Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

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Red Bartlett
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Red Bartlett » Thu Jun 16, 2016 9:13 pm

Woah, why is everyone talking about editing objectionable content? Did I miss something?

Anyway... editing films based on modern tastes is bush league. Romper room. Plain and simple. It's just doo-doo. They'll give you reasons... oh yes, the reason. Sure, some reasons seem good and noble. Some less so. But it's almost always for good, noble reasons.

But it's utterly beside the point of making films. It has no place in the world of making recorded films and documents -- much less so in the world of restoring and caring for them. It's the opposite of film, the opposite of film restoration and the antithesis of film preservation.

It's a practice that literally offers no interest to me. ZERO. I'm already living in my culture and time, what sick mind would desire other recorded documents of time be only like mine? Spare me the bumpers. It does not interest me. It actually offends me more than anything that was decidedly too offensive. What do they think of us?

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Mike Gebert » Fri Jun 17, 2016 10:39 am

It looks like JFK took some content down, which you're not supposed to do for the precise reason demonstrated in this thread.
“Maybe I’m an idealist, but I still think of the movie theater as a cathedral where we all go together to dream the dream together.” —Bernardo Bertolucci

JFK
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Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by JFK » Fri Jun 17, 2016 1:29 pm

After watching 2 shorts in the new Kino set (The Butcher Boy & Coney Island), I made my prior post in this thread.
I deleted this post five hours after having made it, because of a post from another member offended by it.
But I deleted my post too late: others were now commenting on the topics raised by my now deleted post. I'm sorry.

My deleted post, in de-fanged, capsule form, to the best of my recollection ran something like this:
1. In The Butcher Boy, the "She's a Cousin of mine" dialogue card should come, logically,
only after the in-drag Roscoe whispers it, as a suggested defense, to Josephine Stevens.
2. The Coney Island ending should be included as part of the short, not as a supplement.
3. Vocals, with very few exceptions, should be excluded from silent film soundtracks.

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Lonesome Luke
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Lonesome Luke » Sat Jun 18, 2016 9:35 am

JFK wrote: 1. In The Butcher Boy, the "She's a Cousin of mine" dialogue card should come, logically,
only after the in-drag Roscoe whispers it, as a suggested defense, to Josephine Stevens.
2. The Coney Island ending should be included as part of the short, not as a supplement.
3. Vocals, with very few exceptions, should be excluded from silent film soundtracks.
Sounds reasonable.

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bigshot
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by bigshot » Sat Jun 18, 2016 11:59 am

Sounds reasonable to me too. I don't know why people get fussy over honest criticism of disc releases.

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Rodney » Sat Jun 18, 2016 2:08 pm

bigshot wrote:Sounds reasonable to me too. I don't know why people get fussy over honest criticism of disc releases.
Well, there's a difference between "I don't like vocalizations on sound tracks," which is perfectly honest and respectful; and "people who put vocalizations in sound tracks should be punished and shamed."
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syd
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by syd » Sun Jun 19, 2016 7:52 pm

In The Blue Bird (1919) there is a scene, toward the movie's end,
that shows a ship carrying children yet unborn to their birth destinations.
The scene consists of a ship slowly crossing the water and a cutaway
to a large group of mothers waving an arm to beckon the children
toward them. Given how slow the ship is moving, this was, IMHO,
a subtle hint by director Maurice Tourneur for choral voices to be heard.

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Richard Warner » Mon Jun 20, 2016 3:42 am

I have an unanswered question from earlier in this thread and I'm wondering if a kind soul who owns the new Kino set could satisfy my curiosity. Here are the intertitles used in earlier editions of Day Dreams and The Love Nest. Some work, while others kill the gags stone dead. Which of these (if any) are used in the new Kino set?

