679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

Discuss DVDs and Blu-rays released by Criterion and the films on them. If it's got a spine number, it's in here. Threads may contain spoilers.
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Moe Dickstein
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#51 Post by Moe Dickstein » Fri Aug 16, 2013 9:02 pm

Only other way you might do it is 21/22 and 23/24/25 because that keeps the longest disc shorter.

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movielocke
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#52 Post by movielocke » Fri Aug 16, 2013 10:00 pm

that's possible, but I think you'd not want to have the documentary on Disc 7 or 8, you'd want it on the first disc or on the last disc, doing it that way leaves more space for extras on the final disc.

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Moe Dickstein
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#53 Post by Moe Dickstein » Fri Aug 16, 2013 10:10 pm

Depends on if they go for logic or most efficient use of space :)

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MichaelB
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#54 Post by MichaelB » Sat Aug 17, 2013 8:44 am

It's probably worth adding that many (if not all) of these titles will be in 2.35:1, so the encodes would require less space than they would if they were a screen-filling 16:9. That can make a pretty substantial difference to the overall bit budget when dealing with four hours per disc.

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movielocke
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#55 Post by movielocke » Sat Aug 17, 2013 6:41 pm

all are 2.35:1, according to the Criterion website.

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captveg
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#56 Post by captveg » Sun Aug 18, 2013 12:49 am

MichaelB wrote:It's probably worth adding that many (if not all) of these titles will be in 2.35:1, so the encodes would require less space than they would if they were a screen-filling 16:9. That can make a pretty substantial difference to the overall bit budget when dealing with four hours per disc.
Exactly. 4.5-5 hours is pretty common for 16:9 TV shows on Blu-ray (see: nearly every Warner TV Blu-ray set) which take up more encoding space, so this really shouldn't be an issue.

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manicsounds
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#57 Post by manicsounds » Sun Aug 18, 2013 10:14 am

I have no idea who would buy this but Kadokawa Japan is releasing their own Zatoichi BD boxset on November 8th, same month as the Criterion.

The Kadokawa box will have the first 18 movies made by Daiei. (None of the Toho movies) with a retail price of over $500

I can't see any person in Japan in their right mind picking this up instead of the Criterion....

kekid
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#58 Post by kekid » Sun Aug 18, 2013 12:45 pm

How big is the public for this item any way? One has to be a devoted fan and fairly rich to buy it. Criterion has lots of options as to what they release. I am personally surprised they decided to invest so much effort into this. Either they believe there is a large audience out there for it, or there is some influential individual in Criterion organization who loves it. (Looking at the sheer beauty of packaging, the latter seems to be the likely reason). If the conjecture that the lack of many Eclipses this year is explained by the resources that went into this release is valid, it reflects the serious trade-offs Criterion made. I am grateful for many items Criterion released this year, and do not wish to complain. But if I was posting in "Why don't they release only what I want..." I would have said why did't they release some more Eclipse boxes (they would have had some very attractive choices) instead of this gigantic box?

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joshua
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#59 Post by joshua » Sun Aug 18, 2013 2:09 pm

kekid wrote:How big is the public for this item any way? One has to be a devoted fan and fairly rich to buy it. Criterion has lots of options as to what they release. I am personally surprised they decided to invest so much effort into this. Either they believe there is a large audience out there for it, or there is some influential individual in Criterion organization who loves it. (Looking at the sheer beauty of packaging, the latter seems to be the likely reason).
You are probably right, but I'm guessing that they have the sales numbers on the HVE discs and they see that Zatoichi sells. I know I'm upgrading and I already own the HVE and Animeigo discs. If I can turn around the individual discs for seven dollars apiece, I'll basically break even on my pre-order.

