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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

Directed by Albert Lewin
UK 1951

 

Pandora and The Flying Dutchman is writer, producer and director Albert Lewin's lushly romantic Technicolor visualisation of the often-told legend of the sea. A glamorous Ava Gardner is Pandora, who falls hard for the charismatic James Mason as Hendrik, a 17th-century seaman eternally condemned to sail the oceans.

Ava Gardner stars as Pandora Reynolds, a predatory creature who destroys the lives of all men who've been unfortunate enough to fall in love with her. Enter Hendrick van der Zee (James Mason), a mystical figure who proves to be Pandora's match. It turns out that van der Zee is the legendary 17th Flying Dutchman, whose spirit is doomed to wander the earth until he is able to find a woman willing to love him with all her heart -- and thereby sacrifice her own life.

***

The story is centered on two mythical archetypes--Pandora (Gardner), an American chanteuse in a small colony of expatriates in Esperanza, a village on Spain’s Costa Brava circa 1930, who lures men to their doom, and the Flying Dutchman (Mason), a mysterious and taciturn sea captain who arrives one day. Condemned many centuries ago for the murder of his innocent bride and for blasphemy, he’s obliged to sail alone in his ship for all eternity unless he finds a woman willing to die for him. (This film is almost precisely contemporary with Orson Welles’ Othello, and there’s an uncanny echo of a shot in which Othello approaches Desdemona in her bed, when we see Mason in a flashback approaching his own bride).

From Jonathan Rosenbaum's article for DVDBeaver located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: February 21st, 1951

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Comparison:

Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray vs. Cohen Media - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

  

  

Bonus Captures:

Distribution Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray Cohen Media - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 2:03:34.073         

Pandora: 2:03:57.250

The Living Idol: 1:41:02.473

Video

1.33:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 37,471,315,571 bytes

Feature: 31,361,243,136 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.953 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Pandora:

1.33:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 39,483,949,644 bytes

Feature: 30,992,357,376 bytes

Video Bitrate: 30.00 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

The Living Idol:

2.35:1 1080PSingle-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 22,540,238,854 bytes

Feature: 22,073,579,520 bytes

Video Bitrate: 26.00 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate Kino Pandora Blu-ray:

Bitrate Cohen Pandora Blu-ray:

Bitrate The Living Idol Blu-ray:

Audio LPCM Audio English 2304 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bit

Pandora:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1622 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1622 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)

The Living Idol:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1557 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1557 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)

Subtitles None English (SDH), None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Kino

 

1.33:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 37,471,315,571 bytes

Feature: 31,361,243,136 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.953 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• Vintage (1947) documentary El Torero de Cordoba (17:26 in HD!)
• Alternate opening titles (2:26 - unrestored in HD!)
• Restoration Comparison (5:49 in HD!)
• Stills Gallery (Film and Production)
• Trailers (U.S., U.S. abridged, UK restoration re-release 2010 in HD!)


Blu-ray Release Date:
August 3rd, 2010
Standard Blu-ray Case

Chapters 16

Release Information:
Studio:
Kino

 

Pandora:

1.33:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 39,483,949,644 bytes

Feature: 30,992,357,376 bytes

Video Bitrate: 30.00 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

The Living Idol:

2.35:1 1080PSingle-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 22,540,238,854 bytes

Feature: 22,073,579,520 bytes

Video Bitrate: 26.00 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• Alternate Opening Credits (2:28)
• Hedda Hopper Trailer (3:00)
• Original Trailer (2:02)
• Restoration Trailer (0:55)
• Restoration Comparison (4:51)
• Death of Manolete (17:27)

• The Living Idol trailer (1:44)


Blu-ray Release Date:
April 21st, 2020
Transparent Blu-ray Case inside cardboard sleeve

Chapters 12 / 10

 

 

Comments:

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

The Kino 'full resolution' captures are lost.

