Individual Entry


Universal’s House of Horrors: Part 1 of 3


All right, you’re thinking, I’ve seen it all. I’ve marvelled at the exceptional level of detail in Spider-man 3, I’ve been wowed by the fantastic grain reproduction in Silent Hill, and I just can’t imagine an image that looks more all-round perfect than Ratatouille. Well, gentle readers, I present tonight, for the viewing pleasure of the hardened technophile, an inside look at the other end of the spectrum: the transfers so repulsive that you’d actually go out of your way to make sure people didn’t accidentally see them and somehow “get the wrong idea” about high definition. Over the course of the next three posts, I’ll be delving into Universal’s swamp of catalogue releases, and we’ll be asking ourselves how some of these travesties actually made it out the front (or back) door in the first place.

Attention, BD fans: don’t go celebrating the assimilation of Universal into the Blu-ray umbrella just yet. This is what you have to look forward to.

Being John Malkovich
(Universal, USA, VC-1, 18.9 GB)

To be fair, this is already a really dingy, unappealing film to look at, but it shouldn’t look this bad.

Being John Malkovich Being John Malkovich Being John Malkovich

Brokeback Mountain
(Universal, USA, VC-1, 21.1 GB)

This one isn’t even a catalogue title, so why in the name of all that is pleasant does it look like this? Nincompoop reviewers talk about the amazing landscapes on display as if that somehow means the transfer is any good.

Brokeback Mountain Brokeback Mountain Brokeback Mountain Brokeback Mountain Brokeback Mountain Brokeback Mountain

Cat People
(Universal, USA, VC-1, 19 GB)

This one looks like someone took a giant dump on the disc stamper and then had it pressed. People won’t actually believe an HD transfer can look this awful until you show it to them. This is pretty much as bad as it gets.

Cat People Cat People Cat People Cat People Cat People Cat People

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2008 at 6:45 PM | Comments: 3
Categories: Blu-ray | Cinema | HD DVD | Technology



I've only been reading for a couple of months so would find it useful for further insights on what is right/wrong with what is being shown so that I may then apply that knowledge on my own in the future.

Posted by: Anthony, June 23, 2008 3:14 AM


I think I mentioned here sometime back, that when I compared the old DVD against Malkovich's HD DVD, I found hardly any difference. Its the least difference I've seen in the jump from SD to HD in about 160 HD DVDs & BDs.

Posted by: Bleddyn Williams, June 23, 2008 2:05 PM


I can't quite believe how shit Cat People looks. Is it actually any better than the standard DVD?

Posted by: , June 23, 2008 11:04 PM

Comments on this entry and all entries up to and including June 30th 2009 have been closed. The discussion continues on the new Land of Whimsy blog:


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