directed by Martin Scorsese
USA 1980

In one of the most famous fights in boxing history, "The St. Valentine's Day Massacre", their sixth fight, Sugar Ray Robinson beat Jake la Motta to a bloody pulp, landing 56 unanswered punches in the 13th round, before the referee stopped the fight and announced Robinson the new middleweight champion of the world. But the fight was fixed and notes upon the dark chapter in boxing history, when the mafia controlled who fought who and who would win. La Motta, a 3-1 favourite was ordered to throw the fight, and later before a congressional hearing would admit so, naming names. And while la Motta never regained the title, one thing has remained with him throughout his life. The fact, that Robinson never knocked him out, "You never got me down."

One of the greatest films ever made, Scorseses "Raging Bull" tells the story of the rise and fall of Jake la Motta. Completely uncompromising and emotionally painful to watch, Scorsese was fascinated by the self-destructive nature of la Motta and depicts him as a fighter, forced to sell his soul in order to become a champion and his fall as a human being, then losing everything, even his own humanity, clinging to the one fact, that he never "lost" a fight, brilliantly exemplified thru the final scene, where la Motta sits in front of a mirror, quoting Shakespeare and Brando from "On the Waterfront", "I could have been a contender."

Everything in "Raging Bull" notes upon personal best, especially Robert de Niro, who went thru a personal hell, transforming himself, first to a buff middleweight boxer, then gaining 90 lbs to portrait the fallen la Motta.

A masterpiece, "Raging Bull" is perhaps the only American film of recent years, who alongside "The Godfather" deserves being called one of the greatest films ever made. It is a triumph of filmmaking.
out of

Henrik Sylow

Posters

Theatrical Release: November 14, 1980

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DVD Comparison:

MGM - Region FREE Blu-ray vs. MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC vs. MGM (1.85:1) - Region 1 - NTSC vs. MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL

Big thanks to Enrique B Chamorro and Henrik Sylow for all the DVD Screen Caps!

1) MGM Region FREE Blu-ray - LEFT

2) MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - SECOND

3) MGM (original) - Region 1 - NTSC - THIRD

4) MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT

 

DVD Box Covers

   

   

   

   

NOTE: The SE (2 disc) edition of Raging Bull is available in the The Martin Scorsese Film Collection which also includes New York, New York, The Last Waltz and Boxcar Bertha. Reviewed HERE

CLICK to order from:

             

Distribution

MGM

Region FREE Blu-ray

MGM (SE)

Region 1 - NTSC

MGM
Region 1 - NTSC
MGM
Region 2 - PAL
Runtime 2:09:03.819 2:08:52 129 min 123 min (4% PAL speedup)
Video

Disc Size: 44,882,431,807 bytes

Feature Size: 36,505,282,560 bytes

Total Bitrate: 37.71 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC

1.81:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 7.75 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.16 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.52 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

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

Bitrate:

 

MGM (Blu-ray)

 

Bitrate:

MGM (SE)

Bitrate:

 

MGM (1.85:1)

 

Bitrate:

 

MGM (20th Anv.)

 

Audio DTS-HD Master Audio English 3829 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3829 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 24-bit)
DUBs: DTS Audio French 768 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit
Dolby Digital Audio Portuguese 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Spanish 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Turkish 448 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 448 kbps
Commentaries: Dolby Digital Audio English 224 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 224 kbps / Dolby Surround
Dolby Digital Audio English 224 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 224 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio English 224 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 224 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio English 224 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 224 kbps
English (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), DUBS: French (Dolby Digital 1.0), Spanish (Dolby Digital 1.0)

English 2.0, French, Spanish 1.0

English 2.0, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch 1.0

Subtitles English, Chinese, French, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish, Thai, none English, French, Spanish, none English, French, Spanish, none English, French, Spanish, German, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Italian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Swedish, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: MGM
(Blu-ray)

 

Disc Size: 44,882,431,807 bytes

Feature Size: 36,505,282,560 bytes

Total Bitrate: 37.71 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC

 

