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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

Directed by Frank Perry
USA 1970

 

Diary of a Mad Housewife may have done more to change the public image of the American woman than any other film in history. Carrie Snodgress (Pale Rider) plays a dissatisfied wife trapped in her townhouse existence. Her husband, played unforgettably by Richard Benjamin (Goodbye, Columbus), is the archetypal schnook and also one of the great screen monsters. Her lover (Frank Langella, Dracula) is a narcissistic creep who finishes off what her domestic life started. Wonderfully directed by Frank Perry (The Swimmer, Doc, Man on a Swing) with a screenplay by Eleanor Perry (David and Lisa, Ladybug Ladybug), Frank’s wife, based on a novel by Sue Kaufman, Diary of a Mad Housewife is a chilling black comedy that manages to be extraordinarily funny under extreme circumstances. Snodgress received an Oscar nomination for Best Actress in a Leading Role for her brilliant performance.

***

Tina Balser is a bored New York housewife-mother married to Jonathan, a pompous, social-climbing lawyer who ridicules her in front of their children, criticizing everything she does or wears. She begins an affair with George Prager, a dashing, successful and blatantly sadistic writer.

Posters

Theatrical Release: August 10th, 1970

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

Box Cover

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Bonus Captures:

Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:35:26.720        
Video

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 31,783,332,062 bytes

Feature: 29,918,251,008 bytes

Video Bitrate: 37.91 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 1554 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1554 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Commentary:

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: 31,783,332,062 bytes

Feature: 29,918,251,008 bytes

Video Bitrate: 37.91 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

NEW Audio Commentary by Screenwriter Larry Karaszewski with Film Historians Howard S. Berger and Steve Mitchell
Theatrical Trailer (2:53)


Blu-ray Release Date:
December 15th, 2020
Standard Blu-ray Case

Chapters 9

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Kino Blu-ray (December 2020): Kino have transferred Frank Perry's 1970 Diary of a Mad Housewife to Blu-ray. The 1080P image is exceptionally grainy, almost close to looking like being from 16mm. It looked very strong my system - I appreciate the grain. There are some light surface scratches but no consistent damage or bad flaws. Details tighten in the films' many close-ups. It's on a dual-layered disc with a max'ed out bitrate. This looks like a strong replication of the original theatrical release with a very film-like presentation.

NOTE: We have added 18 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-ray, Kino use a DTS-HD Master dual-mono track (16-bit) in the original English language. The film is light of effects. There is no credited score but Diary of a Mad Housewife has music and a nice selection in the opening credits. Mars Bonfire's "Ride With Me Baby" and Alice Cooper's Lay Down And Die Goodbye are utilized. Kino offer optional English subtitles on their Region 'A' Blu-ray.

The Kino Blu-ray offers a new commentary by screenwriter Larry Karaszewski with film historians Howard S. Berger and Steve Mitchell. They discuss the aggressive editing and how the film evokes Mike Nichols' The Graduate, it's vérité-like style touches, differences from the book, Carrie Snodgress' impressive performance and much more. I love listening to these guys and it always emboldens my appreciation for a film. There is also a, beat-up, trailer.

Frank Perry's Diary of a Mad Housewife is  a really good film that has been hard to access for many years. I enjoyed it as a partial comedy, partial romance and marriage-drama. Themes involve social-climbing, isolation, boredom, marital malaise, and disenchantment. I continue to like Frank Perry as a director and gained new appreciation for Carrie Snodgress in a career-defining role. The commentary is a great addition on the Kino Blu-ray. Certainly recommended especially to fans of 70's films.

Gary Tooze

 


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Box Cover

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Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

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