It is currently Mon Jan 22, 2018 3:47 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 126 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 9:48 am 
User avatar

Joined: Mon Dec 22, 2008 7:47 pm
Location: Scotland
(First of all, great to see Schreck and yourself back!)

I personally haven't picked up the Boudu Blu as I figured Criterion would be releasing both the longer and shorter cut (perhaps) on Blu-ray as well, and it's not like Park Circus have released a better Blu-ray than any rival release yet... Perhaps 2012?


Top
 Profile  
 

 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 10:06 am 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 1:56 pm
Location: Dublin
By the way if Criterion do upgrade to Blu with this resto, they could also let us have the full Renoir/Simon Cineastes de Notre Temps episode rather than just an excerpt... That would justify a double dip!...


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 6:28 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 8:01 pm
Location: WellyYeller
John I was perfectly happy with the PC disc for the image quality at least (sublime delivery of differing light textures as ellips says), and I didn't reallyfeel much need for context (I have so much context sitting on the shelves as Im sure many of us do.)
Two things about the transfer - it's a remarkably low bitrate - less than 5000kb/s and the movie folder is under 21 gig. So any upgrade to dual layer would be even more gorgeous.
And in the restored one minute of footage in the library - Boudu spits and Lestingois and he have a series of exchanges like "You just spat", "No I didn't", "yes you did" etc. Then Boudu picks out a copy of Zola's La Physiologie de la Mariage from the shelf, declares "ah Zola!" and then spits on that!!... This is a scene that's been missing since 1932 (presumably a censorhip cut) and it's incredible. But Park Circus doesn seem to know or care about it so there is no subtitling for the half dozen or so lines of dialogue over a full minute!

So yes Criterion will do it better.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 8:21 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:35 pm
*grits teeth at hearing about the missing subtitles* At least I'll know what's happening in that sequence. And it's a film about physicality anyway. I've only ever seen the Optimum DVD which was a revelation in its time, but looked soggy as all hell last time I watched.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 3:45 am 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 1:56 pm
Location: Dublin
Sometimes subtitlers work from existing dialogue lists provided by sales agents/distributors. It is possible that in this case this restored scene was not included on such a list, but it's a lazy and unpardonable omission nevertheless...


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 6:05 am 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 6:20 pm
Location: Worthing
ellipsis7 wrote:
Sometimes subtitlers work from existing dialogue lists provided by sales agents/distributors. It is possible that in this case this restored scene was not included on such a list, but it's a lazy and unpardonable omission nevertheless...

I can't believe they don't get someone to sit down and watch the authored disc from beginning to end to flag up these issues. In addition to my own DVD productions (where I do this personally, as I don't trust anyone else), I do freelance QC work from time to time, and every single release I've handled has had a significant problem that wasn't spotted at the authoring stage, whether it's the wrong aspect ratio, subtitles out of sync or missing, etc.

The fact that in most cases it's easy to see why these things happen makes it harder to excuse when they're not spotted by the people who should be keeping an eye on things - and the authoring house shouldn't have the final say.

To be fair, some problems are genuinely impossible to spot at the production stage - for instance, the issue with the BFI's The Leopard that led to a recall occurred at the pressing stage after the master had been properly QCed, and it's clearly not realistic to expect to do another round of QC after the final pressing, since it should be identical to the signed-off master. But such situations are very much in the minority.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 6:47 am 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 8:01 pm
Location: WellyYeller
But Michael, it seems they just do!

More points to come. But honestly the , err, oversight, is completely astonishing.

Even more astonishing is that this was apparently never noticed before now.

I just gasp at this stuff.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 6:59 am 
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:35 pm
What's weird is that they must have had to adjust the subtitle timing, otherwise the subtitles would have fallen out of sync after the restored sequence*. How do you miss an error you've partially corrected for?

*Still haven't seen, please tell me the film doesn't fall out of sync at this point.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 7:15 am 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 8:01 pm
Location: WellyYeller
John, no. That's not the point... at all

The print and encode are all being done at 24 fps/real movie speed. So there are no synching issues FROM OLD pal DVDs.

The point, if any is that any range of idx/srt and ancillary files for these commercial releases should be done at point of mux.

Hell, I can do a fucking re synched sub file (any format), or write an srt file and timecode it, or change the fucking frame rate to rescan at 25 or 29.736 fps. THat's easy. In fact I did just that for my own remux. But what the hell are Park Circus doing?