Edition Details:
• Commentary by director Martin Scorsese and editor Thelma Schoonmaker
• Commentary by director of photography Michael Chapman, producer Irwin Winkler, music producer Robbie Robertson, producer Robert Chartoff, actress Theresa Saldana, actor John Turturro, and supervising sound effects editor Frank Warner
• Commentary by writer Mardik Martin, writer Paul Schrader, boxer-author Jake LaMotta, and LaMotta's nephew Jason Lustig
• "Raging Bull: Before the Fight": documentary on the writing, casting, and preproduction of the film (26:00)
• "Raging Bull: Inside the Ring": in-depth look at the choreography and the shooting of the fight scenes (14:45)
• "Raging Bull: Outside the Ring": Behind-the-scenes stories (27:24)
• "Raging Bull: After the Fight": featurette on the sound design, music, and impact of the film (15:23)
• "The Bronx Bull": making-of documentary (27:53)
• "De Niro vs. LaMotta": shot-by-shot comparison of De Niro and LaMotta in the ring (3:46)
• Newsreel footage of the real LaMotta (LaMotta Defends Title) (1:00)
• Original theatrical trailer (2:10)

Blu-ray Release Date: Feb 10th, 2009
Standard
Blu-ray Case

Chapters 36

Release Information:
Studio: MGM
(2 Disc SE)

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterboxed - 1.81:1

Edition Details:
• Commentary by director Martin Scorsese and editor Thelma Schoonmaker
• Commentary by director of photography Michael Chapman, producer Irwin Winkler, music producer Robbie Robertson, producer Robert Chartoff, actress Theresa Saldana, actor John Turturro, and supervising sound effects editor Frank Warner
• Commentary by writer Mardik Martin, writer Paul Schrader, boxer-author Jake LaMotta, and LaMotta's nephew Jason Lustig
• "Raging Bull: Before the Fight": documentary on the writing, casting, and preproduction of the film
• "Raging Bull: Inside the Ring": in-depth look at the choreography and the shooting of the fight scenes
• "Raging Bull: Outside the Ring": Behind-the-scenes stories
• "Raging Bull: After the Fight": featurette on the sound design, music, and impact of the film
• "The Bronx Bull": making-of documentary
• "De Niro vs. LaMotta": shot-by-shot comparison of De Niro and LaMotta in the ring
• Newsreel footage of the real LaMotta
• Original theatrical trailer

DVD Release Date: Feb 8th, 2005
Keepcase

Chapters 35

Release Information:
Studio: MGM

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterboxed - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Static Menus
• Theatrical Trailer 2:02
• Accurate English Subtitles
• 8 page booklet

DVD Release Date: March 25th, 1997
Keepcase

Chapters 30

Release Information:
Studio: MGM

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterboxed - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Static Menus
• Theatrical Trailer 2:04
• Summarized English Subtitles
• Also on DVD trailers 4:33
• On Disc 2; Jake's Jokes 5:51
• The Bronx Bull Interviews 26:44
• Easter Egg 1 - 6 recent photos of LaMotta
• Easter Egg 2 - Movietone clip from Jake LaMotta vs. Laurent Dauthuille Sept. 1950 fight 0:55
• 16 page booklet
• 3 B&W postcards

 

DVD Release Date: 11/27/02
Fold out digipac

Chapters 30

 

Comments

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

ADDITION: Blu-ray February 09': A film like Raging Bull, which is cinematographically attempting to capture a certain period with utilizing a heavier stock and presenting the film in black and white (for the most of the onscreen activity) produces a more subtle visual mprovement than many are used to seeing in high-definition. Even the speckles - that continue to exist - augment the overall style of the film benefiting the aura. So while the differences may not seem immense - the larger the system viewing it the more prominent these will become. Contrast is superior (see matts, towels, shirts) and much more of the intended grain is noticeable. Detail also improves as the image tightens-up in the higher resolution. The bitrate appears to be about 5 times the last SE DVD and technically this is dual-layered with the Blu-ray feature taking up about 36.5 Gig. I toggled back and forth and even on my smaller system the disparity was clearly evident. The biggest differences are the contrast and grain while I was a bit surprised at the amount of speckles. The Blu-ray is far'n-away the most film-like image and faithful to theatrical of all editions.

Bumping from 5.1 is a DTS-HD Master which seemed more dynamic in the fight sequences (crowd noises, punches etc.) and cleaner for the music used in the film - Nat 'King' Cole, Perry Como, Tony Bennett and The Ink Spots to Pietro Mascagni's famous "Cavalleria Rusticana: Intermezzo". Bass sounded a bit stronger and there was some depth - there was decent range here. For the most part, I wouldn't say it was dramatically better than the 5.1 SE offering but even my ears could connote some positive audible superiority. There are foreign language DUBs and subtitle offered in English and other languages supporting the region free status of the disc.

