“Reservoir Dogs” (1997 DVD-- not the 2002 which is completely pan-and-scan) appears to be a straight unmatted transfer, although both the 4x3 and letterbox transfers are overcropped on the left side (running comparisons to the 2002 DVD, it appears the 1997 transfers (which might have been the same ones made for LD and VHS) were done to Academy measurements rather than Super 35, but regardless is another unmatted DVD at your disposal).
Wew… the old Disc has a really lot more Image information, compared to the new 4:3 Full Screen Version after 2002.
Seems as if the 1997 US DVD was released 2002 in canada, because my double side canadian DVD, I snatched at eBay has in its credit printings on the packside “printed in canada 2002”.
Regarding “First Blood”: the Full Frame version is widecreen letterboxed in the opening credits, and after that P&S. No matting opened. As the second movie. I thing the third one will be exactly that way, also.
Edit: Regarding Reservoir Dogs, again: Seems as if the French Metropolitan Coffret Collector 3DVD Edition from 2004 also has a open matted Version, Showing even mor as the old Artisan US Disc. It is in PAL and Region 2:
NTSC FS: https://www.dropbox.com/s/xabplkqo25nlj5o/Reservoir Dogs US.png?dl=0
PAL FS: https://www.dropbox.com/s/2krygari89bufmk/Reservoir Dogs FR.png?dl=0
Wow, I did not realize they released FS DVDs in European countries that recently. Learn something new every day-- a shame about the blown-out highlights (I have seen a 35mm print of “Reservoir Dogs” in 2008, which looked closer to the green tint than the 1997’s reds, but it was much more subtle on the print. I remember being surprised at how good it looked considering it was a Super 35 optical blow-up, having seen a print of “Independence Day” the week before which was typically murky). How does the WS framing compare on the PAL versus the 2002 NTSC’s WS?
Having mentioned “Ronin” a page ago, I went through the whole film and realized I was very wrong about it; this is a pan-and-scan transfer, just one that’s mostly unmatted at the bottom and rarely center-cropped. The few full-frame shots clearly indicate it was not shot “common top” but with a similar frame-line to Cameron’s Abyss/T2 chart (if not the same exact one). Given how cartoonish these shots look unmatted (“Ronin” was almost entirely shot with wide-angle lenses), it’s understandable why the whole 4x3 presentation wasn’t a straight unmatted transfer.
Right now I’m looking through “The Fifth Element”, which is clearly a film that only wanted Super 35 for its lenses. It’s probably where the idea that most Super 2.35:1 films completely hard-matte their VFX comes from. Technical constraints are certainly a factor, but on “The Fifth Element” the CG shots were hard-matted only for artistic reasons (http://www.vfxhq.com/spotlight97/9707b.html)-- Digital Domain was hoping to render at 1.66:1. Within the first 30 minutes, most of it is center-cropped within a 16x9 frame height (and I mean if you overlay the 4x3 and 16x9-enhanced transfers on the 1997 R1 disc they align almost perfectly), some non-CG shots are tightened further, and there’s pixels at most of extra vertical information in the CG shots. Only one clip so far-- the “KEEP CLEAR” shot in Korben’s apartment-- is expanded further than 16x9 height, but not by much. If anyone has a 16x9 HDTV cap of this film (and “Ronin” for that matter), I’d be very interested in seeing it just to find out if they went with the same framing methodology (or if it’s completely pan-and-scan).
RE: Rambo, only the 2008 film was Super 35. The first three were all anamorphic.