AFL-2003 Premiers: Brisbane Lions AFC (2003)

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Released 30-Sep-2003

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Sports Main Menu Audio & Animation
Audio Commentary-Choice Of Three Commentaries
Rating Rated E
Year Of Production 2003
Running Time 154:23 (Case: 150)
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (82:55) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By None Given
Aust. Football Video
Visual Entertainment Group
Starring None Given
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $34.95 Music None Given

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (128Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (128Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement Yes, sponsors everywhere
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    The lead-up to the 2003 AFL Grand Final was quite different to the previous year for Brisbane. They had not looked as dominant as before, finishing 3rd in the home and away series before being beaten by Collingwood in the first week of the finals. After beating Sydney in the preliminary final, the Lions had several key players either out or under a cloud due to injury. Collingwood meanwhile had a similar preparation: winning a week's break before a home preliminary final against a South Australian team. As in 2002, one of their players was suspended for the Grand Final. This time it was key position player Anthony Rocca, for using an elbow to the head of a Port Power player. In 2002, Brisbane were warm favourites and won a close, hard-fought game. In 2003, Collingwood went into the season decider as frontrunners.

    Well, if you don't wish to know the score, look away now.

    The 2003 Grand Final was as one-sided as the previous year had been close. Brisbane looked switched on from the opening bounce, while Collingwood struggled to get going throughout the match. The Pies never looked like winning, and trailed all day on the scoreboard. Their only run of goals came in the dying seconds of the match, reducing the eventual margin to 50 points.

    Much has been written about the game, by analysts with more insight than me, so I won't speculate too much on the reasons for Brisbane's overwhelming victory. I would tend to lay much of the blame in the hands of the Collingwood coach and match committee, who had a pretty dirty day all round. The absence of Rocca was telling, but I doubt if he would have made 8 goals difference. It was instructive watching a taped episode of Talking Footy after the match, in which Kevin Sheedy and David Parkin both emphatically chose Brisbane to win, for reasons which became apparent during the game.

    This was Brisbane's third successive flag, resulting in the (over) use of the Americanism "three-peat". So, in 2004, will they get the "four-play"? Only time will tell.

    In terms of material outside of the actual match, only the Channel 10 pre-match review and the post match celebrations, including the presentations and the lap of honour are included. The pre-match entertainment is not included, nor is any of the quarter or half time material. Each quarter is a single chapter and no chapter indexes are included within any of the quarters, except for the third quarter where a chapter mark is positioned at the layer change.

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Transfer Quality


    The match is presented in the original digital TV aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and is 16x9 enhanced. There was also a non-digital broadcast which, I believe, was in 1.56:1 (that is, 14x9) and non-enhanced. This disc only includes the 1.78:1 version.

    The video is very sharp, much like the original digital broadcast. There is little in the way of problems with shadow detail, except when the camera pans into an area shaded by the grandstands and the camera takes a moment to adjust. This is in the source material of course. There was no noticeable low-level noise.

    Being a Grand Final, things are pretty colourful, and colour is accurately rendered. The players' uniforms, the grass (whether real or painted) and the colour in the crowd all seems realistic.

    Now for the bad news. There are significant MPEG artefacts, mainly in the form of the Gibb Effect. Every figure has a halo of noise, surrounded by rogue pixels caused by overcompression. Macroblocking occurs frequently where the encoding cannot keep up with the movement of the players. Graphics suffer from dot crawl, as do the tops of the goalposts at 65:00. These problems are noticeable almost all of the time. The only occasions on which the video looks like a digital broadcast is in close-up: where players are shot with long lenses in close-up, and the background is out of focus, the image is quite impressive. Ditto when showing Leigh Matthews in the coach's box. There is only 6.65Gb of data present on this dual-layered disc, meaning that there was room for a less compressed video stream to be included

    Aliasing is present during the early part of the broadcast on the structures of the grandstand, though this is not generally noticeable throughout. There is some cross-colouration when the crowd is shown from a high vantage point.