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Minkin
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#60 Post by Minkin » Sun Aug 18, 2013 4:20 pm

kekid wrote:How big is the public for this item any way?
I think you might be surprised by the great interest for the Zatoichi set. There seems to be a lot at play with this release. Samurai film collectors are not to be undervalued - even if it means double dipping for them, I think they all know this will easily be the definitive release of the series (which is a beloved one). Then there's just the artful approach of the set. I've shown it to several people who absolutely hate samurai films, but they'd even consider buying it, since they love the design (they love how each film has a different artist interpret it), art, approach, etc (thus they might think of it as a coffee table book).

Lastly, though it might be an odd way to gauge popularity (though I assume Criterion uses it), the Zatoichi set seems incredibly popular with the facebook "like" crowd. Looking at the page for Zatoichi, it has 3,385 likes, which is far more than any of the other coming soon titles (2nd is Cassavetes - 1,086, then Fassbinder - 769). Even many titans of popular Criterions can't even compete with Zatoichi's numbers. Here's a few I found: Seven Samurai - 2,675; The Royal Tenenbaums - 1,595; House - 4,784 (the only one with more that I could find); The Seventh Seal - 1,382. So it seems that the Zatoichi set, despite its price, will most likely prove to be a great investment for Criterion. I know that I will be asking a BN store to hold a copy for me ahead of time (hoping that it will be part of sale).

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zedz
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#61 Post by zedz » Sun Aug 18, 2013 5:05 pm

I think there's no doubt that there is a big audience for the Zatoichi films. Criterion's real gamble is whether or not they will want to rebuy all of the films for the sake of an HD upgrade / opulent packaging. Which is no doubt why they've pulled out all the stops on the latter front (and why idle speculation that 'if only they'd released these in separate DVD and Blu editions the packaging would be much smaller and would fit on my shelf better' seems rather foolish to me - the packaging is key to marketing this set - there's no way Criterion would release an 18-disc DVD set for the Christmas market in shy, retiring, slimline packaging).

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swo17
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#62 Post by swo17 » Sun Aug 18, 2013 7:50 pm

zedz wrote:idle speculation that 'if only they'd released these in separate DVD and Blu editions the packaging would be much smaller and would fit on my shelf better' seems rather foolish to me
The width of the packaging looks surprisingly economical to me--maybe the width of four standard cases, i.e. the same as the Dreyer or Bergman sets. (The discs themselves will only take up about 2-1/2 case widths.)

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#63 Post by matrixschmatrix » Sun Aug 18, 2013 7:56 pm

Yeah, do you guys remember the shoebox that the AK100 set came in? This is a miracle of economy compared to something like that. From the look of it, it may not be any wider than the BBS set, so I think they were very conscious of space concerns (and packaging costs, since pretty much everything has been on the as-thin-as-possible side lately.)

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captveg
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#64 Post by captveg » Sun Aug 18, 2013 11:43 pm

I have friends who collected DVDs years ago but have since been lukewarm to Blu-ray and have even sold a good portion of their DVD collections in the last few years immediately say upon this announcement that they will be buying it.

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Yojimbo
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#65 Post by Yojimbo » Sun Aug 18, 2013 11:57 pm

I was fortunate to acquire .avi formats of the complete set when it was otherwise unavailable - and looked likely to remain so.
I might not have even considered buying this new set if I didn't have the .avis, as they were complete blind buys, but I've been more than pleasantly surprised by the consistently high quality of the filmmaking - no matter how familiar - and repetitive - the story lines.

Its just a matter of when, rather than if: hopefully they won't become OOP, too quickly.

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Yojimbo
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Re: Forthcoming Lists Discussion and Random Speculation Vol.

#66 Post by Yojimbo » Mon Aug 19, 2013 12:02 am

domino harvey wrote:This is exactly the kind of release the BN sale was made for. Most of us won't be seeing it for a long while if it doesn't come out within that time frame!
You can double that time if you order it in a B&N sale
(the video-revolution equivalent of 'Waiting for Godot', judging by the experiences of most forum members) :(

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Lowry_Sam
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#67 Post by Lowry_Sam » Mon Aug 19, 2013 12:42 am

Anyone familiar with Criterion's catalog (very heavy on samurai films) & their releases (look at which Kurosawa titles they've upgraded) wouldn't be surprised that they'd release such a box. I'm sure there's plenty of fanboys (beyond just samurai flicks) around the world to make this a success. I will only begrudge this release if they don't put as much effort into future packages that would interest me (ie. career-spanning box of either Chaplin, Bergman, Kurosawa (again), Fellini, or Godard).

