech medical establishment -- a film experience in the spirit of Robert Altman’s MASH and Paddy Chayefsky’s THE HOSPITAL.

    THE KINGDOM is a fantastic, surreal tour de force from master director Lars von Trier (DANCER IN THE DARK, BREAKING THE WAVES), who takes us on a bizarre excursion through a medical institution that is meant to embody the height of reason, but where nothing reasonable ever happens.

    FEATURING:

    Udo Kier End of Days, Armageddon, Shadow of the Vampire

    A film by Lars Von Trier (Dancer in the Dark, Breaking the Waves, Europa)

    DVD FEATURES:

    ·Lars Von Trier Biography and transcript of interview about “The Kingdom”

    ·Interactive Menus

    ·Scene Selection

    Hope this is confirmation enough. I'll see if I can get any more information out of my contact at Seville.

    Mark
     
  16. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    Thank you very much, Julian and Mark for finally having some actual info.
    However, based on those specs, I have two immediate concerns:
    - The running time listed is 15min short of what www.imdb.com indicates. Any idea about this?
    - I've heard less than stellar things about Seville's DVDs.
     
  17. Mark McLeod

    Mark McLeod Second Unit

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  18. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    Thanks, Mark.

    Unless I hear that the missing 15 minutes is censored or altered footage, I will likely pick this one up.

    If you manage to talk to your guy at Seville, maybe ask if the DVD presentation will be as originally aired--5 episodes. I'm a bit worried as dispensing with the opening/closing titles on each would likely account for the missing 15 minutes.
     
  19. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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  20. Aaron Reynolds

    Aaron Reynolds Screenwriter

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    I have both the domestic (US) LD and the Japanese one of the first season of Riget. The domestic one is significantly less sharp than the Japanese, and also cropped slightly. Much worse, though, is that it has smeary artifacting and is slightly shorter and higher in pitch than the Japanese one. The US LD appears to have been transferred from UK video -- the subtitles are filled with Brit slang, and the smearing and pitch change seem to me like PAL speedup combined with PAL to NTSC video transfer.
    The Japanese LD, however, is in Dutch with Japanese subtitles. But DAMN does it ever look good.
    Wanna hear something awful? I only have the Japanese LD of season 2, and I don't understand either Dutch or Japanese. I don't think that there ever was a domestic LD of season 2, though.
    Anyhow, I was just thinking that if it is 15 minutes shorter, that's probably because the film to video transfer is the same one on the LD, which appears to have been made for UK TV or video. So, the good news is that nothing is cut, if that is the case.
    Also, I never noticed that the transfer of the US LD was poor until I saw the Japanese LD...Riget is all weird looking and smeary anyways. [​IMG]
    BTW, the Japanese LD box sets were $12 each at CDJapan a bit ago.
     

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