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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just got and watched Opium and the Kung-fu Master starring Ti Lung. I am very excited to finally see these Shaw Bros films on Blu-ray (as much as those fans who are excited to see Criterion releases on Blu-ray).


I was very impressed with the overall quality of the restoration and encoding. Celestial Pictures and Shaw Bros started restoring their catalogs few years back and this is likely from one of those new masters. The print is extremely clean and vibrant. Image is 1080P sharp and detailed in many shots with others suffering from poor focus (very typical of other Shaw Bros pictures which was even noticeable on their standard DVD releases). The picture is encoded in AVC (pretty low bitrate since the entire 90 min feature only takes up 13GB). Audio is DD mono (encoded in 2.0) in original Mandarin, dubbed Cantonese, and fairly decent English. English subtitle is free from overt typos or grammatical errors and overlaps both the picture and the black bars. Extra features include a very informative booklet written by Ric Meyers, three interviews, pre-restoration trailers for the movie as well as other Shaw Bros features, and picture gallery. The case is standard slim plastic Elite style with reversible cover insert.


Although the booklet mentions that 14 Shaw Bros classics were selected for Blu-ray releases, I am not certain that it will happen now that BCI Eclipse has been shut down. I know Life Gamble is still slated for release later this month, but I am afraid there might not be any more coming any time soon. That's too bad since this was an excellent catalog release that put many big name Hollywood studios to shame at an excellent price ($15.49 on Amazon).
 

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Looks like you a huge fan of Chinese and H.K flicks. You seem to be the first to review them. Admire your enthusiasm and spirit.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by benes /forum/post/15492296


Thanks for the report. Added to Netflix queue. I'm actually a little surprised they have it. They also have Life Gamble listed for Jan. 27.

I didn't even notice Life Gamble. I just added it to my queue. Thanks
 

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You all should be advised that the vast majority of the Celestial Pictures Shaw restorations have badly altered soundtracks. HK film fans have been up in arms about it for years, but no one is listening and the horrors continue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt_Stevens /forum/post/15505617


You all should be advised that the vast majority of the Celestial Pictures Shaw restorations have badly altered soundtracks. HK film fans have been up in arms about it for years, but no one is listening and the horrors continue.

I don't think that's the case here. The audio is mono instead of remixed 5.1 track.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·

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Originally Posted by Donnie Eldridge /forum/post/16164554


Have any other Shaw titles been announced?

No, the company shut down and Amazon recently informed me that Life Gamble has been canceled.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by xradman /forum/post/16164628


No, the company shut down and Amazon recently informed me that Life Gamble has been canceled.

Which company, Celestial or Shaw Brothers?


This would be devastating news indeed... maybe this economy is just not suited for nostalgia Asian kung-fu movies...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

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Originally Posted by Rieper /forum/post/16165838


Which company, Celestial or Shaw Brothers?


This would be devastating news indeed... maybe this economy is just not suited for nostalgia Asian kung-fu movies...

Neither. BCI Eclipse went out of business. They were slated to release 14 Shaw Bros movies on Blu-ray, but folded after just 1.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by xradman /forum/post/16166039


Neither. BCI Eclipse went out of business. They were slated to release 14 Shaw Bros movies on Blu-ray, but folded after just 1.

Okay, thanks for that.


Last question from me... if Celestial is doing the recent transfers for DVD (and they look amazing on DVD) why can't Celestial just release them on Blu-ray? Is it a licensing issue?
 

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Celestial is not a publisher but the rights holding company for the Shaw productions. Some publisher has to licence the films from them to release the movies on disc.


BCI Eclipse licensed some but got shut down by its parent company Navarre. Apart from BCI, both Image and Miramax licensed the American distribution rights for some titles of the Shaw Catalogue as well, and released some dvds - hopefully they can publish these titles in HD as well.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by tolpol /forum/post/16168870


Celestial is not a publisher but the rights holding company for the Shaw productions. Some publisher has to licence the films from them to release the movies on disc.


BCI Eclipse licensed some but got shut down by its parent company Navarre. Apart from BCI, both Image and Miramax licensed the American distribution rights for some titles of the Shaw Catalogue as well, and released some dvds - hopefully they can publish these titles in HD as well.

Well, hopefully with Tarantino's relations with Miramax (and being a huge fan of Kung-Fu cinema) he can get them to put them out on Blu-ray...
 

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I saw all the Shaw Brothers's movies when I was a kid and want to keep in my collection again as Blu-ray discs.
 
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