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Old 02-07-05, 06:14 PM   #1
dolphinboy
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Would you be upset if a dvd you really wanted was released this way?

From my time on this board, it's always seemed that the most important issue with dvd buyers is that a film is released in its OAR. Am I right or wrong on this?

A small movie just came out with 2 different versions. One is an R-rated version presented in 1.85:1 and another is an unrated version, that states on the cover Original Unrated version, and this version is 4:3.

The company DID NOT bother to put the aspect ratios on the box cover, so the odds are if you bought it, you wouldn't even know there was a widescreen version and a full frame version and I know, generally, people tend to buy unrated versions when given a choice. So, if you bought the unrated version, you probably would assume 4:3 was the OAR.

I e-mailed the company and after quite some time, they told me that the director insisted that the Unrated version be 4:3. But the company insisted that the CORRECT OAR was widescreen. Does that make any sense? Wouldn't a director want to preserve his or her OAR for the dvd release, especially if an R-rated version was being released in widescreen?

I wrote the president of this company and he basically called me a jerk for writing him and sharing my concerns about OAR, that the two version were different, and that the box cover didn't have widescreen or full frame printed anywhere on the box. He told me I was crazy and that dvd viewers wouldn't be upset if a release they wanted was released in this manner.

I told him that he was dead wrong. Am I nuts for thinking this man doesn't seem to know much about what dvd buyers want or is he right? I won't name the film or the company (both are very small), but if a movie that you wanted came out this way, wouldn't you be unhappy or frustrated that an unrated version came out in full frame, an rated version came out in widescreen, that the boxes didn't state WS or FF anywhere at all, the company insisted the director wanted the Unrated version in 4:3 (making me think this was how he originally shot it and wanted it presented), but insisted the widescreen version was the TRUE OAR (making me think they think they'll sell more widescreen copies and are pushing it, even by not being honest with the customers)?

If this were a Star Wars or a Lord of the Rings release, wouldn't people be going nuts if something like that happened?

I'd like to hear your thoughts. Thanks.
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Old 02-07-05, 06:17 PM   #2
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I won't name the film or the company (both are very small)

Why not?
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Old 02-07-05, 06:19 PM   #3
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this is a hotly debated topic (read up on Kubrick's films)... I personally want OAR, even if it isn't what the director "wanted" for home release... I want to see it as it was framed in the theatre. I think you're totally in the green on this... but that's just my opinion.
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Old 02-07-05, 06:19 PM   #4
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aww, come on....tell us the dvd and company....
we are all nosey here.

hell, why not post the email responses you got back as well.... those always make interesting reads.
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Old 02-07-05, 06:24 PM   #5
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I guess I just thought that would be going out of my way to bash a small company and after receiving e-mail from them, I thought that might be perceived as making it personal. I guess I thought people wouldn't care, because it could be any movie and I still think this is a terrible way of releasing a film and that the company president is totally wrong in thinking this wouldn't be a huge issue if this was a major release.

If people want me to name the film and the company, I will.
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Old 02-07-05, 06:30 PM   #6
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The 4:3 unrated version is probably just the 1.85:1 version with open mattes to show the nudity that was masked off before.
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Old 02-07-05, 06:32 PM   #7
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He might be talking about the Shriek Show release of Fulci's Lizard in a Woman's Skin, which is being released this way. The US cut is anamorphic widescreen, and the uncut original italian version is being released full frame. If so, I gather it was largely a question of source materials. Films like this, you frequently have to take what you can get.

If the OP isn't talking about Lizard, then ignore me.
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Old 02-07-05, 06:33 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nightshadebooks
He might be talking about the Shriek Show release of Fulci's Lizard in a Woman's Skin, which is being released this way. The US cut is anamorphic widescreen, and the uncut original italian version is being released full frame. If so, I gather it was largely a question of source materials. Films like this, you frequently have to take what you can get.

