directed by David Mackenzie
UK / France 2003

 

The film is a kind of psychological thriller set in and around Glasgow in the early 1950s, a time of high employment and low wages. From the opening shots that give the landscape a cold, blue-tinged look and the plaintive David Byrne music that accompanies them, Young Adam catches the sad, desperate feeling of the times. It begins with the body of a young woman floating in the murky waters of the Clyde and fished out by two bargees, Les (Peter Mullan) and Joe (Ewan McGregor). Les is middle-aged, married to the resentful Ella and living with their seven-year-old son on a barge she owns called Atlantic Eve. Joe - handsome, taciturn, in his late 20s - lives with them, assisting Les in loading and unloading the cargoes they carry along the canals.

Mackenzie has a sure, visual touch and a mastery of cinematic language, at least in embryo. His movie resembles Lynne Ramsay and Terence Davies; it's a little like Richard Jobson's Sixteen Years of Alcohol and there are echoes of David Cronenberg's Spider, based on the Patrick McGrath novel, and Mackenzie is in fact now working on a version of McGrath's Asylum. He is a British film-maker to be proud of - and excited about.

Excerpt frpm Philip French's review at The Guardian located HERE

Poster

Theatrical Release: France 16 May 2003 (Cannes Film Festival), Canada September 2003 (Toronto Film Festival)

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

DVD Comparison:

Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL

Big thanks to Per-Olof Strandberg for the Warner (UK) Screen Caps!

(Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1- NTSC LEFT vs. Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)

DVD Box Covers

Distribution

Columbia Tri-Star

Region 1 - NTSC

Warner (UK)

Region 2 - PAL

Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision
Region 2 - PAL
Runtime 1:36:54 1:34:08 (4% PAL speedup) 1:33:40 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

2.35:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.64 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

2.35:1 Original Aspect Ratio

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

1.78:1 Aspect Ratio

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

Audio English (Dolby Digital 5.1) DUB: French (Dolby Digital 5.1) English (Dolby Digital 5.1, Dolby Digital 2.0)

English (Dolby Digital 5.1)

Subtitles French and None English, English HoH and None Finnish, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian and None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Columbia Tri-Star

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.35:1

Edition Details:
• Director Commentary
• Cast and Crew Commentary
• Extended Scene
• Ewan McGregor Narration (1:42)

DVD Release Date: September 14th, 2004
Keep Case

Chapters 28

Release Information:
Studio: Warner (UK)

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.35:1

Edition Details:
• The Making of Young Adam (7:53)
• Trailer (1:50 / 1:1.78)
• Cast and Crew Biographies
• Soundtrack by David Byrne (51:03)
• Ewan McGregor Narration (1:42)
• Feature commentary by David MacKenzie etc
• Audio Description
• DVD-9 (SS-DL)

DVD Release Date: March 29, 2004
Keep Case

Chapters 20

Release Information:
Studio: Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.78:1

Edition Details:
• The Making of Young Adam (7:53)
• Trailer (2:00)
• DVD-9 (SS-DL)

 

DVD Release Date: 12.01.2005
Keep Case

Chapters 18

 

 

Comments ADDITION (Columbia Tri-Star Region 1- NTSC - Sept 05'):

It has been stated elsewhere that the Region 1 DVD is cut. I don't know where unless it is the 'Extended scene' in the extras. According to the times it does look like it may have 20+ seconds missing - but that could be a logo so we are not 100% positive.

We tried our best to be as exact as we could on these caps and there are enough now that you can get a general idea of the differences. All three seem fairly acceptable in image quality and we will only focus on the Warner and Columbia due to the theatrical aspect ratio previously mentioned below. It looks to me like the Columbia is slightly brighter and quite possibly sharper. It is very hard to know for sure as differences are really negligible in terms of image - we lean slightly toward the NTSC.

Extras also give a nod the the Columbia with the second commentary (which I haven't gone through yet). The Columbia offers a French DUB, but no optional English subtitles (only French).

Bottom line is you will probably be happy with either the Warner or Columbia edition. Strong fans will want the NTSC for the extra commentary, but other than that buy the least expensive available to you. 

*****

Both editions are very strong and quite equal in picture quality. The big issue here is the picture framing. I believe that the film was shot with Super 35 equipment, that gives you a possibility to re-frame the picture for TV sets, without cropping. Unlike Open matte - where every picture is re-adjusted. This has been exhibited in cinemas as 2.35:1, so the UK disc is in the correct theatrical ratio. The Nordic disc has the credits sequence (until 2:16) cropped (#1), most likely, because it's the only material including the credits. When the credit sequence ends, the picture is reframed from the original material to fit 16:9 TV's, giving more picture information, than the OAR. The Nordic disc is therefore not a disaster, even though the original theatrical OAR is preferred.

The 28 seconds time difference in the editions is because the UK disc has the Warner logo in the beginning and the end.

The sounds are equal, but the UK disc contains also a 2.0 mix for standard television viewing.

NOTE 1
The Finnish disc is the same as in all the Nordic countries. When choosing the Danish version you get the Scanbox logo, choosing Swedish or Norwegian you get Sandrew Metronome as the distributor , and with Finnish you get Pan Vision.

NOTE 2
From IMDb about the R1 version:

• The UK version contains a sex scene featuring Ewan McGregor. The MPAA has cut it from the US release for 2004.

• The R-rated US video version removes a moment from the NC-17 theatrical cut where Ewan McGregor's character performs oral sex on Tilda Swinton's character, although the scene is presented whole in the DVD's bonus features.

So the UK edition is the preferred on and a clear winner with a lot of good extra-material.

 - Per-Olof Strandberg

 

 






DVD Menus

 

Columbia Tri-Star Region 1 - NTSC

 

 

 

 


(Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL - LEFT vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)


 

 


 

Screen Captures

(Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1- NTSC TOP vs. Warner (UK) - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 

DVD Box Covers

Distribution

Columbia Tri-Star

Region 1 - NTSC

Warner (UK)

Region 2 - PAL

Cinema Mondo / Pan Vision
Region 2 - PAL

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Report Card:

 

Image:

Columbia - NTSC for image but R2 Warner if R1 is cut

Sound:

Columbia - NTSC

Extras: Columbia - NTSC
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