1073 Memories of Murder

Discuss DVDs and Blu-rays released by Criterion and the films on them. If it's got a spine number, it's in here. Threads may contain spoilers.
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therewillbeblus
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#76 Post by therewillbeblus » Wed Mar 31, 2021 1:43 pm

This will surely read as a blasphemous statement to many on this board, but the tweaks made to this release are more upsetting to me than the WKW set controversy

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soundchaser
Leave Her to Beaver
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#77 Post by soundchaser » Wed Mar 31, 2021 2:00 pm

therewillbeblus wrote:
Wed Mar 31, 2021 1:43 pm
This will surely read as a blasphemous statement to many on this board, but the tweaks made to this release are more upsetting to me than the WKW set controversy
Oh, it’s all bad. But I think it’s understandable given that it’s just the color timing (as opposed to aspect ratio, lines of dialogue, etc.) and that it’s one film as opposed to an entire mountain of them.

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senseabove
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#78 Post by senseabove » Wed Mar 31, 2021 2:07 pm

therewillbeblus wrote:
Wed Mar 31, 2021 1:43 pm
This will surely read as a blasphemous statement to many on this board, but the tweaks made to this release are more upsetting to me than the WKW set controversy
Image

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therewillbeblus
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#79 Post by therewillbeblus » Wed Mar 31, 2021 2:20 pm

This is certainly colored by my fondness for this film (still far and away Bong's best), and one of the films I've personally been waiting longest for a region A blu for since it blew my mind in a college film class (coincidentally this, Fallen Angels, and, at the time to a lesser degree, Chungking Express were the films that inspired me to look beyond French New Wave into other modern foreign cinema- all three butchered this year by the same company). Of all of them though, Memories of Murder is the film that I have the specifics of the look of it, particularly the color scheme, branded into my memory still from almost 15 years ago. The sunny skies contrasted with the dark interiors, the use of red (yes, we can all tell that it's still red, but are we really setting the bar at it being literally the same color now that the WKW set has come out?) which doesn't pop in the darkness the way it did on the DVD- and oh man, that first nighttime killer(?) scene with the red contrasting in the dreary rain is a flashbulb memory of ironic and stomach-churning haunting beauty that sobered me up to the possibilities of foreign cinema (I still recall my thought in class at 18 years old, in the instant of watching that scene, that this was besting Zodiac in every way- a film which I loved already), a feeling that the stills of that image on the Criterion just don't produce. But yes, it's definitely red so I should probably fugetaboutit. Anyways, it's a subjective assessment (surely the WKW soiling is more objectively detrimental) but while visual alterations aren't usually what sticks out for me most in a film, this is the film where they intensely impact the feelings and thematic weight of the film for me.

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Big Ben
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#80 Post by Big Ben » Wed Mar 31, 2021 3:10 pm

Memories is just the thing though. I don't have any of those memories because I was much too young to see this when it came out initially and so my first viewing of this will the film looking this way. Am I wrong to not be as perturbed by this as others? I certainly don't feel that angry about this but I'm certainly receptive to why others feel that way. There is no "before" for me. Same applies to the WKW stuff. It certainly looks inferior to me but that's about all the emotional stakes I have in this endeavor.

I'm not defending revisionism but am sort of acknowledging, begrudgingly a sobering point. This won't be the last movie to have the way it looks changed. And more importantly acknowledging the very real reality of how powerless we really are to do anything about it. Particularly if the film community at large just readily accepts the changes especially if they have no emotional connection to the way a film looked decades past. Now that's distressing.

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swo17
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#81 Post by swo17 » Wed Mar 31, 2021 3:17 pm

Should I change this thread title to "Memories of Redrum" or am I not allowed to do that anymore?

