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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

directed by Preston Sturges
USA 19
41

 

Barbara Stanwyck sizzles, Henry Fonda bumbles, and Preston Sturges runs riot in one of the all-time great screwballs, a pitch-perfect blend of comic zing and swoonworthy romance. Aboard a cruise liner sailing up the coast of South America, Stanwyck’s conniving card sharp sets her sights on Fonda’s nerdy snake researcher, who happens to be the heir to a brewery fortune. But when the con artist falls for her mark, her grift becomes a game of hearts—and she is determined to win it all. One in a string of matchless comedic marvels that Sturges wrote, directed, and produced as part of a dazzling 1940s run, this gender-flipped battle-of-wits farce is perhaps his most emotionally satisfying work, tempering its sparkling wit with a streak of tender poignancy supplied by the sensational Stanwyck at her peak.

***

It's no accident when wealthy Charles falls for Jean. Jean is a con artist with her sights set on Charles' fortune. Matters complicate when Jean starts falling for her mark. When Charles suspects Jean is a gold digger, he dumps her. Jean, fixated on revenge and still pining for the millionaire, devises a plan to get back in Charles' life. With love and payback on her mind, she re-introduces herself to Charles, this time as an aristocrat named Lady Eve Sidwich.

Posters

Theatrical Release: February 25th, 1941

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Comparison:

Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Criterion - Region 'A' / 'B' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

  

Bonus Captures:

Distribution Criterion Spine # 103 - Region 0 - NTSC Criterion Spine # 103 - Region 'A' / 'B' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:33:45        1:34:26.369  
Video 1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 8.10 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.37:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 45,510,766,794 bytes

Feature: 28,205,574,144 bytes

Video Bitrate: 35.43 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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 1.0) 

LPCM Audio English 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit
Commentary:

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

Subtitles English, None English (SDH), None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Criterion / Home Vision

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Audio commentary by noted film scholar Marian Keane
• Video introduction by writer-director Peter Bogdanovich
• The 1942 broadcast of the Lux Radio Theatre adaptation, performed by Barbara Stanwyck and Ray Milland
• Edith Head costume designs
• Scrapbook of original publicity materials and production stills
• Original theatrical trailer

DVD Release Date: October 16th, 2001

Keep Case
Chapters: 26

Release Information:
Studio:
Criterion

 

1.37:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 45,510,766,794 bytes

Feature: 28,205,574,144 bytes

Video Bitrate: 35.43 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• Audio commentary from 2001 featuring film professor Marian Keane
• Introduction from 2001 by filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich (8:08)
• New conversation among writer-director Preston Sturges’s biographer and son Tom Sturges; Bogdanovich; filmmakers James L. Brooks and Ron Shelton; film historian Susan King; and critics Leonard Maltin and Kenneth Turan (42:11)
• New video essay by film critic David Cairns (31:30)
• Costume designs by Edith Head (6:22)
• Lux Radio Theatre adaptation of the film from 1942 featuring Barbara Stanwyck and Ray Milland (44:46)
• Audio recording of “Up the Amazon,” a song from an unproduced stage musical based on the film (5:00)
• Trailer (1:28)
PLUS: An essay by critic Geoffrey O’Brien and a 1946 profile of Preston Sturges from LIFE magazine


Blu-ray Release Date:
July 14th, 2020
Transparent Blu-ray Case

Chapters 26

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Criterion Blu-ray (June 2020): Criterion have transferred Preston Sturges' The Lady Eve to Blu-ray. It is on a dual-layered disc with a max'ed out bitrate from a "New 4K digital restoration". This distinguishes itself with a very thick textured appearance, being marginally brighter (more detail - see Stanwyck's dress in the subtitle capture) and showing more information in the frame. It looks very film-like with well-layered contrast and is highly pleasing in-motion. 

NOTE: We have added 46 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-ray, Criterion use a linear PCM mono track (24-bit) in the original English language. It is another advancement in the film's audio and score by Charles Bradshaw (The Miracle of Morgan's Creek, Sullivan's Travels), sounding a bit deeper with more consistent dialogue. Criterion offer optional English subtitles on their Region 'A' / 'B' Blu-ray which is offered in the US and, a month later, in the UK.

The Criterion Blu-ray repeats most of the supplements from the 2001 DVD with the commentary from film professor Marian Keane, the 8-minute introduction by filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich, the 3/4 hour Lux Radio Theatre adaptation of the film broadcast on March 9th, 1942 featuring Barbara Stanwyck and Ray Milland. Duplicated is the 6-minute piece on Edith Head costume designs.

Criterion do add some new supplements. For 40-minutes recorded over online video conference in spring 2020, writer-director Preston Sturges's son Tom Sturges discusses his father's legacy with his friends Peter Bogdanovich, Susan King, Kenneth Turan, Leonard Maltin, Ron Shelton, and James L. Brooks. Very cool! There is a revealing 1/2 hour video essay by critic and filmmaker David Cairns produced by the Criterion Collection in 2020. His stuff is fabulous. Also, Grammy-nominated producer and songwriter Rick Chertoff teamed with songwriter David J. Forman to compose "Up the Amazon" as the opening number of a theatrical musical the two are developing based on The Lady Eve. The song tracks Hopsie's departure from a South American jungle to his fateful meeting with Jean aboard the cruise ship. Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks created the arrangement and perform this 5-minute audio recording of “Up the Amazon” included on the Blu-ray. There is also a trailer and the package has a liner notes booklet with an essay by critic Geoffrey O’Brien plus a 1946 profile of Preston Sturges from LIFE magazine. 

I can't imagine having to convince anyone of The Lady Eve; Fonda, Stanwyck, Preston Sturges, probably the best romantic comedy of the 40's.... and now it's on a stacked, Criterion, Blu-ray? One of the easiest recommendations of the year - you will never regret it - buy now. Your digital library is significantly weaker without it. 

Gary Tooze

 


Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC

 

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1) Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

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1) Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

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

 

 


1) Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

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

 

 


1) Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

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

 

 


1) Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

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

 

 


1) Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC  TOP

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

 

 


 

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Box Cover

  

Bonus Captures:

Distribution Criterion - Region 0 - NTSC Criterion - Region 'A' / 'B' - Blu-ray


 


 

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