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Author Topic: US TIDELAND DVD ASPECT RATIO
Isaac Posted: 01-Mar-07 00:01
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I bought the USA thinkfilm DVD yesterday but was highly disspapointed that it has been cropped from it's original 2:35:1 format to fit the standard widescreen ratio 1:85:1. It's better than pan and scan, but it still bugs me that they can't release movies, especially one as visually rich as tideland, in their proper shape.
 
Mr Punch Posted: 01-Mar-07 07:49
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Ugh, I was worried about this. I wasn't sure if they'd cropped it or not (the DVD doesn't exactly specify the aspect ratio other) but I was suspicious when Noah is shooting up at the house and I couldn't see his hand holding the needle, and I remembered that being visible at the theater.

Is the UK DVD in the proper format?

[Edited by Mr Punch on 01-Mar-07 08:04]
 
ccjonesiv Posted: 01-Mar-07 09:11
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what about the US screener? how's that? i haven't watched mine yet. i'm still high off the bootleg.

 
Kirkinson Posted: 02-Mar-07 03:44
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Crap. Looks like I'll be ordering the UK DVD after all (provided that one's correct) unless the separate Canadian edition put out by Capri is correct.
 
Mr_X Posted: 02-Mar-07 17:13
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This is truly depressing news. At 2:35:1, the movie has such a striking and immersive fluidity to it. I can only imagine that reducing the ratio will also reduce this effect on the viewer.
 
Isaac Posted: 02-Mar-07 21:39
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totally. This certainly wouldn't have happend with Criterion.
 
Kirkinson Posted: 03-Mar-07 02:35
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It also happened in France:
http://www.dvdrama.net/fiche.php?7398

And in Belgium:
http://www.dvdinfo.be/bespreking.php?id=3423

And it looks like the Canadian release is incorrect as well:
http://www.futureshop.ca/catalog/proddetail.asp?sku_id=0665000FSM2127
081


So it looks like the UK edition is the only one that got it right (I'm assuming, given that no one has yet mentioned otherwise). The French web site linked to above posted some frames directly from the DVD which suggest that the transfer has more information on the top and bottom but less on the sides.

Here's a still from the French DVD:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v682/Kirkinson/Screenshots/tideland
-comp2.jpg


And (close to) the same frame from the scene as it appears on the Tideland web site:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v682/Kirkinson/Screenshots/tideland
-comp1.jpg


[Edited by Kirkinson on 03-Mar-07 02:56]
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 03-Mar-07 20:12
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"It's better than pan and scan,"

Hate to split hairs, but the process you described would be worse than pan-and-scan. Cropping a 2.35:1 image to 1.85:1 [actually, in this case, 1.77:1] would mean just lopping off the sides; a film would have to be pan-and-scanned to follow the story in certain cases. I've seen movies where they just cropped the sides, and it's truly horrible.

I think you meant "opened up" from 2.35 to 1.77, but the fact is, to my eye, it has some digital pans in it. And, if you compare it to the trailer posted on Youtube, it apparently removes all doubt. It's not open-matte; it's pan-and-scan.

People are going to call/write to the company to complain, so please do so and maybe we can get this corrected. If the UK has the proper aspect ratio, then it obviously isn't Gilliam's choice.
 
Donald McKinney Posted: 04-Mar-07 00:33
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And just what do ThinkFilm propose to do about this problem?? Or are they gonna do bugger all, and leave the Americans in the lurch??
 
brendon Posted: 04-Mar-07 01:01
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Thinkfilm are going to do nothing. At all. Ever.

I've been campaigning over at film ick. It may be in vain, but bugger that. Somebody has to speak up.
 
Mad Matt Posted: 04-Mar-07 15:19
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The UK DVD is indeed presented in the full 2.35:1 aspect ratio.
 
brendon Posted: 04-Mar-07 18:45
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Why is there confusion over the UK ratio? I've been told 2.35:1, 2.20:1 and 2.07:1 - of all things.

Can anybody GUARANTEE that it is 2.35:1?
 
phildreams Posted: 04-Mar-07 21:53
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I'm playing it now with Windows Media Player at 100%. With my tape measure it's 217mm across and 108mm down.

217/108 = 2.01

But this still may be the full picture if it has been slightly distorted either when the disc was made or by the Media Player.
 
brendon Posted: 04-Mar-07 23:27
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Good work, Phil. It is a trick of pixel distortion.

I've put a new post on this subject over at film ick. It includes the official word on the matter from Nicola Pecorini.

And, of course, the ratio of the ThinkFilm release is not approved.
 
cyboexpo2002 Posted: 05-Mar-07 02:37
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I only have a mailing address and telephone number for Thinkfilm:

Thinkfilm
23 East 22nd Street, 5th Floor
New York, New York 10010
USA

212-444-7900.

I seriously recommend a letter writing campaign for my fellow Americans that have or intend to purchase a DVD. On very rare occasion, they (studios) listen and offer send-ins for corrected DVD discs.
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 05-Mar-07 03:39
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Brendan - do you think you could snag some stills from the trailer and post them for comparison to stills from the DVD? People are still trying to claim it's open matte.

I'd swear that, during chapter nine, when Dickens is running around in circles and Jeliza-Rose is giggling, some of those moves are digital pans as opposed to camera moves, but it's a tough call.
 
brendon Posted: 05-Mar-07 14:02
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Who cares if it is open matte? The compositions are altered (ie; runined) either way. Going open matte from 16:9 to 4:3 is different, because those with widescreen sets can expand the middle. Going open matte TO 16:9 (or thereabouts) leaves no option other than pasting paper over your screen.

This is a criminal act of botchwork by ThinkFilm, not to mention many other international distributors.

Support Pecorini and Gilliam: Nicola says this hackery was not approved, boycot the ThinkFilm disc and import from the UK instead.
 
Mad Matt Posted: 05-Mar-07 15:39
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"Why is there confusion over the UK ratio? I've been told 2.35:1, 2.20:1 and 2.07:1 - of all things. Can anybody GUARANTEE that it is 2.35:1?"

All I can say is that the image was the very wide 'Letterbox' presentation when I watched it and the back of the DVD case states that it is 2.35:1. I didn't get a tape-measure or calculator out to check, but there you are. Sounds like the UK version is the one to get.
 
Mr_X Posted: 05-Mar-07 18:09
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This is so incredibly irksome. What a road this film has had to travel.

I think it's pretty safe to assume that ThinkFilm hacked the aspect ratio out of some misplaced concern that a potentially more general, casual home viewing audience might be alienated by massive "black bars" at the top and bottom of the frame. What's so sadly ironic about this thinking is that all they've ended up doing is alienating the majority of people who will *actually* buy/rent the damn thing, because even those who will be seeing the film for the first time on DVD are likely to be movie nuts of one variety or another. Ans as we all know, the problem of a hacked aspect ratio isn't lost on people like us.
 
theshadowalker Posted: 05-Mar-07 21:50
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Hey, all.

Well, I just Googled "thinkfilm email" and came up with this:

mtuckman@thinkfilmcompany.com

Assuming it's valid, 'though it may well not be, I sent this (rather polite, considering) e-mail:

"Hi!

"I was just wondering when y'all were going to release Tideland in its correct aspect ratio (2.35:1), 'cause I'm sure that most of Terry Gilliam's fans, myself included, are really not at all interested in purchasing a cropped version of this film (that is, the 1.77:1 of ThinkFilm's recent release)...?

"Thanks!"
 
theshadowalker Posted: 05-Mar-07 22:04
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...and I just Googled "@thinkfilmcompany" and came up with this:

aklenert@thinkfilmcompany.com

Now, I have no idea who Michael Tuckman (above) and Alex Klenert are, but ThinkFilm's CEO is, I believe, Jeff Sackman and, assuming his e-mail address follows the same format as the others, his might be:

jsackman@thinkfilmcompany.com

But, as is said, I wouldn't bet my life on this.
 
theshadowalker Posted: 05-Mar-07 22:16
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...and I sent my original e-mail to A. Klenert & J. Sackman, and have since gotten this in response:

"Please note that I am out of the office from March 1-5. I will be back on March 6. If the matter is urgent, you can reach my assistant Carly at 416 488-0037 ext 231 or cweiner@thinkfilmcompany.com

"Jeff"


Which, I guess, suggests that my assumption about Sackman's e-mail address was correct?

