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Hi, everyone. "Moriarty" here with some Rumblings From The Lab...

Wow. Some nice feedback yesterday on both the TalkBack and in e-mail. Sounds like I hit a nerve. One thing is immediately apparent to me… you guys want more DVD coverage. When you write in, be specific. What do you want? What can we do to satisfy you as fans of the format?


Me? I’m just excited that tomorrow is new release Tuesday. I love new release Tuesdays. I love browsing any of three or four stores in my immediate area. Amoeba Records is, hands down, the best store in LA for either music or DVDs. Still, the shameless corporate drone in me sure does get a sugar rush off the always bright and shiny Virgin Megastore on Sunset. Fry’s and even Costco are also regular haunts when looking for deals. Part of the fun of DVD is, in my opinion, the constant hunt. There is no way I’m ever going to have every title I want. There’s not enough time to watch them all, and I certainly don’t have the money. Still, there’s that constant itch, that desire to fill in gaps in my collection, and it all adds to the enjoyment.

There are any number of sites I visit to figure out what’s being released each week, and no one that I trust without double-checking. Dates change suddenly when you’re talking about DVDs. For example, Don May of Synapse films just sent me some news about his upcoming WILD ZERO special edition, which was set to be in stores September 30th. Here’s what he had to say:

Hello Everyone,

Because of a last minute authoring problem we discovered on our check discs for WILD ZERO, we have to fix it before the disc gets released to the public. To make sure the problem is fixed properly, we will have to make new check discs which, unfortunately, will cause a delay in the release date.

The new release date for WILD ZERO is now Tuesday, October 28, 2003.

We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause, but we wanted to make sure the problem was fixed properly. With the complexity of the DVD authoring for this title we just want to make sure it’s OK before putting it out.

Kindest Regards,

Don May, Jr.

President, Synapse Films

Fair enough. It’s because of last minute changes like this that I try to keep a running list in the same Word file that I use to put these columns together. When I publish my list each week of new titles (which I’ll do each Tuesday morning), keep in mind that this is not meant to be a complete or comprehensive list. This is just the stuff that I think may find or deserve an eventual home on the shelves here at the Labs.

Over the last few weeks, I’ve missed a few recent things that I’m interested in, and they’re all still on my radar if I find them at the right prices: NEVERWHERE, which I’d like if only for the Neil Gaiman commentary; a couple of double features from Anchor Bay, featuring FADE TO BLACK/HELL NIGHT and SOCIETY/SPONTANEOUS COMBUSTION; TERROR OF FRANKENSTEIN; TIGHTROPE and WHERE EAGLES DARE, about all that interests me out of the latest batch of Clint Eastwood releases; CAT SOUP, which is the American retitling of my favorite film of 2001, NEKUJIRO-SO; and two whacked out early Almodovar films, DARK HABITS and WHAT HAVE I DONE TO DESERVE THIS?

This week isn’t real heavy, which is good. The months ahead are going to be brutal. When I hit the road today, I’ll be looking for several early John Sayles titles, like BROTHER FROM ANOTHER PLANET and LIANNA and RETURN OF THE SECAUCUS SEVEN. When I met Sayles on the set of SUNSHINE STATE last year, he was just starting to record his commentaries for these films and put together the rights. I’m glad to see that he’s finally got them out. I’m also planning to pick up PRIZZI’S HONOR, which I haven’t seen in a lot of years, a great Paddy Cheyefsky-scripted film called THE HOSPITAL, and SUNDAY, BLOODY SUNDAY, John Schlesinger’s challenging follow-up to his Oscar winning MIDNIGHT COWBOY. Oh... and of course, the real crown jewel of today... the entire first season of SOAP. Holy shit. I’m going to drive everyone in my house insane with that box. I love that show dearly.

Next week, it’s a strange line-up. The new BABE sounds like a nice special edition package, so why couldn’t Universal go ahead and take the same care with the even-better BABE: PIG IN THE CITY? If it’s an anamorphic transfer, they may get me to trade up, but I gladly would have plunked down some extra dollars if they’d done more with the film. Anyone who is a serious fan of ILM and their evolution can trace a lot of what we now see in films like ATTACK OF THE CLONES to the great-work-in-a-bad-film CASPER, which is getting the deluxe treatment. Who’s deciding what does or doesn’t merit that kind of care at Universal? It seems so arbitrary. I think that’s what makes me crazy. Another Sayles title drops that same day, the tense MEN WITH GUNS. Shia Le Bouf was interesting enough in PROJECT GREENLIGHT this season to get me to check out HOLES when it’s released. I didn’t see A MIGHTY WIND, but I’m curious. Same with THE SHAPE OF THINGS. THE BEDFORD INCIDENT is a classic, and there are two documentaries that will test many viewers. SHOAH and SICK: THE LIFE AND DEATH OF BOB FLANAGAN, SUPERMASOCHIST couldn’t be more different, but they’ll both reward the brave and destroy the weak.


Okay, started the day off with the film that is my featured review of the day. CONFESSIONS OF A DANGEROUS MIND. I think I like the movie even more now than I did when I saw it in the theater. Clooney and his director of photography Thomas Newton Seigel may have borrowed liberally from other filmmakers, as Clooney seems determined to convey in his commentary, but they understand what they were borrowing and why. It’s never just about something looking cool. Clooney speaks film. He gets it. Don’t listen to morons who try to pull a POLTERGEIST and peddle the notion that Soderbergh “really” made this movie. If you pay attention, you can tell it’s not true. Clooney’s obviously watched the filmmakers he’s worked with and soaked up technique from them. As a result, there is as much Coen Bros. influence here as there is from Soderbergh. There’s also a lot of Mike Nichols. And some Francis Ford Coppola. And on and on and like I said... despite all that, it works.

The disc is pretty good with a few notable exceptions. The first third of the film almost plays like a technical dare. I love the results of the digital grading that’s used, but it’s an invitation to artifacting. For the most part, the picture delivers strong blacks and sharp colors. The sound is great. Music’s a big part of the film, and you can crank this. You will feel it if you do. The best thing about the disc is the way the extras feel complete but never bloated. When I was watching some of the “making of” stuff on THE CORE last week, it struck me that everyone was overselling the thing. They were all trying to explain what the film meant, or why it was important. Jon Amiel in particular seemed a bit delusional when talking about “reclaiming the action movie for smart people” with his film. Ahem. Right.

By contrast, there’s a real modesty to Clooney and his collaborators in the excellent “Behind the Scenes” section on the disc. For further evidence of just how clever Clooney’s construction of CONFESSIONS is, just check out the “Dating Game Turntable Scene” chapter and check out the set and the camera moves. Clooney talks about live TV as an influence, and I remember his enthusiasm on the set of FAIL-SAFE a few years back. He came to his style as a filmmaker fair and square, and even when he tries to point out what he calls an obvious theft of a scene from another film, all he really points out is how he ended up making it his own, creating some variable, twisting things into an original voice all his own. It would be a tragedy if he didn’t direct more and soon.

There’s a great package of clips from Sam Rockwell’s screen test, and one in particular is just hypnotic. It’s Rockwell dancing. If someone ever gets around to a PLASTIC MAN movie, forget about Jim Carrey. Rockwell’s your man. Even doing something as simple as dancing, he’s got an inner life that’s hard to deny. I wish we could have seen the other screen test that was ordered by Warner Bros. before they put the film in turnaround, but I don’t think Warner or Ben Stiller really wanted to participate. There are a ton of deleted scenes, and I don’t think there’s a single scene that feels like it should have been cut. It appears just to have been a time issue. It’s all good, interesting footage that would have enriched the film if included, and I almost wish Clooney had created a branching edition of the film to include this stuff.

Admittedly, the film’s not for everyone’s tastes. It may be the saddest and angriest of the Charlie Kaufman films so far. Personally, I think it’s a minor miracle, and I gotta give it up to Miramax. Overall, this is a fitting presentation.

Also, if you love that original KILL BILL teaser trailer and want a really sweet copy on DVD, you’ll get one on this disc. Sounds fantastic when you crank it, and it just gets me all silly and excited about the eventual home video release of that film.


