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http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/hitchcock.htm
UK 1939

"The film made a sizeable profit at the box-office because Hitchcock had developed a loyal following and reputation for entertaining pictures, and because the film had a winning cast and was based on a popular book. Nevertheless, the critics were unkind to Jamaica Inn; one called it "a singularly dull and uninspired picture-highly lackadaisical melodrama." For people expecting a Hitchcock picture, it was a letdown, and it was obvious that the director had lost his interest in the property before he completed work on it. If Hitchcock's enthusiasm isn't so apparent on the screen, the phlegmatic acting of Charles Laughton is.  Always the perfectionist, Laughton wore a putty nose because he thought that would make him look more like an indulgent squire-fat, bloated, wicked, mad, and shrewd. Laughton does give a powerful performance but, like the squire he portrays, it is self-indulgent and interferes with the story. With Jamaica Inn, Hitchcock's English period was concluded. He left England for his new country and the beginning of a lucrative and distinguished career in Hollywood."

Extract© Richard A. Harris, Michael S. Lasky: The Complete Films of Alfred Hitchcock found at Britmovie.com HERE

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Comparison:

Kino - Region 1 - NTSC vs. LaserLight - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Cohen Media Group '75th Anniversary Edition' - Region 'A' - Blu-ray vs. Arrow - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

LaserLight screenshots courtesy of Ashirg

1) Kino - Region 1- NTSC LEFT

2) Laserlight - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Cohen Media Group - Region 'A' - Blu-ray THIRD

4) Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray RIGHT

 

Box Covers

  

 

  

Distribution Kino / Image Entertainment
Region 1 encoded (North America) 
LaserLight 
Region 0 
Cohen Media '75th Anniversary Edition' - Region 'A' - Blu-ray Arrow Video
Region 'B' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:38:45 1:30:18  1:39:39.014   1:39:24.000  
Video 4:3 Full Screen (Standard) - 1.33:1
Average Bitrate: 7.31  mb/s
NTSC 704x480 29.97 f/s
4:3 Full Screen (Standard) - 1.33:1
Average Bitrate:  undeterminable
NTSC 704x480 29.97 f/s

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 35,608,952,303 bytes

Feature: 30,292,384,704 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.06 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 31,514,853,164 bytes

Feature: 29,280,983,040 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 33.98 Mbps

 

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

Bitrate: Kino

Bitrate: Laserlight

Bitrate: Cohen Blu-ray

Bitrate: Arrow Blu-ray

Audio English (Dolby Digital 1.0)

English (Dolby Digital 1.0)

LPCM Audio English 2304 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bit
Commentary:

LPCM Audio English 2304 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bit

LPCM Audio English 768 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps /
16-bit
Commentary:

LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps
/ 16-bit

Subtitles English or none Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, None None English or none
Features Release Information:
Production Company: Kino Video

Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen (Standard) - 1.33:)

Edition Details:
none

 

DVD Release Date: August 13th, 1999
Keep Case

Chapters 12

Release Information:
Production Company: Laserlight

Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen (Standard) - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• Introduction by Tony Curtis
• "The Birds" theatrical trailer

 

DVD Release Date: February 2nd, 2000
Snap Case

Chapters 24

Release Information:
Studio: Cohen Media Group

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.33:1

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 35,608,952,303 bytes

Feature: 30,292,384,704 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.06 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:
• Feature Length audio commentary with film critic Jeremy Arnold
• Shipwrecked in a Studio - a video essay by Donald Spoto (13:06 in 1080P)
• Re-release
Trailer (1:28 in 1080P)

• 8-page liner notes leaflet with photos

Blu-ray Release Date: May 12th, 2015
Transparent
Blu-ray Case
Chapters: 10

Release Information:
Studio: Arrow
 

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 31,514,853,164 bytes

Feature: 29,280,983,040 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 33.98 Mbps

 

Edition Details:

• Audio commentary by film critic Jeremy Arnold
• Shipwrecked in a Studio, a visual essay by Donald Spoto, author of The Dark Side Of Genius: The Life Of Alfred Hitchcock and Spellbound by Beauty: Alfred Hitchcock and His Leading Ladies (13:05)
• Trailer (1:27)
• Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Dan Mumford
• First pressing only: Collector's booklet containing new writing on the film by Nathalie Morris

DVD included

Blu-ray Release Date: November 7th, 2016
Transparent Blu-ray Case

Chapters: 12

 

Comments

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

 

ADDITION: Arrow - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - October 16': The Arrow starts with Cohen's logo - derived from their restoration. It is basically the same release - the image is a bit brighter - audio may be flatter and less robust - it offers the same excellent commentary with film critic Jeremy Arnold (who, coincidentally, emailed me as I was listening to it!) - it has the same 13-minute video essay by Donald Spoto entitled Shipwrecked in a Studio, and both have the re-release trailer. One difference is that Arrow have included optional English (SDH) subtitles - and their BD is region 'B'-locked, a second disc DVD (Dual-Format) is included, a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Dan Mumford, and for the first pressing only - a collector's booklet containing new writing on the film by Nathalie Morris.

