Green Dragon (2001)
|Year Of Production||2001|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Timothy Linh Bui|
Roadshow Home Entertainment
Hiep Thi Le
Billinjer C. Tran
Phuoc Quan Nguyen
Trung Hieu Nguyen
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.85:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||English for the Hearing Impaired||Smoking||Yes|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
The story is told simply, with dignity and a gentleness in keeping with the soft spoken Vietnamese language in which most of the dialogue is spoken. The actors play a restrained but credible performance and the stars of the movie are undoubtedly the ordinary people coming to grips with camp life, laying old demons to rest and trying to look forward to an uncertain future. The Americans are portrayed as firm but fair, with a job to do, and the camp soldiers are very different from the brash, young Turks portrayed in many of the earlier Vietnam movies (with the notable exception of The Deer Hunter). The refugees exhibit a simple dignity whilst grieving over the death of their country, to which most can never return. And that's about it - nothing specially spectacular, no special effects, yet the film held my attention without tedium for its 2 hour duration. At a time when refugees are demonised as being potential terrorists or avaricious economic migrants and held in maximum security concentration camps, it is a gentle and thought-provoking glance at an alternative philosophy. Whether real life conditions were as depicted in this film, I am not in a position to say, but certainly the 134,000 Vietnamese who passed through such camps and subsequently settled in the USA would know!
The film is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and is 16x9 enhanced.
The film suffers a little in detail most likely as a result of being ported to a single layered DVD but is more than adequate for the gentle feel of the film. There is satisfactory shadow detail in the not infrequent night scenes and just an instance of particularly noticeable low level noise at 12:26 on some dimly lit stairs.
Colours were well rendered - the nature of the refugee situation meant that there weren't too many bright colours splashed around but they were realistic, particularly in the rendering of the Asian skin tones, and there were no chroma artefacts of note.
Apart from mild edge enhancement, for instance along Adie's shirt at 47:37, there weren't any film-to-video artefacts. The film was very clean and there were very infrequent film artefacts.
English subtitles are essential for the feature, unless you are fluent in Vietnamese as this constitutes about 80% of the spoken dialogue. Fortunately, as they are burned in, they were a very accurate portrayal of the spoken word and also appropriately highlighted Foley effects for the hard of hearing. An optional English subtitle selection selected the few spoken English scenes.
The disc is a single layered DVD-5 and so has no layer transition point.
There was just the one (the back cover mentions a second Dolby Digital 2.0) soundtrack in Dolby Digital 5.1 surround - most of the language spoken was Vietnamese with limited English intervals.
The dialogue was very clear and directed to the centre speaker, whilst ambient music and effects were directed to the front mains.
Audio sync appeared spot on.
There were a few well known numbers such as Bing Crosby's rendering of White Christmas but most of the musical score by Jeff and Michael Danna was confined to appropriate background atmospheric music containing suitably ethnic gongs and bamboo flute which added considerably to the feel of the feature. There were a few home grown patriotic Vietnamese songs which I wasn't able to understand.
The surrounds provided continuous notable background ambience and added to my enjoyment of the movie - it was interesting how the sound of the clap stick varied as to the camera angle, panning as the camera angle changed from left rear then to front left to right - a nice mix. I couldn't hear any notable input from the subwoofer but couldn't be bothered to get up and feel its speaker cone to see if was alive - it wasn't needed.
|Surround Channel Use|
1:48 of the original cinematic trailer in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The video was good but a little on the soft side.
The audio was excellent and I had no significant criticisms.
The extras were confined to the theatrical trailer and our DVD-5 release didn't have space for the R1 dual layered disc extras.
|DVD||EAD 8000 Pro, using Component output|
|Display||Panasonic PT-AE300E Projector onto 250cm screen. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to DVD player. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Amplification||Theta Digital Intrepid|
|Speakers||Martin Logan - Aeon Fronts/Script rears/Theatre centre/ - REL Strata III SW|