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Author Topic: Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection  (Read 719 times)

Offline singhcr

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« on: March 18, 2017, 11:09:07 PM »
After the warm welcome here I decided to purchase the Blu-ray of this film to see what you all love so much about it.

I love the Criterion Collection. They are serious about giving the best video and audio presentation of the film possible along with many bonus features.

Their slogan is "The Criterion Collection is dedicated to gathering the greatest films from around the world and publishing them in editions of the highest technical quality with supplemental features that enhance the appreciation of the art of film."

This is a high definition transfer directly from the original camera negative. This is the highest qualiity source because it's literally the film used to photograph the cels. The audio is uncompressed from the original magnetic tape masters.

They repair any dirt or damage and leave the film looking like film. The film grain is sharp and intact, and the detail is astounding due to the high quality transfer, the use of the film negatives or the best surviving film elements as the scanning source, and the lack of noise reduction tools that wipe away detail along with film grain in an attempt to make a film based image look like a digital production. These transfers are approved by the director if they are alive so you can rest assured that the movie looks the way that it was intended to be seen.

The screenshots look amazing. I am looking forward to seeing this film for the first time and will let you know what I think!

This disc is region A locked for those of you living outside of North/South America and Asia, but if you can play such a disc you can get it for $18 USD shipped new on Ebay.

http://www.blu-ray.com/movies/Watership-Down-Blu-ray/113617/#Review

« Last Edit: March 21, 2017, 03:33:33 PM by singhcr »
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Offline singhcr

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2017, 11:35:42 PM »
Here are some photos. I can scan the booklet once I have seen the film as I don't want to read any spoilers and ruin it. :)









« Last Edit: March 18, 2017, 11:36:35 PM by singhcr »
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Offline Vesper

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2017, 11:10:28 PM »
Awesome purchase. I would love to purchase it in the future. :) Criterion sure do love there films. I'm glad they do.  :dandelion
« Last Edit: March 20, 2017, 11:11:33 PM by Vesper »
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Offline singhcr

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« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2017, 01:52:01 AM »
Thanks! Fans of the show are truly blessed to have Criterion handle the movie in the respectful, dedicated way that they do.

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Offline Hazel

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2017, 12:15:27 PM »
I definitely need this version. Looks amazing!
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Offline Acacia Heartstrings

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2017, 06:32:31 PM »
Darkling Nocturnal and I have this collection and we are very proud to have it in our possession. It's a good job of collecting content and remastering to digital format. I think I've seen it about 12 or 14 times so far and I still love this feeling. I also managed to get the language in Latin Spanish, which is not easy.    :gilia

I would also like to have extra content for the animated series, such as interviews with voice actors like John Jurt, Richard Adams, animators and more. But it only has children series commercials that I do not care about XD
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Offline singhcr

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2017, 06:56:02 PM »
I just saw it today for the first time and I am glad that I got this edition. The animation, particularly the backgrounds, are gorgeous. Just gorgeous. I haven't seen something like this before. The score is wonderful and I do feel for the rabbits as they try and journey on to find their new burrow.

It's quite dark (figuratively and literally in both content and visuals/color) which I like. I do think, personally, that the story could be fleshed out a bit more and the political aspects weren't as strong as I have heard them to be. Fiver's ability see the future wasn't really explained well, but I took it as being guided by Lord Frith.

It could be better, but I still like it for its originality and wonderful animation, especially the opening titles about the origin of life.

The ending where Hazel dies and goes to heaven was quite moving and brought tears to my eyes. "Haven't you been feeling tired lately?" "Don't worry, they'll be all right." He fought very hard to give a better life for his friends as well as his offspring and his reward was at hand as he was free of his old, dying body. It reminded me of my grandmother's passing two years ago.

I am glad Criterion released this movie. Despite its flaws it is a joy to watch and a piece of history to be preserved. There's not going to be anything like this again.

Do you think I should read the novel next, or see the series?
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Offline Chipster-roo

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2017, 12:16:20 AM »
Thank you for all the pictures you posted :)

I'm glad you enjoyed the film, and I agree with most of what you say.

I'm sorry about your grandmother :(

I think you should probably read the book next.  It tells mostly the same story as the film, although with more details (the political aspects are described in more detail, for example).  The series is also good, although the plot is extremely different from that of the books and film.
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Offline singhcr

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« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2017, 02:52:01 PM »
Thanks and you are welcome! Yeah, it was hard to lose her. But the way she died was like Hazel where she was now free of pain, so I try and see it in that perspective.

I will try reading the book next per your suggestion.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2017, 03:03:57 AM by singhcr »
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Offline Acacia Heartstrings

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« Reply #9 on: March 22, 2017, 05:27:35 PM »
You definitely should read the book as Chipster-roo says, the series is not bad, but it has a lot of changes and it's childish, even so I love the cartoon of Watership down.

I have to add that it is true that the film of Watership Down is wonderful in all aspects because the backgrounds look like paintings for museum picture, the music is memorable and the characters are very good.

Particularly whenever I get to the end of the movie, when Hazel dies, I have to gather all my courage to see the scene because of the sad and wonderful that is that end.
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Offline singhcr

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2017, 03:05:28 AM »
I did get the book from the library and will start reading it soon.

That ending is both sad and sweet at the same time. A long life and a happy ending indeed. :fiver3
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Offline Hawkbit

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Watership Down Blu-ray: Critertion Collection
« Reply #11 on: April 02, 2017, 01:18:52 PM »
@singhcr

Exactly my thoughts on the blu-ray.  You'll never get a better transfer out of this film given its age.  I shared my thoughts on amazon.com when it first came out.  People must've liked what I wrote since its the #1 review for the criterion blu-ray of WSD.  Picture is the best its ever been.  Audio is meh--played it through pro headphones and its still hissy and lacks substance below 400hz.

Now if only the uncut Plague Dogs ends up on blu-ray. :)

Offline pushmipullu

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« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2017, 03:44:53 PM »
@singhcr

Another thing you could do is listen to the 2016 BBC radio play version of the story. I put recordings up in its thread in the Honeycomb section. It's about two hours long, and outside of the book it's probably the most faithful media adaption.

Offline singhcr

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« Reply #13 on: April 04, 2017, 01:36:43 AM »
Hawkbit: Short of a 4K UHDBD transfer with HDR (film has a far larger color space than HD video and 4-perf 35mm film tops out at roughly 4K resolution, I totally agree. Even if it never makes it to 4K Blu-ray, I am still very happy with what we got.

I was very impressed with the subdued yet rich colors and particularly the sharpness of the film grain, always a sign of a good transfer. Criterion doesn't ruin movies with DNR (digital noise reduction) to make film look like video and destroy the detail in the process. When you can see dust in between cels during the credit sequences, you know you've really got a gem of a transfer on your hands.

I am going to use 8-perf 35mm film for my animation cel and while I can't use HDR to get a wider array of colors and the superior contrast of the film, it gives about 8K worth of resolution. Mmmm....

pushmipullu: Thanks for the suggestion and taking the time to upload the recording! I am actually in the process of reading the novel as we speak.

« Last Edit: April 04, 2017, 01:38:33 AM by singhcr »
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