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Directed by George More O'Ferrall
UK 1952

 

The Holly and the Ivy is the heart-warming Christmas tale set in post-war Britain based on the classic play by Wynyard Browne (Hobson’s Choice). Ralph Richardson (The Four Feathers) plays Reverend Martin Gregory, a recently widowed minister torn between his roles of clergyman and father. His zeal for attending to his parishioners leads him to neglect the needs of his own family, until emotions boil over one Christmas. The Holly and the Ivy is a charming and moving seasonal favorite, peaking with the family’s poignant reconciliation as they rediscover the true spirit of Christmas. This yuletide classic, also starring Celia Johnson (Brief Encounter), Margaret Leighton (Under Capricorn) and Denholm Elliott (Trading Places), was wonderfully directed by George More O’Ferrall (The Heart of the Matter).

***

Faithfully adapted from a popular holiday play by Wynyard Browne, this moving British drama centers on a recently widowed, aging country vicar who hosts a family Christmas and learns a valuable lesson about keeping his own homefires alight before spending too much time tending the fires of others. Those coming for the holiday include his sister, his late wife's sister, and her cousin. The vicar's free-spirited youngest daughter and his son, a furloughed soldier, also show up. The preacher's eldest daughter lives with him and together they welcome their guests. The vicar is a good man and a caring fellow who spends considerable time caring for and counseling his parishioners, perhaps too much time, for he does not recognize the troubles of his own clan. His devoted oldest daughter quietly deals with a terrible dilemma.

Excerpt from B+N located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: December 22nd, 1952

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Review: Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

ORDER Blu-ray:

Also available on Blu-ray from Studio Canal in the UK in December 2019:

and on DVD

Also available on DVD from Studio Canal in the UK in December 2019:

Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:20:53.431        
Video

1.33:1 1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 21,340,692,636 bytes

Feature: 20,292,120,576 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.90 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1554 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1554 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Kino

 

1.33:1 1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 21,340,692,636 bytes

Feature: 20,292,120,576 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.90 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• NEW Audio Commentary by Film Historian Jeremy Arnold
• Trailers


Blu-ray Release Date:
November 26th, 2019
Standard Blu-ray Case

Chapters 12

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Kino Blu-ray (November 2019): Kino have transferred the beautiful Christmas drama The Holly and the Ivy to Blu-ray with the film accurately described on IMDb as "A heartwarming tale of an English minister and his family reunited at Christmas time. Their story includes a remembrance of their World War II trials." It looks quite strong in 1080P - with a mild thickness and heaviness connoting film. It is on a single-layered Blu-ray disc with a high bitrate. There were some speckles but no overt damage and contrast was stable. This was a very decent HD presentation.

On their Blu-ray's audio Kino utilize a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel mono track (16-bit) in the original English language. It has some imperfections but is generally clean and clean with a score by Malcolm Arnold (Tunes of Glory, No Highway in the Sky. The Bridge On the River Kwai, Island in the Sun, Stolen Face, Hobson's Choice) that helps establish a tone of festive and familial warmness. Kino offer optional English subtitles on their Region 'A' Blu-ray.

The Kino Blu-ray has a new audio commentary by Film Historian Jeremy Arnold who does his usual expert job of detailing the production, cast, director and much more. I appreciated the film more hearing some of the historical background. There are also some trailers but none for the film.

One of the most heart-warming of' films - with a great cast, beautiful setting and effectively realized by O’Ferrall. The Holly and the Ivy is definitely one to view every holiday season and it's wonderful to have it on Blu-ray for such a purpose. If you have yet to see it - you are in for a treat. A strong recommendation! 

Gary Tooze

 


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Box Cover

ORDER:

Also available on Blu-ray from Studio Canal in the UK in December 2019:

and on DVD

Also available on DVD from Studio Canal in the UK in December 2019:

Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

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Gary Tooze

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