As I’ve alluded to in my post Finding Out of Print Titles, trash cinema has a niche audience, so DVDs of many movies have trouble staying in print, and therefore can be hard to find. For that reason, often times the only DVD available might have been manufactured for another region than the one you live in.
Let me explain. Many countries manufacture videos and DVD using the PAL (Phase Alternating Line) code, which is unreadable by NTSC (National Television System Committee) code machines. You can find a list of the countries that use PAL at http://www.high-techproductions.com/pal.htm. A list of the countries that use NTSC can be found at http://www.high-techproductions.com/ntsc.htm. There’s actually a third format, SECAM, but fortunately, it’s only used in Africa and the former USSR, so we don’t need to be concerned about that.
But our troubles don’t end there. There are also region codes to contend with. DVDs manufactured with region code 1 can normally only be played on region code 1 DVD players. A list of the region codes with corresponding countries can be found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DVD_region_code.
So, basically, if you’re really serious about sampling the best of the world-wide smorgasbord of trash cinema, you’re going to need a multi-region PAL/NSTC DVD Player. I’ve been hunting for one myself, and this is the best reviewed one on Amazon.com, the PHILIPS DVP3140 - ALL REGION CODEFREE MULTI SYSTEM DVD PLAYER. (For more information, hold your mouse over the product image.)
I can’t wait to get mine. According to the reviews on Amazon, you can play a Region 1 DVD, take it out, and put in a Region 2 DVD and the machine will play it perfectly! Pretty slick, if you ask me.