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Weekend Roundtable: New Year’s Wishes for 2012

As we bid adieu to 2011, let’s use this final Roundtable of the year to look ahead and make our home theater wishes for 2012. Are you planning to upgrade your HT equipment? Are there specific movies that you hope will finally come to Blu-ray this year? Perhaps you’re waiting for some company to release a new gadget that will solve a nagging problem you have? We’ll tell you what we’re hoping for if you’ll do the same.

Luke Hickman

Since my home theater is so new, I’m still fascinated by and in love with it. My 40″ Samsung TV is sufficient considering the size of my room, but maybe an upgrade to something slightly larger would be nice.

As an official film critic, I’m always presented with the “What’s your favorite movie?” question, to which I respond by informing the inquisitor of the three movies that made me decide to work for this hard-to-get dream job: ‘Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind’, ‘Garden State’ and ‘Vanilla Sky’. (Yes, I know that most people hate the latter, but ‘Vanilla Sky’ is a wild Cameron Crowe film with more than enough aesthetics to keep that hatred from tarnishing my unapologetic love for it). ‘Eternal Sunshine’ finally received a decent Blu-ray transfer last year. All I want from 2012 is for Fox Searchlight to give me ‘Garden State’ and for Paramount to give me ‘Vanilla Sky’ on Blu-ray. Although I’d prefer the rumored director’s cut of ‘Vanilla Sky’, the theatrical cut would suffice.

Mike Attebery

My one home theater wish is pretty simple. I want a Blu-ray release for an eleven year old catalog title. That’s right, I’m still waiting for the Blu-ray release of ‘Wonder Boys‘. One of my favorite movies (from an Oscar-winning Hollywood favorite no less) and it still hasn’t hit BD! Come on, Paramount. Let’s make this happen in 2012. Make my home theater wish come true!

Adam Tyner (DVDTalk)

I guess my greatest home theater wish for 2012 would be for someone to finally put out a Kuro killer. I’ve started to get the itch to move up to at least a 65″ display, but it’ll take something pretty incredible for me to step away from my 60″ 9G Kuro Elite. Even a few years after its release, no manufacturer has come close. If someone manages to pull it off next year, they can count on my business.

As for films I’d love to see on Blu-ray, ‘Rear Window’ is as great a place to start as any. It’s in the running as my absolute favorite film of all time, and the lack of Grace Kelly on the format is a wrong that desperately needs to be set right.

Tom Landy

Having just upgraded my home theatre to 3D earlier this year, I’m mainly wishing for more long-awaited classics to hit Blu-ray in 2012. With ‘Jaws’ already tentatively scheduled for a mid-August release, maybe more Spielberg blockbusters like ‘E.T.’ and ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ won’t be too far behind. At least, here’s hoping, anyway.

Dick Ward

Around this time last year I had grand plans to buy myself a brand new TV, but things came up – namely a lack of money. This year, that doesn’t look like it’s going to be an obstacle. I’m not going to be making the purchase until February, so I’ve got plenty of time to make up my mind, but there’s a certain 50″ Panasonic Viera that I’ve got my eye on. The ST30 isn’t the most impressive set on earth, but at $900, it does 1080p resolution, 3D movies, 3D photos, and it even has some connected features. The big question for me is going to be size. 50″ is big, but I’ll be faced with the struggle of buying the TV sooner or saving up the cash to go to 65″.

M. Enois Duarte

My Blu-ray “holy grail” is coincidentally the ‘Indiana Jones’ trilogy. (Actually, it would now be considered a tetralogy since the fourth entry.) So, I guess what I want is the ‘Indiana Jones Quadrilogy’. We already got ‘Back to the Future’ last year, my other absolute must-have from the ’80s. And with the recent release of the ‘Star Wars’ movies, it’s about high time that Lucas and Spielberg give film fans some classic Indy action in high-def!

As for the next addition to the home theater, I want to move up to a 3D projector, hopefully before the Blu-ray release of ‘Hugo’ – one of my favorites of 2011. My first obvious choice is the Panasonic PT-AE7000U because I already own the glasses that would work perfectly with it. But I’ve also been thinking about the BenQ W7000. And since I plan to purchase the MonsterVision Max 3D kit soon, the glasses shouldn’t really be an issue. I just need to decide which model I really want.

Josh Zyber

What I most want from 2012 is for a certain home video studio to get its head out of its ass. Yes, I’m talking to you, Universal Studios. Recycling a decade-old DVD master that was plagued with edge enhancement and DNR is not acceptable in the Blu-ray era. To do this for every single catalog title you release, including some of the most high-profile movies ever made, is just plain shameful. Smothering on more edge enhancement and DNR will not solve the problem. These movies need fresh film-to-video transfers, and you know it. You may think that you’re saving a buck in the short term, and that bonehead consumers won’t know the difference anyway, but people do actually notice and pay attention to these things. This is not the proper way to preserve your catalog. You are doing these films, and your consumers, a great disservice. It’s time to step up and re-transfer these movies to modern quality standards. Releasing more movies older than 1980 might be nice as well.

Tell us in the Comments what you want from 2012.

We’ll be taking Monday off. Enjoy the long weekend, and Happy New Year!

16 comments

  1. HuskerGuy

    Will likely be grabbing a new receiver in 2012 to roundout the 3D conversion brought on by my new 64″ TV.

    Movie/show wise, I’d take a blu ray version of Clue for my wife and my persistent wish for the TV show “Ed” (Tom Cavanaugh) to be released in any format. Realistically speaking though, I’d love to see Zoolander on blu.

