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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

directed by Otto Preminger
U.S. 1959

 A virtuoso James Stewart plays a small-town Michigan lawyer who takes on a difficult case: the defense of a young army lieutenant (Ben Gazzara) accused of murdering a local tavern owner who he believes raped his wife (Lee Remick). This gripping envelope-pusher, the most popular film by Hollywood provocateur Otto Preminger, was groundbreaking for the frankness of its discussion of sex—but more than anything else, it is a striking depiction of the power of words. Featuring an outstanding supporting cast—with a young George C. Scott as a fiery prosecutor and the legendary attorney Joseph N. Welch as the judge—and an influential score by Duke Ellington, Anatomy of a Murder is an American movie landmark, nominated for seven Oscars, including best picture.

'***

Courtroom histrionics given sizzle and sex by Otto Preminger and Duke Ellington's jazz. Stewart shocked 1950s audiences with his gritty, quirky performance as a confirmed bachelor defense attorney speaking directly about contraceptives, pink panties and rape. Old pros Arden and O'Connell flawlessly support the star performance in a talky tennis game. Gazzarra as a brutal army stud and Remick as his duplicitous, sluttish wife received well-deserved career boosts for their efforts.
The casting of Remick was Preminger's major concern after Lana Turner left the project (actress reportedly slapped director who slapped her back) and Jayne Mansfield backed off from the script. Joseph Welch, who plays the judge, was the famed Army-McCarthy hearings lawyer who would go on to become a real life judge
.

Excerpt from TV Guide located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release Date: July 1st, 1959

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Comparison:

Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Columbia Tri-Star - Region 2/4 - PAL vs. Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Ole of DVDBasen for the R2/4 - PAL Screen Caps!

1) Columbia Tri-Star  R1 - NTSC - LEFT

2) Columbia Tri-Star x R2/4 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

Box Covers

Distribution

Columbia Tri-Star

Region 1  - NTSC

Columbia Tri-Star
Region 2/4 - PAL
Criterion - spine # 600
Region ' A' -
Blu-ray
Runtime 2:40:15 2:34:01 (4% PAL Speedup) 2:40:46.261
Video

1.37:1 as filmed in Open Matte
Average Bitrate: 5.44 mb/s
NTSC 704x480 29.97 f/s

1.85:1 Original Theatrical aspect ratio - 16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.46
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

1080P / 23.976 fps Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 45,914,701,438 bytes

Feature: 36,848,683,008 bytes

Video Bitrate: 22.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate:

Columbia Tri-Star Region 1

 

Bitrate:

Columbia Tri-Star Region 2/4

Bitrate:

Criterion Blu-ray

Audio English (Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono), French DUB (Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono), Spanish DUB (Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono)

English (Dolby Digital 1.0 Stereo), DUBS: French (Dolby Digital 1.0 Stereo), Spanish (Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono)

DTS-HD Master Audio English 3560 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 3560 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
LPCM Audio English 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit
Subtitles English, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Thai and none French, German, Italian, English, Spanish
Subtitles: Arabic, Bulgarian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Icelandic, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish and Turkish. and none
English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Columbia/Tri-star Studios - Region 1

Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen (Standard) - 1.37:1

Edition Details:
•  Photo Montage: "Anatomy of a Classic"
• Vintage Advertising
• Production Notes (in 4 page pamphlet)
• Talent Files
• Trailer (plus 2 bonus trailers)

 

DVD Release Date: July 11th, 2000
Keep Case

Chapters 28

Release Information:
Studio: Columbia/Tri-star Studios - Region 2/4

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen- 1.85:1 anamorphic

Edition Details:

• Photo Montage: "Anatomy of a Classic"
• Vintage Advertising
• Production Notes (in 4 page pamphlet)
• Talent Files
• Trailer (plus 2 bonus trailers)

DVD Release Date: August 2001
Keep Case

Chapters 28

Release Information:
Studio: C
riterion

 

1080P / 23.976 fps Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 45,914,701,438 bytes

