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Discussion Starter #121

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I just watched Next 2007 with Nick Cage. I have an HD-A1 to a JVC HD250 on a 140" scope screen and I was disappointed in the quality. Lots of jaggies and very digital looking. I just got my system up and running so I might have not had something set just right. Anybody else think this looked a little disappointing?

It looked fine on my 47" 1080p LCD last time I saw it, but dude, you've got a 140" scope screen? That's sick!
Other than the obvious digital boosting/manipulation of the color palette for the flick to look a little too OTT colorful (and Nic Cage's hair... seriously, what is wrong with this guy's weave?) the movie looks fine on regular HDTV's. On a screen as large as yours though though even the smallest digital errors will be amplified tenfold, especially since you're feeding a 1080i signal from an HD-1 player. Throw in a reference HD-DVD to see if it gives you jaggies/errors, and if that's the case then your JVC projector or HD-DVD player aren't communication properly and there's bad de-interlacing going on somewhere. Try a reference HD-DVD to eliminate that as a problem. Let us know how it goes.
 

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Originally Posted by dad1153 /forum/post/20144369


Saw FORBIDDEN PLANET (1956) on HD-DVD and WOW!, I really liked it.

I just picked this up used off Amazon and have to agree. It's been so long since I had last watched this movie, it was almost like seeing it for the first time. I mostly remember watching it on a B&W TV as a kid, though I'm sure I have seen it in color on a small screen also. Seeing it now in HD on a widescreen let me finally appreciate what an excellent job the film makers did in 1956. These were some great special effects! Color and clarity on this transfer are quite good.

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Decent high-def picture and, for '56, the SFX work and production values are off-the-charts retro cool. My HD-DVD copy of "FB" has a glitch in which the picture stutters and freezes around Chapters 10/11 (when Robbit zaps the monkey at the kitchen in Pidgeon's futuristic house) on my three players. I can only watch the rest of the movie that comes after the 'monkey zap' by skipping to a chapter after and slowly rewinding before it freezes again. Does anybody else have this problem? If it's widespread then it's an authoring mistake that affects all copies. If it isn't then my three HD-DVD compatible devices really, really hate me.

No glitches with mine, thankfully. I don't know a thing about how optical discs are produced commercially but barring scratches and dirt as a cause of freezes on an HD DVD disc, I have to believe some of these are glitches in the process, apparently plaguing entire runs of some of these discs.


I recently ran into this problem with Mutiny On The Bounty (also a high WOW factor!) and went through four discs before I got one that doesn't freeze on my HD-A2, however, they all would play without freezing on an XBox 360 add-on. Different tolerances between the players? IDK
 

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Discussion Starter #124
Last January my 2 1/2-year old (released in mid-'07, purchased in mid-'08) Toshiba Qosmio F45 AV-423 HD-DVD notebook took a turn for the worse when it started shutting off after 20-30 minutes of use from overheating. After a few weeks limping along I decided to take it to a local Toshiba authorized dealer to see if it could be fixed. Long story short: after several weeks without a computer (seriously flirted with buying a new notebook), approx. $500 worth of repairs/parts (including a new 500GB drive, a new motherboard that got replaced with the original because the laptop kept crashing with the new one, new fan belts and finally a new CPU) and the loss of everything saved on the Hard Drive to a crash my Qosmio is back, working as it used to. I didn't know it would cost $500 to fix when I started; after the first $200 I doubled-down hoping for the best, and then it was too late to give up. For the $500 I spent plus a couple of extra hundred bucks I could have bought a Tosh Satellite laptop with BD playback and an iCore5 Intel chip.
On the other hand I still have a "portable" HD-DVD player to take with me on long trips and which will play a handful of discs ("Atonement," "The Host," etc.) that won't play on my HD-A20 or Xbox 360 drive. The crazy things I still do for this high-def format.



Which brings me to GALAXINA: 25th ANNIVERSARY EDITION (one of those discs that won't play on my other HD-DVD devices). I watched it over two days (once with commentary) hooked-up to my 47" LCD with HDMI, primarily to make sure the HD-DVD playback still worked on the Qosmio, and WOW... this is a really, really stupid movie. It knows it's stupid, I know it's stupid, the people that made it/appear in it know its stupid... but there's something kind-of endearing about the fact these cash-strapped filmmakers had to sweat and create on the cheap their silly space SFX/sets (i.e space bird ship) circa 1980. That effort (which I appreciate more than current filmmakers relying on cheap CGI to save their flicks), the presence of familiar faces (Avery Schreiber, Dorothy Stratten looking smokin' hot as the titular robot, etc.) and the director/lead actor being semi-candid about just how stupid the movie is (plus some cool behind-the-scenes gossip about Stratten before her untimely death) made it a tolerable viewing. Picture is atrocious and vomit-inducing though, easily among the worst "HD" (notice the quotes) transfers to ever appear on HD-DVD since the master clearly wasn't cleaned or remastered for HDTV. Blacks are milky, undetailed and full of analog noise (bad original cinematography = bad PQ). Even Dorothy Stratten's numerous close-ups (the only reason this film even exists at all on home video) look soft and undetailed. Ughh!


