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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

Directed by Ken Russell
US / UK 1977

One of flamboyant director Ken Russell's more accessible biopics, Valentino is not totally successful but has several moments that are unforgettable. Among these are a horrifying jail sequence which takes advantage of the director's uncanny ability to capture grotesque cruelty; an explicitly sensual almost-seduction in a faux desert setting; and a powerful (and painful) climactic boxing scene. There are also a number of the director's trademark over-the-top visual flourishes, such as Leslie Caron's entrance as she comes to view Valentino's body; like most such moments, it's ultimately distracting and goes on too long to make the desired contribution to the film, but it's impressive nonetheless. Fortunately, Russell keeps much of his excesses under control; unfortunately, the script does not reward him for his relative restraint, as it fails to create a fully three-dimensional portrait of the titular character. It revolves around an intriguing idea ' that the screen's greatest lover was actually a slave to the women in his life ' but that idea is not really developed, and there is no attempt to explore why this should have been. Indeed, aside from the fact that Valentino is presented as a reluctant sex symbol who would rather have devoted his time to growing oranges, there is little interesting about the character. Rudolph Nureyev's unsure performance does not help matters, although he at least is physically right for the role. Caron is amusing in a supporting part, but Michelle Phillips fares less well; she is too relentlessly one-note for a role of this size. Like many films about performers, Valentino fails to make the central character come alive, but it does have enough assets to keep the viewer fairly entertained.

 

  Posters

Theatrical Release: September 7th, 1977

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Comparison:

BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray vs. Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - LEFT

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - RIGHT

 

Box Covers

 

    

Distribution BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray Kino Lorber
Region 'A' -
Blu-ray
Runtime 2:07:38.041 2:07:47.868
Video

Disc Size: 44,704,644,541 bytes

Feature Size: 35,916,754,944 bytes

Total Bitrate: 27.01 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG4 - AVC

Disc Size: 24,545,681,712 bytes

Feature Size: 22,172,264,448 bytes

Total Bitrate: 19.97 Mbps

Single-layered Blu-ray MPEG4 - AVC

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

Bitrate: BFI Blu-ray

Bitrate: Kino Blu-ray

Audio

LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit
LPCM Audio English 768 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit
Isolated Music and Effects track:

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

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1598 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1598 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 256 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 256 kbps

Subtitles English, None None
Features Release Information:
Studio: BFI

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio - 1.85:1

Disc Size: 44,704,644,541 bytes

Feature Size: 35,916,754,944 bytes

Total Bitrate: 27.01 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG4 - AVC

 

Edition Details:
• Audio commentary with Tim Lucas
• Original TV spots and trailers (2:30 + 4:45)
• Dudley Sutton remembers Ken Russell and filming Valentino (2015, 21:48)
• The Guardian Lecture: Ken Russell in conversation with Derek Malcolm (1988, 90 mins, audio with stills)
• Lynn Seymour remembers Rudolf Nureyev (2003, 8:40, audio with stills)
• Tonight: Nureyev on Ken Russell and Valentino (1977, 9:33)
• Stills & Special Collections gallery (2016, 9:31)
• The Funeral of Valentino (1926, 8:44)
• Textless opening and closing credits (4:14)
• Isolated music and effects track
• Fully illustrated 18-page booklet with extensive credits and newly commissioned essays

DVD of the feature and extras

Blu-ray Release Date: February 29th, 2016
Transparent
Blu-ray Case
Chapters: 12

Release Information:
Studio: Kino Lorber

 

Disc Size: 24,545,681,712 bytes

Feature Size: 22,172,264,448 bytes

Total Bitrate: 19.97 Mbps

Single-layered Blu-ray MPEG4 - AVC

 

Edition Details:
Audio Commentary by Film Historian Tim Lucas
"Trailers From Hell" with Bernard Rose (3:21)
Animated Montage of Behind-the-Scenes Images (1:08)
Orson Welles Remembers Rudolph Valentino (17:08)
Trailer For Valentino's Classic "Blood and Sand" (2:02)
Footage of Valentino's Funeral Procession (3:03)
Trailer Gallery (1:42, 3:04, 2:44)
 

Blu-ray Release Date: January 5th, 2016
Standard Blu-ray case

Chapters 9

 

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray February 16': Short story is that both are strong releases, with much in common, but BFI nudges ahead on the video presentation with dual-layering and a higher bitrate that showing in a richer, darker image. You can see for yourself in the compared captures - deeper blacks and more intense colors and it adds a slight preference - notable in-motion as well. For many these differences will be negligible.

Both use lossless transfers - liner PCM for BFI (both stereo and mono options) and DTS-HD Master for Kino at about the same kbps - and both are 16-bit. We get plenty of music in the film including Stanley Black's (The Day the Earth Caught Fire, War-Gods of the Deep, 1960's Hammer film Stop Me Before I Kill! ) Dark Eyes, El Choco and Ferde Grofι Sr. as well as Richard Day-Lewis (New Star in Heaven Tonight), Chris Ellis (The Sheik of Araby.) It supports the film's moods well and both tracks are competent, clean and export buoyancy, but only the BFI has optional English (SDH) subtitles. They are coded for their respective regions ('A' for Kino and 'B' for BFI.)

Both have the excellent and rewarding Tim Lucas commentary and while Kino add another 1/2 hour of good supplements, BFI go the extra mile including a new 21-minute piece of Dudley Sutton remembering Ken Russell and filming Valentino and a 90-minute The Guardian Lecture: Ken Russell in conversation with Derek Malcolm plus and isolated music and effects track, a DVD (Dual Format) and a fully illustrated 18-page booklet with extensive credits and newly commissioned essays.

While BFI get the nod as the superior Blu-ray package (subs, better video, more audio options and bonus extras), I'll still state both have plenty of value and region 'A'-locked audiences shouldn't feel slighted in the least by the Kino. We recommend both, but faithful Russell fans should indulge in the British disc - Valentino is quite the ride and the Lucas commentary is a super addition.  

Gary W. Tooze




Menus

BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

 

 

Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 


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

 

Subtitle Sample  BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

 

 

1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

1) BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


 

Box Covers

 

    

Distribution BFI - Region 'B' - Blu-ray Kino Lorber
Region 'A' -
Blu-ray




 

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Gary Tooze

Many Thanks...