(aka 'Closely Observed Trains" or "Closely Watched Trains")

directed by Jirí Menzel
Czechoslovakia 19

At a village railway station in occupied Czechoslovakia, a bumbling dispatcher’s apprentice longs to liberate himself from his virginity. Oblivious to the war and the resistance that surrounds him, this young man embarks on a journey of sexual awakening and self-discovery, encountering a universe of frustration, eroticism, and adventure within his sleepy backwater depot. Wry and tender, Academy Award™-winning Closely Watched Trains is a masterpiece of human observation and one of the best-loved films of the Czech New Wave.



Theatrical Release: November 18th, 1966 - Czechoslovakia

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DVD Review: Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC

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Distribution Criterion Collection - Spine # 131 - Region 0 - NTSC
Runtime 1:33:21 
Video 1.30:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.68 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 Czech, German (Dolby Digital 1.0) 
Subtitles English, None

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion / Home Vision

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.30:1

Edition Details:

• U.S. theatrical trailer
• 10-page liner notes essay by Richard Schickel

DVD Release Date: September 18th, 2001

Keep Case
Chapters: 20



This transfer is pretty good. There are moments when we see some existing damage, but overall the contrast is top-notch and there is some nice film grain showing. The compositions of the images are framed so beautiful I felt like I could have taken captures all day. No digital extras except a sleazy looking US trailer. Competent liner notes and another Criterion in the lower price tier. A rare Czech film from Criterion. A very worthy viewing - good film to own.  out of  

Gary W. Tooze


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