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Post #1432641

Parent topic
Nezha Conquers the Dragon King (1979) - BBC 1.66:1 & Theatrical 2.35:1 preservations (Released)
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Date created
27-May-2021, 9:46 PM
Last modified
27-May-2021, 9:58 PM
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Reason for edit
Adding combining dot above to mark reoccurring decimal and adding additional thought to end.

The film now has an official 2K transfer and English subtitles (which are possibly different from those on the Taiwanese DVD, but I don’t have that to compare them), which have been available from IP addresses in the UK and Ireland for some months in an online Chinese Cinema Season.

It is in 2.39:1, when, considering how it looks to have been made in 1.375:1 and protected for 2.39:1, it could have been optimised for 16:9 TVs by presenting it in 1.7̇:1, and that wouldn’t have shown anything we weren’t meant to see and wouldn’t loose anything essential. Less tolerable than that (which does reproduce how it was shown in cinemas), it suffers very badly from DVNR (which films in cinemas around 1980 definitely would not have had).

Yet, considering the obscurity of the Shanghai Animation Film Studio productions outside Chinese-speaking countries, and the attitude of the studio’s current owners to its back catalogue, I can’t imagine this film ever getting a Criterion-worthy treatment, and one has to grateful that it hasn’t been subjected to the same kind of “restoration” that Uproar in Heaven is now only officially available in.

Mentioned on the film’s own page is that one of the season’s organisers is looking for people’s memories of the BBC’s English-language version. She doesn’t seem to have considered VHS copies of it still existing, or at least a transfer of one being in circulation online – or is maybe looking specially for the impact it had on UK residents who saw it as children?