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http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/cassavetes.htm
USA 1968

 

The disintegration of a marriage is dissected in John Cassavetes’ searing Faces. Shot in high-contrast 16mm black and white, the film follows the futile attempts of captain of industry Richard (John Marley) and his wife, Maria (Lynn Carlin), to escape the anguish of their empty marriage in the arms of others. Featuring astonishingly powerful, nervy performances from Marley, Carlin, and Cassavetes regulars Gena Rowlands and Seymour Cassel, Faces confronts suburban alienation and the battle of the sexes with a brutal honesty and compassion rarely matched in cinema.

Poster

Theatrical Release: November 24, 1968

Reviews                                    More Reviews                                   DVD Reviews

Comparison:

Optimum (The John Cassavetes Collection) - Region 2 - PAL vs. Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films) - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC vs. BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray vs. Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Henrik Sylow and Gregory Meshman for the DVD Screen Caps!

1) Optimum (The John Cassavetes Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - LEFT

2) Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films) - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray FOURTH

5) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray RIGHT

 

Box Covers

Only available in the Boxset listed below:

Only available in the Boxset listed below: 

Only available in Criterion John Cassavetes: Five Films Blu-ray set:

   

The 6 - disc John Cassavetes Collection from Optimum includes: Shadows, Faces, A Woman Under The Influence, The Killing Of A Chinese Bookie, Opening Night with THESE LISTED EXTRAS.

The 8 - disc Criterion John Cassavetes - Five Films includes - Shadows, Faces, A Woman Under The Influence, The Killing Of A Chinese Bookie, Opening Night with THESE LISTED EXTRAS.

            

Distribution

Optimum

Region 2 - PAL

Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films)
Region 0 - NTSC
Pioneer
Region 0 - NTSC
BFI (UK)
Region FREE - Blu-ray
Criterion Collection - Spine #252
Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 2:04:33 (4% PAL speedup) 2:10:00 2:09:56 2:09:53.827 2:10:15.390
Video

1.78:1 Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.45 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

1.66:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 7:47 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.52 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 22,668,834,262 bytes

Feature: 22,241,362,368 bytes

Video Bitrate: 20.00 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 47,541,263,253 bytes

Feature: 29,539,565,568 bytes

Video Bitrate: 26.49 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate:

 

Optimum (The John Cassavetes Collection)

 

Bitrate:

 

Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films)

 

Bitrate:

 

Pioneer

 

Bitrate BFI

 

Blu-ray

Bitrate Criterion

 

Blu-ray

Audio 2.0 Dolby Digital English

1.0 Dolby Digital English

2.0 Dolby Digital English

LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit LPCM Audio English 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit
Subtitles No subtitles English, None No subtitles English, None English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Optimum

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.78:1

Edition Details:
• Seymour Cassel interviewed by Tom Charity (46:41 / 16x9)
• Alternative opening sequence with audio commentary by Peter Bogdanovich and Al Ruban (20:31)

Boxset has THESE LISTED EXTRAS.

DVD Release Date: September 12, 2005
Digipack Box

Chapters 19
 

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films)

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.66:1

Edition Details:
DISC TWO—THE SUPPLEMENTS

• 17-minute alternate opening sequence, from an early edit of the film
• Cinéastes de notre temps (1968, 48 minutes): an episode from the French television series dedicated to Cassavetes, featuring rare interviews and behind-the-scenes footage
• Making Faces: A new documentary including interviews with actors Lynn Carlin, Seymour Cassel, Gena Rowlands, and director of photography Al Ruban
• Lighting & Shooting the Film: Ruban explains how he and the crew achieved the distinct look of Faces, illustrated with specific sequences from the film

Boxset has THESE LISTED EXTRAS.
 

DVD Release Date: September 21st, 2004
Digipack Box

Chapters 19

Release Information:
Studio: Pioneer

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• Liner notes by Ray Carney
 

DVD Release Date: March 24th, 1998
Keep case

Chapters 23

Release Information:
Studio: BFI

Aspect Ratio:1.66

1080P Single-layered
Blu-ray

Disc Size: 22,668,834,262 bytes

Feature: 22,241,362,368 bytes

Video Bitrate: 20.00 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:
• Alternative opening sequence (17 minutes, DVD only)
• Optional audio commentary on alternative opening sequence by Peter Bogdanovich and Al Ruban (17 minutes, DVD only)
• Seymour Cassel interview with Tom Charity (46:41)
• Fully illustrated booklet

• DVD of Feature included

 

Blu-ray Release Date: April 23rd, 2012
Transparent thick Blu-ray case

Chapters 23

 

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films)

Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 47,541,263,253 bytes

Feature: 29,539,565,568 bytes

Video Bitrate: 26.49 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:
• 17-minute alternate opening sequence, from an early edit of the film
• Cinéastes de notre temps (1968, 48 minutes): an episode from the French television series dedicated to Cassavetes, featuring rare interviews and behind-the-scenes footage
• Making Faces: A new documentary including interviews with actors Lynn Carlin, Seymour Cassel, Gena Rowlands, and director of photography Al Ruban
• Lighting & Shooting the Film: Ruban explains how he and the crew achieved the distinct look of Faces, illustrated with specific sequences from the film

Boxset has THESE LISTED EXTRAS.
 