JUST BEFORE THE BOTTLE OF PORT GAG IN LOVE NEST:
Keaton Plus: "What are you doing now? I said all hands to port!"
Masters of Cinema 2006 set: "What are you doing now? Since you came aboard you haven't done a thing right." (gag ruined)
Kino Ultimate 2011: "Why are you still on the starboard deck? Didn't you hear me order port?"
French Arte 2015: "Do what you're here for!" (gag ruined)

JUST BEFORE THE STREET CLEANER SEQUENCE IN DAY DREAMS
Art of Buster Keaton and Masters of Cinema 2006: "Dearest, owing to a minor accident, I have been forced to abandon my work at the hospital. I am now on Wall Street, where I have been cleaning up in a big way."
Kino Ultimate 2011: Due to a slight mishap, I have left my position at the hospital. I now work in the financial district, where I am cleaning up in a big way."
French Arte 2015: "Something came up and I've had to stop the operations. I'll now be working at the Stock Exchange. I know many financiers." (gag ruined)

JUST BEFORE THE "POLICE CHIEF" DREAM IN DAY DREAMS
Art of Buster Keaton and Masters of Cinema 2006: "Dearest, the Crowd was enthusiastic for my performance, but the theatre does not suit me. I am now in the position of having the police follow my every step."
Kino Ultimate 2011: "The audience response was so overwhelming, I have been summoned to appear before a police assembly."
French Arte 2015: "A huge success! The crowd got so excited, I had to make a quick exit..." (gag ruined)

I'm hoping that the new Kino (and forthcoming MOC Blu-Ray) don't follow the French Arte set, which manages to ruin all three gags!
Any answer regarding the intertitles used on the new Kino set will be much appreciated!
Thanks,
Richard

frankebe
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by frankebe » Mon Jun 20, 2016 1:23 pm

Regarding those intertitles...

JUST BEFORE THE STREET CLEANER SEQUENCE IN 'DAY DREAMS'
New Kino Set: Uses the French Arte thing about "...I know many financiars" and the gag is ruined.

But you forgot about the most important story-connecting intertitles in this movie:

FATHER TO KEATON IN THE BEGINNING OF 'DAY DREAMS'
Previous Kino (2011): "Are you even capable of earning a living?" (A funny retort.)
New Kino: "Just one question... Will you be able to provide for her?" (Humour is demolished)

KEATON TO FATHER
Previous K: "I think so. to prove it, I'll go to the city and achieve success. If I fail, I'll come back and shoot myself."
New Kino: "Yes, I think so... And to prove it, I'll work very hard. If I fail, I'll kill myself" (no implied reference to a gun, which diminishes the following line from the Father)

FATHER TO KEATON
Previous K: "Fine. I'll lend you my revolver" (LEND... heh...)
New Kino: "Fine. You can use my revolver" (meh)

And then to conclude this conversation at the very end of the movie...

KEATON—AFTER HE SHOOTS THE GUN OFF-SCREEN... he comes walking into the room...
Previous K: "I missed" (hilarious)
New Kino: "I'm sorry, I failed. What can I do to make up for it".... :x

And as if these intertitles aren't comedy-killing enough, the music is incredibly slow and mournful, absolutely tragic, making the end of this film worthy of being the last thing you ever watch before committing suicide.

Too bad, because the image is certainly improved over the previous Kino set. Although I miss the still-picture inserts a lot. I will continue to use the previous Kino release of this movie when I show it to anyone. I mean... I don't want my friends to DIE because I showed them a Keaton film!

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Richard Warner » Mon Jun 20, 2016 2:01 pm

Thanks for the reply to one of my questions, frankebe. All the other points you mention match my French Arte set. It seems that Lobster faithfully translated the foreign intertitles back into English, but those foreign titles were originally changes from American "punning" or "wordplay" originals which wouldn't translate intact!
If you look closely at The Love Nest, you can even see Keaton mouthing the word "port" before he runs off to get the bottle.
Milestone's "The Cook" is much funnier with the Patricia Tobias titles and Day Dreams works better with either the Jeffrey Vance titles on the David Shepard version or the titles on the Kino 2011, presumably done by Bret Wood and Bruce Lawton. Oh well, I suppose it's highly unlikely that the new Masters of Cinema set will be any different. It's a real shame to see gags ruined in this fashion when so much hard work has gone into the restoration and music.

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Red Bartlett
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Red Bartlett » Tue Jun 21, 2016 9:56 pm

Those edited titles are brutal! :cry: I had ordered the MOC set, but if I am to assume that it's the same as the new Kino -- I'm wondering if I even need it now, and if I can't just be happy with previous my 2011 Kino. Is the jump in image quality worth it? Then again there are the Arbuckles... and some commentaries. :?

