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INTRODUCTION I try to like this magazine, I really do. DVD Review is probably the best of numerous dvd magazines that are on the shelves at present in every newsagent up and down the country. As with every new lifestyle product, be it the latest console, or a TV show; a significant amount of these publications fail as initial excitement and interest in the product wanes. DVD Review magazine has firmly established itself as the leader of the pack and thus deserves acclaim for managing to hold off the competition so effectively. The number of subscriptions and copies flying off the shelves speaks for itself. So what is wrong with it? As you may guess from a number of my reviews here on dooyoo, I love the dvd format and take my collecting quite seriously, importing discs from the US, Australia, and Hong Kong if needs must to ensure that I get what I want. Understandably new releases, technical information, and the latest stories are a must for me. Hence DVD Review must be the perfect magazine. Unfortunately not. Read on to find out my reasons. PROBLEM ONE - THE INTERNET The biggest problem that any printed monthly has to face is the power of the internet. Alas, those 'exclusives', and 'You read it here first' are unlikely to be true if you are not looking at a computer screen. OK so it is going to take a little longer to get an article in print, but recently I read a 'news' article in DVD Review which I am quite sure I had seen online at least two or three months earlier. Another key issue facing the glossy is the volume of internet sites dedicated to the dvd format. From news sites to chatboards and reviews, there are so many websites to look at you'll be spoilt for choice. Sure there are plenty of awful pages, but a little trawling will provide some real gems. For example www.dvdfile.com is an excellent source of news. www.michaeldvd.com.au provides an incredible amount of inf
ormation about Australian releases, and www.dvdtimes.co.uk is jam packed full of reviews and just about anything dvd related. Have a browse when you have finished here, I'm sure some of those mentioned will find their way into your favourites somewhere. A final issue worthy of note in this section is the lack of international information available in the magazine. A dedicated US section is present, but to me seems little more than an afterthought each month, and again suffers from being somewhat out of date. Slotted in the back of the magazine, the Region 1 information provided merely offers me a taster, and leaves one searching alternative sources to get the full story. DVD is an international development, and the differing releases available across the world, be it by release date, cuts, or additional features means that many consumers are well informed and choose to purchase from overseas. For example, amongst my collection I have several Region 4 releases, and cannot remember any reference to our Antipodean friends and their shiny discs in DVD Review. PROBLEM TWO - SPOILERS How many times have you been waiting for that big release to screen at the cinema, or come out on rental, only for some thoughtless somebody to reveal the plot, ending, or a significant development in a film that ruins the viewing experience for you? Annoying isn't it? DVD Review has managed to make such spoilers a disappointingly regular occurence. Each review has a small box-out headed 'Stand-out Moment', complete with counter timer and a full description of events taking place. Perhaps a little consideration for those who haven't actually seen the movie may be required? And it doesn't stop there. Interviews and other articles are littered with snippets of information that the first time viewer may wish to avoid. DVD Review is far from unique in this crime, but in my opinion does seem to do rather a good job of giving the g
ame away on far too many movies. PROBLEM THREE - TECHNICAL INFORMATION Ok so maybe I am being a little picky here, but how many people believe every word of something that they read in print? Pick up a newspaper and read an article about which you are somewhat well versed, and you will be surprised at the number of holes that you can pick in the story, often to an almost worrying point. The dvd format is a technical minefield, with issues such as regional encoding, sound formats from Dolby Digital to DTS to Mono, outputs from digital and optical, to scart and s-video, to component and composite. Readers frequently write in with technical queries, and an alarming number of replies are (in my opinion) somewhat off beam. Perhaps I am expecting too much for every response to be 100% spot on, but replies are worded with such authority that those in the dark may accept every erroneous comment without question. PROBLEM FOUR - PRICE OK so it's only £4. Or £3.99 for any pedants out there. But that could be £4 towards your next dvd purchase, or half a Region 3 import from www.dddhouse.com in Hong Kong, which incidentally are around £8 a throw. Bet you wouldn't find that out from this mag. Don't get me wrong, I don't think that £4 is particularly steep, but there is rarely a cover disc to tempt you to part with your hard earned cash, and as previously discussed, the information on the internet is more detailed, available sooner, and altogether more accurate. With fewer adverts. SUMMARY I do occasionally read this magazine, on holiday for example, or anytime internet access is not an option. But I do tend to avoid the reviews of films that I haven't seen, and grimace a little at the technical content. It isn't a bad read, and many of it's shortcomings are inherent of the fact that it is a magazine. It does have its plus points, such as well compiled future release
date charts and the pick of films available in different movie categories. However, as internet access continues to grow and the information available becomes faster, and more widespread, I do feel that the glossies do need to come up with a unique selling point sooner rather than later. Who said print was dead?!
