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The Eric Rohmer Collection

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/rohmer.htm
USA 1972 - 1987

This Arrow Films collection bring together 8 of Eric Rohmer's most influential films, including all 6 films from his Comedies and Proverbs series.

    'Love In The Afternoon'    'The Marquise Of O'    'The Aviator's Wife'     'A Good Marriage'    'Pauline At The Beach'    'Full Moon In Paris'    'The Green Ray'     'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend'  

Big Thanks to Per-Alof Strandberg for the comparison caps!

DVD Review: Arrow Films -  Region 0 - PAL

Box and order logo:

 

 

Distribution Arrow Films - Region 0 - PAL
Audio French (Dolby Digital original mono)
Subtitles English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Films

Aspect Ratio:
All, as intended - 1.33:1 except Pauline at the Beach at 1.66

Edition Details:
• 'The Aviator's Wife', 'A Good Marriage', 'Pauline At The Beach', 'Full Moon In Paris', 'The Green Ray', 'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend', 'Love In The Afternoon' and 'The Marquise Of O'.

• See individual DVDs for more details
• Number of discs: 8

DVD Release Date:
May 23rd, 2005
2 separate 4-tiered digi-paks in a cardboard box

 

Comments:

Eric Rohmer may have been my first real endeavor and concert effort to delve into foreign cinema (see my old in-need-of-update website on him HERE). I would watch his film early on Sunday morning, often eating re-heated Chinese food from the night before. His style captured me with its simplicity of production and intensity of the human emotional expressions of love, jealousy, selfishness, sexual dalliance, desire, morality, humor and impropriety. Rohmer's ability to capture the female essence on film may be unmatched.

 

All of these Arrow DVDs have been released prior to this new Boxset, but the overwhelmingly appeal is the unbeatable price (about $50 US for 8 films/DVDs). Individually they go for as much as $30 US/ 15 GBP each. Now I wasn't too bad at mathematics - we're talking about a potential savings of $190 US by purchasing the package as opposed to buying individually. (NOTE: It is possible that the price is in error - and may be increased later )

 

It seems that most of the transfers were ported from the Gaumont/ CTSHV French DVDs in some form of licensing agreement, BUT of course the big appeal is that the Arrow editions have English subtitles were the Gaumont do not. All of the Arrow DVDs have many similar attributes - solid but not pristine transfers in the original aspect ratio (all 1.33 for these Rohmer films except Pauline at the Beach in 1.66) - original mono audio, optional English subtitles and all are region 0 PAL. Many have some form of extra feature (which we will identify on an individual basis below).

 

There may be a good reason why Criterion never embarked on transferring these to their label - Rohmer's technical production techniques would be considered quite archaic by today's standards. Many shot using 16mm with very basic monaural audio tracks. It would be very hard to improve upon the existing weak source material.

 

In many instances below we tried to compare the Arrow DVDs to the atrocious Region 1 transfers from Fox/Lorber produced many years ago. These are often analog with burned in subtitles, improper PAL->NTSC conversions and hence poor ghosting and the associated artifact problems of that sloppy production method.

 

 Good job Arrow Films ! out of     

Gary W. Tooze


(aka "Love in the Afternoon" or "Chloe in the Afternoon")

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/rohmer.htm
France 1972

The last of Rohmer's Six Moral Tales. Frederic leads a bourgeois life; he is a partner in a small Paris office and is happily married to Helene, a teacher expecting her second child. In the afternoons, Frederic daydreams about other women, but has no intention of taking any action. One day, Chloe, who had been a mistress of an old friend, begins dropping by his office. They meet as friends, irregularly in the afternoons, till eventually Chloe decides to seduce Frederic, causing him a moral dilemma.

Posters

Theatrical Release: September 29th, 1972

Reviews      More Reviews      DVD Reviews

Cover and Individual purchase link:

 

or order the Entire Arrow Films Boxset including  'The Aviator's Wife', 'A Good Marriage', 'Pauline At The Beach', 'Full Moon In Paris', 'The Green Ray', 'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend', 'Love In The Afternoon' and 'The Marquise Of O'.

