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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "A Zoo: A Zed & Two Noughts")

directed by Peter Greenaway
UK 1985

While visiting Groombridge in Kent my attention kept returning to the moated manor house in the beautifully maintained gardens. As I was wondering why it looked so familiar I noticed a plaque with the heading ‘The Draughtsman’s View’. Of course! Looking around I could hear Michael Nyman’s score in my head and almost imagine Anthony Higgins walking along the path wearing that fabulous wig of long dark curls.

 

It’s about time that Mr Greenaway’s films received a DVD release. His visuals, even those of decaying carcasses as in ‘A Zed and Two Noughts’, are some of the most stunning I have seen. They are reminiscent of rich oil paintings inviting you to reach out and caress the textures on the screen.

 

The Draughtsman’s Contract’ utilizes my favourite recurring theme in Greenaway’s films, which involves women doing away with the men in their lives. His stories are definitely unique and can be somewhat unsettling but once viewed they are seldom forgotten.

Wendy Carey

(Aka Cissie Colpitts )

Posters

Theatrical Release: April 9th, 1985 - UK

Reviews       More Reviews       DVD Reviews

Comparison:

Fox / Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC vs. BFI - Region 2 - PAL vs. BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Bill McApline for Fox/lorber DVD captures!

1) Fox/Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - LEFT

2) BFI - Region 2 - PAL  - SECOND

3) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray - RIGHT

 

Box Covers

 

Distribution

Fox - Lorber

Region 0  - NTSC

BFI
Region 2 - PAL
BFI
Region FREE -
Blu-ray
Runtime 1:56:36 1:51:48 (4% PAL speedup) 1:56:34.041
Video

1.66:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.92 mb/s
NTSC 704x480 29.97 f/s

1.66:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 7.29
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

Disc Size: 45,748,061,528 bytes

Feature Size: 33,590,366,208 bytes

Average Bitrate: 31.99 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC Video 1080P

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

Bitrate:

Fox Lorber

 

Bitrate:

BFI

 

Bitrate:

BFI Blu-ray

 

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)

English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)

English (LPCM Audio 2304 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bit)
Subtitles None French, Dutch and none English and none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Fox Lorber

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterbox - 1.66:1

Edition Details:
• All Regions
• Color, Widescreen
• Production notes
• Widescreen letterbox format

DVD Release Date: June 10, 2003
Keep Case

Chapters 9

Release Information:
Studio: BFI Video

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic -
1.66:1

Edition Details:
• Director Commentary by Peter Greenaway
• Selected Scenes from "?0, zoo!" - The making of a fiction film (6:54)
• Introduction to the Film by Peter Greenaway (6:39)
• Trailer for "The Draughtsman's Contract" and "A Zed and Two Noughts"

DVD Release Date: February 23rd, 2004
Transparent
Keep Case

Chapters 26

Release Information:
Studio: BFI Video

 

Disc Size: 45,748,061,528 bytes

Feature Size: 33,590,366,208 bytes

Average Bitrate: 31.99 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC Video 1080P

Edition Details:
• Full feature commentary with director Peter Greenaway
• Video introduction by Peter Greenaway(6:56)
• Extracts from Zoo! (7:13)
• Original theatrical trailer
• The Sea in Their Blood (27:36)
• A fully illustrated booklet featuring film notes, biography, review and interview"

 

Blu-ray Release Date: August 23rd, 2010
Standard
Blu-ray Case

Chapters 26

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: BFI Region FREE Blu-ray - (August 2010) - The first thing to note is that this Blu-ray blows all previous editions out of the water in every respect. Let's start with the image. Neither of the previous editions were particularly good looking (although I can only go by Gary's captures, in which he notes that the BFI SD-DVD captures are not at full resolution), with clarity being the main problem. With the HD remastering, the problem is taken care of with a virtually flawless image. Colors look true (though perhaps a little faded in mid-80s style), I caught no instances of damage and the detail remains consistently pleasing. Like most of their recent blu-rays, the BFI chose to use linear PCM stereo, which results in a pleasant, if not overly impressive, track that competently gets the job done. Everything is crisp and clear, without any unwanted background noises. The disc also sports optional English subtitles. The BFI has also updated their already impressive extras with the addition of an early Greenaway short entitled "The Sea in Their Blood". Undoubtedly this is the route to go if you're interested in the film. Knowing that this is a a region free release, fan's - who are adopters of the newer format - have no reason not to indulge. Highly recommended.

Brian Montgomery
August 17th, 2010

The BFI release is much brighter than the Fox Lorber. The colors are definitely different and my guess is the anamorphic BFI is more accurate. The Fox seems to have a sepia/greenish tinge to it. Unfortunately because the native resolution of the BFI is so much higher than the Fox (1024 -> 720)- the screen captures must be parsed down not giving a totally accurate representation of superior image quality in this case. If you have a projection system or widescreen TV you will definitely want the BFI version. Likewise if you are a big fan or Greenaway and the film - you will want the BFI version for the commentary, Greenaway's intro etc. The BFI image is slightly cropped - looks to be around 4% - the same as if you anamorphized a 1.85 film to 1.78. The BFI version has wonderful animated menus with  sound. Our choice is the BFI version. 

Gary W. Tooze


DVD Menus

(Fox/Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - LEFT vs. BFI - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)


 

 


 

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

 

Screen Captures

 

1) Fox/Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

2) BFI - Region 2 - PAL  - SECOND

3) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM



1) Fox/Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

2) BFI - Region 2 - PAL  - SECOND

3) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) Fox/Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

2) BFI - Region 2 - PAL  - SECOND

3) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Fox/Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

2) BFI - Region 2 - PAL  - SECOND

3) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) Fox/Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

2) BFI - Region 2 - PAL  - SECOND

3) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM


1) Fox/Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

2) BFI - Region 2 - PAL  - SECOND

3) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

More Blu-ray Captures:

 

 

 

 

 


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Report Card:

 

Image:

Blu-ray

Sound:

Blu-ray

Extras:

 Blu-ray / BFI

 

Box Covers

 

Distribution

Fox - Lorber

Region 0  - NTSC

BFI
Region 2 - PAL
BFI
Region FREE -
Blu-ray

 



 

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Gary Tooze

Mississauga, Ontario,

   CANADA