We followed up CONFESSIONS with the next episode in the ALIAS box, “Mea Culpa.” The best of the season so far, I thought. For those of you familiar with the series, it was the one where Sloane sets the trap to find out if Sydney is the mole. Great stuff. Best scene was between Will and Francie, drunk, playing with the government bug that Will found. Like I said, I’m really enjoying taking these one day at a time.

CARLITO’S WAY took up a big chunk of the early afternoon. Here’s one of those bare-bones Universal releases that I’m so conflicted about. I dig the movie. I think it’s one of De Palma’s most entertaining. Monstrously good work by both Pacino and Penn. Yeah, it suffers a bit from Penelope Ann Miller Syndrome (remember in the early ‘90s when SAG passed that rule that she had to be in every film ever made?), but that’s just one small distraction in what is otherwise a masterful pulp fiction rollercoaster ride.

The anamorphic transfer is fine, if not particularly distinguished, and the sound quality is strong overall. I just wanted more. The film has a lot of fans. A great two-disc set would have been a hot companion title to the SCARFACE that they’re rolling out on September 30th. Oh, well... count that one as a missed opportunity.

New Line sent over a test disc for their upcoming release of LEATHERFACE: THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE PART III. The disc has a number of special features, like an alternate version of the ending and deleted scenes and a commentary with David J. Schow, Jeff Burr, Mark Ordesky, and others. You can also choose between the rated or the unrated version of the film. Duh. The unrated version we watched was just under an hour and twenty minutes. It was great to see this just after CARLITO’S WAY. We had a mini Viggo Mortensen festival. He’s good in both films, too. The best scenes in LEATHERFACE happen inside the house, when the whole crazy family is together. Mortensen’s Tex is a deranged charmer, horrifying because of how likeable he is. Jeff Burr’s at his best inside, on those sets, when it’s just actors trapped in these crazy scenes. Burr falls apart as a director, though, with all the running around in the woods. None of it is very scary, and a lot of the big beats are badly bungled.

For fans of the series, this is pretty much a must-have disc, and it’s well-handled. I doubt the film has ever looked or sounded quite this good on home video before. Still, the release of this film and the October 14th release of the original SAW in a 30th anniversary collector’s edition begs the question: where the hell is my uncut letterboxed TCM2 with commentary? Anchor Bay? Blue Underground? Synapse? Someone want to get on this one? Please?

HERO was our last film of the day. I wish I could tell you who put this particular edition of the film out. It’s obviously an import. There are subtitles for the body of the film, but no translation for either the opening crawl or the text over that gorgeous last shot of the Great Wall. The picture appeared to be an anamorphic transfer of a 2.35:1 original aspect ratio, and the colors were outstanding. If you’ve seen the film, you know how important the colors are to the effectiveness of the picture. It’s a strong transfer with some kickass sound during the fight scenes or the enormous battles or that scene with the arrows or the quiet conversations or... well... actually, the whole disc sounded pretty great.

I hadn’t seen the film until today. I was going to hold out for a theatrical run here in the US, courtesy of Miramax, but I decided I’d like to see the film before my children do. Those would be my still-to-be-conceived children, Miramax, you slow-ass muthas. I finally just broke down and borrowed it from a friend, and I’m glad I did. I’d heard some people dismiss HERO as a sort of CROUCHING HOMAGE, HIDDEN RIPOFF, and there’s no question there are aesthetic similarities between the two films. HERO isn’t a romantic melodrama dressed up in martial arts the way CTHD was, though. Instead, it’s a koan, a Zen riddle about heroism and honor and revenge. At moments, some of the wire work borders on the ridiculous, but director Yimou Zhang (THE ROAD HOME and RAISE THE RED LANTERN) and cinematographer Christopher Doyle always manage to veer from the ridiculous to the rhapsodic within a few quick shots. This is a visual feast, the sort of film that just washes over you, a nearly tactile experience that depends on so much more than just story for its impact.

Jet Li is good as Nameless, a hero whose exploits earn him a private audience with the King of Qin (Daoming Chen), where he tells the King how he defeated three assassins who have long sought to spill the King’s blood. Sky (Donnie Yen), Broken Sword (Tony Leung Chin Wai) and Flying Snow (Maggie Cheung) have all tried to fulfill their pact for a decade, but now Nameless has defeated them all as a gift for his King...

... or has he?

Like RASHOMON, Kurosawa’s classic story about truth and perspective, HERO is an exercise in point of view. Every set piece is stylistically different, and I don’t think literal reality is a real big priority here. This is as fantastic a landscape as STAR WARS or LORD OF THE RINGS. I flip-flopped in my overall reaction to the film about a half-dozen times while watching it, and in the end, I was won over. I loved every moment we spend with Moon (my future wife Zhang Ziyi), and I’d gladly watch another film that was just about her character. Seeing Tony Leung and Maggie Cheung together in a film so different from their triumphant IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE is a real pleasure. They’re wonderful together once again, and provide the movie with ample amounts of heart and soul. The score by Dun Tan is very good, but at times, he almost seems to be cannibalizing his own CTHD score.

God, I hope somebody figures out what to do with this film soon. A nice big fat region 1 2-disc set. Yeah... that’d be sweeeeet...

And as I type this column in, I’m going to put on disc four of BABYLON 5: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON. I mentioned a while back that Warner Bros. sent me the first season. They’re like crack dealers. Crafty. They knew they’d get me hooked. I never saw one single episode when the show aired. I’m just watching them in order, out of the box, and catching up. I thought Season One was a strong set-up for a series. Season Two was wonderful, much richer, a step up in every way. Three discs into this six-disc set, I already think Season Three is the best so far, and I can’t wait until the whole damn series is out. Keep ‘em coming, Warner Bros. I want to be able to review the entire collection at once, and that means you’ve got to make them all available. Pronto!


Not a lot going on out there today. One great article got forwarded to me by a friend this morning. It appears over at Jo Blo, and it’s about the phenomenon of replacement DVD covers. You have to go check it out to see all the artwork. It’s fun stuff, and I’d love to hear from any of you who do this, and maybe even see what it is you’ve done to your discs.

The Digital Bits has some specs for what sounds like an outstanding live show by U2, originally recorded at Ireland’s Slane Castle on September 1st, 2001. Over in their Rumor Mill, there are some vague rumblings about Warner Bros. possibly releasing full season sets of TINY TOONS or BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES next year. Good lord, that’d be nice. I haven’t bought any of those half-assed collections that are out there now for B:TAS, but if they start doing them as whole seasons at a time, I’m in. Pack ‘em with extras, too, please. Make them a celebration of one of the best superhero translations into another medium ever.

Over on DVD File, there’s word of an exclusive REN & STIMPY collection that features 42 cartoons. I don’t do a lot of direct ordering, but it sounds like this might be worth at least clicking over and taking a look at They also have details about Universal’s offer to exchange the first disc of the MEANING OF LIFE set for anyone having trouble with it. A lot of you have written to me about this, so pay close attention and handle it through the studio if you’re having problems. I still have to test my disc and see if I’m affected by Universal’s “cutting-edge technology.” Sigh.

Before I go, Vroom Socko seemed to think I was trying to be sneaky yesterday, like I thought up the concept of a Question for Discussion. Perish the thought. I happily ripped that off from the TalkBack League of @$$Holes column. Yesterday, I asked you what your first DVD purchase was. Some great answers popped up in TalkBack. Me, I was dead set against the format at first. I wasn’t about to buy into the hype. I had a bit of idle curiosity, sure, but I never did more than casually browse the DVD section, just to see how they were being sold and what was available. This was early ’99, I believe. One day, I’m looking through a bin and I find VIDEODROME. My favorite Cronenberg film. And it’s letterboxed. They never letterboxed the laserdisc. Hmmmmm. I ended up walking out of the store that day with that film, FEAR & LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS, THE MAN WHO FELL TO EARTH, and a Pioneer DVD player. And I’ve never looked back.

Today’s Question for Discussion is what is the absolute worst DVD you own, and why?

See you tomorrow. Until then...

"Moriarty" out.

