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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

directed by Richard Linklater
USA / Austria / Switzerland 1995

An exquisitely understated ode to the thrill of romantic possibility, the inaugural installment of The Before Trilogy opens with a chance encounter between two solitary young strangers. After they hit it off on a train bound for Vienna, the Paris university student Celine and the scrappy American tourist Jesse impulsively decide to spend a day together before he returns to the U.S. the next morning. As the pair roam the streets of the stately city, Richard Linklater’s tenderly observant gaze captures the uncertainty and intoxication of young love, from the first awkward stirrings of attraction to the hopeful promise that Celine and Jesse make upon their inevitable parting.

***

Critic/author/film journalist Robin Wood wrote quite a wonderful piece on "Before Sunrise" in an old issue of Cineaction. I happen to have it on my bookshelf and waited till I had seen the film before reading. His article boldly states...“this film belongs among the dozen or so that exemplify ‘cinema’ at its finest.” Very bold words considering the stature of the man who penned them. The film is, admittedly, extremely personal - one which might garner the description "either you get it or your don't" from bickering viewers. This is how I often described one of my favorite directors , Eric Rohmer. Both Linklater and Rohmer share a common romanticism in their works. Linklater obviously being more modern, but the same emotion is evoked. Overall "Before Sunrise" is quite flawless... perhaps its only fault being it could be considered inconclusive - but it is its obvious intent - and I consider one of its attributes.

 

Ethan Hawke is one of the best young actors working today. His performance in Alfonso Cuarón's unfairly judged "Great Expectations" helps make that film the hidden masterpiece that it is. Regardless, "Before Sunrise" is fabulous and I understand the sequel, Before Sunset, is likewise appealing. I can't wait.

Poster

Theatrical Release: January 27th, 1995 - USA

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Comparison:

Warner Home Video - Region 1- NTSC vs. Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

1) Warner - Region 1 - NTSC  - LEFT

2) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray  - RIGHT

 

Box Covers

Soundtrack Available HERE

Presently, only available in Criterion's "The Before Trilogy" Blu-ray

  

Distribution Warner Home Video - Region 1- NTSC Criterion Collection Spine # 857 - Region 'A' Blu-ray
Runtime 1:40:48 1:41:05.100
Video 1.78:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.61 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

Disc Size: 48,680,268,803 bytes

Feature Size: 29,877,393,408 bytes

Average Bitrate: 35.34 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC

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

Bitrate:

Bitrate: Blu-ray

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Dolby) , DUB: French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Dolby)  DTS-HD Master Audio English 2066 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2066 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Subtitles English, French, None English (SDH), None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Warner Home Video

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.78:1

Edition Details:

• Theatrical Trailer 

DVD Release Date: November 7th, 2001

Snapper Case
Chapters: 25

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion

Aspect Ratio:
1.85:1

Disc Size: 48,680,268,803 bytes

Feature Size: 29,877,393,408 bytes

Average Bitrate: 35.34 Mbps

Dual-layered Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC

Edition Details:

• The Space In Between, a new piece in which Linklater and actor-cowriters Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke discuss the trilogy, moderated by critic Kent Jones (43:39)
• 3×2, a new conversation between scholars Dave Johnson and Rob Stone about Linklater’s work (39:49)
• Behind-the-scenes footage from the film’s production (5:57)
 

Blu-ray  Release Date:  February 28th, 2017
Custom case  
Chapters:
24 

 

 

 

Comments:

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

 

ADDITION: Criterion Blu-ray - January 17': Like the entire "Before Trilogy" package this is described as "New, restored 2K digital transfer, approved by director Richard Linklater". It is dual-layered with a max'ed out bitrate. The visual improvement over SD is, like Before Sunset, more modest than we have seen from other bumps to the higher resolution. The Criterion is brighter with a very minor shift in colors (skin tones) and it, again, shows more information in the frame on the side edges. It looks authentic to its production roots but fans anticipating crisp, pristine lines will be left wanting. The film was never meant to look dynamically tight and glossy.

 

Criterion's lossless, DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel (24-bit) audio advances upon the lossy Dolby of the Warner DVD. This is noticeable, mostly, in the film's music. The score, credited to Fred Frith, is augmented by Henry Purcell, Beethoven, Vivaldi, Strauss, Bach as well as Boots Randolph, Kath Bloom and Fetish 69. It all sounds quite wonderful via the lossless.  Criterion have added optional English (SDH) subtitles and their Blu-ray is region 'A'-locked but it is possible that it might be released in the UK (with a region 'B'-coding) in the future.

 

Supplements include The Space In Between, a new, 3/4 hour piece in which Linklater and actor-cowriters Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke discuss the trilogy, moderated by critic Kent Jones. It was recorded in Los Angeles and new York by Criterion in 2016. 3×2, a new 40-minute conversation between scholars Dave Johnson and Rob Stone about Linklater’s work as they explore the writer-director's themes in The Before Trilogy and beyond. There is also 6-minutes of Behind-the-scenes footage from the film’s production. The Criterion "The Before Trilogy" package includes, Blu-rays of Before Sunset and Before Midnight, and a liner notes booklet with an essay on the trilogy by critic Dennis Lim.

Criterion's package has the most value with the three films - which cry-out to belong together - and the extensive extras. Very unique and I am always reminded of Eric Rohmer...  Absolutely recommended!

***

ON THE DVD: This is a good DVD. Take into account it is from 2001 - it is anamorphic, tight lines, a little on the dark side, but appears to have avoided manipulations. Subtitles are clear yet unobtrusive. There are no extras to speak of. I am happy with the image and audio (a French DUB is offered as an option too). The price sure is right (less than $12)!  out of   


Warner - Region 1 - NTSC

 

Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray



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

Screen Captures

1) Warner - Region 1 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray  - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray  - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray  - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray  - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray  - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1 - NTSC  - TOP

2) Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray  - BOTTOM

 

More Blu-ray Captures


Box Covers

Soundtrack Available HERE

Presently, only available in Criterion's "The Before Trilogy" Blu-ray

  

Distribution Warner Home Video - Region 1- NTSC Criterion Collection Spine # 857 - Region 'A' Blu-ray


 

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