 

Runtime 1:33:21 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.38 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s 

Chapters : 12

Bitrate:

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

Features Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Films

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33

Edition Details:
• VERONIQUE ET SON CANCRE (17:39) English subs
• TRAILER (in 1:1.85) (3:53)


DVD Release Date: October 27th, 2003
Keep Case

Chapters 12

Comments:

 

Well, I think the producers of the Fox-Lorber edition should be held accountable for this absolute mess they released. It is one of the worst DVDs I own (see image below). Although the Arrow Films is a definite improvement - it is not without its flaws too. It has a greenish tinge to it that permeates the entire production. RE: the aspect ratio, the director of photography, Nestor Almendros, states that (1.33:1) is correct. The Arrow Films DVD is obviously the one to get. It has Veronique et son cancre and a trailer as an Extra and removable English subtitles as well as a much improved image.  out of     

NOTE: Compared fully to the Fox-Lorber edition HERE.



DVD Menus

 


Subtitle Sample

 

 


Screen Captures

 

(Fox Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Films - Region 0 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 



(aka "La Marquise d'O" or The Marquise of O" )

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/rohmer.htm
West Germany / France 1976

 

Set in 1799 whilst the Russian General Souvarof is invading Italy, this story center\ around the beautiful, young widow the Marquise of O. Left alone as her father commands a zone in the thick of battle against the Russians, she is captured by a band of soldiers only to be rescued by a young Russian Count. Unconscious at the time of her attack, she has no recollection of events and only when she begins to experience strange feelings and sensations, does she realize that she could be carrying his child.

Poster

Theatrical Release: May 19th, 1976 - France

Reviews    More Reviews    DVD Reviews

Cover and Individual purchase link:

or order the Entire Arrow Films Boxset including  'The Aviator's Wife', 'A Good Marriage', 'Pauline At The Beach', 'Full Moon In Paris', 'The Green Ray', 'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend', 'Love In The Afternoon' and 'The Marquise Of O'.

 

Runtime 1:38:18 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.57 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s  

Chapters : 12

Features

Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Films (UK)

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Trailer (in 1:1.66) 3:59

DVD Release Date:
May 24th, 2004
Transparent Keep case
Chapters: 12

Bitrate:

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

Comments:

 

It's nice to see the Arrow Films has again come up to speed with these Rohmer films for English speaking audiences. Colors are vibrant, defined and rich... bordering on saturation. Regardless, they look great if not of the same soft pallet. Of course the big bonus are the removable subtitles and superior image to the Fox Lorber (ABOUT TIME!). As the Arrow are done properly there is no ghosting. It is dark and skin tones have some excessive red in them. The extras pale in comparison to the two disc Gaumont. Still, I am happy with the Arrow Films edition as it eclipses my very old (and poorly done) Fox Lorber DVD !

NOTE Compared fully to the Fox-Lorber and Gaumont editions HERE.



DVD Menus

 


Subtitle Sample


Screen Captures


 

 

 

(aka "La Femme de l'aviateur ou 'on ne saurait penser à rien")

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/rohmer.htm

 

La Femme de l'aviateur was the first in Eric Rohmer's celebrated Comedies and Proverbs series. Francois (Philippe Marlaud) loves Anne (Marie Rivière). However, his nightshift job at the post office means they rarely get to spend much time together. One day, he sees her leaving home with her ex, Christian (Mathieu Carrière), who had come to break up with her for good. Reeling from the news, Anne lets Francois fall prey to his jealous imagination. Obsessed with the idea that she may have cheated on him, Francois decides to stay up all night. As he wanders, desolate, through the streets of Paris, he comes across his rival sitting in a cafe with a blonde-haired woman. Intrigued, he follows them. A young woman catches on to what he's up to and accosts him in an alley off the Buttes-Chaumont...

Poster

Theatrical Release: March 4th, 1981 - France

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

Cover and Individual purchase link:

or order the Entire Arrow Films Boxset including  'The Aviator's Wife', 'A Good Marriage', 'Pauline At The Beach', 'Full Moon In Paris', 'The Green Ray', 'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend', 'Love In The Afternoon' and 'The Marquise Of O'.

