Will Bueché

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BluRay update

Posted in Personal by Will on Wednesday, May 14th, 2008 ~ 6pm


Given my love of movies, naturally I’d gravitate towards the new high-definition DVD format “BluRay”. Yet I cannot say that I have a high-definition player, because the initial models are far too expensive. What should be a $100 item (and may eventually be so) is currently selling for $350 or more — and many of these players are not even reliable. In fact the best (most reliable) player currently on the market is a game machine called PlayStation which has a noisy fan and no remote control. Clearly the BluRay hardware manufacturers are unprepared.

The BluRay software producers are, however, starting to get into the swing of things, releasing movies and now even television series at prices comparable to — or even the same as — their DVD counterparts.

I’ve only bought two BluRay discs so far. One, last Christmas, was the Blade Runner set. I recently came very close to picking up The Golden Compass as my second BluRay purchase, but it was priced higher than the DVD. Yesterday I made my second BluRay purchase — a pre-order for the first season of the Sarah Connor Chronicles, priced only one dollar more than the DVD set.

I hope that by the time the Sarah Connor Chronicles actually comes out later this year, there will be affordable hardware to play it on.

My criteria for choosing a BluRay disc over the regular DVD is simple: It must be the same price as the DVD (or nearly so), and it must be something that will benefit from being in high-def, i.e. it must be a modern film that has crystal clear visuals to begin with on account of being shot or edited digitally, and further, must be a film that is designed to be a substantially visual experience. Hence my consideration of The Golden Compass — a state of the art film with an emphasis on art design.

So my expectation is that I’ll end up with a very few select films on BluRay, mostly fantasy titles — Underworld, the Narnia films, X-Men 1 & 2, V for Vendetta, Superman Returns (if they release the extended cut), King Kong (the remake) — but for comedies and dramas set in the “real world” that only have visuals on account of the fact that the film would otherwise be a radio show, I’ll stick to DVDs, mainly on account of wanting to be sure that if I bring a movie over to a friend’s house, that they will very certainly have a DVD player, though they will likely not yet have a BluRay player.

Update: BluRay players owned: 0
BluRay titles owned: Blade Runner, Gattaca, Underworld, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (pre-order)

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