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(aka 'Black Irish' or 'Take This Woman' or 'The Girl from Shanghai')

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/welles.htm
USA 1947

 

Orson Welles (Citizen Kane, 1941) wrote, directed and starred in this treacherous tale of a sailor (Welles) hired to help a beautiful woman (Rita Hayworth) and her disabled lawyer husband (Everett Sloane) sail their private yacht from New York to San Francisco via the Panama Canal. On board, he is bribed to “fake” the murder of the lawyer’s partner (Glenn Anders), only to find himself trapped in a deadly game of cat and mouse. Welles created a scandal, and lots of publicity, by having his wife Hayworth’s trademark red locks cut short and bleached blonde for her role as a femme fatale, but the movie failed to score at the box office upon its release. Over time, critics have lavished praise on Welles’s uncommon vision, which culminates with the most elaborately staged of all film noir finales—the famous shootout in the hall of mirrors.

 

  Posters

Theatrical Release: December 24th, 1947

Reviews                                                                         More Reviews                                                                    DVD Reviews

 

Comparison:

Columbia Tri-Star - Region 1, 3, 4 - NTSC vs. TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray vs. TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray vs. Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 

1) Columbia Tri-Star - Regions 1,3,4 - NTSC - LEFT

2) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - SECOND

3) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - THIRD

4) Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - RIGHT

 

Box Covers

 

 

 

  

Distribution Columbia Tri-Star Home Video - Region 1, 3, 4 - NTSC TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:27:421 1:27:29.494 1:27:30.245 1:27:30.245
Video 1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.98 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

Disc Size: 16,446,007,713 bytes

Feature Size: 13,374,253,056 bytes

Average Bitrate: 19.00 Mbps

Single-layered Blu-ray VC-1 Video 1080P

Disc Size: 27,201,707,212 bytes

Feature Size: 20,844,865,536 bytes

Average Bitrate: 28.14 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC Video 1080P

Disc Size: 21,783,065,070 bytes

Feature Size: 21,725,939,712 bytes

Average Bitrate: 29.53 Mbps

Single-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC Video 1080P

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

Bitrate:

Bitrate: Original Blu-ray

Bitrate (***NEW Version***): Blu-ray

Bitrate Mill Creek Blu-ray

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0), DUBs: French (Dolby Digital 2.0), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0), Portuguese (Dolby Digital 2.0)  Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB
Commentary: Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB

Dolby TrueHD Audio English 570 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 570 kbps / 16-bit (AC3 Embedded: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -6dB)
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1809 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1809 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Subtitles English, French, Spanish, Thai, Portuguese, Chinese, Korean, None None None English, None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Columbia Tri-Star Home Video

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Audio Commentary by Peter Bogdanovich
• Featurette: A Conversation With Peter Bogdanovich (20:49)
• Talent Files (text screens)
• Trailers
• Vintage Advertising

DVD Release Date: October 3rd, 2000

Keep Case
Chapters: 28

Release Information:
Studio: TCM

Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1

Disc Size: 16,446,007,713 bytes

Feature Size: 13,374,253,056 bytes

Average Bitrate: 19.00 Mbps

Single-layered Blu-ray VC-1 Video 1080P

 

Edition Details:
• 
Peter Bogdanovich Commentary
• Introduction by Robert Osborne (2:37)

• NoirCast.Net Audio Podcast (30:00)
• Scene Stills (5:50)
• Movie Posters (1:40)
• Orson Welles Biography (text screens)
• Publicity Stills (6:49)
• Behind-the-Scenes Photos
• Lobby Card Set (1:30)
• TCMDb Articles.

DVD included in package

Blu-ray Release Date: January 27th, 2014
Standard Keep Case inside cardboard slipcase

Chapters 16

Release Information:
Studio: TCM

Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1

Disc Size: 27,201,707,212 bytes

Feature Size: 20,844,865,536 bytes

Average Bitrate: 28.14 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC Video 1080P

 

Edition Details:
• 
Peter Bogdanovich Commentary
• Introduction by Robert Osborne (2:37)

• NoirCast.Net Audio Podcast (30:00)
• Scene Stills (5:50)
• Movie Posters (1:40)
• Orson Welles Biography (text screens)
• Publicity Stills (6:49)
• Behind-the-Scenes Photos
• Lobby Card Set (1:30)
• TCMDb Articles.

