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Todd Erwin

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Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory finally makes its way to 4K UHD Blu-ray courtesy of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment with an improved 4K transfer.



Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)



Released: 30 Jun 1971
Rated: G
Runtime: 100 min




Director: Mel Stuart
Genre: Family, Fantasy, Musical



Cast: Gene Wilder, Jack Albertson, Peter Ostrum, Roy Kinnear
Writer(s): Roald Dahl (screenplay by), Roald Dahl (book)



Plot: A poor but hopeful boy seeks one of the five coveted golden tickets that will send him on a tour of Willy Wonka's mysterious chocolate factory.



IMDB rating: 7.8
MetaScore: 67





Disc Information



Studio: Warner Brothers
Distributed By: N/A
Video Resolution: 2160p HEVC w/HDR...

Continue reading...


 

James.G

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In the screenshots in M. Enois Duarte's review on HighDefDigest suggest a dramatic shift in framing from the 2009 BD to the current UHD. Do we know what the intended theatrical framing might have been from previous home video releases or is this something that was left up to projectionists depending on how they matted it? How do we know this UHD version is the more correct one?
 

Carlo Medina

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Disclaimer: I know that IMDb is not the end-all, be-all final authority on all things film, and that erroneous details can appear there.

That said, I just happened to be looking at the WW&TCF page after reading about (and see the screen grabs of) the framing issue and noted that under "Alternate Versions" page it says this:

The HD-DVD/Blu-ray transfer uses parts of the full exposed film width (including the space on the left where the soundtrack would go, and more space below the frame) for most of the runtime, even though the framing was composed for the smaller width. As a result, most of the movie is off-center and high in frame now. For sections where this extra width was not used, it's a closer match; two of these, the opening sequence and first Oompa Loompa song, the image is actually windowboxed. The 40th anniversary Blu-ray gift set continued to use this disc; widescreen DVDs, even those included in that set, have been correct.

This exactly describes the differences in M. Enois's page that I'm seeing, It's primarily space on the left and bottom that is removed from the new 4K transfer.

Now either WB was super sneaky and had someone put that in IMDb to justify the new framing (highly doubtful as it's the second item on the page which likely makes it an older comment) or they remedied a known flaw in the previous release. Although we can't see when the comment was input into IMDb, the fact that it mentions an outdated format like HD-DVD gives a little more credence to the belief that this comment was made quite a bit in the past.

Using my own sensibilities as a strictly amateur photographer, looking at the M. Enois screengrabs from top to bottom:
  • In the Wonka tight-framed, crooked elbow shot, Wonka is now dead center on the frame vs. slightly to the right
  • The group shot of the guests has dead space to the left of Veruca reduced and the actors as a group look closer to center-frame than they do in the BD
  • The overall tighter framing on Slugworth serves to bring him closer to the viewer, which IIRC the scene correctly, is meant to give off a menacing feeling
  • The Oompa Loompas is probably the best example of being centered in the frame on the 4K release, vs. having too much dead space on the left side making the group imbalanced towards the right side of the frame of the BD.
Now it is very difficult to judge a film by stills, so when I get my copy I look forward to watching it to see if anything looks odd in full motion. The most damning thing would be if something important to the film were missing due to the tighter/shifted framing. But just judging by those grabs, as someone who has tried to properly frame photographs according to photographic guidelines, the 4K grabs obey the rules of photographic framing closer than the BD grabs do.
 

Robert Harris

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Disclaimer: I know that IMDb is not the end-all, be-all final authority on all things film, and that erroneous details can appear there.

That said, I just happened to be looking at the WW&TCF page after reading about (and see the screen grabs of) the framing issue and noted that under "Alternate Versions" page it says this:



This exactly describes the differences in M. Enois's page that I'm seeing, It's primarily space on the left and bottom that is removed from the new 4K transfer.

Now either WB was super sneaky and had someone put that in IMDb to justify the new framing (highly doubtful as it's the second item on the page which likely makes it an older comment) or they remedied a known flaw in the previous release. Although we can't see when the comment was input into IMDb, the fact that it mentions an outdated format like HD-DVD gives a little more credence to the belief that this comment was made quite a bit in the past.

