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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Esther e il Re" )


directed by Raoul Walsh, Mario Bava
Italy, USA 1960


Esther and the King (1960) is a cast-of-thousands epic spectacle set in the Ancient World, of the kind popular in its era. The film is visually gorgeous, with rich color design in its elaborate costumes and sets. Such an immersion in a world of spectacle was typical of such 1960-era films, including Fritz Lang's The Tiger of Eschnapur (1959) and Anthony Mann's The Fall of the Roman Empire (1964). All of these films have huge sets that represent royal palaces. The sets are brilliantly colored, and remote from anything in modern life. They give a dream like feeling to the works, a sense of total escapism from contemporary reality, at least in visual appearance.

Excerpt of review from The Films of Raoul Walsh [Michael E. Grost] located HERE


Theatrical Release: 18 November 1960 (New York City, NY)

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DVD Review: 20th Century Fox (Fox Cinema Archives) - Region 0 - NTSC

Big thanks to Gregory Meshman for the Review!

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20th Century Fox

Region 0 - NTSC

Runtime 1:49:08

2.32:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 4.86 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

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


Audio Dolby Digital Mono 2.0
Subtitles None
Features Release Information:
Studio: 20th Century Fox

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterboxed - 2.32:1

Edition Details:
• Theatrical Trailer (2:26)

DVD Release Date: March 18th, 2014

Chapters 11



Esther and the King has been available for a very long time from various public domain companies in a cropped full screen format with washed out colors. The film has been available from Germany in an anamorphic format in its original aspect ratio since 2012, so it's baffling that the new MOD release from 20th Century Fox would use letterboxed format without anamorphic enhancement. Mind you, the fine colors of Mario Bava cinematography look decent and it's a step-up from the unwatchable PD discs, but the resolution is lacking. And this kind of cinematography would benefit greatly from higher definition. The stereo soundtrack is decent and a trailer is included as an extra. We will seek the German disc to compare to this edition, but so far this is best edition in region 1.

  - Gregory Meshman


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20th Century Fox

Region 0 - NTSC





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