Comments by Eddie Muller
• An Epic Noir Poem (2:33)
• Back Story (12:58)
• It's Film Noir Distilled (4:51)

DVD included in package

Blu-ray Release Date: June, 2014
Transparent DVD-sized Keep Case inside cardboard slipcase

Chapters 16

Release Information:
Studio: TCM

Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1

Disc Size: 21,783,065,070 bytes

Feature Size: 21,725,939,712 bytes

Average Bitrate: 29.53 Mbps

Single-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC Video 1080P

 

Edition Details:
• 
None

Blu-ray Release Date: March17th, 2015
Standard Keep Case

Chapters 6 

 

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - March 2015': Mill Creek, eh? Well this 1080P transfer is the brightest Blu-ray of the three compared. Some fans prefer the lighter look. It is AVC, single-layered with a modest, but supportive bitrate. The package also has optional English subtitles and a decent DTS-HD Master track (that may, actually, be the superior to the TCM Dolby TrueHD). It is, unfortunately, bare-bones with no extras at all - but is also Region FREE (despite saying 'A'-locked on the back case) but the price seems irresistible at less than $9 USD. Nice cover too...

David from our ListServ tells us: 'You can safely take it from me the Mill Creek uses the "newer" 22 gig encode Sony did for TCM after the first release which was not bad but was poorly authored IMO with no Eddie Muller pieces, lossy audio and some significant compression issues. Also no SDH.

The remaster was done obviously because Sony was unhappy with and reacting to some criticism of such a relatively shoddy release of one of their Premium 4k restorations (which played at Bologna and elsewhere.)

Unfortunately the second remaster pressing was plagued with major black crush push due to a post mastering pressing fault. I discovered by accident one could alleviate this on playback by pushing up the "brightness" control on your TV or projector by approx. 20% (depending on the accuracy of your monitor's calibration. This was far from ideal of course, but at least audio was now lossless LPCM but still no SDH. I was contacted by someone from the technical team who authored the second master who confirmed all of this. I am not at liberty to say who this was.

The Mill Creek finally delivers the encode correctly and with SDH. I believe the slightly "brighter" image (than the very first botched TCM disc and obviously the black crushed 2nd TCM disc) is as result of the higher bitrate and resolution of the 22 gig encode which is a far more accurate depiction of the 4K which I have seen.
' (Thanks David!)

***

ADDITION: TCM (***NEW Version***) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - January 2014': Thanks to David H. on our ListServ for first alerting us to the 'updated' status of the Blu-ray. I guess enough voiced displeasure with the original Blu-ray had enough impact for TCM to 're-do it properly'. The image quality is more robust supporting the film's grain textures to a higher degree but most notable is how much darker the "***NEW Version***" image is, almost to the point of losing detail or venturing into moiring territory. But, it honestly looks far more film-like to me using a higher file size (now on a dual-layered disc), and hence higher bitrate and the superior AVC encode as opposed to the VC-1 found on the previous 1080P. Compression artifacts found (zoomed-in) on the original BD seem to have disappeared. This is, absolutely, better...

Although a puny kbps (at 570) the improved Dolby TrueHD in 2.0 channel sounds superior in my opinion. It's richer than the standard Dolby of the original BD. Heinz Roemheld's score certainly benefits from the lossless rendering. Unfortunately, there are still no subtitles offered. The Blu-ray disc remains region FREE.

Extras duplicate but, now the previously advertised 'comments by Eddie Muller', absent on the first Blu-ray, are there. A very dapper Eddie's thoughts are divided into An Epic Noir Poem, running 2.5-minutes, Back Story lasting almost 13-minutes and It's Film Noir Distilled for just shy of 5-minutes. There is an enclosed DVD and the case is stilled 'Keep' but is transparent (and still in a slipcase).

The improvements, more robust a/v and Eddie's input are very much appreciated and this new Blu-ray package resides in an important place in my collection.

