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The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Tue Aug 24, 2010 1:59 pm

Dammit, dammit, sonuvabitch . . . I forgot that Season Six of Lost came out today. Another $45 down the toilet.


The review on Hell Ride were pretty negative, which by itself means nothing. However, the kinds of reviewers who should have liked it did not, which is never a good sign. That is what is interesting about Piranha 3D -- last time I checked, it was around 81% at Rotten Tomatoes, and many of the positive reviews were from people who would normally dismiss that sort of film. The irony is that the Weinsteins refused to screen it for critics, and that may have hurt the box office last weekend. I am curious to see how it does this weekend.


I rented The Professional (1981) from Netflix (the Jean-Paul Belmondo film, not the butchered American version of Leon) and it was unspectacular, but it does have a pretty fine (if brief) car chase with Belmondo visibly doing his own driving for most of it.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Wed Aug 25, 2010 1:19 pm

Apropos of absolutely nothing, I have "Ride On" playing as I am driving, and that may be my favorite AC/DC song. Straight up blues progression with a great solo in the middle.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Wed Aug 25, 2010 2:27 pm

Scary thought: That is also my favourite AC/DC song.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:20 am

I also had "I Can See for Miles" and "Fire" come up back-to-back while shuffling and had this thought: while no one will argue about Keith Moon's status as one of the greatest rock drummers of all time, has Mitch Mitchell ever gotten his fair acclaim? Like Moon he had an uncanny knack for knowing just where to place a fill to keep a track alive.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Thu Aug 26, 2010 2:33 pm

Didn't Rolling Stone rank him as the twenty-third greatest drummer of all time? Even still, I can see why he would be overlooked early on in his career. It must be difficult for anyone to get noticed when playing alongside Hendrix.

Have you started watching Season 6 of Lost?
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Fri Aug 27, 2010 10:03 am

Not yet. The basement project officially ends today, so I will start this weekend.


I could not find the Rolling Stone article that you mentioned. There was a reader poll that ranked Mitchell #11.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Fri Aug 27, 2010 11:56 am

I believe the Rolling Stone article was written back in 2004 or 2005, so it will be tricky to find.

I did find another forum that posts the Rolling Stone's Top 100 Drummer list. Mitchell shows up as 23. The site:

http://www.ultimatemetal.com/forum/maiden-downunder/182376-rolling-stone-list-top-100-drummers-actually-pretty-decent.html
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Fri Aug 27, 2010 8:26 pm

That link is blocked on my work laptop -- I will try later on a different connection.



I did go and see Piranha 3D this afternoon. It was a fun movie if you are in the right frame of mind -- it is about as over-the-top as you can get. Given the fact that all of Alexandre Aja's films have been released theatrically in edited versions and unrated on video, I hesitate to even imagine what footage may have been cut out of this one. It is one of the "hardest" R-rated films that I have seen in a while. If they release an "uncut" version on video, it may make Cannibal Feroux look mild in comparison.

The tongues may be even more in the cheeks with this film than with Dante's original -- it manages to toss off quick references to the original Piranha and the movie that inspired it before the opening credits roll. (The Piranha reference is pretty subtle, but if you have watched the original recently it should be evident.)

The most disappointing thing is that Aja planned cameos from Joe Dante and Jim Cameron as boat drivers, but it never happened. That would have been awesome. There is a cameo by another familiar actor that is pretty amusing, however.

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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Mon Aug 30, 2010 5:58 pm

I attempted to watch the movie this weekend, but only got to the harbour attack scene. I had gone to the movie before having to pick up some friends from the airport, but then their flight arrived early, causing me to leave the theater early.

I must have lived a very sheltered life, because I do not recall any summer breaks like that!

The movie was fun enough, but I'm not sure that I will pay again to watch the movie in full in the theater. I might just wait for the 2D Blu-ray.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Tue Aug 31, 2010 6:16 pm

Summer breaks? That is an average weekend where I live!


You left just as the carnage reached its maxiumum. I am curious what you think when you get to the finish. Do not worry about seeing it in 3D, though. As a post-process conversion job, it is as good as it can get, but the process still has too many flaws. Piranha 3D was not shot with 3D cameras, but it was planned for 3D and shot with that in mind. (Alexandre Aja did not want to have to fight the bulky and complicated 3D cameras on set, so he shot with regular cameras, but they also shot plates at the same time to aid the 3D conversion process.) So unlike hasty crap conversions like Clash of the Titans, it is showing the conversion process at its best. But it is still not good enough. Too often the effect is like paper doll cutouts (like the early shot when Elisabeth Shue holds the Tazer into the camera -- her arm looks like a paper cutout.) Also, the process cannot handle when an object in the background is visible through an object in the foreground. For example, there is a shot through a chain link fence when the background element "pops forward" toward the foreground. It is also distracting in a shot on the island when the young girl walks behind some reeds -- she appears to keep jumping forward and backward in the frame as she passes behind the reeds.

I wanted to give the process a fair shot at its best, but I decided that I will avoid all post-process 3D conversions. (And honestly, I may avoid many that were shot in 3D anyway. I saw Toy Story 3 in 2D and do not feel that I missed anything.)


I got my copies of Gremlins and Death Race 2000 today. I will let you know how the latter looks. I also finally picked up the remastered Gladiator and watched it over the weekend, and it is a gorgeous disc.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Tue Aug 31, 2010 9:41 pm

Apparently I need to apply for a green card and move to your neck of the woods. Mind you, if I'm being completely honest, I'm not sure how many of those weekends I could handle.

