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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "A Cop" or "Dirty Money" )

 

directed by Jean-Pierre Melville
France 1972

 

Jean-Pierre Melville's last film is far from his best, but it still presents some wonderfully executed noir (or should I say blue) moments. The opening heist scene is beautifully shot and executed, like all Melville heist scenes. The production budget was clearly quite restricted, with some very obvious studio backdrops in certain scenes. The second heist scene is a nail-biting twenty minutes of cinematic fun. They have twenty minutes to execute it, and Melville shoots it in real time, heightening the sense of anxiety. The helicopter and train are clearly miniatures in many shots, but the primitive special effects do not distract from the tension in the scene.

Alain Delon and Catherine Deneuve are both very good in their roles, exhibiting a type of icy calm throughout. Their roles are much more restricted than most of their other work, in part due to the lack of dialogue, but also because of the film's nature. The film is hit-and-miss, and is not as consistent as Le Samourai or Le Cercle Rouge, but it's worth seeing nonetheless if you're a Melville or a noir fan.

Eric Portelance

Posters

Theatrical Release: October 25th, 1972

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Comparison:

LionsGate - Region 1- NTSC vs. Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Optimum Home Entertainment - Region 2 - PAL vs. Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

Big thanks to Eric Portelance for the NTSC DVD caps and to Per-Olof Strandberg for the PAL DVD caps!

 

Box Cover

 

Distribution

LionsGate

Region 1 - NTSC 

Anchor Bay

Region 1 - NTSC 

Optimum Home Entertainment

Region 2 - PAL

Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:39:42       1:39:46 1:35:42 (4% PAL speedup) 1:40:04.331
Video

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.75 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.25 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1:1.85 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.18 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s
 

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 35,376,222,778 bytes

Feature: 28,214,710,272 bytes

Video Bitrate: 33.92 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate LionsGate:

Bitrate Anchor Bay:

Bitrate Optimum:

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio French (Dolby Digital 2.0)

French Dolby Digital 2.0s

French Dolby Digital 2.0

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1554 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1554 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles English, Spanish, None English, None English, None English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: LionsGate

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• none

DVD Release Date: July 22nd, 2008

Keep Case
Chapters
12

 

Release Information:
Studio: Anchor Bay

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Trailer
• Talent Bios

DVD Release Date: July 24th, 2001
Chapters 24

Release Information:
Studio: Optimum Home Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1:1.85

Edition Details:
• Trailer (4:13)
• DVD-5

DVD Release Date: June 25th, 2007
Keep Case

Chapters 12

Release Information:
Studio:
Kino

 

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 35,376,222,778 bytes

Feature: 28,214,710,272 bytes

Video Bitrate: 33.92 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

NEW Audio Commentary by Film Historian Samm Deighan
Interviews with Jean-Francois Delon (Alain's brother) and Florence Gabin (Jean's daughter) (25:50 / French with English subtitles)
In the Mood for Melville (58:00)
Theatrical Trailer (4:23)


Blu-ray Release Date:
November 19th, 2019
Standard Blu-ray Case

Chapters 9

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Kino Blu-ray (November 2019): Kino have transferred Jean-Pierre Melville's Un Flic to Blu-ray. It certainly looks tighter and seems to support the SD color schemes. It carries some heaviness and inherent softness, which is probably accurate, and looks superior to the DVDs with the higher resolution and more grain support. It is probably from the same Studio Canal source.

On their Blu-ray, Kino use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track (16-bit) in the original French language. It is another advancement in the film's audio and score by Michel Colombier (Barb Wire, Colossus: The Forbin Project, Une Chambre en Ville. Against All Odds) sounding a bit deeper with more consistent dialogue. Kino offer optional English subtitles on their Region 'A' Blu-ray.