Readers Talkback
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  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:08 a.m. CST


    by beggar13

    Who's yo daddy beeeaatcchh?!?

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:21 a.m. CST

    worst dvd? gotta call it a tie.

    by OgieOglethorpe

    "Ticker".. I'm a big Seagal fan from way back.. "Out For Justice" was the shiznit, but "Ticker" is just plain shitty. I'm glad I didn't spend much on it. "Predator", only because the US release is void of special features. My 2 disk "Can O' Whoop Ass Edition" from the UK rocks unbelievably. Having to buy 2 copies of any given movie to get the cool special features (or a better transfer) has got to be the 2nd worst thing about the DVD format. The worst thing obviously being the region idea. REGION-FREE ALL THE WAY!

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:26 a.m. CST

    Poolhall Junkies

    by ghekkomanic

    Terrible dialogue, embarassingly strained coolness ("Oh, did I stutter?" Oh, FUCK OFF) but at least the acting (Mars Calahan inparticular) is excrutiatingly bad. And a commentary from the two writers slapping each other's backs over such a great film. Bought it 'cos Harry raved about it, but I think I'\ll just sell it and appreciate The Hustler and The Color of Money all the more.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:28 a.m. CST


    by KID AB

    I got the single disc/no extras one you see. Great film though. Good performances, but i thought the story, if there was one, didn't go anywhere.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:37 a.m. CST

    Conan the Barbarian special edition, just because of the comment

    by Andy Travis

    Gray Davis needs to release excerpts of this commentary to the might help...Arnold delivers thought-provoking comments (like "Look at her tits"). Arnold is drugged or drunk or on some serious medication, and Millius half-heartedly tries to provide some information, but generally just gives up most of the time.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:45 a.m. CST


    by geekzapoppin

    I should say "owned". I gave it away to someone and even he was pissed off that I would foist such a turd on him. I'd say LOST IN SPACE comes a close second. I take no responsibility for that one. It came with the player.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:46 a.m. CST

    Worst DVD

    by iamguthrie

    Supernova. Everything but the deleted scenes is an insult to humanity.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:48 a.m. CST

    Soap Rocks!

    by Roj Blake

    Ah, yes...I, too, plan on having a sudsy, Soapy box set in my possession by the end of today. Here's to hoping the memory does not cheat.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:58 a.m. CST

    Glad you're enjoying that Babylon 5...

    by Russman

    Season 3 kicks ass and Season 4 pours sugar on top of that ass kicking.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:03 a.m. CST

    They Live and Prince of Darkness

    by Toranaga

    I love both movies, but the DVDs dont have any features at all. Just a chapter menu. And it doesnt look like the re-releases are gonna have anything else on them either.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:05 a.m. CST

    Run Ronnie Run comes out today

    by Toranaga

    I don't care if Bob and David say not to buy it because this version sucks. It's actually not too different from their cut. Still a fucking funny movie, and I can't wait to finally have a not so blurry copy.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:22 a.m. CST

    worst dvd...hmmmm

    by bluelou_boyle

    worst film, 'The Postman'. Worst DVD, possibly 'Heat'. The film is one of my favourites, and the visual/audio qualities are great, but apart from 3 trailers, there NO extras !!!! Commentary track ? Deleted Scenes ? Some don't need them, I do.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:33 a.m. CST

    Mori, Notice the Lord of the Rings references in B5 yet?

    by Drath

    Definately one of the strongest science fiction TV shows in a long time, and it creates a very rich universe in such a short time compared to Trek(not that I'm bashing Trek as most woefully immature B5 fans are prone to do). But be warned, B5 peaks in the fourth season because the show was going to be cancelled and creator JMS compressed a lot of the show's story arc into the last four episodes of the season. Consequently, the fifth season is very very thin compared to what came before, and sadly the payoff to a lot of set up is never dramatized on screen. Fortunately, Peter David wrote an approved trilogy of novels that fills in the gaps between the show and it's "predicted future," which unlike in Star Trek is the ACTUAL future of the characters and not arbitrary bullshit to be forgotten in a week. Great show, cheap looking a lot of the time, but still damn good. And you'll notice some frequent similarities to Lord of the Rings (Rangers=Rangers, Z'ha'dum=Khazad Dum/Mordor, Shadows=Sauron, President Clarke=Saruman, Kosh/Sinclair=Gandalf, etc.) that JMS plants throughout the show. Good stuff.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:33 a.m. CST

    I envy you B5 virgins!

    by RenoNevada2000

    I wish I could relive the experience of the thrill and excitement as each twist and turn of this series's story unfolded before my eyes for the first time. And Mori, just wait until tyou get to the cliffhanger at the end of the season. You'll be bellowing for Season 4! :)

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:36 a.m. CST

    Worst DVD I bought

    by RenoNevada2000

    "Jackie's Back" direct by Robert Townsend. I love "Hollywood Shuffle" so I just picked this up blind during a buying frezy. Man did this suck worse than a five dollar whore.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:41 a.m. CST

    The worst DVD I own is a bootleg of Chris Cater's MILLENNIUM - S

    by godoffireinhell

    Ripped from the Japanese laserdiscs so you get wonderful gigantic Japanese subtitles that are, of course burnt into the print. The jackass who authored this DVD also fucked up the transfer so the picture will randomly pixillate or freeze. The joy! And did I mention that 2 episodes are missing? One of which is part of a 2-part episode? I guess there wasn't enough space left on the disc, huh? No special features of fucking course, whom am I kidding? So why in the name of the Lord of Darkness do I hold on to that piece of crap??? Because Fox Home Video decided to do nothing with the series. Nada. Zero. I've been waiting for a DVD release for about 5 years now. Petitions were created and signed by thousands. Fox chose to overlook them. There are about a dozen fansites out there with message boards where each and every member screams for an official DVD release. Fox doesn't give a shit. So, naturally, some scumbag bootlegger from Hong Kong smells lots of cash and cobbles together a crappy bootleg that everyone buys. BECAUSE THERE IS NO FRIGGIN ALTERNATIVE! Remember that time when Fox said that they would not release STAR WARS - EPISODE 1 - THE PHANTOM MENACE on DVD until the third film comes out so they can do a 3-DVD-Set? What happened? Some bootlegger put the film out on DVD instead. It sold like sliced bread. So ultimately Fox gave in and released an official version. The problem is, MILLENNIUM, despite the very large fan community, is not nearly STAR WARS. That's why Fox hasn't done anything yet. They may loose a couple millions in DVD sales but apparently that doesn't hurt them. I would bet anything I have that a MILLENNIUM SEASON 1 BOX SET would sell more copies than the soon-to-be-released X FILES SEASON 8&9. Dear God, Fox, pull your executive heads out of your asses and get moving! What the hell is wrong with you?

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:43 a.m. CST

    Worst DVD

    by rev_skarekroe

    My worst DVD is my new purchase of a Korean bootleg of the 1966 Bob Hope/Phyllis Diller vehicle "Boy, Did I Get a Wrong Number!" It claims to have a newly recorded commentary track by Hope (who's been dead for months), Elke Sommer, and, inexplicably, George C. Scott (also dead). I think it's all the same guy doing funny voices, though. Actually, I made that up. My worst DVD purchase is "Freddy the Freeloader's Christmas Dinner." sk

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:43 a.m. CST

    I meant "Chris CaRter" of course!

    by godoffireinhell

    Sorry, I can't spell for shit when I'm angry ...

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:46 a.m. CST

    the worst dvd i have is... BRAZIL the REgion 2 version they just

    by thx777b

    Yeah it sucks because its the 132 min verson not the 148 min version on the CRITERION and plus there are not special efeatures other than a docu meda in the 1980's which is not even compared with the ones on the CRITERION...

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:49 a.m. CST

    Waking Life

    by Megaladon

    I bought this DVD because it was cheap and I had heard good things. What a piece of crap! The animation is decent, but listening to these idiots pontificating on and on about the universe and life and reality and... well, the more they talked the less intelligent they became and the more bored I got. Avoid this pretentious mess at all costs!