Now that we can see what Criterion can really do, they have a high bar to jump for those Hitchcock 9 silents, Dekalog & World Cinema Foundation boxes.

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krnash
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#68 Post by krnash » Mon Aug 19, 2013 12:45 am

Lowry_Sam wrote: Now that we can see what Criterion can really do, they have a high bar to jump for those Hitchcock 9 silents, Dekalog & World Cinema Foundation boxes.
Not to stray too far off topic, but has it been confirmed that the Hitchcock 9 will go to Criterion?

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#69 Post by matrixschmatrix » Mon Aug 19, 2013 12:48 am

Haha, how many times are you going to bring up the Chaplin box set idea? They've already put more effort into making features for Chaplin releases than they did for this set, they're doing an amazing job with him- the primary thing about the Zatoichi movies, aside from just making them available at all, is getting them all at once at a relatively cheap price (and a gorgeous package.) For titles that can be sold individually, like major works by every single director you name, that strategy doesn't make a lot of sense.

AK100 made some sense as essentially an EAH collection, and if they want to keep doing that, they're welcome, but it doesn't make a lot of sense to ask them to do anything similar for every major director, particularly because they rarely have the rights to even a majority of a given director's filmography. Though I wouldn't object to an Ozu box with blu upgrades for all the Eclipse stuff.

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tenia
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#70 Post by tenia » Mon Aug 19, 2013 1:22 am

They could do nice Bergman, Ozu, Godard, Melville, Powell / Pressburger and Renoir boxsets.

However, individual releases are certainly more pratical financially speaking for customers, I guess. It's easier to chip $25 here and there, allowing you to spread the sales over the months, instead of making you take $200 aout of your pocket in one time (even if it's cheaper per title). And with, indeed, great names on the cover, it helps to sell whereas one single release for the Zato is logical in a way that you wouldn't sell it as individual release, because the usual customer just doesn't know enough.

And the AK100 still has Madadayo as an exclusive, which I'm still waiting to get as an individual title (hopefully through an HD upgrade).

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MichaelB
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#71 Post by MichaelB » Mon Aug 19, 2013 1:49 am

krnash wrote:
Lowry_Sam wrote: Now that we can see what Criterion can really do, they have a high bar to jump for those Hitchcock 9 silents, Dekalog & World Cinema Foundation boxes.
Not to stray too far off topic, but has it been confirmed that the Hitchcock 9 will go to Criterion?
Half of them are owned by Studio Canal...

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knives
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#72 Post by knives » Mon Aug 19, 2013 12:09 pm

...And public domain in the US which is something Criterion has tended to shy away from.

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MichaelB
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#73 Post by MichaelB » Mon Aug 19, 2013 12:17 pm

The restorations aren't in the public domain, though.

Benshi2
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#74 Post by Benshi2 » Wed Aug 21, 2013 6:35 pm

Looking at the photos of the set does anyone feel some worry about the effect of the packaging on the individual disks? Having bought other dvd sets with this type packaging I wonder whether some of the disks are going to arrive damaged-putting them in and taking them out-cardboard edges scratch-especially for double-sided disks! However the disks in the photo look single sided to me. I suspect that people are going to transfer their disks to alternate packaging-keepcases, etc.

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Moe Dickstein
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Re: 679 Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

#75 Post by Moe Dickstein » Wed Aug 21, 2013 9:30 pm

The Blus at least should be fine. This is better more secure looking than the Universal Hitchcock set and all those discs have been fine. Blus have a very rugged anti scratch coating.

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