Kino add another new audio commentary - this one by Film Historian Samm Deighan who I don't ever recall being unimpressed by her discussions. She again methodically discusses the film (Melville's last) initially addresses the opening quote and seeing details and providing analysis for the entire feature. Excellent. There are also interviews with Jean-Francois Delon (Alain's brother) and Florence Gabin (Jean's daughter) for 26-minutes - in French with English subtitles and the hour-long, 2017, documentary "In the Mood for Melville" directed by Benjamin Clavel. It has glowing input from Asian filmmakers (Tsui Hark, Alex Cheung, Hitoshi Yazaki, Kim Jee-woon and others) with interviews concerning Melville's esthetic of direction and fans will appreciate the information - in French and some English with English subtitles. Lastly, is a lengthy theatrical trailer.

Melville goes out with a bang and this is another excellent crime-drama. Un Flic has Jean-Pierre Melville's signature style - long scenes without dialogue, a heist, a melancholy atmosphere, a steely blue/grey appearance, strong male characters on both sides of the law, a club scene with dancing girls etc.. It's a film I am thrilled to own on Blu-ray. A very strong recommendation! 

Gary Tooze

ADDITION: LionsGate - Region 1 - NTSC DVD - July 08': Although this new NTSC edition takes up marginally more space on a single-layered disc (4.25 Gig) - there really is little difference in the image quality. This transfer is also provided by Studio Canal. 

I get the feeling though that these visuals could look exceptionally good if given to 1080P or even dual-layering on an SD. The audio is 2 channel, English subs are optional (along with Spanish). There are no extras.

The Anchor Bay is out-of-print and we suggest getting the most reasonably priced edition for the area you live. The Lionsgate seems like a very good deal at around $12. This is a great crime drama as Melville fans will already know!

Gary Tooze

***

ADDITION: OPTIMUM - PAL DVD - 06' - Both versions are provided from Studio Canal, and they are more or less identical. The Optimum has 3.82 GB, and the Anchor Bay 4.04 GB of space utilized for the film. The Optimum has a slightly heavier blue color timing (and brighter), that seems, to me, to be more accurate. The difference overall though is very minimal.

The Optimum could be a very good choice, as it seems that the Anchor Bay disc is currently OOP.

 - Per-Olof Strandberg

ON THE ANCHOR BAY DVD: The transfer has its occasional soft spots, but is quite sharp overall, and exhibits some nice film grain. The almost monochrome steely blue colors have been preserved throughout. I only have two gripes. The first is that there are a few moments during the film where some shots have clearly been taken from different elements, and there is a visible drop in image quality. The second is the occasional vignetting (darkening of the corners) visible, especially in the outdoor shots. This could have been caused by a wide angle lens during shooting, but it could just as well be due to decaying film elements. Having not seen a theatrical print of this, it's tough to say.

The disc is rather bare-bones, with the only extras being the theatrical trailer and talent bios for Melville and Delon. The transfer is still very good, and you should pick this up if you're a Melville fan.

 - Eric Portelance

 


LionsGate

 

Anchor Bay

Optimum Home Entertainment

Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


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

 

1) LionsGate - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC SECOND

3) Optimum Home Entertainment - Region 2 - PAL THIRD

4) Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) LionsGate - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC SECOND

3) Optimum Home Entertainment - Region 2 - PAL THIRD

4) Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) LionsGate - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC SECOND

3) Optimum Home Entertainment - Region 2 - PAL THIRD

4) Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) LionsGate - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC SECOND

3) Optimum Home Entertainment - Region 2 - PAL THIRD

4) Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) LionsGate - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC SECOND

3) Optimum Home Entertainment - Region 2 - PAL THIRD

4) Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) LionsGate - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Anchor Bay - Region 1 - NTSC SECOND

3) Optimum Home Entertainment - Region 2 - PAL THIRD

4) Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


More Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray Captures
 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

  

 

Box Cover

 

Distribution

LionsGate

Region 1 - NTSC 

Anchor Bay

Region 1 - NTSC 

Optimum Home Entertainment

Region 2 - PAL

Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

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Gary Tooze

Thank You!