Most egregious of all, why the hell did no one else pick up the Gaumont licence?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2011 8:18 am 
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:35 pm
My point is not the difficulty of changing subtitles, but the fact that it had to be done. Somebody had to correct the subtitles timing to compensate for the added minute of footage - and yet they didn't say hey, wait. And I've probably missed your point again, in which case ignore this stupid post.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2011 7:14 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 8:01 pm
Location: WellyYeller
Just for clarity (my last post was a mess) I think Ellipsis is right - they were working from an existing "real time" dialogue sheet but of course this was the first English friendly version of the restoration so the extra one minute at approx 61' doesn't have any translation. Anyone with elementary French can fill it in of couse but that's not the point. I was doing a backup rip so I did my own and muxed them in.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Sun Dec 18, 2011 4:34 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 8:16 am
I agree with the praise the transfer is getting in this thread. Yes, it's "only" a BD25, but the film isn't very long. I actually got a bitrate of 29860 kbs for the video according to BD Info when I tested the specifications.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 2:45 am 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2008 10:14 am
Location: Third-row-center-seat (more often couch, actually)
Le Bled (1929) is now available on Gaumont "à la demande" series - actually not "upon demand" at all, it's just that some people at Gaumont randomly dig out things from their vaults, some of them already released a dozen times including much better versions, some real crap like 3rd-rate French comedies of back then, but, luckily, some sorely missed films whose copyright they happen to retain, like a few missing ones by Yves Robert, Max Ophuls, Marcel Carné - and this last Renoir silent, a true rarity even in Renoir retrospectives.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Feb 28, 2014 9:47 am 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2005 4:22 am
Location: NYC
I finally saw one of Renoir's Hollywood films. Two actually: The Woman on the Beach and This Land Is Mine.

The latter is actually on Jonathan Rosenbaum's "alternative" top 100 list of American films - I remember first seeing that list thinking I'd never see most of them since so many were unfamiliar and seemingly unavailable. Now I've seen all but nine of them.

The former was fascinating almost right off the bat - it's a kick to see Renoir string together dreamy images like Jean Cocteau. But the studio meddling is painfully obvious, and the dialogue, much of which was apparently redone and shoved into the film after a terrible preview screening, can be hard to sit through. The worst passages seem to go on forever, especially when it's holding on a fairly bland two-shot close-up. Once you know the plot, it's probably worth revisiting with the sound off and speeding through the expository scenes, just so you can concentrate on what Renoir's doing visually - it can be pretty great but still frustrating that there isn't a great film built around those elements.

This Land Is Mine is probably the kind of film Hollywood expected from Renoir after getting to know his work through La Grande Illusion. I wasn't sure what to expect - it's been heavily criticized as being dated, but obviously it has some passionate defenders. It's not a great film, it's too uneven due to some clumsy elements, but if you can look past those, there's still some wonderful stuff there, beginning with the opening scene that sets up the movie.

It's a film about occupied life in France, and of course it's going to be slick compared to, say, Léon Morin - as to be expected for a '40s Hollywood studio film. But Renoir works his usual wonders with the relationships between characters, and even when a few of the performances seem wrong for this picture (particularly the mother), the film can hold a lot of weight when it ties these relationships to the plot and Renoir is able to sketch out the personal struggles shading every conflict.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2015 1:59 pm 

Joined: Sun Apr 10, 2011 11:12 am
I haven't seen it reported here yet, but both La Nuit du Carrefour and Chotard & Cie were released on DVD in France via Rene Chateau earlier this year. I haven't been able to find any reviews.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 12:11 am 
User avatar

Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2014 10:52 pm
Location: Canada
Calvin wrote:
I haven't seen it reported here yet, but both La Nuit du Carrefour and Chotard & Cie were released on DVD in France via Rene Chateau earlier this year. I haven't been able to find any reviews.
I don't know if it means anything, but they're not listed on amazon.fr - the company's releases usually are.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:15 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Sep 20, 2009 5:23 am
Location: Florida
Probably not. It took a while for La Religieuse to get listed on Amazon some years back.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Sun Apr 17, 2016 4:12 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 4:04 pm
HerrSchreck wrote:
Orson Welles was talking about the studio system, and how Fox/Zanuck emasculated Renoir... to the point that they assigned him Irving Pichel.. as a liason-- meaning that while making the film (I believe it was Swamp Water) Renoir was told that he may only speak to Pichel, and Pichel would then speak to the cast.

Anyway Welles (this was definitely around the period of his wine commercials for E & J Gallo) said that the people who thrived in the studio were people who wanted to make the kind of films that the studios wanted to make. And that those who wanted to make something different had a very difficult time of it (sad as Welles of course was the epitome of this) in Hollywood.

Then he went on to talk specifically about Renoir (the interview was "about" Renoir and the above quote was leadup to the coming quote, which is the point of this post), saying "..someone like Jean Renoir-- who I think is the greatest, ever, had a very Very Difficult Time. Hollywood studios did not want a Jean Renoir movie; the heads of the studios didn't want a Jean Renoir movie even if it made money and was a big success."

