Search DVDBeaver

S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/cassavetes.htm
USA 1977

 

Broadway actress Myrtle Gordon (Gena Rowlands) rehearses for her latest play, about a woman unable to admit that she is aging. When she witnesses the accidental death of an adoring young fan, she begins to confront the personal and professional turmoil she faces in her own life. Featuring a moving performance by Rowlands (and with some scenes shot on stages with live audiences reacting freely to the writing and performing), John Cassavetes’ Opening Night exposes the drama of an actress who at great personal cost makes a part her own.

Posters

Theatrical Release: December 22, 1977

Reviews                               More Reviews                                 DVD Reviews

 Comparison:

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

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

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

2) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Criterion (John Cassavetes: Five Films) - 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

Pioneer
Region 0 - NTSC
Criterion
Region 0 - NTSC
BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray Criterion Collection - Spine #255
Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 2:18:08 (4% PAL speedup) 2:22:36 2:24:10 2:24:03.676 2:24:22.612
Video

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.73 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

1.33 Open Matte format
Average Bitrate: mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.82:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.6 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 44,372,158,637 bytes

Feature: 43,560,904,704 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 35.00 Mbps

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 49,047,238,490 bytes

Feature: 38,943,086,592 bytes

Video Bitrate: 31.98 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:

 

Pioneer

 

Bitrate:

 

Criterion (John Cassavetes: Five Films)

 

Bitrate: BFI

Blu-ray

 

Bitrate: Criterion

Blu-ray

 

Audio 2.0 Dolby Digital English

English (Dolby Digital 2.0)

English (Dolby Digital 1.0)

LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit
Commentary: 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 None English, None English, None English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Optimum

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Audio commentary by Tom Charity, Mike Ferris and Bo Harwood
• Audio interview with John Cassavates by Michel Ciment in Berlin 1978 (33:00)
• 36 page booklet with articles and interviews

DVD Release Date: September 12, 2005
Digipack Box

Chapters 20

Release Information:
Studio: Pioneer

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33

Edition Details:
• Liner Notes with essay by Ray Carney
 

DVD Release Date: March 24th, 1998
Keep case

Chapters 11

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.82:1

Edition Details:
• Gena Rowlands and Ben Gazzara Interview (22:37)
• Al Ruban Interview (7:49)
• Cassavetes Audio Interview (29:21)
• Theatrical Trailer (4:45)
 

DVD Release Date: September 21st, 2004
Digipack Box

Chapters 28

Release Information:
Studio:
BFI

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 44,372,158,637 bytes

Feature: 43,560,904,704 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 35.00 Mbps

 

Edition Details:
• 
Audio commentary by Tom Charity, Mike Ferris and Bo Harwood
• Memories of John (29:02, DVD only)
• Falk on Cassavetes: The later years (13:56, DVD only)
• Fully illustrated booklet featuring interviews and essays from Tom Charity, Al Ruban and Peter Bogdanovich

Enclosed PAL DVD (2:18:09)

Blu-ray Release Date:
May 27th, 2013
Custom Blu-ray Case

Chapters 12

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion

Aspect Ratio: 1.82:1

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 49,047,238,490 bytes

Feature: 38,943,086,592 bytes

Video Bitrate: 31.98 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:
• Gena Rowlands and Ben Gazzara Interview (22:37)
• Al Ruban Interview (7:49)
• Cassavetes Audio Interview from the 70s (29:21)
• Theatrical Trailer (4:45)
 

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22nd, 2013
Custom
Blu-ray package
Chapters: 28

 

Comments

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were ripped directly from the Blu-ray disc.

 

ADDITION: Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray (September 2013): Of the five films (Shadows, Faces, A Woman Under the Influence, The Killing of a Chinese Bookie, Opening Night) this shows the most variances from the BFI Blu-ray release of earlier this year. The BFI skin tones are much cooler. Are the Criterion warmer skin tones more accurate? I have no idea but either way I would not consider this a deal-breaker. Some may feel the Criterion faces are too red. Criterion's colors are bolder - much akin to their SD transfer. I think it looks super. LPCM audio, English subtitles and a duplicate of the 2004 DVD supplements. I envy those who will be seeing these films for the first time... in HD.  

 

***

 

ADDITION: BFI - Region 'B' Blu-ray - May 2013': A magnificent transfer on the new 1080P BFI. The higher resolution advances the detail and the visuals show some instances of depth. There is a shade of background grain. The 2.5 hour film is housed on a dual-layered disc and has a max'ed out bitrate. It supports the colors of the Criterion/Optimum SD transfer with the true skin tones, but contrast rises notably improving the image. In toggling back and forth with the Criterion DVD - it is quite a visible difference. The BFI is clean and provides a marvelous video presentation.

The audio is via a linear PCM 2.0 channel track at 1536 kbps. Likewise it has no flaws and comes through a bit crisper with a touch of depth. There are optional subtitles.

The Blu-ray offers a commentary by Tom Charity, Mike Ferris and Bo Harwood and the included PAL DVD has the feature (commentary) and two video pieces; 1/2 hour Memories of John - conversation Al with Ruban and Peter Falk reminiscing about Cassavetes. Falk on Cassavetes: The later years runs for 15-minutes and there is a fully illustrated booklet featuring interviews and essays from Tom Charity, Al Ruban and Peter Bogdanovich.

I've never enjoyed Opening Night so much as I did on this BFI Blu-ray. The film really jumps to life in 1080P with the vérité aspects seeming all that more embracing. We can certainly recommend this package.  

***

ON THE DVDs: We disregard the early Pioneer disc. It is Open Matte. It has boosting but is not fatally poor (well, not as bad as the others). No digital extras but the included liner notes essay by Ray Carney is, again, excellent.

In this case the Optimum looks minutely sharper than the Criterion. Colors seem exactly the same, but at times the Criterion is marginally brighter and has a glossy appearance. It's pretty close though. Criterion has removable subs, the Optimum doesn't. Obviously those sensitive to PAL speed-up will have this as an issue in the Optimum. Optimum has the superior extras edging convincingly ahead with the commentary. 

-Gary Tooze

 


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

Check out more in "The Library"


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


 

 

 

BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

 

BFI DVD (included in the Blu-ray  package)

 

Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 


 

CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE BELOW TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

Screen Captures

 

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

2) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Criterion (John Cassavetes: Five Films) - 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) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Criterion (John Cassavetes: Five Films) - 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) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Criterion (John Cassavetes: Five Films) - 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) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Criterion (John Cassavetes: Five Films) - 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) Pioneer - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Criterion (John Cassavetes: Five Films) - 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

 


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

Check out more in "The Library"


Hit Counter


 
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

Pioneer
Region 0 - NTSC
Criterion
Region 0 - NTSC
BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray Criterion Collection - Spine #255
Region 'A' - Blu-ray




 

 

DONATIONS Keep DVDBeaver alive:

 CLICK PayPal logo to donate!

Gary Tooze

Thank You!!