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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Days of Being Wild" or "A Fei jing juen" or "A Fei zheng zhuan" or A-Fei Tsing Chun" or "Ah Fei's Story" or "The True Story of Ah Fei")

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/wong.htm
Hong Kong 1991

In Wong Kar-wai's 1991 film Days of Being Wild, Yuddy (Leslie Cheung), a charming drifter captures the attention of store attendant Su Lizhen (Maggie Cheung) by asking her to look at his watch. When she sees that it says one minute before 3:00PM on April 16, 1960, he tells her that she will never forget the moment and will dream about him that night. The next time they meet, the moment becomes two, then one hour, then weeks and months but Yuddy is like the mythical bird with no legs that just flies and flies and never lands. Abandoned by his real mother and brought up by a wealthy alcoholic courtesan (Rebecca Pan), he does not know where he came from or where he is going. He treats women with little respect, discarding them when they no longer serve his purpose. When one lover asks him if he loves her, he tells her that during his life he will be friends with many, many women but won't know whom he truly loves until the end.


Days of Being Wild unfolds like a dream with color filters, unusual shadows, and the sights and sounds of Hong Kong's rainy nights and sweltering summers. Based on the director's memories from his childhood and admiration for the style of Argentinean novelist Manuel Puig (Heartbreak Tango), the film is a series of episodes involving six people who touch each other's lives. After his short-lived relationship with Su, Yuddy meets a cabaret dancer who calls herself Mimi (Carina Lau) but their relationship fares no better and she is left to suffer the consequences of their breakup. Meanwhile, Su meets Tide (Andy Lau), a gentle policeman whom she is able to confide until he suddenly leaves Hong Kong to become a sailor. Each character seeks a sense of identity and fulfillment. After Rebecca tells him of her plans to move to America with her boyfriend, she finally lets him know that who and where his real mother is. After Yuddy goes to the Philippines to try to find his mother, the lives of the main protagonists come together in a powerful conclusion.

Excerpt from Howard Schumann's comments on IMdb HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: 23 February 1991 (Berlin International Film Festival) 

Reviews    More Reviews    DVD Reviews

DVD Comparison:

 Tartan (The Wong Kar-Wai Collection) - Region 2 - PAL vs. Tartan - Region  2 - PAL vs. Kino - Region 0 - NTSC* vs. Scholar (Taiwan) - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Mega-Star - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Mega Star  - Region FREE Blu-ray vs. Criterion (2021 - 'World of Wong Kar Wai') - Region 'A' Blu-ray

*From a Wong Kar-wai Boxset including As Tears Go By, Days of Being Wild, Happy Together, Fallen Angels, and Chungking Express

Box Covers

 

 

  

Distribution

Tartan

Region 2 - PAL

Tartan

Region 2- PAL

Kino Video

Region 0  - NTSC

 

 

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Only sold presently as part of Criterion's Blu-ray package of World of Wong Kar Wai with As Tears Go By / Days of Being Wild / Chungking Express / Fallen Angels / Happy Together / In the Mood for Love / and 2046:

 

Bonus Captures:

Scholar/Shengchi/New Generation (LL) [A Taiwan-Based Distributor] 

Region 0  - NTSC

Mega-Star (Hong Kong)

Region 0  - NTSC

Mega Star - Region FREE Blu-ray

Criterion (2021)

Region 'A'  - Blu-ray

 
Distribution

Tartan

Region 2 - PAL

 

Tartan

Region 2- PAL

Kino Video

Region 0  - NTSC

 

Scholar/ Shengchi/ New Generation (LL)

Region 0  - NTSC

Mega-Star (Hong Kong)

Region 0  - NTSC

Mega Star - Region FREE Blu-ray

Criterion (2021)

Region 'A'  - Blu-ray

 

Runtime 1:31:10 (4% PAL speedup) 1:30:10 (4% PAL speedup) 1:33:54 1:34:03 1:33:54 1:34:49

1:35:12.456

Alternate Version: 1:34:17.777

Video

1.78:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 7.64 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

 

1.78:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.52 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

1.78:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 4.94  mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.50:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.79 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.78:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.83  mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