That statement-- the final, boldfaced line-- just struck me from my scalp to my toes, as one of the most incredibly sad things I'd ever heard about Hollywood. The man is not talking about "the studios were risk averse, and stayed away from formal experiments as they never made money." Renoir didn't make "formal experiments" or "arty art films". His films were by and large (Regle excepted) moneymakers, and vastly beloved in Europe, and some even here in the US (ie La G. Illusion). He was generally like any other of the pool of expat filmmakers in the US coming from France, Germany, UK etc... only better.

You can take the statement-- or confirmation-- of what we all know about what happened to Renoir in the USA as further confirmation of what has already been written, and I guess its old news. But essentially it seems the essence of "they don't want a successful Jean Renoir film" is... basically the equivalent of a sign that says "The Real Thing Not Welcomed Here." Because I guess the real thing-- or a kind of real thing-- could not be construed as Studio Product, a result of more than one Guiding Hand.


If true, this is really a disgrace.

Tommaso wrote:
Zanuck also didn't have any understanding for Renoir's techniques. In one of his infamous memos on "Swamp Water" (which can be read in the aforementioned Bergstrom article), Zanuck states for example:
"You are wasting entirely too much time on non-essential details in your background" or "You used four different angles to get over the action with the sheriff on the porch. This could have been covered with one or two angles at the most." It seems that Zanuck objected against precisely those things that make Renoir so great in many people's view: deep focus photography and the attention it must receive, the almost abstract organisation of space as in "Regle du Jeu", all the care for seemingly unimportant details of the mise en scene in general, and of course the complexity of the characterization.


This reminds me somewhat of the producer notes to Ridley Scott on Blade Runner, which scorned him for putting so much time, money and effort into composing scenes, which turned out to be the film's greatest strength, and the reason it is so beloved today.

I have only seen a few of Renoir's films, but it's instantly clear what a master he was in blending art with entertainment.

A Day in the Country (1936) - This film is exuberance, and a heartfelt homage to nature, and our place in it. This film snuck up on me and genuinely delighted me. I have read that the film is "unfinished" but it does not seem to be lacking anything at all.

La Bete Humaine (1938) - The human beast! This is one the craziest pictures I have seen in a while. These old French films are kind of interesting in that every single man is a potential rapist and psycho, and every female is only one step away from being accosted. If a woman is seen sitting alone in public, and no one else is around, some male is surely lurking in the corners ready to leap out and attack her. I guess this is a play on stereotypes, and maybe back then, in France, this is how things were! Who knows. In any case, the Human Beast is one of the more exhilarating films from this era, and certainly one of the best made. The camera techniques used to film from moving trains were decades ahead of their time. When you watch La Bete Humaine, it looks like a film that must have been shot in the 1950s, the blocking and camera techniques are so far ahead of their time. Even between the years of 1937 and 1938, it's very easy to spot how drastically the train-based camera techniques improved between Grand Illusion and Human Beast. But while I speak about camera techniques, it's obviously the human story that excels most of all in this era of films from Renoir.

I'm not sure that I can add much of substance to what has already been written about La Grande Illusion or The Rules of the Game, both of which I loved, especially the latter. I want to rewatch Rules soon, because it doesn't seem like the kind of film you can learn everything about in one viewing.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 3:39 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2005 4:22 am
Location: NYC
Just out of curiosity, has anyone seen the new restoration of The Crime of Monsieur Lange currently playing at Film Forum? I ask because I caught what was supposed to be the same restoration at the NYFF and it looked awful, enough that I have a tough time believing another viewer can see the same thing and say "that looks great!" Then I came across Jim Hoberman's review in the NY Times where he writes "with its splendid 4K restoration, 'Monsieur Lange' looks brand-new." Were we looking at the same film? It's a masterpiece by the way, so I'm glad people can see it when it was so difficult to find for a long time, but going by what I've seen in recent years, the source elements known to have survived are clearly subpar, and the restorers seemed to have gone overboard with the clean-up and grain management in a futile attempt to make it look better than it can possibly look.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 6:49 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 8:01 pm
Location: WellyYeller
It was screened at the last night of Ritrovato in Bologna. to a packed house. I thought the restroation to that point was OK but needed some further work. A guy from Canal did an intro and talked on and on (and on) for far too long about how difficult it all was because they had no original elements, nol OCN or nitrate first gen 35mm or even lavenders, etc but this is hardly the first 30s film to have these issues. Some of it was gorgoues, some of it (I think there is one minute or so of previously lost or cut footage) is dupey, and some wides are noticeably soft. I got the impression this 4K was the final product. I wish they would do some more work on it. I also understood it will get a BD release early 2018. A lot of us (including me) think it's his masterpiece so continuing to work on it would not go astray. Wait until you see what Eisenschitz has achieved with all the Vigos, it's simply unbelievably beautiful.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:05 am 
User avatar

Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2009 11:58 am
Location: Chicago, IL
hearthesilence wrote:
Just out of curiosity, has anyone seen the new restoration of The Crime of Monsieur Lange currently playing at Film Forum? I ask because I caught what was supposed to be the same restoration at the NYFF and it looked awful, enough that I have a tough time believing another viewer can see the same thing and say "that looks great!" Then I came across Jim Hoberman's review in the NY Times where he writes "with its splendid 4K restoration, 'Monsieur Lange' looks brand-new." Were we looking at the same film? It's a masterpiece by the way, so I'm glad people can see it when it was so difficult to find for a long time, but going by what I've seen in recent years, the source elements known to have survived are clearly subpar, and the restorers seemed to have gone overboard with the clean-up and grain management in a futile attempt to make it look better than it can possibly look.

I saw this the other night at the Siskel, and I agree with you that it left a lot to be desired. I'm not remotely educated in these matters, of course, but I still found myself wondering what exactly it was I was looking at, because it didn't look like it came from a film source. At the same time, though, it looks too old and worn to be anything else. So I guess I would agree that it looked digitally overscrubbed and flat, for a lack of a better word; it was simply missing that depth that comes from film, even with battered old prints, which to me is often compromised when projected digitally but not to this extent. As david hare points out, this is hardly the first restoration of an older film with poor surviving elements, and I just don't think this is how something like this is supposed to look?

As for the film itself ... I wish I had been in a different state of mind, because I feel like I really missed the boat on it. But I'd been sick the past couple of weeks, and I probably should have waited a couple of days longer to get over it but didn't want to miss it. Kind of a wasted opportunity and I regret it.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 10:20 am 
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 18, 2011 9:37 am
Brian C wrote:
hearthesilence wrote:
Just out of curiosity, has anyone seen the new restoration of The Crime of Monsieur Lange currently playing at Film Forum? I ask because I caught what was supposed to be the same restoration at the NYFF and it looked awful, enough that I have a tough time believing another viewer can see the same thing and say "that looks great!" Then I came across Jim Hoberman's review in the NY Times where he writes "with its splendid 4K restoration, 'Monsieur Lange' looks brand-new." Were we looking at the same film? It's a masterpiece by the way, so I'm glad people can see it when it was so difficult to find for a long time, but going by what I've seen in recent years, the source elements known to have survived are clearly subpar, and the restorers seemed to have gone overboard with the clean-up and grain management in a futile attempt to make it look better than it can possibly look.

I saw this the other night at the Siskel, and I agree with you that it left a lot to be desired. I'm not remotely educated in these matters, of course, but I still found myself wondering what exactly it was I was looking at, because it didn't look like it came from a film source. At the same time, though, it looks too old and worn to be anything else. So I guess I would agree that it looked digitally overscrubbed and flat, for a lack of a better word; it was simply missing that depth that comes from film, even with battered old prints, which to me is often compromised when projected digitally but not to this extent. As david hare points out, this is hardly the first restoration of an older film with poor surviving elements, and I just don't think this is how something like this is supposed to look?

As for the film itself ... I wish I had been in a different state of mind, because I feel like I really missed the boat on it. But I'd been sick the past couple of weeks, and I probably should have waited a couple of days longer to get over it but didn't want to miss it. Kind of a wasted opportunity and I regret it.

Nothing worse than going to a theater and not being in the mood for a film! This has happened to me too many times.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:15 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2005 12:56 am
It can be a pain to get to the Siskel Film Center in Chicago in the winter. By the time I've marched to the El, waited for the train in freezing weather, walked through falling snow from the train to the theater, marched up the long stairs, and then waited in their charmless overlit lobby, I can be in no shape to watch some lengthy art-film masterpiece. I once went to some lengths, despite being under the weather, to see Oliveira's rare Doomed Love, a film I'd been wanting to see for years, (I even left work early etc.) and fell asleep within ten minutes of the film starting. :(


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:36 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2009 11:58 am
Location: Chicago, IL
Sounds like you just don't like winter - the Siskel is as close to the L as any other movie theater in the city that I can think of, with the Red Line being literally right outside and even the Blue Line being only a block and a half away (and even that can be mitigated by cutting through Block 37 so you only have to cross the street and walk half a block outside). God help you if you ever try to get to Doc Films in the snow!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Jean Renoir
PostPosted: Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:51 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2005 12:56 am
Are you Chicagoshaming me? I was exaggerating the distance of the Siskel from the train (although the Purple Line is a bit farther away IIRC). But there's the walk to the El from where I worked, a long haul if it's -2ºF and you're sick. My point is just that sometimes circumstances lead you to not be in the mood to watch a film you desperately wanted to see.

Also, you can drive to Doc Films! (You can drive to the Film Center too, if you're willing to spend > $20 on parking.)


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 126 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group




This site is not affiliated with The Criterion Collection