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*SPOILERS* B5: TLT: Voices in the Dark - *SPOILERS*

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  • #46
    OK... First off, my heart goes out to you non-US folk who have to wait longer for your DVD region's release of TLT.

    HOWEVER- Even though there's no specific rule I could find in the FAQs regarding the subject, the idea of discussing piracy, specifically where to go to find pirated material is frowned upon here.

    I know that some of you folks have stated you will be buying a copy (or two or three) of the disc when it hits your market, but that still doesn't make downloading it right.

    Jan (and Joe and others) are off at the San Diego Con right now having a good time, but also bringing us the latest JMS news straight from the horse's mouth. (Look at SFTV's post about standing there as JMS got a cell call telling him that some project had just been given the go ahead. You don't get much more Johnny-On-The-Spot than that!) Let's not kill her buzz by having them have to put on the moderator hat when she gets back to her room.
    Got movies? www.filmbuffonline.com

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    • #47
      Thanks, Frulad. Actually I was kind of lying low in hopes that somebody would mention *where* it is available. I'd like to make sure it gets squashed.

      But you're right, I do *not* want to get into the great download debate again here and now.

      Jan
      who did bring her Mod hat to San Diego...Homeland Security was puzzled and scanned it several times...one agent was heard to exclaim that it was simply the ugliest thing he'd ever seen.
      "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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      • #48
        Originally posted by frulad View Post
        HOWEVER- Even though there's no specific rule I could find in the FAQs regarding the subject, the idea of discussing piracy, specifically where to go to find pirated material is frowned upon here.

        I know that some of you folks have stated you will be buying a copy (or two or three) of the disc when it hits your market, but that still doesn't make downloading it right.
        It was only me, really, talking about piracy and I agree it isn't right. Please note though that I haven't mentioned ANYTHING at all about where to find pirated material, how to find it or anything like that. Nor will I.

        I was pointing out that it was in the wild, as such, and that it was hard to resist not downloading it because of the long delay before reaching shores outside of the US. (where neither 3rd September or 24th August have not yet been confirmed as I understand it)

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        • #49
          If I'm able, I'll see if I can find out from JMS at the TLT panel today.

          Jan
          "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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          • #50
            Originally posted by Jan View Post
            If I'm able, I'll see if I can find out from JMS at the TLT panel today.

            Jan
            Cool, thanks Jan.

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            • #51
              Originally posted by tarasis View Post
              (where neither 3rd September or 24th August have not yet been confirmed as I understand it)
              24th August is confirmed for the German release.

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              • #52
                Confirmed by whom?

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                • #53
                  Well, got my advance copy yesterday. Sat down to watch it straight after work, and it is EVERYTHING you'll want in a B5 story.

                  It's small, intimate...harks back to some of the great Season 2 episodes in my opinion....the humour is there, you can tell Bruce is in his element again playing Sheridan...he's glad to be back, and you can tell. Galen has a couple of good lines, I'm not a huge fan of the character but he worked for me.

                  The Lochley story is a bit smaller in scope than the Sheridan one, though I really enjoyed the story it was basically "room bound" and felt like it needed something a little better...it was the B-story to the main one, but I enjoyed it.

                  Direction is very different, I loved it...the "floating" camera in the Lochley story is really well done, it's a very different style of shot to traditional sci-fi or Babylon 5 but it really gives it a great feel. There's this really nice shot during the Sheridan story, of the camera shot "behind" or looking "through" the CG shot of the B5 station on the new Minbari ship, it's the war room essentially, but it's a very clever shot....

                  The CG is movie quality, in fact...there's moments where it completely shits on the entire CG work on Rise of the Silver Surfer. There's only one shot on the entire DVD that looks dodgy, it's a Lochley shot as we pan out from the station window into space....though, I've never seen that shot perfected well...I think the Londo one on the Centauri Cruiser was the closest we'll get to that kinda "good" CG shot. But the ships, the hyperspace (and the new 'quantum space' is pretty cool) and basically everything CG related on the DVD put my nightmares of Crusade to rest. It's really well done...

                  The Music is phenominal, some of the cues are lovely...there's a nice throwback now and then to the Main Season 5 theme, also at the end there's a nice little 'montage' of well known and new themes. Christopher Franke has nailed it again, and I'm baffeled as to why this guy doesn't get any high profile movie work...it's just beautiful, keep em coming! My favorite cue is the first shot of Sheridan on Minbar...with this beautiful pulsing little beat as he answers his intercom thingee...it's a great little theme for him, I hope Chris can build on that in the future. There's also a lovely theme as the Lochley story finishes...but it's that once piece of music as Sheridan is introduced which is beautiful...these lovely pulsing beats and chime bells in the background, I wanted more...you'll love it. I'm listening to it right now!

                  The negatives?

                  Not enough characters. Basically 3 per story, so thats 6 characters in total, but unfortunatly only 2 "Regular" B5 cast members. Though all the series regulars are mentioned by name, and a nice quick homage to G'Kar and Franklin 'passing beyond the rim' is a nice touch. Garibaldi is missed, it doesn't feel like Babylon 5 without him...

                  ....certainly the lack of Alien Characters is a bit of an error...you don't see any, with the exception of a couple of Minbari. So thats a shame, but again it wasn't really too much a deterrant because you did have the Prince Regent, looking suspiciously 'EMO-Centauri' in his Haircut. He was a great character, one I'd LOVE to see more of in future installments.