 

So Arrow, marginally advance with some bells and whistles. Great to see this wayward classic treated right...

 

***

ADDITION: Cohen Media Group '75th Anniversary' - Region 'A' - Blu-ray (April 2015): Cohen's new 1080P transfer is quite the revelation from what we have seen in the past on digital. This restoration is very impressive. It is on a dual-layered disc with a max'ed out bitrate and looks consistent, clean with infinitely superior contrast to the older SDs. There is even some depth and texture is very apparent. It looks quite immaculate to me and appears to be the full version with none of the cuts noted on the Laserlight DVD.

 

Audio-wise, Cohen have gone with a linear PCM 2.0 channel mono track at 2304 kbps. It sounds just as adept as the video with some nice echo effects in the cave scenes and depth in the shipwreck opening. The score by Eric Fenby is fairly unremarkable and sparsely utilized but when there is some need it is exported with appropriate depth and crispness. Dialogue is consistent and very clean. There are no subtitles on the region 'A'-locked Blu-ray disc.

 

Supplements include a wonderfully educational audio commentary with film critic Jeremy Arnold who explores much of the film's production, Hitch and more. There is a new, 13-minute video essay by Donald Spoto entitled Shipwrecked in a Studio that is also well-worth indulging in. We also get the new re-release trailer and the package has an 8-page liner notes leaflet with photos.

 

Fabulous release from Cohen - we can easily endorse. I've always wanted a dynamically superior presentation of Jamaica Inn and the extras add even more essential value. Out highest recommendation!

***

ON THE DVDs: Urggg.. not much of a transfer from either of these distributors... The Kino is brighter but fraught with scratches and damage etc. There is chroma on both. The LaserLight is softer and looks to be from a slightly better transfer. Both are pretty hazy. Neither has much in the way of extras, actually 'none' at all for the Kino and just a Tony Curtis intro and trailer for "The Birds" with the LaserLight. The LaseLight has more chapters ( 24 vs. 12 ) but I liked the Menu better on the Kino. With such a poor transfer its kind of '6 or one/half a dozen of the other', but I would say get the LaserLight, it is much cheaper.

****

Dave says (thanks!): The running time of the Laserlight "Jamaica Inn" DVD had been bugging me, so I sat and watched it alongside the UK Carlton DVD.

At 51:55 (end of chapter 14) on the Laserlight disc, there's about 8 minutes of footage missing from the transfer. It's almost as if Laserlight managed to lose an entire chapter of their transfer! :-S

As Jem and Sir Humphrey leave the room, the DVD cuts to Mary, Patience and Joss at Jamaica Inn - there's no explanation as to how Mary returned there, or why Sir Humphrey and Jem (now dressed in a military uniform) are banging on the door outside.

The same footage is also missing in the recent "Collector's Edition" set from Diamond HERE.

Using the subtitle track on the Carlton DVD for the dialogue, I've put together a page describing the missing scenes HERE:

The Kino/Image Entertainment DVD has the footage intact, which explains it's longer running time (1:38:45 compared to the Laserlight's 1:30:18).



(Kino left, LaserLight  right)


 

Cohen Media Group - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

 


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

 

Subtitle Sample Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

 

 

1) Kino - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Laserlight - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Cohen Media Group - Region 'A' - Blu-ray THIRD

4) Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Kino - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Laserlight - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Cohen Media Group - Region 'A' - Blu-ray THIRD

4) Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Kino - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Laserlight - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Cohen Media Group - Region 'A' - Blu-ray THIRD

4) Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Kino - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Laserlight - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Cohen Media Group - Region 'A' - Blu-ray THIRD

4) Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Kino - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Laserlight - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Cohen Media Group - Region 'A' - Blu-ray THIRD

4) Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Kino - Region 1- NTSC TOP

2) Laserlight - Region 0 - NTSC - SECOND

3) Cohen Media Group - Region 'A' - Blu-ray THIRD

4) Arrow Video - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

More Blu-ray Captures

 


Report Card:

 

Image:

Blu-ray

Sound:

Blu-ray

Extras:

Arrow Blu-ray

 

Box Covers

  

 

  

Distribution Kino / Image Entertainment
Region 1 encoded (North America) 
LaserLight 
Region 0 
Cohen Media '75th Anniversary Edition' - Region 'A' - Blu-ray Arrow Video
Region 'B' - Blu-ray



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