Go Back  DVD Talk Forum > DVD Discussions > International DVD Talk
Reload this Page >

Isn't It A Shame That Asian Films Get The Best DVD Treatment Outside Their Countries?

International DVD Talk Intl. DVDs, Region Free Players, RCE, Hong Kong DVDs & More

Isn't It A Shame That Asian Films Get The Best DVD Treatment Outside Their Countries?

Old 06-10-02, 05:00 AM
  #1  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Taiwan
Posts: 75
Isn't It A Shame That Asian Films Get The Best DVD Treatment Outside Their Countries?

I think it's ironic and a real SHAME that Asian films get the best DVD treatment outside of their countries of origin. One would think that the best place to purchase In The Mood For Love is Hong Kong. But it turns out that the US Criterion edition is far superior. Dittor for Battle Royale. Who would've thought that the best version of this Japanese film is the UK Region 0 one featuring progressive scan?
jeffhhsu is offline  
Old 06-10-02, 05:10 AM
  #2  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 23,460
Well, I thought the French DVD of In the Mood for Love was stacked... the HK version was put out by Mei Ah before they had a restructuring... if Mei Ah put it out today, it would probably be loaded with an anamorphic transfer and a bunch of extras. HK DVD publishers are getting better at it, but their lack of quality is due to many factors. One being money. These DVDs are cheap in order to compete with bootlegs which are a huge problem over there. Since they are so cheap, the production costs can't go too high. Another reason is the bootleg factor is causing them to have to rush DVDs out the door to beat the bootleg product to the street. Movies hit DVD just a month or two after their theater run usually. Quality is improving in HK though and I've been more than happy with most of my HK DVDs. As for Battle Royale, the Japanese disc is actually the best as it includes extra footage and (afaik) has a superior anamorphic print to the UK disc. No subtitles though, but not a problem if you're from Japan. Also, from what I've read, the Region 3 HK version of Battle Royale - while not anamorphic - has a little bit better transfer than the UK disc. I have the Region 3 version and I'm really happy with it. Japan makes excellent DVDs though, but they cost between 35 and 60 bucks US. Your comments seem out of place amongst a sea of criticism for US distributors who butcher and dub Asian films. Sure, they give them good transfers, but what does that matter when the films are ruined?
Trigger is offline  
Old 06-10-02, 09:19 AM
  #3  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Taiwan
Posts: 75
Trigger, your points are well taken

And I appreciate your input. And I do agree that a number of Asian films have been "butchered" by US distributers, Jackie Chan's comes to mind.
But one thing that is of utmost importance to me and to an average DVD joe when watching foreign films on DVD is that they've gotta have subtitles in a language that I know. Otherwise, the DVD, regardless of its pristines print and sonic quality, is no good to me. Agree? Also, it's gotta be NTSC. Not PAL and not SECAM; I just don't have the gadgets or whatever it takes to do the necessary conversion. Hence, I would purchase UK's Region 0 of Battle Royale instead of JPN's and choose Criterion's In the Mood over France's.
I believe we're thinking of different titles when we posted the last two pieces. The movies that I named were just off the top of my head; I guess I didn't bother to do much background check beforehand. I admit, I'm not as well-informed and up on all the latest releases as many of you. But take Ang Lee for instance. His Eat Drink has just been released in the US. I mean, Ang Lee is practically a national hero here in Taiwan. Why can't TAiwanese folks put out respectable DVD editions of his works(those that he made before he went to the US)? That basically sums up my sentiments regarding Asians films.

Last edited by jeffhhsu; 06-10-02 at 09:25 AM.
jeffhhsu is offline  
Old 06-10-02, 09:31 AM
  #4  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 23,460
Another thing to note is that alot of DVDs from Hong Kong - in fact most - come with an optional Mandarin dub. I don't know if you speak it or just read it. What companies operate out of Taiwan? Tung Ah - the Mei Ah subsidiary is the only one I can think of at the moment... and I'm not even sure about that one. I think Mega Star does a good job, Mei Ah has been doing a better job of it and they will most likely continue to improve. Universe has always been pretty consistent with better than average DVDs for cheap. I can see what you're saying about subtitles though because English subs that are mastered in China are always going to have spelling and grammar errors wheras English subs done in the US are going to make much more sense in general. Anyway - I think my original comment about time constraints (trying to beat the bootleggers to the streets) and budget constraints (keeping prices low to compete with bootlegs) are what keep Asia from putting out top-notch DVDs all the time. Other countries don't have this problem quite as rampant as Hong Kong does.
Trigger is offline  
Old 06-10-02, 10:57 AM
  #5  
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 220
I think my original comment about time constraints (trying to beat the bootleggers to the streets) and budget constraints (keeping prices low to compete with bootlegs) are what keep Asia from putting out top-notch DVDs all the time
Trigger,
this statement is not quite accurate...
because Mei Ah now, and Chinastar before them, are releasing excellent anamoprhic DVDs. And Universe inconsistently does release some very nice anamorphic DVDs.

So there seems to be no real reason, other than not caring about the product, to release subpar DVDs.
And I am not talking about extras.. just the movie itself is my concern.


J.T.
jtkv is offline  
Old 06-10-02, 11:30 AM
  #6  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 23,460
Originally posted by jtkv


Trigger,
this statement is not quite accurate...
because Mei Ah now, and Chinastar before them, are releasing excellent anamoprhic DVDs. And Universe inconsistently does release some very nice anamorphic DVDs.

So there seems to be no real reason, other than not caring about the product, to release subpar DVDs.
And I am not talking about extras.. just the movie itself is my concern.


J.T.
Mei Ah (and CHina Star before them) may be releasing excellent transfers, but there's always something wrong with each DVD. Some DVDs it's subtitle problems, others it's a bad DTS track, and others it's made into a flipper. Find me a Mei Ah DVD that is flawless. These tiny errors here and there are because the DVDs are rushed out the door. Instead of taking months to produce a DVD, it takes weeks. Universe releases may be inconsistent in their use of Anamorphic vs non-anamorphic, but at least their releases are above average transfers and decent sound for the most part. I don't see how you figure a company releases a bad product because it doesn't care about it. They care about money, right? If they released junk because they didn't care, then nobody would buy it and they wouldn't make any money. Their product has to be at least better than the bootlegs that float around town for half the price. Othewise they are wasting their time and money. What you're saying kinda escapes logic a bit. Even if they were releasing a bad movie they didn't like to customers they hated, they would still try to make something worth buying to the best of their abilities so they can make money. The DVDs coming out of HK lately are most certainly above par for HK and I hope the trend continues. Perhaps some DVDs will even see a re-release.
Trigger is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.