Back in my dark ages when I didn't have access to a PC and the wonder that is the World Wide Web (does anyone actually call it that anymore??) I had to resort to magazines to grasp knowledge and reviews of what interested me. My main interest now is mainly DVD and has been for the past 2 years almost. So before I was all netted up there was one magazine I would buy each month in order to quench my thirst for all things DVD related. This magazine was DVD Review. The magazine itself hasn't really changed much since it's launch in 1999. It still remains one of the most popular and well published magazines available. Each month it’s packed to the brim with both new Region 1 & 2 reviews although obviously the R2 reviews dominate, but at least they cover R1 too. There is always a good selection of news and a good proportion of interviews and articles that relate to specific DVD features or actor & directors. Also for a magazine I think it has some of the most useful adverts you’ll find. The vast majority are aimed at the DVD enthusiast; from new DVD releases for that month to online rental stores to home cinema equipment specialists. It’s definitely a great read if you’re a bit of a novice. Although if you really were a novice and wanted some more detailed advice I’d recommend Home Cinema Choice magazine. DVD Review does it’s job adequately for a monthly publication but herein lies the problem. Since I have become internet ready, so to speak, I can catch any news about forthcoming DVD on the day they break. Thanks to websites like www.dvdtimes.co.uk or www.dvdfile.com , so essentially that’s the news section of DVD Review wasted as I now know what has happened. Secondly those websites I mentioned offer fantastic reviews in there own right. And I’ll probably get to read them a lot sooner than if I was to buy DVD Review. So you see a good proportion of the magazines appeal is lost now I can find
this information much easier and quicker on the net. I really can’t justify spending £3.99 (which is a hell of a lot of money for a magazine) on a magazine that is technically out of date the minute it hits the shelves. I know this is an inherent problem faced by all magazines now that the internet is so popular but in my opinion DVD Review doesn’t offer anything new that can’t be found via the web. Another problem i have is the reviews themselves. They focus too much on what the actual plot/storyline of the films themselves when they should concentrate on picture/sound quality, bonus features etc. If i want a review of a film i can buy Empire or Total film. DVD Review should review the DVD and not take up loads of space telling the reader what the film is about. This is a problem which actually annoys me on some reviews when i'm looking for details of how the DVD fares and i get a huge diatribe about a film i'm already familiar with. Having said that it’s clear a lot of people still do buy this magazine as the quality and content has never dropped. In fact the run up to Christmas issues are some of the biggest issues going. I still look at the magazine from time to time but I don’t buy it on a regular basis now, partly as it dawned on me when throwing all my previous issues away that I could have bought a fair few DVDs with the money I spent on the magazines. I did like what Welshlad said in his OP. It does make a damn fine read on the toilet which at the present time cannot be achieved by my PC and all it’s internet goodness. But that’s all it’s good for, sorry, for £3.99 you could probably make your way through the whole magazine in less than a day. It’s certainly not enough to tide you over the 4 weeks until the next issue.
I have been reading DVD Review now for about 6 months.In this time my DVD collection has grown out of all proportion.I started thinking to myself I will just buy the occasional DVD.What's happened I started reading DVD review and the thought of "just an occasional DVD " has gone out of the window big time.I religiously buy it every month read it from cover to cover and guess what I go and buy a DVD that they have recommended.The thing is that if DVD review says that its worth getting then "its worth getting". So far I have not been dissapointed with their recommendations. The reviews are very well written with a summary of the story line with the pros and cons all clearly stated.Picture quality extras,sound,entertainment and value. All written clearly and concisely above all very informative. I have tried a few other magazines and I can say not many come even close. The price isn't bad either considering the cost of most magazines these days. If you are interested in DVD's and want to get the low down of new releases then I would say you would not be dissapointed reading "DVD Review" WELL WORTH IT !!!
DVD review is a brilliant magazine, it is good quality paper as in that it does not rip easily. It has reviews on new films, clasics, comodys and all other types and not like other magazines' it does not review the same film five magazines in a row. Allot of magazines come with AOL cd's and the same with netscape online, they also come with forms for britannia and scratch cards that you never win the car and only ever win the absolutely useless pens that have no ink in them, and what annoys me is that the magazine companys get tonnes of little notes worth allot of money. Well, DVD review only comes with one cd, a really good DVD disk that has lots of reviews on it and commentrys on them and it only has one piece of paper that is stapled into the book so that when you lift the magazine off the magazine rack in your local newsagents, that piece of paper does not fall out, AND, the single piece of paper usualy in DVD review is usualy a five pound token for "DVD world". And the other magazines that come with "free" disks usualycost arround four pounds ninty-nine when DVD review only costs... ...three ninty-nine thank-you for reading this review and remember..... .....doo it!!
