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Legend of Zu DVD Review - a new HK DVD reference standard

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Legend of Zu DVD Review - a new HK DVD reference standard

Old 11-07-01, 01:53 PM
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Legend of Zu DVD Review - a new HK DVD reference standard

I have not seen any reviews posted of the new Tsui Hark movie The Legend of Zu DVD, so let me give my thoughts on this DVD here. The anamorphic widescreen picture quality is top notch and probably the best I've seen from any HK DVD. I would say that this transfer can compete with some of the best reference picture quality of American film transfers. Tsui Hark uses many different color and tint filters to film this movie and the DVD renders all the colors beautifully. Edge enhancement is very minimal if any, and are not noticeable on my widescreen TV. For a film that only played in Hong Kong up to just a couple of months ago, I did notice some occasional minor print flaws of nicks and scratches. Though they are hardly noticeable. Black level is deep and solid. The audio on this DVD is also the best I've heard from any Hong Kong DVD. The Cantonese soundtrack is in DTS and DD. Mandarin is in DD only. I only listened to the DTS soundtrack in my initial pass at this DVD. All speaker channels were extremely active and there are excellent LFE bass encoded in this DTS track. I have not checked out the standard extras that you would expect on this DVD like a "Making of ," trailers, and cast and crew biography and story synapsis. Another quibble I have with the DVD is that the Chinese subtitles are missing for some of the dialogs. I would say that they're missing about 20%. This is a common fault that I've often seen in HK DVD's. English subtitles are also provided but I did not have a chance to check if there are the same problems as with the Chinese subtitles.

As for the movie itself, the story is pretty non-sensible. I know that this is suppose to be a fairy tale-like legend but I felt the script should at least provide some background or motivation for this standard struggle between good and evil forces. Don't expect good acting from the always wooden Ekin Cheng, Cecilia Cheung and Louis Koo. But they do make good looking puppets for Tsui Hark's over the top action sequences and overly used but excellent CGI effects. This movie could have been made better had it used the CGI in appropriate proportions and focused in more on characters and story. Same old, same old with most Tsui Hark movies.

Overall I recommend this DVD if you're looking for a new reference standard in sound and picture if you can overlook the weaknesses in the one-dimensional characters and CGI's that overshadow the importance of any coherence in the story.
Old 11-07-01, 02:16 PM
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The only problem that makes this DVD less than perfect is the microscopic flat subtitles.

I just watched this on a 32" and from six feet away it really was a strain.

Excellent production though.
Old 11-07-01, 08:39 PM
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There are definitely a few subtitles missing on the English track. I noticed a few scenes:

1) part where insomnia is trapped by Sammo and Red (at the very begginning of the movie and right after the scene where Red and King Sky fight each other)

2) part where King Sky is in the lake, saving Enigma, and Sammo contacts him.

I remember there are other scenes, but these two are the most prominent ones.
Old 11-07-01, 10:37 PM
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Have this on order from DDDHouse and cant wait to see this. I did though watch the new Jackie Chan movie "The Accidental Spy" tonight and was floored by the pristine transfer and mesmerizing DTS track. This disc has a lot going for it, a very detailed extremely sharp print, and a DTS track that wraps the film's incredible soundtrack and fantastic score all over the soundfield, including numerous sounds produced inbetween the two rear channels, anyone that has a receiver that replicate 6.1 soundmix - I am sure this disc wont disappoint. Having been so impressed by this disc makes me very excited about "Legend of Zu" playing on my home theatre system!
Old 11-08-01, 01:48 AM
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movie is so so

