Dec 22, 2006

On Watching Pirated DVDs

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Pirated DVD of Borat (Toledo, OH) A relative of mine came back from New York City the other day (her identity will be protected in this post), and she brought with her some DVDs of films currently in the theater.

She paid $5 each for the discs from a street vendor near Times Square, and they turned out to be pirated versions of the films. Having never knowingly watched a pirated film before, I was all game to view the discs.

The overall quality of each of these films - Borat and The Pursuit of Happiness - was laughably poor, as both were produced from cameras set up on tripods in theaters running the films. In The Pursuit of Happiness you could see the tops of the front seats, the camera was set at an oblique angle, and there was a recurrent sound of rustling papers throughout the film.

The sound quality in Borat was very poor, and it had Spanish subtitles where the protagonists spoke in faux Kazakh. This pirated DVD was filmed with a digital camera that had some sort of autofocus function, and every time the scene changed there was a one-second visual anomaly as the lens readjusted.

I am not sure what sort of consumer would be satisfied with such poor quality DVDs, but I suspect that there are enough tourists in places like the Big Apple to keep these vendors busy.

As for me, I am too much of a purist to enjoy the sacrifice of quality over a few dollars in price, or beating the official release of a DVD by a few months.

10 comments:

Michael said...

Okay Mike, fess up. How much were you paid by the motion picture industry to blog about the poor quality of pirated films? ;)
Mike

Lisa Renee said...

There are places online where you can get that sort of movie for free, all of them are similar in that it is someone who has filmed the movie while watching in the audience. Evidently some enterprising people are then taking them burning them on to a DVD and selling them.

:-)

bill white said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Stephanie said...

I always wondered how they did pirated movies that were out in theater. I guess now I know...and no, it doesn't seem worth it.

Stephanie said...

So much for sparing the nastiness for the holidays.

Anonymous said...

Uh oh I can see it now the FBI will be on Mike's door step questioning about this.

historymike said...

Sorry, fake Bill White.

As much as I find it amusing that someone has turned the tables on the repugnant Hal Turner, I don't allow the publication of personal information on my site.


Also the VNN link has been deleted.

historymike said...

Michael:

THAT would be a great source of financial largesse; I would be happy to be able to tap into Hollywood cash and write negative posts about piracy.

Paula said...

Quite possibly my favorite word of 2006 can be borrowed to apply here: shitteos

http://dabble.com/playlist/5949539

Hooda Thunkit said...

Like you, I find watching such poor quality copies to be a waste of my time.

I'd rather have the real thing...