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 10:02 a.m. CST

    Conan Special Edition

    by Phimseto

    God help me, I love the film, but I do not like the "Director's Cut" at all, so I can only hope if they repackage the film down the road, it has both versions a la its fellow 1982 release - "E.T."

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 10:31 a.m. CST


    by kingGirlfriend

    The worst dvd I got is $5 copy of "Metropolis" I picked up that has a real shoddy public domain print and no speakable extras. At the time there was no difinitive version out. Maybe someday I'll splurge for the fancy one just released. Worst movie I got is "Drives Me Crazy" with Mellisa Joan Hart. Worst disc I'm most proud of is a bootlegged copy of "Salo" with burned-on subtitles. Picked up the 2-disc "Casablanca" yesterday and it's real nice y'all. Still waiting for any kind of "Beyond the Valley of the Dolls" disc. All I ask for is a Roger Ebert commentary. Pretty please mister man. Throw in a letterboxed version of "Danger: Diabolik" and my nuts are officially tickled.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 10:38 a.m. CST

    Not the Worst DVD

    by TechnoMage30

    Actually, I don't own a DVD that IMHO is that bad... I'm very picky about the movies that I buy, and I consider long and hard whether or not I will a) even WANT to watch the film again, and b) if the experience of re-watching the film again will be close to as good as the first time I saw it... That's why my DVD shelf consists of only a handful of titles: A Few Good Men, The Fugitive, The Negotiator, Black HAwk Down, Pearl Harbor, and LOTR:FOTR extended cut. And I'm so glad to see you giving Babylon 5 coverage, Moriarty! :-) I used to be a Trekkie. I'll even onfess to watching Voyager, although being really displeased with the way they handled most of that series... then I had a friend of mine explain a little of Babylon 5 to me, and I first came into the series about a third of the way through Season 3, and i've never looked back. I remember reading a very succint, but apt summary of Seasons 1-3 that went something like: "Saeson 1 wasn't the best, but it was interesting enough to keep me watching. Season 2 I could tell was much richer in story and plot, and was setting something up. Season then sends you some place dark and nasty that you weren't expecting to go in Seasons 1 and 2." Have you gotten to the episode "A Late Delivery From Avalon" yet? drop me an e-mail when you do... I'm interested to know your thoughts on that one. :-)

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 10:42 a.m. CST

    Clash of the Titans

    by tommyboy27

    I don't know if it was the movie, or the DVD release, but DAMN! I worshipped this movie as a kid, so I was so excited when I saw it on DVD. Call me disappointed! Also, burned this week on the Heathers DVD as well. The transfer was so fucked up, I had to fast forward past the funeral of the football players missing one of my favourite lines in the film! "I love my dead gay son!"

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 10:53 a.m. CST

    Ah, c'mon, Phimseto!

    by Nordling

    The commentary alone is worth the price of admission, with Milius going bugfuck and Arnold saying "exactly every 2.4 seconds... I didn't realize the edit was different though. That's one of my favorite DVDs. I think the worst DVD I own is that crappy PANIC ROOM Superbit because I loathe all things Superbit and my wife wanted it badly, so I capitulated.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 10:57 a.m. CST


    by Cap'n Chaos!

    Either the Airport DVD my Mom gave me for Christmas that's full-frame and from Goodtimes (she knows I'm a Dean Martin fan, so...) or my import copy of High Risk. Great movie. Shitty DVD. Still glad I have it. It's hard to beat a movie that STARTS by blowing up a bus full of kids.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 10:59 a.m. CST

    In terms of visual presentation, my worst DVD title is Brian De

    by Osmosis Jones

    What a half-assed transfer. Aside from being letterboxed, it looks like some grimy, beat-up VHS copy that had been rotting away on the back shelf at Blockbuster was just slapped onto DVD. Okay, they *did* remix the sound into 5.1 (all the better to appreciate Bernard Herrmann's magnificent score) and provide a very solid 35-minute Laurent Bouzereau documentary, but it's easily the worst-looking title I own (hell, even Ed Wood's movies have better transfers!). As for the worst *movie* I own? Maybe My Favorite Martian, but just because Elizabeth Hurley is bound and gagged in it.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 11:12 a.m. CST

    There are 3 things that suck about the CONAN special edition DVD

    by godoffireinhell

    1.) The omission of the theatrical version. Personally, I prefer the director's cut but the fans should be given the choice and the possibility to compare the two versions! 2.) No 5.1 mix. I am all for the inclusion of the original audio track but again we should be given a choice. The music that plays over the menus ironically IS in 5.1, thus giving us an all too brief taste of what could have been. 3.) That Milius and Arnold enthusisticly talk about KING CONAN on the disc is just painful to listen to now that Arnold has turned his back on filmmaking. It will never happen (well, maybe with The Rock as Conan but who wants to see that?) and it just hurts to listen and dream about what will never be.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 11:29 a.m. CST

    My worst and first... The Shining

    by Tsunami3G

    Full Screen?!? C'mon!

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 11:40 a.m. CST

    The Column

    by earl_roberts

    I'd just like to say, about time! Nah seriously DVD got no coverage on this site for toooo long so I'm glad for this column now. This is my first talkback post too!!! I didn't really hit the site too much cause all the talk was on films I never had a chance of seeing until months after {I'm a U.Ker} and I only really hit DVD sites and forums but I gotta make sure I come to AICN more often now! Maybe you're saving it for a later column or something but you didn't mention the news on ONE FROM THE HEART. I've never seen it but this release has me all excited, gotta get it for sure. Oh, you think we could have a little anime DVD coverage too? Not sure if you dig it but YOU SHOULD! But on to the question, my worst DVD is Tartans version of Hard Boiled. My sister got it me for christmas when I first got my player. It's pan and scan and dub only and is the reason I spent

  • Because the movie's terrible of course, but mainly because of that looping version of crocodile rock on the main menu. Arrgh. Lots of good stuff here today, including B5 and what amounts to the first AICN review of Hero. Man, when do you sleep? Not to mention work?

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 12:17 p.m. CST


    by Spaz_Monkey

    In all fairness, Kubrick filmed The Shining in Full Frame. Any time you see in in widescreen, it's because the film has ben matted. But Ol' Stan loved his 35mm films.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 12:22 p.m. CST

    The DVD of The Shining

    by Dward

    Please y'all... Just stop with the bitching and moaning about the full-screen transfer of The Shining. Just stop it. Do you know why it is a full-screen transfer? Because Kubrick wanted it that way? But, why would he want it that way? Well... Probably because HE SHOT IT THAT WAY! Short version (as I remember it. If someone knows something different, I'm all ears): Kubrick hated all of the various methods that he had seen to transfer 2001: A Space Odyssey to video/television (from the horror of panning and scanning a film like that, to a letterboxed screening on the BBC where the black-bar area was turned into a starfield in the thought that it would be less intrusive) so much that he decided to never again shoot anything in a way where it would be butchered that way for television/vido. This led him to shoot all of his subsequent films full-frame. You are not missing ANYTHING with a full-frame transfer of The Shining. You WOULD be missing the top and bottom of the image if it WERE anything but full-frame. I'm reminded of an occasion when I was working at a video store and a customer was going on and on about how much they wanted a copy of Gone With The Wind, but they couldn't bring themselves to buy a copy of it because nobody had released a Widescreen Edition of it. I tried over and over to explain that the Widescreen process hadn't even been developed yet when GWTW was made, but they wouldn't have any of it. "A film like that", they said, "deserves nothing less than the finest anamorphic-widescreen transfer they can get for it."

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 12:23 p.m. CST

    Shittiest Movie I OWN

    by JimmyRabbit

    some crap named GEN-X COPS got it for free and boy did it suck

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 12:36 p.m. CST

    As far as my worst DVD...

    by Dward

    Worst movie: Maximum Overdrive. I just love it for no defendable reason. It's my ultimate guilty pleasure. Worst DVD (transfer/sound/extras): After a bit of pondering, I'd have to say my UK import of Buffy The Vampire Slayer season 4. I was as excited as anyone else at the prospect of seeing my precious, precious Buffy in the glory of anamorphic Widescreen for the first time when I placed my advance order for this set, but as I plowed through the discs I quickly realized that even though I was getting extra information - the extra information that I was getting was not factored in during shooting. After seeing innumerable light kits, dolly tracks, lens iris', etc. I decided that I would not be buying any subsequent seasons from the UK, and would just wait for the US releases. No matter how much later they came out. How much longer until the season 5 release again?