  2. August Lehe

    Dearly hope to acquire by late 2012 a Yamaha Top of the Line Home Theatre Receiver (unless talked into a Pioneer Elite or something else!) An OPPO BD-93 Blu Ray Player, a Pansonic Plasma 46 or 50 inch 3-D set; DEF TECH SURROUND STRIP!
    AND THREE COVETED COLLECTOR’S DISCS:
    SHANE,
    SHEPHERD OF THE HILLS,
    PORTRAIT OF JENNY

  3. These all all good but I want
    David Fincher’s THE GAME (a nice Criterion Director’s Cut preferred)
    I, Claudius
    That Thing You Do (Director’s Cut)
    Brazil (Three-Disc Criterion Edition)
    The Abyss (Director’s Cut)
    All Beatles films (Hard Day’s Night, Help, Magical Mystery Tour & Get Back)
    Pat Metheny Group – Travels
    Meet Joe Black
    Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip – Complete Series
    Brooklyn South – Complete Series
    Twin Peaks – The Definitive Gold Box Edition
    Space Ghost Coast to Coast
    Jonny Quest – the Complete First Season
    Black Adder & Fawlty Towers
    The Singing Detective (BBC-Michael Gambon version)
    And many more…

  4. The main thing I want is a permanant job. I’ve been contracting for years, and it sucks all those periods between jobs. And I am hoping I land one in the next couple of weeks, because I cannot make it past January on unemployment.

    As far as bigger things, the big things I am hoping to do is to get Conn’s and Fry’s paid off. I would like to get Best Buy paid off as well, but I need to be realistic. Conn’s is going to happen, and Fry’s is a possibility.

    As for home theater, I really am wanting to pick up a 3DTV this year, but that will only happen after I get a few things paid off.

  5. August Lehe

    AS USUAL, I omitted the one long-awaited Blu Ray Collector’s disc nobody else seems to care about: KING’S ROW. Erich Korngold’s score is something to behold (right up there with ROSZA’s best) and it is the one film to show when friends try to tell you Ronald Reagan was no actor!

    • I have a feeling that we will probably see an old master on this movie when it gets released. The film was restored in the early 90s, so we may get lucky and see a release remastered from that, but I am willing to bet we may see the edition that has been showing on HDNet (which is actually pretty good). I doubt we will see a scan from the original camera negatives, which means that the movie probably will not look as good as people are expecting it to.

      • Josh Zyber
        Author

        I don’t think we have to worry about Lawrence of Arabia. The reason it’s been taking so long to hit Blu-ray is that Sony has been working on a fresh remaster of the film for some time. When it does finally come, it should be a quality product.

  6. “Recycling a decade-old DVD master that was plagued with edge enhancement and DNR is not acceptable in the Blu-ray era.”

    Oh, I want to change mine and echo Josh ’cause his answer is much better.

    • Yes, that is certainly an issue. CBS seems to do the same thing. On My Fair Lady, they went through an extensive restoration back in 1994, and struck a new film master from what they had. The Blu-Ray seems to be struck from the 1994 restoration. Problem is, there was issues even with that, and it was before Warner came up with their technicolor scanner thingy that they used on their recent releases. So, while it may be a new scan of the 1994 restoration, it is still not a scan from the original camera negatives or master film. As digital film repair and restoration was in its infancy in 1994, we have a Blu-Ray that looks okay, but no where near as great as other Technicolor movies out there. Sadly, if you watch the making of the movie, it seems that, even though its a Warner Bros movie, we will never see a Warner restoration of it, as Warner only bought the right for seven years, and then the rights were to revert to CBS after that, who has held the rights every since.

      You know, though, we seem to have an intersting issue here. Many movies are now coming to Blu-Ray as the adoption rate continues to grow. The problem is, this growth is not in the videophile community – they were the early adoptors. So these studios can cheaply turn out these Blu-Rays from old DVD masters, and the masses will buy them. So what if a few hundred or a few thousand hold out because its an old master – the loss in sales from not striking a new master is probably less than what it would cost to do proper restoration on each and every movie that is released. Its a shame, but that’s just the economy we live in – profit is more important than film preservation – ie profit from restoration must exceed the cost of restoration or remastering.

      While I do not like what Universal and other studios are doing with recycling old masters, I certainly can understand why they are doing it.

  7. Joe B

    August–you have a cohort in desiring KINGS ROW to come to blu-ray!! It’s been one of my favorites for decades and, though I’d never have voted for him, I really liked Reagan as a movie personality. And his performance as Drake McHugh in KINGS ROW is simply perfect casting and untoppable!
    Plus– that music!! We waited for years for a dvd release…now it’s time for the blu-ray!
    Wouldn’t mind that LAWRENCE OF ARABIA release either!!! Happy New Year, all.

  8. August Lehe

    IT JUST hit me that 20th Century Fox released a region-blocked Blu Ray of The INNOCENTS, starring Deborah Kerr (1961) a couple years back. Anyone else want to help lobby for this one? a REAL CLASSIC!

    • EM

      Yeah, I expect The Innocents could look quite awesome in high-def. And if it came out the same week as The Haunting, so much the better!

  9. August Lehe

    MR. WARD, Have you considered a 46-inch GT Series Panasonic Viera? I think it is 3-D, 1080 AND THX certified. It will fit in where a 50-inch or larger might not fit or look tacky. I think that’s the set I want later this year.