Extras contain all the same supplements of the SE DVD 2-disc package from 3 years ago. Three excellent commentaries, of which I enjoyed hearing Martin Scorsese, Thelma Schoonmaker, Michael Chapman (in the 2nd) and writer Paul Schrader - in the third. I revisited the featurettes and nothing appears to be missing or added for that matter. In my notes I made no mention of anything being in HD.

I was hoping the Blu-ray transfer would give the existing grain some prominence and allow the grittiness of the film to be maintained. This looks and sounds about as good as I was anticipating and the film needs no accolades from me. One of the great works of modern cinema - and most impressive performances in the past 30 years has reached high-definition. If you don't own Blu-ray a player yet - this is certainly a bona-fide reason to indulge - and for those that do - this is essential. 

***


 

ON THE DVDS: The new SE shows the contrast boosting of the other two editions. It has softened the image and removed the grain (but I, personally, prefer the grain!). They have put in some dastardly awful subtitles - that are barely legible. Of course, the extras are extensive. The original MGM release was slightly cropped on the bottom edge, but shows a shade more on the top. The new SE has gone the framing route of the PAL edition.

One of the big upgrades is the audio boost to non-original 5.1 in the new edition. Aside from this and the extensive extras - I don't think the image is a great improvement. I don't think I would recommend picking up the Scorsese Film Collection Boxset - reviewed HERE, just for this unless you are keen on some of the other genre-unrelated films New York, New York, The Last Waltz and Boxcar Bertha. At least you can buy this as a single disc as well if you desire, but that would be defeating one of the only big plusses - the 2nd disc of extras. I found the commentaries a little labored and certainly only for strong fans. I would say take a pass on this - it just smells like MGM, a poor DVD production house, is trying to put your money in their pockets.

Bottom line: the new image is good for blowing up onto a big screen - tube owners won't feel much of a difference. The extras are the selling feature. The bumped audio is a bonus for fans of more dynamic sound.

 - Gary W Tooze

 


Some of the Blu-ray (and SE) Extras

 

 

DVD Menus

(MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT vs. MGM (1.85:1) - Region 1 - NTSC - MIDDLE vs. MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)

 

 

 

 


 

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

 

Subtitle Sample - NOTE: We can't obtain Blu-ray subtitle samples yet!

 

1) MGM Region FREE Blu-ray - TOP

2) MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - SECOND

3) MGM (original) - Region 1 - NTSC - THIRD

4) MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM

NOTE: Not exact frame capture.

 

 


Screen Captures

From the Criterion Laserdisc:

 

1) MGM Region FREE Blu-ray - TOP

2) MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - SECOND

3) MGM (original) - Region 1 - NTSC - THIRD

4) MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM

 

 

 


 

1) MGM Region FREE Blu-ray - TOP

2) MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - SECOND

3) MGM (original) - Region 1 - NTSC - THIRD

4) MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM

 

 

 


 

1) MGM Region FREE Blu-ray - TOP

2) MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - SECOND

3) MGM (original) - Region 1 - NTSC - THIRD

4) MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM

 

 


 

1) MGM Region FREE Blu-ray - TOP

2) MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - SECOND

3) MGM (original) - Region 1 - NTSC - THIRD

4) MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM

 

 


 

1) MGM Region FREE Blu-ray - TOP

2) MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - SECOND

3) MGM (original) - Region 1 - NTSC - THIRD

4) MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM

 

 


 

1) MGM Region FREE Blu-ray - TOP

2) MGM (S.E.- 2 disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - SECOND

3) MGM (original) - Region 1 - NTSC - THIRD

4) MGM (20th Anv.) - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM

 

 

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Extras: SE/ Blu-ray
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DVD Box Covers

   

   

   

   

NOTE: The SE (2 disc) edition of Raging Bull is available in the The Martin Scorsese Film Collection which also includes New York, New York, The Last Waltz and Boxcar Bertha. Reviewed HERE

CLICK to order from:

             

Distribution

MGM

Region FREE Blu-ray

MGM (SE)

Region 1 - NTSC

MGM
Region 1 - NTSC
MGM
Region 2 - PAL



 

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