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 Post subject: How Now Brown Blu-rays
PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:15 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 10:25 am
Location: SLC, UT
Some early Criterion Blu-ray releases from 2009 and 2010 have been discovered to have a problem where the bottom of the disc eventually turns brown and the disc has difficulty playing starting at around the 51 minute mark. (Or sometimes it is the extras that have difficulty playing.) The following titles have been acknowledged by Criterion as having been affected by this issue:

The Seventh Seal (June 2009)
Pierrot le fou (September 2009)
Paris, Texas (January 2010)
Howards End (February 2010)
Summer Hours (April 2010)
M (May 2010)
Walkabout (May 2010)

See also this post from Blu-ray.com for a list of less commonly problematic titles or here for a more comprehensive listing of potentially affected discs.

Even if these discs played fine when you purchased them, you might want to check them again and see if any issues have developed. Don't just check the color of the disc though. Fast forward through the features and extras to see if the disc freezes up at any point. Make note of specific problems with any affected discs, and email your findings to mulvaney@criterion.com. Please be patient in awaiting a response, as they are getting a lot of emails about this.

Criterion has been responding to individual emails about this matter as follows:

Quote:
I hope this email finds you well. Thank you for writing in regarding a discoloration and playability problem with one or more of your Criterion discs. We are aware of this issue, which appears to affect a number of titles pressed four or five years ago at a pressing plant that we no longer use, and we are currently working on a solution. Please be assured that we are dedicated to your satisfaction and will be replacing defective discs. As soon as we have a system in place to handle exchanges efficiently, we will send out a link with instructions on how to receive replacement discs. Thank you for your patience and understanding while we work through this issue.

All the best and thanks for supporting Criterion!

Jon Mulvaney

See also this more detailed response.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 5:03 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:56 pm
j. alfred prufrock wrote:
Anyone else having problems with the blu ray of Days of Heaven freezing around the chapter 14 mark, or with the main menu loading properly? I use a Sony BDP S350, and have never had problems before.

Yes, I had problems around Chapter 14 or so (47 minute mark) where it skipped forward about twenty minutes.

I took it back to the store I bought it from and got a replacement, but the exact same thing happened, so this may be a universal problem with the disk. I have never had this problem with any other blu-ray, Criterion or not.

I am taking it back tonight and will try to address this with someone at Criterion tomorrow.

Anybody else having these problems? It also said disk inoperable when I first inserted it.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 5:27 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 16, 2008 4:43 pm
Hmmmm. I'll check this out tonight and report back. I'm sure Criterion will make good for $5 per replacement disc. ;)


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 5:39 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 10:25 am
Location: SLC, UT
I had a similar problem with Part 2 of Che. I mailed back the bad disc for them to inspect. They couldn't figure out why it wasn't working but sent me another copy that worked fine.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 6:24 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2007 5:42 pm
brianrsteel wrote:
Yes, I had problems around Chapter 14 or so (47 minute mark) where it skipped forward about twenty minutes.

I took it back to the store I bought it from and got a replacement, but the exact same thing happened, so this may be a universal problem with the disk. I have never had this problem with any other blu-ray, Criterion or not.

I am taking it back tonight and will try to address this with someone at Criterion tomorrow.

Anybody else having these problems? It also said disk inoperable when I first inserted it.


I got the Blu-ray yesterday and watched it last night without problems. After reading your post I rechecked it. I had no problems around 47:00 but in chapter 14 at 54:39, when the planes enter the screen, I get a brief moiré pattern in the far left of the screen. (I use an Oppo BDP-83.) Otherwise it's perfect, and what a gorgeous disc it is!!


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 8:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 8:48 am
Location: Atlanta
No problems here, using a Momitsu BDP899 (or rather using the 899 firmware on a Curtis Mathes player). I also can't spot the moiré at 54:39 after a couple attempts... I guess if I'm just not seeing it, I should stop looking for it ;)


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 3:30 am 

Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 10:22 pm
My copy had the exact same problem you described!