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Oh Doctor!

Unread post by JFK » Tue Jun 21, 2016 11:01 pm

I have just watched Oh Doctor! from the Kino Blu-Ray set
(having previously watched The Butcher Boy and parts of Coney Island)

Here is a description, taken from my illegible notes, of some scenes near Oh Doctor!'s conclusion


1. Roscoe, on the roof, gets his mustache removed by a bullet (the number one cause of hair loss in silent comedies)
2. Roscoe hoists a brick and throws it Al
3. The brick connects with St John, propelling him backwards to the roof's skylight/air shaft
4. Preceded by a lingering cloud of debris, Al falls into his room below, from ceiling to floor,
with the scene ending as his accomplice (Alice Mann?) enters from the right side of screen
5. Roscoe, still on the roof, reacts to Al's plummet and starts running to screen left
6. Roscoe runs past the roof door/stairway entrance, then doubles back and opens the door
7. Alice Mann, at the closet door (behind which Roscoe's wife is imprisoned),
reacts to something off-screen left and then runs off-screen left
8. Alice crouches next to the unconscious Al and lifts the stolen goods from his body
9. Roscoe's wife breaks free from the closet

The problem with the sequencing is that Alice, in scene 7,
is reacting to an event that she already knew about in scene 4.


Could this slight problem, without any footage being removed,
be remedied if scene 5 followed scene 3,
followed by scene 7, then scene 4, then scene 6,
then scene 8, then scene 9 ?
Or would this be much too jumpy?
Another (possible even worse) solution would be
inserting scene 7 in the midst of scene 4
Last edited by JFK on Wed Jun 22, 2016 12:46 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Tommie Hicks
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Tommie Hicks » Tue Jun 21, 2016 11:02 pm

Regarding the Arbuckle shorts, Lobster has better footage (though not the whole film in many instances) than the previously released DVDs with these titles:
THE BUTCHER BOY
FATTY AT CONEY ISLAND
OUT WEST
GOOD NIGHT NURSE

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Richard Warner » Tue Jun 21, 2016 11:56 pm

I'll try to help Red Bartlett in his dilemma about the MOC set. As a European Kickstarter backer, I got the French Arte DVD set. In a posting on another Nitrateville thread, I said I preferred 27 of the 32 new restorations. The exceptions were:
BACK STAGE (more complete on Kino's Keaton & Arbuckle Vol. 2)
THE BOAT (the Kino 2011 print looks cleaner to me, but not by much)
DAY DREAMS (this new restoration is superb as far as bringing together all the surviving footage is concerned, but the inter-titles ruin it. I prefer the 2011 Kino or even the older David Shepard version as ENTERTAINMENT)
LOVE NEST (slightly spoiled for me by the ruined "port" gag - but this may well have been fixed on Kino/MOC - nobody's responded to my question on that)
ELECTRIC HOUSE (the 2011 looks better to me, others disagree)
In addition to these, I have a personal preference for Milestone's "The Cook". The new set's titles mostly follow the original Norsk/Eastman restoration, with some very odd wording at times, but the image quality of the new Lobster is way better.

As for the rest of the new set ........ it's WONDERFUL! I love ALL of the music (yes, even those vocals on Coney Island) and most of the prints are great. A few (very few) look better on the 2011 Kino, but that was sourced from Rohauer / Cohen materials unavailable to Lobster. I'm 64 now and can't imagine a scenario developing in my lifetime where ALL the owners and restorers of Keaton will happily work together. If you want the best overall set of the 19 Keaton shorts, you need the new MOC (or Kino) and the 2011 set. The new set will also give you most of the Arbuckles in the best possible shape.
If I could be assured that the few glitches on my Arte set had been fixed for the MOC, I'd buy it!
Richard

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Red Bartlett
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Red Bartlett » Wed Jun 22, 2016 12:28 pm

Thanks Richard!

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Mark Zimmer » Fri Jul 08, 2016 2:30 pm

Well, sounds like sticking with the old Kino set is the way to go. It's a shame that this was managed to be bungled so badly. :evil: Honestly, when you have an English-titled film, why on earth would you go to the trouble and expense of double-translating it and thereby strip it of humor?