AVC Codec, Feature 21.8 Gig, 1080P, single-layered

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,011,683,748 bytes

Feature: 28,267,751,424 bytes

Alt-Version:  16,603,693,056 bytes

Video Bitrate: 35.48 Mbps / 22.19 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:

Tartan(boxset)

+

Tartan

+ Kino

  

Bitrate:

Scholar

+ Mega Star

 

  

 

Bitrate:

Criterion (2021) Alternate Version Blu-ray

 

 

Bitrate:

Criterion (2021) Blu-ray

 

 

Audio 2.0 Dolby Digital Cantonese DUB: 2.0 Dolby Digital Mono Mandarin Cantonese (Dolby Digital 2.0) Cantonese (Dolby Digital 5.1)

Cantonese (Dolby Digital 5.1)

Cantonese (DTS HD 7.1), Cantonese (Dolby Digital 5.1)

LPCM Audio Cantonese 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit

Alt version; Dolby Digital Audio Cantonese 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -31dB

Subtitles English, None English, None English, none English, Chinese, (both burned in) English, Japanese, Korean, Bahasa Malaysian, Bahasa Indonesian, Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese (traditional), Chinese (simplified) and none English, Japanese, Korean, Bahasa Malaysian, Bahasa Indonesian, Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese (traditional), Chinese (simplified) and none English, none

Alternate version:

Burned-in English and simplified Chinese

Features

 

Release Information:
Studio: Tartan

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.78:1

Edition Details:
• In the mood for Love trailer
• 2046 Trailer

DVD Release Date: November 13, 2006
Box

Chapters 16

Release Information:
Studio: Tartan

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.78:1

Edition Details:
• Trailers
• Booklet

DVD Release Date: January 24, 2005
Keep case

Chapters 16

Release Information:
Studio: Kino Video

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.78:1

Edition Details:

• Trailers for 4 Wong Kar-wai films
• Stills gallery (8 in click through)

• Filmographies of cast

Release: October 19th, 2004

Keep Case
Chapters: 12

Release Information:
Studio: Scholar /Shengchi/New Generation (LL) [A Taiwan-Based Distributor] 

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen - 1.50:1

Edition Details:
• None

Keep Case

Chapters 6

Release Information:
Studio: Mega-Star (Hong Kong)

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.78:1

Edition Details:

• "As Tears Go By" trailer
• Cast information

Keep Case
Chapters: 9

Release Information:
Studio: Tartan

Aspect Ratio: 1.78

AVC Codec, Feature 21.8 Gig, 1080P, single-layered

Edition Details:
• Days of Being Wild Trailer in HD (1:40)

• SD Trailer (3:09) interlaced 3:4

• Brotherhood Trailer in HD (1:40)

• Perhaps Love Trailer in HD (2:59)

DVD Release Date: 
September 2nd, 2008
Standard Blu-ray case

Chapters 20

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,011,683,748 bytes

Feature: 28,267,751,424 bytes

Alt-Version:  16,603,693,056 bytes

Video Bitrate: 35.48 Mbps / 22.19 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

Alternate Version (1:33:23)
Christopher Doyle 2005 (10:56)
Maggie Cheung Man Yuk (4:20)
Trailer (2:45)
PLUS: Deluxe packaging, including a perfect-bound, French-fold book featuring lavish photography, an essay by critic John Powers, a director’s note, and six collectible art prints

Blu-ray Release Date: March 23rd, 2021
Custom Blu-ray Case (see below)
Chapters: 17

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were obtained directly from the Blu-ray disc.

 

ADDITION: Criterion (2021) - Region 'A' - Blu-ray (January 2021): "Days of Being Wild" is the second oldest title in Criterion's upcoming World of Wong Kar Wai Blu-ray set. This has a "New 4K digital restoration". Criterion include an 'alternate' version that we will discuss below.

Let's start right off with a quote from an old interview with Christopher Doyle:
We began the interview looking over some DVDs of Chris Doyle's work with Wong Kar-wai. He picked up the Hong Kong import of Days of Being Wild, their first collaboration. "
You have to get the Japanese version," he remarked. "The color is wrong on this one. It's not green enough. It was all green, but then they kind of 'corrected' it when I wasn't there. They took away the green because they thought I didn't know what I was doing."