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 12:39 p.m. CST

    Great Column...

    by Truman_Burbank

    Not quite sure why some of you would buy a movie you haven't seen, or don't like. Really don't understand why Mori would buy "The Core" and "Bulletproof Monk", just for the sake of buying them, when he knows they suck. Send your money to someone who needs it next time you have that urge. Like me. A few quick things: Whoever said "Waking Life" is most likely retarded, no offense to retarded people. That's one of my favorite and most viewed DVDs, and the extras are perfect. Whoever said "Heat" is dead on, those extras suck balls. But my personal least favorite would have to be "Fargo", just because it's such an amazing movie and it has jack dick on the DVD. At least they're putting out an SE soon. HEY MORI: I seem to remember you enjoying the Qatsi films, and I know "Naqoyqatsi" is coming out the same day as "Matrix Reloaded". Any word on a box set for the whole Qatsi trilogy, so I can put off buying the new one?

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 12:59 p.m. CST

    The worst DVD I own...

    by JonQuixote

    Probably GONE IN 60 SECONDS. I didn't buy it though. Damned JanQ and her "gifts." God, is that movie Ass. She also bought THE CELL, so while I technically don't own it, the fuckin' thing sits on my shelf. God, if you thought GONE IN 60 SECONDS is ass...

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 1:01 p.m. CST

    It's a toss up...

    by Ferris80

    My worst DVD is a toss up between "The Island of Dr. Moreau" (Found in a discount bin) and the Animated "Lord of the Rings" (Got as a gift). Not only were the movies bad, but the production of the disc blew. Just to put my two cents in.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 1:03 p.m. CST

    Reefer Madness

    by Mumbleboy

    Who would think of owning a DVD of this movie? Me, that's who. Washed out look and dirty images. When is Criterion going to give all of us the Reefer Madness DVD we are dying for? I need commentaries by the pothead in the closet. If only he could get a word out between the THC induced insanity giggles. That DVD and any commentary with Governer Ah-nold. Totally recall his SAG card.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 1:10 p.m. CST

    What I want and my (ugh !) worst.

    by RobinP

    What I would like from the column - hmmm, being that there are often huge differences between Reg 1 and Reg 2 versions, I'd ideally like to see a bit of space devoted to what we can expect on R2. (Yeah, I realise and appreciate that's difficult, but there are enough of us living in the twilight zone of region 2 to lend a hand if need be. our new release day here is Monday. (Someone COULD submit an Indiana Jones box review on the UK Monday release for inclusion on Tuesday's column if one were so inclined....) My worst dvd was the Anchor Bay "Sword & the Sorcerer". The film just hadn't aged as well as I'd hoped. I finally traded it in and lived with my memories instead. Currently, my worst is "I Spy". What in God's name were they THINKING ??? (Come to think of it, what was I thinking buying that crap in the first place.) Murphy is spectacularly unfunny & Wilson is just...irritating.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 1:19 p.m. CST

    I can honestly say...

    by Bad Guy

    ...that all of the worst DVD's in my collection were purchased by my wife. "Krush Groove", "Highlander 2 & 3", "Logan's Run", etc. I love my wife dearly , but she does have an affinity for bad B-movies. I have a few that I would go so far as to call "guilty pleasures", ie: "Nightmare on Elm St. 3 & 4", etc., but nothing that I would call a really bad movie/DVD. Great column, Moriarty. Already got my "SOAP" box set! Woo-hoo!!

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 1:20 p.m. CST


    by Roguewriter

    My DVD player was a wedding present four years ago from my two best friends, and when they unveiled it, they kindly presented me with STROKER ACE, my first DVD. I screamed in terror (there's nothing redeemable about that film, nothing! Well, maybe Erin Gray...) -- until they mercifully added THE MATRIX, the ALIENS boxed set and about a dozen other great titles to the stack. But you know we watched STROKER ACE first. Oh yes. We had to.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 1:23 p.m. CST

    Worst DVD I own is...

    by Doughboy

    Titanic. I love the movie(and am not ashamed to admit it), but the DVD Paramount released is inexcusable. Non-anamorphic and completely devoid of extras save for the 4-minute trailer that gave everything away. The highest grossing movie of all time and THIS is the treatment it gets?! And I don't wanna hear any crap about the studio not having time to put together any supplements. The DVD came out a year after the VHS, so they clearly had all the time in the world. And oh by the way, this disc was released over 4 years ago and Paramount and Fox still have yet to come up with a Special Edition.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 1:37 p.m. CST

    My worst DVD....Windtalkers Director's Cut

    by unwell_arena

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 1:38 p.m. CST

    Windtalkers DC

    by unwell_arena

    I adore Face/Off and that sweet OOP Killer/Hard-Boiled two-pack, but that mess is just painful to watch.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 2:02 p.m. CST

    The crappiest DVD in my collection...

    by Cheeseman

    ...has got to be BATTLE BEYOND THE STARS. I'm convinced everyone involved in this production must've been on drugs. How else do you get people like Robert Vaughn, Jack Peppard and John-Boy to say lines like the ones in this film? Seriously, James Cameron must've put something in their beers during filming...

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 2:05 p.m. CST

    My first and worst...

    by Wungolioth

    Has to be Lost In Space, but it came free with my Sony DVD player. LIS and The Mummy parts 1+2(in full frame, no less) are the worst movies I own, but the latter 2 were gifts. The most disappointing DVD I own is the True Stories DVD that was only released in Full Frame, with zero extras.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 2:06 p.m. CST

    i must agree...

    by TenDeuChen

    i neither got into, or watched any of babylon 5 when it was first on (i was only 10 years old) but my dad did...and when they released the season 1 box set last year, i remembered that he liked it, so i gave it to him for christmas, and then we started watching them, and now i'm hooked!!! This show is sooo great...Season 2 was even better, and now i've just finished watching season 3 a couple weeks ago. I can't wait until they put out seaons 4 and 5! and they better hurry it up i can't deal with the cliffhanger of 3x22 "Z'ha'dum" much longer!

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 2:14 p.m. CST

    if not worst dvd, the strangest 4 me maybe...

    by Acne Scarface

    is the columbia/tri-star region 1 release of drunken master 2. those who waited 4 a better presentation of this film had 2 b mightily disappointed when playing this. the picture quality looks good, widescreen, but what is up with that language track that bounces from chinese 2 english every few seconds? "i can't stands no more!"

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 2:47 p.m. CST

    the worst I ever got was True Romance, (non-special edition)

    by Blacket-Man

    I was still new to the DVD game and did not know that one should wait for your favorite movies to come out in a Special Edition format. AAHHHH the agaony, what a miserable copy. That's why I am eagerly waiting for the Right Stuff to come out in a special edition. Hey does anyone know when it's coming???

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3 p.m. CST


    by Phimseto

    Yes, I know I am being harsh, but my disappointment was profound because my expectations were high. I agree with you on the commentary. I enjoyed it, but as someone else on this Talk Back noted, it only invokes pain thinking about how there was going to be a "King Conan." We most likely will never see that, unless Arnold loses. But then, even if he does, we probably still won't see it as I think Cruz Bustamante and Grey Davis will succeed where Lex Luthor failed and cause California to fall into the ocean. Otisburg, here we come!

