Firstly, a HUGE thanks to our Patreon supporters. Your generosity touches me deeply. These supporters have become the single biggest contributing factor to the survival of DVDBeaver. Your assistance has become essential. We are always trying to expand Patron benefits... you get access to the Silent Auctions and over 5000 unpublished screen captures (in lossless PNG format, if that has appeal for you) listed HERE. Please consider helping with $3 or more each month so we can continue to do our best in giving you timely, thorough reviews, calendar updates and detailed comparisons. Thank you so much. We aren't going to exist without another 100 or so patrons.


 

Search DVDBeaver

S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

Directed by Bob Clark
UK / CANADA 1979

 

From Bob Clark, the acclaimed director of Dead of Night, Black Christmas, Breaking Point, Tribute, Porky’s and A Christmas Story, comes this horrifying murder-mystery which pits legendary detective Sherlock Holmes against the notorious serial killer Jack the Ripper! When Scotland Yard is unable to stop the gruesome rampage of Jack the Ripper, a citizens’ committee asks Sherlock Holmes (Christopher Plummer, The Silent Partner) and his trusted associate Dr. John H. Watson (James Mason, The Man Between) to investigate. Now the brilliant pair must follow a terrifying trail of clues that includes a frightened psychic (Donald Sutherland, Invasion of the Body Snatchers), a suspicious inspector (David Hemmings, Blow-Up), an institutionalized woman (Geneviève Bujold, Coma) and the Prime Minister of England (John Gielgud, Murder on the Orient Express). But even if Holmes and Watson’s remarkable powers of deduction can unmask the maniacal fiend, are they prepared to face the most shocking secret of all? Find out in this masterful suspense thriller that both fans and critics have called the most exciting and original Sherlock Holmes movie ever made! The Stellar cast also include Susan Clark (Coogan’s Bluff), Anthony Quayle (Guns of Navarone), and Frank Finlay (Lifeforce).

***

Sherlock Holmes is drawn into the case of Jack the Ripper who is killing prostitutes in London's East End. Assisted by Dr. Watson, and using information provided by a renowned psychic, Robert Lees, Holmes finds that the murders may have its roots in a Royal indiscretion and that a cover-up is being managed by politicians at the highest level, all of whom happen to be Masons.

Posters

Theatrical Release: February 1st, 1979

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Review: Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

  

Bonus Captures:

Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 2:04:00.683        
Video

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 40,587,168,474 bytes

Feature: 39,105,183,744 bytes

Video Bitrate: 37.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1555 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1555 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Commentaries:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Kino

 

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 40,587,168,474 bytes

Feature: 39,105,183,744 bytes

Video Bitrate: 37.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• Audio Commentary with Director Bob Clark
• NEW Audio Commentary by Film Historians Howard S. Berger and Steve Mitchell
• Theatrical Trailer (3:33 in SD)


Blu-ray Release Date:
June 23rd, 2020
Standard Blu-ray Case

Chapters 11

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Kino Blu-ray (June 2020): Kino have transferred Bob Clark's Murder By Decree to Blu-ray. It is cited as being from a "Brand New HD Master". It is on a dual-layered disc with a max'ed out bitrate. This is a strong production with little spared in the way of art direction, wardrobe and cast. The image in 1080P is consistent with true colors, depth and pleasing detail in close-ups. It maintains a film-like thickness throughout with reasonably heavy texture. It can look a shade 'light' but that may be intentional (see commentary) I suspect this is a strong replication of the appearance.   

NOTE: We have added 66 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-ray, Kino use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track (16-bit) in the original English language. It is another advancement in the film's effects and score by Paul Zaza (Stone Cold Dead, Porky’s), and Carl Zittrer (Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things, Black Christmas, Blood Orgy of the She Devils, Porky's, Deranged, Dead of Night) sounding moody if fairly subtle, but effective, at times. Kino offer optional English subtitles on their Region 'A' Blu-ray.

The Kino Blu-ray offers a two commentaries - a new one by Howard S. Berger and Steve Mitchell as well as the older commentary with director Bob Clark (from the Anchor Bay 2003 DVD?). Clark identifies studio shots (17 sets) from location work - kind of routine with plenty of gaps. Unfortunately he passed away in 2007. I enjoyed the Berger and Mitchell commentary much more. These guys are great although the audio quality sounds almost like they are on the phone - so that is not ideal. But their discussion - from the color palette (lack of primaries, except for blood red.) Berger sees some of Dan Curtis' 'Night Stalker' cloaking of visuals - creating a 'look of evil' - doing a lot with so little. This would be very much a Bob Clark 'cinematic shorthand' technique. These guys are great to listen to - fabulous. There is also an SD trailer for the film.  

Murder by Decree has both the iconic fictional sleuth, and the historically unidentified serial killer Jack the Ripper. They preside culturally together in the same Victorian era with foggy, mysterious, London back alleys, and a cracker of a mystery - as the great detective states "the game is afoot!". Christopher Plummer is wonderful as Sherlock Holmes with totally professional support from James Mason as Dr. Watson, David Hemmings as Inspector Foxborough, Susan Clark as Mary Kelly, John Gielgud, Donald Sutherland, Geneviève Bujold - and the list goes one. As discussed in the commentary - this is an 'A' level production - plenty spent on art direction, top level crew and an intelligent realization. It's one of the better Sherlock films ever made. The Kino Blu-ray has a great presentation - two commentaries and is a cracker of a Holmes adventure - the long-debated mystery of Jack the Ripper! Absolutely recommended!

Gary Tooze

 


Menus / Extras

 


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

 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

More full resolution (1920 X 1080) Blu-ray Captures for DVDBeaver Patreon Supporters HERE

 

 

 
Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

  

Bonus Captures:

Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

Search DVDBeaver

S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

Hit Counter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DONATIONS Keep DVDBeaver alive:

 CLICK PayPal logo to donate!

Gary Tooze

Thank You!