(aka "The Gospel According to Saint Matthew" or "L' Évangile selon saint Matthieu")

 

directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini
Italy 1964

 

"Pasolini created the most enduring expression of the story of Jesus yet seen on the screen, before or since. 'The Gospel According to St. Matthew" makes any other representation on the medium of film seem like a pale and poor imitation. Perfect in so many senses that the director still had time to include his own political sensibilities into his marvelous visage of Christ. The acting was excellent, as is was the casting and the limited use of camera angles and effects shows a sparing humility to the ode this film was obviously paying homage to. How this same guy made 'Salo' is beyond me. The choice of music, although questionable by some, seems the pin-point counter balance juxtaposing the onscreen events... Odetta (not Billie Holliday - thanks Dominic) to Bach. It all works like an extreme expression of love overflowing onto your awestruck gaze. This film may not be perfect in others eyes, but it was in mine. "

Gary W. Tooze

The Tartan is on the TOP 100 List of DVDs.

Posters

Theatrical Release Date: September 4th, 1964 - Venice Film Festival

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Recommended Books on Italian Cinema (CLICK COVERS or TITLES for more information)

 

DVD Comparison:

GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée) - Region 2 - PAL vs. Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL vs. . Water Bearer Films - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Tartan Video - Region 2 - PAL vs. Out of Print Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC

BIG Thanks toVincent BOUCHÉ and Enrique B Chamorro for the Image Entertainment Screen Caps !

(GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée) - Region 2 - PAL - LEFT vs. Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)

DVD Box Covers

 

 

 

Distribution

GCTHV

Region 2 - PAL

Kinowelt / Arthaus 
Region 2- PAL

Runtime 02:11:1 (4% PAL speedup) 2:09:24 (4% PAL Speedup)
Video

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.67 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

1.85:1.00 Letterboxed WideScreen

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 7.27 mb/s
PAL 720X 25.00 f/s

(Water Bearer Region 0 - NTSC LEFT vs.Tartan Region 2 - PAL MIDDLE vs. Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - RIGHT)

DVD Box Covers

 

 

 

 

     (OOP )

 

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Distribution

Water Bearer Films

Region 0 - NTSC

Tartan Video

Region 2 - PAL

Image Entertainment 
Region 0 - NTSC
Runtime 2:16:55 2:11:04 (4% PAL Speedup) 2:17:00
Video 1.66:1.00 Letterboxed WideScreen
Average Bitrate: 6.2
NTSC 704x480 29.97 f/s

1.85:1.00 Letterboxed WideScreen / 16X9
Average Bitrate: 4.16 mb/s
PAL 720X 25.00 f/s

1.85:1.00 Letterboxed WideScreen
Average Bitrate: 4.22
NTSC 704x480 29.97 f/s

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

Bitrate:

GCTSHV

 

Bitrate:

Kinowelt

 

Bitrate:

Waterbearer

 

Bitrate:

Tartan

 

Bitrate:

Image

(GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée)  vs. Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL vs. - Region 2 - PAL vs. Water Bearer Films - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Tartan Video - Region 2 - PAL vs. Out of Print Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC)

  Gaumont Kinowelt Water Bearer Tartan Image Entertainment
Audio Italian  Dolby Digital 1.0 and DUB: French Dolby Digital 1.0 Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono) , DUB: German (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono) Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)  Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono) 

Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono) 

Subtitles French, none German, none English (burnt-in) English (non-removable) English (burnt-in)
Features Release Information:
Studio: GCTHV

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• "Pasolini, un religieux sans foi" featurette (10')
• "Pasolini face à l'Eglise romaine" featurette (15')
• "Un Christ à Cadaquès" featurette (22")
• Theatrical Trailer
• Comes with a 16-page booklet including photos and notes

DVD Release Date: October 28th, 2003
Amaray with carboard slipcover

Chapters 16

 

Release Information:

Studio: Kinowelt / Arthaus

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio - 1.85:1- anamorphic

 

Edition Details:

  • Film Notes
  • 13 slides
  • Trailer

DVD Release Date:  November 2nd, 2004
Keep Case
Chapters: 18

 

Release Information:
Studio: Water Bearer Films

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterbox - 1.66:1

Edition Details:

  • Short Documentary - "Pier Paolo Pasolini : A Film maker's Life" (28:59)
  • Non removable English sub-titles

DVD Release Date:  July 22nd, 2003
Keep Case
Chapters: 1

Release Information:
Production Company: Tartan Video

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio - 1.85:1- anamorphic


Edition Details:

  • 5 pages static David Parkinson

  • film notes...

  • Filmographies of  Director

  • Pasolini and two actors
  • Non removable English sub-titles

DVD Release Date:  September 23rd, 2002
Transparent Keep Case
Chapters: 16

Release Information:

Studio: Image Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterbox - 1.85:1

DVD Release Date:  February 23, 1999
Snapper Case
Chapters: 10

Comments:

ADDITION- GCTHV (France) + Kinowelt (German) - both region 2- PAL - January 2005 - Okay, before we get started - both French and German editions do NOT have English subtitles, which will remove them from consideration immediately for many. It should also be noted that because of the complexity of obtaining information for this comparison we were not able to ensure that all screen captures are matching frames, but our contributors did the best they can and have adhered to our standards of technical generation of those images. We apologize that there are some minor discrepancies in exact frames. We are fairly certain the first and last set of large captures are accurately imitated. Some points:

1) The Kinowelt image is the brightest, yet I cannot find example of digital boosting, but feel it MUST be there. Regardless I like this image very much - it looks exceptionally clean.

