directed by Bruno Nuytten
France 1988

 

The troubled life of French sculptor Camille Claudel and her long relationship with legendary sculptor Auguste Rodin are portrayed in this passionate biographical drama, featuring an acclaimed performance by Isabelle Adjani.

 

Beginning in the 1880s with a young Claudel's first meeting with Rodin, the film traces the development of their intense romantic bond. The... More growth of this relationship coincides with the rise of Claudel's career, helping her overcome prejudices against female artists. However, their romance soon sours, due to the increasing pressures of Rodin's fame and his love for another woman. These difficulties combine with her increasing doubts about the value of her work to drive Claudel into an emotional tumult that threatens to become insanity.

 

First-time director Bruno Nuytten had previously served as a cinematographer, and he brings this experience to bear in his loving presentation of Claudel's sculpture and the lavish period setting. The dramatic approach is in tune with the impressive visuals, which present Claudel's life as a grandiose melodrama, a transformation that irritated some critics. However, few questioned the film's value as a dramatic showcase for Adjani, whose fervent portrayal was rewarded with an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress.

Excerpt from Judd Blaise, All Movie Guider

Posters

Theatrical Release: France 7 December 1988

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DVD Comparison:

MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL

Big thanks to Per-Olof Strandberg for all the Screen Caps!

(MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)

DVD Box Covers

Distribution

MGM (Cut version)

Region 1 - NTSC

Optimum
Region 2 - PAL
Runtime 2:37:55 2:45:55 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

2.35:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.22 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

2.35:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.74 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

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

Bitrate:

 

MGM (Cut version)

 

Bitrate:

 

Optimum

 

Audio French (Dolby Digital 2.0)

French (Dolby Digital 2.0)

Subtitles English, French, Spanish, None English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: MGM (Cut version)

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterboxed - 2.35:1

Edition Details:
• None

DVD Release Date: 23 Jan 2001
Keep Case

Chapters 16
 

Release Information:
Studio: Optimum

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.35:1

Edition Details:
• Trailer (1:56/16:9)

 

DVD Release Date: 9 Jul 2007
Keep Case

Chapters 16

 

Comments:

Not too much to compare here! The MGM R1 disc from 2001 is incredibly weak beside the Optimum disc from 2007. Where Optimum shows details and depth, the picture in the MGM is blocked, with visible artifacts, looking almost like a VHS cassettes. The non-anamorphic MGM doesn't only have a bad image, the transfer is from a butchered US version of the film, that omits approx. 16 minutes of the running time. Many of the cuts are made in the last 40 minutes. There are not only missing some shots here and there, they also have edited in some long scenes from the end, that I felt were very important.

The Optimum disc is brightened to fit home viewing and there's extensive visible grain, but also some compression artifacts. The original film copy seems to be quite dark.

The only extra material on the Optimum disc is a trailer. The MGM doesn't even have that. A strong film, that deserves to be seen... in it's original cut!
Buy the Optimum!

 - Per-Olof Strandberg

 



DVD Menus


(
MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)
 

 


 

Screen Captures

(MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)
Subtitle sample - not exact frame

 

 


(MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(MGM (Cut version) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Optimum - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


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Image:

Optimum

Sound:

Optimum

Extras: Optimum
Menu: Optimum

 
DVD Box Covers

Distribution

MGM (Cut version)

Region 1 - NTSC

Optimum
Region 2 - PAL

 





 

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