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A Tale Of Two Sisters Region 2 DTS DVD review

Discussion in 'Movie Forum' started by Sigismund, Feb 1, 2005.

  1. Sigismund

    Sigismund
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    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR BGCOLOR="#5A5A5A"><TD WIDTH="40">&nbsp;</TD><TD STYLE='font-size: 18px; color: white; text-align: center '>A TALE OF TWO SISTERS</TD><TD WIDTH="40"><A HREF='http://www.totaldvd.net/reviews/discs/certification/UKfifteen.php' TARGET='_blank'><IMG SRC='http://www.totaldvd.net/reviews/discs/certification/images/cert15.gif' ALIGN='RIGHT' ALT='Certificate 15' BORDER='0'></A></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR BGCOLOR="#5A5A5A"><TD WIDTH="120"><TD><TD STYLE='font-size: 10px; color: white; text-align: center'>Reviewed January 2005 by <A HREF="?dvdid=Mark Haywood" STYLE="color: white">Mark Haywood.</A></TD><TD WIDTH="120" STYLE='font-size: 10px; color: white; text-align: right'>

    </TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR><TD COLSPAN="2" VALIGN="TOP"><IMG SRC="http://www.wvip.co.uk/images/dvd/TaleOfTwoSisters/TaleOfTwoSistersR2.jpg" ALT="A TALE OF TWO SISTERS DVD cover artwork" ALIGN="RIGHT"><B>JANGHWA, HONGRYEON (2003)<B><TABLE BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2"><TR><TD WIDTH="65" VALIGN="TOP" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Genres</TD><TD STYLE="font-size: 10px"><A HREF="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/dvdreviews.php?include=exact&searchfield=genre&search_for=HORROR">HORROR</A>, <A HREF="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/dvdreviews.php?include=exact&searchfield=genre&search_for=DRAMA">DRAMA</A>, <A HREF="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/dvdreviews.php?include=exact&searchfield=genre&search_for=MYSTERY">MYSTERY</A>, <A HREF="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/dvdreviews.php?include=exact&searchfield=genre&search_for=THRILLER">THRILLER</A></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2"><TR><TD WIDTH="65" VALIGN="TOP" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Director</TD><TD STYLE="font-size: 10px"><A HREF="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/dvdreviews.php?include=all&searchfield=director&search_for=JI-WOON KIM">JI-WOON KIM</A></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2"><TR><TD WIDTH="65" VALIGN="TOP" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Stars</TD><TD STYLE="font-size: 10px"><A HREF="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/dvdreviews.php?include=all&searchfield=stars&search_for=KAP-SU KIM">KAP-SU KIM</A>, <A HREF="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/dvdreviews.php?include=all&searchfield=stars&search_for=JUNG-AH YUM">JUNG-AH YUM</A>, <A HREF="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/dvdreviews.php?include=all&searchfield=stars&search_for=SU-JEONG LIM">SU-JEONG LIM</A>, <A HREF="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/dvdreviews.php?include=all&searchfield=stars&search_for=GEUN-YEONG MUN">GEUN-YEONG MUN</A></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2"><TR><TD WIDTH="65" STYLE="font-size: 10px"><B>Region</B></TD><TD STYLE="font-size: 10px"><B>2</B> <FONT STYLE="font-size: 10px">(UK)</FONT></TD></TR><TR><TD VALIGN="TOP" WIDTH="65" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Supplier</TD><TD><FONT STYLE="font-size: 10px">Tartan Video. Released Monday 22nd November 2004</FONT></TD></TR>
    <TR><TD VALIGN="TOP" WIDTH="65" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Price</TD><TD><FONT STYLE="font-size: 10px">19.99</FONT></TD></TR>
    <TR><TD VALIGN="TOP" WIDTH="65" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Discs</TD><TD><FONT STYLE="font-size: 10px">2</FONT></TD></TR>
    <TR><TD VALIGN="TOP" WIDTH="65" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Format</TD><TD><FONT STYLE="font-size: 10px">DVD9</FONT></TD></TR>
    <TR><TD VALIGN="TOP" WIDTH="65" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Time</TD><TD><FONT STYLE="font-size: 10px">109 mins.</FONT></TD></TR>
    <TR><TD VALIGN="TOP" WIDTH="65" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Chapters</TD><TD><FONT STYLE="font-size: 10px">16</FONT></TD></TR>
    </TABLE><TABLE BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2"><TR><TD WIDTH="65" VALIGN="TOP" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Picture</TD><TD STYLE="font-size: 10px">Anamorphic Widescreen 1.85:1&nbsp;</TD>
    </TR></TABLE><TABLE BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2"><TR><TD WIDTH="65" VALIGN="TOP" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Sound</TD><TD STYLE="font-size: 10px">Korean Dolby Digital 5.1<BR>Korean <IMG SRC="http://www.totaldvd.net/images/dts.gif" ALIGN="ABSMIDDLE" BORDER="0" ALT="DTS Soundtrack"> 5.1</TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2"><TR><TD WIDTH="65" VALIGN="TOP" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Subtitles</TD><TD STYLE="font-size: 10px">English</TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2"><TR><TD WIDTH="65" VALIGN="TOP" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Case</TD><TD STYLE="font-size: 10px">Amaray</TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2"><TR><TD WIDTH="65" VALIGN="TOP" STYLE="font-size: 10px">Extras</TD><TD STYLE="font-size: 10px"><b>Disc One</b> - UK Exclusive Director’s Commentary<BR>Commentary With Director And Cast<BR>Commentary With Director, Director Of Photography and Lighting Director<BR><b>Disc Two</b> - Creating A Tale Of Two Sisters<BR>Deleted Scenes With Director’s Commentary<BR>Interviews<BR>Stills Gallery</TD></TR></TABLE>
    </TD></TR></TABLE>

