Murray Glase

Site Reviewer

User Image


Vital Statistics

Age Group 38
Video Likes I'm easy to please. Just give me a magnificent picture with no hint of grain, pixelization, scan lines or any other indication that I'm not watching a brand new film print. This tends to exclude non-anamorphic and NTSC disks. Colours should be clean and vibrant.
Video Dislikes Pan & Scan is an insult to the filmmakers and to the viewer, and I refuse to see any film that has been destroyed in such a fashion.
Audio Likes For the sake of the film experience, give me a full 360 degree sound stage with wide dynamic range and perfectly balanced sound. For fun (hey, I've got to play with my toys too!), give me localized effects that swirl around the room and lots of deep resonant bass to really shake the house. The musical score (preferably John Williams) should envelope the listener and provide a dominant sound experience.
Audio Dislikes Bass where bass doesn't belong (notwithstanding my above Audio Likes). This will simply lead to dirty, muffled sound. I also hate sloppy editing where sounds come from a different direction to the on-screen action, and foley work that sounds like foley work.
Favourite DVDs A Bug's Life, My Fair Lady, Shakespeare In Love, Babe, As Good As It Gets, The World Is Not Enough, In The Line Of Fire.
Least Favourite DVDs Anaconda - how could anyone with even a hint of artistic sensitivity devote part of their life to this type of drivel?
Most Eagerly Awaited DVDs Star Wars films (of course), the Indiana Jones trilogy (of course), all of Disney's classic animation (for my daughters, of course!), Dances with Wolves, The Mission, The Sound Of Music, every other musical comedy ever filmed, Captain Ron, Cutthroat Island, Lawrence of Arabia, 16x9 versions of Titanic and Pretty Woman.

Opinions About Specific Movies and their DVDs

Titanic A magnificent visual achievement - it's not often you get to see the world's largest ship sinking before your very eyes. Given its price and non-anamorphic presentation I have not seen the DVD on principle.
The Matrix Video game meets Hollywood. I couldn't bring myself to enjoy this film. The central plot device has simply too many silly propositions to accept. I suspect this might have been avoidable in the hands of experienced writers, but this was an early effort from the Wachowski brothers and all the money in the world can't hide that fact. The special effects are great, but we all realize that digital graphics can accomplish just about anything these days. The real trick is to add that capability to films with something further to offer.
Terminator 2 Here's an escapist piece of sci-fi entertainment that I find eminently watchable. If it doesn't make too many observations on the human plight, that's OK with me. It does deliver up a feast of action and sound without taking itself too seriously.
Star Wars Has remained a classic while more recent "blockbusters" have faded because of its strong story line, human characters (even the non-humans) and its rock solid foundations in a clearly defined fantasy realm. Let's hope that George remembers this before he comes out with simply more special effects spectacles. DVD was made for Star Wars!
Godzilla Better than a man in a goanna suit - barely. Obviously the writers ran out of ideas immediately after deciding to steal this old Japanese film legend. They might as well have used a plastic monster to go along with the plastic characters and plastic plot.
Independence Day "Sir, the Americans are organizing a counter attack." - "About bloody time." Yes, finally we have a film that transcends the limits of pomposity and presents the preferred American self image as saviours of the world. This could have been really great film entertainment, but was dragged down by poorly developed plot detail, kindergarten grade dialogue and exaggerated self importance.

Equipment

DVD Player Toshiba SD-K310 , using S-Video output
Display Pioneer SD-T43W1 (125cm) . Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio Decoder Built in to amplifier/receiver . Calibrated with Video Essentials.
Amplification Pioneer VSX-D906S
Speakers Richter Wizard (front), Jamo SAT150 (rear), Yamaha YST-SW120 (subwoofer)

Top 10 DVDs

Cover Art
1. Shakespeare in Love: Collector's Edition (1998)
Cover Art
2. Apollo 13 (1995)
Cover Art
3. Lawrence of Arabia: Collector's Edition (1962)
Cover Art
4. Toy Story 2 (1999)
Cover Art
5. Star Wars-Episode I: The Phantom Menace (1999)
Cover Art
6. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (Deluxe Two Disc Set) (1937)
Cover Art
7. The Sound of Music: Special Edition (1965)
Cover Art
8. A Bug's Life (1998)
Cover Art
9. Close Encounters of the Third Kind: Collector's Edition (1977)
Cover Art
10. Forrest Gump: Special Collector's Edition (1994)

Email Murray G