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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Eden and After" or "Oltre L'Eden")

 

directed by Alain Robbe-Grillet
France/Czechoslovakia 1970

 

In the labyrinthine Eden Cafe where ads for Coca-Cola share wall space with living friezes of nude models and slogans like "Drink Blood" a group of French students play games of Russian Roulette, poisoning, and rape. The Dutchman (Pierre Zimmer) enters the scene and demonstrates a "trick" he learned in Africa in which he heals one of the students who he has asked to pick up pieces of broken glass. He gives fear powder (not cocaine because that's already on the menu as a beverage at the Eden Cafe) to Violette (Catherine Jourdan) and she imagines herself in Tunisia in a series of sadomasochistic vignettes with the Dutchman and her fellow students inhabiting various roles (characters playing multiple roles - including themselves as actors - is an element of several Robbe-Grillet films) suffering multiple deaths and Violette even encounters her own double. Like THE MAN WHO LIES before this, EDEN AND AFTER was a French/Czechoslovakian co-production but location shooting is in picturesque Tunisia in color with striking choices of contrasting colors in the set and costume design (as well as that vivid blood which always splashes across bright surfaces). According to Robbe-Grillet, it was partially inspired by De Sade's JUSTINE and Lewis Carroll's ALICE IN WONDERLAND. An alternate version played on French TV titled N TOOK THE DICE. The scenes were re-ordered and alternate takes were also utilized with their arrangement being determined by a throw of the dice. Shots from the film appeared in Robbe-Grillet's last film GRADIVA.

Eric Cotenas

Theatrical Release: 20 April 1970 (France)

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DVD Review: Ripley's Home Video - Region 2 - PAL

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

DVD Box Cover

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Distribution

Ripley's Home Video

Region 2 - PAL

Runtime 1:33:45 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

1.66:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 8.13 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

Audio French Dolby Digital 2.0 mono; Italian Dolby Digital 2.0 mono
Subtitles Italian, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Ripley's Home Video

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.66:1

Edition Details:
• Theatrical Trailer (16:9; 2:29)
• Interview with Alain Robbe-Grillet (16:9; 19:42; in French with Italian subtitles)

DVD Release Date: October 6th, 2009
Amaray

Chapters 16

 

Comments

Perhaps due to the inclusion of the Robbe-Grillet interview and possibly because this is a color film (unlike TRANS-EUROP-EXPRESS), Ripley's Home Video have afforded their HD-mastered transfer of EDEN AND AFTER a dual-layer encoding (the feature takes up 5.59 GB of the disc's 6.86 GB). The image does not seem to have undergone heavy digital manipulation. The grain is consistent and the detail good for a film of this age and budget.

 

The only extras are a French trailer and a 20 minute vintage interview with Robbe-Grillet in French with Italian subtitles. Camera Obscura have picked up the rights to the film and are promising a thoroughly English-friendly special edition (in keeping with their other releases such as TERROR EXPRESS and VASE DE NOCES) in the future which will likely (hopefully) use the same HD master.

  - Eric Cotenas

 



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DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Distribution

Ripley's Home Video

Region 2 - PAL

 

 




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