Now, I'll e-mail C. Weiner.
 
JonBowerbank Posted: 05-Mar-07 23:34
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It makes ZERO sense that the UK got the 2.35:1 while we in the US and most of Europe it seems also got the 1.77:1 transfer.

First of all, 1.77:1 isn't even US standard...just a compromise between US 1.85 and EU 1.66. And last I heard, UK was part of Europe.

We need to flood ThinkFilm with angry letters...or perhaps we could beg Criterion to release an approved version!
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 06-Mar-07 02:11
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Actually, Jon, 1.77:1 is anamorphic full-frame (16 x 9). 1.85 is the US standard, but the distinction is barely noticeable on an actual screen, and a lot of people say 1.85 when they mean 16 x 9 because they're used to it.
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 06-Mar-07 16:20
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UPDATE: Apparently, the region 3 release is also 2.35:1 ... if I can get a specific country, I'll let you know.
 
Mad Matt Posted: 06-Mar-07 17:21
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Well, it makes sense that Revolver got it right in that regard. They might not be up to much as a theatrical distributor, but they know how to put together and promote a darn good DVD. But they have nothing to do with any other region - that's the trouble with independent releases, and perhaps one of the reasons Terry sounds like he's trying to make headway with the studios for his next movies. At least they stand a better chance of a decent (technically correct) release that way, if nothing else.
 
theshadowalker Posted: 06-Mar-07 20:16
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Huh. I sent my e-mail (above) to a few more at ThinkFilm (M. Urman, R. Manis & M. Hirshberg) and, although I don't know what to make of it, I got a reply:

"That was what was delivered to us by Terryís peeps. We are working with them on getting us a useable 2.35:1 master and we will plan another release then.

"Thanks for your enquiry.

"Marc Hirshberg
Senior Vice President
TH!NKFilm

"Tel (416) 488-0037 ext 224
Fax (416) 488-0031"
 
phildreams Posted: 06-Mar-07 20:30
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This just in from Terry G regarding the US DVD release of Tideland:

"I mastered the DVD and decided that opening it up a bit vertically
from the strict 2.35 looked better on the small screen. It's probably about 2.25. It is the choice of the director. Tell the fans to relax. I prefer it this way."

So does this means that the US DVD release actually *is* 2.25??? Thinkfilm in the previous post claim not to have meddled with what Gilliam sent over. Has this thread been misled? Or has some cropping mechanism entered the process that both Gilliam and Thinkfilm are unaware of???

Please advise.
 
theshadowalker Posted: 06-Mar-07 21:10
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Wow. I got another reply to my e-mail (again, above):

"I hope all is well. A colleague passed the below email on to me. I handle all of the DVD Production at THINKFilm. I hope I can lend some help to your questions. You are correct that a 2.35:1 version is the most desired. We had in fact requested one early on in the DVD creation process; however, one was not created. Eventually, a faux 2.35 was created by the UK distributor, which ended up being closer to a 2.25 Ė a quick, but not complete solution. We are only in position to put out what materials are delivered to us, and although we all knew that the 1.78:1 was not ideal, nor true to the film, we had to proceed. We are currently working on getting a 2.35:1 master to work from and will plan a re-release when it is made available.

"We apologize for the disappointment with the 1.78 version. Again, we will release a proper 2:35 as soon as it becomes available.

"Please let me know if you have any questions.

"Kindly,

"Dave Hudakoc.

"Dave Hudakoc
THINKFilm
2300 Yonge Street, Suite 906
Toronto, ON M4P1E4
dhudakoc@thinkfilmcompany.com
(416) 488-0037 ext. 249
(416) 488-0031 FAX"

 
JonBowerbank Posted: 06-Mar-07 21:15
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I got the exact same email from Dave Hudkoc, hopefully they'll straighten it out soon.

That quote from TG refers to the UK version only, I assume.
 
phildreams Posted: 06-Mar-07 21:18
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Thanks for clearing this up, Mr Shadowalker. Terry G's quote just above was regarding the US DVD so this cropping business is probably news to him...
Phil
 
Mad Matt Posted: 06-Mar-07 21:33
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Curiouser and curiouser!

I think the only thing we can say in all certainty is that whichever edition of Tideland you rent or buy, you will be rewarded with a truly remarkable film, however it happens to be presented. Don't let this confusion put anyone off watching it!
 
theshadowalker Posted: 06-Mar-07 21:59
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2.35. 2.25. 1.77. 1.78. This's getting confusing, fast. At this stage, until we get further word directly from the G-Man himself (Terry, that is), I don't know what to think. There're too many contradictions floating about...
 
brendon Posted: 06-Mar-07 22:43
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The UK DVD is how Terry wants it; the others are not.

It's that simple.
 
phildreams Posted: 06-Mar-07 23:17
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More from Terry G:

"I think we have to get the word out NOT TO BUY the American version of the DVD. The Canadian version is correct. It's Region1... so Americans can see the film as intended."
 
theshadowalker Posted: 07-Mar-07 04:18
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I'm not one to just flame away without all the facts and, with all the contradictions previously floating about ("Tell the fans to relax."), I'd been pragmatically trying to give ThinkFilm the benefit of the doubt.

However, Mr. Gilliam's most recent words have pretty much cleared-up that doubt.

Now, my detective's work is done, and I'll be washing my hands of ThinkFilm.

And those e-mails I'd dug up? Do with them what y'all will.

Just remember that ThinkFilm's e-mails are: first initial + last name + @thinkfilmcompany.com

So, in addition to the ones I've already listed above, M. Urman is murman@thinkfilmcompany.com and R. Manis is rmanis@thinkfilmcompany.com and M. Hirshberg is mhirshberg@thinkfilmcompany.com and so on.

[Edited by theshadowalker on 07-Mar-07 04:19]
 
Mr Punch Posted: 07-Mar-07 06:15
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I hope I can find my reciept...
 
brendon Posted: 07-Mar-07 09:36
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So - are we SURE the Candian release is correct?

We're looking for it to be 2.25:1

What other differences seperate the Canadian and US discs?
 
brendon Posted: 07-Mar-07 15:11
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Todd Brown from Twitch has told me that the Candian RETAIL version is fine; other sources suggest the RENTAL version is not.

AICN have succumbed to my pleas and NAMED AND SHAMED ThinkFilm over this issue.

Well done all involved.
 
BionicVapourDude Posted: 07-Mar-07 16:39
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Ok I just ordered the Canadian version via amazon.ca

so hopefully it is indeed correct.

I guess I can use my Thinkfilm one as a coaster.
 
Roman Posted: 07-Mar-07 18:21
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It's on AICN now, which, ironically advertizes the DVD.

http://www.aintitcool.com/node/31793
 
theshadowalker Posted: 07-Mar-07 21:25
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Well, I guess I didn't wash my hands well enough. I just got another e-mail from ThinkFilm.

Make of this what you will:

"The version in Canada and US is the same one. Think and the Canadian distributor collaborated on the project together and have the exact same thing save for logoís. The American version is renting brilliantly out of the gate and has sold thousands in its first week out. This is a jam packed 2 disc fantastic DVD with tons of extraís made especially for the Terry fan. YOU WILL LOVE IT but I am not going to force you to buy it.

"We know about this faux 2.35 look that you refer to below. This was suggested to us about a week before we started shipping orders Ė obviously too late. What you are not aware of is that this was a PAL version that was going to be a simple standard convert and not from the HD so the quality to a fan like you would have been utterly disgusting and you would have been able to slam Think worse than you are right now for not using it. We employ phenomenal people here at Think that only accept the highest quality masters for use with our DVDís so the experience for the consumer like yourself is the best it can be. You simply would not have accepted this shitty quality vesrion even though it would have been a faux 2.35 version.