    No subtitles are provided.

    This is a RSDL-formatted disc, with the layer change occurring at 82:55. This is positioned 10:53 into the third quarter where the goal umpire (Philip McCrevice, according to Rex Hunt) is signalling a behind, and is somewhat disruptive. This layer change would have to have been positioned between quarters to be less intrusive, which may not have been possible without greater compression of the material.

    I think we would have been a lot better off with two dual-layered discs, or a flipper, in order to reduce the amount of compression and thus minimise the MPEG compression artefacts. As it stands, this is not particularly pleasant to watch.

Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


    There are three audio tracks on this disc. The default audio track is the original Channel 10 commentary in Dolby Digital 2.0, and the two additional tracks are the 3MMM and 3AW radio broadcasts, the latter of which seems to be mono.

    The default track sounds reasonable, with clear dialogue and good audio sync. Dolby Pro Logic gets some surround action happening, though the subwoofer does not seem to do much. In stereo or surround mode there is not much crowd ambience. The crowd noises seem distant and I did not feel as though I was there.

    The 3MMM track also sounds pretty good, and is clear throughout. It seemed to me at times that the audio was not properly synced to the video. I thought that it was slightly ahead of where it should be. Not that it was ahead of the play, but it seemed that the reaction times of the commentators was a little too quick. However, judging by the final siren, all three commentaries seemed to be roughly in sync. Again, there is some surround information extracted using Dolby Pro Logic but the same caveats apply as for the Channel 10 commentary.

    The 3AW track comes from an AM radio station and thus is almost certainly a mono track. I did not notice any stereo effects in the track. Dialogue is clear and easy to understand, though there is some distortion, particularly when the commentators are yelling into the microphone.

    The Channel 10 commentators are Stephen Quartermain, Anthony Hudson and Robert Walls. 3MMM had James Brayshaw, Brian Taylor, Dermot Brereton and Sam Newman. 3AW had Rex Hunt, Gerard Healy, Rex Hunt, Tony Shaw, Rex Hunt, Robert Dipierdomenico and Rex Hunt. Rex is an acquired taste to say the least, though he did have me laughing a few times. Either of the radio commentaries is, in quality of commentary terms, preferable to the Channel 10 team.

    I should note here that this disc is rated Exempt From Classification, but both of the radio commentaries contain some mild profanity. Also note that if either of the alternative tracks is selected, the programme commences from chapter 3, which is immediately after the toss, and the commentary reverts to the default track after the conclusion of the match.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use


Main Menu Audio and Animation

    The menu features some footage from the match with audio of the Brisbane club song.


    This section has game stats, scorecard, team stats and goal kickers for the match, plus the 2003 ladder. As usual for this distributor, there are a couple of spelling mistakes.


    There is censorship information available for this title. Click here to read it (a new window will open). WARNING: Often these entries contain MAJOR plot spoilers.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    This material is only available in Region 4, so this is a no-brainer. However, and this is guesswork on my part, some copies of this disc I have seen in stores have a slightly different cover and make no mention of the two alternative commentaries on the back cover. I suspect that as the DVD was out in stores very quickly after the match that early copies did not have these commentaries. So be sure to check the back of the DVD before purchase.


    Enjoyable for Brisbane supporters and anyone who didn't want Collingwood to win (and isn't that most of us?), this disc is let down by the video quality. Hopefully the 2004 Grand Final will get better treatment.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Philip Sawyer (Bio available.)
Wednesday, March 24, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-S733A, using Component output
DisplaySony 86CM Trinitron Wega KVHR36M31. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to DVD player, Dolby Digital, dts and DVD-Audio. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationYamaha RX-V596 for surround channels; Yamaha AX-590 as power amp for mains
SpeakersMain: Tannoy Revolution R3; Centre: Richter Harlequin; Rear: Pioneer S-R9; Subwoofer: JBL SUB175

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No Extra Commentaries - Gold Coast Guy (read my bio)