Great Movie, Bad Collector's DVD
Derek K. Cheng | Silicon Valley, CA | 03/03/2000
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Okay... so if you're only interested in the movie, of course this is quintessential John Woo melodrama-action. Chow Yun Fat is the master of matches mouth moving and handgun hysterics. But the DVD is badly flawed. The subtitles are too big as the other review said, but they're also late (show up after the dialogue) and inaccurate (its text from the original) *I'm Chinese so I know--I just turn it off*. In addition, the description is incorrect--there's no "additional footage" or "behind the scenes stuff." Only the lightest production notes on the cast and crew--stuff you could get from IMDB. Also the transfer is a bit faded and lacks real richness that DVD is suppose to provide. In addition, the annoying startup promo (which lasts over 3 minutes) before the actual menu starts can't be skipped. I had rated this as 3 stars, but changed it to 2. I still love the movie, but feel a little jipped--especially since I bought the entire trilogy. Where's Criterion when you need them?"
Fantastic movie, HORRIBLE subtitles
Derek K. Cheng | 03/27/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is just awesome. It's not the action packed thriller you'd normally expect from John Woo, but it's one of my all time favorite movies. Chow Yun-Fat offers yet another brilliant performance in this drama about an aging gangster (Ti Lung) torn between his best friend (Chow Yun-Fat) and his brother (Leslie Cheung). What keeps this product from a five star rating is NOT the film itself. The subtitles are so horrible, I can't understand how any professional film distributor could release this is as a finished product. Spelling mistakes and ridiculously poor grammar litter this otherwise great film. Who did they hire to translate this? Whoever it was obviously had only known the English language for approximately 3 weeks. In addition, the subtitles often appear AFTER the dialogue is spoken- which can ruin the effect of a couple of key scenes (if you've seen it, you'll know what I mean).Besides the subtitles, the DVD itself is nothing special. In fact, its not even average features wise. It has basic chapter selection, an ad for other film's the "Media Asia Group" offers, and the trailer for the film. That's it. The "About The Film" section isn't even worth mentioning, it's just extremely brief information on those involved with the film. You would get much better information (and in more detail) from the IMDB (www.imdb.com) or any fan site.The subtitles alone were so bad that I was tempted to return this, but since there is no other version available that I am aware of, I guess there isn't much choice. As a big fan of both Chow Yun-Fat and John Woo, this product was very disappointing. It's a shame- this movie deserves much better."
A Five Star Film Ruined By Poor Transfer To DVD
Robert Cyr | Deerfield, IL United States | 02/20/2000
(2 out of 5 stars)
"A wonderful movie overall, but the subtitles are terrible and distract from enjoyment of the film.The letters are too big, and often only four or five words are fitted per line, so an additional line of subtitles is necessary, taking up the bottom 25 to 30% of the screen. Can't see the movie for the words! The same holds true for the sequels.I'd buy another copy if only they'd fix this aweful production flaw.DON'T BUY IT! Wait for an improved edition! Too high a cost for such a faulty product."
Where did the FORREST GUMP MUSIC come from??????
Robert Cyr | 06/11/1999
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Let me just say, I love this film. Now that that's out of the way , let's talk about this DVD.I had seen this film many times before buying it on disc, and I was very dissapointed by two things. One. They changed alot of the original music and replaced it with movie themes from, yes, Forrest Gump, Speed, and one or two I couldn't recognize. This is unforgivable. Second. In an attempt to take advantage of DVD Dolby Digital sound, they've remixed the gunfire to constantly come from the rear channels, which is both unrealistic and extremely dissorienting. As much as I love hearing a great stereo mix, this film was not meant to be heard this way, and this is a very sloppy attempt to create true stereo sound.The picture, on the other hand looks better than previously available, but I found myself having to turn my black level all the way down to make the picture look natural. It is very bright, to the point of washing out color.So the 2 stars is for this DVD presentation, not the film. A Better Tomorrow is the movie that launched a thousand two fisted gun battles, and caused every actor in Hollywood to secretly want to be Chow Yun Fat."