NOTE: (Thanks Jason):  Some comment I like to talk about is the "green haze" (very noticeable) on Mega Stars release of Days of Being Wild. If I remember correctly, the green haze is there on purpose even when I watch it in cinema when the movie is first released. It is also pointed out by WKW in some magazine (again if I remember correctly) that the green haze all over the movie is a style to make it a look of "old" so to simulate the 60's feelings.

Like In the Mood For Love, this new 4K restoration on Blu-ray shows a heavy green cast over the visuals. Bathed in jade-green hues (the clock capture below shows it most prominently) - it truly looks painterly and advances significantly in terms of detail and texture. Some viewers always want 'true' colors - but this is more akin to impressionist art conveying a feeling and the heavy green is accurate. Whether you like it or not, this is how, I feel, it was meant to look. It is on a dual-layered disc with a max'ed out bitrate.

NOTE: We have added 32 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

Regarding the 'Alternate' cut - it states: "This digital transfer of a 35 mm print of Days of Being Wild features an altered prologue sequence and different edits during the final scenes of the film." and amounts to a curiosity as the quality is poor - plenty of marks and damage in the 'alternate' opening and the transfer, itself is not premium - and has burned-in English and Chinese (simplified) subtitles and lossy audio.

The audio for the feature is via an uncompressed linear PCM mono track in the original Cantonese. The score is by Terry Chan with a Cantonese cover of Anita Mui performing Jungle Drums, Los Indios Tabajaras and some Xavier Cugat. Overall it is clear and more consistent - within the boundaries of the original production. Criterion add optional English subtitles (see samples below) on their Region 'A'-locked Blu-ray disc.

As well as the 'Alternate Version' there is an 11-minutes worth of edited footage from a 2005 appearance at the National Film Theatre in London where cinematographer Christopher Doyle discusses his craft and recalls his work on Days of Being Wild. There is also a short piece entitled 'Maggie Cheung Man Yuk' - illustrated excerpts from an August 1994 British Film Institute audio interview with Maggie Cheung features the actor discussing her work in Days of Being Wild. Lastly, is a trailer for the film. The World of Wong Kar Wai Blu-ray set has deluxe packaging, including a perfect-bound, French-fold book featuring lavish photography, an essay by critic John Powers, a director’s note, and six collectible art prints.

Themes of identity and longing permeate Wong's Days of Being Wild. The director is a master of tone - establishing it, setting it and maintaining it. Fringe people - restless - drifting inhabit the screen - seeking but never finding - interspersed with lush tropical forests and empty, lonely spaces. Another masterpiece and an essential addition to the World of Wong Kar Wai Blu-ray set. I LOVED seeing this again looking as intended - wow.  

Gary Tooze

***

ADDITION (Blu-ray - September 08'): As reviewers we seem to be in a constant battle to separate grain, dirt and noise. Days of Being Wild was shot with stock that doesn't support a dramatically detailed image. It will never look that way no matter how much we'd like. This new single-layered Blu-ray from Mega Star (film taking up 21.78 Gig) seems to reproduce the existing heavy grain 'feel' as well as one could expect. Fans who may be expecting brilliance of color and crystal clear sharpness will surely be disappointed - and never satisfied with the way this film will always look. A big positive is that it seems to maintain the 'green-ness' that cinematographer Chris Doyle was talking about at the very bottom of these comments. This Blu-ray still seems to carry some dirt over from the source but overall I thought the representation was better than I have seen so far (on my system). It's little things I noticed this time - like the luster of Maggie Cheung's hair and sweat on skin.

 

The audio (DTS HD?) is quite a bit superior to the SD-DVDs - if you go by my ear. It's full of life, very clean and at times spreads some buoyancy with the encapsulating music wonderfully presented. This positively enhanced my viewing. Like the image, the subtitles are, likewise, imperfect - at times the translation seems very awkward ("Do you bring girls home oftenly?" is still there with many other faux-pas) and they can move at a rapid clip for standard reading. The film though doesn't project an extensive use of dialogue (more imagery focused I think) and I wouldn't say this ruined my viewing but it is a definite flaw.