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Richard Warner » Sat Jul 09, 2016 2:56 am

Mark, I don't think you should dismiss a 32-film set because of my comments about some messed-up inter-titles on one film. Red Bartlett reacted in a similar way, which is why I tried to stress the many plus points of this set above. Given the level of over-reaction to my few negative comments here, I'm beginning to wish I'd kept quiet. Regarding any other minor quibbles I may have had with this set, I can't stress enough that all I've viewed is the French Arte set. There may be improvements on the Kino and forthcoming MOC sets, I just don't know.
Currently, I'm working my way through the French Arte set of Chaplin Essanays. Fantastic restorations, but something was definitely wrong with POLICE. Rather than post anything here on Nitrateville, I did an advanced search and, sure enough, a posting from David Shepard confirmed there were problems with this film on the Arte (due to time constraints) which were fixed on the Flicker Alley release.
One final comment on DAY DREAMS. It's unfair to blame Lobster Films entirely for any inter-title problems. The witty titles we're used to ("cleaning up on Wall Street", "police following my every move") were written in more recent years (by Jeffrey Vance I think), although it's pretty obvious that the film must have had similar punning titles originally. To the best of my knowledge, there are no surviving American prints with original titles. All the footage comes from European prints with foreign titles, plus the chunk of title-less footage included in THIRTY YEARS OF FUN and THE GREAT STONE FACE. The American jokes in the titles were lost back in 1922 when foreign distributors created their own titles and it's those foreign titles which have been re-translated into English by Lobster. Now, the folks at Lobster speak very good English, but it's not their first language, so they may not have caught the intended puns.
I'll shut up now before I do any further damage (cue deafening applause) ...
Richard

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Jonathan » Sat Jul 09, 2016 9:09 am

Richard Warner wrote:Mark, I don't think you should dismiss a 32-film set because of my comments about some messed-up inter-titles on one film. Red Bartlett reacted in a similar way, which is why I tried to stress the many plus points of this set above. Given the level of over-reaction to my few negative comments here, I'm beginning to wish I'd kept quiet. Regarding any other minor quibbles I may have had with this set, I can't stress enough that all I've viewed is the French Arte set. There may be improvements on the Kino and forthcoming MOC sets, I just don't know.
Richard, there will be improvements in the MoC set - and I believe it's due to your not keeping quiet! Your comments here on the intertitle problems were linked in this thread on criterionforum, where Eureka picked up on them just 12 hours before replication and the release was delayed in order to correct the issues, as MichaelB's post today on that thread confirms (he previously posted about all this in more detail a few days ago but I cannot find that now).

Anyway, well done, Richard - and everyone else who helped to make the corrections possible!

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Richard Warner » Sat Jul 09, 2016 10:21 am

Thanks Jonathan, that's great news! I said I'd "double dip" and buy the MoC if they fixed the problems and I've just pre-ordered it on Amazon UK. This has made my day. Oh, the power of the internet and NitrateVille...........
Richard

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by bigshot » Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:13 am

I'm really glad I followed my instincts and bought the Masters of Cinema set. I'm tired of having to buy multiple copies of blu-rays to get the version with the problems ironed out.

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by azjazzman » Sat Jul 09, 2016 6:33 pm

bigshot wrote:I'm really glad I followed my instincts and bought the Masters of Cinema set. I'm tired of having to buy multiple copies of blu-rays to get the version with the problems ironed out.

Is "One Week" too contrasty on the MOC set? That is my only real gripe with the Kino set. Kind of like "The Rink" on the Chaplin Mutuals set.

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bigshot
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by bigshot » Sat Jul 09, 2016 6:42 pm

I'll check when it arrives. They delayed the release to fix problems.

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by s.w.a.c. » Wed Jul 13, 2016 10:25 am

Also have the MoC set on pre-order, if I'm lucky, it'll arrive in time for my birthday, potential Canada Post strike/lockout notwithstanding.
Twinkletoes wrote:Oh, ya big blister!