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hearthesilence
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#82 Post by hearthesilence » Wed Mar 31, 2021 3:27 pm

ford wrote:
Wed Mar 31, 2021 12:32 pm
...a misunderstanding (like the supposed "blue push" of Criterion's BULL DURHAM which, from everything I've read, is much closer to the original late 1980s release than the old blu-ray)...
I have my doubts about that. I've seen it projected (and probably way too many times on TV), and I've even been to a Durham Bulls game - the team colors are essentially a built-in color guide, and any sports fan will be sensitive to their favorite team's uniform colors. I've never seen the movie deviate from the Bulls' shade of blue until Criterion's BD, which is a shade closer to the Miami Marlins.

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therewillbeblus
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#83 Post by therewillbeblus » Wed Mar 31, 2021 3:52 pm

Big Ben wrote:
Wed Mar 31, 2021 3:10 pm
Memories is just the thing though. I don't have any of those memories because I was much too young to see this when it came out initially and so my first viewing of this will the film looking this way. Am I wrong to not be as perturbed by this as others? I certainly don't feel that angry about this but I'm certainly receptive to why others feel that way. There is no "before" for me. Same applies to the WKW stuff. It certainly looks inferior to me but that's about all the emotional stakes I have in this endeavor.

I'm not defending revisionism but am sort of acknowledging, begrudgingly a sobering point. This won't be the last movie to have the way it looks changed. And more importantly acknowledging the very real reality of how powerless we really are to do anything about it. Particularly if the film community at large just readily accepts the changes especially if they have no emotional connection to the way a film looked decades past. Now that's distressing.
As a pretty vocal advocate for the value of relativist experience and believer in subjective realities, I definitely hear your point. My main issue is subjective but my point is also that, using this example, if the red doesn't pop in the same way or if the night v day scenes aren't so starkly contrasted, that specific bolded experience that visually emphasized a novel core theme of merging disgust and deviance with radiance, as if bringing us closer to the mesmerized hypnosis of the killer or the ironic conditions of the detectives, will likely be muted even if we wind up liking the movie the same. To use an extreme example- people have seen Greed in its existent form of frozen stills connecting the narrative, and still wind up declaring it a masterpiece, but even if some critics consider it their favorite film, there's no way in hell they are getting the same experience that those who saw the film as one comprehensive movement did.

Calvin
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#84 Post by Calvin » Sat Apr 03, 2021 6:04 am

Screencap comparison between the Criterion and UK Artificial Eye Blu-Rays

The green push applied to the Criterion does seem to be fairly uniform rather than timed shot by shot. Additionally, while the booklet may contain more information, Criterion advertises the restoration as having been supervised by Bong rather than their individual transfer. Given that all the other releases sourced from the same restoration look different to the Criterion, I wonder if something simply went wrong with their own transfer.

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criterionsnob
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#85 Post by criterionsnob » Wed Apr 21, 2021 11:00 am

10 Things I Learned: Memories of Murder
Bong wanted to accentuate the somber mood of the film by maintaining a costume and set-dressing palette that was devoid of most primary colors (aside from the occasional red, as with the clothing of the initial victims). In addition, he and cinematographer Kim Hyung Ku decided to print most of Memories of Murder using a “bleach bypass” process, in which the regular bleaching step of film processing is skipped, thus allowing color dyes to be retained in the emulsion and creating a more desaturated image. Only the opening and closing scenes, set among the amber rice fields, were processed normally, so the golden hues could be showcased.

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Der Spieler
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#86 Post by Der Spieler » Sat Apr 24, 2021 10:50 am

Comparisons are up at Caps-a-holic. The Criterion looks even worse than I imagined. Yikes.

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andyli
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#87 Post by andyli » Sat Apr 24, 2021 11:07 am

Yes it looks perceivably greener than the French release. Either Bong further tweaked it for Criterion or something went seriously wrong.

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tenia
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#88 Post by tenia » Sat Apr 24, 2021 1:18 pm

It's getting hard to understand exactly what happened, both now and during the 4K restoration process.

