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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Swept Away...by an Unusual Destiny in the Blue Sea of August" or "Travolti da un insolito destino nell'azzurro mare d'agosto")

 

directed by Lina Wertmüller
Italy 1974

 

Set against the backdrop of the beautiful Mediterranean, Swept Away (1974) is Lina Wertmuller's most famous and controversial film about sex, love and politics. On an elegant yacht cruising off the coast of Sardinia, Raffaella (Mariangela Melato), a rich and stunning capitalist, enjoys tormenting Gennarino (Giancarlo Giannini), a Communist sailor. Fate weaves a different scenario and roles become reversed when the two find themselves stranded together on a deserted island. Raffaella must submit to Gennarino in order to survive, which culminates in a dramatic climax when they are rescued. They must determine if their love can survive the harsh realities of civilization.

***

"Swept Away" is the story of their tumultuous, slapstick courtship, his systematic humiliation of her (as she sees it) until, suddenly, she submits to her love for him and becomes in the process truly liberated. Feminists, I suspect, will debate a number of plot points as if Miss Wertmuller had set out to write a treatise and not to make a love story, some of whose meanings are not easily translated into feminist agitprop.

Excerpt From the NYTimes Review HERE

***

Lina Wertmuller's "Swept Away by an Unusual Destiny in the Blue Sea of August" resists the director's most determined attempts to make it a fable about the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, and persists in being about a man and a woman. On that level, it's a great success, even while it's causing all sorts of mischief otherwise. We could have deep arguments about the meaning of it all, and no doubt we will, but as a sort of kinky update of "Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison," the movie works just fine.

Excerpt From Roger Ebert's Review HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: Italy - 1974, USA - 1975

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Comparison:

Koch Lorber - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Christopher Long for the Review!

Box Covers

   

   

   

Distribution

Koch Lorber

Region 1 - NTSC

Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:54:00 1:54:10.927 
Video

1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 8.64 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 45,216,170,373 bytes

Feature: 35,054,659,584 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 35.00 Mbps

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

Bitrate

Bitrate Blu-ray

Audio Dolby Digital 2.0

DTS-HD Master Audio Italian 1815 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1815 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentary:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1828 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1828 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)

Subtitles English, none English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Koch Lorber

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:

DVD Release Date: 04/04/2006

Chapters 28

Release Information:
Studio: Kino
 

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 45,216,170,373 bytes

Feature: 35,054,659,584 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 35.00 Mbps

 

Edition Details:

• Audio Commentary by Valerio Ruiz, director of Behind the White Glasses
Excerpt from Behind the White Glasses, a documentary on Lina Wertmuller (10:01)
Interview with director Amy Heckerling (8:45)
Trailers (Swept Away - Italian - 2:48, English DUB - 2:53) and others
Booklet essays by director Allison Anders and Grace Russo Bullaro, author of Man in Disorder: The Cinema of Lina Wertmuller in the 1970s

Blu-ray
Release Date: September 12th, 2017
Standard
Blu-ray Case

Chapters: 8

 

 

Comments:

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

 

ADDITION: Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray August 17': This is quite an upgrade from the 2006 DVD. It seems every facet of the image quality improves - from colors, detail, grain support and there is notably more information in the frame. It is in the correct 1.85:1 aspect ratio and looks very pleasing in-motion. The captures indicate the 1080P's superiority. It is transferred on a dual-layered disc with a max'ed out bitrate and the result is impressive.

 

Kino use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel at1815 kbps (24-bit) in the original Italian language with the, usual, post-production DUB'ing. Dialogue has imperfections (varying) that are, probably down to the original production. I didn't hear any significant miscues. The romantic and comedic-leaning score is by Italian composer and jazz musician Piero Piccioni (Three Brothers, The 10th Victim, Adua and Her Friends, Hands Over the City, L'assassino, The Moment of Truth) it includes a 'love theme' with a Bossa Nova influence and sounds excellent via the lossless.

 

Kino include an excellent audio commentary by Valerio Ruiz, director of Behind the White Glasses. In her attractive accent she discusses many topics including Swept Away's narrative style - exaggerated characters - Lina's use of DUBs (example using Candice Bergen to do post DUBing in Italian for her film A Night Full of Rain) and to occasionally alter dialogue as well as her appreciation with dialects plus a strong sense of music as an expressive film feature. I thought it was very rewarding and enjoyed it thoroughly. There is also a 10-minute excerpt from Behind the White Glasses, Valerio Ruiz's 2015 documentary on Lina Wertmuller. There is a 9-minute interview with director Amy Heckerling who starts by describing a friend who used Swept Away as a litmus test for potential girlfriends - if they liked it he would go on future dates - if not, he rejected them. She provides some interesting information. There are also trailers including Italian and English language (DUBs) for Swept Away and others. The package has booklet essays by director Allison Anders and Grace Russo Bullaro, author of Man in Disorder: The Cinema of Lina Wertmuller in the 1970s.

 

This bodes very well for the other Lina Wertmuller films coming to Kino Blu-ray (Seven Beauties, Ferdinando and Carolina, Summer Night). This is a wonderful package and I gained appreciation for a film that I initially dismissed - in the vastly improved HD a/v and the supplements which bolstered my education and interest - especially the Ruiz commentary. Strongly recommended!

Gary Tooze  

***

ON THE DVD: This DVD offers a "Digitally Restored and Re-Mastered" transfer of the film. Apparently, the original release (also by Koch) was dreadful. This one is quite good, though not perfect. The image is a bit soft, but the colors are rich, and the contrast is sharp. The transfer is particularly strong in the brighter shots - take a look at the last screen capture below with the sun glinting off the water. As nasty a film as "Swept Away" is, it is quite beautifully shot.

"Swept Away" has its supporters, but I'm certainly not one of them. The one and only reason to watch the film is for Giannini’s dynamic physical performance, but you can watch him in much better films. Don’t waste your time.

 - Christopher Long


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Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray



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

 

Subtitle Sample

 

1) Koch Lorber - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

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

 

 


1) Koch Lorber - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


1) Koch Lorber - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


1) Koch Lorber - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


1) Koch Lorber - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


1) Koch Lorber - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

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

 

More Blu-ray captures


Box Covers

   

   

   

Distribution

Koch Lorber

Region 1 - NTSC

Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray




 

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Gary Tooze

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