Tboneator64
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Tboneator64 » Wed Jul 13, 2016 1:32 pm

s.w.a.c. wrote:Also have the MoC set on pre-order, if I'm lucky, it'll arrive in time for my birthday, potential Canada Post strike/lockout notwithstanding.
I hope it arrives for you without a hitch! This back and forth pattern with Canada Post and the Union has become rather annoying, but at least there's been no actual mail disruption, thus far!

CHEERS! :D

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Tboneator64 » Tue Jul 19, 2016 11:38 am

By the way, is anyone able to clarify whether the upcoming UK Masters Of Cinema Blu-ray version will definitely be Region B locked?

CHEERS! :D

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bigshot
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by bigshot » Wed Jul 20, 2016 11:08 am

Tboneator64 wrote:By the way, is anyone able to clarify whether the upcoming UK Masters Of Cinema Blu-ray version will definitely be Region B locked?
Their other releases are, so I would assume this one would be too.

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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Tboneator64 » Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:17 pm

bigshot wrote:
Tboneator64 wrote:By the way, is anyone able to clarify whether the upcoming UK Masters Of Cinema Blu-ray version will definitely be Region B locked?
Their other releases are, so I would assume this one would be too.
Thank you very much for your post. Still, I wish that Eureka would confirm it on their own website, but they don't seem to bother listing Region Codes at all! Even a displayed Back Cover would likely reveal that information, which for me, would be the ultimate confirmation outside of having the actual disc. I don't trust Amazon or other third party website listings as they are often inaccurate where that information is concerned.

Regarding Eureka, a third party website lists them as having released a mixed bag of Region Bs and Region Frees, with the actual title breakdown, so I guess it's a crapshoot?

Anyway, thanks again for your input!

CHEERS! :D

Tboneator64
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Tboneator64 » Fri Jul 22, 2016 12:49 pm

Tboneator64 wrote:
bigshot wrote:
Tboneator64 wrote:By the way, is anyone able to clarify whether the upcoming UK Masters Of Cinema Blu-ray version will definitely be Region B locked?
Their other releases are, so I would assume this one would be too.
Thank you very much for your post. Still, I wish that Eureka would confirm it on their own website, but they don't seem to bother listing Region Codes at all! Even a displayed Back Cover would likely reveal that information, which for me, would be the ultimate confirmation outside of having the actual disc. I don't trust Amazon or other third party website listings as they are often inaccurate where that information is concerned.

Regarding Eureka, a third party website lists them as having released a mixed bag of Region Bs and Region Frees, with the actual title breakdown, so I guess it's a crapshoot?

Anyway, thanks again for your input!

CHEERS! :D
Hi bigshot!

I've cancelled my order for the time being, partly due to an unfortunate bank related glitch.

If you could confirm Region once you receive your set, I'd greatly appreciate this! :)

CHEERS! :)

Tony

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Red Bartlett
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Red Bartlett » Fri Jul 22, 2016 8:15 pm

If you're a silent film fan, you almost have to get a region-free player. Probably the best movie-related purchase I've made thus far.

Tboneator64
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Re: Buster Keaton Short Films Collection 1917-1923 Blu Ray

Unread post by Tboneator64 » Sat Jul 23, 2016 10:58 am

Red Bartlett wrote:If you're a silent film fan, you almost have to get a region-free player. Probably the best movie-related purchase I've made thus far.
Unfortunately, I simply lack the funds for a standalone Region Free Blu-ray Player at present.

However, I do have an external Pioneer Blu-ray Burner that I use on my PC. I've also downloaded free Leawo Blu-ray Player software, and one of its features is its supposed ability to play Blu-ray discs from all 3 Regions by changing the code in the Forced Region A/B/C check box, which according to Leawo's documentation, can be done an unlimited number of times.

For me, the caveat is that I haven't been able to prove to myself conclusively that this feature actually works for my setup. I say this because when I change the Forced Region from "A" to "B", all of my Region A Blu-rays still play. Surely, at least some of them shouldn't play back, right? I've tried this with Region A stamped BDs for Criterion; Disney; Fox; and VCI, and every one of them playback on the Region B Forced playback setting! I'm thinking at the very least, the Fox Blu-ray should be Region Locked, no?

Therein lies my dilemma, at present! :?

CHEERS! :D

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