ADDITION: Kino Blu-ray (July 2020): Cohen Media have transferred Albert Lewin's magical 1951 Pandora and the Flying Dutchman to their own Blu-ray. Plus they have added a second disc of the director's 1957 rarely-seen The Living Idol on it's own single-layered Blu-ray (see captures at the bottom of this review.) 

We always had some suspicions about Kino's 10-year old Blu-ray of Pandora and the Flying Dutchman and the claims that it was "... extensively improved 35mm Technicolor restoration (presented by The Film Foundation, George Eastman House & Douris UK Ltd.)"

David told us in email about the Kino Blu-ray: "The whole image to me looks "wrong" in the new transfer. Jonathan Rosenbaum ahs also commented questioning the lightiness of the image compared to his memories of it in 35mm. Overall I get the impression this is a restoration which seems to have been done on the cheap, or with far from ideal elements (I.e. no three strip negs or even YCM seps) from which to rebuild a new internegative. Things like the ugly green of sea shots and the weird shade of nursery pea green on the walls of the villa which are contrasted with various reds and lilacs simply don't like like the sorts of things Cardiff would shoot, unless he were going for a sense of menace in the sequences, but the primary color values in this transfer feel "dirty" to me and the entire image throughout seems to have an undercoat of bleaching. I have to say I believe the Park Circus (which IS fixed Region B) is identical to the Kino. " (Thanks David!)

The Cohen Blu-ray also states "Restored by George Eastman House in cooperation with The Douris Corporation.
Restoration funded by The Film Foundation, the Rome Film Festival, and the Franco-American Cultural Fund (a partnership of the Directors Guild of America, Societe des Auteurs, Compositeurs et Editeurs de Musique, the Motion Picture Association of America, and the Writers Guild of America, West).
"

But they also add: "The color grading of this 2019 PANDORA & THE FLYING DUTCHMAN restoration is significantly different from previous home video releases. Technicolor historians at the George Eastman Museum used a vintage 1951 dye-transfer Technicolor print from Martin Scorsese's personal collection and a period 16MM IB Technicolor print for color reference in order to more closely replicate the true look of an original release print. No digital sharpening was utilized.
2019 restoration completed by Cohen Film Collection, with the support of OCS.
Additional color correction and digital clean-up performed by The Eastman Museum. Special thanks to Prasad Corp. and Audio Mechanics for their assistance with this restoration.
"

So what we see is that the beginning 10+ minutes of the Cohen 1080P HD presentation is bathed in yellow-golden hues (which I cannot account for there accuracy), but the rest of the presentation is highly notable for its bolder colors and richer contrast. Interiors may have a shade of blue-green leaning but overall it looks magnificent - a huge step-forward from the 2010 Kino Blu-ray with brighter and more vibrant colors. It does appears to be slightly cropped on the right and bottom edges showing a sliver more on the left side. In side by side comparison the Kino looks vertically stretched (thinner faces) with the Cohen offering a slightly different appearance. I lean to the Cohen being more accurate. Texture seems less-prominent - related to background and looking a shade clunky, but I see no evidence of digitization. Pandora and the Flying Dutchman does have the cinematography of the great Jack Cardiff.

NOTE: We have added 86 more high resolution (1920 X 1080) Blu-ray captures of Pandora and The Flying Dutchman and 42 high resolution Blu-ray captures of The Living Idol (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE  

On their Blu-ray, Cohen, strangely, offer only a DTS-HD Master 5.1 surround track (24-bit) in the original English language. The film had mono and that should have, at least been an option. The faux surround is not a distraction and there is some depth in the car scenes on the beach.  It is another advancement in the film's audio and score by Alan Rawsthorne (The Captive Heart, The Man Who Never Was) plus the beautiful How Am I to Know? sung by Ava Gardner at the piano is marvelous. Some may recognize the Sailor's Song based on "Canticas de Santa Maria" and Chopin's Etude #1 In A Flat, Op. 25/1, CT 26. All sounding quite rich and consistent. Where the Kino offered no subtitles there are optional English (SDH) subtitles on the Cohen Region 'A' Blu-ray.