"...go out and buy this phenomenal DVD and watch it. Then go and get the word out about the truth! If we ever do get a top quality NTSC 2.35 or faux 2.35 that passes the QC here at Think we will get it out on DVD.

"Thanks.

"Marc Hirshberg
Senior Vice President
TH!NKFilm

"Tel (416) 488-0037 ext 224
Fax (416) 488-0031"

Hmn. I wasn't aware that I'd slammed ThinkFilm; personally, I thought my e-mail was rather polite. But, whatever. Of course, the spelling mistakes - and a VP's use of the word "shitty" - would suggest we're rattling their cages...

[Edited by theshadowalker on 07-Mar-07 21:32]
 
BionicVapourDude Posted: 07-Mar-07 21:37
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so I take it I just wasted more money by ordering the Canadian dvd? LOL
 
BionicVapourDude Posted: 07-Mar-07 22:08
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... and if they are going to not have the proper aspect ratio, why is this not on the dvd packaging? Every dvd I buy, I first read to make sure its the proper aspect ratio. At least if I had known beforehand, I wouldn't have purchased it.
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 07-Mar-07 23:33
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"This is a jam packed 2 disc fantastic DVD with tons of extraís made especially for the Terry fan."

That's an exaggeration. There's a 45 minute making of doc which focuses more on the filmmaker's general love for Gilliam than the making of the movie, there are deleted scenes with forced commentary, and there are several interviews; the one with the DP is cool, but the Gilliam one just repeats the same stuff he says in the commentary track.

I was surprised there was a second disc at all, but he acts like those are tons of extras (sorry, "extra's") covering all sorts of new ground. It's not. They're pretty generic. think any recent Spielberg two-disc.

"This was suggested to us about a week before we started shipping orders Ė obviously too late."

So they're changing the company line? It used to be that they started inquiring very early in the process. FUCK! why can't they just give a straight answer?

"What you are not aware of is that this was a PAL version that was going to be a simple standard convert and not from the HD so the quality to a fan like you would have been utterly disgusting and you would have been able to slam Think worse than you are right now for not using it."

Grammar aside, this can not possibly be true. If this were true, Thinkfilm would've already sued Terry Gilliam and the British companies. When a movie is picked up by the distributor, they are contractually bound to provide usable elements to the distributor in a timely fashion. This includes providing a usable transfer, and a PAL transfer to a North American company would simply not qualify. It also makes no sense that they were provided with a fullscreen version in HD NTSC but not a widescreen version.

Thinkfilm is again trying to pass the buck, "Somebody messed up, anybody but us!" Don't let them get away with that nonsense. Call them out on their blatant lies and contradictions.

Another piece of evidence: the region 3 release is in the correct ratio, and region 3 is NTSC. (But that's not definitive, since region 3 also sometimes lets out lower quality picture.)

"You simply would not have accepted this shitty quality vesrion even though it would have been a faux 2.35 version."

If this were true, Gilliam and numerous other people were in violation of their contracts; why, then, did Thinkfilm not simply postpone the release and sue? Given Gilliam's public reputation, most people would've accepted what they said.

"...go out and buy this phenomenal DVD and watch it. Then go and get the word out about the truth!"

Wow, I just assumed they wouldn't want to have a public battle with one of the most respected film-artists of our time. It sounds like they're throwing down the gauntlet with that, and they're definitely saying they won't be offering exchanges...

So, now that they're on the ropes, it's time to re-double our efforts, people.
 
brendon Posted: 08-Mar-07 00:00
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I like this ThatGuamGuy guy.
 
albo Posted: 08-Mar-07 00:04
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So Mr. Gilliam has stated that the preferred aspect ratio for the DVD release is 2.25:1, becase "it looked better on the small screen."

What about folks, like myself, who have a 92" screen and high quality projection? I would prefer to watch the film as it was shown in the theater, at 2.35:1, but there seems little chance of that happening.
Also, what does the ever growing HD-DVD/Blu-Ray community get? An altered version of the director's vision to fit "the small screen" or something to match the quality of the original 35mm?
 
PhilipStephens Posted: 08-Mar-07 00:30
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Based on what Terry Gilliam said about opening up the image vertically, it sounds like rather than cropping the 2.35:1 image to 2.25:1, he opened up the matte above and below the 2.35:1 frame to reveal more picture.

Personally I'd rather see the original 2.35:1 frame, since I have a large screen HDTV, but I could live with an opened up 2.25:1 frame. A cropped 1.78:1 frame, however, is completely unacceptable to me. I have the US DVD on my Netflix queue, but I may just take it off and wait to see if this issue gets resolved before watching the film. Too bad, I was looking forward to it.
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 08-Mar-07 01:17
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albo - I actually have mixed feelings about directors modifying the aspect ratio after the fact myself but, assuming it was cropped, you'd be losing less than 3 inches of picture total on the sides. It wouldn't be that huge. That said, I think it's true that he used the Super 35 they shot on to open it up slightly, rather than cropping it slightly. I will say that the CUs can be really close, and a little more top and bottom room probably isn't a bad idea (after all, isn't a director's vision better served by removing the limitations of theatrical projectors? Maybe he would've wanted it in 2.25:1 to start with if the choice were available.

brendon - we're all in it together. I'm glad there's at least one website out there that has embraced this fight (and this film).
 
Kirkinson Posted: 08-Mar-07 02:14
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"If this were true, Thinkfilm would've already sued Terry Gilliam and the British companies. When a movie is picked up by the distributor, they are contractually bound to provide usable elements to the distributor in a timely fashion. This includes providing a usable transfer, and a PAL transfer to a North American company would simply not qualify."

It would be nice if this was always true, but unfortunately it happens all the time with smaller pictures. For example, go watch any number of DVDs released by New Yorker Films and you'll see tons of poor PAL video conversions with severe combing and other problems.

I know it seems odd that the only thing ThinkFilm would receive would be incorrect materials, but I think we're being a little too quick to call them on every possible problem. In this instance their case is upheld by the fact that several other countries also apparently received incorrect materials to work from.
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 08-Mar-07 03:13
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Why would a company have mastered the 1.77 version in NTSC HD but not the 2.25 one? I get what you're saying, and perhaps I spoke in too broad strokes, but the idea doesn't seem likely. Especially given the various other things Thinkfilm have said which have proved inaccurate, or contradictory. Thinkfilm previously said that they were requesting the proper version from the UK company from the beginning, when they got the 2.25; now they say they only got it late, and didn't have time to correct the mistake. They also still won't acknowledge that Gilliam's transfer is not a "faux-2.35", it's 2.25.

Also, there's an NTSC version in region 3.

Too much of what they say has been proven false ("no proper transfer in Canada"?) for me to take for granted anything they say which sounds fishy is true.
 
Kirkinson Posted: 08-Mar-07 09:01
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Oh yeah, I agree with that. ThinkFilm was definitely at fault. I just think it's equally unlikely that several different companies would have made the exact same mistake totally independent of each other. That leads me to believe there's something else going on in addition to ThinkFilm's mishaps. I doubt we'll ever know all the details, though.

Also, for anyone who is interested in it, I've located the Region 3 NTSC version (apparently from Hong Kong).
http://us.yesasia.com/en/PrdDept.aspx/code-w/section-videos/pid-10046
03119/


YesAsia also has the Japanese version (Region 2, NTSC).
http://us.yesasia.com/en/PrdDept.aspx/code-w/section-videos/pid-10045
83034/


[Edited by Kirkinson on 08-Mar-07 09:04]
 
phildreams Posted: 08-Mar-07 10:15
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(I'll compile all this into an article for Dreams when I get a chance)

More from Terry G...

