Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

Discuss DVDs and Blu-rays released by the BFI and the films on them.

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Ozu Teapot
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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#76 Post by Ozu Teapot » Wed Jun 01, 2011 4:50 am

June 13th to June 20th for me. Amazon claim they are "awaiting stock from their supplier". It's a bit annoyng as I pre-ordered it back on May 9th, but I still have my two new Ozu Blus to watch in the meantime...

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#77 Post by Ozu Teapot » Thu Jun 02, 2011 5:36 am

Well the same evening as I got the notification I previously posted about I had another to say it had been shipped - and now it's just turned up in the post! Hope all the other posters here who were waiting on Amazon have been as fortunate!

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#78 Post by Zobalob » Thu Jun 02, 2011 8:53 pm

Mine's been shipped (Amazon UK) should be here later today, hopefully...oh wait, it'll be coming from Jersey, so it'll take a few days.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#79 Post by NABOB OF NOWHERE » Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:49 pm

Had a browse through my copy last night and L'Age d'Or looks luscious given its age and provenance.
I am not so sure about the choice of Robert Short as commentator however as I had great difficulty concentrating on what he had to say, which I am sure is fascinating in its own (w)rite, but I couldn't help thinking that while someone had tried to clone David Starkey Terence Davies crawled into the pod alongside at the last moment. As well as merging visually the fruity voice seems also a synthesis of the two. Every time he swilled those french vowels round his mouth like a corked wine I found myself gripping the edge of the seat wondering if we were gonna pull out in time before he choked on his own tongue. I must admit the content did seem well worth following up on I just wish I had the antidote to the delivery. However all in all another BFI triumph.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#80 Post by Zobalob » Sat Jun 04, 2011 3:00 pm

Amazon didn't have it sent from Jersey, hooray, so it arrived yesterday, a day after dispatch.

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Psicosis
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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#81 Post by Psicosis » Sun Jun 05, 2011 5:51 am

Does the 1960 restoration featured on the new BFI release contain the slower projection speed? After looking over the screen comparisons it still seems that Filmoteca Española is the best choice. If only I could locate it.

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Saturnome
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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#82 Post by Saturnome » Wed Jun 08, 2011 1:46 pm

It's not really related to the film or this release, but my mailman delivered my package to the wrong address (even on an other street). The man living there opened the package, expecting a PS3 game. He saw L'Age d'or instead and decided to give it a shot. And he liked it!
After he noticed it wasn't Amazon's error but a mailman error, he gave it back to me. (or maybe he knew that already but didn't liked the film, but he seemed honest)

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#83 Post by Psicosis » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:04 pm

Saturnome wrote:It's not really related to the film or this release, but my mailman delivered my package to the wrong address (even on an other street). The man living there opened the package, expecting a PS3 game. He saw L'Age d'or instead and decided to give it a shot. And he liked it!
After he noticed it wasn't Amazon's error but a mailman error, he gave it back to me. (or maybe he knew that already but didn't liked the film, but he seemed honest)
After watching did he reveal if it was the slower projection speed?

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#84 Post by Saturnome » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:40 pm

Yeah we chatted for hours about that while he checked in my mailbox for anything else to watch.

Honestly all I can tell you is that Un Chien Andalou is 15:44 and movements looks fast at most times. The print isn't perfect but it looks nice in HD.
Since it's a sound version, I doubt the speed changed at all from the other editions of the 1960 restoration.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#85 Post by MichaelB » Thu Jun 09, 2011 12:21 pm

Yes, the fact that it has a soundtrack does rather restrict the possibility of altering the framerate, though I suspect the DVD is at 25fps (SD PAL) while the Blu-ray is at a slightly slower 24fps.

It's worth noting that this 1960 version was the last one to be personally signed off by Buñuel himself - which suggests that he was happy with the framerate. Then again, he never seemed to be overly concerned about technical matters, so I wouldn't read too much into that.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#86 Post by MichaelB » Fri Jun 10, 2011 1:46 pm


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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#87 Post by Tribe » Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:22 am

These are the best transfers of L'Age and Chien, I've ever seen! The DVD versions look fabulous. Perhaps I just haven't kept up, but for decades the only versions of these two I ever saw were relatively distorted and/or mangled. It's just a revelation to see these practically for the first time! :D

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#88 Post by knives » Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:30 am

Yes, the entire second half of Chien was like a new film to me. It basically went as if I had never seen it before and renewed my love greatly even if it's just mostly a case of cropping.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#89 Post by matrixschmatrix » Sat Jul 09, 2011 5:56 pm

That's bizarre- my Blu plays Un Chien Andalou without trouble, but L'Age d'Or skips on my PC, is covered with green error garbage on my laptop, and seems to work without trouble on my PS3.

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Psicosis
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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#90 Post by Psicosis » Tue Oct 04, 2011 3:44 am

I ordered the two volume 80th anniversary edition book "new" from the recently launched Amazon Spain. It arrived from Amazon Germany instead and when I opened the package, I discovered someone had removed the shrink wrap, the book was completely dirty with marks everywhere on the front & back and the Filmoteca Espanola restoration DVD was missing, leaving behind an outline where it was stored.

In all my years of shopping online I've never experienced something as bizarre as this. Surreal to say the least, almost as if Dali & Bunuel had packed it.

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ola t
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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#91 Post by ola t » Tue Oct 04, 2011 3:52 am

The DVD was missing from my book too, though Casa del Libro were able to send the disc separately after I complained. Hope Amazon can do the same for you.