***

 

ADDITION: TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - January 2014': I truly wish I was more enthused about this release. While I wouldn't complain vehemently about one specific item on my list of underwhelming attributes of this package - the totality of the group makes me... well, disappointed. Firstly, (and I know these are not big deals - alone) the package is a standard Keep case (as in DVD-standard sized.) It mentioned nothing about being Blu-ray on the cover. The BD disc says "1" (?) as in region one (I suppose they meant "A") it is instead region FREE. The transfer is single-layered (this is Welles for gosh sakes!) with a lowish bitrate. It is rendered in VC-1 (?) as opposed to the superior, IMO, AVC encode. It does not have lossless sound (?) or any optional subtitles. At present, the TCM Shop advertises the extras to include an Eddie Muller (perhaps my favorite commentarist - certainly for Noir) commentary. It's not there (I'm sure they will update this on their site) - it is the same Bogdanovich one from the 2000 DVD. Now, being fair - the 1080P image quality is certainly improved over SD. It shows some nice grain, superior detail, and, notably, more information in the frame. Could it have looked better with dual-layering and a higher, max'ed out, bitrate? I suspect it would have exported more prevalent grain and layered contrast. That would be my guess. I don't suppose we will ever know, now.

The audio seems similar to the DVD and Heinz Roemheld's score does not get the lossless treatment - which I consider a fairly big error. I will indulge more fully in the 1/2 hour podcast - which I sampled and it seemed to have value. Osborne's intro is less than 2-minutes and the rest are text/image screens. I will also look at the DVD and see if there is something more substantial (in terms of supplements there). So, this is simply an initial warning. There is some sloppiness here in the authoring/transfer. It is far from ideal but it is superior in terms of the visual expression as compared to the older SD, but I think TCM missed a fine opportunity to take the high road with this release.  

***

ON THE DVD (November 2003): This was in the early days of DVD when Columbia ruled the roost. They put an immense amount of effort into their DVD productions (see "The Big Heat" as another example) and sadly now that has changed. This is as close to perfect DVD as you will find. The image is marvelous - extremely sharp, deep blacks and superb shadow detail. The original audio is crisp. My only gripe, and it is a small one, - I have never liked the bright yellow (and overly large) subtitle font. That is my only complaint.

Obviously made to sell in other markets this DVD is filled with subtitle and DUB options and is encoded for regions 1, 3 and 4 in the NTSC standard. It not only includes a commentary by Welles scholar Peter Bogdanovich, but also a 20 minute featurette conversation with him, some talent bio text screens, trailers and some vintage advertising stills. DVDBeaver encourages you to pick up this and all those early Columbia DVDs when that studio seemed to be more keen on investing some real effort into their discs than they are now. This is a must-own DVD. out of

Gary W. Tooze

 

 


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TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 

TCM ***NEW Version*** Blu-ray adds the following

Mill Creek Blu-ray


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

 

1) Columbia Tri-Star - Regions 1,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - SECOND

3) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - THIRD

4) Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

Subtitle Sample (TCMs don't have subtitle option)

 

Screen Captures

 

 

1) Columbia Tri-Star - Regions 1,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - SECOND

3) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - THIRD

4) Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

3) Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

3) Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

3) Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

3) Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

3) Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

3) Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

1) Columbia Tri-Star - Regions 1,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Columbia Tri-Star - Regions 1,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 


1) Columbia Tri-Star - Regions 1,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Columbia Tri-Star - Regions 1,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - MIDDLE

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

1) TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray - TOP

2) TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


Associated Reading (CLICK COVERS or TITLES for more information)

 

This is Orson Welles
by Orson Welles, Peter Bogdanovich, Jonathan Rosenbaum
Orson Welles on Shakespeare: The W.P.A. and Mercury Theatre Playscripts
by Orson Welles, Simon Callow, Richard France
Orson Welles: Interviews (Conversations with Filmmakers (Paperbacks))
by Orson Welles, Mark W. Estrin
The Trial
by Franz Kafka
Orson Welles : The Stories of His Life
by Peter Conrad
Rosebud : The Story of Orson Welles
by David Thomson
Encyclopedia of Orson Welles (Great Filmmakers)
by Chuck Berg, Tom Erskine, John C. Tibbetts, James M. Welsh, Thomas L. Erskine
Chimes at Midnight: Orson Welles, Director (Rutgers Films in Print)
by Bridget Gellert Lyons

Box Covers

 

 

 

  

Distribution Columbia Tri-Star Home Video - Region 1, 3, 4 - NTSC TCM - Region FREE - Blu-ray TCM (**NEW Version**) - Region FREE - Blu-ray Mill Creek - Region FREE - Blu-ray




 

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Gary Tooze

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