 

Runtime 1:41:46 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.65 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s 

Chapters : 12

Features Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Film Distributors

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• ERIC ROHMER ON LA FEMME DE L'AVIATEUR 00:10:14 (English subs)
• 
Trailer (in 1:1.66) 02.22
 

DVD Release Date: April 12th, 2004
Transparent keep

Chapters 12

Bitrate:

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

Comments:

 

Everything about the Arrow Films version is better than the compared Fox edition (see below). The Fox is cropped slightly on all 4 sides, the subtitles are burned in and it was taken directly from a PAL source so will include associated artifacts and ghosting in motion sequences. Lots of film grain and smooth contrast on the Region 0 - PAL DVD. The Arrow films has a nice 10 minute Rohmer feature as well. This is a great Eric Rohmer work and I am glad to see it available with some dignity (and English subs). Don't hesitate - buy the Arrow Films today.   

NOTE: Compared fully to the Fox-Lorber edition HERE.



DVD Menus

 


Subtitle Sample

 


Screen Captures

(Fox Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Film Distributors - Region 0 - PAL - BOTTOM)


 

(aka "A Good Marriage" or "The Well-Made Marriage")

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/rohmer.htm
France 1982

Headstrong Sabine (Beatrice Romand), who is working on her thesis in Art History, has tired of affairs with married men, such as Simon (Feodor Atkine). Playing cupid, her best friend Clarisse (Arielle Dombasle) introduces her lawyer cousin Edmond (Andre Dusollier) to Sabine. Encouraged by Clarisse, Sabine impetuously decides that she will marry Edmond and tells her mother (Thamila Megrah) and sister Lise (Sophie Renoir). When confronted by Sabine, Edmond is forced to explain why he is not ready for matrimony!

Posters (CLICK to enlarge)

Theatrical Release: May 19th, 1982 - France

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

Cover and Individual purchase link:

or order the Entire Arrow Films Boxset including  'The Aviator's Wife', 'A Good Marriage', 'Pauline At The Beach', 'Full Moon In Paris', 'The Green Ray', 'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend', 'Love In The Afternoon' and 'The Marquise Of O'.

 

Runtime 1:34:18 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.9 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s 

Chapters : 12

Features Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Films

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect ratio : 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Eric Rohmer on LE BEAU MARIAGE (7:55)
• Trailer  (1:50)

DVD Release Date: February 9th, 2004
Transparent Keep Case

Chapters 12

Bitrate:

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

Comments:

 

The Arrow Films is far superior in every category in comparison to the NTSC Fox/Lorber, with better contrast and sharpness. The Fox has non-removable subs and pitiful Extras. The Arrow Films has a short of Rohmer discussing the film and a trailer. Go with the new Arrow Films !

NOTE: Compared fully to the Fox-Lorber and Gaumont editions HERE.



DVD Menus

 


Subtitle Sample

 


Screen Captures

Fox Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Films - Region 0 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 


 

( aka "Pauline at the Beach" )

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/rohmer.htm
France 1983

 

"Pauline at the Beach is a witty, unassuming, and acutely observant film on the inconstancy of human relationships and the dilemma of adolescent sexuality. The film is the third installment in Eric Rohmer's Comedies and Proverbs, a series of six films that wryly, but compassionately, examine the moral ambiguity and conflicted guidance of young people in contemporary society. By exposing the hypocrisy and duplicity of the adults in Pauline's life, Rohmer exposes the pervasive narcissism and selfishness of the older generation that invariably reflect in the young heroine's uncertainty over the direction of her own emotional maturity. As Pauline finds herself abandoned by the capricious Marion alone on the beach, she is literally pulled into the conflicting moral attitudes of Pierre and Henri, as her entrusted care becomes a source of animosity between the two men. Inevitably, neither ideology can reconcile Pauline's awkward and uncertain transition into the social interactions of the adult world."

