Jacques Demy on DVD

Discuss North American DVDs and Blu-rays or other DVD and Blu-ray-related topics.
Message
Author
User avatar
Zazou dans le Metro
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2008 10:01 am
Location: In the middle of an Elyssian Field

#51 Post by Zazou dans le Metro » Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:56 am

domino harvey wrote:I can't imagine it having subs, but if it did, it would be one of the most necessary DVD releases of all time
Well all the Tamaris releases so far have eng subs. But you're right that there's no mention anywhere on the articles about it so far.

User avatar
Lino
"Without obsession, life is nothing"
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 6:18 am
Location: Sitting End
Contact:

#52 Post by Lino » Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:21 pm

The most amazing news have arrived! I emailed Cine Tamaris about the english subs and I already got a reply this morning:
Bonsoir,

Je voudrais savoir, si possible, si le Jacques Demy 12 DVD coffret qui sortira le prochain 5 Novembre aura des sous-titres anglais?

Merci,

Lino Ramos

Portugal
Cher Lino Ramos,

Il y aura des sous-titres anglais, nous l’avons souhaité... mais uniquement sur les films, car nous n’avions ni temps, ni argent (c’est un peu synonyme !) pour sous-titrer les nombreux bonus.

RV au 5 novembre sur notre site ou sur le site d’Arte vidéo notamment (et pour le moment en PJ) !

Quant à Agnès VARDA, après la sortie de son film LES PLAGES D’AGNES (cf. PJ), programmé en salle en France en décembre prochain, après quelques festivals (dont la Mostra où elle a triomphé), nous travaillerons l’année prochaine à une intégrale, espérant pouvoir être prêts fin 2009...

Bien à vous,

Stéphanie Scanvic
p. Ciné-Tamaris
So, english subs on the movies but not on the extras (fair enough) and an Integrale Agnes Varda for 2009! How about that for the DVD scoop of 2008, hey? :D Start saving those euros, people - and yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus after all!

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

#53 Post by zedz » Sat Sep 20, 2008 10:59 pm

That tip is probably the best and worst news Domino Harvey's heard in quite a while. I'm thrilled with both coming releases. I saw some of the new Demy prints (and a luminous Jacquot de Nantes) recently and they were stunning.

User avatar
Lino
"Without obsession, life is nothing"
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 6:18 am
Location: Sitting End
Contact:

#54 Post by Lino » Sun Sep 21, 2008 3:34 pm

I've emailed Cine-Tamaris about what extras are to be included (that way I can sell my Demy DVDs with no worries about losing some very valuable extras in anticipation of the boxset). Let's see if they answer back.

User avatar
Matt
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:58 pm

#55 Post by Matt » Sun Sep 21, 2008 5:29 pm

Lino wrote:an Integrale Agnes Varda for 2009!
Just what I've been waiting for, an opportunity to buy Cléo for a fourth time. Really, all I want is Kung-fu Master and Documenteur separately.

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

#56 Post by domino harvey » Mon Sep 22, 2008 6:02 am

Considering how little Demy is represented on DVD anywhere, this is monumental. They could have stretched this out for years, but they've given it to us all in one shot. This news is so fantastic that I won't even take zedz's bait 8-)

User avatar
Lino
"Without obsession, life is nothing"
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 6:18 am
Location: Sitting End
Contact:

#57 Post by Lino » Mon Sep 22, 2008 8:34 pm

Lino wrote:I've emailed Cine-Tamaris about what extras are to be included (that way I can sell my Demy DVDs with no worries about losing some very valuable extras in anticipation of the boxset). Let's see if they answer back.
They did but hèlas, they did not tell me what they were going to be like... However, they did show me how the boxset is going to look like and by the looks of it, it's going to be packaged in slim-packs and it's a slip-on box like the Criterion Cassavetes one. Brilliant job all around!

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

#58 Post by zedz » Thu Oct 02, 2008 9:51 pm

I think this is new. At least I don't remember seeing it mentioned before: Cine-Tamaris' edition of Varda's Jacquot de Nantes, including among other extras Demy's first film from 1955, Le Sabotier du Val de Loire (25 minutes). I saw CT's 35mm restoration of Jacquot earlier this year and it was simply exquisite, so I expect this disc will be superb.

