He Wants to Hold Your Hand

I see massive sales numbersAh, there we are: Today’s Sympatico/MSN DVD column, spotlighting the unqualified triumph that is “WALL-E”.

Not only is Pixar’s landmark SF romance the best movie I’ve seen this year, but Disney’s Blu-ray special edition is a stunning accomplishment — the best reason yet to upgrade your system.

C’mon, you know it’s time. Player prices are dropping, HDTVs can be had for a song, and the IMAX version of “The Dark Knight” is just around the corner …

… really, how are we gonna save the economy if we don’t spend our way back to solvency? Wasn’t that how we fixed 9/11?

8 thoughts on “He Wants to Hold Your Hand”

  1. I’ve been debating whether to pick up a blu-ray player but decided against it. I would if the prices were even close to a DVD player, but they’re ten-times the price. At ~$350 it’s not a simple decision.

    What decided it for me is the belief that the days of optical disk storage are numbered. It looks like the future’s in hard-drives or memory chips. I already have a wall of CDs that now looks old-fashioned because of MP3s. I don’t want a similar wall of out-dated blu-rays.

    Do you think blu-rays will be around in five, even three, years?

  2. P.S. I DID however buy the Godfather blu-ray restoration set. I couldn’t resist buying them because I have to see these films in HD. The plan is to give them to a friend as a gift, with the understanding that I’ll get to come over to watch ’em on HIS player some time.

  3. I suspect we’ll be seeing that choice — between physical media and stored programming — for the rest of our lives. Physical media’s never going to go away, and that perfect, uninterrupted streaming HD feed has been a few months down the road for a couple of years now.

    I do believe that Blu-ray will still be with us in five years, though I think it’ll still be a niche format. That said, a niche format that moves half a million units of a given title is nothing to be sneezed at; it’s considerably more than laserdisc ever managed.

    Player prices are coming down, too, and faster than you’d think; I’d be surprised if you can’t pick one up for less than $200 by the end of the year. It won’t be a PS3, which is the machine I’m recommending to anyone who asks — no other model is so easily accommodating of firmware updates — but still.

    Nice strategy on the “Godfather” discs, by the way. When it’s time for “Part III”, you can excuse yourself and go home …

  4. I recently upgraded to an LCD set and have been pretty happy with it. However, I’m not so crazy about the paucity and quality of the HD content available through Rogers.

    So I’m a little reluctant to give up disc based content. Who’s going to distribute anything out of the ordinary? If I rent a movie from Apple or get something on demand from Rogers, there sure aren’t any extras. And no one is featuring a great new transfer of “The Earrings of Madame de …”

    As to the cost of a Blu Ray player, I’ve read consistently that Playstation 3 will give you Sony’s best player with the added bonus of a gaming platform. There’s your value add! (at least that’s how I’m selling it for Xmas).

  5. Give it time, Nathan: Criterion has a batch of Blu-rays coming; overseas they’ve already got BLACK NARCISSUS (which I imported–it looks awesome) and the early David Leans on Blu-ray; Sony, Warner, and Buena Vista are all dipping impressively into their back catalogues; and cultish outfits Koch and Blue Underground just got into the act.

    Blu-ray, for what it’s worth, looks cleaner than broadcast HiDef, though I’d recommend ditching the factory presets of your new LCD set if you haven’t already (“pretty happy” suggests that you haven’t–Rogers HD is actually very good, and it pains me to say that). As TVs come with their brightness and sharpness jacked-up to show themselves off in a showroom, straight out of the box they tend to bring every last compression artifact into sharp relief.

  6. Hi Norm,

    I’m a free lance arts and culture journalist and I happen to live in the same complex as you but I’m at 160 Baldwin! I just noticed a package for you from Highroad waiting in the 21 Nassau lobby entrance!

    perhaps it’s your copy of Wall-E?




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