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Request: Transformers MOvie (New R1)

Old 11-02-00, 11:49 PM
  #1  
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the title says it all
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00004YA6T/o/qid=973223430/sr=8-1/ref=aps_sr_d_1_1/102-5101585-7324163
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Old 11-03-00, 05:23 PM
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I have this pre-ordered and should be getting it as soon as it comes out. I'll be back next week with a review!

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Old 11-05-00, 06:52 AM
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Okay, first the good news. The film is uncut. Rhino apparently knew how important this was to the fans, so much so, in fact, that they named an entire chapter after the infamous scene (Chapter 11. Swear Word)

The full-frame video isn't anything astounding, but it's certainly no worse than the VHS. A serviceable effort.

As far as extras go, the storyboards included are o.k., though they weren't particularly interesting to me. BUT, the video interview with composer Vince DiCola is very nice. It's about 6 minutes long, IIRC, and it was great to hear him talk about his experiences. I think it was recorded a couple of years ago, as he mentions recently attending what I beleive was Botcon '98, a Transformers convention.

The bad news--and I mean BAD--is the audio. ACK!!!! It's terrible! 5.1 audio my A$$. It's actually 5.0 mono. Each speaker plays a mono version of the sondtrack. That's right -- music, SFX, and dialog are simultaneously played from the front, center, and rear speakers. UGH! To make matters worse, there is no optional 2.0 track, the only option is to have your receiver downconvert it to stereo. Also, if there was ANY subwoofer activity, I failed to hear it. In fact, there is very little bass in the mix at all. Frankly, the sound on my mono VHS copy of this movie sounds better. Even Rhino's poorly done G.I. JOE 5.1 track puts this one to shame. Rhino gets a big whopping "F" in the sound department. Shameful.

If you don't mind a horrible audio mix (a shame for a film with such a great soundtrack), the film may be worth it to you just to see it uncut, and the extras are a nice inclusion.

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Old 11-05-00, 06:13 PM
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This is a big disappointment. When are studios going to start realizing that 5.1 audio doesn't mean just sounds coming out of all 6 speakers? I thought they were remixing the soundtrack, this is really bad news. Rhino sucks.

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Old 11-06-00, 04:12 AM
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The only question I have is which is the better version to own: The Canadian version or the Rhino version?
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Old 11-06-00, 06:45 AM
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Well, I don't have the Canadian version, but someone else said that Rhino's picture quality was slightly better. Still, if the Canadian release has a real 2.0 stereo soundtrack (of which I am unsure), it would have to sound better than Rhino's disc.
If anyone can comment on the audio quality of the Canadian release, I'd appreciate it!
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Old 11-06-00, 12:03 PM
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I didn't have a problem with the audio on the TM DVD. It's merely a 2-channel stereo mix multiplied by 2. This film never had any "bass", even on VHS.

What the audio on this DVD does bring out is the soundtrack, sounds alot better on the RHINO DVD release...the highs are now clear and present.

The audio and video on the DVD is much better than the previous VHS versions IMHO.

I think some people are being way to hard on RHINO. I'm grateful they even bothered releasing this on DVD.

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Old 11-07-00, 05:39 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by Jerry G.:
This film never had any "bass", even on VHS.


I disagree. While the film may not contain any super-low frequency effects (I never expected this film to give my subwoofer a workout), the film's score contains quite a bit of bass which is pathetically thin and weak on the DVD. Check out the percussive bassline notes that play throughout Unicron's Theme for an example of how poor the mid-range bass reproduction of the mix is. One of the best things about this film is Vince DiCola's score, but the DVD makes it sound like a 3rd generation VHS dub.
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Old 11-07-00, 10:00 AM
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Haven't gotten my copy yet.. but personally I'm glad to even see this DVD at all and true transformer fans should feel the same way and think Rhino did a heluva job and was supercool for giving us a movie we love
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Old 11-07-00, 11:08 AM
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quote:
One of the best things about this film is Vince DiCola's score, but the DVD makes it sound like a 3rd generation VHS dub.



With all due respect, trogon.

I'm in complete disagreement with you on this.

Every aspect of this DVD screams improvement.

You are being way to hard..."3rd generation VHS dub"!? OOOoooKaaay.

