Buyers Beware: The Little Mermaid Diamond Edition issues

If you’re thinking of purchasing Disney’s latest Diamond Edition of The Little Mermaid, you may wish to check out this video first. While the boosted contrast is arguably a visual improvement over its predecessor, the denouement of Ariel’s “Part of Your World” song has been unmistakably butchered by some sloppy editing. Head on over to the 3:02 mark on the video and notice that the clip of Ariel is flipped with Flounder’s reaction shot. Multiple sources have confirmed this is actually on the disc, it’s not an issue with this youtube video. An issue this heinous Disney will no doubt be issuing a recall, but you may wish to save the time and frustration of purchasing the disc just to go through the rigmarole of an exchange. There’s also a strange error at 3:38 with what looks like a screen tear in the top right of the screen, but that’s less significant (though no less serious) an issue.

UPDATE:

If the information on TheDisneyBlog.com is to be believed, Disney does not consider the egregious errors as a problem. From what I can determine, they will not be issuing a recall, however you can request for a corrected disc.

Per the blog:

“To get your replacement discs, contact Disney via phone or web: 800-723-4763 (U.S.), 888-877-2843 (Canada), http://www.disneystudioshelp.com/ContactUs

Disney will require you to provide your contact information for shipping purposes (name, address, ect) and then ask you a few questions such as where did you purchase the Blu-Ray set?, What is the UPC?, etc. If everything is in order, Disney will send a pre-paid envelope. All you need is to put the discs (2D Blu-Ray and the DVD) inside and mail it back. The replacement program is free. If you’ve downloaded a digital version, you may need to download a new version of that as well.”

So they have the fixed discs, just not the inclination to redistribute them. Just imagine the new generation of kids who will grow up always wondering why there’s a complete lack of synchronization on Ariel’s most emotionally intense moment in the film. What a hideous blemish on an otherwise stellar release of the film that marked the renaissance of Disney animation.

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Oliver Stone teases new “Alexander: The Ultimate Cut” due sometime in 2014

The Theatrical Cut of Alexander was tantalising; the Extended, sublime. To what heights will the Ultimate Cut ascend?

Note: In an interview with Variety this past June, Stone stated he’d cut 20 minutes from Alexander: Revisited (see the link below for more details), though was mum on the specifics. The San Sebastian Film Festival, however, lists the runtime of this new cut at 206, just 8 minutes shorter than the Extended Cut (AKA Alexander: Revisited). Stone has yet to specify whether he’s simply removed material or if he has shuffled things around by expanding some sections and reducing others.

https://twitter.com/TheOliverStone/status/380347645379637248

http://variety.com/2013/film/international/oliver-stone-insists-latest-cut-of-alexander-is-the-ultimate-version-1200502896/

Criterion’s rationale for going dual-format

While Criterion’s decision to release its upcoming November title Zatoichi as a dual-format product may have been construed as a baffling waste at first glance, the company recently explained their motivations for the change. Their reasons are essentially what one would suspect. With the customer base split 60/40 between Blu-ray and DVD, Criterion need only focus on the volume required of a single title, not multiple versions of the same. Beyond allowing for greater efficiency, narrowing their focus to one product (instead of preparing two releases, a DVD and Blu-ray) also reduces the economic risk associated with high volume pressings–that same move which signaled a welcome and substantial drop in the average SRP for their titles.

Criterion was quick to assure its customers that the price point on the Blu-ray would remain unchanged, while the DVD product would be eventually phased out. The company also noted their plans to retroactively repackage older titles in the dual-format.

Though the decision means only an extra disc for someone like me, I nevertheless enthusiastically support whatever plan that keeps Criterion in the black without diminishing the quality of their product (and without needing to raise their prices!). The move may actually increase their customer base, as customers who prefer Blu-ray may lend out their DVD copy to friends and family. But then, does anyone really lend out their Criterions? Perhaps they might now.

What does Criterion’s new business model mean for you?

Debut of Japanese Trailer for Yurusarezaru mono

Pardon me, Mr. Lee Sang-il, but I believe that’s my jaw you’ve got in your directorial lap there.

A remake of 1992’s genre-defining Western, Unforgiven, this isn’t the first time Ken Watanabe and Clint Eastwood have crossed cinematic paths. Name that film!

Can’t wait to get this jidaigeki stateside (it premiers September 13 in Japan).