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 6:31 am 
wax on; wax off
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Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2004 4:46 pm
Location: Chico, CA
markhax wrote:
brianrsteel wrote:
Yes, I had problems around Chapter 14 or so (47 minute mark) where it skipped forward about twenty minutes.

I took it back to the store I bought it from and got a replacement, but the exact same thing happened, so this may be a universal problem with the disk. I have never had this problem with any other blu-ray, Criterion or not.

I am taking it back tonight and will try to address this with someone at Criterion tomorrow.

Anybody else having these problems? It also said disk inoperable when I first inserted it.


I got the Blu-ray yesterday and watched it last night without problems. After reading your post I rechecked it. I had no problems around 47:00 but in chapter 14 at 54:39, when the planes enter the screen, I get a brief moiré pattern in the far left of the screen. (I use an Oppo BDP-83.) Otherwise it's perfect, and what a gorgeous disc it is!!


Be sure to let perkizitore know about your Oppo troubles--he may be able to help.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 6:45 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 10, 2008 3:29 pm
Location: OOP is the only answer
I am planning on buying this soon, i will keep you posted if i experience any problems!


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 7:01 am 

Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2008 9:35 am
Mine should arrive today and I have an Oppo Bluray. I'll let you know what happens at the referenced points in the disc.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 12:19 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 5:02 pm
My response from Jon:

I'm very sorry to hear your DAYS OF HEAVEN Blu-ray is not playing properly.

You may want to double check that there are no fingerprints on the disc, and try it again. We've seen less than 1/4 fingerprint make the main menu motion disappear. If you do see any fingerprints, you can use a little soap and water or even your shirt to clean them off. Or you can hold the disc under running water, and with clean hands, use your thumb to clean the surface by rubbing outward from the center only. Dry the disc thoroughly by sandwiching it between several layers of paper towel. Do not rub the disc!

If the disc still proves defective, I would be happy to replace it for you. Simply mail the Blu-ray, along with a copy of your address, to my attention at the address below. As soon as I received the defective Blu-ray I will send you a replacement!

I hope this is helpful! Thank you for your patience and for supporting Criterion!

Best,
Jon Mulvaney

The Criterion Collection
215 Park Ave South
5th Floor
New York, NY 10003

I fear the replacement won't work, and will probably end up having to buy the DVD. Oh well.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 12:27 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 6:28 pm
Location: Austin
Why wouldn't it? Even if they do have some sort of mass defection problem, they'll do a whole "recall" thing like they did for the Rohmer box set. You won't have to uh, settle, for the dvd or anything.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 1:32 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2009 1:01 pm
Location: Stretford, Manchester
"Boiling" the disks often fixes problems like this, although I had no dice on one of my keyvip disks recently, which I imported and can no longer send back and will have to purchase again.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 9:40 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 10:22 pm
I followed Jon's advice but the same problem occurred right around the 47:45 mark. I'm mailing the disc to Criterion tomorrow.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 11:52 pm 

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 6:58 pm
I just watched the Blu-Ray on my PS3 no more than an hour ago and all was fine. Man does it look good!!


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2010 12:36 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 4:07 pm
TMDaines wrote:
"Boiling" the disks often fixes problems like this, although I had no dice on one of my keyvip disks recently, which I imported and can no longer send back and will have to purchase again.
I want to add a cautionary note about boiling discs. I have tried this four times and had great results the first two. But the third and fourth times I did it, using the exact same process, I wound up with a DVD with a cloudy surface that wouldn't play, and a very slightly concave-warped CD that would neither play nor eject from my laptop. In the future I'll only try this trick as a last resort before throwing something in the trash, and even then never try to play the boiled disc in my laptop.


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2010 1:53 am 

Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 10:22 pm
whtm0197 wrote:
I just watched the Blu-Ray on my PS3 no more than an hour ago and all was fine. Man does it look good!!

I have a sony BDP-S350 but from what I've heard the PS3 is an incredible machine. I'm glad you were able to watch it though. Yeah from what I saw it looks amazing!


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2010 10:27 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2008 9:35 am
Watched all of Days of Heaven on the Oppo Blu-ray - no problems. For whatever it is worth, I note that this machine was purchased as part of the first group of Blu-rays released to the public and has never received any subsequent firmware (assuming there was some).


