Friday, March 12

Arrow's British Day of the Dead Blu-ray? As Expected...

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Just like Arrow's Dawn of the Dead Blu-ray, my thoughts here, their freshly released Day BD appears to be digitally noise reduced judging by DVDBeaver's just posted comparison. The same deal applies to Anchor Bay's domestic Dawn and Day Blu-rays as well. All four look virtually no better in terms of detail or color than Anchor Bay's Divimax DVD editions; just without any ugly artifacts caused by upconverting to 1080p. Via DVDBeaver:

"Visual improvement advances from the moderate to more notable in many scenes. Single-layered - it probably could look better - but I don't suspect detail could jump any more than the manner it was produced. It has less noise, tighter color balance and shows some depth - this is probably as good as it is going to get...the Blu-ray is the way to go - what a package from Arrow. Highly recommended!"

Yeah, that's all horseshit. Day of the Dead was shot on very common standard 35mm spherical film stock. Usually used when matting to 1.85:1 widescreen like countless other '80s productions. Even though Day will never look like it was shot yesterday, the Blu-ray's total lack of film grain and hazy greenish-gray dullness is obvious, especially compared to other '80s films shot using the same method given stellar looking Blu-ray presentations. A great example being William Friedkin's To Live and Die in L.A. (DVDBeaver comparison), also shot using 35mm spherical and released in the same year as Day of the Dead.

Friedkin's 1985 film looks incredibly strong on Blu-ray, retaining such a filmic appearance it's like looking out of a window. On the other hand, Romero's 1985 film looks like a blurry eyesore, but not from any aspect inherent to the production. It's not DVDBeaver's fault for the bad transfer, it's whatever idiot tinkered with the image while preparing the telecine, but as noted before the review site continues to be full of it when it comes to having an eye for judging picture quality--even after thousands of reviews. "Highly recommended" my ass; stop whoring your Amazon referrer links and promoting shit splattered onto Blu-ray platters.

7 comments:

Drunketh said...

Too bad about all this... but damn is that coverart sweet or what!?

Jayson said...

Yeah, I like the looks of my Arrow Dawn Blu-ray packaging, but it sucks studios not treating these two right. I wish Blue Underground or Synapse Films gained licenses to release them, then you'd see accurate, truly eye-popping Blu-rays of Dawn and Day (and Evil Dead 2 for that manner)

Heck, I'd even be okay with the movies landing at the doorstep of big Hollywood studio like Universal or Fox. Sure, they'd probably release them with zero extras and on auto-pilot, but I'm willing to bet the picture quality would easily conquer these way overbaked efforts.

Aylmer said...

Hi Jayson, great blog, I've been enjoying reading through it. You really seem to know your shit when it comes to A/V. Do you work in some capacity in the industry or are you just an enthusiast? Again, great stuff here, I'll be lurking often.

Jayson said...

Thanks Aylmer! I also enjoy Unflinching Eye, great mix of topics! Especially your excellent words about the absolutely amazing Martyrs.

I'm just an enthusiast that knows way too much about what I'm enthusiastic about. I'm just trying to be straight up since Blu-ray imports can be pretty expensive to be disappointed with once it arrives.

Anthony1138 said...

I was hoping Arrow's release of Day would be better than Dawn, but had a felling it would just be a port of the AB BD. Totally agree with you about DVDBeaver. I still frequent the site because of the number of reviews they churn out, but I take their opinions about AV quality with a grain of salt. The reviewers over at Blu-Ray.com and DVDTimes.co.uk have a better handle on image quality of HD titles. The review @ DVDTimes is a looks be right on: http://www.dvdtimes.co.uk/content/id/72292/day-of-the-dead.html

KFelon said...

I think I read a post at blu-ray.com that the transfers Arrow used were licensed from Anchor Bay US. A damn shame, hopefully someone elsewhere in the world can release a new HD Master without all the fucking with DNR filters and crap like that.

In the mean time Survival of the Dead comes out in the UK this week on DVD/Blu. Its rumored the North American rights holder is trying to get a summer theatrical release here. I don't know if the Blu is region free, but both DVD and Blu appear reasonably priced at Amazon.co.uk.

Anthony1138 said...

I believe the BD is region B locked, but will verify when my copy arrives. It shipped from Amazon UK on Saturday, so hopefully it'll get here by the weekend.

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