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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

The Organizer aka I compagni [Blu-ray]


(Mario Monicelli, 1963)



Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: Lux Film

Video: Criterion Collection Spine # 610



Region: 'A' (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 2:10:00.834

Disc Size: 41,442,768,821 bytes

Feature Size: 38,113,990,656 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.99 Mbps

Chapters: 26

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: April 24th, 2012



Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



LPCM Audio Italian 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit



English (SDH), none



• Introduction by director Mario Monicelli from 2006
• Trailer
• PLUS: An essay by film critic J. Hoberman





Description: In turn-of-the-twentieth-century Turin, an accident in a textile factory incites workers to stage a walkout. But it’s not until they receive unexpected aid from a traveling professor (Marcello Mastroianni) that they find their voice, unite, and stand up for themselves. This historical drama by Mario Monicelli, brimming with humor and honesty, is a beautiful and moving ode to the power of the people, and features engaging, naturalistic performances; cinematography by the great Giuseppe Rotunno; and a multilayered, Oscar-nominated screenplay by Monicelli, Agenore Incrocci, and Furio Scarpelli.



The Film:

Marcello Mastroianni in one of his best roles, as a late-19th-century labor leader orchestrating a strike at a Turin textile plant. Directed by Mario Monicelli (Big Deal on Madonna Street) with an exquisite handling of period, this powerful film had a sizable impact when it came out in 1963, though it?s been curiously neglected ever since. Arguably one of the great Italian films of the 60s, it cries out for rediscovery.

Excerpt from Jonathan Rosenbaum at the Chicago Reader located HERE

Surpassing my expectations, at least, this simple social drama turns out to be engrossingly human, compassionate and humorous. It is an account full of character of a pathetically primitive effort by a group of factory workers to better their lot (which is awful), with the help and encouragement of a vagrant school teacher who seems to have had a little experience with the technique of the strike.

Excerpt from Bosley Crowther at the NY Times located HERE

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

The Organizer is a visually beautiful film and the Criterion Blu-ray exports a wonderful presentation.  The image shows some grit and grain but it is not overwhelming. Black levels dominate but we never reach moiring status.  This is dual-layered a with a lofty bitrate and contrast is multi-layered. This Blu-ray has a wonderful consistency and there are some magnificent shots that stick out like fine vintage photography that you might see in a 'Life' magazine.  As a representation of the original - I doubt this is very far from the theatrical appearance.















Audio :

No boost going on here - the audio is equally as consistent utilizing a linear PCM mono in the original Italian at 1152 kbps. Sounds clean and clear. The original music by Carlo Rustichelli easily sets or breaks moods and it holds some surprising depth - all things considered. There are optional English subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked Blu-ray disc.


Extras :

A shade lean on the supplements with only an introduction by director Mario Monicelli from 2006, a trailer plus the liner notes booklet with an essay by film critic J. Hoberman. It's a straightforward film with some political relevance but I doubt a commentary discussion would have been required for bolstering appreciation any further.



Really nicely made film. Monicell shows an important humanist side without ramming it down your throat. The film sparkles with solid characters and I thoroughly enjoyed my viewing experience. It would be hard to deny this is anything but a masterpiece. I'd certainly recommend seeing this via the Criterion Blu-ray as the high resolution brings out so much of the cinematographic beauty. Warmly recommended! 

Gary Tooze

April 2nd, 2012



About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.

Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze






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