I only mentioned the above-story about fixing the computer because, until I notch many more HD-DVD viewings on the Qosmio, theoretically I spent $500 just for the privilege of watching "Galaxina" on HD-DVD.
The only other HD-DVD I tested on the thing was "Forbidden Planet" to see if it had the same skipping moments as it did on the A20 and 360 drive (it did, which means the disc is bad).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dad1153 /forum/post/20212250


Last January my 2 1/2-year old (released in mid-'07, purchased in mid-'08) Toshiba Qosmio F45 AV-423 HD-DVD notebook took a turn for the worse when it started shutting off after 20-30 minutes of use from overheating. After a few weeks limping along I decided to take it to a local Toshiba authorized dealer to see if it could be fixed. Long story short: after several weeks without a computer (seriously flirted with buying a new notebook), approx. $500 worth of repairs/parts (including a new 500GB drive, a new motherboard that got replaced with the original because the laptop kept crashing with the new one, new fan belts and finally a new CPU) and the loss of everything saved on the Hard Drive to a crash my Qosmio is back, working as it used to. I didn't know it would cost $500 to fix when I started; after the first $200 I doubled-down hoping for the best, and then it was too late to give up. For the $500 I spent plus a couple of extra hundred bucks I could have bought a Tosh Satellite laptop with BD playback and an iCore5 Intel chip.
On the other hand I still have a "portable" HD-DVD player to take with me on long trips and which will play a handful of discs ("Atonement," "The Host," etc.) that won't play on my HD-A20 or Xbox 360 drive. The crazy things I still do for this high-def format.



Which brings me to GALAXINA: 25th ANNIVERSARY EDITION (one of those discs that won't play on my other HD-DVD devices). I watched it over two days (once with commentary) hooked-up to my 47" LCD with HDMI, primarily to make sure the HD-DVD playback still worked on the Qosmio, and WOW... this is a really, really stupid movie. It knows it's stupid, I know it's stupid, the people that made it/appear in it know its stupid... but there's something kind-of endearing about the fact these cash-strapped filmmakers had to sweat and create on the cheap their silly space SFX/sets (i.e space bird ship) circa 1980. That effort (which I appreciate more than current filmmakers relying on cheap CGI to save their flicks), the presence of familiar faces (Avery Schreiber, Dorothy Stratten looking smokin' hot as the titular robot, etc.) and the director/lead actor being semi-candid about just how stupid the movie is (plus some cool behind-the-scenes gossip about Stratten before her untimely death) made it a tolerable viewing. Picture is atrocious and vomit-inducing though, easily among the worst "HD" (notice the quotes) transfers to ever appear on HD-DVD since the master clearly wasn't cleaned or remastered for HDTV. Blacks are milky, undetailed and full of analog noise (bad original cinematography = bad PQ). Even Dorothy Stratten's numerous close-ups (the only reason this film even exists at all on home video) look soft and undetailed. Ughh!


I only mentioned the above-story about fixing the computer because, until I notch many more HD-DVD viewings on the Qosmio, theoretically I spent $500 just for the privilege of watching "Galaxina" on HD-DVD.
The only other HD-DVD I tested on the thing was "Forbidden Planet" to see if it had the same skipping moments as it did on the A20 and 360 drive (it did, which means the disc is bad).

Galaxina is one of the worst sci-fi I've ever seen and You paid $500 to watch this crappy movie ? You're my hero mate !
 

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Originally Posted by argento77 /forum/post/20224690


Galaxina is one of the worst sci-fi I've ever seen and You paid $500 to watch this crappy movie ? You're my hero mate !

Ohh... I almost forgot.



I watched Daylight on HD DVD for the 1st time.The HD pics is superb,ok It's not an Avatar but It looks fine for me.The DD plus track sounds bombastic I really enjoyed It.


My judgement: Daylight is a must own (and WOW !
) HD DVD for every HD collector.
 