"I'm embarrassed! Having been assured that the Canadian DVD was the
correct format, I now discover I was completely misled.
What was I thinking? Why hadn't I jumped a plane and flown to Toronto
to buy a Tideland DVD on the 1st day of sales? I would have known
the truth before opening my big mouth. What a fool!!! I can begin
to see why Stanley Kubrick went a bit whacko trying to keep an eye on
every print of his films in every far-flung corner of the globe...
and he had a full-time guy doing the legwork. Any volunteers?
What I recommend for all the owners of the North American Tideland
DVD is to get a roll of wide black tape.... sorry, before you do that
go out and buy a dozen more copies of the DVDs and pass them out to
your friends, then... pause the disc at the Capri Films logo when it
flares out into a blue sky. What you see is the correct proportion
of 2.35:1. Then unrolling the tape, mask off the black areas on the
screen above and below. If you want to leave a little bit more space
top and bottom of the logo you will end up with the UK proportion.
Then you should just sit back and enjoy. All the information left to
right is there. There was no panning and scanning. Just stupidity."
Terry
p.s. Check next day to see how many of your friends will still look
you in the eye. They are the people you should be spending time
with. Fuck the others!
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 08-Mar-07 15:52
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"All the information left to right is there."

I hate to disagree with Terry Gilliam, but I suspect he's been misinformed again. Anybody who compares the image on the DVD to the 2.35 trailer floating around the Internet should be able to confirm my observation that the sides are cropped. I definitely thought I noticed a few pans thrown in too, but there's no way the sides aren't cropped.

Compare the opening of the trailer, which is Jeliza-Rose in the overturned schoolbus, to the same shot in the film. The bus clearly goes on, on both sides, to one additional window. Another good reference shot is the day/night pan with the bus.

It might certainly be bother cropped and opened up (it seemed a little taller), but it's definitely cropped on the sides, unless the trailer is wrong.
 
Mr Punch Posted: 08-Mar-07 19:36
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I'm pretty sure the sides are cropped as well. An example I mentioned earlier is where Noah is shooting heroin at the house and the injection is off-screen (I remember it being visible in the theater 'cause it made one of my friends squirm [she doesn't like needles]).

This is getting quite a bit of attention. They mentioned it at The Digital Bits as well. I hope ThinkFilm comes up with some sort of resolution.
 
theshadowalker Posted: 08-Mar-07 21:52
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Oh, bloody hell. I'm going back to my original stance: utter confusion. (And I'd already ordered the Canadian DVD, too. Bleh.)
 
BionicVapourDude Posted: 08-Mar-07 22:46
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yeah i own the think version. already ordered the canadian version. but now i guess there are two canadian versions? not sure if i got the right one or not. apparently one is correct and one isn't. only time will tell when it arrives. this whole situation is totally ridiculous!
 
brendon Posted: 09-Mar-07 01:03
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Very sad that Terry is being misinformed. If one person deserves a straight answer, it's him.
 
ccjonesiv Posted: 09-Mar-07 01:39
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so i just ordered the canadian version that was linked to in another post.

so...

would you recommend cancelling that? are all copies floating around fucked up?
 
brendon Posted: 09-Mar-07 02:18
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Seems to be that only Revolver in the UK got the job done right.
 
Jay G Posted: 09-Mar-07 05:40
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This is the only review of the Canadian DVD that I've found:

http://www.twitchfilm.net/archives/003465.html

In it, the reviewer specifically mentions that the image is in scope, and thus slightly letterboxed on 16:9 screens. He again mentions this in the comments section.

There seems to be confusion since some retailers in Canada, like Amazon.ca, are carrying both the US and the Canadian DVDs. The Canadian DVD is produced and distributed by Maple Pictures, which has this info on their website:
http://www.maplepictures.com/catalogue_detail.jsp?catalogID=1074&MODE
=100


Sadly, that page doesn't mention aspect ratio aside from "letterbox," which isn't very clear.

One has to wonder where Terry is getting his information from. If he has the Canadian DVD in his DVD player, then that's one thing. However, if he's getting info on the Canadian DVD from someone else, we have to make sure that info's credible.
 
Katie 80 Posted: 09-Mar-07 06:38
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I think the only reasonable response to this ridiculousness is to completely avoid going through the proper channels. Somebody with the the UK version should rip it and distribute copies -- we can even set up some kind of PayPal account for Terry Gilliam. I mean, we already know what his stance on piracy is:

"It's hard for me to worry about the studios losing money. I'm not very sympathetic to their money problems, because they certainly haven't been sympathetic to mine.

"When you look at one of their accounting sheets you realise you're never going to see a penny, so if someone wants to rip them off that's fine with me.

"If you're going to pirate, though, make sure the quality's good. Have some respect for what you're pirating!"

Taken from here: http://www.bitsofnews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3
396&Itemid=2


It's the only way I can think of that would both help out Terry Gilliam while screwing over one of the many companies that doesn't give a rat's ass about him OR us. Were I not an American, I'd set it up myself.
 
theshadowalker Posted: 09-Mar-07 07:44
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You'd've thought that, by now, one of the major DVD sites would've simply capped the various regions' various DVDs and compared-and-contrasted the results on their site. I mean, wouldn't that settle things?
 
brendon Posted: 09-Mar-07 09:36
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Shadow, I'd love to do that - but I simply can't afford to. Anybody out there with the US and/or Canadian release who wants to help me out with a screen cap or two?
 
phildreams Posted: 09-Mar-07 10:20
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There's an article at http://www.quickstopentertainment.com/ with some screen captures.
 
Kirkinson Posted: 09-Mar-07 11:26
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I think they actually got those caps from this thread, Phil. Those are the same two stills I linked to above.
 
rdm Posted: 09-Mar-07 15:51
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that's brilliant, Katie 80 - except that Gilliam has already been paid his director's fee, and the people who would lose out with your suggestion aren't the studios (there were no studios involved in making the film), but the people who financed the film, the producer, and the international (independent) distributor who licensed the film to Think on the producer's behalf.

If piracy replaced the purchase of theatre tickets and DVDs as you suggest there would be no money going back into the system which would allow films like Tideland to be made. So rip away - and then don't complain in 5 years time when no-one (studio or indy) can finance Terry's films because they can't get any revenue from selling them.
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 09-Mar-07 16:00
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Katie - I'm pretty sure that even though Gilliam is not morally opposed to piracy, you'll notice that, legally, he stopped short of actually advocating it. He just said he's sympathetic. He couldn't possibly accept money from people bootlegging his movie, because the exclusive rights to make money of distributing the DVD have already been sold to Thinkfilm; he'd be then legally implicated in a federal crime. And he's no longer a US citizen, so I don't even know what they'd do to him.

... I didn't know how to do screengrabs, but I returned my DVD yesterday anyway, so I wouldn't be able to. It was fun, I told the woman at the store that the aspect ratio was messed up and gave her the number of Thinkfilm to call and say that customers were complaining and returning the discs. Then, somebody came up to me and said "I was looking to buy Tideland, I love Gilliam, what's the problem?" That gave me a nice grin.

If somebody does get a chance to grab some screengrabs, I'd like to request, specifically, the sorta wide (the widest, anyway) shots of J-R in the overturned bus, and the day/night bus pan. Then grab the same shots from the 2.35 trailer. We know that's 2.35, nobody seems to be sure about the Canadian one.
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 09-Mar-07 16:07
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Those screengrabs are really bad; the color is messed up on the DVD one, and it's not a good scene for comparison.

That said, you can clearly see cropping on both sides [notice that the hill on the right -- my right -- starts to curve back down in the 2.35, but is cut off before the peak in the 1.77 ... and just compare where the shadows end on the left]. Another reason this is a bad shot, though, if this were only opened up, not cropped -- and, judging by the mailbox, it appears to be slightly opened up on bottom; judging by the sky, it definitely looks more open -- the shadow and the road would naturally extend further to both sides, so it would potentially appear to be more cropped than it was. The screengrabs should probably be interior shots, because the interiors in this movie are jam-packed with Gilliamic detail, and that would be much easier to spot as missing (that's why I say the bus, because you can count the windows in the bus as an easy reference).

I should point out that, by my understanding, opening up Super 35 generally does result in cropping the sides somewhat. I had thought this was limited to 2.35 --> 1.33 conversion, but I guess not.
 