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22nd, 2013
Custom
Blu-ray package
Chapters: 19

 

 

Comments

NOTE: Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

 

ADDITION: Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray (September 2013): My comments will mimic the Shadows review. Very little difference. The Criterion is marginally more robust and the grain may be the beneficiary of that toggling between the two images. Same scratches - same source. Ditto for the audio - Criterion have a linear mono track. This five film set (Shadows, Faces, A Woman Under the Influence, The Killing of a Chinese Bookie, Opening Night) shows incredible value. Extras appears the same as the previous Criterion DVD of this film - Making faces documentary, Al Ruban interview etc. This Blu-ray set is looking like the release of the year!

 

***

 

ADDITION: BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray (April 2012): The story here is all about `grain`. The 1080P transfer supports the 16mm textures and gives the image such richness - looking light years apart from its SD counterparts - this is most prevalent in-motion. Same source - same damage marks exist but the BFI Blu-ray image is intoxicating in its film-like qualities. Any noise is overwhelmed by the film grain.

 

The audio is linear PCM fully adhering to the original production mono roots. Imperfections in scattered dialogue are part of the presentation adding to the verité charms. I thought is sounded wonderfully authentic. There are optional English subtitles on the region FREE Blu-ray disc.

 

The single-layered Blu-ray disc as no digital supplements but a region FREE PAL DVD disc is included with both the feature and some extras including the alternative opening sequence running about 17-minutes (same as on the Criterion) and there is an optional audio commentary on this alternative sequence by Peter Bogdanovich and Al Ruban (associate producer of Faces). There is also a 47-minute Seymour Cassel interview with Tom Charity discussing Cassavetes and the film - the package contains a 30-page fully illustrated booklet with photos, essays and a Cassavetes interview.

 

I can honestly state that seeing Faces in the thick, heavy appearance was a revelation in appreciation of the film qualities. Some may think Blu-ray was made for film like Star Wars - but I think this 16mm masterpiece is more of a perfect match for true cinema fans. Our highest recommendation - BFI have given us a sterling package.

Gary Tooze

***

ON THE DVDs: Again we pass on the early Pioneer disc. It is Open Matte. It is badly faded. No digital extras but the included liner notes essay by Ray Carney is, again, excellent.

Criterion has removable subs, the Optimum doesn't. Obviously those sensitive to PAL speed-up will have this as an issue in the Optimum.

NOTE: The Criterion disc has black borders on the sides typical of 1.66 anamorphic (capture 2). Looks like Optimum stretched the image to accommodate anamorphic enhancement filling the whole frame. We will investigate - if this is true Optimum have marred their boxset badly. Extras are listed above.

 - Gregory Meshman and Gary Tooze

 


Menus
(Optimum (The John Cassavetes Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - LEFT vs. Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films) - Region 0 - NTSC - MIDDLE vs. Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - RIGHT)


 

 

 

 

BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 

DVD included in the Blu-ray package

 

Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

 


 

CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920 X 1080 RESOLUTION

 

Screen Captures

 

1) Optimum (The John Cassavetes Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films) - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray FOURTH

5) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Optimum (The John Cassavetes Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films) - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray FOURTH

5) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Optimum (The John Cassavetes Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films) - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray FOURTH

5) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Optimum (The John Cassavetes Collection) - Region 2 - PAL - TOP

2) Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films) - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - THIRD

4) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray FOURTH

5) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

More Blu-ray Captures

 

1) BFI - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP

2) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


Hit Counter


Report Card:

 

Image:

Blu-rays

Sound:

Blu-rays

Extras: Criterion Blu-ray

 


Recommended Reading on Cassavetes (CLICK COVERS or TITLES for more information)

Check out more in "The Library"


Box Covers

Only available in the Boxset listed below:

Only available in the Boxset listed below: 

Only available in Criterion John Cassavetes: Five Films Blu-ray set:

   

The 6 - disc John Cassavetes Collection from Optimum includes: Shadows, Faces, A Woman Under The Influence, The Killing Of A Chinese Bookie, Opening Night with THESE LISTED EXTRAS.

The 8 - disc Criterion John Cassavetes - Five Films includes - Shadows, Faces, A Woman Under The Influence, The Killing Of A Chinese Bookie, Opening Night with THESE LISTED EXTRAS.

            

Distribution

Optimum

Region 2 - PAL

Criterion (Cassavetes - 5 Films)
Region 0 - NTSC
Pioneer
Region 0 - NTSC
BFI (UK)
Region FREE - Blu-ray
Criterion Collection - Spine #252
Region 'A' - Blu-ray




 

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Gary Tooze

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