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Archives for: July 2009

Ghostbusters Home Video Comments

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Jul. 15, 2009 at 2:25 AM , Categories: Spook Central, Home Video
I just made a HUGE multimedia update to the site. I have added every single still image/frame from the Ghostbusters Criterion Collection laserdisc and the Ghostbusters 1999 DVD. You can view them on the site (though a fast connection may be required since I have several hundred thumbnails on some pages), or download the original 720x480 images in a zip file.

What prompted me to put up all of the still frames from the Criterion laserdisc and both 1999 DVDs, and make the original 720x480 images available in zip files, is that the new Ghostbusters Blu-Ray doesn't include any of the still image galleries from the 1999 DVD. I can understand why they couldn't or wouldn't use them "as is". Those galleries are the only blemish on the 1999 DVD, and it's primarily because the images are displayed within a very large frame instead of being shown full screen, and the drawings are even shown at an angle instead of being flat-on with the screen; though I also take off major points for the images not being shown in any sort of context (the laserdisc gave LOTS more insight into just what you're looking at). Plus all but one of the drawings listed as "Early NYC Concepts" are actually from The Real Ghostbusters, not the movie. The Blu-Ray would have given Sony the chance to correct these problems. They could have gone back to the original photographic sources, rescanned them in at higher resolutions, and shown everything full screen and flat-on, taking full advantage of the widescreen aspect ratio and higher resolution that Blu-Ray provides. Instead, they just dropped them altogether. Very sad. Two steps forward, ten steps back, Sony. If you have the 1999 DVD (the one with the guys on the cover), I highly suggest that you keep it - whether you decide to buy the Blu-Ray or not.

In the process of doing all of the still images, I decided that it was a great opportunity to find out if something that I had heard about was true. When the 2005 DVD first came out, I had heard that there were new still images on it. So in addition to capturing every still on the 1999 DVD, I did them all on the 2005 DVD as well - then compared them to each other. There were indeed some new still images on the 2005 DVD: three new Terror Dog photos. There was also one less logo drawing. Gain three, lose one. But what I never heard anyone talk about four years ago, and maybe no one ever knew because they never compared the two sets of DVD images to each other, is that a Photoshop "oil painting" filter was applied to the images on the 2005 DVD, thus making them look horrible and ruining all of the details in them. You can see this for yourself on the new Ghostbusters 2005 DVD Still Image Comparison page. I'd love to know why Sony would do such a stupid and unnecessary thing like that.

I can now say, without a doubt in my mind, that the Ghostbusters DVD released by Sony in 2005 for Region 1 is the worst piece of shit I have ever seen put onto the DVD medium by a major studio! They remove perfectly good bonus features present in the previous DVD release from 1999; they screw up the menu design just so they can have widescreen menus (though all still images are left in 4:3 ratio); they alter the colors and brightness in the movie; and they apply a Photoshop "oil painting" filter over the still image galleries thus ruining them. Avoid the 2005 DVD like the plague. Get the 1999 DVD (alt link) and the Blu-Ray, which eliminates half of the bonus content from the 1999 DVD but has some new extras plus the higher quality copy of the movie (hopefully not using the 2005 transfer). I have officially removed the Ghostbusters 2005 DVD from my store page because I will not support substandard products.
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Spook Central's Ghostbusters 25th Anniversary Prize Giveaway Winner's List

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Jul. 1, 2009 at 8:49 PM , Categories: Spook Central, Fans, Internet
Image To help celebrate the 25th anniversary of one of the greatest ghost movies ever made - GHOSTBUSTERS - the long-running website, Spook Central: The Ghostbusters Companion, held a prize giveaway from June 8th (the 25th anniversary of Ghostbusters' U.S. theatrical release) to June 22nd 2009 to honor the momentous occasion. Spook Central teamed up with the leading producers of Ghostbusters merchandise to offer up a bevy of giveaways, which included copies of Ghostbusters: The Video Game from Atari, print and digital guides for the video game from Prima Games, Ghostbusters: The Other Side trade paperbacks from IDW Publishing, "There Is No Dana, Only Zuul" T-shirts from Fright Rags, The Real Ghostbusters Volume 1 DVD sets from Time-Life, wall graphics and game skins from Gamer Graffix, and lots of items that Spook Central webmaster Paul Rudoff pulled from his personal collection and For Sale site.

The contest was a greater success than I could have ever imagined. There were 648 eligible entries for the main U.S. & Canada contest (plus 30 ineligible entries), and 26 eligible entries for the side International contest (plus 7 ineligible entries). Below is the full list of winners, along with a brief description of what prize package they won. For more information on the individual prizes, check out the prize image gallery. For legal and reference purposes, a copy of the original official rules can be found on page 2.

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In Loving Memory of Joel Richard Rudoff (July 28, 1944 - January 20, 2014)

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