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Old 11-07-00, 01:04 PM
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I'm glad to hear some positive things about this release. Trogon, thanks for scaring the s*** out of me with your review. It sounds like I have nothing to worry about. Not all of us are nit-picky audiophiles!!

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Old 11-07-00, 02:34 PM
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I'm no "nit-picky audiophile," but I have to agree that the sound on this DVD is VERY disappointing. It does indeed play all the sounds on every speaker. There isn't even any reference to Dolby anywhere on the case (I'm not sure how common this is). I was also hoping for more extras, at least a trailer.

BTW, does anyone else think the back cover looks like it was glued together by a 5-year-old???

[This message has been edited by Johnny Salami (edited November 07, 2000).]
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Old 11-08-00, 12:18 AM
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Well my copy arrived from Amazon.com today and I watched it soon as I got home from work and I thought it was great!

The picture was great, and yeah the sound isn't like "real" surround sound, but it didn't bother me at all. I don't have a super high tech sound system, but movies made for dd or dts 5.1 sound incredible to me on it.. and I thought this one sounded just fine. For me though, in most cases, the music seemed to be louder than the talking and action but people have told me that's because my speakers aren't calibrated and I'm too lazy to figure out how to calibrate them and I'm even more too lazy to actually do it when I learn how

I'd rate this DVD as an 8 on a scale of 1 to 10. If the sound was real DD or DTS 5.1 it would be better, but it's fine for me as is. The video wasn't widescreen but I've been told that it was never shot for widescreen anyway so ya can't hold that agasint em, I'd rather see it full screen than widescreen and stretched/cropped. And maybe a couple more extras would be nice like a trailer, maybe an easter egg with one of the tv episodes or something

One thing I REALLY liked about this DVD was the fact that I didn't see ANY layer change. I really hate it when the dvd changes layers in the middle of a scene.. this one was either on all 1 layer, or they did the change seamlessly somehow, which I thought was great

If you're like me and you used to rush home from school every day to get home in time for Transformers, and you collected the toys and played with em all This DVD is a must-have, period
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Old 11-08-00, 12:34 AM
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I think the final word on the full-frame question was:

The movie was animated at 1.66:1 and matted to 1.85:1 theatrically. The home video release wasn't p&s, but just cropped the sides of the 1.66:1 frame.

I have no idea if that's really accurate, though.

quote:
Originally posted by necros:
The video wasn't widescreen but I've been told that it was never shot for widescreen anyway so ya can't hold that agasint em, I'd rather see it full screen than widescreen and stretched/cropped.




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Old 11-08-00, 06:36 AM
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To everyone who is satisfied with the sound on this DVD, good for you. But I stand by my opinion that the 5.1 track is BAD. Yes, it sounds OK if you downconvert it (though it should have included a seperate 2.0 track so that downconversion wasn't necessary). Yes, technically this movie had no right to be in 5.1 anyway, since that wasn't the original intention of the filmmakers.
---But---
If Rhino is going to include a 5.1 track and hype it as a reason to buy their disc, then I damn well expect a real and passable 5.1 track, which this disc simply does not have.
Sorry if I scared anyone with my review--I merely reviewed the disc Rhino produced. While it may sound OK when downconverted, the "5.1" track is the only one encoded on the disc, so that is the soundtrack I reviewed, and I stand by my statements.
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Old 11-11-00, 04:58 PM
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Wow, I can't believe no one has mentioned the bottom-of-the-basement video quality. I haven't seen the VHS version in over a decade, but I can't imagine it being much better than this DVD. While the luminance detail is pretty high, the chroma resolution is really bad.

There are constant MPEG artifacts. All the crisp super-saturated color (especially reds) are all jaggy and crunchy. And there's horrible image degradation in high-action sequences. When Unicron is devouring the 1st planet in the opening, it's blocky as hell. If anyone has a DVD player than can display the bitrate, I'd be interested in how much of the bandwidth it's using.

I also have to complain about the packaging quality. It looks like a photograph of a 3rd generation laser copy. Really soft, blurry color. I know I shouldn't ask too much from a $15 DVD... but still! I wonder if Rhino did the transfer in-house? Did my disc come out of a bad batch?
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