Using my own sensibilities as a strictly amateur photographer, looking at the M. Enois screengrabs from top to bottom:
  • In the Wonka tight-framed, crooked elbow shot, Wonka is now dead center on the frame vs. slightly to the right
  • The group shot of the guests has dead space to the left of Veruca reduced and the actors as a group look closer to center-frame than they do in the BD
  • The overall tighter framing on Slugworth serves to bring him closer to the viewer, which IIRC the scene correctly, is meant to give off a menacing feeling
  • The Oompa Loompas is probably the best example of being centered in the frame on the 4K release, vs. having too much dead space on the left side making the group imbalanced towards the right side of the frame of the BD.
Now it is very difficult to judge a film by stills, so when I get my copy I look forward to watching it to see if anything looks odd in full motion. The most damning thing would be if something important to the film were missing due to the tighter/shifted framing. But just judging by those grabs, as someone who has tried to properly frame photographs according to photographic guidelines, the 4K grabs obey the rules of photographic framing closer than the BD grabs do.
What you're seeing is basically correct.

However.

Please examine the shot of the front gate of LoompaLand, and you'll see that it doesn't track with the other shots, as several others do not either - basically matching earlier positioning.

In projection, the image is racked into vertical position and left there. Not here.
 

Carlo Medina

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What you're seeing is basically correct.

However.

Please examine the shot of the front gate of LoompaLand, and you'll see that it doesn't track with the other shots, as several others do not either - basically matching earlier positioning.

In projection, the image is racked into vertical position and left there. Not here.
Thanks Robert! Not yet having the disc I can't speak to anything outside of those 4 screen grabs linked to earlier. In your estimation, is this a framing error on WB's part? You've seen more film in your lifetime than I would in several of mine, so I would place a lot of weight on your opinion on this matter.
 

James.G

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Another poster posted this in the RAH thread about this film. I think it helped me understand the framing issues from the previous BD and how the UHD release is probably more like the intended framing than the BD was.

 

Robert Harris

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Thanks Robert! Not yet having the disc I can't speak to anything outside of those 4 screen grabs linked to earlier. In your estimation, is this a framing error on WB's part? You've seen more film in your lifetime than I would in several of mine, so I would place a lot of weight on your opinion on this matter.
Best to go to post 51 in my thread
 

moviebuff75

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Was there a logo at the end originally? The 1978 NBC broadcast has Paramount at the start but nothing at the end. The new version has Paramount at the start but WB at the end.
 

Carlo Medina

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Best to go to post 51 in my thread
Well that video was a little deflating. Granted the picture quality overall does look superior (and one would hope so) in the 4K. So it seems like the choices are to stand pat with the old BD release, which has lesser PQ than the BD and consistently framed incorrectly throughout the entire movie (too much info on the left and bottom which makes for odd framing). Or to buy the new 4K with the increased PQ and intermittent incorrect framing throughout.

Well I'm a big enough fan of this movie that I'll probably still get the new disc.
 

AlexNH

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In the screenshots in M. Enois Duarte's review on HighDefDigest suggest a dramatic shift in framing from the 2009 BD to the current UHD. Do we know what the intended theatrical framing might have been from previous home video releases or is this something that was left up to projectionists depending on how they matted it? How do we know this UHD version is the more correct one?
 

Carlo Medina

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I've made it through to Pure Imagination. In full motion, I have seen nothing that catches my eye with regards to anything untowards with regards to the new framing. If this changes between now and the end of the movie, I'll update my opinion.
 

Todd Erwin

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Apparently, some MA codes for Willy Wonka are redeeming on MA with the wrong version, only offering the HD version on the Movies Anywhere app/service (MA will show 4K/5.1 and "This device does not support 4K playback."), yet the correct version is still going through to retailers like Vudu, Apple TV, etc.
1625592856715.png

Movies Anywhere recommends anyone who has this issue to reach out to Warner at https://digitalsupport.warnerbros.com/hc/en-us/requests/new and be sure to include a copy of your code certificate.

This is the screen you should see if the code redeemed correctly:
1625593164127.png
 

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