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3:03 p.m. CST

    Right Stuff SE

    by Dward

    Hey Phoney-Bone: There actually is a 2-disc SE of The Right Stuff currently available! I think it came out sometime last year. I've never seen the film, so I don't have anything to say myself regarding the SE, but here's the stuff that Amazon lists as it's extra features. "DVD Features: Theatrical trailer(s) All-new digital transfer Scene-specific commentaries with director Philip Kaufman, producers Irwin Winkler and Robert Chartoff, cinematographer Caleb Deschanel; and cast members Jeff Goldblum, Veronica Cartwright, Scott Glenn, Ed Harris, Dennis Quaid, and Barbara Hershey. (TRT 25:00) 15 minutes of Deleted Scenes/Bonus Footage/Never-before-seen additional scenes 3 new documentaries on the making of the film including interviews with Mercury astronauts and Chuck Yeager Feature documentary John Glenn: American Hero Interactive timeline with vintage footage Widescreen anamorphic format Number of discs: 2

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3:06 p.m. CST

    right stuff special ed out now

    by Acne Scarface

    why there are foreign dvds that translate dialogue and not anything written on the screen is a mystery to me. a similar feature can be found on the hk import of in the mood for love, and irritated me enough 2 get rid of it.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3:08 p.m. CST

    The Two Towers-2 disc widescreen edition...

    by MisterGrimloch

    is easily the worst disc i own, as the movie sucks worse than a broken Hoover.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3:11 p.m. CST

    hey Lawrence Hugnut...

    by MisterGrimloch

    let me guess, you think Star Trek (anything other than TOS) is actually worth watching, right?

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3:23 p.m. CST

    worst DVD's I own...


    Actually, I'm a pretty careful DVD shopper - I got stiffed on X-Men, though it's still a good disc. I gotta go with Predator, which desperately needs a Special Edition, the Twin Peaks pilot (import, no frills), or Full Metal Jacket (no frills, gift). Of course, the best ones - FOTR, Twin Peaks Season 1, Behind Enemy Lines (mediocre movie, but reference quality audio/visual).

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3:40 p.m. CST

    My worst: Bill Lustig's MANIAC starring the great Joe Spinell

    by Charles Grady

    Not coincidentally, MANIAC is also my only blind buy out of 250 discs. It's an ugly, mean little movie with a borderline genius Joe Spinell performance, but it's like bathing in sewage for 90 minutes, the cheesy and HIGHLY unlikely Caroline Munro love interest subplot notwithstanding. Being an Anchor Bay title DIRECTED by Bill Lustig, the head of Anchor Bay, it's loaded with bonus features, including a 90 minute Spinell life story documentary that's sad and unsavory in equal measure, as well as a commentary by Lustig and one of Spinell's old drinking buddies, who otherwise seems to have no connection to the production whatsoever. Weird.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3:42 p.m. CST

    not to nitpick, Mister Grimloch...


    but I would hazard that a broken Hoover doesn't suck at all... so are you praising The Two Towers? Oh, don't bother to tell me to shut up, I'll do it myself.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3:43 p.m. CST

    worst A/V: Charles Bronson's CABOBLANCO

    by Charles Grady

    It's one of those 5 dollar no-name brand DVDs you find in the back of Tower Records. The otherwise 2.35:1 film is squeezed to 1.85:1, the colors are faded, the print is scracthed, and get this - the video company's LOGO appears and disappears throughout the film.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 3:52 p.m. CST

    Just as long as you're happily ripping me off.

    by vroom socko

    Then that's fine. Worst DVD I own? Meet the Feebles. Great movie, horrid disc. The image sucks, the aspect ratio is off, the sound is inconsistant, and there's no chapters. I want me a quality release of this sick fuck of a movie, damnit.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 4:09 p.m. CST

    Welcome to B5 Mori,

    by buckna

    Better late than never to the greatest sci-fi epic ever IMHO. But as someone else mentioned, don't get your hopes up about Season 5 too much after the marvelous Season 3 & 4, it goes downhill fast as they tried to drag out the storyline that remained. (A lot of the stuff with the beginning of the telepath war is just cringe inducing, not to mention Tracy Scoggins!) As for my most disappointing DVD, would have to be the Director's Cut of Blade Runner. Much like those who mentioned Conan, I would really love to choose between the original release and the director's, for the very least, so I can compare the two. Plus it's much easier to introduce someone new to the movie with the theatrical "bastardized" version and then once they like it, show them the director's true vision.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 4:16 p.m. CST


    by jimmychitwood

    can someone tell me one dvd worth watching w/ the "branching" option...i've never even seen one...i thought it was a myth, like dry land....

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 4:39 p.m. CST

    Wungolioth- I hear ya.

    by RenoNevada2000

    I have never bought True Stories on DVD as I absolutely refuse to own that movie unless its in widescreen. Sadly, I think it's probably not much (if at all) a priority for Warner Brothers...

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 4:40 p.m. CST

    kinggirlfirend: beyond valley of dolls

    by pavemental

    I got a bootleg of "Beyond the Valley of the Dolls" off ebay. Some enterprising soul ripped the widescreen laserdisc. ONe of the best DVDs I own. Hey Mori! How about a feature on bootleg DVDs? These days find myself more interested in tracking down the boots than the real things.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 4:45 p.m. CST

    Word, geekzapoppin. NOTLD: 30 is the most rancid piece of shit e

    by Cash Bailey

    I bought that disc long before I ever read Harry's review of it so I was stuck. I want to vomit just thinking about it.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 4:46 p.m. CST

    Comedies in desparate need of a special edition release

    by RenoNevada2000

    Right now I can think of three, oddly enough both Paramont titles. First of all SOUTH PARK:BLU. If ever a comedy needed a commentary track, it's this one. I would love to listen to Trey and Matt detail over the length of the movie all the BS they had to go through with the MPAA. Also, not all of the trailers made it onto the disc. The second disc I think could use a Special Edition release is PRIVATE PARTS. This one doesn't even have the trailer! Hell, at least the UK edition got the trailer and about 30 minutes oif interviews with the cast. (God bless my all-region player). Unfortunately, since Howard's split from his wife, I seriously doubt you'll get him to sit down for a commentary track. Finally, I think MST3K:THE MOVIE needs the SE treatment. First of all, how fun wiuld it be to have a commentary track about a movie that makes comments about another movie?! Secondly, there was supposedly an alternate ending that was shot but not used. Besides, this film needs to be back in print.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 4:56 p.m. CST

    Here's a good branching dvd, JimmyChitwood

    by RobinP

    X-Men 1.5 !! It's the still only...branching dvd I own. Luckily I hadn't bought a player when the original disc came out so I wasn't stiffed when the 1.5 debuted - merely a case of upgrading vhs to dvd. The only criticism (and this is nitpicky, I know) is that it takes a second for the player to locate the branching footage every time, and the new footage picture quality isn't as good.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 5 p.m. CST

    Worst DVD I have...

    by wash

    ...It's Pat. Boo-yah.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 5:07 p.m. CST

    Great column - try Laser Blazer on Pico

    by Weakmesh

    Hi, just wanted to say thanks for the great column. I've recently thought that though there are tons of sites to get DVD news from, there is very little intelligent commentary about them (and the releases). Keep them coming. And, check out Laser Blazer on Pico...not as many used DVDs as Aomeba (of course) but unbelievably thourough in its collection...they even have a complete Criterion section.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 5:16 p.m. CST

    by far the worst

    by moviebuff4life

    The worst movie I have in my collection, and I hate myself for buying it, is by far Sylvester Stallone in Get Carter. Why oh Why did I allow myself to waste money on that garbage!

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 5:33 p.m. CST


    by MisterGrimloch

    you are correct in the assessment that a broken Hoover would not suck at all, which plays into my original post where i stated that "The Two Towers sucks WORSE than a broken Hoover." in this post i establish that The Two Towers sucks even worse than a vacuum cleaner that cannot suck, since it is broken. this means the film is so utterly horrid that it manages to do an even worse job at sucking than a vacuum cleaner that cannot suck at all. in essence, i am saying the film is lower than a zero, if you will. funny thing how whenever a comment is made about this laughably overrated lame-ass trilogy, someone instantly arrives on the talkback to "protect" these shitfests that Peter Jackass is cranking out. oh, and don't bother to tell me to fuck off, i'll just go do it myself. by the way, the worst dvd i STILL The Two Towers, because the movie blows worse than an east coast hurricane. how's that?

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 5:38 p.m. CST

    Worst DVD, not worst MOVIE...

    by NNNOOO!!!

