Marilyn Manson-Demystifying the Devil (Unauth) (1998) (NTSC)

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Released 30-Nov-2000

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Documentary Featurette-Mrs. Scabtrees 2nd Performance
Interviews-Cast-Exclusive Gidget Glen Interview
Rating Rated R
Year Of Production 1998
Running Time 85:21 (Case: 90)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Programme
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Chris Nicholas

Warner Vision
Starring Corey James
Brian Warner
Brad Stewart
Case Amaray-Transparent
RPI $34.95 Music None Given

Video (NTSC) Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 1.0 (112Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 480i (NTSC)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes, During

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

Plot Synopsis

    Marilyn Manson: Demystifying the Devil an Unauthorised Biography is a documentary that was produced between the launch of the book 'The Long Hard Road Out Of Hell' and the release of the highly successful album Mechanical Animals.

    Before watching this disc I admit that I did not know a great deal about Marilyn Manson (Brian Warner) or the early part of his musical career. This feature consists of a number of interviews combined with home movie footage and some video of the band's early shows that provides a great deal of information relating to the formation and rise to fame by the band. The numerous people interviewed on this disc include former band members, club owners, other performers and Marilyn Manson's former long term girlfriend.

    As this is an unauthorised biography, there are no interviews with Marilyn Manson, current band members or representatives from his record company. Luckily, the feature concentrates only on the early days of the band and seems to provide a balanced look at those times.

    If you are a huge fan of the band you may be aware of most of the information provided on this disc, but seeing the original people involved and some of the early promotional material will be interesting.

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Transfer Quality


    A great deal of this feature is comprised of home movie footage and video taken by amateurs at early concerts. Consequently, significant artefacts are visible during much of the transfer.

    The NTSC full frame transfer is presented in a non-16x9-enhanced aspect ratio of 1.33:1.

    The transfer is consistently soft and at no stage shows high levels of detail. Some interview segments that have been shot specifically for this documentary are of higher quality but it is still very obvious that these have been transferred from an analogue source. During much of the footage, transferred from presumably VHS masters, significant low level noise is present and initially distracting to the viewer. Many segments exhibit extremely poor levels of shadow detail due to the source material. To compensate for the poor shadow detail some segments, such as at 3:58, have artificially had the brightness increased. This results in a greyish washed-out segment showing no blacks and emphasizing low level noise.

    The quality of colour varies throughout depending on the source material used. The more current segments have fairly accurate colours but much of the low quality material appears poorly saturated as you would expect.

    Numerous MPEG artefacts are visible during the transfer, for example at 1:06, but as the viewer becomes accustomed to the various low quality segments these artefacts are easily ignored.

    There are minimal examples of aliasing present during the transfer, with one of the most significant examples visible at 23:40. At no stage are these artefacts distracting to the viewer.

    The most consistent artefact visible during the transfer are analogue tape tracking errors. These occur throughout the transfer and during segments from all sources including the higher quality material recorded for this production. Some examples of these errors can be seen at 15:15, 18:15, 24:01, 26:39, and 30:55. Due to their frequency of appearance, these errors are quite distracting to the viewer.

    As all material appears to have been sourced from video there are no film-based errors.

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


    While only a low quality audio track is provided and is adequate to convey the presented information, the inclusion of a stereo mix would have been appreciated.

    A single mono English Dolby Digital 1.0 112 kbps mix is provided.

    During interviews in the feature the dialogue is clear and easy to understand at all times. During many of the low quality live segments, the audio is muffled and distorted as you would expect for material sourced from a consumer camcorder.

    At no stage during the transfer were any audio dropouts detected.

    The surround channels and sub channel was not utilised at any stage.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use


    The two extras are included as chapters appended to the main feature instead of a separate title set that we usually associate with extras. While this does not make any significant difference to the viewer it does show the minimal effort that went into transferring and authoring this title.


    The main menu is unusually presented letterboxed at an aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and only provides chapter selection.

Mrs. Scabtree's 2nd and final performance (2:01)

   This is low quality concert footage presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 with a mono Dolby Digital soundtrack.

Interview Gidget Glen (20:34)

   This interview with former band member Gidget Glen (Brad Stewart) is exclusive to the DVD. It was filmed after the initial release of the feature. Gidget Glen was fired from the band during his time in a drug rehabilitation clinic and he discusses this as well as his initial work with the band. The segment is presented at an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 with mono audio and is reasonably low quality. Obvious cross colouration artefacts can be seen at 104:51 and an audio sync problem can be seen at 105:55. Towards the end of this segment, some severe audio distortion and dropouts can be heard but these appear to be inherent in the source material and not the transfer.

R4 vs R1

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

    As this is an all-region NTSC disc, all versions would appear to be identical.


    Marilyn Manson: Demystifying the Devil an Unauthorised Biography is a feature that would appeal to anyone interested in the early days of the band.     The video quality varies significantly throughout the transfer due to poor source materials and mastering problems.     The mono audio track is functional but would have been improved with a stereo mix.     The extras are simply a continuation to the feature and could have been easily integrated with the feature.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Anthony Kable (read my bio)
Tuesday, June 26, 2001
Review Equipment
DVDToshiba 1200, using S-Video output
DisplaySony KP-E41SN11. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationFront left/right: ME75b; Center: DA50ES; rear left/right: DA50ES; subwoofer: NAD 2600 (Bridged)
SpeakersFront left/right: VAF DC-X; Center: VAF DC-6; rear left/right: VAF DC-7; subwoofer: Custom NHT-1259

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