 

No extras save some trailers (two in HD). No advanced supplements at all.

 

It comes down to the fact that of Blu-ray having different missteps than the other releases. I rarely notice PAL speedup but I did with Maggie's voice and the music on both the Tartan releases. The Kino is brightened - The Scholar edition a total mess. I know there are other SD-DVDs out there of Days of Being Wild but those below are all we have compared.

 

I've come to the conclusion that there may never be a definitively 'perfect' digital representation of this film... although we can still hope. Mega Star's Blu-ray gave me my most enjoyable viewing of Wong Kar Wai's film to date - whether it is the most faithful to theatrical is anyone's guess. I didn't see it in the cinema but suspect that it may very well be. I hope the, clickable, screen caps below give you an indication of how it will look on your system. You may find, like I did, that the inherent grain can be very ingratiating - enough to forget the noise and dirt - ohh it's there - (or at least pretend it is grain as well). And the subtitle grammar errors? - well, I've seen it so many times - I don't require them as much. That's just me though.

Gary Tooze

***

ADDITION (Tartan - PAL - November '06): Tartan made promise of their word and have now re-released both "Days of Being Wild" and "As Tears Go By" in correct Cantonese language, part of their WKW box, also including "2046".

The new Tartan is an improvement overall. Sharper image and stronger details. There are however differences in one or two scenes, notice the "zoomed in" image in image #6. Still, with - finally - correct language, and a better image, Tartan is the best image available.

 - Henrik Sylow

ADDITION (Tartan - PAL - January '05): The Tartan DVD is a DVD5, film only taking up about 3.5 GB.

Tartan image is a different scan and source. It is cropped approx 2.5% right, and is vertically 3% lower than Kino. It is also squeezed approx 2% horizontally. The color scheme is green-ish, and as such more accurate.

While both Tartan and Kino are beautiful, frame #3 is slightly sharper in details (notice combteeth).

Where all other DVD releases of this film is in Cantonese, Tartan comes with a 2.0 Dolby Digital Mono Mandarin track. As this is a Hong Kong production, the language should be Cantonese. According to Tartan, they did request the Cantonese version, but received Mandarin.

But the real critical issue here is, that apart from the booklet, this is a DVD5 bare-boned release, and to ask 19,99 is really pushing the envelope to cash in on Wong and the January UK premiere of "2046".

Henrik Sylow

It is pretty hard to know what the exact color should be in this release. We have read what Cinematographer Christopher Doyle has said and interpreting that, yes the Tartan and the Mega-Star fall into that category of having a greenish-tinge. I look for some hard evidence that the brighter Mega-Star has excessive edge enhancement but can only find minute traces. It can appear that the Mega Star in slightly sharper than the Tartan, but checking the zoomed in captures at the end, I believe this may be a false assessment. I think the Tartan's colors are better and it is a sharper image. The Tartan also has far superior contrast than the Mega Star. It appears that the Mega Star is less-cropped (top edge) than the Tartan. Overall the Mega-Star has some grammar errors in the subtitles, but the big faux-pas of this entire comparisons is the DUB on the Tartan! That alone is enough to throw the Tartan out of contention. I prefer the Mega-Star's flaws to any of the other editions weaknesses.

Gary Tooze

****

ADDITION (Kino - Region 0 - NTSC - Sept -04) - The darker Kino edition show the other two to be side-cropped. The subtitles are improved (both font and grammar). It appears to be a toss-up regarding sharpness from the Mega-Star to the Kino, but I suspect because of some contrast boosting the Hong Kong edition that it may artificially appear sharper. The Kino does have more extras, but it is not stellar in that department. I don't think the Mega-Star's green haze is accurate, nor the boosted 5.1audio (but I don't have confirmation on that yet). The Kino is the best of the three and may remain the best this film will look on DVD although the Upcoming TF1 ( HERE ) might be the definitive.

