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Separate Tables [Blu-ray]
(Delbert Mann, 1958)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Hill-Hecht-Lancaster Productions
Video: Kino Lorber
Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 24,595,148,197 bytes
Feature Size: 24,038,608,896 bytes
Video Bitrate: 26.98 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: July 29th, 2014
Aspect ratio: 1.66:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 1612 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1612 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio English 1629 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1629 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
• Commentary by director Delbert Mann
• Trailer (2:27)
Description: Travel to the Beauregard Hotel where the eccentric guests all share one common trait - loneliness. There's Major Pollack (David Niven), who hides a dark secret behind a polished military veneer; Sibyl Railton-Bell (Deborah Kerr), a shy, neurotic old maid who lacks the courage to break away from her domineering mother; John Malcolm (Burt Lancaster), a disenchanted writer who drowns his bitterness in a pool of alcohol; and Ann Shankland (Rita Hayworth), whose narcissism masks a deep fear of growing old alone and unloved. In one emotional evening, these four unhappy misfits will bare their innermost secrets… and change each other's lives forever. Winner of 2 Academy Awards® for Best Actor (Niven) and Best Supporting Actress (Wendy Hiller). Nominated for 5 more Academy Awards® including Best Picture, Best Actress (Kerr) and Best Adapted Screenplay (Terrence Rattigan and John Gay).
This is adult, intelligent stuff, marvelously shaded by the amalgamation of talents. That Niven and Hiller are sublime is almost to be expected. But one watches Hayworth with genuine surprise, as the poignant divorcee watching her beauty slip away. This kind of part is usually the province of Englishwomen--Vivien Leigh, for example. It's the only strong mature role she ever got to play. Lancaster, cast against two women whose talents have an air of gentility, is able to tone down his trademark bravura. Besides Miss Kerr, wouldn't it have been lovely to have been spared Vic Damone's insistent croon over the opening credits?
Based on Terence Rattigan's play, Separate Tables is about a number of characters and their adventures at a British seaside hotel. Among the guests are an alleged war hero (David Niven), a timid spinster (Deborah Kerr) and her domineering mother (Gladys Cooper), and a divorced couple (Burt Lancaster, Rita Hayworth) trying to re-ignite their romance despite the presence of his mistress (Wendy Hiller). All of the characters' lives become intertwined in the course of the film as the story examines love affairs and secrets. Separate Tables is a fine, textured drama, filled with terrific performances and was nominated for several Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actress (Deborah Kerr), Best Actor (David Niven), Best Supporting Actress (Wendy Hiller), Best Screenplay From Another Medium, Best Cinematography and Best Music. Niven and Hiller won Oscars for the filmExcerpt from MRQE located HERE
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
Separate Tables has come to Blu-ray from Kino Lorber and it looks very solid. The image showcases some impressive contrast. There is single-layered with a supportive bitrate. The aspect ratio is 1.66:1 and the visuals are very clean and tight with pleasing black levels and layered grays. There is plenty of depth visible and textures are apparent. This Blu-ray provides a wonderful 1080P presentation - many steps above SD.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
Audio :There is a tad bit of weakness in the higher end but generally the audio was very pleasing. As you might guess the drama is almost exclusively dialogue driven with no extraneous action and few effects. Dialogue is crisp and very clear. There are optional English subtitles offered and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.
Included is the same commentary by Delbert Mann that was on the MGM's 2001 DVD. It's a decent one with some educational details (nice inclusion!). There is also a trailer.
July 17th, 2014
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.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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