2) The Tartan has the best subtitles, although they are non-removable - an almost unforgivable mistake.

3) We can through the old Image Entertainment and Water Bearer out of contention as their image quality is far too poor - showing damage and looking to come from an analog source or having a very poor bitrate transfer. They both have burnt-in subtitles.

4)The Tartan and Gaumont look very similar in image quality with the Gaumont being slightly sharper.

5) The Kinowelt has consistent damage on the left edge.

6) All editions are cropped to varying degrees.

Final comments: As with our Persona comparison, I am uncharacteristically going with the brighter image. This is very rare as, in almost every case of a brighter image, it has digital manipulation in the form of brightness/contrast boosting. Defending myself here, I still suspect that the Gaumont is the most accurate image, but I figured why not indulge myself and admit I like the brighter better in this case, especially since neither have English subtitles - and it doesn't matter to most surfers to this page. Bottom line about image: the Gaumont is better, but I prefer the Kinowelt. This comparison on DVDDuel will bear that out - CLICK HERE.

The film is so important in cinema in general, that it is hard to believe that there is not an edition with removable English subtitles in existence. We still rate the Tartan - but lets have some extras and removable subtitles. Where the heck is Criterion?

NOTE: The Water Bearer has a good documentary as an extra.

******

The print for the Water Bearer version is from "The Pier Paolo Pasolini Foundation, Rome" as stated on the back of the Water Bearer DVD case. It shows a lot of good film grain, but I do notice the contrast level flickers and some damage, although less than the Image Entertainment DVD. I am also disappointed that no distributor has yet put in removable subs. Compared to the Tartan PAL DVD the subs are very poor and the picture quality is inferior. The Tartan is cropped on the top and bottom but the Water Bearer is cropped on both sides, which you notice very much at the opening credits as they unreadable. The sound is also poor on the Water Bearer. It does however show that the Image Entertainment disc has had manipulation on the aspect ratio.

The Image Entertainment has compressed the aspect ratio so that everyone looks squished. There is visible print damage in spots on the Out Of Print Image Entertainment disc. We can now verify some issues of aspect ratio and cropping while looking at the Water Bearer print. The Tartan disc has some visible digital manipulation and has taken some grain from the original image. It also has some contrast boosting. There are no excessive scratches or dirt on either the Tartan or Water Bearer print. Although hazy at times, the quality of both are still much better than the  'Out of Print' version. There is no longer a reason to pay an arm and a leg on EBay for the Image Disc in Region 1 now that Water Bearer have put this out.

The Tartan is softer and cropped, so although I am unhappy with the current state of this film on DVD I will go with the Tartan for strictly the clearity of the image for now. the Water Bearer has a nice documentary on Pasolini. The subs on the Water Bearer are very poor and look to be duplicates of the Image release probably meaning they used the same print. This is a tough call... but I am glad I own both Tartan and Water Bearer ( for the doc).    

- Gary W. Tooze





DVD Menus

 

(GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée) - Region 2 - PAL - LEFT vs. Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)

 


(
Water Bearer Region 0 - NTSC LEFT vs.Tartan Region 2 - PAL MIDDLE vs. Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - RIGHT)


 


Screen Captures

 

(GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs.  Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL - 2nd vs. Water Bearer Region 0 - NTSC 3rd vs. Tartan Region 2 - PAL 4th vs. Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - BOTTOM)



(GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs.  Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL - 2nd vs. Water Bearer Region 0 - NTSC 3rd vs. Tartan Region 2 - PAL 4th vs. Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - BOTTOM)

NOTE Print Damage on Image Entertainment Disc


(GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs.  Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL - 2nd vs. Water Bearer Region 0 - NTSC 3rd vs. Tartan Region 2 - PAL 4th vs. Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - BOTTOM)


(GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs.  Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL - 2nd vs. Water Bearer Region 0 - NTSC 3rd vs. Tartan Region 2 - PAL 4th vs. Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - BOTTOM)


(GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs.  Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL - 2nd vs. Water Bearer Region 0 - NTSC 3rd vs. Tartan Region 2 - PAL 4th vs. Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - BOTTOM)


(GCTHV (Edition Collector Numérotée) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs.  Kinowelt / Arthaus (Germany) - Region 2 - PAL - 2nd vs. Water Bearer Region 0 - NTSC 3rd vs. Tartan Region 2 - PAL 4th vs. Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - BOTTOM)

 

Hit Counter

 

Report Card:

Image:

Kinowelt

Sound:

-

Extras:

Water Bearer

Menu:

Kinowelt

DVD Box Covers

 

 

 

Distribution

GCTHV

Region 2 - PAL

Kinowelt / Arthaus 
Region 2- PAL

 

DVD Box Covers

 

 

 

 

 

 

     (OOP )

 

NOTE: Purchases through DVDBeaver's links to Amazon help keep us afloat and advertisement free!

Distribution

Water Bearer Films

Region 0 - NTSC

Tartan Video

Region 2 - PAL

Image Entertainment 
Region 0 - NTSC

 

 

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Gary Tooze

Many Thanks...