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Psicosis
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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#92 Post by Psicosis » Sat Oct 08, 2011 4:14 am

Received the replacement from Amazon Spain. It was factory sealed and came with the DVD.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#93 Post by oneshotmonkey » Sat Dec 24, 2011 2:12 am

L'Age d'Or looks very good but, let's be honest, the BFI dropped the ball on this. Un Chien Andalou is the better / more important film and hasn't been treated with adequate respect. The BFI should have strong ties to an institution like Filmoteca Española, a vague excuse about rights issues doesn't really cut it.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#94 Post by Tribe » Wed Dec 28, 2011 4:33 pm

oneshotmonkey wrote:L'Age d'Or looks very good but, let's be honest, the BFI dropped the ball on this. Un Chien Andalou is the better / more important film and hasn't been treated with adequate respect. The BFI should have strong ties to an institution like Filmoteca Española, a vague excuse about rights issues doesn't really cut it.
OK, I'll bite....because this post is screaming for attention. I don't get it. BFI dropped the ball because it doesn't have "strong ties" to another institution?

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#95 Post by MichaelB » Wed Dec 28, 2011 4:54 pm

There's no question that the BFI was well aware of the Filmoteca Española edition during production of this Blu-ray (I can vouch for this personally) and since they didn't end up using it, it's a racing certainty that it was due to factors beyond their control. Maybe the Filmoteca didn't want to license it at all, maybe they wanted an unrealistic amount of money, maybe it simply wasn't available in 1080p: the only thing I'm sure about is that enquiries were definitely made.

"Dropped the ball" implies incompetence, which is rather countered by this particular production team's track record. At more or less exactly the same time that this release was being put together, I was working with the same people on Alice, and I honestly don't think they or anybody else could have done a better job.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#96 Post by triodelover » Wed Dec 28, 2011 5:44 pm

MichaelB wrote:There's no question that the BFI was well aware of the Filmoteca Española edition during production of this Blu-ray (I can vouch for this personally) and since they didn't end up using it, it's a racing certainty that it was due to factors beyond their control. Maybe the Filmoteca didn't want to license it at all, maybe they wanted an unrealistic amount of money, maybe it simply wasn't available in 1080p: the only thing I'm sure about is that enquiries were definitely made.

"Dropped the ball" implies incompetence, which is rather countered by this particular production team's track record. At more or less exactly the same time that this release was being put together, I was working with the same people on Alice, and I honestly don't think they or anybody else could have done a better job.
oneshotmonkey seems to be a hit and run artist. First in the BFI Leopard thread he posts screen grabs that he deliberately misidentified (in a response to your post) to disparage BFI. When corrected, he made assertions he would not substantiate when challenged. Again his response seemed to be purposed solely as an opportunity to slam BFI (and Criterion). And here he is again attacking BFI by pontificating about something he gives no evidence he knows anything about. It's very easy to do this from the comfort of anonymity where one needn't present credentials or documentation.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#97 Post by zedz » Wed Dec 28, 2011 6:26 pm

triodelover wrote:And here he is again attacking BFI by pontificating about something he gives no evidence he knows anything about. It's very easy to do this from the comfort of anonymity where one needn't present credentials or documentation.
Nothing could be easier.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#98 Post by MichaelB » Thu Dec 29, 2011 6:21 am

I've just been in touch with someone who actually worked on this release, and the situation is that the BFI did indeed make every effort to license the Filmoteca Española restoration of Un Chien Andalou.

But, for reasons that they never divulged, the Filmoteca refused point blank to license their master, and continued to stonewall multiple requests. Maybe they were worried about competition for their own version (especially given that BFI releases, though notionally UK-only, get a lot of international attention), maybe they wanted to do a Blu-ray themselves at some point down the line - it doesn't really matter what the reason was, as the upshot was the same.

As you can see from earlier in this thread, the original plan was to just go ahead with the old SD master, but since it became very clear very quickly that people would be very disappointed by this, the release was delayed by a few months (while the clock on the licensing period was already ticking) to permit a search for alternative materials to fuel a 1080p transfer. In the absence of the Filmoteca restoration, the print that was in the best physical condition was a 16mm copy of Buñuel's 1960 restoration, so that's what was used.

So no-one "dropped the ball" at all - in fact, the production team on this release ended up putting much more work into it than they originally intended! But if rightsholders don't want to make a deal, there's ultimately nothing you can do except make the best of what you can legally access. The alternative, of course, would have been to drop Un Chien Andalou altogether, but I really don't think that this would have gone down any better!

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#99 Post by oneshotmonkey » Thu Dec 29, 2011 6:43 am

Thanks for the clarification, Michael. Although this does rather support my earlier suggestion that relations between the BFI and Filmoteca Española are not what they should be! Personally then, I think they should have dropped Un Chien Andalou, as one simply expects a higher standard of product from the BFI and it just distracts from the quality of L'Age d'Or which, as I said at the beginning, is very good.

Re: The Leopard, triodelover, you've already lost that argument to a deluge of voices and it seems pretty cheap to try and resurrect it here. If this was Kino and Mr. Bongo instead of Criterion and BFI, you'd be jumping all over them... Imho, there's nothing shameful about it: the BFI/Criterion was made from the best available elements at the time, but it's since been trumped by the new restoration and the honest thing would be just to acknowledge this and, ideally, pledge to re-release the film at a later date.

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Re: Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'or

#100 Post by MichaelB » Thu Dec 29, 2011 7:18 am

oneshotmonkey wrote:Personally then, I think they should have dropped Un Chien Andalou, as one simply expects a higher standard of product from the BFI.
In situations like this, you have to be pragmatic. Since the two films were paired on the original DVD release that the dual-format reissue was designed to replace, it would have been perverse to have dropped Un Chien Andalou - and although the shortcomings of the new transfer are impossible to deny (the cropping is inherent in the film materials and therefore impossible to do anything about without access to the restoration), the fact is that it's still a marked advance on the original DVD release. In other words, absolutely worth doing.

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