If the OP isn't talking about Lizard, then ignore me.
Nope, not Lizard.
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Old 02-07-05, 06:39 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by nightshadebooks
He might be talking about the Shriek Show release of Fulci's Lizard in a Woman's Skin
since Fulci has been in the ground for about 10 years, it might be difficult for him to voice his concerns about what aspect ratio the uncut versions of his films are released in.
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Old 02-07-05, 06:53 PM   #10
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since Fulci has been in the ground for about 10 years, it might be difficult for him to voice his concerns about what aspect ratio the uncut versions of his films are released in.
And on top of that Fulci shot in numerous aspect ratios. He wasn't like Kubrick who mostly kept strictly to 1.33:1 or 1.66:1.
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Old 02-07-05, 06:56 PM   #11
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you should just tell us just in case we want this movie and want to avoid OAR "problems."
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Old 02-07-05, 07:00 PM   #12
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reminds me of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation, and Return of the Living Dead 3 releases. Both "R-rated" versions of both movies are in their corrrect OAR, while their unrated counterparts are Full Frame.
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Old 02-07-05, 07:07 PM   #13
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The thing is 4:3 means pan and scan on some movies, others it's just open matte, and you still don't know what the director actually wanted and why unless the company tells you. Most films come with a pretty good press release and bigger films usually have the OAR listed by the imdb.com or people just post what they know or there are places to go to get these answers. Then you can make your decision based on the real information that is available about which version of a film you buy.

If the director wanted the unrated version to be open matte, why would they matte the r-rated version? I want to see the film the way that it was meant to be seen and I don't want to guess about that and I certainly don't want to have people making a decision to matte a movie just to provide people with the "warm" feeling inside that they are watching widescreen.

Widescreen means nothing to me and black bars are stupid, if they're just put there for the heck of it. Showtime and HBO movies are usually shot in 4:3 and I wouldn't want them matting those films, just to make it widescreen. We'd be losing what the director wanted us to see.

The thing is that the president of this company said to me that I shouldn't be complaining, that I should just pick a version and shut up, and that it didn't matter.

But how I'm seeing the movie means more to me than sound or extras, I don't want to have to guess whether I have the version that is OAR, I want to know, and I think that's something almost everyone else wants. This guy basically said, no one would care. I think he's completely wrong and I can't believe he's the president of a company that might be releasing other films that I might want and has that kind of attitude.
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Old 02-07-05, 07:13 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asianxcore
reminds me of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation, and Return of the Living Dead 3 releases. Both "R-rated" versions of both movies are in their corrrect OAR, while their unrated counterparts are Full Frame.
You see, that's exactly like this situation and I would be so pissed if they did that. It makes no sense to me to offer an unrated version not in OAR.

But the cover of this dvd says something like Original Uncut version, so it's clearly implying that this is how the director wanted the film to be seen, making me even more confused since they claim the R-rated version has the correct OAR.

The movies you mentioned "might" have unrated versions that the studio put out on their own, without the director being involved. I don't know.
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Old 02-07-05, 07:17 PM   #15
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Oh, oh, I know! It's Ken Burns' America Collection, isn't it?
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Old 02-07-05, 07:23 PM   #16
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Oh, oh, I know! It's Ken Burns' America Collection, isn't it?
About your sig, you are so right about Garden State. Total garbage. Kinda with you about Napolean, but only because it's so over-hyped. But the other films were all good or better.

The movie is
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Old 02-07-05, 10:04 PM   #17
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Isn't this the same studio that released super size me, in non-anamorphic, yet most of the supplement were anamorphic?
That president sounds like a loser and should be knocked down a few notches.
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Old 02-07-05, 10:33 PM   #18
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I woudl also disagree that people don't care whether the movie is widescreen or fullscreen. It's my experience that people on both sides of the debate care a good deal. They have their preferences, one way or the other, for a reason. They don't simply take what's offered because it's offered.
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Old 02-07-05, 11:21 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Neitzl
Isn't this the same studio that released super size me, in non-anamorphic, yet most of the supplement were anamorphic?
That president sounds like a loser and should be knocked down a few notches.

YES, the same studio. Hart Sharp Video. And, I am by no means a dvd business know-it-all, but I've never dealt with a company or the president of a company that was so utterly rude, inept, and clueless about what they were doing.

