Sunday, 15 September 2013

The MDNA Tour Debacle

Afternoon all, I watched the MDNA Tour bluray in full last night. All I am left wondering is just what went wrong in the production of this bluray and DVD.

For a start, there is a lot of grain. Unacceptable amounts for a bluray really. The start of I Don't Give A Fuck looked awful. Up until Express Yourself grainy shots were featuring in more or less every song After that I felt they subsided a lot but they still cropped up every so often. However - they still seemed to only effect a relatively small portion of shots, which leads me to my next criticism: the camera-work is chaotic.

The multi-angle shots are in utter overkill here. This bluray must have a record for that. It's certainly the worst I've ever seen. To be fair - this show would be a nightmare to film. There's a massive stage, and trying to cover the dancers, the screens, Madonna (of course) and even the crowd is a massive undertaking. The problem here for me is they've tried too hard. As a consequence it feels very disorienting to watch - even during the choreography segments the camera will dart between dancers, crowd and wideshots of the stage. I personally feel that crowd shots took up far too much time, and they were always grainy. Not only that but it's been edited far too much. There's also a lot of Instagram style filters with minimal contrast. I'm not sure if that was the intention, but it looks over-edited and frankly nasty. here's plenty of super-imposed shots for good measure too. There's also far too many slow motion shots for me. It spoils what are otherwise spectacular dance moves. I found it difficult to immerse myself in what was going on. And that's before we get to the sound.

The sound is also poor on this. As I've said before - I'm no audiophile. Having said that this was just flat. When songs like I'm Addicted and Like A Prayer pack no punch whatsoever something has gone wrong. It's not Madonna's performance either. The dance instrumental in Gang Bang actually verged on inaudible. The 5.1 sound is also defective: if you have a home cinema system then this won't work. How can that even happen? I haven't heard the CD yet, but I've heard mixed reviews on that too.

Also the menu simply doesn't work. The only reason I was able to watch it was because of pressing play on the menu. However, I couldn't select the play concert option on the DVD the way you normally can. As for being able to access chapter options or even the extras - forget it. No cursor appears. Also - the menu itself had very poor design. I wear glasses and my bed is situated close enough to my TV and it was very hard to see. If I were at the top of my bed it wouldn't have been readable whatsoever.

It's a real shame this has happened, because the tour itself looked excellent. However this live representation doesn't do it justice whatsoever. Amazon are currently investigating it, and based on what I've read it appears the manufacturers have admitted there have been production issues. For now - I cannot recommend this whatsoever. A dismal disappointment. I'll have more as this situation unfolds.

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