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 Post subject: Re: 409 Days of Heaven
PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 3:02 am 

Joined: Thu Oct 20, 2005 9:34 am
I have a problem around 36 mn (chapter 9 ?) (the short scene where Bill discussed with Sam Shepard) : the picture freezes, and it sounds like my blu-ray player was struggling to play it...
I had to press stop. I opened the tray, look to the blu-ray (no scratch, no dust... the surface of the disc looks fine). I didn't clean the disc.
I put the disc again, tried to play it again from the start, and it played fine, this time (no freeze, no pixels artefacts at the "reported" 47 minutes)...just fine

my guess is that there's something wrong with the first batch pressing of this Days of Heaven on blu-ray. Not bad enough to make the blu-ray unreadable, but enough to make some problems with some blu-ray players.
(bonus worked fine)


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 Post subject: Re: 10 Walkabout
PostPosted: Sat May 08, 2010 9:19 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:09 pm
Location: Edinburgh, UK
Got my copy today of Walkabout and unfortunately it seems the problem with the first batch of Days of Heaven Blu-Rays has been reproduced on Walkabout: my disc played fine until the 50 minute mark when the Aborigine boy finds the little brother whimpering in his sister's arms. The picture freezes and then skips several minutes before resuming play. I can't test the disc on other machines with the Sony being my only BR player but with the exact same error occuring on the Malick and in a similar timeframe, I suspect that Criterion have mucked up yet again. I have reported the fault to Movietyme and am returning the disc this weekend, and can only hope that I don't get another faulty disc. Could everyone else check their discs upon receipt and confirm if they're having the same problem? Thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: 10 Walkabout
PostPosted: Sat May 08, 2010 11:01 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 02, 2008 3:11 pm
Location: Europe
Mr Finch wrote:
Got my copy today and unfortunately it seems the problem with the first batch of Days of Heaven Blu-Rays has been reproduced on Walkabout: my disc played fine until the 50 minute mark when the Aborigine boy finds the little brother whimpering in his sister's arms. The picture freezes and then skips several minutes before resuming play. I can't test the disc on other machines with the Sony being my only BR player but with the exact same error occuring on the Malick and in a similar timeframe, I suspect that Criterion have mucked up yet again. I have reported the fault to Movietyme and am returning the disc this weekend, and can only hope that I don't get another faulty disc. Could everyone else check their discs upon receipt and confirm if they're having the same problem? Thanks.

It could be a firmware issue with your Sony Blu-Ray player. Check if your player is on the latest firmware; if not, perform the required update and try playing the disc again.


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 Post subject: Re: 10 Walkabout
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2010 12:06 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2005 1:19 am
Location: Hong Kong
My shop-bought copy played fine.


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 Post subject: Re: 10 Walkabout
PostPosted: Fri May 21, 2010 2:12 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 3:48 am
Location: KCK
Highdefdigest also notes "a technical hiccup" at the 51 minute mark...I hope this isn't a big deal and requires replacements or something.

I'm so glad they put the David Gulpilil documentary on this release - his is one of the more unique and fascinating film careers in the history of film.


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 Post subject: Re: 10 Walkabout
PostPosted: Fri May 21, 2010 2:14 am 
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Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 6:28 pm
Location: Austin
Weird. My Sherwood didn't have any sort of problem with either this or the Days of Heaven disc.


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 Post subject: Re: 10 Walkabout
PostPosted: Fri May 21, 2010 10:39 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 10:25 am
Location: SLC, UT
This seems to be a problem affecting a small percentage of copies of a number of titles on Blu in exactly the same way. (As I've mentioned before, I had the same problem with Che Pt. 2, right at the 51 minute mark.) I know it's not a player-specific problem, because a) I tried my bad disc on two different brands of players, and b) the replacement Criterion sent me worked just fine. It's probably a good idea for the time being to check any Crit BD you purchase first thing to make sure it plays fine between 50 and 52 minutes. If you have the problem, email Mulvaney and get a replacement.


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