User avatar
Matt
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:58 pm

#59 Post by Matt » Thu Oct 02, 2008 10:51 pm

CT's packages are all uniformly excellent, but their transfers are not always the best.

User avatar
Lino
"Without obsession, life is nothing"
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 6:18 am
Location: Sitting End
Contact:

#60 Post by Lino » Sat Oct 04, 2008 2:25 am

Extras, extras! Flabberghasting package! It's everything you've ever hoped it could be and then more! Now I can safely sell my Demy DVDs knowing that I won't be missing a single thing.

Boxset of the year for me.

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

#61 Post by domino harvey » Sat Oct 04, 2008 2:53 am

If the extras had subs, would be a contender for best boxed set ever

User avatar
Lino
"Without obsession, life is nothing"
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 6:18 am
Location: Sitting End
Contact:

#62 Post by Lino » Sun Oct 19, 2008 1:26 am

Fnac.com has prepared a YouTube clip to promote the upcoming boxset. Take a look, it's quite fun and lively and at the end you can spot old movie posters and what seem to be the covers for the single DVDs to be included in the set.

User avatar
Lino
"Without obsession, life is nothing"
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 6:18 am
Location: Sitting End
Contact:

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#63 Post by Lino » Mon Nov 03, 2008 2:19 am

And now, Cine-Tamaris has created its own trailer to promote the upcoming boxset. By the way, mine it's already on its way! I will report back on how it looks, sounds and feels when it arrives.

User avatar
J Wilson
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 11:26 am
Contact:

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#64 Post by J Wilson » Thu Nov 06, 2008 12:37 pm

Received my copy of the Demy box this morning; it's quite a hefty box, and attractively designed as well. The outer box is a thick slipcase with the inner box having a wrap around shot of Demy with Deneuve and Dorleac on the set of ROCHEFORT. The discs are in thinpak cases with a uniform white color scheme, like the outer box. There is also a booklet of sorts, albeit in an accordion-like folded format that includes the essays and interviews and such. Naturally, I received this just before having to leave for the day, but I can't wait to take a look at the discs tonight. A thumbs up on the packaging if nothing else.

cinemartin

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#65 Post by cinemartin » Thu Nov 06, 2008 1:03 pm

Thanks! Looking forward to hearing about the transfers.

User avatar
Lino
"Without obsession, life is nothing"
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 6:18 am
Location: Sitting End
Contact:

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#66 Post by Lino » Thu Nov 06, 2008 4:23 pm

J Wilson wrote:Received my copy of the Demy box this morning; it's quite a hefty box, and attractively designed as well. The outer box is a thick slipcase with the inner box having a wrap around shot of Demy with Deneuve and Dorleac on the set of ROCHEFORT. The discs are in thinpak cases with a uniform white color scheme, like the outer box. There is also a booklet of sorts, albeit in an accordion-like folded format that includes the essays and interviews and such. Naturally, I received this just before having to leave for the day, but I can't wait to take a look at the discs tonight. A thumbs up on the packaging if nothing else.
You beat me to it! And yes, I can perfectly second everything you said, right down to not having time to check the transfers. However, I did do a cursory viewing on some of them and so far, so good. By the way, no trailers are announced but some are to be found on several of the discs. More on this amazing set later.

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#67 Post by zedz » Mon Nov 17, 2008 12:17 am

I can add more of the same: amazing set (the ridiculous 'party-streamer' booklet is sort of horrible and awesome at the same time) but I've only quickly glimpsed at a couple of transfers, and they look fine.

The two I sampled were Bay of Angels (which I'd already seen on the R1 release) and Trois places pour le 26.

