PolySciFi Blog

Wednesday, June 08, 2005


Caveat Emptor

BoingBoing links today to a collection of crappy art from bootleg DVDs. Most feature inexpert photoshopping to create something that looks like the real cover; often they cut and paste the credits bar from a different movie. Which is why there's a Revenge of the Sith DVD that appears to have been directed by Bruckheimer and star Steve Buscemi. (I'd actually love to see Revenge of the Sith directed by Bruckheimer with Steve Buscemi. I'd pay through the nose to see that movie. Hollywood, are you listening?) Also worth noting is the copy of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind that boasts that critics have called the movie "...Too self-absorbed to fully connect with an audience." As you would imagine, the DVDs themselves are none too well-produced, often featuring subtitle tracks copied from other movies, as is the case with this fantastic edition of Catch Me If You Can:

Jack Valenti can't be happy about this. And when Jack Valenti gets mad, Manny Perry gets furious. (NB: Yes, I know Valenti's retired. But I like to think he's retired so that he can fight piracy without attracting media scrutiny, like Batman). Of course, DVD pirates will get better, and that blows for Hollywood. I've bought two bootleg DVDs myself: DVD-R copies of the difficult-to-find Criterion Editions of Salò and The Killer. Neither one was available to rent or buy in genuine editions for less than $500, so I don't feel too bad about it. And I knew what I was buying; it wasn't made up to be a real DVD, just an exact digital copy of the incredibly expensive original. Criterion Collection editions are kind of the gold standard for bootleggers, as a genuine copy of Salò can fetch more than $700. There's a pretty good resource for identifying Criterion fakes here, with specific entries on known bootlegs. Bootleg merchandise will be the art forgery of our time.


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