Of all the DVD mags currently available, in my opinion DVD Review is the best of the bunch. It may not come with a free cover disc, but it makes up for this with great content, and does come with a free book every now and then i.e. Eyes Wide Shut, Fight Club, Gladiator. The layout of the mag itself is very well done, starting with the regular news round up from the world of DVD. Following this is a release schedule usually for the coming 6 months, which is very detailed, and i assume up to date. After a few features and the letters page, we get to the actual reviews. The reviews are always laid out very well and include details of the movie and all the extras (if any) on the disc. Region 2 and Region 1 reviews are included, and there is a full a to z listing of available movies also. Towards the back of the mag you will find a Hardware section, which covers Players, TV's, Amps, etc. This is followed with a buyers guide. Overall, for the few pounds that this mag costs, and compared to the other mags available, DVD Review is a very well put together DVD magazine, and i would recomend it to anyone who owns or is thinking about owning a DVD player.
After buying a DVD player recently, I have been steadily building my DVD collection, but have found that it is well worth knowing in advance what exactly you are getting when you buy a disc. So many Region 2 discs on sale at the moment are disappointing in comparison to their American R1 equivalent, so it can sometimes be a mistake to buy the readily available R2 disc. DVD Review is a useful resource when it comes to deciding which DVDs are worthy of my hard-earned cash. Published monthly, it provides comprehensive reviews of all the best R2 discs on sale, and also has a section devoted to Region 1 DVDs. The quality of this magazine is very good, and I am more impressed with this than any of the other DVD magazines I have bought. A large number of discs get the once-over each month, with ratings of the film itself, descriptions of the extras, technical details (film format, disc type etc.) and a suggestion for films of the same genre that are worth checking out. In addition to the DVD software reviews, there are a few hardware reviews each month. To be honest, these are of limited interest, since once you have your player, it is the discs that you are most likely to be spending your money on. Nonetheless this section is still nice to have, if only to keep up to date with the state of DVD hardware. One thing that must be mentioned is the quality of paper it is printed on. Where some magazines nowadays are trying to save costs by using cheaper quality paper (PC Plus for one), the glossy, thick pages used for DVD Review are especially impressive. Overall, I would recommend this as the best DVD magazine for those looking to build their collection. At £3.99, it is a tad expensive, but the quality of the magazine balances this out.
This shows the Power of DVD, can you ever remember a high quality magazine being devoted to VHS, I think not, and this magazine is high quality. Firsty the paper it is printed on is brilliant, its got this really nice feel about it, none of the that high gloss stuff here. Now for the inside, you get details of DVD news from around the world, like stories of the Star Wars Trilogy being remastered for DVD and so forth, you also get a chart to see what the best selling DVD's of the moment are, and what i find one of the most important parts of the magazine, is the region 2 release dates, this is good so you can plan what dvd's and so set money aside for the dvd's in the coming months. They will usually have a feature of one the high profile disks that were released that month, for example it could be Jurassic Park, or Sleepy Hollow, or news on new technology like the recordable dvd. You also gets the highlights of the ten best scenes, for example Shooting scenes, or action. And of course you get the region 2 reviews which are always well balanced giving you the good points and the bad. What is really good is the extensive final verdict, which gives details on the quality of picture, sound, entertainment, extras, value and the overall verdict. Giving you a view of what to expect before buying. You also get a directory of all the ratings of all the dvds reviewed. Not only do you get all the region two reviews but also the region 1, so if you are into buying from the states you are accounted for with this magazine. And if you are still to buy a player there is a hardware section that details not only players but also big screen televisions. So this magazine gives you everything you will want to know about the dvd market and is quality from the very first page to the very last, and is worth the £3.99 asking fee, especially when it comes with a free disc.
As one of the original DVD magazines, DVD review is by far and away the most popular DVD specific magazine on the market, and quite rightly so. Over-priced (in my opinion anyway) along with all its rivals, this great mag will set you back about £4, which is a lot each month, although some savings can be made if you opt for a subscription. Giving the best variety of the DVD Scene, you will find in each months edition the latest news, Loads of region 2 DVD reviews, Many region1 DVD reviews (one of the few to regularly give the latest region 1 releases a chance) and a short section on hardware. In addition to this they include differing special features, charts, hardware and software summaries and quite a few competitions – making this one magazine you will read cover to cover Packed with content, and expertly written, this magazine is the best DVD monthly publication there is, and having bought every issue to date, I can’t see anything else that comes close. This is simply the best regular magazine there is on paper, and while it can't touch the various DVD specific Web Sites for volume and content, if you want something to read on the toilet - this is the one to go for! :)
This mag is a little different than others I have read... It contains small hardware section....not too useful if you know little about DVD.. Reviews are split into region 1 and 2. I like this as I sometimes buy from the US (region 1) ( for my own use only !) as I can get discs earlier , cheaper and sometimes with different features on them.. There are some in-depth reviews of films e.g. 3 pages on sleepy hollow in issue 14...The rest are short reviews and sometimes do not comment enough on the actual film i.e. story. The films listing is for region 2...rated on a single score which does not separate the film from the DVD features. I see this as a problem as there are people who want to just see good films and the films content is often not covered in enough depth in this mag.