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Jean De Florette / Manon of the Spring (Double Feature)
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Disc 1 Side B: **Widescreen Feature Film - Manon of the Spring
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I wrote the original after skipping around the discs and being extremely disappointed by what I saw. Since then, I've sat down and watched both movies on this disc and my opinion has changed somewhat. The problem was my expectations, not the actual product.
On the whole, these films DO look fantastic when compared to every other DVD release available (MGM and the R2 Pathe discs from France). However, they don't look nearly as good as I believe possible. I think this film deserves the royal treatment, an all new, high definition transfer by seriously skilled people.
Unfortunately, while the resolution is good, it is anamorphic, and appears to be a straight NTSC transfer (and not a PAL-to-NTSC conversion as I previously thought), there is just something not right. The colors are way too hot when compared to the actual film, and there just seems to be a layer of fuzz or blur over the whole thing that is not present on the big screen.
I give it 5 stars because the films are fantastic. The two greatest foreign films I've ever seen. I've watched them each about 15 times, and never grow tired of them. I pretty much learned French watching these movies.
However, this DVD seriously lacks. This movie is in dire need of a new and improved subtitle translation. While the subtitles make sense on the whole, I've studied the French script, and there is a great deal missing in the translation.
There are no special features.Read more ›
Now as for the packaging, this new release is bare bones. Technically the picture, and sound are improved over previous releases in my opinion. It's presented in widescreen though not in an HD format. Refer to the other reviews for the technical mumbo-jumbo, but it looked great to me. The two subtitling choices are English and Spanish. Jean de Florette is on one side of the disc and the sequel on the other. That's it. There's nothing else. They could certainly have dome more here, but for the price, who's complaining?
Highly recommended!!!!! (one exclamation point for each star)
Unfortunately they still aren't a home run. The picture in general consistently looks a little too 'hot' - contrast is jacked up which blows out the details in the highlights in many shots- also there is an at times over bearing yellow tint to the image in the countryside exteriors. Some EE and ringing are also visible in a few shots. Fine detail on the other hand is much improved over the PAL disc and artifacts related to compression are a monumental improvment over the first MGM release.
These should have been color timed a bit cooler- but on the whole, this new release easily represents the most watchable versions of these two classics yet (at least, not counting the widescreen Image laserdisc set that is now long out of print).
Its a shame that this release is so close, and yet still misses the mark. At least this one will suffice for a few years until the film are (hopefully) properly presented on one or both of the High Def formats.
The films themselves get 5 stars easy- the new disc gets 3.5 for PQ and AQ.
"Jean" and "Manon" form one continuous story with a 10-year time gap. You absolutely must see them both, and in the correct order. On no account should you see "Manon" before seeing "Jean" first. Ideally, the films should be paced over two nights, but at the end of "Jean" you might be unable to contain your burning curiosity about what happens in the sequel, "Manon", so may choose to see both films back-to-back in a single four-hour sitting.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I had recorded these from tv many years ago, so I knew I had to upgrade eventually. If you like Yves Montand and Gérard Depardieu, you won't be disappointed. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Ghod Dhammit
|Topic||From this Discussion|
|Double-sided DVD, Jukebox's anathema||
I have a fairly old dvd player and have been unable to play and see the 2nd side--I've contacted the seller, but not heard back yet. I've been anxiously waiting to see Manon and the above does help some. I will try and play side 2 on my pc and see what happens. Otherwise I guess I'll have to... Read More
Mar 13, 2009 by Elizabeth Cole | See all 2 posts
Yes, they're anamorphic. They look really nice. I was stunned and pleased at how the colors of provence really jump out. It's a pleasue to watch these films now. I'm not sure if this is a totally new transfer but it is really beautiful. There does not appear to be pal-transferred artifacting... Read More
Jul 28, 2007 by ericnj | See all 3 posts
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|Subtitles?||Be the first to reply|
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