Excerpt taken from Strictly Film School Located HERE

Poster

 

Reviews    More Reviews

 

Cover and Individual purchase link:

or order the Entire Arrow Films Boxset including  'The Aviator's Wife', 'A Good Marriage', 'Pauline At The Beach', 'Full Moon In Paris', 'The Green Ray', 'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend', 'Love In The Afternoon' and 'The Marquise Of O'.

 

Runtime 1:30:30
Video

1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.9 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s 

Chapters : 12

Features Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Films

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect ratio : 1.62:1

Edition Details:

• Interview with Eric Rohmer (12:54) - subtitled in English

• Trailer  (1:41)

• Radio 'chat' with Rohmer (audio only) English subtitles  (6:31)

DVD Release Date: July 12th, 2004
Transparent Keep Case

Chapters 12

Bitrate:

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

Comments:

 

NOTE: This is the only widescreen ratio film of Eric Rohmers in the Arrow Boxset. It was shot at 1.66.

This may be an example where the Region 1 (MGM) is slightly sharper than the Arrow films DVD. It also appears that the Arrow is slightly cropped on the left edge. I see neither color balance as accurate and of course, the Arrow is 16X9 enhanced and the MGM is not.  out of     

NOTE: the MGM is reviewed HERE



DVD Menus

 


Subtitle Sample

 


Screen Captures

(Arrow Films - Region 0 - TOP vs. MGM - Region 1- NTSC BOTTOM)


 

(aka "Full Moon In Paris")

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/rohmer.htm

France - 1984

 

Louise lives with Rémi in Marne-la-Vallée. He is an architect, she is an interior decorator. Their lives would be perfect if Rémi were less of a homebody, and if Louise were not such a night owl. Conscious of preserving her independence, Louise rents a pied-à-terre in Paris. Octave, her friend and confidant, is always ready to accompany her during her night prowls. One evening, beneath a full moon, and Octave's jealous, loving gaze, she succumbs to the charms of a sensual dancer. As day breaks she realizes, however, that she would much rather be with Rémi.

Posters (CLICK to enlarge)

Theatrical Release: 29 August 1984 - France

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

Cover and Individual purchase link:

or order the Entire Arrow Films Boxset including  'The Aviator's Wife', 'A Good Marriage', 'Pauline At The Beach', 'Full Moon In Paris', 'The Green Ray', 'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend', 'Love In The Afternoon' and 'The Marquise Of O'.

 

Runtime 1:37:06 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.45 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s 

Chapters : 12

Features Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Film Distributors

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• Trailer (01:32)
Eric Rohmer talks about his films (6:45) English subs.
Audio interview with Eric Rohmer (55:49) The audio interview is translated to English (First there is a interviewer asking a question in English, then a translator translates it to French and Eric Rohmer answers the question in French, and the translator translates it back to English)
 

DVD Release Date: March 22nd, 2004
Transparent Keep Case

Chapters 12

Bitrate:

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

Comments:

 

Looks like both the Fox and Arrow Films come from the same print, so they have similar sharpness. The Fox has been artificially brightened (distorting colors - see lifejacket on wall) and was taken from a PAL source  and of course has burned in subtitles. The Fox is cropped a little on the right edge and on the bottom. The Arrow Films has good film grain and superior Extras and is the one to own.   

NOTE: Fully compared to the Fox/Lorber edition HERE



DVD Menus

 


Subtitle Sample

 


Screen Captures

 

(Fox Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. Arrow Film Distributors - Region 0 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 


 

(aka "The Green Ray" or "Summer")

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/rohmer.htm
France 1986

 

Rohmer has set this up similar to other films of his in the diary sense where the highlights of each day are chaptered and displayed to us. Often nothing happens on certain days, much like "real life".  After many walks alone she finds examples that she may be cursed. Finding a playing card on the street, the color of self-help signs and horoscopes all give us (and her) pause for thought. She rebukes obvious advances from men rejecting their proposals, relating later she would rather be alone than have the empty feeling of a one-night stand. Being particular about what sort of company she's in and feeling down, she eavesdrops on a conversation of elderly people who discuss Jules Verne’s book, “Le Rayon Vert” (The Green Ray). The short answer to your question, “What is the Green Ray?”, well, it is a rare optical effect (a green beam) exhibited by the sun at precisely the moment it is completing setting. For those who view, it is said to help them truly understand their own inner feelings. Already giving evidence of being bohemian/spartan in her lifestyle, she's at loose ends and add to that an emotionally weak state, and this overheard conversation has an effect on her. Perhaps all she needs is a sign? 

