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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Zorba the Greek aka Alexis Zorbas [Blu-ray]


(Mihalis Kakogiannis, 1964)



Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: Twentieth Century Fox

Video: Fox Video



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

Runtime: 2:22:09.521

Disc Size: 44,535,219,838 bytes

Feature Size: 38,010,753,024 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.76 Mbps

Chapters: 29

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: June 5th, 2012



Aspect ratio: 1.66:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



DTS-HD Master Audio English 1078 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1078 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentary: Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Dolby Digital Audio Czech 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio French 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio French 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio German 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Hungarian 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Italian 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Portuguese 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Spanish 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio Spanish 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps



English (SDH), English, Czech, Danish , Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Italian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, none



• Commentary by director Michael Cacoyannis and Demetrios Liappas

• Biography: Anthony Quinn Lust for Life (44:18)

• Alternate Intro (4:09)

• Two Fox MovieTone news (6:32)

Trailers and TV Spots (4:48)





Description: Nominated for seven Academy Awardsr - including Best Picture - and Winner of three. In the role he was born to play, Oscarr Winner Anthony Quinn lights up the screen as Zorba, the lovable rogue with an insatiable lust for life. When shy Englishman, Basil (Alan Bates), lands on the Isle of Crete seeking his fortune, Zorba sets out to teach him the ways of the world...Zorba's world. Through it all, Basil learns there's only one way to deal with life's triumphs and tragedies - never stop dancing!



The Film:

The story finds a blocked English writer named Basil (Alan Bates) arriving on Crete to check on a lignite mine he has inherited, but he is really on a journey of self-discovery. He is befriended by Zorba, a larger-than-life, big-hearted Greek laborer who shows Basil the ways of the world. Basil is drawn to a beautiful widow (Irene Papas) who has made herself unapproachable to the other men in the village, while Zorba kindles a romance with Mme. Hortense (Lila Kedrova), an aging French courtesan who runs a small hotel and is the ex-mistress of four admirals.

Excerpt from TCM located HERE

If ever there was a role that Anthony Quinn was born to play, it was the lusty, life-affirming title character in Zorba... the Greek. The scene is the isle of Crete, where English writer Alan Bates arrives in the hopes of realigning his own values and outlook on life. He is "adopted" by the flamboyant Zorba, who determines to educate Bates in the ways of the world-or, to be more precise, Zorba's world. Along the way, Bates is introduced to widow Irene Papas, the unrequited love object of everyone on the island, who comes to a tragic end when she is accused of adultery. The writer is also a spectator to the equally benighted romance between Zorba and venerable courtesan Lila Kedrova. Other disasters follow, but Zorba is able to convince Bates that failure is an inescapable part of life, and that only by constantly tasting defeat can one truly enjoy life's victories. Based on the novel by Nikos Kazantzakis, Zorba the Greek earned Oscars for actress Lila Kedrova, cinematographer Walter Lassally and art director Vassilis Fotopoulos .

Excerpt from MRQE located HERE

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

Zorba the Greek looks sweeeet on Blu-ray from Fox. The image quality is very strong with impressively layered contrast.  There is depth and excellent detail. This is dual-layered with a high bitrate. This Blu-ray image is highly remarkable.  There is no noise on the 1.66:1 framed visuals. There is a touch of thickness and texture. This Blu-ray probably looks very much like the film Zorba the Greek and I can't find any notable flaws. This 1080P is a winner through and through.



















Audio :

Fox remain faithful to the original production with a DTS-HD Master mono track at 1078 kbps. It sounds authentically flat but some depth creeps into the soundstage. The original music by Mikis Theodorakis supports the film beautifully and sounds rich in uncompressed. . My Momitsu has identified it as being a region FREE disc playable on Blu-ray machines worldwide.


Extras :

Extras duplicate the Studio Classics DVD with the commentary by director Michael Cacoyannis and Demetrios Liappas (L.A. director for centre for modern Greek studies) recorded separately and is worthwhile with some details about the production and the book. Also included is the 45-minute A&E Biography of Anthony Quinn “A Lust for Life” which is a great addition. There is also the alt-intro, Two Fox MovieTone news reels and some trailers and TV spots.



Zorba the Greek is a wonderful film and I am very pleased that Fox have treated us to a stupendous a/v presentation. This is a warm, human film with an iconic performance from Quinn. I am very high on this Blu-ray. A timeless film in a sterling film-like offering. Strongly recommended! 

Gary Tooze

May 31st, 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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