    I don't own truly bad DVDs for long unless they're movies I can't find anyhwere else. Currently remaining in my library on original-movie-merit alone are FLASH GORDON (letterboxed 1.33, no trailer, just a chapter search screen); TWIN PEAKS original pilot episode (Chinese import with atrocious sound and blurry picture); and COMRADES, ALMOST A LOVE STORY (no menus at all). I also hate the so-called 'isolated score with commentary' on BLADE and FLY AWAY HOME-- yes, the music is isolated from the rest of the soundtrack but the freakin' composer talks on top of it all the time! What's the point?

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 5:40 p.m. CST

    Grimloch corrects Grimloch...

    by MisterGrimloch

    indeed, my last post should have read "The Two Towers blows MORE than an east coast hurricane." this delightful play on words establishes that The Two Towers is so mind-numbingly attrocious that even the might of an east coast hurricane cannot "blow" (hahahahahaha!!!! oh, the chuckles never end with me.) as forcefully as this shit heap of a motion picture.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 5:41 p.m. CST

    RenoNevada: re South Park BLU

    by Nordling

    Sadly, I don't think there will be a special edition of this one anytime soon. Parker and Stone are righteously pissed off at Paramount over the whole thing, and have refused to do commentary. Sorry, I don't know all the details, I just remember reading something about it when the Season 1 came out. Maybe someday, though.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 6:12 p.m. CST

    Hey godoffireinhell!

    by DocPazuzu

    The Australian (region 4 PAL) Conan Collector's Edition has all the extras of the U.S. disc AND the 5.1 mix. You can order it from I got it in a dual pack with Conan the Destroyer for about 25 bucks. It took less than a week for delivery to Ohio. Worth every penny.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 6:21 p.m. CST

    By the way...

    by Nordling

    this has been one of the most refreahing TBs in a long time. Maybe I'm jinxing the whole thing, but this is the first TB in a while that I can remember reading that most everyone was cordial and most of the posts were insightful and pleasant. Kudos.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 6:57 p.m. CST

    Gotta agree with you Nordling....

    by Dward

    I'm fairly new to Talkback-ing, and this morning I got sucked in by my own emotions to making a snotty and unneccessary political comment on another thread. Almost the instant I sent it, I just thought - 'Well, that was childish. Don't think I'll be doing that again.' I've been loving watching this thread though. Hope I can see more like this in the future.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 7 p.m. CST

    Quick question:

    by Dward

    Is there any real etiquette that's developed amongst the regular posters here beyond the stuff under the 'welcome' banner to the right? If so - where would I find it?

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 7:08 p.m. CST

    Meet the Feebles

    by readyoufool

    Dear God what a disgustingly stupid film that is. And is it just me or does it drag on and on and on. Bought it because I liked Bad Taste and PJ's other movies, but man does it suck. Maybe if I had actually liked the muppets when I was a kid this thing would be more funny. As it is it's like a joke that you laughed at at 2 AM and now, at 2 PM you can't remember why. Oh, and before you flame, some guy up there said that magnolia was his worst...go flame him.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 7:21 p.m. CST


    by readyoufool

    maybe i should pay attention to my own screen name from time to time. Yeah so, Feebles is the worst MOVIE i own. As far as DISC goes, that'd have to be my Cowboy Bebop Limited Edition Perfect Box Set. Why? Because the damned thing freezes in my player. Some of the episodes play and some don't. Can't get any of the extras to play. Pissed me off to no end when I first got it and found out. Oh well, I've still got the VCDs (which, of course, the DVD player will play, but not the DVDs...bah!). Oh, and don't flame that magnolia guy. :) Should have read his post before I posted. sorry.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 7:53 p.m. CST

    The worst DVD I have is Starship Troopers, sent to me by my ex-g

    by Monkeybrains


  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:08 p.m. CST

    Oh shet!

    by kingGirlfriend

    Thanks pavemental, I've looked there before and haven't seen it turn up but I'll try and frequent there more often. There are some movies I have for the commentary, extras, what-have-you; but when it's one of my favorites I'm happy with a good clean ratio correct transfer. Extras are just whip cream and nuts after that.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:29 p.m. CST

    The Australian Region 4 version of Predator is a 2 disc set

    by Joe Mammary

    It's got some pretty cool extras..a documentary where they talk to the cast and crew etc, some special effects featurettes, but it's worth it for the look at Jean Claude Van Damme in the original Predator costume. It's so goddamn ghey you wouldn't believe it. It's got a commentary with John mcTiernan too, so if you've got a multi region player id advise getting it.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:37 p.m. CST

    The worst dvd I own is THE JACKAL.

    by Vegas

    I only own it because it came free with the player, but I had to keep it because of the opening titles. They have music by Massive Attack and graphics by Tomato (Underworld's visual arm), and they're too fucking good to get rid of. Which is shameful, as I'll never watch the movie again in my life.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:38 p.m. CST

    Worst DVDs I have

    by FarfrumWorkin

    Worst Movie: Nosferatu (original) My God is that movie boring! Worst DVD features: Invader Zim, because it's a bootleg and has no features. This series MUST come to DVD. Worst Guilty Pleasure: Spaced Invaders, man is that childish but still cool.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:42 p.m. CST

    worst DVD I own...

    by BiPolarBear

    Destroy All Monsters. Not for the film of course, DAM is a cherished favorite of mine. It was the feelgood movie of whatever year it was released. But the DVD I picked up on the cheap is SO cheap, not only does it lack a menu screen or extras of any kind, it has no chapters. That's right, the whole film in one long chapter. It boggles the mind. Prior to buying this coaster, I'd never even considered the possibility of releasing a DVD without chapter breaks. Christ, even my own homemade VCDs have chapters!

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 8:51 p.m. CST

    worst DVD

    by spathos

    The worst I own was a gift: it was a box set of the entire first season of the Beverly Hillbillies. They did such a crappy job it doesn't even have a menu, and the people who did it were so cheap, they didn't even lisence the title music! Instead of "well listen to a story, 'bout a man named Jed," you get 3 minutes of the same looped banjo music. It sucks a fat one!

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 9:08 p.m. CST

    worst dvd i own?

    by DondarKo

    gotta be I'm Gonna Git You Sucka. no special features, pretty poor video/sound quality, questionable movie. but at the same time, i just can't stop watching it...

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 10:36 p.m. CST

    Giant Gila Monster/Killer Shrews

    by JustinSane

    That's right, I purposely bought the Giant Gila Monster/Killer Shrews double DVD. The cheap-ass Metropolis DVD is a terrible transfer, as if the Meet The Feebles disc from Dead Alive. The previous poster's hatred of the Feebles is puzzling to me. After seeing Dead Alive in '94, I immediately ran out and found Bad Taste and Meet the Feebles and proclaimed Jackson a genius. And I was right.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 11:39 p.m. CST

    sam rockwell is the sexiest tomboy beanpole on the planet

    by Alanna Banana

    i'm just sayin'. is that getting old? i'm still tickled by it.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 11:42 p.m. CST

    Oh, and my worst DVD?

    by Alanna Banana

    Species 2. Well, it's my 16 year old brother's. Hmm.

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 11:56 p.m. CST

    Ju On 1 DVD

    by Narthex

  • Sept. 16, 2003, 11:59 p.m. CST

    Wonderful Days on DVD

    by Narthex

    I just saw Wonderful Days on a Korean Region 3 DVD. Very nice transfer with both a DTS soundtrack and Dolby Digital. Am I wrong that I noticed that the movie was released only two months ago in Korean theatres. You can pick one up at as well as Ju-On: The Grudge.

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 12:02 a.m. CST

    Conan Special Edition

    by Narthex

    Those people who were upset that the U.S. Conan the Barbarian special edition only had a mono soundtrack can fret no longer. I did pick up the Australian region 4 Pal which has everything our version has as well as a nice 5.1 Dolby Digital soundtrack as well. Yes it is the international version of the film.

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 1:19 a.m. CST

    Gotta go with Blade Runner...

    by Latauro

    ...sure, it's the Director's Cut, but they're bringing out that massive version with something like four cuts of the film, aren't they? So nothing actually *wrong* with the DVD, but it's the worst because I'm going to have to replace it. Gotta be a completist.