Excerpt Taken from Gary W. Tooze's review HERE

 

Posters

Release Date: August 31st, 1986 - Venice Film Festival

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

 

Cover and Individual purchase link:

or order the Entire Arrow Films Boxset including  'The Aviator's Wife', 'A Good Marriage', 'Pauline At The Beach', 'Full Moon In Paris', 'The Green Ray', 'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend', 'Love In The Afternoon' and 'The Marquise Of O'.

 

Runtime 1:34:18 (4% PAL speedup)
Video 1.33 Original Aspect Ratio 
Average Bitrate: 4.5 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Films (UK)

Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen (Standard) - 1.33:1

 

Edition Details:
• Eric Rohmer on "The Green  Ray" (8:29)
• Widescreen Trailer

DVD Release Date: January 26th, 2004
Transparent Keep Case

Chapters 12

Bitrate:

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

Comments:

 

My favorite Rohmer film has benefited from a recent restoration, of which, the Arrow films is the only DVD (with English subtitles) available. Remembering this was shot with 16mm, the new Arrow DVD looks remarkable. Another Rohmer discussion on the film is included. Excellent!   out of     

NOTE: Fully compared to the Fox/Lorber and Manga editions HERE.



DVD Menus

 


Subtitle Sample

(Arrow Films (UK) Region 0- PAL TOP vs. Fox / Lorber - Region 0 - NTSC - CENTER vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)


Screen Captures

 

(aka "My Girlfriend's Boyfriend" or "Boyfriends and Girlfriends")

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/rohmer.htm

France 1987

Blanche has recently moved to Cergy-Pontoise to work at the town hall. During a lunch break she meets the vivacious and immediately likable Léa. Although she is not fond of sports, Léa agrees to go swimming with Blanche at the local pool. There they meet Alexandre, one of Léa's acquaintances, along with Adrienne, his current girlfriend. Blanche finds herself under the spell of the young engineer. The holidays arrive, Léa leaves while Blanche stays on. By chance, Blanche bumps into Alexandre in the street. She clumsily tries to make a pass at him. Soon she’s also bumping into Fabien, Léa’s boyfriend.

Posters

Theatrical Release: August 26th, 1987 - France

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews 

Cover and Individual purchase link:

or order the Entire Arrow Films Boxset including  'The Aviator's Wife', 'A Good Marriage', 'Pauline At The Beach', 'Full Moon In Paris', 'The Green Ray', 'My Girlfriend's Boyfriend', 'Love In The Afternoon' and 'The Marquise Of O'.

 

Runtime 1:38:51 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.52 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s 

Chapters : 12

Features Release Information:
Studio: Arrow Film Distributors

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• Changing landscape (Métamorphoses du paysage (22:19) (1964)
• Trailer (01:54)

 

DVD Release Date: October 20th, 2003
Transparent keep

Chapters 12

Bitrate:

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

Comments:

 

Like the Fox Region 1 edition, this is weak and there is 'combing' noticeable indicating an analog transfer. The removable subtitles are excellent and a short feature film is included.   out of    

NOTE: Full comparison to the Fox/Lorber HERE



DVD Menus

 


Subtitle Sample


Screen Captures


 


Recommended Reading in French Cinema (CLICK COVERS or TITLES for more information)

 

French Cinema: A Student's Guide
by Philip Powrie, Keith Reader
Agnes Varda by Alison Smith Godard on Godard : Critical Writings by Jean-Luc Godard Notes on the Cinematographer by Robert Bresson Robert Bresson (Cinematheque Ontario Monographs, No. 2)
by James Quandt
The Art of Cinema by Jean Cocteau French New Wave
by Jean Douchet, Robert Bonnono, Cedric Anger, Robert Bononno
French Cinema: From Its Beginnings to the Present
by Remi Fournier Lanzoni

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