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The Godfather Blu-ray Coppola Restoration


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#1 Fran Kuhn

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 02:19 AM

So my wife just gave me the new Coppola Restoration box set for a birthday present. I tried to get the first disc to play in the original theatrical ratio (1.85:1) but, no matter what I do, I can only get 16:9. I'd be shocked if this was the only option, especially after paying $90 for the set. Is it possible there is no 1.85:1 option?

BTW just saw Memoirs of a Geisha last night, also on Blu-ray, also played in 16:9 only. Is there some conspiracy to make all Blu-ray versions 16:9?

-Fran
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 03:49 AM

1.85 and 1.78 (16x9) are SO close in size that half the time, a 1.85 matte barely shows up on most 16x9 monitor. At various times, Coppola has even preferred that "The Godfather" movies be shown 4x3, so if these new versions are 1.78 instead of 1.85, it's probably because Coppola didn't feel the need to matte them any further. But if the disk says that the transfers are 1.85, then they probably are, it's just that the thin black letterbox necessary to matte 1.78 to 1.85 is being lost in the edges of the 16x9 TV set.

Every review I can find online says that "Memoirs of a Geisha" is a 2.40 Blu-Ray release (it's the same transfer as was used for the DVD, which is 2.40). See:

http://bluray.highde...sofageisha.html
http://www.moviefrea...ay_geisha.shtml
http://www.avforums....?showmedia=9044

You may want to check your TV and make sure the image is not being zoomed into to fill 16x9 no matter what.
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#3 Fran Kuhn

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 10:56 AM

1.85 and 1.78 (16x9) are SO close in size that half the time, a 1.85 matte barely shows up on most 16x9 monitor. At various times, Coppola has even preferred that "The Godfather" movies be shown 4x3, so if these new versions are 1.78 instead of 1.85, it's probably because Coppola didn't feel the need to matte them any further. But if the disk says that the transfers are 1.85, then they probably are, it's just that the thin black letterbox necessary to matte 1.78 to 1.85 is being lost in the edges of the 16x9 TV set.

Every review I can find online says that "Memoirs of a Geisha" is a 2.40 Blu-Ray release (it's the same transfer as was used for the DVD, which is 2.40). See:

http://bluray.highde...sofageisha.html
http://www.moviefrea...ay_geisha.shtml
http://www.avforums....?showmedia=9044

You may want to check your TV and make sure the image is not being zoomed into to fill 16x9 no matter what.


Thanks, David. I have checked to be sure the settings are correct on both the TV display and the player (they appear to be) The packaging on both The Godfather disc and Goodfellas Blu-ray (which I also received) doesn't indicate any aspect ratio. In the past, most DVDs seemed to have a Widescreen designation somewhere on the box. Oh well, now they'll have something else to sell--the all-new WIDESCREEN version-- down the road LOL.

-Fran

EDIT: Actually, the Goodfellas Blu-ray says "16:9 1.85:1"
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#4 Mike Williamson

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 02:14 PM

I've heard that Warner Bros. is doing all their 1.85 movies as 1.78 Blu-Ray discs which I find frustrating. It's not the end of the world but it's still not quite right. When you have something as precise as Gordon Willis' compositions, I want to see them exactly as intended. You'd think it would have sunk in after years of letterboxing, just get it right and black out 10 lines on the top and bottom. Some of the other studios are letterboxing to 1.85, so I guess it's not hopeless.
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#5 Fran Kuhn

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:58 PM

I've heard that Warner Bros. is doing all their 1.85 movies as 1.78 Blu-Ray discs which I find frustrating. It's not the end of the world but it's still not quite right. When you have something as precise as Gordon Willis' compositions, I want to see them exactly as intended. You'd think it would have sunk in after years of letterboxing, just get it right and black out 10 lines on the top and bottom. Some of the other studios are letterboxing to 1.85, so I guess it's not hopeless.



Mike,

That's what I was thinking. I mean, here's what's being sold as the "ultimate" restoration of a great film. I'm really surprised it's not being presented exactly as originally shown in cinemas.

-Fran
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#6 Scott Larson

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 05:08 PM

Unfortunately the flat panel displays of today retain the concept of "overscan" from old CRTs. Even though they are perfectly capable of displaying each pixel precisely, most displays stretch the image several percent anyway.

It's possible to convince some displays not to do this by telling them they're connected to a computer. When I do this with my display it will then have a one-to-one pixel ratio without overscan with my Blu-ray and HD-DVD players. However if my computer sends it interlaced video that makes it turn the overscan back on, as if I'm lying to it about being connected to a computer.

Many television networks rely on overscan to remove distracting lines around the edges of their HD screens. NBC has a yellow line on one side for example.
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#7 Mike Williamson

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 10:16 PM

Hey Scott, I just got a Sharp Aquos 32" LCD which has been great so far, and it has different "view modes" (or something like that) you can select. One of them appears to be a slightly overscanned version and another an underscanned version, though it's hard to know whether the "underscan" is actually displaying the whole picture or not. I don't know if this function is available on most HD sets or not, but hopefully it's something that's being incorporated so that you're not stuck with overscan if you don't want it.
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Visual Products

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Tai Audio

rebotnix Technologies

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Rig Wheels Passport

The Slider

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS