Jacques Rivette on DVD and BD

Discuss internationally-released DVDs and Blu-rays or other international DVD and Blu-ray-related topics.
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Barmy
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#76 Post by Barmy » Wed Jan 09, 2008 1:16 pm

The Denis doc is fairly tedious and will be useless unless you speak the relevant language(s), as it's all chatter.

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justeleblanc
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#77 Post by justeleblanc » Wed Jan 09, 2008 1:42 pm

Once this comes out, I'm really interested in seeing the quality of Merry Go Round. Does someone plan on buying this and posting screencaps here?

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Oedipax
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#78 Post by Oedipax » Wed Jan 09, 2008 5:55 pm

Once this comes out, I'm really interested in seeing the quality of Merry Go Round.
If you're as big a fan of Denis and Daney as I am (and to a lesser extent Rivette), it's certainly not tedious - though it does go on for a long while, and the second "night" section is less engaging than the first. And yeah, subtitles are a must (if you don't speak the language).

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bearcuborg
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#79 Post by bearcuborg » Wed Jan 09, 2008 9:05 pm

Barmy wrote:The Denis doc is fairly tedious and will be useless unless you speak the relevant language(s), as it's all chatter.
It was my first introduction to Rivette and I thought there was a rich intimacy in the Denis film that I have never seen in another film about a filmmaker. I have to say The Night Watchman is essential.

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#80 Post by evillights » Thu Jan 10, 2008 4:32 am

bearcuborg wrote:
Barmy wrote:The Denis doc is fairly tedious and will be useless unless you speak the relevant language(s), as it's all chatter.
It was my first introduction to Rivette and I thought there was a rich intimacy in the Denis film that I have never seen in another film about a filmmaker. I have to say The Night Watchman is essential.
Don't listen to these petits cons. The Denis documentary, made for the 'Cinéastes de notre temps' series and titled 'Jacques Rivette, le veilleur' (Jacques Rivette: The Watchman'), and dating from 1990, is the best installment of all time in the 'Cinéastes de notre temps' enterprise, next to Costa's shorter edit of 'Où gît votre sourire enfoui?' (Where Does Your Smile Lie Buried?, -- contrary to other ridiculous translations that have it as: "WHERE LIES YOUR HIDDEN SMILE") albeit slighty less-good than the full feature-length version (to say nothing of '6 bagatelas'). The Denis film runs 2h 5m in PAL length, every second is powerful and cogent, not to mention occasionallu veru moving. It puts all other "film-director interview films" to shame.

P.S. - Truth be told, I recently acquired a copy of Rafi Pitts's 2005 entry in the series, 'Abel Ferrara: Not Guilty', which I haven't watched yet, but which can only be excellent...

craig.

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david hare
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#81 Post by david hare » Thu Jan 10, 2008 5:00 am

Craig, didn't Claire begin film life as a "follower" of Demy? Pre Chocolat that is.

Stefan Andersson
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#82 Post by Stefan Andersson » Wed Jan 23, 2008 7:21 am

Specs for Rivette box up at Kinowelt. No English subs, German only. Re: MERRY-GO-ROUND it seems it has dialogue in both English and French.

I Googled on VA SAVOIR+ and found a pdf file from a Centre Pompidou, Paris, Rivette retrospective. It listed UNE AVENTURE DE NINON, his short film from LUMIERE & CO, at 2 minutes 10 seconds. Might it be a "director´s cut" of the short in the movie, weren´t they supposed to be only 52 secs each?

MERRY-GO-ROUND is advertised at VideoCiak, an Italian standalone dvd with Italian HOH subs.

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#83 Post by Michael Kerpan » Wed Jan 23, 2008 9:44 am

Stefan Andersson wrote:Specs for Rivette box up at Kinowelt. No English subs, German only. Re: MERRY-GO-ROUND it seems it has dialogue in both English and French.
Yes -- a very multi-lingual film.
I Googled on VA SAVOIR+ and found a pdf file from a Centre Pompidou, Paris, Rivette retrospective. It listed UNE AVENTURE DE NINON, his short film from LUMIERE & CO, at 2 minutes 10 seconds. Might it be a "director´s cut" of the short in the movie, weren´t they supposed to be only 52 secs each?.
The Rivette film also has a little mini-interview afterwards -- which is probably what adds the extra time (this was included in the Arte box set).

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#84 Post by Stefan Andersson » Fri Jan 25, 2008 11:52 am

I got an e-mail answer from Kinowelt deeply regretting that they could not find materials for VA SAVOIR+ despite their efforts to do so. Seems that one will be hard to get on dvd.

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justeleblanc
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#85 Post by justeleblanc » Fri Jan 25, 2008 1:07 pm

I got a similar response from my friend at Sony, who while not a fan of Rivette, was interested in the idea of a longer cut. After doing some research, he claimed that Va Savoir+ wasn't even an official director's cut, just an alternate cut Rivette put together for a few screenings, mostly for himself and the other actors.

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Tommaso
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3 Films by Jacques Rivette in February

#86 Post by Tommaso » Sun Feb 03, 2008 7:43 am

Cover designs for 3 Films by Jacques Rivette are up at DVD Times . Nice!

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MichaelB
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#87 Post by MichaelB » Sun Feb 03, 2008 1:53 pm

Tommaso wrote:Cover designs are up at DVD Times . Nice!
I've already posted these details in the other Rivette thread, but just to recap:

All three Bluebell releases are anamorphic, and with optional subtitles, but have no extras.

I can't confirm whether they're DVD-9s (I only have single-layer check discs), but given that one of the films approaches three hours I'd be very surprised if they tried to cram it onto a DVD-5.

Also, Love on the Ground is definitely the longer cut.

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martin
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#88 Post by martin » Fri Feb 08, 2008 3:48 am

There are more details about the German 4-disc set at the Arthaus page.

The listed playing times are:
Celine = 185
Duelle = 115
Merry = 153
Savoir = 147

This seems correct after PAL speedup, and it fits the total approximate time of 603 min.

It seems like they've skipped the Denis documentary? I don't know what "Szenen aus dem parallelen Leben: Gespräch mit Jacques Rivette (ca. 45 Min.)" is? (Maybe an excerpt from the Claire Denis documentary?)

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domino harvey
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#89 Post by domino harvey » Fri Feb 08, 2008 2:15 pm

Ruh-roh: Amazon.co.uk is listing Gang of Four's running time as 140 mins, not 160

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MichaelB
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#90 Post by MichaelB » Fri Feb 08, 2008 7:30 pm

domino harvey wrote:Ruh-roh: Amazon.co.uk is listing Gang of Four's running time as 140 mins, not 160
Actually, it's 155. And to kill off further speculation, these are the exact running times of the Bluebell releases (sourced from the actual discs, not press releases);

Love on the Ground - 2h48m49s
Gang of Four - 2h35m09s
Wuthering Heights - 2h06m18s

These are all native PAL transfers, so they equate to theatrical running times of 175m55s, 161m36s and 131m33s.

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domino harvey
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#91 Post by domino harvey » Fri Feb 08, 2008 7:35 pm

Thank you very much for relieving my anxieties over these releases, they're obviously quite anticipated! =D>

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pro-bassoonist
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#92 Post by pro-bassoonist » Sat Feb 09, 2008 5:56 am

Now we need to hear how good the actual prints are since, as you also noted, the first batch of titles Blubel produced was horrendous.

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MichaelB
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#93 Post by MichaelB » Sat Feb 09, 2008 6:15 am

pro-bassoonist wrote:Now we need to hear how good the actual prints are since, as you also noted, the first batch of titles Blubel produced was horrendous.
I can't give definitive descriptions, since I've only got single-layer DVD-R reductions and I assume the final production versions will be dual-layer (with two of the films approaching three hours, it would be pretty horrific if they weren't), but they're all anamorphic native PAL transfers with optional subtitles, sourced from prints that are as clean as is reasonable to expect with 20-year-old films.

My guess is that they're direct ports from the French discs, with added subtitles - there's no real reason why they wouldn't be. And Wuthering Heights/Hurlevent looked fine even in the single-layer version - I'm watching the other two in full this weekend.

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pro-bassoonist
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#94 Post by pro-bassoonist » Sat Feb 09, 2008 4:10 pm

MichaelB wrote:My guess is that they're direct ports from the French discs, with added subtitles - there's no real reason why they wouldn't be. And Wuthering Heights/Hurlevent looked fine even in the single-layer version - I'm watching the other two in full this weekend.
Thank Michael, this is reassuring.

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MichaelB
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#95 Post by MichaelB » Mon Feb 11, 2008 9:49 am

I watched Love on the Ground last night, and the transfer is at least acceptable if not exactly state-of-the-art.

The good points are that the source print is very clean indeed, with hardly any onscreen blemishes, the colours ring true and the subtitles are both thorough and optional.

