Korn-R-U Ready (Unauthorized) (Warner Vision) (1999)
|Year Of Production||1999|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||1,2,3,4,5,6||Directed By||None Given|
Bill Von Boening
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.33:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
By interviewing people connected to the band and its five members, a great deal of material is covered in 48 minutes, and most of it is interesting stuff if you're curious about the genesis of Korn, or any rock band that has gained a wide audience from humble beginnings. Some dude called Pancho, who looks like a young Tom Araya from Slayer, leads us through the interviews and video clips as he sits on the floor in some anonymous room. The whole vibe of the piece smacks of amateur hour home video. Anyone familiar with titles like Metallica's Cliff 'Em All, not to mention the countless other documentaries that attempt to chronicle the major players in the underground music scene, will have no trouble embracing Korn: R-U Ready.
The documentary roughly covers the band's history, from its early days in Bakersfield, through to the success it has become today. Following Pancho's emphatic announcement, "This is the Korn story. Are you ready? Are you f***ing ready!?!", video footage on the street outside a Korn gig at the Apollo venue in Harlem, NYC, captures a few fans talking about Korn and their mounting excitement at attending the show. Cut to Bakersfield, Southern California. This is where the members of Korn originated. (At this point I guess I should mention who the musicians are: Jonathan, Head, Fieldy, David, and Munky.) Described as a "s***hole" by the ever-informative Pancho, Bakersfield apparently has several underground bands playing hard music in the local clubs around town. Tattoo artist Bill Von Boening, a friend of Korn, comments on the state of the scene there as well as his involvement in his own band project Swag which is, according to him, "kind of in the Korn style, but not really". Ted Stryker, a DJ at KROQ, discusses Korn in terms of their attitude, lyrics (he loves Jonathan's lyrics), and their current popularity. Holly Queen talks about the bands that play at the club she works in (Jerry's), reinforcing the notion that Bakersfield is fertile ground for new bands inspired by the success of Korn. Fred Johnson, an associate of Korn's first incarnation LAPD, recalls fond memories of LAPD gigs and the antics of its members. Other topics touched upon include Korn's connection to Limp Bizkit, touring anecdotes, and a host of miscellaneous facts about the band members. Spliced between and through each segment are still photos of Korn; the editing style used throughout is suitably frenetic. I feel sad for Pancho, who was shot in black and white and forced to sit on the floor. Big things are headed Pancho's way...MTV, Academy Awards MC, who knows.
Even though I only own one Korn album, Follow The Leader, and don't plan on buying any more (10 years of listening to thrash and death metal has made Korn's simple guitar riffing too bland for my tastes), Korn R-U Ready is still interesting enough as an informal look at the band's roots and eventual progression to the world stage.
The level of sharpness and detail was acceptable for a handicam effort such as this one. The street scenes, still photos and studio generated graphics fared the best. At worst, the entire background behind some interviewees was overexposed and bleached out. Ted Stryker's hair even suffered some damage. As expected, shadow detail was generally poor and blacks were average at best on the live footage. The studio video imagery was excellent.
Colours were also inconsistent, varying from nicely saturated views of New York at night, to false and washed-out colours during the daytime interviews and sample shots of Bakersfield and Huntington Beach.
The dirge-like sludge metal used as background music for the documentary is basically mono. The bass kicks gained noticeable oomph from the subwoofer if the volume was up loud enough, but generally the music was down low in the mix.
The live speech starts to go out of sync at around chapter 3, roughly 17 minutes into the feature. The latter chapters are quite obviously out of synch. Screams of Korn fans recorded by the video camera microphone are quite often distorted. The monologues were always intelligible, however.
|Surround Channel Use|
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The video quality varies from great to woeful and the audio is mainly mono.
|DVD||Pioneer DV-737, using Component output|
|Display||Loewe Ergo (81cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Denon AVD-2000 Dolby Digital decoder.|
|Amplification||Arcam AV50 5 x 50W amplifier|
|Speakers||Front: ALR/Jordan Entry 5M, Centre: ALR/Jordan 4M, Rear: ALR/Jordan Entry 2M, Subwoofer: B&W ASW-1000 (active)|