***

Seems the Taiwanese Scholar image may have been taken from an Open Matte print - cropped by ? to 1.50. The true aspect ratio appears to be listed at 1.85 which would make the 1.78 anamorphic aspect ratio on the Mega-Star certainly more accurate. As well as having dual subtitles burned in the Scholar image is excessively red. The Mega-Star looks a little green in comparison. There is 'ghosting' to varying degrees in both issues, but the obvious choice of purchase is the Mega-Star DVD. The Scholar looks like some sort of weird Taiwanese bootleg and I would avoid it. 

 - Gary W. Tooze

NOTE (thanks Peter): According to Amazon France HERE TF1 has announced a Wong Kar-Wai boxset with these 5 movies due November 4th: Days of Being Wild, Ashes of Time, Chungking Express, Fallen Angels, and Happy Together. I don't know anything about the sources used by TF1, but I really hope that we will see some new excellent transfers with English subtitles.


DVD Menus


(Tartan (The Wong Kar-Wai Collection) - Region 2 - PAL)

 



(Tartan - Region 2- PAL LEFT vs. Kino - Region 0 - NTSC  RIGHT)


 

(Scholar - Region 0 - NTSC - LEFT vs. Mega-Star - Region 0 - NTSC - RIGHT)

 

 

 

Criterion- Region 'A' Blu-ray

 


CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

1) (Tartan (The Wong Kar-Wai Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Tartan - Region 2- PAL - SECOND

3) Kino - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) Scholar - Region 0 - NTSC - FOURTH

5) Mega-Star - Region 0 - NTSC - FIFTH

6) Mega Star - Region FREE Blu-ray SIXTH

7) Criterion (Alternate Version)- Region 'A' Blu-ray  SEVENTH

8) Criterion- Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Screen Captures

 

1) (Tartan (The Wong Kar-Wai Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Tartan - Region 2- PAL - SECOND

3) Kino - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) Scholar - Region 0 - NTSC - FOURTH

5) Mega-Star - Region 0 - NTSC - FIFTH

6) Mega Star - Region FREE Blu-ray SIXTH

7) Criterion (Alternate Version)- Region 'A' Blu-ray  SEVENTH

8) Criterion- Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

1) (Tartan (The Wong Kar-Wai Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Tartan - Region 2- PAL - SECOND

3) Kino - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) Scholar - Region 0 - NTSC - FOURTH

5) Mega-Star - Region 0 - NTSC - FIFTH

6) Mega Star - Region FREE Blu-ray SIXTH

7) Criterion - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) (Tartan (The Wong Kar-Wai Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Tartan - Region 2- PAL - SECOND

3) Kino - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) Scholar - Region 0 - NTSC - FOURTH

5) Mega-Star - Region 0 - NTSC - FIFTH

6) Mega Star - Region FREE Blu-ray SIXTH

7) Criterion - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) (Tartan (The Wong Kar-Wai Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Tartan - Region 2- PAL - SECOND

3) Kino - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) Scholar - Region 0 - NTSC - FOURTH

5) Mega-Star - Region 0 - NTSC - FIFTH

6) Mega Star - Region FREE Blu-ray SIXTH

7) Criterion - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) (Tartan (The Wong Kar-Wai Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Tartan - Region 2- PAL - SECOND

3) Kino - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) Scholar - Region 0 - NTSC - FOURTH

5) Mega-Star - Region 0 - NTSC - FIFTH

6) Mega Star - Region FREE Blu-ray SIXTH

7) Criterion - Region 'A' Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


More full resolution (1920 X 1080) 2021 Criterion Blu-ray Captures for DVDBeaver Patreon Supporters HERE


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Thinking of buying from YesAsia? CLICK HERE and use THIS UPDATED BEAVER PAGE to source their very best...

 

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Only sold presently as part of Criterion's Blu-ray package of World of Wong Kar Wai with As Tears Go By / Days of Being Wild / Chungking Express / Fallen Angels / Happy Together / In the Mood for Love / and 2046:

 

Bonus Captures:

Scholar/Shengchi/New Generation (LL) [A Taiwan-Based Distributor] 

Region 0  - NTSC

Mega-Star (Hong Kong)

Region 0  - NTSC

Mega Star - Region FREE Blu-ray

Criterion (2021)

Region 'A'  - Blu-ray

 

 




 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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