The president of the company made a whole stink about "did I think the president of Fox or Universal would write me personally" (as if that's a fair or reasonable comparison) and then sent me an e-mail offering to refund the money I'd spent if the store wouldn't take the dvd back because the packaging does not state widescreen or full frame anywhere.

Well, I wrote the company a VERY short e-mail last week asking questions about the two different releases and the mis-information about the specs, so that I could avoid wasting my time and money on something that might not be right. I never bought it, he told me how great he was for getting back to me, and he clearly didn't even read what I wrote. He wanted kudos for screwing up the release, skimming my letter, and then telling me I was a dick for trying to get the right info.

I see why the big companies can get away with being rude, but this guy should be going out of his way to help answer questions and get good word of mouth about his company and their releases. I only asked because I wanted to buy it, I just didn't want to drop down $20 for something that wasn't OAR. He basically told me that I shouldn't be concerned and that if I wanted widescreen, buy the rated one, and if I wanted the unrated version, I should be happy with full frame. That totally misses the point and it's not really a fair choice to ask someone buying a dvd.
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Old 02-08-05, 12:57 AM   #20
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The unrated version is full screen so you can see the nekkid bits better.
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Old 02-08-05, 01:26 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShagMan
this is a hotly debated topic (read up on Kubrick's films)... I personally want OAR, even if it isn't what the director "wanted" for home release... I want to see it as it was framed in the theatre. I think you're totally in the green on this... but that's just my opinion.
I agree. I want it the way it was shown in the theaters. They can put everything else on the DVD as an extra.
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Old 02-08-05, 09:14 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dolphinboy
I e-mailed the company and after quite some time, they told me that the director insisted that the Unrated version be 4:3.
I think that tells you everything you need to know. The theatrical release was 1.85:1, but the director preferred a different ratio. I don't see what the big deal is. A DC is a DC, and is going to be in whatever aspect ratio the director wanted for his film. If you have a complaint you should be writing to the director about it as it's his choice. The studio releasing it probably has little choice in the matter.

When they said the correct ratio was 1.85:1, they probably meant that the original theatrical release was 1.85:1 because whichever ratio the filmmaker wants the film to be in is the 'correct ratio.'
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Old 02-08-05, 11:17 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by renaldow
If you have a complaint you should be writing to the director about it as it's his choice. The studio releasing it probably has little choice in the matter.
I doubt the studio has little choice in the matter. It would be the extremely rare case that any studio would give up that kind of power to a director. They can go along with a director's wishes, but the studio nearly always holds the power over what does or does not get released.
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Old 02-08-05, 12:04 PM   #24
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Soooooooooooooo....
where's the email from president?
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Old 02-08-05, 12:42 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by renaldow
I think that tells you everything you need to know. The theatrical release was 1.85:1, but the director preferred a different ratio. I don't see what the big deal is. A DC is a DC, and is going to be in whatever aspect ratio the director wanted for his film. If you have a complaint you should be writing to the director about it as it's his choice. The studio releasing it probably has little choice in the matter.

When they said the correct ratio was 1.85:1, they probably meant that the original theatrical release was 1.85:1 because whichever ratio the filmmaker wants the film to be in is the 'correct ratio.'

If it said DC on the box cover, I think it wouldn't be a problem. I'd be pretty sure that the director really did prefer the 4:3. The reason I wrote them in the first place was only to clear up the confusion and the company didn't seem to know how to answer questions or even understand why I thought the correct OAR was important. With no information to go on, like a comment from the director or something really clear from the studio, something you can usually get or find on "bigger" releases, I just won't spend my money and take a chance. It's their loss for not being able to answer what should be relatively easy questions, because someone there has to have actually had a hand in working on that exact release. They just assumed that I wouldn't care or that it didn't matter. People might be willing to buy 3 copies of Spider-man 2, but this was a small, indie film that was going to be a blind buy. It's too bad that they don't care enough to take aspect ratio questions from their customers seriously.
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