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directed by James Ivory
India 19

Bombay Talkie is Merchant Ivory's affectionate, bemused view of Bollywood--India's huge dream factory. The film is like a brightly colored, sumptuous Indian sweet covered in gold foil, and cameraman Subrata Mitra's ravishing photography has never been surpassed in any other of James Ivory's films. The story, set off by elaborate studio numbers, is a melodrama echoing those of Bombay's mass audience movies and the sexy bestsellers of the film's heroine, American authoress Lucia Lane (Jennifer Kendal). Visiting India in search of "new material," she becomes romantically involved with a handsome movie star Vikram(Shashi Kapoor, Sammy and Rosie Get Laid). When that doesn't work, she flees to an ashram to take up the spiritual life. That also--hilariously--doesn't work out, and the ill-fated couple get together again with explosive results.


Theatrical Release: November 18th, 1970 - USA

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DVD Review: Home Vision -  Region 1 - NTSC

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Distribution Home Vision -  Region 1 - NTSC
Runtime 1:50:16 
Video 1.78:1 Original Aspect Ratio 16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.52 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s
  NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.



Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
Subtitles English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Merchant Ivory Productions
Production Company: Home Vision

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.77:1

DVD Release Date: November 11, 2003

Keep Case
Chapters: 16

Edition Details:
• New digital transfer, enhanced for widescreen televisions

Helen, Queen of the Nautch Girls, a documentary short film about the legendary Bollywood dancer, Helen

• Conversation with the Filmmakers, part of a new series of interviews with James Ivory, Ismail Merchant, and Ruth Prawer Jhabvala

• 4 page liner notes essay

Great colors although perhaps not quite as brilliant as Home Vision's "Heat and Dust" - another Merchant/Ivory release. The wonderful photography is anamorphically  shown in its correct aspect ratio. The audio was always clear if a little soft at times. Good Extras. This is a good DVD, if not a stellar one. I think I may have enjoyed the conversation with the filmmakers more than the main feature, but as far as technical specs go - this is a winner. If you are keen on the Merchant/Ivory series then this is a must have. out of       Gary W. Tooze

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DVD Box Cover


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Distribution Home Vision -  Region 1 - NTSC


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Gary Tooze

Many Thanks...