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Discussion Starter #127
Saw Martin Scorsese's GOODFELLAS (1990) on HD-DVD over the weekend and WOW, the 2 1/2 hour running time just went by so fast (just like every other time I've seen it). Very little else needs to be said about this one (classic rags-to-riches-to-rags mob movie with memorable scenes/soundtrack/performances/endlessly-quotable dialogue) but just a couple of observations. The next-to-final flashback shot of Tommy shooting at the camera, is this meant to be a tribute to the bandit shooting at the audience in 1903's "The Great Train Robbery"? And, when Henry returns home looking for the drugs after being freed on bail from the events of the 'May 11, 1980' montage/scene (a masterpiece of music/editing choices, maybe the best thing Thelma Schoonmaker has ever cobbled together for Martin), did he really expect the drugs to not have been found by the cops? I know the answer but damn if Liotta doesn't completely sell Henry's certainty the drugs are in the house with a believability and conviction that still gives me doubts when I watch.


I hate to say it but the HD-DVD transfer (the same used for the BD versions, but we on the red team got it first back in '07
) is beginning to show its age. Close-ups are fine (the opening shot of young Henry's eye looking at the mobsters on the taxi stand is razor-sharp) but most medium and distant shots look a little soft and smeared, as if shot through vaseline-stained lens (which maybe they used to hide DeNiro's and Pesci's age during the young Jimmy Conway/Tommy scenes). Maybe there will be a remaster for the 25th anniversary BD but this is Warner we're talking about.
 

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Discussion Starter #128
Saw BLOOD DIAMOND (2006) on HD-DVD recently and WOW, its not as good as I remember it. I really liked it when it came out in theaters and when it debuted in HD-DVD (back when Warner clearly liked the red lady more). Five years later and I'm sad to say the movie hasn't aged well in its attempt to mix gruesome/realistic war in Sierra Leone with cliche' action-movie heroics (Leo gunning down dozens of armed men by himself, last-second driving escapes, etc.) all wrapped in the politically-safe message that the blood diamond industry is evil incarnate. There's no Earthly reason for Jennifer Connelly to be this homely-looking and as worthless a character as she is in "Blood Diamond," other than the producers' need for an exposition-spewing dex-ex machina character the audience could relate to (all for naught since the movie bombed theatrically). Djimon Hounson does the best with what he's given to humanize Solomon Vandy's plight (and largely succeeds) while DiCaprio, bless his acting heart, makes Danny Archer's transformation from devil-may-care African mercenary to soft-hearted armed humanitarian as plausible in a big-budget Hollywood movie will allow. Movie looks great in HD, sounds good and the bonus/extras are stacked. The subject matter and director Ed Zwick's penchant for humorless message epics though (from the classic "Glory" to the silly "Last Samurai") doesn't invite many repeat viewings for "Blood Diamond."
 

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Discussion Starter #131
Saw ERIN BROCKOVICH (2000) on HD-DVD for the first time earlier this week and WOW... it was OK. I expected a little more grit and cinematic craftmanship from a Steven Soderbergh movie, but sometimes the most basic stories make for entertaining-enough mainstream flicks (which help pay the bills and finance Soderbergh's 'out there' indie work). "Erin Brockovich" isn't great shakes storywise (underdog sharp-tongued won't-take-crap-from-anyone Mom fights life and her employer for the sake of her kids and poor people's health affected by a bad evil corporation... yawn!) but (a) Julia Roberts rises up and owns this star-vehicle, (b) Albert Finney & Aaron Eckhart give excellent supporting performances and (c) the movie looks/sounds good in high-def. I was entertained for its 132 min. running time and only paid a few bucks for the disc. Money (and time) well-spent, though I doubt I'll ever see this flick again unless it's impress-the-date night.
 

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Well I just watched Swordfish and I wouldn't sat Wow but I did experience guilty pleasure watching it, especially the scene with Halley Berry



I watched two ways. On my HD-A2 in 1080i on a 1080P projector and DD+ audio of course and a ripped version with no compression from my server played with a Popcorn Hour, this time in 1080P to the same projector.


Without A/B comparisons I can't say the 1080i upscaled to 1080P by my HK AVR was not as good as true 1080P (I presume the HD-DVD had 1080P content) but it did bring back memories how slow HD-DVD players (well at least my Toshiba) are in starting up and navigating discs versus BD players.
 

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Originally Posted by lchiu7 /forum/post/20667997


it did bring back memories how slow HD-DVD players (well at least my Toshiba) are in starting up and navigating discs versus BD players.