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 2:23 a.m. CST

    Stay away from most Artisan DVD releases!

    by dr. robert

    Artisan's DVD's are an utter disgrace. Quite a few of their DVD's of "older" films are Full Frame jobs with real shitty transfers (Walter Hill's Extreme Prejudice and Johnny Handsome are just two of many). Those bastards over at Universal recently had the balls to reissue National Lampoon's Animal House for the 3rd time. While we are treated to a better print, GONE are the theatrical trailer, chapters booklet and (most importantly) the original theatrical cover art. Don't you just hate it when they jettison a films original theatrical poster?

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 3 a.m. CST

    Worst DVD eh?

    by Canadian_Psycho

    Probably Mulholland Dr. Loved the movie to death, but the disc has NO good features, just a trailer and some lame-o bios. Hell, there aren't even any chapter sections!

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 3:18 a.m. CST

    Australian DVDs rule.

    by Cash Bailey

    Not only do we have better versions of masterpieces like CONAN and PREDATOR (that original Predator suit is the funniest shit on earth), we also have the BUFFY and ANGEL box-sets (if you're into that sort of thing.) But best of all our MULHOLLAND DRIVE disc has both an interview with Lynch (very amusing as an over-eager young French journalist tries to pry a straight answer out of the ever-elusive Mr Lynch) as well as excerpts from the Cannes press conference.

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 3:26 a.m. CST

    Worst DVD winner is....

    by Alaskanhammer

    I own a scratched copy of "You've got mail" that you cannot watch the final half hour of the film no matter what you do. I didn't pay for this copy and I don't like the film...yet I cannot throw it out...Buahahaha

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 11:13 a.m. CST

    Worst DVD I own?

    by Theta

    Jesus, what a question. The worst in terms of content is my "Godzilla: King of the Monsters" disc. Sony really raped the dog on that one; where's the original Japanese version? Toho can't be THAT bitter. The worst in terms of quality is a double disc I own; "The Last Man on Earth/House on Haunted Hill." "Last Man" is an adaptation of "I Am Legend" and is actually fairly interesting, especially if you've read the book; there are some missteps but overall the movie is surprisingly faithful to the book and has a more accessible hero in, of all people, Vincent Price. "House", alas, just blows. Still the video is atrocious. I wasn't expecting much for five bucks but this looks like a VHS.

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 11:46 a.m. CST


    by outtosea

    Canadian-only release. Horrific, looks worse than my tape copy. Do not buy. Wait or buy the VHS.

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 12:31 p.m. CST

    Worst DVDs...

    by Sick_Boy

    My worst DVD (Film & Features) would have to be Jackie Chan's "Rumble In Hong Kong". According to the box, 'The forgotten Jackie Chan classic. A must for all collectors.' Aye right! Didn't buy it myself, someone I know got it for

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 1:13 p.m. CST

    Another notable release...

    by Krinkle

    Also out this week is Altman's "Images" from MGM, and a R2 British Widescreen edition of Bogdanovich's "Nickelodeon"... And let's not forget that NEXT WEEK sees the release of one of the best and most beautifully shot movies of all time in its first widescreen version: Richard Brooks' "In Cold Blood" Oh, and the worst disc I own is easily that Family Home Entertainment "Final Countdown" disc. Holy COW!

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 1:18 p.m. CST

    My most disappointing DVD ever

    by johnboymiller

    Flight of the Navigator R2 landed on my doormat yesterday (the day after the UK release). One of the greatest films ever made. No special features not even a trailer. Now that's bad enough but it gets much much worse. The soundtrack was dolby 2.0, where oh where is a redone 5.1 soundtrack. The print they used of the film was old and the picture poor. I was genuinly disappointed with such a lack lustre effort on one of the films that defined my childhood. There are some great movies not out on DVD yet, I hope they do better.

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 4:59 p.m. CST

    Shame on Universal! They say consumers' equipment is to blame

    by FortyWatto

    From Universal's statement regarding the defective Python disc: "a small number of DVD players do not have the technical capability to take full advantage of the "Monty Python's The Meaning of Life" disc format..." Huh? Do not have the technical capacity to take full advantage of? I thought those who can't see the disc were those with HDTVs and Progressive Scan players! THIS IS NOTHING LESS THAN SHITTY DVD MANUFACTURING -- and a further demonsration of Universal's complete disregard for quality control. They should accept responsibility, instead of implying that customers' subpar equipment is responsible. At least replacement discs will be availabe... by mid-November! In the words of Mr. Creosote, "I'm gonna throw up."

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 9:14 p.m. CST

    The Worst?

    by mrbeaks

    I occasionally get some bad shit for review, so let's call it a tie between DARKNESS FALLS and AVENGING ANGELO. Worst that I've bought... considering that I don't do sight-unseen purchases unless there's an avalanche of positive buzz around a film, I'd have to go with YOUNGBLOOD, which isn't a terrible movie. Just kinda indefensible. I also own ZARDOZ. Some people say that's an awful movie. Some people are stupid.

  • Sept. 17, 2003, 11:11 p.m. CST

    hey kingGirlfriend...

    by Morty Viventi

    ...I have a bargain-bin Metropolis DVD too. With a trivia game! Yipee! Answer the question right and see a clip pertaining to the question; answer wrong and get a big WRONG zooming out of the ether. Additional features include ONE bio (of the lead actress) and the cover art displayed on the screen.

  • Sept. 18, 2003, 7:18 a.m. CST

    Ho hum...

    by Superdudebobby

    Another Moriarty article brought to you by the letter "I" Sgettin' fun to write parody.

  • Sept. 18, 2003, 9:13 a.m. CST

    re: Morty Viventi

    by kingGirlfriend

    Yeah that's the one! Shit, it's been some time since I played it but I do remember the "attractive" little trivia game they had setup. What a boner. And speaking of boners, the best trivia game has to be the one that accompanies the various TROMA discs. Where if you get an answer right it will show a clip of some boobs. If you get one wrong it shows a clip of some zombie kids catching their lunch. Loyd is the man.

  • Sept. 18, 2003, 12:15 p.m. CST

    another proud limping spectacle of torn narrative tissue

    by BilboFett

  • Sept. 18, 2003, 2:29 p.m. CST

    Meaning of Life DVD and UNIVERSAL...

    by MisterGrimloch

    Universal obviously doesn't give a shit about quality control, as someone posted earlier. the excuse given by the lawyers that wrote their public statement is utterly laughable. i own a top of the line Yamaha Progressive scan player, and while the playback is acceptable for this title, the still framing is fucked up, due to an incorrect authoring job. its a joke how they try to blame consumers for owning sub-par equipment. anyone looking to sink their teeth into the Battlestar Galactica box set, i advise caution, since it too is a Universal title. as for me, i'm going to read some technical reviews of the item before purchasing it. should have done that for the Rocky and Bullwinkle set, and i would have discovered the absurd use of a "video bug" in the lower right hand corner of the screen at the beginning of EVERY SINGLE SEGMENT.

  • Sept. 18, 2003, 4:04 p.m. CST

    Worst DVD is Godfather 3

    by James Bond

    If it didn't come bundled with 1 and 2 I wouldn't own it.

  • Sept. 19, 2003, 12:32 p.m. CST

    Worst DVD

    by stlcat71

    Gotta be between Another Stakeout and Phantoms. Phantoms. Dean Koontz the only writer raped more by the film industry then Stephen King.

  • Sept. 19, 2003, 4:04 p.m. CST

    Rocky and Bullwinkle

    by Cap'n Chaos!

    It pissed me off, too. I thought the whole purpose of buying the set was to keep from having to deal with CRAP like the video bug. It's bad enough they changed some of the stuff (under the guise it was how the late great Jay Ward had wanted it) like the opening credits and new voice-over. Bady disguised, too. Why not just put on the original openings and voice overs without the bugs? People BOUGHT the thing, why do you need to advertise? And if it's in a box that says "Rocky and Bullwinkle and Friends" does it really need to have a new title? Or a different opening? At least when they changed the name of Raiders of the Lost Ark for the video box, they didn't change the title on the actual film.