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directed by Joseph Losey
UK 1963

Wealthy wastrel James Fox hires insouciant cockney Dirk Bogarde as a valet. No sooner has he donned his working clothes than Bogarde begins exercising a subtle but insidious control over his master. Suggesting that the house could use a little fixing up, Bogarde convinces Fox to spend a whopping amount of money on it. But this is just a warm-up session for Bogarde, who by mid-film is calling all the shots in the Fox household, all the while pretending to keep his place. Fox's fiance Wendy Craig sees through Bogarde's game. Bogarde then brings his own lady friend Sarah Miles into the house. At Bogarde's insistence, Miles seduces Fox, thereby loosening Craig's hold on the confused young man. And so it goes. The homosexual subtext of The Servant disturbed some of the more hidebound critics of 1963; Harold Pinter based his cryptic screenplay on a novel by Robin Maugham.

Posters

Theatrical Release: November, 1963 - UK

Reviews                               More Reviews                                DVD Reviews

 Comparison:

Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL vs. Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Pieter Boven and Gregory Meshman for the DVD Screen Caps!

1) Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL - LEFT

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray RIGHT

 

Box Covers

Distribution

Studio Canal

Region 2 - PAL

Anchor Bay
Region 1 - NTSC
Studio Canal
Region 'B' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:50:37 (4% PAL speedup) 1:55:12 1:55:21.915
Video

1.66:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 8.46 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

1.66:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 4.56 mb/s
NTSC 704x480 29.97 f/s

1.66:1 / 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 40,909,612,649 bytes

Feature: 22,394,088,000 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Average Bitrate: 22.01 Mbps

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

Bitrate:

Studio Canal

Bitrate:

 

Anchor Bay

 

Bitrate:

 

Blu-ray

 

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)

English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)

DTS-HD Master Audio English 930 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 930 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio German 1420 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1420 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 24-bit)
Subtitles French, none None English, German, French, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Studio Canal

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.66:1

Edition Details:
• French or English menus
• Filmographies of Jospeh Losey, Dirk Bogarde, Sarah Miles & James Fox
• Trailer
• Photo gallery

DVD Release Date: November 30, 2000
Keepcase

Chapters 8

Release Information:
Studio: Anchor Bay

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.66:1

Edition Details:
• Biographies and filmographies of Jospeh Losey, Dirk Bogarde, Harold Pinter
• Trailer

 

DVD Release Date: December 18, 2001
Keepcase

Chapters 24

Release Information:
Studio: Studio Canal

 

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 40,909,612,649 bytes

Feature: 22,394,088,000 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Average Bitrate: 22.01 Mbps

 

Edition Details:
• 
James Fox interviewed by Richard Ayoade (45:26 in 576i)
Interview with Wendy Craig (5:26 in 576i)
Interview with Sarah Miles (10:18 in 576i)
Interview with Stephen Wooley (fan of the film) (10:34)
Harry Burton (Pinter expert) on Harold Pinter (13:02)
John Coldstream (Bogarde biographer) on Dirk Bogarde (18:37)
Audio interview with Douglas Slocombe (Director of photography) (19:18)
Joseph Losey and Adolfas Mekas at the New York film festival (27:59)
Harold Pinter Tempo interview (30:20)
Joseph Losey talks about The Servant (5:41)
Stills gallery
Trailer (2:38)

18-page liner notes booklet case
 

Blu-ray Release Date: April 8th, 2013
Bookstyle Blu-ray case

Chapters 12

Comments

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

 

ADDITION: Studio Canal - Region 'B' Blu-ray - June 2013': Whopping improvement over the SD transfers. Studio Canal's 1080P has wonderful contrast and shows some grain textures. Whites are brighter, blacks darker and there is more information in the 1.66:1 frame. The original English audio, and an included German DUB, are in lossless. There are optional subtitles on the region 'B' locked Blu-ray disc.

 

The European disc is stacked with over 3-hours of extras - mostly in the form of interviews with principals or experts on Pinter or Losey. There are all in 576i resolution. The package is a smart book-style case with 18-pages of liner notes. Brilliant offering from Studio Canal. Stellar a/v and endless, important supplements. Strongly recommended!

 

***

ON THE DVDs: This French edition seems to be out of print and is replaced by a digipack with a different cover and a new extra, analysis of the film by French critic Jean Douchet (in French no doubt). I assume the transfer is the same ( as this Studio Canal version), but I can't give any guarantees.

 - Pieter Boven

The Studio Canal version is brighter and marginally tighter and sharper. It also has superior contrast. I see no significant cropping on either. The French Region 2 has French subtitles (and optional French/English menus) and the Anchor Bay has no subs. There is original mono audio on both. I suppose the Studio Canal inches ahead on Extras with the 'photo gallery' inclusion. Go with the Studio Canal edition!

 - Gary Tooze


Menus

(Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL - LEFT vs. Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC - RIGHT)
 

 

 

Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

 


 

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

 

Screen Captures

 

1) Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


 

1) Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Studio Canal - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Studio Canal - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

More Blu-ray Captures

 

 


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Image:

Blu-ray

Sound:

Blu-ray

Extras:

Blu-ray

 

Box Covers

Distribution

Studio Canal

Region 2 - PAL

Anchor Bay
Region 1 - NTSC
Studio Canal
Region 'B' - Blu-ray


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