Frequently asked questions

These are the obvious ones that I can think of. Feel free to ask anything not answered here.

You're a bit lacking in up-to-date movie reviews, aren't you?

I work hours which pretty much prohibit cinema-going during the week and I'm not prepared to go at the weekend, when it'll be full of in-bred plebs who will ruin my experience with their chatter and eating and whatever. I do take the occasional day off to see something during the day with my father. But I don't tend to review them as there are plenty of sites that cover the current Hollywood output.

What's in release details?

It's fairly self-explanatory, really. For each movie reviewed, we provide release details, which are:

  • the releasing studio (eg Columbia Tri Star, MGM, etc)
  • country and year of origin
  • UK running time

Where it's a direct-to-video [DTV] movie, I try to include either the original production company information or the international distributer. TV movies just say TVM.

And country codes are as follows:

Code Country
AUS Australia
CAN Canada
FRA France
GER Germany
NZ New Zealand
SERB Serbia
SWE Sweden
UK Well, duh!
USA Ditto

Why is the running time you've listed different from the version I have?

Movies seen at the cinema often have different running times because the certification boards in the UK and the USA work with very different ratings systems which leads to a few seconds here and there being trimmed for different reasons (the BBFC is more lenient on sex and far stricter on violence than its US counterpart, the MPAA).

Running times in the UK for DVD and videos are generally about 4% shorter than in North America for the same movie. This is because the UK, most of Western Europe, and our good friends in Australia and New Zealand use the PAL format for TV signals. In North America, they use the NTSC format. Unlike NTSC, PAL shows images at 25 frames per second and not 24. One frame per second faster = 4% shorter running length.

Michael Demtschyna has written a comprehensive article on the subject. He adds that the PAL system raises the vocal pitch slightly, which might be why the American Idol contestants sound so bloody awful. As they use PAL in Australia, it certainly doesn't explain Casey Donovan.

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