Vince Posted: 09-Mar-07 20:50
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With all this nonsense I feel unexpectedly privileged to have seen the film presented in it's correct format (UK release). I'd recommend that all Canadians and Americans order the UK one, but then remember that few, if any US TV sets can display PAL properly. Unless some DVD players can convert the signal to NTSC, but even then it wouldn't look as good.

ps: Gilliam should send someone around to blow a big raspberry in Dave Hudakoc's face (or something naughty and suitably childish!!)

[Edited by Vince on 09-Mar-07 20:52]
 
Jay G Posted: 10-Mar-07 04:01
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I emailed Maple Pictures about their Canadian DVD of the film and this was their response:

Hi Jay,

We apologize for the inconvenience this has caused. Unfortunately, we are just acting as the distributor of this film in Canada. We were not involved in the authoring of this DVD. We were supplied with the same master that the American distributor had used which means that our aspect ratio is identical to the US release.

Regards,
Customer Service
Maple Pictures Corp.

So their DVD has the same video as the US DVD.
 
Jay G Posted: 10-Mar-07 04:42
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It appears that the twitchfilm reviewer has changed his statement on the aspect ratio of the Canadian DVD. From a comment on a post about this issue on the site:

"Crap. No, you're right. The Canadian edition uses the bad ratio. The title [cards] for the production companies have it in the correct ratio and then it swtiches once it gets into the main film. My bad."

http://www.twitchfilm.net/archives/009277.html
 
Donald McKinney Posted: 10-Mar-07 09:49
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Oh, dear!! I bet someone is gonna get a bollocking for this cock-up!! I hope the Canadian's are going to correct the problem too!!
 
BionicVapourDude Posted: 10-Mar-07 18:06
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It really amazes me how there can be this much misinformation floating around... "get the canadian dvd... no dont get the canadian dvd... no wait get one canadian version, the other is bad... no wait they're both bad...' I CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE!!!

well my defective canadian dvd is on the way, so i guess it can sit proudly on my shelf next to my defective american one.
 
Vince Posted: 10-Mar-07 20:03
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^ oh shit :/
 
Mr_X Posted: 10-Mar-07 22:23
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OK, just watched the ThinkFilm DVD last night. The bottom line is that the film is most definitely cropped on the sides and sometimes this is brutally evident. There are figures and heads partially cut off in various shots and there is no way on earth they were planned that way. As I feared, the film does lose some of its lyrical sweep and feels more claustrophobic at this ratio. Also, as has already been mentioned, you can clearly see that the title inserts for the production companies are at the correct ratio but then that wonderful wide frame disappears once the film kicks in.
 
theshadowalker Posted: 10-Mar-07 22:37
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I know this's off-topic, but it does fall into the whole Gilliam-films-get-****ed-by-the-studios motif:

I've posted, in the "Questions and Answers" section of this forum, some concerns regarding the 12 Monkeys DVD. And it would be greatly appreciated if someone could tell me if: [A] I'm just being stupid; or, [B] the DVD is, in fact, also ****ed.

Thanks!

[Edited by theshadowalker on 10-Mar-07 22:38]
 
Donald McKinney Posted: 10-Mar-07 23:07
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It would seem that way, but I'm guessing this was just a mistake, and ThinkFilm have put their hands up, and owned up to the error. I would hardly say studio interference, just a technical error.

Just give the rights to Criterion, they'll do it justice!! Even though it's a recent film, it deserves the Criterion treatment!!
 
Isaac Posted: 11-Mar-07 00:13
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Seems like criterion would have done it. The only gilliam movies not touched by them to date are 12 monkeys and jabberwoky. Munchausen, holy grail, and fisher king got the laserdisc treatment only. They also recently worked with Tideland producer Jeremy Thomas on the release of Nic Roeg's Bad Timing. Maybe we should start pestering them, because otherwise it seems that american chaps like me are out of luck getting the film in true widescreen. I got to see it in a theater in Seattle last November, but I know most gilliam fans over here weren't so lucky.



 
Donald McKinney Posted: 11-Mar-07 11:00
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I saw the 2.35:1 version in the cinema, which explains why I could see a copy of Monty Python's Contractual Obligation Album near the start of the film in Noah's appartment, but I couldn't see it on the DVD. I thought I was going mad when I couldn't see it on the DVD, now I know why!!
 
brendon Posted: 12-Mar-07 14:54
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We've got them on the ropes. Isn't this where we press for a new version, and a free replacement scheme for those who purchased the first version?
 
theshadowalker Posted: 12-Mar-07 21:50
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Well, I've now got both the American, ThinkFilm DVD and the Canadian, Maple DVD and the discs themselves are, in fact, exactly the same.

Very disappointing.

What a waste of $. Sigh.
 
Mr Punch Posted: 13-Mar-07 05:08
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Why don't you return the Maple DVD? Or have you unwisely opened it?
 
theshadowalker Posted: 13-Mar-07 06:15
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Well, I didn't so much as "unwisely" open it as "had to" open it: the casing merely stated, somewhat unhelpfully, that the film was "Letterbox"...no ratios or anything. But I could still probably return it, though, simply 'cause that's vague to the point of being misleading.
 
cyboexpo2002 Posted: 13-Mar-07 21:00
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Checking on the case, it actually says cryptically that it is a pan and scan:

"16:9 ANAMORPIC FULL FRAME"

I thought the studios were over all this "we want it to fit your screen!" junk. The sad thing is, I watch on a 4:3 screen so it's still got bars AND it's cropped. Junk. Absolute rubbish. Completely unacceptable. I'm not sure whether to return it or keep it right now as it's still in the plastic. I want a DVD copy and to support Terry but I don't want to get a region-free player to watch the darn thing.
 
wendell Posted: 13-Mar-07 22:53
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I own both the THINKfilm and Revolver DVD releases. Neither one has an aspect ratio anywhere near 235:1. Neither has had the matt opened vertically. The Revolver release is only slightly wider than the THINKfilm, (no more than 190:1, likely even less). There is no significant difference between them. Forget all rumors to the contrary. Don't waste your time or money trying to find a release with the proper ratio at this time. I'm a professional photographer, and am very sensitive and easily upset by any cropping of images. Imagine my mood.
 
theshadowalker Posted: 14-Mar-07 03:29
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So, nobody got it right then? Weird. Why do Gilliam's DVDs always go all wonky?

And, for what it's worth, the American, ThinkFilm casing states:

"16:9 ANAMORPHIC FULL FRAME "

And the Canadian, Maple casing states:

"LETTERBOX DVD SCREEN FORMAT"
 
wendell Posted: 14-Mar-07 07:59
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The Revolver box clearly states that it is 235:1 aspect ratio. This is definitely not the case. I sent an e-mail to Revolver, very politely asking them to explain the discrepancy. Frankly, in spite of considerable self restraint on my part, I will be surprised if I get a reply, let alone a straight answer. I will post their reply here, if my expectations are exceeded. All very frustrating. I'm glad to see the outrage being expressed here. I've often thought that I was quite alone in my crusade against the modification of aspect ratios to fit TV screens, whether 4:3 as in the past or now with l6:9 screens presently common. Keep the rage up until the suits realize that those of us who take film seriously won't put up with their pandering to the clueless.
 
brendon Posted: 14-Mar-07 21:35
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Can anybody else substantiate Wendell's comments?

Phil?
 
FHW Posted: 15-Mar-07 07:40
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Are the bonus features on the R2 UK release the same as ThinkFilm's? From what I'm hearing, I need to swap my R1 release for the Gilliam approved R2 release, but if Disc 2 is different, I may have to buy both.
 
wendell Posted: 15-Mar-07 18:54
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The bonus features are the same on disc two of both THINKfilm's and the R2 Revolver releases. Note the info on my previous comments re. aspect ratios, regardless of Gilliam's supposed approval of the R2 release. Is anybody else willing to actually look at and compare these two releases, or is everyone content to just listen to rumors re. the facts?
 
