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The Captive [Blu-ray]
(Cecil B. DeMille, 1915)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Jesse L. Lasky Feature Play Company
Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 14,915,117,410 bytes
Feature Size: 14,676,135,936 bytes
Video Bitrate: 34.76 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: September 13th, 2016
Aspect ratio: 1.33:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 2174 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2174 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
"Cecil B. DeMille s
Silent film The Captive, is a
found treasure. Set during the Balkan Wars, The Captive
tells the story of Sonia (Blanche Sweet, The Woman in
White), a young woman living in Montenegro and left to
care for her younger brother Milos (Gerald Ward, The
Warrens of Virginia) and the family farm when older
brother Marko (Page Peters, Davy Crockett) goes off
to battle. Unable to handle the day-to-day tasks following
her brother s tragic death, help comes in the form of Mahmud
Hassan (House Peters, Prisoners of the Storm) a
captured Turk nobleman now a prisoner of war. Tasked with
helping Sonia, their initial frosty relationship soon melts
into love. As the war rages on Sonia, Mahmud and Milos will
face near-insurmountable obstacles in their quest for a
better life amidst the hell of war.
The Captive is an American Silent-era film released on April 22, 1915 in five reels. The film was directed, written and produced by Cecil B. DeMille. Jesse L. Lasky was also a producer and Jeanie MacPherson worked with DeMille to write the screenplay. Blanche Sweet stars as Sonia Martinovich alongside House Peters as Mahmud Hassan. The film details the romantic war-era plight of Montenegrin protagonist Sonia Martinovich and her Turkish lover, Mahmud Hassan. The film is based on a play written by Cecil B. DeMille and Jeanie MacPherson. The Captive has grossed just over $56,000.
The Captive chronicles the life of a young woman named Sonia
Martinovitch (Blanche Sweet) who lived during the midst of the Balkan
Wars. She lives close to the Turkish border on a small farm in
Montenegro with her older brother Marko Martinovich (Page Peters) and
younger brother Milo (Gerald Ward). Nearby, a Turkish nobleman by the
name of Mahmud Hassan (House Peters) lives in a lavish palace. Marko
Martinovich fights in the Battle of Lule Burgess, and is tragically
killed, leaving Martinovich and her remaining brother, Milo, helpless.
Subsequently, Hassan is taken prisoner, and assigned to the
Martinovich’s farm to help her with the chores Sonia is unable to
complete without her brother.
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
The Captive arrives on Blu-ray from Olive Films. This is only single-layered but the 50-minute film has a max'ed out bitrate and visually looks impressive considering the age of the film. There is plenty of grain textures, numerous tints connoting scene/atmosphere changes and the overall 1080P image is very strong for a Silent Era film. The Blu-ray presentation is surprising in it's clarity - especially since it was thought to be lost for many years before being discovered in Paramount’s vault in 1970. This provides a very strong video presentation.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
Audio is transferred to a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track at a healthy 2174 kbps. Olive Films has commissioned a brand-new score by composer Lucy Duke. “The opportunity to create an original score to a DeMille Silent film is a singular opportunity – a musician’s dream come true!” said composer Lucy Duke. “I hope that the music is true to the era while remaining valid in a contemporary context, shining a new light on this film.” It is all pretty remarkable matching the impressiveness of the video presentation. There are no subtitles, but original English intertitles (samples above), and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.
No supplements - not even a trailer which is the bare-bones route that Olive are going with the majority of their releases.
September 15th, 2016
About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.
Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who
focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I
find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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