Well, now... THAT all depends on which BD player you're speaking of.
I love my Pioneer BPD-51, but it's slow as mole's @$$es.
 

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Viewed Sea Biscuit (A2) on my 50xbr1 still looks stunning!
 

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i just watched RESCUE DAWN on an hd-dvd import and WOW was it a great looking movie.sharp and crystal clear video and a dts-hd master audio sound track.just great and a fine example of a film done right by hd-dvd.
 

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Discussion Starter #138
Saw John Carpenter's THE THING (1982) on HD-DVD over the weekend and WOW, it still kicks all kinds of ass. Was seriously considering going to see the new prequel/remake in theaters, so I decided to pop the disc in the ol' HD-DVD player to freshen-up in my mind about the Norwegian backstory. I ended up watching the whole flick twice (second time with the commentary) then all the bonus features. That's 2 hrs plus of documentaries/featurettes/art-still galleries MIA from the DNR'ed-to-death Blu-ray version. Needless to say I didn't bother to go see the new "Thing" because this one is the real deal. Great acting (manly Kurt Russell, hammy Wilford Brimley, no-nonsense Richard Dysart, etc.), memorable characters (is Windows the unluckiest SOB ever or what?), good production values (from Morricone's Carpenter-esque synth score to the refrigerated sets and on-location British Columbia camp) and still-impressive special effects (Rob Bottin's creature/head-with-legs thing, Stan Winston's alien dog thing, etc.) all come together to make a memorable monster/horror movie that stands the test of time. Might rent the new "Thing" when it hits Blu-ray just to see how well/badly they implemented the backstory with which Carpenter starts his remake and hits the ground running. But it'll be a cold day when they pry my HD-DVD copy of "The Thing" from my cold dead hand.
 

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Originally Posted by dad1153 /forum/post/21116443


Saw John Carpenter's THE THING (1982) on HD-DVD over the weekend and WOW, it still kicks all kinds of ass. Was seriously considering going to see the new prequel/remake in theaters, so I decided to pop the disc in the ol' HD-DVD player to freshen-up in my mind about the Norwegian backstory. I ended up watching the whole flick twice (second time with the commentary) then all the bonus features. That's 2 hrs plus of documentaries/featurettes/art-still galleries MIA from the DNR'ed-to-death Blu-ray version. Needless to say I didn't bother to go see the new "Thing" because this one is the real deal. Great acting (manly Kurt Russell, hammy Wilford Brimley, no-nonsense Richard Dysart, etc.), memorable characters (is Windows the unluckiest SOB ever or what?), good production values (from Morricone's Carpenter-esque synth score to the refrigerated sets and on-location British Columbia camp) and still-impressive special effects (Rob Bottin's creature/head-with-legs thing, Stan Winston's alien dog thing, etc.) all come together to make a memorable monster/horror movie that stands the test of time. Might rent the new "Thing" when it hits Blu-ray just to see how well/badly they implemented the backstory with which Carpenter starts his remake and hits the ground running. But it'll be a cold day when they pry my HD-DVD copy of "The Thing" from my cold dead hand.

Yeah... it's a classic and the transfer is one of the best HD-DVD's. It's staying in MY collection for sure!
 

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Discussion Starter #140
Saw James Gunn's SLITHER (2006) on HD-DVD and WOW, it still holds up well. This was the first HD-DVD I ever bought (from Target.com, who hasn't stopped sending pesky e-mails ever since!
) and, though no longer reference, the PQ/AQ are still solid high-def media. Everything that Fred Dekker tried to do in his 1986 "Night of the Creeps" (off-kilter humor, nod to early horror cinema, subversive storylines, etc.) James Gunn does slightly better in this so-similar-Sony-might-just-sue unofficial remake of "Creeps." It helps that, unlike the no-name cast of "Creeps" (except for Tom Atkins and maybe Dick Smith) "Slither" has Nathan Fillion doing the leading-man hero s*** with his tongue firmly in cheek while spewing hilarious dialogue with the most deadpan of deliveries. From the outer-space capsule packing people-festering slugs to some scary set-pieces (including Michael Rooker essentially turning into the monster from Carpenter's "The Thing") that become bloody goofy (i.e. the giant bloated woman) writer/director Gunn, as he did recently with "Super," skews the very type of genre film he's also lovingly recreating.


"Slither" and "Night of the Creeps" (available in a lovely Sony BD) go together like corn candy on Halloween night: once or twice a year is fine, any more on any other date is just too much.
 
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