Vince Posted: 15-Mar-07 22:37
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Well the Revolver release is supposed to be about 2.25:1, so not the 2.35 cinema print release, but opened up vertically a bit. I'd imagine it would be pretty obvious that there is a variance between the R1 releases as they are supposed to be 1.78:1

Why would Gilliam approve of the UK release if he hadn't seen R1 and R2 side by side?
 
wendell Posted: 15-Mar-07 23:49
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Hey, I'm just trying to tell you what is, not what is "supposed to be." I've read everything you've just posted, in previous posts. I have both releases. I spent the money to find out for myself what the facts are. I've compared them carefully, and I stand by my previous observations:

Neither one has been opened up vertically. They are the same vertically. This is obvious by careful comparison. Furthermore, any vertical cropping of either release would result in obvious problems in the extreme close ups of faces. Therefore if they are the same, there is no vertical opening up in either one.

The Revolver R2 is slightly wider, but nowhere near 235. On a 16:9 screen there are small bands, top and bottom of the image indicating that the aspect ratio is slightly wider if the vertical proportions of the image are the same. I'm estimating the aspect ratio as no more than 190:1 and likely nearer 1:85.

Now, I have no idea whether Terry Gillam has actually viewed both DVDs or has relied on what others have told him. Maybe people he has relied on to carry out his wishes have failed to do so. Maybe, because of financial concerns, he feels it's necessary to re-assure us that there is a version that is acceptable to him available. Look, I respect and admire Gilliam as a film maker, and believe he is far more uncompromising in his vision than most. But even so, when a lot of money may be at stake, sometimes you just don't want to know what you're afraid to know.

Whatever. What is, is. Check for yourself. I'm just a messenger. You are welcome to ignore the message.
 
wendell Posted: 16-Mar-07 00:21
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P.S.

Look, I'm sorry to come off so cranky, but I'm disappointed like everyone else. The bottom line in MHO:

The Revolver release is for me just marginally superior because of the slight extra width. And I will keep that version until a proper aspect ratio release becomes available. A big IF. I'm not holding my breath. If I had realized that the Revolver release was such a small improvement, I would not have wasted my money for it. I'm just trying to warn others of a similar dissatisfaction. Good luck!
 
phildreams Posted: 16-Mar-07 00:27
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I've got more about this including visual analysis of DVDs vs the original frame, together with new quotes from Gilliam which I will put in an article here over the weekend. Wendell and Brendon, this should answer your questions.
 
defaude Posted: 18-Mar-07 08:32
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Hi folks!

As you can see here...

US DVD Cap 1: http://img338.imageshack.us/my.php?image=014055ae1.jpg
UK DVD Cap 1: http://img139.imageshack.us/my.php?image=cap077qw3.png

US DVD Cap 2: http://img261.imageshack.us/my.php?image=025602yq0.jpg
UK DVD Cap 2: http://img301.imageshack.us/my.php?image=cap080ux6.png

The US 'IS' open matte and NOT cropped from 2,35 to 1,78

So i'm not angry about the US dvd, my player can crop it to 2,35 or 2,25 which Gilliam intends.

CU
defaude

[Edited by defaude on 18-Mar-07 08:36]
 
Kirkinson Posted: 18-Mar-07 11:59
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defaude,

If you eliminate the black bars from the UK caps, you come up with an image size of either 640x308 (for the first one) or 800x385 (for the second), which means the aspect ratio is 2.08:1. So it's already quite clear that something is amiss. Moreover, if you were to crop down the first UK cap to 2.35:1 in an attempt to "re-create" the theatrical presentation, you end up with this:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v682/Kirkinson/jodelle-cut.jpg
And that's definitely not right.

I eagerly await Phil's analysis.
 
brendon Posted: 18-Mar-07 15:42
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Are people just neglecting to allow for the 'safety area' here?

All of these comparisons have been carried out, but nobody has even mentioned the concept. Making it hard for me to trust the comparisons.
 
phildreams Posted: 18-Mar-07 16:02
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OK. Let me know what you think of the new piece, lead article at http://www.smart.co.uk/dreams/
 
wendell Posted: 18-Mar-07 17:31
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Interesting, and thanks for the captures. Hate to admit an error, but I was wrong in stating that the vertical dimension on the Thinkfilm and Revolver releases were the same, and that the Revolver was slightly wider. The matt on the Thinkfilm is opened up some, and the width of both releases are cropped heavily the same amount. Damn, my lying eyes. Another thing that pisses me off is that my equipment is cropping the horizontal ends of the image significantly (Samsung HL-S5087W and OPPO, OPDV971H), compared to the screen captures displayed.
Anyway, if I had a vote on a reissue I'd go for actually doing what Gilliam wanted, which is to preserve the 235:1 width, but open the matt vertically to create the 225:1 ratio he requested. Hope it happens!
 
Donald McKinney Posted: 18-Mar-07 18:20
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I'm hoping that ThinkFilm will offer to replace faulty discs to all those affected by this mistake, but I can't see that happening.

(Post #100!! It's been going on for this long now!!)
 
Kirkinson Posted: 19-Mar-07 05:11
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Excellent, Phil! It's wonderful to finally have so many questions put to rest. I suppose I can be thankful that I was too broke to buy any of the DVDs when they came out.

So has anyone been able to confirm the rumors about the Region 3 release from Hong Kong? For $18 maybe I'll take a gamble on that one, though I'm guessing it doesn't include the commentary.
 
Slartibartfast Posted: 21-Mar-07 20:43
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Well, firstly, it's a pleasure reading ALL of these posts--it's a fresh of breath air to peruse a board with intelligent folk such as yourselves.

I have a few things to offer and comment on:

After finally looking at the recent comparisons...the only thing that looks different is the vertical. Close scrutiny shows--to me--that the width difference between samples is negligible. However, the vertical difference is certainly noticeable. But, in my film-buff opinion, I'd rather lose a touch of vertical, as opposed to cropping the sides. In fact, I don't think losing a bit of top and bottom is disturbing to my viewing pleasure, nor influential to the artistic vision of the film.

Am I wrong here? Of those four screenies posted, are any of them the true ratio? Because all four of them seem to represent the same horizontal ratio, however many here are posting that the DVDs available all have significant horizontal loss. I don't see any loss between the screenies.

Still I'm confused after reading the myriad posts here. Being an American...which version DO I want? Are we to assume after all this banter back and forth that a correct version will be released for the American public?

Can I get a straight answer? Which am I to buy? Keep in mind my comments above--I don't mind losing a touch of vertical, but can't stand losing horizontal.

ps. for the record, I already submitted myself to Gilliam for the purchasing PA position. I'm anxiously waiting for a response.


[Edited by Slartibartfast on 21-Mar-07 20:50]
 
Kirkinson Posted: 21-Mar-07 23:20
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Slartibartfast -

You should keep in mind that although a few trees on the side might not be too important for that particular shot, in closer shots with tight framing (and you know that Gilliam uses every inch of the frame) the information lost on the sides of the frame may be much more important. Going from 2.25 to 2.05 means losing a tenth of the picture, which seems pretty significant to me.

I think the best straight answer is "Wait and see if ThinkFilm reissues their disc." Unfortunately, know one knows when -- or even if -- that'll happen.
 
wendell Posted: 21-Mar-07 23:47
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Well, Startibartfast, I tend to trust the screen captures posted by Phil. They clearly show that both the Thinkfilm and Revolver releases have been cropped severely on the ends of the horizontal image compared to the theatrical release. The Thinkfilm shows a little more top and bottom image content expansion, which is fine with me, as I expect to lose some image on my TV from over scan. Personally, I'm not nearly as concerned with aspect ratio being preserved as some sacred shape or proportion of height to width of the image as I am with preservation of image information. What matters to me is keeping all the image content available that the cinematographer and director wished to show as their finished product, typically as shown in the theatrical release. After all, you could keep the "correct" aspect ratio, by cropping the image down proportionally, vertically and horizontally, thus maintaining the correct aspect ratio, but also unacceptably losing a considerable amount of the original information the director desired to be seen. At this point, at least for me, no version is acceptable. If I hadn't already purchased, I'd hold off for the possibility of a re-release maintaining the image content of the theatrical release.
 