Feature: 36,848,683,008 bytes

Video Bitrate: 22.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Edition Details:
• New interview with Otto Preminger biographer Foster Hirsch (29:45)
• Critic Gary Giddins explores Duke Ellington’s score in a new interview (21:47)
• A look at the relationship between graphic designer Saul Bass and Preminger with Bass biographer Pat Kirkham (14:53)
• Newsreel footage from the set (5:02)
• Excerpts from a 1967 episode of Firing Line, featuring Preminger in discussion with William F. Buckley Jr. (10:41)
• Excerpts from the work in progress Anatomy of “Anatomy” (30:11)
• Behind-the-scenes photographs by Life magazine’s Gjon Mili
• Trailer, featuring on-set footage (4:50)
• Liner notes booklet featuring an essay by critic Nick Pinkerton and a 1959 Life magazine article on real-life lawyer Joseph N. Welch, who plays Judge Weaver in the film

Blu-ray Release Date: February 21st, 2012
Transparent Blu-ray Case

Chapters 18

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Criterion Collection - Region 'A' Blu-ray - February 12': Extremely impressive looking transfer from Criterion. Exceptional greyscale and black levels - bringing up detail another solid notch. We get more information in the side edges on the 1.85:1 aspect ratio (but, obviously, less on top and bottom from the 4:3 Open matte - TV version). The visuals show some consistent grain and overall there is a wonderful contrast balance on the pristine looking image. It supports a magnificent video presentation.

Criterion offer two audio options a linear PCM in original mono at a modest 1152 kbps. Also there is a more dynamic DTS-HD Master 5.1 surround track at a resounding 3560 kbps. There is some separation and depth is very apparent. The Duke Ellington score can be played alone - on a Sunday morning. Magnificent. Great to have the mono track for purists. This sounds fabulous. There are optional subtitles on the region 'A'-locked Blu-ray disc.       

Criterion have stacked the supplements - starting with a new (recorded 2011) 1/2-hour interview with Otto Preminger biographer Foster Hirsch (author of Otto Preminger: The Man Who Would Be King). Lots of good info. There is a 10-minute excerpt from a 1967 television episode of Firing Line, featuring Preminger in discussing censorship and the production code with host William F. Buckley Jr.  In a 2011, 20-minute, interview critic Gary Giddins explores Duke Ellington’s musical contributions to Anatomy of a Murder. Also recorded in 2011 is a video piece looking at the relationship between graphic designer Saul Bass and Preminger. It has Bass biographer Pat Kirkham (author of Saul Bass: A Life in Film and Design). There are 5-minuites of vintage newsreel footage from the set hyping the film. and a valuable 1/2-hour excerpt from the work in progress Anatomy of “Anatomy”. In 1997, Marquette County, Michigan resident Joan G. Hansen published her first account of the impact of Otto Preminger's film had in 1959 on the Upper Peninsula community were it was shot. For the past 10 years, filmmaker David C. Jones, Claire Wiley and John O'Grady have been working with Hansen on a documentary based on her experience. We get some cool 'Behind-the-scenes' photographs by Life magazine’s Gjon Mili, a lengthy trailer, featuring on-set footage and another liner notes booklet featuring an essay by critic Nick Pinkerton and a 1959 Life magazine article on real-life lawyer Joseph N. Welch, who plays Judge Weaver in the film.

A very easy recommendation - a Preminger masterpiece with an all-star cast - one of the best courtroom dramas ever made - now looking more film-like and impressive than ever before. The supplements offer important value and we have nothing to say but 'our strongest Blu-ray recommendation'. Bravo Criterion!

Gary W. Tooze


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(
Columbia Tri-Star  R1 - NTSC - LEFT vs. Columbia Tri-Star x R2/4 - PAL - RIGHT)

 

 

Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 


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Screen Captures

 

1) Columbia Tri-Star  R1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Columbia Tri-Star x R2/4 - PAL - MIDDLE

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



1) Columbia Tri-Star  R1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Columbia Tri-Star x R2/4 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 


1) Columbia Tri-Star  R1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Columbia Tri-Star x R2/4 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 


1) Columbia Tri-Star  R1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Columbia Tri-Star x R2/4 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 


1) Columbia Tri-Star  R1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Columbia Tri-Star x R2/4 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

 More Blu-ray Captures


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Blu-ray

Extras: Blu-ray

 
Box Covers

Distribution

Columbia Tri-Star

Region 1  - NTSC

Columbia Tri-Star
Region 2/4 - PAL
Criterion - spine # 600
Region ' A' -
Blu-ray




 

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