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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

The Valachi Papers [Blu-ray]

 

(Terence Young, 1972)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Dino De Laurentiis Company

Video: Twilight Time

 

Disc:

Region: FREE (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 2:05:09.543  

Disc Size: 33,407,593,415 bytes

Feature Size: 33,364,813,824 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.99 Mbps

Chapters: 24

Case: Transparent Blu-ray case

Release date: June, 2016

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.78:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1792 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1792 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Isolated Score:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1685 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1685 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)

 

Subtitles:

English (SDH), None

 

Extras:

• Partial Isolated Music Track

Liner notes by Julie Kirgo

Limited to 3,000 Copies!

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: Adapted from Peter Maas’ best-seller, The Valachi Papers (1972) tells the true story of Mafia informant Joseph Valachi, superbly incarnated here by Charles Bronson. A low-level gangster associated with the Genovese crime family, Valachi moves from punk to full-fledged gangster over the course of the brutal narrative, handsomely directed by Terence Young. Also starring the great Lino Ventura, Jill Ireland, and Joseph Wiseman, and featuring an effective score from Riz Ortolani.

 

 

The Film:

In 1962, soon after his arrvial at the Atlanta State Penetentiary, New York mobster Joseph Valachi is accosted by fellow inmates and accused of being a police informant. Furious over the charge, Joe asks to speak with his longtime Mafia boss, Don Vito Genovese, who is serving time for the same drug charges that landed Joe in prison. Joe's request is refused, however, and after thwarting would-be assassin Salerto in the prison showers, Joe is sent to solitary confinement for protection. Later, Joe beats another convict to death, mistakenly believing the man was about to ambush him. Although prison authorities threaten to remove him from solitary confinement if he does not cooperate with federal investigators, Joe remains silent and again demands to see Genovese. The don, who is treated like royalty by the prison guards, is disbelieving when Joe insists that he did not set Genovese up and, after giving Joe the "kiss of death," puts a $20,000 price on his head. Hurt and enraged by Genovese's lack of trust, Joe finally agrees to talk with FBI agent Ryan and is transferred to another prison.

Excerpt from TCM located HERE

The First Inside Account of the Mafia
In the 1960s a disgruntled soldier in New York's Genovese Crime Family decided to spill his guts. His name was Joseph Valachi. Daring to break the Mob's code of silence for the first time, Valachi detailed the organization of organized crime from the capos, or bosses, of every Family, to the hit men who "clipped" rivals and turncoats. With a phenomenal memory for names, dates, addresses, phone numbers—and where the bodies were buried—Joe Valachi provided the chilling facts that led to the arrest and conviction of America's major crime figures.
The rest is history.

Excerpt from B+N located HERE

 

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

The Valachi Papers comes to Twilight Time Blu-ray in a dual-layered, 1080P transfer with their usual high bitrate. The visuals are reasonable but not overwhelming. There is an inherent softness that is consistent but the thick visuals appear film-like in-motion. The lack of grain is disappointing and there is minimal depth. Marginal digitization is possible. The image is clean without speckles or marks. This Blu-ray gives a heavy presentation in the 1.78:1 aspect ratio - possibly as good as it will get for this, under-rated, film.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

The DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track at 1792 kbps (24-bit) sounds clean with a few richer moments in pushing the film's aggressive requirements in the form of gunfire and fist-fights. The score is credited to Riz Ortolani (Seven Deaths in the Cat's Eyes, The McKenzie Break, Day of Anger, Il Sorpasso, Woman Times Seven, Cannibal Holocaust, The Voyeur, Mondo Cane) and Armando Trovajoli (A Special Day,Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, Marriage Italian Style, La Vista). It sounds solid in the lossless adding to the film's tension and is also partially available in anl isolated score track. There are optional English subtitles (sample above) and my Oppo has identified it as being a region FREE.

 

 

Extras :

Twilight Time only include some liner notes by Julie Kirgo and the package is limited to 3,000 copies.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
The Valachi Papers is a good Bronson/prison/mobster flic - and that's enough for many. Beyond that it is still a well-realized film documenting the history of a mobster turned informant - named 'Joe Valachi'. The Twilight Time Blu-ray provides a 1080P a/v transfer for the film and although bare-bones still has value as the film is extremely entertaining - on that basis it is recommended to fans of this genre or the lead actor. 

Gary Tooze

June 27th, 2017

 

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.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze

 

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