(aka "Cafe Lumiere" or "Coffee Jikou" or "Kh jik")

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/hou.htm
Japan/Taiwan 2003

 

The opening shot of this pensive masterpiece is the Shochiku Studio logo, former studio of the great Yasujiro Ozu. Cut to a scene of a young woman on the telephone that is shot in long take from the fixed frame of a low angle camera. Move onto the following scene that has the same young woman on a train, insert a well-timed jump cut and suddenly, as if awakening from a dream, we find the vision of Yasujiro Ozu is no more, and the reality that this is in fact a Hou Hsiao-hsien film, begins to take form. Commissioned as part of a series commemorating the centenary of Ozu’s birth, this is not so much an attempt to mimic the filmic mastery of Ozu, than it is a telling tribute to one of the greatest of filmmakers of all-time. Hou places his characters in the realm of an Ozu film, or as J. Hoberman points out Hou is, “taking literally the title Tokyo Story.” The results have less in common with Ozu, and more to do with the dreamlike qualities of surrealism. Hou keeps most of the major events in the film off-screen, instead focusing his camera on the settings that these characters move around in—trains, cafes, bookshops—and the awe inspiring nostalgia he evokes is palpable amidst the dreamlike narrative. The plot is minimal, but the style itself is rich enough to communicate the themes of the past and history that is so important in Hou’s work. This is one of the world’s foremost auteurs at the top of his game and a damn gorgeous piece of filmmaking. out of

Adam Lemke

Posters

Theatrical Release: December 10th, 2003 Ozu Memorial

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

DVD Comparison: 

Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC

Big thanks to Adam Lemke for the Review!

(Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC LEFT vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC RIGHT)

DVD Box Cover

 

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Distribution

Sino Movie

Region 0 - NTSC

Wellspring (Fox/Lorber)

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 143 min 1:43:08
Video

1.78:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.81:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.86 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.

Bitrate Sino

Bitrate Wellspring

Audio Japanese DD 2.0 & 5.1 Japanese DD 2.0
Subtitles English, Chinese, None English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Sino Movie

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterboxed - 1.78:1

Edition Details:
• Cast & Synopsis
• Trailer
• Metro Lumiere: Documentary and Interview with Hsiao-hsien Hou (in French & Chinese with English subs)
• Full Color booklet in Chinese

DVD Release Date: May 10, 2005
n/a

Chapters 6

Release Information:
Studio: Wellspring Media

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterboxed - 1.81:1

Edition Details:
• Interview with Yo Hitoto (Taiwanese with English subs) (9:42)
• Interview with Tadanobu Asano(Taiwanese with English subs) (8:36)

• Interview with Hsiao-hsien Hou (Taiwanese with English subs) (8:13)
• Metro Lumiere: Documentary and Interview with Hsiao-hsien Hou (in French & Taiwanese with English subs) (59:26)

DVD Release Date: December 26th, 2005
Keep case

Chapters 12

 

  

Comments ADDITION: Wellspring - Dec 05': The anamorphic Wellspring is sharper but it is not progressive and has combing in all horizontal pans (see sample below). The Wellspring is also brighter, but may have some minor boosting to achieve this. Bottom line on image is that the Wellspring, despite is flaws, is far superior to the hazy Sino edition.

What qualifies the Wellspring as an worthy upgrade are the optionally subbed English extra features with three interviews (including one with Hou himself) and the inclusion of the hour long Metro Lumiere featurette.

Cineastes know the film deserves a better transfer, but many are also aware of Hou's relative anonymity with the mainstream and hence profitability for DVD production. I'm not a fan of Wellspring but at least they have put this out for release with some valued additions. It's a definite must-buy at this stage.

 - Gary Tpoze

****

A film this good deserves better. The non-anamorphic image gets a bit pixilated in spots, placing the quality at slightly below average. The colors are nicely balanced however and the subtitles are passable (despite an ugly font). The 1 hour extra (English subtitled) interview with Hou from a French special is quite nice. I’m going to recommend this disc, but I hope there is a better one in the near future.  out of   

 - Adam Lemke

 

 



DVD Menus
(Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC LEFT vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC RIGHT)

 

 
 

 


Screen Captures


Subtitle Sample

(Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC TOP vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 

 


(Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC TOP vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 

 


(Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC TOP vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 

 


(Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC TOP vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 

 


(Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC TOP vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC BOTTOM)

 

NOTE: Combing in Wellspring

 

 

 


(Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC TOP vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC BOTTOM)

 

 

 


  (Sino Movie - Region 0 - NTSC TOP vs. Wellspring - Region 1- NTSC BOTTOM)

 

Further 'combing' sample in Wellspring

 

Report Card:

 

Image:

Wellspring

Sound:

Sino (for 5.1 option)

Extras:

Wellspring

Menu:

Wellspring

 

 

 

DVD Box Cover

 

Thinking of buying from YesAsia? CLICK HERE and use THIS UPDATED BEAVER PAGE to source their very best...

 

 

Distribution

Sino Movie

Region 0 - NTSC

Wellspring (Fox/Lorber)

Region 1 - NTSC




 

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