    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="2" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR BGCOLOR="#5A5A5A"><TD WIDTH="100" STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>The Movie</B></TD><TD STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>10</B></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR><TD STYLE='text-align: justify; font-size: 10px'><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">I knew nothing about <b>A Tale Of Two Sisters</b> before being sent two plain-looking PR discs to review. I sat down with a little trepidation to watch the movie, not quite sure what to expect – something Ju-on: The Grudge style or would this be a Sympathy For Mr. Vengeance type affair? As it happens it falls into neither category, but now I’ve experienced Ji-woon Kim’s masterpiece of direction I want <I>everybody</I> to see what I now regard as a South Korean classic. The cinematography is simply fantastic – the movie is filmed in a way that resonates with my personal preferences – lots of slightly quirky camera angles, some beautiful scenery shots, and a house that is made to appear creepy and alive with the torment of those that live there. Just in case I haven’t made myself clear - I <b><I>really</I></b> like this movie!</p><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">As for plot… well this is one of those occasions when to share anything other than the obvious would be to give the game away – and believe me, when you <I>truly</I> understand the story the sense of “Eureka” is worth every quizzical moment of perplexing furrow browing that finally leads to that enlightenment. Janghwa, Hongryeon – the film’s Korean title – starts in a hospital, with Su-mi (Su-jeong Lim) being questioned by a doctor. The room is large and sparsely decorated, and the two actors sit at a table opposite each other with the young girl clearly having been traumatised, and virtually catatonic. Cut to outdoor scene with Su-mi and her sister Su-Yeon being driven home by their father; Su-mi is clearly better, but those around her are obviously concerned for her fragile health/state of mind. The two girls are close, and despite an air of carefree attitude to life it is clear that beneath the loving surface a cauldron of emotion lies ready to explode. And explode it does: the dinner guest scene really sets things up nicely, reminding me of the scene from that strangest of strange movies Eraserhead. (There’s also a clear reference to Hitchcock’s Psycho shower scene at one point – the screechy violins are unmistakeable.) It’s here that the horror really begins – not jump out of your seat type horror, although it has its moments, but deeply disturbing type stuff - <I>creepy, tormenting… chilling</I>.</p><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">The Father/Stepmother/Two Daughters unit lends for some classic psychological drama, with twists and turns that make movies like the aforementioned Ju-on: The Grudge and Sympathy For Mr. Lawrence seem simple, straight-forward affairs! The satisfaction of finally “getting it” makes the movie-watching experience all the more satisfying – even it if does (it did with me!) take a couple of attempts to fully understand proceedings. And that’s the beauty of A Tale Of Two Sisters – it’s one of those movies that remain interesting even after multiple viewings, so that its complexities can be shared with family and friends, divulging further secrets along the way. I need to say it one more time I said – I really enjoyed this movie!</p></TD></TR></TABLE>

    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="2" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR BGCOLOR="#5A5A5A"><TD WIDTH="100" STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>Picture</B></TD><TD STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>8</B></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="2" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR><TD STYLE='text-align: justify; font-size: 10px'><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">Image quality is excellent, with a little edge enhancement sometimes noticeable but never obtrusive. Reds in particular have a solid look to them, enhancing the few scenes where a little blood splatter crops up! There is a certain quality about the filmography that I really appreciated, artistic camera angles and a slow, deliberate build-up. A lot of the movie is shot in the family home meaning that there are a number of dark, foreboding scenes and overall these are handled well with video noise never becoming an issue for me.</p><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">The filmic style used in A Tale Of Two Sisters means that for much of the time the camera is focussed on one or other of the main character’s faces, which means that it is necessary for the actors really <I>feel</I> the part they’re playing whilst at the same time making sure that that they don’t go overboard and end up appearing “hammy” (something all to obvious in the recent release The Grudge). The many close-up shots not only look detailed and sharp, but also show just how excellent the actors are at this difficult art, frequently speaking volumes whilst perfectly silent. Top stuff.</p></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <P STYLE='text-align: center'><IMG SRC="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/makeimage.php?image=TaleOfTwoSisters/TaleOfTwoSisters_1.jpg" ALT="A TALE OF TWO SISTERS"></P>

