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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Hour of the Wolf" )

 

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/bergman.htm
Sweden 1968

 

The strangest and most disturbing of the films Ingmar Bergman shot on the island of Fårö, Hour of the Wolf stars Max von Sydow as a haunted painter living in voluntary exile with his wife (Liv Ullmann). When the couple are invited to a nearby castle for dinner, things start to go wrong with a vengeance, as a coven of sinister aristocrats hastens the artist’s psychological deterioration. This gripping film is charged with a nightmarish power rare in the Bergman canon, and contains dreamlike effects that brilliantly underscore the tale’s horrific elements.

***

Twenty-two years ago (Crisis) Bergman was telling the story of a man torn between two women; ten years ago (The Face) he was showing a performer being stripped of his mask, and five years ago (The Silence) he was revealing a single human coin by the examination of both its sides. All these were present in Persona, and they recur again in Hour of the Wolf, augmented on the immediate visual level by such familiar Bergman phrases as the bleached flashback (Sawdust and Tinsel), the errant eyeball (The Face), and the corpse that rises laughing from its slab (Wild Strawberries). Yet there are new departures, too—the dizzying revolve by Nykvist's camera around the dinner-table, the hideous ambivalence of the murder scene, the startling levitation of the Baron (a joke that is delicately capped by von Sydow's nervous glance at the ceiling as he hurries on his way), the jump-cuts with the firing of the gun, the rapturous Lester-style burst of sunlight on the lens as Veronica flings herself into her lover's arms. 'Awful things can happen,' she murmurs. 'Dreams can be revealed.' Nightmares as well, it seems. In the hour before dawn, Bergman's imagination remains the finest, and the most disturbing, of all the cinema's modern visionaries.

Excerpt of review from Excerpt from Philip Strick's Review in Sight & Sound located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: February 19th, 1968

Reviews                                                                  More Reviews                                                            DVD Reviews

 

Comparison:

MGM (Special Edition) - Region 1 - NTSC vs. MGM - Region 2 - PAL vs. Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Per-Olof Strandberg for the Region one Screen Caps and Stan Czarnecki for the review!

1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT

2) MGM - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

Box Covers

 

 

 

Distribution

MGM

Region 1 - NTSC

MGM
Region 2 - PAL
Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:27:24 1:23:48 (4% PAL speedup) 1:28:14.0804
Video

1:1.33 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 7,81 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.73 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

1.37:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-rays

Disc One: 49,940,047,586 bytes

Feature: 23,680,260,096 bytes

Video Bitrate: 31.83 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate:

 

MGM

 

Bitrate:

 

MGM

 

Bitrate:

 

Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

Audio Swedish (Dolby Digital 2.0)

Swedish, DUB: Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0)

LPCM Audio Swedish 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit
Subtitles English, Spanish, French, None English, Dutch, Greek, Rumanian, Italian, none English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: MGM

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1:1.33

Edition Details:
• Audio commentary by Marc Gervais
• Featurette (26:11)
• Interview with Liv Ullmann (2:55)
• Interview with Erland Josephson (3:35)
• Trailer (2:11 / 4:3 / 1:1.66)
• Photo Galleries
• DVD-9

DVD Release Date: April 20, 2004
Keep Case

Chapters 20

Release Information:
Studio: MGM

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:

DVD Release Date: August 2nd, 2004
Keep Case

Chapters 16

Release Information:
Studio:
Criterion

 

1.37:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-rays

Disc One: 49,940,047,586 bytes

Feature: 23,680,260,096 bytes

Video Bitrate: 31.83 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• shares the Blu-ray Disc with From the Life of the Marionettes


Blu-ray Release Date: November 20th, 2018
Transparent Blu-ray Case

Chapters 17

 

 

Comments

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

The Criterion Blu-ray of Hour of the Wolf is part of their Ingmar Bergman’s Cinema 100th Anniversary 30 Blu-ray Boxset (reviewed, as a work in-progress, HERE). Hour of the Wolf shares this Blu-ray with From the Life of the Marionettes. See comparative captures, a listing of technical details, extras etc., on this page.

***

ADDITION: Region 1- May 08': I can't find any reason why someone should buy the PAL version of this particular DVD. If you are Region 2-locked and don't have a multi-region player, it's time to purchase one. The R1 version is vastly sharper and has superior contrast. The R1 disc is a little bit cropped on the top of the image. On capture # 6 it's quite noticeable, especially when at the same time the R1 has more information at the bottom.

MGM did the first printing of this DVD in a mistake cropped to 1:1.66 from 1:1.37. MGM did replace the DVD in correct OAR (1:1.33) when DVDBeaver brought it to their attention (see HERE). For that reason, the the film clips on the extra material is in the wrong OAR, and presented in 1:1.66.

 - Per-Olof Strandberg

ON THE PAL EDITION: A fine, but somewhat disappointing release by MGM. The image, though, is very satisfying. The contrast is always apt. Bergman experimented a lot with contrast in this period of his career, so there are scenes which are intentionally very dark (Ullmann and Sydow's conversations in the cottage at night), as well as scenes with perfectly balanced contrast (the dinner party) or sequences with a very strong contrast (the murder by the lake). The black and white image is also very crisp and sharp, displays a moderate amount of grain and has no digital noise whatsoever. So there's really nothing to complain about.

The audio is pretty flawless as well. The soundtrack is always clear and audible and Bergman's extraordinary audio effects sound very strong.

Alas, this British disc has been deprived of all the bonus material of the R1 release. The commentary, documentary and interviews that fill the dual-layered US disc are totally absent from this single-layered release. But if you don't mind that, then this very inexpensive, but image- and audio-wise great DVD of one of Bergman's greatest films is the way to go.

 - Stan Czarnecki


DVD Menus
(
MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT vs. MGM - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)
 

 

 

 

 

Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 


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

 

Screen Captures

 

1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) MGM - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) MGM - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) MGM - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) MGM - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) MGM - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) MGM - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) MGM - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE

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

 

 


 

Report Card:

 

Image:

Blu-ray

Sound:

Blu-ray

Extras: Blu-ray

 
Box Covers

 

 

 

Distribution

MGM

Region 1 - NTSC

MGM
Region 2 - PAL
Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray




 

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