Slartibartfast Posted: 22-Mar-07 12:35
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Thank you gentlemen...I think the one thing that needs to be cleared up, has not. You see, I'm only comparing the screenshots, which is my only knowledge of the film. In my previous post, I asked whether any of the sceenies were the true aspect ratio.

Now, from the screengrabs, the comparisons are neglibible between the horizontal, and opened-up in the vertical. That's not a problem. However, I've not seen the theatrical release, and from comments, am assuming that the horizontal has been tweaked quite a bit--that's a big boo-boo.

I'd prefer the straight up theatrical release. But hell...the truth is, if that never happens, I still get the movie (shhhh, don't tell anyone).
 
Kirkinson Posted: 22-Mar-07 12:45
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The third screenshot reflects the theatrical image. If you feel the horizontal difference between that image and the two above it is negligible, then the only remaining issue is how much information you feel is important.

Personally, I think the amount lost (especially on the left side) is far from negligible, especially for a Gilliam film. The information in that particular shot may not be important, but if the entire film has that much cropped on the sides it could be very significant for many, many other shots.
 
Mr_X Posted: 22-Mar-07 14:16
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"Personally, I think the amount lost (especially on the left side) is far from negligible, especially for a Gilliam film. The information in that particular shot may not be important, but if the entire film has that much cropped on the sides it could be very significant for many, many other shots."

Yes, that's the issue. And trust me, there are a fair number of shots with tighter framing that are badly marred by this cropping. Furthermore, the cropping has the overall effect of diminishing the beautiful, wide sweep of the exterior scenes -- the ones that Terry has described as providing the viewer with a sort of "exhalation" after the "inhalation" of the interior scenes. This is butchery, plain and simple.
 
Slartibartfast Posted: 22-Mar-07 14:23
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Interesting. I'm pretty hardcore about my aspect ration, and hate when things are cropped, squished, or otherwise changed--but dang guys...looking at all the screenshots, and looking at the left and right sides of each image, there's only a few pixels missing horizontally. Even a stickler like me wouldn't mind. You guys are even more hardcore than me...because honestly, looking closely, the horizontal loss is in the millimeters (on your TV).

I'm a filmmaker and actor, and this tiny difference doesn't bother me. It's when there is important visuals (artistic or informational) missing from a shot...then I have issues.

I have to take a look again...but I'm pretty sure there's only a few pixels total missing from the horizontal.

[Edited by Slartibartfast on 22-Mar-07 14:24]
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 22-Mar-07 15:37
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"I have to take a look again...but I'm pretty sure there's only a few pixels total missing from the horizontal."

Well, I'm 100% sure you're wrong, unless you're watching the film on a two inch screen. Do you notice the arrow which encompasses an entire tree? That's more than "a few pixels".

I will say, with no intended disrespect to Phil, that those pictures do not neccessarily completely reflect how butchered the transfer is, because they're just a simple establishing shot. Although, to me, the fact that the house is significantly more off-center than intended is a telling change.

"You guys are even more hardcore than me...because honestly, looking closely, the horizontal loss is in the millimeters (on your TV)."

Um, looking at what?

Here's a little basic math: If you have a 20" TV, 1.33, your screen is approximately 12" by 16". Losing one-tenth of the image on the sides therefore means that you lose more than an inch and a half. According to: http://www.sks-bottle.com/340c/mmTOinch.html that is more than forty millimeters. (Obviously those are rough calculations.)

If you had a five inch TV screen, it would be 3" by 4". Even that would be ten millimeters of loss. Doesn't sound like much, so I guess you could probably still enjoy this film on a five inch screen or less without a significant amount of loss.

"I'm a filmmaker and actor, and this tiny difference doesn't bother me. It's when there is important visuals (artistic or informational) missing from a shot...then I have issues."

First of all, who are you to decide which of Gilliam's visuals are important and which ones aren't? Gilliam as a director uses clutter to wonderful effect, and I want all the clutter he felt was important in the shot. He also specifically said that he wanted the very wide shots to capture the emptiness of the area. But, you know, it's no big deal what feeling the director wanted, or whether *he* feels the transfer is badly changed.

Beyond that, did you ignore the posters who said (accurately) that Jeff Bridges shooting up with heroin is now cut off by the frame line? That seems like an important change.

Anyway, the person who prepared the fullscreen transfer clearly felt differently than you, because (s)he pan-and-scanned to the extreme edge of the frame in several shots, in order to follow the action. If you think pan-and-scanning a Terry Gilliam movie is no big deal, I don't know what to tell you.
 
wendell Posted: 22-Mar-07 22:57
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Is it possible that those of you who think of the information missing, as merely a matter of a few insignificant pixels in the screen captures of the dvd's vs. the theatrical version, are just not noticing the marks on the screen capture of the theatrical release that reveals the differences between them? Otherwise, it's no wonder the dvd release companies figure that just filling the TV screen completely is all that really matters to the multitudes.
Jesus wept!
Me too.
 
meuphere Posted: 23-Mar-07 22:41
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Beware, also, a rental from any Blockbuster store, as you will be renting an R rated version as opposed to the UR version from Netflix. I have made this mistake so many times and vowed not to be duped again, but I was caught! Not only do I have the wrong aspect ratio, but I have paid money for the kiddie version, cleansed for the masses. This happened before when I inadvertantly rented The Piano Teacher and Inside Deep Throat. Why in the world would I want to watch the R rated versions of these films? As an adult cinephile, I want to see films as they were intended. I don't need Blockbuster trying to keep me from harm! Fie!
 
Kirkinson Posted: 23-Mar-07 22:55
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Regardless of what Netflix tells you, the theatrical version of Tideland was "R" rated, as is ThinkFilm's DVD. There is no unrated cut of the film. That's not to say that Blockbuster hasn't put out a different cut -- I've heard of that happening before, though they were supposed to have stopped doing it -- but there has never been an unrated cut of Tideland in the USA.
 
Slartibartfast Posted: 27-Mar-07 15:32
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Wow Guamguy--why are you so hostile? I'm a very cool guy, and try and be as diplomatic as possible at times...but what a jerk.

Firstly, I wasn't talking about "a few missing pixels" in the original theatrically released aspect ratio...I meant from the screen shots, the horizontal loss between the pairing is minimal. I understand the heroine thing...did you read the part where I said I read every post? If not, you're accusing me of what you yourself have done. I understand the theatrical release is a different ratio than any of the compared shots...that wasn't the question. I was only comparing the screenies (which are all from DVDs).

Breaking down the mathematical loss from ratio to television size is again redundant...because it's comparing the theatrical ratio to DVD difference, and consequent loss depending on the size of a TV. Again, not what I was comparing. Neither I or you have the right to say which shots are cropped, and which aren't in a transfer. I don't think I every claimed to know that...If forced to choose, I would be making the best educated guess as a film-practitioner...just as anyone would.

It seems you got your panties in a bundle for no reason at all, except for some reason I rubbed you wrongly--after close self-inspection, I can't seem to understand why. Some people are just wound tighter than others I guess.

I, like everyone else that knows and loves film, want to see the true layout of the shot, for which the director and dp have decided on. I don't want to see something that's been tinkered with. Especially something as artful as a Gilliam film.

[Edited by Slartibartfast on 27-Mar-07 15:35]
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 27-Mar-07 17:17
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If I seem hostile, it's because I've spent a month trying very hard, with very little support on-line, to get this problem remedied, due to the fact that I thought 'Tideland' was one of the best, if not the single best, movies I've seen in years. And every step of the way, I run into people who try to argue that it's no big deal or that Gilliam probably wanted it that way, or "Who cares, the movie sucks?"

So we finally get official unquestionable word from Terry Gilliam, the director, [the DP has weighed in as well, but is not on that main page] and what happens? Somebody comes along and says "Hey, it's no big deal, who cares?" And, even more amazingly, not a single thing you said made any sense. And it still doesn't.

"Firstly, I wasn't talking about "a few missing pixels" in the original theatrically released aspect ratio...I meant from the screen shots, the horizontal loss between the pairing is minimal."