                  But thats it, I can't fault any of it. I loved both stories...I loved being back at Babylon 5 and if anything, it made me appreciate how timeless the series is, still being able to use the same uniforms and designs just shows how before it's time Babylon 5 actually was, or IS as the case may be.

                  Next installment, I want some serious action....I want Sheridan back in ass-kicking mode, with a grumpy Garibaldi by his side telling us "he's too old for this shit" or something and I want all our favorite Characters back, but I DEFINATLY want Londo. I want a war, I want action and I want at least 4mins from Claudia Christian and JMS putting their differences aside, sticking her in the captains chair and letting her loose on some alien scum in a battle to the death.

                  Because one thing this DVD does RIGHT - is give us the promise, give us the hope that this IS the beginning, the beginning of something amazing to come.

                  Bring it on JMS, and bring it on soon.


                  EDIT:

                  ....oh and, in my excitement to get this babble of a review out, I forgot the wonderful CG work and direction of the Starfury scenes....just brilliant, I can't begin to tell you how wonderful this section of the story is.
                  Last edited by Biggs; 07-27-2007, 06:10 PM.

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                  • #54
                    Originally posted by raw_bean View Post
                    Confirmed by whom?
                    I think I read about a WB press release somewhere and some news alerts quoting it a few weeks ago, but I don't have time to search them all right now.

                    For those who are fluent in German:
                    http://www.phantastik-news.de/module...ticle&sid=3088

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                    • #55
                      For the future releases i would hope that they include more:

                      - More lenght to stories
                      - REAL battlescenes (not dream)
                      - More old cast members
                      - A lot more extras/supporting actors on B5 station/planet scenes etc...(on this dvd B5 looks like deserted)

                      Dont get me wrong, i love this release(especially the Sheridan one) but like JMS said it was a test project with modest budget.

                      So i might get my hopes fullfilled cause JMS said almost the same thingies in his interview in gssociety.

                      Does somebody know budget figures on this release ? And how much was B5 series episode budget back in the good old days ?

                      And what about HD release is it Blu-Ray or HD-DVD ?

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                      • #56
                        If the whole damn thing was green screen, they could have simply multiplied "virtual extras". I assumed this movie would actually give us larger crowd scenes than the show.
                        Only a fool fights in a burning house.

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                        • #57
                          Making fully digital photo-real humans as extras would be way, way more expensive than just hiring some extras, something that apparently already reached above their budget. There is a big difference between using CG set work, and using digital actors. The latter are still very tricky to get right, and really, really expensive. It usually is only ever used for stunt work that would be too dangerous, or simply physically impossible, to do physically. Compared to the money it costs to just hire people for the extras, it would probably be a waste.

                          Which doesn't mean JMS isn't aware that future TLT episodes would ideally be bigger in feel than VitD, and that as Joe Nazzaro mentioned, would ideally have more of the cast involved. Which is very much a budget issue, and this quote by JMS from the last CGSocieties production focus articles might be pertinent:
                          And will there be any more Babylon 5 shows in the future? ôAny further B5 DVDs will depend on the sales, and on Warner Brothers giving us sufficient money to take the step of making any subsequent DVDs bigger than this one,ö says Straczynski. ôThis was kind of a test of the concept of making what is essentially a series on DVD, which hasn't really been done before. But it was a test, with a very modest budget. If we do more, they have to be done with a larger budget so we can involve more of our cast members, do bigger FX and locations and the like. If we can't keep making them better, then they shouldn't be done.ö

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                          • #58
                            Originally posted by b5finland View Post
                            Does somebody know budget figures on this release ? And how much was B5 series episode budget back in the good old days ?
                            I can't find the quote, but I've read that all the Warner Premier straight to DVD projects are budgeted at between 3.5 million - 5.5 million USD. I would expect that TLT is going to have a figure around the lower end, this is a bit more than the existing B5 movies whch I think were about 3 million each.

                            1 episode of the original series was about 900000 USD I believe.

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                            • #59
                              I wonder, not that I have any real knowledge of the process except what the actors and JMS have said, if part of the problem with the lack of extras might have had something to do with the green screen filming. I mean, if you're going to have extras they usually need to be *doing* something which is difficult with virtual sets. Even if they're just walking along a corridor I can see where it could be problematic (for a fairly novice director, especially) since for every different shot and take they have to change which way they're facing. From what the actors were saying last night it's a real challenge, not having reference points like furniture and walls and doors. Adding a lot of bacground actors must complicate a scene tremendously. Tracy told about how she had to ask JMS where the door to her quarters was when she did a scene in them because all that was there was the furniture she needed and no walls or anything else.

                              Jan
                              "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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                              • #60
                                That might indeed be a problem, I hadn't even considered that. You'd basically need to choreograph a lot of the extras on a level much closer to the actors. With very little reference points, getting a scene with some crowding right could be pretty hard if you're shooting from multiple angles. It shouldn't be impossible, but with the combination of budget and time constraints, a relatively inexperienced director, and a rather new way of shooting things, it might've been decided not to take that hurdle this disc. Could be one of the things that might be feasible next disc with a bit more experience and a higher time/money budget though, I hope.

                                Though there might also be things for an initial one-off disc that would an issue, like costuming and tailoring all of that to extras, that not be a huge deal on a regular show, but would significantly impact something like VitD's budget.

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