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PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 10:20 pm 
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Ecstatic Beaver


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 2:39 am 
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For an easy comparison I put up images comparing the various aspect ratios for certain scenes on Facebook, which allows you to jump between them quickly. It should be public so you don't need an account to look.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 2:36 am 
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Quote:
Criterion then goes over the various aspect ratios the film has been shown in. The interesting 5-minute feature gives a brief history of the widescreen format and why Columbia chose to show the film (and others) theatrically in various ratios. It then compares many sequences between the three provided here (1.33:1, 1.66:1, and 1.85:1) and points out the advantages and disadvantages.

Still seems like over-kill. Does Criterion explain why they (not Columbia) chose to offer three different aspect ratios on this DVD/BluRay?


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 8:45 am 

Joined: Wed May 18, 2011 9:37 am
Fred Holywell wrote:
Quote:
Criterion then goes over the various aspect ratios the film has been shown in. The interesting 5-minute feature gives a brief history of the widescreen format and why Columbia chose to show the film (and others) theatrically in various ratios. It then compares many sequences between the three provided here (1.33:1, 1.66:1, and 1.85:1) and points out the advantages and disadvantages.

Still seems like over-kill. Does Criterion explain why they (not Columbia) chose to offer three different aspect ratios on this DVD/BluRay?


There is a special feature dedicated to just that issue. I also have a foggy notion that they mention there was heated discussion about it in their office amongst employees. (Wexner talk?)


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 2:18 pm 
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Fred Holywell wrote:
Still seems like over-kill. Does Criterion explain why they (not Columbia) chose to offer three different aspect ratios on this DVD/BluRay?

The issue is that they don't know which ratio was preferred by either Kaufman or Kazan, and it's also hard to tell by framing since the film was obviously framed for at least both 1.33:1 and 1.85:1, which they breakdown in the feature. It's also suspected that 1.66:1 may have been considered while framing shots as well since the framing in this ratio looks excellent. I think they see the 1.66:1 as an excellent compromise but at the end state they'll leave it for the viewer to decide.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 8:22 am 
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I've only seen the film in 1.33:1 so I'm glad they included 2 more options. I'm anxious to see it in 1.66:1.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:44 pm 
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Chris - your review is excellent, and I love the selection of screenshots for easy comparison between the ratios. Am I alone in thinking that 1.33:1 looks the best? I'm not usually someone who's of that opinion regarding headspace (2.35:1 4 Months, 3 Weeks, 2 Days for life), but the compositions in this film seem to really benefit from the breathing room.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 4:39 pm 

Joined: Wed May 18, 2011 9:37 am
They've posted the essay on aspect ratios on Youtube


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:33 pm 
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mfunk9786 wrote:
Am I alone in thinking that 1.33:1 looks the best?
Nope. I agree. The film's protagonist is so boxed in, that I think the squarer look even works thematically; I think the difference is most striking where his arms are stretched along the back of a pew--the body's composition looks less like a horizontal line in 1.33:1 and more like a cross thanks to the head room, perhaps echoing the diminutive cross on the wall-mounted font in the background. (I'm not saying he's a blatantly allegorical Christ-on-a-cross, but the evocation may still be there.)


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 12:04 am 
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DVD Savant hasn't posted his review yet, but here are some interesting comments he made on the ar situation, when reviewing the Sony disc back in 2001.
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The film looks fine but the chosen aspect ratio is 1:37 flat. I've seen the picture at festivals, at the very formal Academy and at UCLA, and it's always projected at 1:85 widescreen. The titles are composed in horizontal blocks of text. In 16mm flat prints, microphones frequently intruded into the upper frame, especially in the scene of the interrupted meeting in the church. Those shots must have been slightly blown up here. The movie looks much better when matted to widescreen, with tighter compositions.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 3:32 pm 
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Fred Holywell wrote:
DVD Savant hasn't posted his review yet, but here are some interesting comments he made on the ar situation, when reviewing the Sony disc back in 2001.
Quote:
The film looks fine but the chosen aspect ratio is 1:37 flat. I've seen the picture at festivals, at the very formal Academy and at UCLA, and it's always projected at 1:85 widescreen. The titles are composed in horizontal blocks of text. In 16mm flat prints, microphones frequently intruded into the upper frame, especially in the scene of the interrupted meeting in the church. Those shots must have been slightly blown up here. The movie looks much better when matted to widescreen, with tighter compositions.
What does Glenn Erickson know! :wink: Interesting addition to the conversation, though. Thanks for quoting.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 3:34 pm 
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Jeff wrote:

Damn, I thought that was news of the Criterion release of an obscure Wakamatsu film.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 5:54 am 
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DVD Savant review


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