What you're saying here makes no sense. I have no idea what you're trying to say. If you read the original posting, why are you still asking which picture is the original theatrical ratio? It's the one labelled "Cinema" 2.35. Are you just comparing the US and UK DVDs? Because that's what it sounds like, only I can't imagine why somebody would repeatedly claim to have read the whole thing without actually doing so. It's not hard to read, it's pretty short. Yet nothing you say makes it sound as if you read the whole thing *or* every post in this thread.

"I understand the heroine thing...did you read the part where I said I read every post?"

I saw that you claimed it, but I also saw you claim that you had no knowledge of any missing information in any pictures. It's really not that hard to follow, I honestly can't understand what you don't get.

"I understand the theatrical release is a different ratio than any of the compared shots...that wasn't the question. I was only comparing the screenies (which are all from DVDs)."

No, the theatrical ratio is the compared shot marked "Cinema Tideland 2.35:1". I'm not sure how they could make that clearer. Perhaps, Phil, could you add a big flashing arrow which says "This is the theatrical ratio." Something flashy, to keep people with short attention spans focused.

"Breaking down the mathematical loss from ratio to television size is again redundant...because it's comparing the theatrical ratio to DVD difference, and consequent loss depending on the size of a TV."

Right, I did that in response to your false statement that the loss on a TV would be in the millimeters. I'm sorry that you said something completely nonsensical that you yourself won't even stand by, but I don't think it's my fault.

"Neither I or you have the right to say which shots are cropped, and which aren't in a transfer."

Luckily, neither you nor I has to, because TERRY GILLIAM has spoken. He says they're cropped, they're visibly changed from the intention, and the MOVIE HAS DIGITAL PANS ADDED TO IT. If you think that's good enough, fine, but keep it to yourself. The last thing Thinkfilm needs to hear is that *anybody* is satisfied with their butchery.

And, yes, regardless of what you think, they butchered the picture.

"I, like everyone else that knows and loves film, want to see the true layout of the shot, for which the director and dp have decided on. I don't want to see something that's been tinkered with. Especially something as artful as a Gilliam film."

then why did you say:

"It's when there is important visuals (artistic or informational) missing from a shot...then I have issues."

It seems pretty directly contradictory to at first say "it's no big deal that they changed the picture that dramatically" and then say "But I only support movies in the director's vision."

[Edited by ThatGuamGuy on 27-Mar-07 17:22]
 
Slartibartfast Posted: 27-Mar-07 20:07
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Wow.

Firstly, I did read every post. This does not mean that I am without error. I didnít realize that one of those images was the true theatrical ratio. Am I forgiven? I didnít realize my mistake would create chaos. And regardless, I still looked closely at each screenshot, and didnít see that much horizontal loss. Running down the length of the sides, marking at a tree limb, or a blade of grassÖI couldnít see that much difference in the horizontal. I guess the screenshots arenít large enoughÖI apologize for upsetting you (somehow).

I really donít contradict myself. On one point, I was confused because I thought all four shots were from different DVD releases, and on the other points about artist importance, Iím pretty clear about the way I feel. Let me make it crystal clear for you--which is what I guess you need--I donít think ANY one should tinker with the artistic vision of the director, or the DP. And it is NEVER acceptable to crop, and certainly never ok to pan-and-scan. Sadly, this is not the case on many DVD releasesÖand nothing can be done. Would you rather I write to everyone involved stating the opinion above in a clear, precise manner? Will that make you sleep better at night?

I think I was pretty clear in my previous posts my belief on tampering with artistic vision. And aside from my mistake about one of the screenies, the rest was clear enough. Yes I tend to use the written English language in a slightly unique wayÖbut thatís because I love to write, and Iím bored with cut-and-dry. If you canít follow the way I write (which you state above), I donít advise you read any Melville.

Now, are we done flaming? Perhaps you should have a Chamomile dispenser added to your cubical. I mean really Guam, can you truly justify your hostility towards me? For the record...I'm not at all upset. No hard feelings.

Cheers!


[Edited by Slartibartfast on 27-Mar-07 21:03]
 
Kirkinson Posted: 28-Mar-07 19:37
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INFORMATION ON REGION 3 NTSC RELEASE

I am very sorry to report that the rumors of the Region 3 release from Hong Kong are not true -- this release is the same incorrect 16x9 framing as the incorrect DVDs from the US and various European countries:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v682/Kirkinson/tideland-panorama1.j
pg


And to make matters worse, while the DVD itself is NTSC, it was transferred from a PAL video source, so there's motion combing all over the place:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v682/Kirkinson/tideland-panorama2.j
pg


Do NOT buy the Hong Kong release (Panorama Distributions) on the basis of rumors which have said it's correct. It's just as wrong as the others, and the PAL-NTSC video transfer actually makes it inferior to the other wrong discs you could buy.
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 02-Apr-07 17:40
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Kirkinson - that sucks, I was actually just coming on to post that I had heard confirmation over the weekend that the R3 *is* the proper framing, in NTSC, but has no extras. Dang.

Does anybody else think it's worth pointing out in the main summary Phil posted -- great job, Phil -- that Thinkfilm is known to have released other films, such as "Keeping Mum", modified from 2.35 down to 1.78 [and, in that case, other countries did receive the proper version]?
 
ThatGuamGuy Posted: 02-Apr-07 17:49
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"And regardless, I still looked closely at each screenshot, and didnít see that much horizontal loss. Running down the length of the sides, marking at a tree limb, or a blade of grass"

I'm not saying those screenshots are perfectly chosen, but you do realize that the entire movie is not an exterior of a field, right? There are instances when the extreme edges of the frame actually do contain important visual information, such as the heroin shot, such as the parts where Dickens is running ahead of Jeliza-Rose and the image has to be digitally panned in order to keep up...

"Yes I tend to use the written English language in a slightly unique wayÖbut thatís because I love to write, and Iím bored with cut-and-dry. If you canít follow the way I write (which you state above), I donít advise you read any Melville."

Come on, dude, here we are at the end of all this and you go and compare your writing style to Melville? How am I not supposed to make a joke which you'll surely misinterpret if you're going to be putting yourself in the same league as Melville?

Truth is, I don't care for Melville; if I'm going to read a long-winded 19th century author, I prefer Dickens.

"can you truly justify your hostility towards me?"

general misanthropy, being tired of people claiming "it's not that big a deal", and boredom at work... pick one. None of them is specific to you, but neither was any hostility. (I should point out, I always come off as more hostile than I feel on-line, I was honestly more shocked than angry; what's funny is, in trying to find ways around saying "What, are you stupid?", because that would have seemed hostile, i wound up finding other ways to come off as hostile.)
 
Slartibartfast Posted: 17-Apr-07 21:56
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1. You don't think I know there are more scenes of importance than those shown from the screen-grabs?

2. I never compared myself to Melville's brilliance...I was simply comparing our slightly disjointed "long-windedness." I'm no Melville...at least not yet. Dickens is nice btw...we agree on one thing.

3. Your hostility isn't justified, and your explanation of your hostility is just annoying. If you feel like all you have is negative shit running around your head, I don't suggest you communicate with others...I hate when people take me on the bus to negative town.

I just want you to know that your urge to call me "stupid" is just your impatience. Clearly by my views and my written candor, I have a working brain in my head. I don't know everything about everything...but I doubt you do either. Just try and stay positive. I'm a huge Gilliam fan...I'm here to talk with other fans...not get reamed for inconsequential nonsense.

Thank you, and good day. Have a better one!

Namaste.
 
TPM Films Posted: 06-Nov-08 14:49
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Hey guys, I know this message is coming more than a year after the last post in this thread, but is there any new information regarding the DVD? I e-mailed all of the same people at Think again and received the same automated replies that were previously posted. I just came across this thread today, and I want to thank you guys for all of your work (especially Phil and Guam) trying to clear this up - you saved at least one person (me) from shelling out their $$ for this hack-job disc. Looking forward to your reply. Thanks.
 
brendon Posted: 07-Nov-08 01:08
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There's almost zero chance of Think reissuing Tideland.

EVER.

Aren't they about to close down, anyway?
 

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