I was not impressed with the 3D processing for Piranha. Though, to be fair, I have not been impressed with Real3D in general. That is why I think I will just hang off for the Blu-ray. Still, it would have been nice to see the movie in full.

I was just thinking of Gladiator this weekend, but I didn't get around to picking it up. Glad to hear it is a worthwhile purchase. I wonder if the old versions have been removed from store shelves?
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Wed Sep 01, 2010 3:52 am

They have not. Supposedly the remastered version should have a yellow UPC, like Paramount did with the corrected jSaving Private Ryan discs. However, so far that has not been the case. The only noticeably difference is that the words "2-Disc Set" appear in the lower right corner of the slipcover on the old version, and do not appear on the new version. That is not an "official" way of telling the difference, though. I took a chance on it and indeed got the newer one. The Digital Bits did just report that Paramount is finally shipping them out with the yellow UPCs, so if you wait a bit longer you can be sure.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Wed Sep 01, 2010 4:18 am

O.K., Asylum may have just topped themselves:

http://www.highdefdigest.com/news/show/Platinum_Disc/Disc_Announcements/Mega_Piranha_Announced_for_Blu-ray/5340

Be sure to check out the trailer at the bottom!
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Wed Sep 01, 2010 3:17 pm

But what about:

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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Wed Sep 01, 2010 4:41 pm

Already an oldie, but still a goodie. I am not sure what is better; the giant shark grabbing the 747 or the giant piranha grabbing the helicopter.


Hopefully this will not ruin anything, but the Mega Piranha movie seems to have anticipated what the ending of Piranha 3D hints at.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Wed Sep 01, 2010 6:18 pm

Doesn't ruin anything, since I haven't seen the ending to either, damn it.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Thu Sep 02, 2010 11:11 am

No, I actually gave away the twist at the end of Piranha 3D -- you will understand once you see it.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Thu Sep 02, 2010 11:37 am

There are giant piranha's?
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Thu Sep 02, 2010 1:34 pm

You will have to see it. Let us just say that Christopher LLoyd's "Professor Exposition" character returns at the end for a payoff.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Thu Sep 02, 2010 5:06 pm

If it involves time travel, I'd almost be willing to pay the $15 to go see the movie again.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Fri Sep 03, 2010 3:59 am

There is a video of a great interview with DP John Leonetti about shooting in 2D vs. 3D and the post-conversion process on this page:

http://hollywoodinhidef.com/2010/08/piranhas-dp-leonetti-on-3d-conversion/

His explanations on why they shot in 2D make a lot of sense. He even acknowledges the problem that I mentioned about objects passing behind other objects. I still think that the process utlimately fails, but I can definitely agree with his reasons for doing it that way.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Fri Sep 03, 2010 4:12 am

I also watched Death Race 2000 with all of the extras and it is a great disc. The interviews are a mixed bag, depending on how interesting the individuals are. For instance, I would have expected the interviews with the production designer and the car designer to be the most interesting, but the designers were not very good speakers. Surprisingly, the interview with the costume designer is one of the best -- she is pretty funny. Also, they interview the author of the original story, Ib Melchior, and his interview is very good. (Often interviews with authors tend to be weak since they can be quite inarticulate when talking about their own works, but not so in this case.)

There are some interesting stories from the participants that reveal that Corman may be the cheapest man in history, but he is an honorable one nonetheless. For instance, Ib Melchior said that he had a clause in the contract for the sale of his story that said that he was to get paid for any sequels. When Corman made Deathsport -- which has nothing whatsoever to do with Death Race 2000 -- he went to Melchior and gave him a cheque, saying that he never would have made a movie like Deathsport if he had not have made Death Race 2000 first. Corman also showed up three decades later to give Melchior money when he sold the rights for the recent remake.

The editor also explains that Corman hired a sound effects editor that she warned him not to, since the individual in question had a drinking problem. Corman told her not to worry about it, but she was right and Corman ended up having to fire the man. He went to her and gave her a $200 cheque for trying to warn him. She said that she may be the only person in history to get a bonus from Roger Corman!


Great stuff. Get that disc and Piranha if you get a chance.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Tue Sep 07, 2010 8:15 pm

Sounds interesting, but I've never been a big fan of Death Race 2000. I'm a bit picky when it comes to car movies.


Last edited by Seamaster on Wed Sep 08, 2010 9:43 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Iago on Wed Sep 08, 2010 4:45 am

You may still enjoy watching some of the stories about it. For instance, the cars (which Corman estimated cost about $4000 each) often would not run, and assistant director Lewis Teague points out many shots where they pushed the cars to the top of a hill and coasted them down -- in those shots, the cars may only be going about 10mph!

Speaking of cars, did you ever see the Jean-Paul Belmondo film that I mentioned earlier -- The Professional? It may not be worth a purchase, but it is certainly worth a rental if you are willing to sully your player. The car chase is only about five minutes long, but it is a very good one, with Belmondo visibly doing most of his own driving.
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Re: The Refugee Audiophile thread #1

Post  Seamaster on Wed Sep 08, 2010 9:47 am

And that's the problem I have. It is all too obvious that the cars are staged and merely pushed along at parts. I shouldn't let that kind of thing ruin the movie for me, as I thought the acting was quite good (in a purposely camp sort of way), but we all have challenges in life.

I have not seen The Professional. I suppose I could rent. I could always thoroughly clean the disc before inserting.
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