The dvd is awesome, but I guess it just wasn't me, I was about to return my copy and get another one, because the subs disappeared for a good couple of scenes, but heck, the dvd was so cheap at around 15 bucks, who cares. it's all eye candy anyway.
Old 11-08-01, 04:28 AM
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Originally posted by Giles
Have this on order from DDDHouse and cant wait to see this. I did though watch the new Jackie Chan movie "The Accidental Spy" tonight and was floored by the pristine transfer and mesmerizing DTS track. This disc has a lot going for it, a very detailed extremely sharp print, and a DTS track that wraps the film's incredible soundtrack and fantastic score all over the soundfield, including numerous sounds produced inbetween the two rear channels, anyone that has a receiver that replicate 6.1 soundmix - I am sure this disc wont disappoint. Having been so impressed by this disc makes me very excited about "Legend of Zu" playing on my home theatre system!
Sadly you are mistaken by Accidental spy. The transfer is less than perfect. I watched the film on a 4:3 21" and seemed very reasonable. Upgrading to a 28" widescreen the transfer was below average IMO alot of edge enhancements, colour bleeds and shadow detail seemed low. If you want to compare good transfers... look at Fighting for Love, the transfer on that for a non-anomorphic film is very good (for Hong Kong).
Old 11-15-01, 10:20 AM
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Is this film scheduled for an American release? The reason I ask is that the Weinstein's (Miramax) are producers of the film. Having just watched around 10 minutes of this movie last night before heading off to work, my jaw was on the floor. Visually stunning and a very aggressive DTS soundtrack that beats everyother HK DVD to the ground - sensory overload that screams for a huge screen, can't wait to sit down and watch the whole movie.
Old 11-15-01, 10:35 AM
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Originally posted by Giles
Is this film scheduled for an American release? The reason I ask is that the Weinstein's (Miramax) are producers of the film.
Yes, Disney owns the rights. They came down on HKFlix for being a US seller, and selling it in the US.

From HKFlix:

URGENT NOTE: According to Disney, who claims exclusive North American distribution rights to this film, it is a violation of United States law to sell this title in North America (USA, Canada, and Mexico). Any North America-based competitors of ours selling this title within North America are doing so in violation of U.S. law. We apologize for any inconvenience, and we thank you in advance for your continued support of HKFlix.com.
Luckily mine shipped before they got in trouble.
Old 11-15-01, 05:32 PM
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Originally posted by Giles
Is this film scheduled for an American release? The reason I ask is that the Weinstein's (Miramax) are producers of the film. Having just watched around 10 minutes of this movie last night before heading off to work, my jaw was on the floor. Visually stunning and a very aggressive DTS soundtrack that beats everyother HK DVD to the ground - sensory overload that screams for a huge screen, can't wait to sit down and watch the whole movie.
I heard rumours that the film was so badly done that Miramax is trying to get out of the deal. I really doubt if it'll have a wide release. Frankly, it's a mess; rushed out hoping to become the next CTHD.
Old 11-15-01, 06:34 PM
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The film is pretty bad. After watching it the first time, I thought it looked fantastic but had obvious story problems. When you see it again, you start falling asleep. Or at least I did. There are no characters in this film, and most of it consists of people flying around and throwing energy blasts at each other. It will stand as a hallmark film in the use of CG to create a fantasy world, but that's about it. I was tremendously disappointed by Legend of Zu. The film tanked massively, and Harvey Scissorhands can tamper with this film all he wants, but he won't make it any better, unfortunately.
Old 11-15-01, 09:10 PM
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Possibly a dub could be fun
Old 05-22-04, 10:25 AM
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Originally posted by sexygal910
There are definitely a few subtitles missing on the English track. I noticed a few scenes:

1) part where insomnia is trapped by Sammo and Red (at the very begginning of the movie and right after the scene where Red and King Sky fight each other)

2) part where King Sky is in the lake, saving Enigma, and Sammo contacts him.

I remember there are other scenes, but these two are the most prominent ones.
I just got mine (big Ziyi fan) and watched it yesterday. The english subs are missing in these scenes. Anyone have a translation? Or know a site where I can get one?
Thanks.

As far as the movie goes. I dug it. It sucked that Zi yi was hardly in it, but I still liked the movie. It might be because I've read so many reviews and comments on it I knew what to expect going in.
Old 05-22-04, 10:32 AM
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Wow, that was quite a bump!

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