The less good points are that the picture seemed on the darkish side (though this is the first time I've seen the film, so don't have anything to compare it to), with noticeable artefacting in the nocturnal scenes such as the one where Jane Birkin wanders around the mansion at night and encounters the crab. However, this may well be a by-product of reducing the file size to fit on a single-layer checkdisc, so there's a possibility that problem might be ironed out (or at least substantially reduced) in the final version.

But all in all, it's a tentative thumbs up - and the film was an absolute revelation. I suspect fans of Celine and Julie in particular will lap it up. I clearly watched a radically different film from the one that these guys reviewed - though this may be literally true, as they only saw the shorter cut. I'd be quite curious to see it myself, as I wouldn't know where to start if I had to cut an hour out of what I watched: every scene seemed to me to be an indelible part of the overall concept.

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Michael Kerpan
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#96 Post by Michael Kerpan » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:16 am

MichaelB wrote:But all in all, it's a tentative thumbs up - and the film was an absolute revelation. I suspect fans of Celine and Julie in particular will lap it up. I clearly watched a radically different film from the one that these guys reviewed - though this may be literally true, as they only saw the shorter cut. I'd be quite curious to see it myself, as I wouldn't know where to start if I had to cut an hour out of what I watched: every scene seemed to me to be an indelible part of the overall concept.
I agree with you on the film. Keith must have been in a really crummy mood when he saw the film.

While this should appeal to C&J fans -- I think it really stands on its own. The first segment totally cracked me up -- one of Rivette's funniest scenes ever (second only, perhaps, to the drunken, high-altitude duel in "Va savoir".

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Tommaso
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#97 Post by Tommaso » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:21 am

Michael, these reviews of the film you linked to seem to border on the ridiculous. I have seen the long cut of the film as well on the French arte disc, and while I find it much better paced, the magic of the film also comes out in the shorter cut (though I can't remember now what exactly is missing in the shorter version). The film is a very thorough and illuminating meditation on the relationship of theatre/film, illusion and life, and while I find "La belle noiseuse" unsurpassed here, "L'amour par terre" doesn't fall that far behind. And it has more of that typical Rivette weirdness that indeed reminds me of "Celine and Julie" here, too, though in that respect "Noroit" must be the highpoint.

The film indeed looks rather dark on the arte disc as well, but that is alto true for the TV broadcasts I've seen of the short version, so I would assume that this is the way Rivette wanted it to be, and to me it looks fine.
I hope that there will be reviews of the Bluebell discs soon, and hopefully based on the final product. I hope you're right that the artefacting will be gone once it's on a DVD-9. The arte disc, in any case, looks wonderful.

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#98 Post by MichaelB » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:24 am

Tommaso wrote:I hope that there will be reviews of the Bluebell discs soon, and hopefully based on the final product. I hope you're right that the artefacting will be gone once it's on a DVD-9. The arte disc, in any case, looks wonderful.
I think there's a very strong probability that this is the Arte disc, only with English subtitles. After all, why would Bluebell need to create a new master when a perfectly good one already existed?

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Tommaso
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#99 Post by Tommaso » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:33 am

MichaelB wrote:I think there's a very strong probability that this is the Arte disc, only with English subtitles. After all, why would Bluebell need to create a new master when a perfectly good one already existed?
Yes, but they'd have to do a new encoding to disc if they added subtitles, or is that different? It's not as if the disc would be exactly the same as the original as with the various European incarnations of Ruscico discs, with the same menus, subs, extras etc. For instance, I have read that the AE disc of "Marie et Julien" was much weaker than the French arte version, though in that case it may have to do with the fact that AE put some of the extras on arte's second disc on their one-discer, and thus probably reduced bitrate. They also seem to have brightened the image, which with "Love on the Ground" doesn't seem to be the case.

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MichaelB
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#100 Post by MichaelB » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:48 am

Tommaso wrote:Yes, but they'd have to do a new encoding to disc if they added subtitles, or is that different?
Not necessarily - I recently extracted a copy of Borowczyk's Rosalie from the Arte disc of La Bête, added my own subtitle translation in DVD Studio Pro and burned the end result to a DVD-R. This was visually identical to the original since there was no change to the original MPEG-2 encode - the subtitles exist as a separate file that's overlaid on top during playback.

But it depends on whether Bluebell was working from an existing MPEG-2 encode or whether they went back to the Digibeta source. The latter would give them more leeway, but it would also mean that they could re-encode it with a lower bitrate, producing an inferior image from the same materials. But without actually being privy to the production process, all this is guesswork - the only way you could tell would be to get both DVDs, extract the main video files and compare them to see if they're identically sized.
Last edited by MichaelB on Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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