    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="2" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR BGCOLOR="#5A5A5A"><TD WIDTH="100" STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>Sound</B></TD><TD STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>8</B></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="0" CELLSPACING="2" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR><TD STYLE='text-align: justify; font-size: 10px'><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">It’s always a little difficult knowing how to rate a movie’s audio when for much of the time it’s dialogue based, but here I think it’s pretty straight forward – A Tale Of Two Sisters harbours a solid Korean soundtrack, whether in DTS (768Kbps) or Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kbps) flavours. There are times when the soundtrack simply comes alive, fully enhancing the eeriness, or sheer horror of proceedings. Audio can be subtle, or full on in your face – either way the soundtrack compliments the storyline perfectly, shrill and ear-piercing one moment, followed by rich, deep bass shaking the room the next. Whatever’s going on dialogue is always clear, well controlled and perfectly placed.</p></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <P STYLE='text-align: center'><IMG SRC="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/makeimage.php?image=TaleOfTwoSisters/TaleOfTwoSisters_2.jpg" ALT="A TALE OF TWO SISTERS"></P>

    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="2" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR BGCOLOR="#5A5A5A"><TD WIDTH="100" STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>Extras</B></TD><TD STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>10</B></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="2" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR><TD STYLE='text-align: justify; font-size: 10px'><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">Disc One has the movie as well as a UK Exclusive Director’s Commentary, which in all honesty may be of interest to those willing to sit through the fairly tedious process of seeing a question written in English, followed by the translator asking Ji-woon Kim the question in Korean, followed by the director answering in Korean and finally hearing the answer in English… translated again by the translator. This whole process is then repeated, and repeated. Like I say – it does become a little tedious after a while, but although it lasts for almost half an hour it does harbour some interesting insights. Having said that, there are many more insights to be found in the two audio/subtitled commentaries featuring the director, cast etc. If you’ve had trouble understanding the movie the answers can be found here, and the director/cast commentary is definitely worth a “listen”.</p><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">Disc Two holds the bulk of supplemental features – more interviews and insights into “Sisters” – as well as… er, hang on a sec… let me count them… yep, <I>twelve</I> deleted scenes, all with director’s commentary. I found virtually all the deleted scenes had some merit – this isn’t the usual thrown together set of scenes that often seems to so often be the case with DVD releases. Listening to Ji-woon Kim explain his motives etc. during these deleted scenes had me wanting to watch the movie all over again. So I did… for the third time! Following the deleted scenes are a number of outtakes, although this seems a bit of a misnomer to me – they’re more like a continuation of deleted, alternative scenes.</p><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">It is important that all these extras should be viewed <I>after</I> the movie, otherwise the whole story would very likely be completely spoiled – and that would really be a shame.</p><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">To sum up – these supplemental features are insightful, interesting and, most importantly, easily managed to hold my attention throughout, making this Region 2 UK release is a rarity in my eyes.</p></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <P STYLE='text-align: center'><IMG SRC="http://www.totaldvd.net/cgi-bin/makeimage.php?image=TaleOfTwoSisters/TaleOfTwoSisters_3.jpg" ALT="A TALE OF TWO SISTERS"></P>
    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="2" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR BGCOLOR="#5A5A5A"><TD WIDTH="100" STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>Verdict</B></TD><TD STYLE="color: white; font-size: 10px"><B>9</B></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="2" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR><TD STYLE='text-align: justify; font-size: 10px'><P STYLE="font-size: 10px">I am thoroughly impressed - not only with A Tale Of Sisters, but also with this UK Tartan Video release. I recommend owning this DVD.</p></TD></TR></TABLE>
    <TABLE WIDTH="100%" BORDER="0" CELLPADDING="2" CELLSPACING="0" ALIGN="CENTER"><TR BGCOLOR="#5A5A5A"><TD>&nbsp;</TD></TR></TABLE>
    <P STYLE="text-align: center"><A HREF="http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/CATALOGUE/TV3509/totaldvdonlin-21" target="_blank">A Tale Of Two Sisters<IMG SRC="http://www.totaldvd.net/images/buy.gif" ALIGN="ABSMIDDLE" WIDTH="108" HEIGHT="36" BORDER="0" ALT="Buy A Tale Of Two Sisters now" target="_blank"></A></P>
     
  2. archfiendkain

    archfiendkain
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    Quite simply one of the best films, of any genre, ever made. For real quality cinema Asia is the place to look.
     
  3. spuddy01

    spuddy01
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    I've had this for a While but didnt get round to watching it will have to dust it off and give it a view tonight after reading that review!! :thumbsup:
     
  4. T123VOR

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    I've recently bought this but I was saving it up for a 10 hour movie marathon on my new setup i'm getting together so could be a month yet!- looks like it will be worth the wait...

    Good review:smashin:

    Trevor
     
  5. smashed

    smashed
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    I would give this film a good solid 8, but I have had no inclination to watch it again since I first saw it.
     

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