It's clear that the Criterion and French releases are sourced from the same 4K restoration, with both claiming a Bong supervision (only Criterion also claims a DoP supervision). It's hard to understand why he would be OK with something in 2017-18 but not anymore in 2020.
There also is a report on DVD Classik from someone who saw the movie in Korea in 2019 and who says it looked rather like the Korean BD.
Finally, going by the 10 Things I Learned bit, neither the French or Criterion BDs are really showcasing golden hues. Comparing the Korean BD with the Criterion one especially is quite jarring in this regard.

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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#89 Post by Calvin » Sat Apr 24, 2021 1:22 pm

tenia wrote:
Sat Apr 24, 2021 1:18 pm
It's getting hard to understand exactly what happened, both now and during the 4K restoration process.

It's clear that the Criterion and French releases are sourced from the same 4K restoration, with both claiming a Bong supervision (only Criterion also claims a DoP supervision). It's hard to understand why he would be OK with something in 2017-18 but not anymore in 2020.
Criterion say that the restoration was supervised, they don't make any claims about their transfer - unless there's more info with regards to this in the booklet than there is on their website

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dwk
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#90 Post by dwk » Sat Apr 24, 2021 1:26 pm

Criterion's colors seem to match Neon's trailer, so I would assume they also match the master they received. Maybe the French release dialed back some green.

Calvin
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#91 Post by Calvin » Sat Apr 24, 2021 1:40 pm

The colours of the UK and German releases seem to match the French, only the Criterion is an outlier.

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yoloswegmaster
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#92 Post by yoloswegmaster » Sat Apr 24, 2021 1:52 pm

Calvin wrote:
Sat Apr 24, 2021 1:22 pm
tenia wrote:
Sat Apr 24, 2021 1:18 pm
It's getting hard to understand exactly what happened, both now and during the 4K restoration process.

It's clear that the Criterion and French releases are sourced from the same 4K restoration, with both claiming a Bong supervision (only Criterion also claims a DoP supervision). It's hard to understand why he would be OK with something in 2017-18 but not anymore in 2020.
Criterion say that the restoration was supervised, they don't make any claims about their transfer - unless there's more info with regards to this in the booklet than there is on their website
I can't verify this at the moment for obvious reasons but the review by Svet has the transfer notes listed and I'm pretty sure that it only stated that the restoration was done by CJ Entertainment, with Kim Hyung-koo listed as a supervisor.

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Der Spieler
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#93 Post by Der Spieler » Sat Apr 24, 2021 3:22 pm

World of Wong Kar-wai, Nightmare Alley and Memories of Murder were my most anticipated releases. Guess it's a great year for disappointment.

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Rayon Vert
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#94 Post by Rayon Vert » Sat Apr 24, 2021 4:41 pm

Der Spieler wrote:
Sat Apr 24, 2021 10:50 am
Comparisons are up at Caps-a-holic. The Criterion looks even worse than I imagined. Yikes.
In a lot of the caps, it seems the Criterion loses detail too.

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tenia
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#95 Post by tenia » Sat Apr 24, 2021 5:31 pm

The caps there do seem softer, though it's hard to tell if it's the contrast playing tricks, the encode being rubbish or if it has been filtered.

mhofmann
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Re: 1073 Memories of Murder

#96 Post by mhofmann » Tue Apr 27, 2021 6:17 am

The underlying scan Criterion has used is very good. It's the image of the Korean disc that has been subjected to some amount of unsharp masking ("edge enhancement"), which subjectively increases local sharpness but does not actually add any detail. Compare the grass in capture 15; it's actually the Criterion disc that offers better details, without being oversharpened.
Add to this the generally higher contrast of the Korean disc and it seems as if it were sharper. It's not!

Where Criterion loses out though -- and this is not entirely unexpected 'cause they're just really bad at it -- is grain reproduction. Look at all the skies (caps, 4, 6, 15) in the Caps-a-holic examples. What should be a very fine layer of grain is just a blotchy mess on the Criterion disc. Sigh.

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