This is the 14th Blu-ray of Criterion's Thirty-Two Blu-ray Special Edition 100 Years of Olympic Films that contains 53 newly restored films from 41 editions of the Olympic Games, presented together for the first time. It boasts landmark 4K restorations of Olympia, Tokyo Olympiad, and Visions of Eight, among other titles with new scores for the silent films, composed by Maud Nelissen, Donald Sosin, and Frido ter Beek. It also contains a lavishly illustrated, 216-page hardcover book, featuring notes on the films by cinema historian Peter Cowie; a foreword by Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee; a short history of the restoration project by restoration producer Adrian Wood; and hundreds of photographs from a century of Olympic Games.  This package will be released on December 5th, 2017. We will review/compare each disc as we view them.

 

 


 

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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Tokyo orimpikku" )

 

directed by Kon Ichikawa
Japan 1965

 

A spectacle of magnificent proportions, Kon Ichikawa’s Tokyo Olympiad ranks among the greatest documents of sport ever committed to film. Utilizing glorious widescreen cinematography, Ichikawa examines the beauty and rich drama on display at the 1964 Summer Games in Tokyo, creating a catalogue of extraordinary observations that range from the expansive to the intimate. The glory, despair, passion, and suffering of Olympic competition are rendered with lyricism and technical mastery, culminating in an inspiring testament to the beauty of the human body and the strength of the human spirit.

Posters

Theatrical Release: 20 March 1965 (Japan)

Reviews                                                                              More Reviews                                                                     DVD Reviews

 

 Comparison:

Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Gregory Meshman and Gary Tooze for the Screen Caps!

(Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT vs. Criterion Collection - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - RIGHT)

Box Covers

 

  

 

  

  

Distribution

Criterion Collection - Spine #155

Region 1 - NTSC

Criterion Collection (part of spine #900)
Region 'A' -
Blu-ray
Runtime 2:49:30 2:50:36.726
Video

2.35:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.17 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

2.39:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 49,598,415,464 bytes

Feature: 49,409,458,176 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 34.55 Mbps

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

Bitrate:

 

Criterion Collection

 

Bitrate:

 

Criterion Collection Blu-ray

 

Audio Japanese (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)

LPCM Audio Japanese 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit

Subtitles English, None English, None (burned-in Japanese for non-Japanese)
Features Release Information:
Studio: Criterion Collection

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.35:1

Edition Details:
Commentary by Film Historian Peter Cowie
1992 video interview with Kon Ichikawa
Liner Notes by Legendary Sports Writer George Plimpton
Complete List of Winners In All Events
Symposium On Tokyo Olympiad, Excerpted From the Cinematheque Ontario Book Kon Ichikawa

DVD Release Date: July 30, 2002
Keep Case

Chapters 41
 

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion Collection

 

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 49,598,415,464 bytes

Feature: 49,409,458,176 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 34.55 Mbps

 

Edition Details:
• None (on this
Blu-ray)

• the package contains a 216-page hardcover book, featuring notes on the films by cinema historian Peter Cowie; a foreword by Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee; a short history of the restoration project by restoration producer Adrian Wood; and hundreds of photographs from a century of Olympic Games.
 

Release Date: December 5th, 2017
Custom 
Blu-ray Package
(see below)
Chapters: 39

 

 

Comments

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

ADDITION: Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray September 2017: Criterion's Thirty-Two Blu-ray Special Edition is so large (6253 minutes) that we will review piece-meal as we are able to view individual discs. We started with, possibly, the most desirable title in the set, an icon of sports documentaries, Kon Ichikawa's 1965 film Tokyo Olympiad about the 1964 Summer Olympics held in Japan - which is on Blu-ray #14 of this package.

This is one of the films from the Special Edition that is transferred in a 4K restoration. Compared to Criterion's way out-of-print 2002 DVD colors take some shifts - and generally the image is darker. Black and white visuals that had a blue leaning on the DVD now look properly contrasted (see the image of USSR hammer-throwing competitor Romuald Klim below.) There is a bit of variation in the 2.39:1 frame, as compared to the DVD, but most of the time the new Blu-ray shows more information on all 4 edges. Grain textures are finer and more consistent. The image is very clean without speckles or damage of any kind. Overall, colors are richer and deeper, detail tightens, there is more depth and it looks very impressive in-motion.

Audio gets a linear PCM mono (24-bit) transfer and sounds authentically flat. There is a credited score by Toshirô Mayuzumi (Profound Desires of the Gods, Good Morning) although most will remember the sounds of the competition; the track and field starting gun, the anthems and the silent preparations. It's remains fairly unremarkable but the uncompressed transfer is a notch ahead of the SD's lossy treatment of the film's audio. There are optional English subtitles - Ichikawa forgoing pervasively consistent narration for the actual dialogue heard at the events; loudspeaker announcements, opening and closing ceremonies speeches etc. The non-Japanese voices in Tokyo Olympiad have burned-in Japanese subtitles (see samples below).

Surprisingly no digital extras on this Blu-ray - we lose the Cowie commentary and video interview of Ichikawa from the DVD (unless the latter is on another disc of the package.) There is a 216-page hardcover book, featuring notes on the films by cinema historian Peter Cowie; a foreword by Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee; a short history of the restoration project by restoration producer Adrian Wood; and hundreds of photographs from a century of Olympic Games, but I only have the screener discs at present.  

Kon Ichikawa’s Tokyo Olympiad is such an expressive film. It puts the ideals of the Olympics in the proper perspective by shedding light on individuals; losers and well as winners, defeat as well as glory. While the drama of competitions remain, the 'Nationalism' fervor (that too often move from pride to hatred) is kept as almost non-existent. I don't know of another documentary that so subtly imbues the concept that we are all just people - striving, achieving, advancing - never enemies. It's an essential masterpiece and a cornerstone of this massive set. The 4K restored presentation fortifies the film's priceless attributes as a revelation of the human spirit.      

 - Gary Tooze

 


Menus
Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC
 

Criterion Collection - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


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

 

Screen Captures

(Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Criterion Collection - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)


Example of burned-in Japanese subtitle for the brief English language segment

or Non Japanese Dialogue

(Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Criterion Collection - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)


(Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Criterion Collection - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)


(Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Criterion Collection - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)


(Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Criterion Collection - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)


(Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Criterion Collection - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)


(Criterion Collection - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP vs. Criterion Collection - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM)

More Blu-ray Captures


 

Report Card:

 

Image:

Blu-ray

Sound:

Blu-ray

Extras: Criterion DVD

 
Box Covers

 

  

 

  

  

Distribution

Criterion Collection - Spine #155

Region 1 - NTSC

Criterion Collection (part of spine #900)
Region 'A' -
Blu-ray

 




 

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