The Cohen Blu-ray has some of the same supplements as the Kino; the 17-minute Death of Manolete documentary - recounting the career of Manuel Rodriguez Manolete, the celebrated Spanish Bullfighter who was the inspiration for the ill-fates character Montalvo in Pandora and the Flying Dutchman. Cohen also offer the alternate opening credits sequence, and original, 'Hedda Hopper' and restoration trailers plus a restoration comparison but, sadly, no commentary. I can image that many would love to dive into the unspoken meanings while simultaneously interpreting the mythologies present in Pandora and the Flying Dutchman. There is the second Blu-ray of The Living Idol. It is also restored but has light scratches and speckles in most frames (see the very bottom of this review for more flagrant - but frame-specific damage.) Other than that The Living Idol - a mystery / horror - is a very odd-but-cool film and looks pretty decent in 1080P. I had never seen it before. Plenty of depth and great colors in the 2.35:1 widescreen. There is a trailer as an extra and it also offers optional English subtitles.  The Cohen package offers a 12-page leaflet with color photos, chapter stops and notes on the restoration.

Albert Lewin's magical and mysterious Pandora and the Flying Dutchman is a timeless film. It has Ava Gardner at her most beautiful - captured angelically by Jack Cardiff's camera. The film offers one of the more unique stories of its (or any) era. It stands as a mythological-romance -fantasy of which there are few to compare. The new Cohen restoration Blu-ray does wonders for the film's hypnotic allure. It as a strong visual influence and impact on the viewer. The surround option and lack of commentary are not really satisfied by the second disc inclusion of The Living Idol, but it does make for a 'B' start to a double-feature film night. Even with imperfections, this is one of my favorite Blu-ray packages of this year - the only way to see the essential Pandora and the Flying Dutchman in your home theater. That is a strong recommendation!  

Gary Tooze

 


Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 

Cohen Media - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Cohen Media - Region 'A' - Blu-ray 2 (The Living Idol)


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

 

NOTE: Sadly, the Kino 'full resolution' captures are lost.

 

Subtitle Sample - Cohen Media - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

 


1) Editions Montparnasse - Region 2 (France) - PAL TOP
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Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Editions Montparnasse - Region 2 (France) - PAL TOP
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1) Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP
2) Cohen Media - Region 'A' -
Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP
2) Cohen Media - Region 'A' -
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1) Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP
2) Cohen Media - Region 'A' -
Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP
2) Cohen Media - Region 'A' -
Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP
2) Cohen Media - Region 'A' -
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1) Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP
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1) Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray TOP
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More full resolution (1920 X 1080) Blu-ray Captures for DVDBeaver Patreon Supporters HERE

 

Cohen Media - Region 'A' - Blu-ray 2 (The Living Idol)

Directed by Albert Lewin
Mexico / USA 195
7

Several mysterious deaths are attributed to an ancient stone idol.

Supernatural romantic drama about a girl of Indian blood who is troubled by racial memories of sacrifice to the jaguar-spirit of evil.

***

Filmmaker Albert Lewin's fascination with erotic exotica reaches a pinnacle in The Living Idol. James Robertson Justice plays Dr. Alfred Stones, an archeologist working in Mexico. It is Dr. Stones' contention that Indian maiden Juanita (Lilliane Montevecchi) is the reincarnation of an Aztec princess, sacrificed centuries earlier to appease the "jaguar gods". To prove his thesis, the good doctor lets loose a jaguar to see what happens when it sinks its claws into poor Juanita.

Excerpt from Hal Erickson's review located HERE

Posters

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

 

Damage Marks

 

(CLICK to ENLARGE)

 

 

 
Box Cover

  

  

Bonus Captures:

Distribution Kino - Region FREE - Blu-ray Cohen Media - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

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Gary Tooze

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