DVD's new 'Fashion'
Movies are truncated to fit 16/9 screens no matter what
Since 2005 or so, a new total stupidity has contaminated the people creating DVD from movies for the market.
They truncate them to fit a 16/9 TV screen from original theater or TV movies with from the standard 4/3 format,
And recently also from the 2.33 Scope format).
Here are some linked pictures pages to illustrate this massacre.
This is the case for the second season of the show 'Millennium' (the first season was formatted correctly), also for the first season of the 'Carnivāle', show from HBO, and worst, of the classical thriller 'Kiss me deadly', in black & white. (Zone 1 and Zone 2). Also Cronenberg's 'Dead Zone', published by Mad Movies.
I must note with pleasure that the English 'Hercule Poirot' show (Zone 2) has been avoiding this catastrophe for the first and second season, with the added bonus of a very reasonable tag price.
Another stupid method was very frequent on tapes (and on US TV) for many years, called Pan & Scan.
The goal was to remove the black strips that a normal TV (4/3) shows when playing a cinemascope
or other wide screen movie. Although many movie lovers hated this, it has a justification.
But the worst is that the new 16/9 trick is ADDING the very same black strips than Pan & Scan was removing,
for all happy owners of a 'normal' TV set (not a 16/9) which are still a large majority.
This is stupid, because on a 16/9 TV Set, it does do anything useful, as a simple ONE TOUCH on the zoom function gives the same result if the viewer does not care at all about movies and just want a full screen of anything without black strips.
In both case, one third of the image is lost, but with a 4/3 recording you keep the choice, with a 16/9 massacre you can only cry of the good money you loose buying this sh...
Who can do anything to alleviate this ? The worst is that you cannot even ask for a refund, because it is difficult to know the real format in advance, practically all DVD saying 'compatible 16/9'. In the case of 'Kiss me deadly', and the two last seasons of Millennium, it was specifically said 1.33 - -4/3. This is really forgery on the content.
DVD magazines, who screams if there is a square blob in the scan, does not seem to care about the format.
Mai 2006, updated for Pan&Scan 2/01/2015
Jean Paul Lehmann.