'Alexander: The Ultimate Cut' - High-Def Digest Review - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 06-23-2014, 12:09 PM
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Default 'Alexander: The Ultimate Cut' - High-Def Digest Review

Josh has reviewed 'Alexander: The Ultimate Cut'. Find out what he thought of Oliver Stone's latest stab at the material.

Full review here:
http://bluray.highdefdigest.com/1078..._ultimate.html
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Old 06-23-2014, 12:36 PM
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Great review Josh! Such a shame about the PQ and AQ of this new cut. Nice to know that the theatrical cut looks and sounds great at least (that too is my favourite version of the film). I am still looking forward to seeing this Ultimate Cut though.

One thing to point out in your review though is when you said this: "However, I went back and checked the prior 'Alexander Revisited' Blu-ray (which splits the movie onto two discs at the intermission break), and that one looks just as bad as the Ultimate Cut despite having more disc space to breathe." Sure, they put the movie onto two discs...however they put it onto two 25gb single layer discs. I think they did that because of the HD DVD version of it that they released at the same time (to keep the releases identical).
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Old 06-23-2014, 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by theHDphantom View Post
One thing to point out in your review though is when you said this: "However, I went back and checked the prior 'Alexander Revisited' Blu-ray (which splits the movie onto two discs at the intermission break), and that one looks just as bad as the Ultimate Cut despite having more disc space to breathe." Sure, they put the movie onto two discs...however they put it onto two 25gb single layer discs. I think they did that because of the HD DVD version of it that they released at the same time (to keep the releases identical).
Good point. I didn't check the Revisited discs to verify whether they were single-layer or dual-layer.
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Old 06-23-2014, 02:42 PM
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Has any fan tried to go the opposite direction and make a shorter?

Perhaps, "Alexander: The TL;DW" cut.

I'd like to see how short it could get. 30 minutes?
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:39 PM
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Good review and even though I don't agree with you, I like that someone liking the movie reviewed it.
When the movie came out we (my wife and I) really wanted to love it. We like Oliver Stones work, we like Angelina and also Colin Farrell is a good actor, not to mention Anthony Hopkins. But alas, what a mess. Angelina's accent (btw the same as in Beowulf !) really turned me off. FYI, the explanation for that horrible accent was that the mother came from around the black sea. Then the TOTALLY unnecessary hot and sweaty sex scene with a woman. A woman, really? I read the book on which the movie is loosely based on and there is no such a scene.
I have the Revised Final (not so final) cut and will keep that one.
And, too bad that the picture quality is still not A+. With such a budget it should be in the top 25 of all times.
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Old 06-23-2014, 09:29 PM
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So WHO's On First again? Which cut is truly the better cut?
And from the sounds of it, Josh offered to review this movie not realizing it's 4 movies, wow!

Too many versions to fathom. Regarding PQ, in your second picture where you say "The 2.40:1 image lacks detail, frequently smears during motion, and occasionally suffers bad compression artifacts like the following. ", when you click it to full screen it looks like one of those videos that needs to be deinterlaced. Is this the issue here? Did Warner or Josh forget to do this? It is a simple filter but one needs to remember to turn it on (VLC you can't seem to set the default to auto or on and each time you close the program it turns off again)
In the 3rd picture, looking at the detail of each hair in the beard, the revisited cut has the least detail. The other two look quite similar.
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Old 06-24-2014, 01:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Krawk View Post
Too many versions to fathom. Regarding PQ, in your second picture where you say "The 2.40:1 image lacks detail, frequently smears during motion, and occasionally suffers bad compression artifacts like the following. ", when you click it to full screen it looks like one of those videos that needs to be deinterlaced. Is this the issue here? Did Warner or Josh forget to do this? It is a simple filter but one needs to remember to turn it on (VLC you can't seem to set the default to auto or on and each time you close the program it turns off again)
The artifact I sampled there is very momentary. While it kind of looks similar to an interlacing issue, I don't think that's what it is. If that were the case, it would be more pervasive throughout.

It's definitely not my error in taking the screencap. That shot stood out very badly to me when I was watching the disc in my Blu-ray player at 1080p24 on my projector. I made note of the time code and found the shot again later on my computer.

Quote:
In the 3rd picture, looking at the detail of each hair in the beard, the revisited cut has the least detail. The other two look quite similar.
Make sure you enlarge the images to full size. I see a big difference between the Theatrical and Ultimate. Look at the scar above Hopkins' right eye (screen left). You can see stitch marks in the Theatrical that aren't at all visible in the Ultimate. I've blown up a portion of the frame and highlighted areas of interest:



Admittedly, these have been scaled-up (and mildly compressed), so they're not precisely what's encoded on the disc. But still, the Ultimate transfer is downright blurry in comparison.
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Old 06-24-2014, 02:19 AM
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A turd is still a turd no matter how much you polish it. They are spending way too much money and effort on this movie to make it right. Maybe the should had just made it properly in the first place ten years ago.
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Old 06-24-2014, 09:39 AM
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A turd is still a turd no matter how much you polish it. They are spending way too much money and effort on this movie to make it right. Maybe the should had just made it properly in the first place ten years ago.
I hear what you're saying. However with me, I had done a high school report/essay on Alexander The Great and knew a lot about his history and what he had done. Then the movie came out. I didn't catch it in theaters but got the theatrical cut on DVD the day it came out and enjoyed it thoroughly. I enjoyed it so much because I already knew about the life of Alexander and was impressed with the accuracy of the film.

To me, this isn't a film like Troy or Gladiator where you can just watch it and be instantly entertained. Alexander is for more of those who really know the back story of the man and can just enjoy the film for what it is and how it presents his life on screen. Like I said, I was impressed with how accurate and authentic the film was and personally I wasn't bored for a moment.

Oliver Stone takes great pride in the film and just tries so hard to have everyone like it and appreciate it. Unfortunately, all these different cuts aren't changing the general public's minds. If he ever did do ANOTHER cut of the film, he really should make it under 2 hours in length so it's easier for the audience to sit through.
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Old 06-24-2014, 10:58 AM
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^^ That's the catch...those who are interested in extended and more detailed cuts of the film 'Alexander' are already interested in and familiar with the subject matter.

If someone didn't have an interested in watching it the first time around, it'd be unlikely that a longer version would be more appealing. For those who didn't enjoy the first cut, it most likely wasn't because it was too fast and not in depth enough.

I do appreciate the passion Oliver Stone has for turning this film into his vision...and I could even seen in a few years a Criterion-esque box set of all the different cuts, with documentaries and interviews about the film's history. It would all be very interesting on many levels.

So on one hand, I can't see these ventures in rereleasing resulting in much profit, or expanded audience. It seems purely for the director, and a relatively small selection of fans.

Still, I can appreciate that FAR more than most "double dips" out there.
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