Being a bit of a Final Fantasy VII fanboy, I bought 'Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children' when it was released on DVD in the UK (DVD region 2). Sadly, Sony totally screwed up the production of this DVD and I cannot recommend you buy it.

Universal Product Code: 5035822403130

Copy protection

The disc is unplayable in my computer (even in my Sony-made DVD drive). It appears to be using some kind of copy protection that relies on writing corrupted sectors to the disc. Some brief research suggests that the disc may suffer from ARccOS.

Fortunately the DRM can be partially circumvented by using GNU ddrescue. This basically makes an image of the disc, with any corrupted/unreadable sectors replaced by zeroes. I was able to play the resulting image in totem with the xine backend, but mplayer still reported corrupted sectors. It was not possible to reliably seek throughout the movie with either player.

Why should I have to jump through this hoop to get access to the content that I paid for?

Image quality

Given that Advent Children is a digitally animated movie, I was expected the picture quality to be nothing short of perfect. To put it moderately, the DVD failed to live up to this expectation.

The video data is heavily compressed; compression artifacts are readily apparent all over the picture.

Each frame of the video appears to contain multiple fields, blended together. This looks hideous, and cannot really be fixed by deinterlacing.

The following is a still frame taken from the opening sequence (click the image to view the full frame):


The same frame, with deinterlacing (totem with xine backend):


The same frame from an unauthorised copy downloaded from the Internet, available well before the DVD was released in the UK:


And the same frame from a copy of the American(?) DVD release, presumably also available well before the DVD was released in the UK. It is progressively encoded; there is nary an interlacing artifact to be seen.


There's no reason to pay money for this dreadful release when you can download it for free instead.

CategoryDVDQuality AdventChildren (last edited 2008-07-05 17:41:48 by sam)

© Sam Morris <>.
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