It also just occurred to me that the set isn't quite "integrale", since it omits La Table tournante, his last feature directed in collaboration with Paul Grimault. It's easy to see why it was omitted, since it's much more about Grimault (it's a career retrospective), but it is delivered with Demy's lightness. Completists can find it on the French 2DVD of Le Roi et l'oiseau

EDIT:
(Slightly) more transfer information:
I did a quick comparison between these discs and the only two Demy discs I already owned and found little difference.
The Umbrellas of Cherbourg seemed to be pretty much identical to the Optimum UK disc - looked very good.
Bay of Angels looked like the same transfer, but ever so slightly better (fewer artifacts?) than the R1 edition. This may be simply a PAL / NTSC issue. Grainy in that fabulous opening shot, but good.

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#68 Post by zedz » Wed Nov 19, 2008 4:25 pm

Working my way through this set, so here are some more reports.

The subtitles on the features are very well done - complete, idoiomatic. The unsubbed extras (so far) seem to all be very short (3 minutes tops): filmmakers making a few salient points, contextual intros read out by Mathieu Demy or brief extracts of Demy himself talking about the film in question. It's generally straightforward stuff and I've been able to follow 60-70% of what's been said with my primitive French. The first substantial extra I've come across - Varda's feature-length L'Univers de Jacques Demy is subtitled.

The transfers are generally excellent, though there does seem to be a rule of thumb that films with existing transfers simply use those transfers (see below for more detail).

I'm trying to work through the films chronologically. Here's what I've seen so far:

Le Pont des Mauves / Attaque nocturne / La Ballerine (1944-53) - These three lost animated films are represented by the careful recreations generated for Jacquot de Nantes in 1990. Varda used the remnants of the films where possible (damaged frames, puppets) and Demy oversaw their authenticity. Superb transfers, though they were artfully 'aged' for the film.

Les Horizons morts (1951) - Lovely transfer of a not bad print (various inherent / lab flaws, but not particularly worn). This is such a student film, steeped in adolescent angst (romantic rejection leads to despair - but wait! - there's still hope!). Attractively shot, with arty compositions, and the sometimes incongruous 'narrative' music looks ahead to mature Demy.

Le Sabotier du Val de Loire (1955) - A beautifully shot, moving regional documentary presented here in a gorgeous, sharp and textured transfer.

Le Bel Indifferent (1957) - Stunning transfer of a fascinating film, in which Demy shows us just how much he has to offer working with colour. This self-consciously stagy rendering of a Cocteau monologue takes place in a deeply saturated red room with forest green drapes, with Jeanne Allard (in gren / black velvet) enacting the mise en scene before our eyes (she's both main actor and key element of the art direction).

Ars (1959) - Another great black-and-white transfer, and a really interesting short, with Demy taking a typical short subject ('great man' biography) and turning it into a Left Bank essay film, with the elegant visuals (tracking shots through empty streets etc.) free-associating against the narration.

Lola (1960) - Just a quick glimpse of this. An OK transfer, but it seems to be lacking in detail. It looks like a pre-existing transfer done several years ago now, but I don't have anything with which to compare it.

User avatar
Yojimbo
Joined: Fri Jul 04, 2008 10:06 am
Location: Ireland

Re:

#69 Post by Yojimbo » Wed Nov 19, 2008 6:34 pm

Lino wrote:The most amazing news have arrived! I emailed Cine Tamaris about the english subs and I already got a reply this morning:
Bonsoir,

Je voudrais savoir, si possible, si le Jacques Demy 12 DVD coffret qui sortira le prochain 5 Novembre aura des sous-titres anglais?

Merci,

Lino Ramos

Portugal
Cher Lino Ramos,

Il y aura des sous-titres anglais, nous l’avons souhaité... mais uniquement sur les films, car nous n’avions ni temps, ni argent (c’est un peu synonyme !) pour sous-titrer les nombreux bonus.

RV au 5 novembre sur notre site ou sur le site d’Arte vidéo notamment (et pour le moment en PJ) !

Quant à Agnès VARDA, après la sortie de son film LES PLAGES D’AGNES (cf. PJ), programmé en salle en France en décembre prochain, après quelques festivals (dont la Mostra où elle a triomphé), nous travaillerons l’année prochaine à une intégrale, espérant pouvoir être prêts fin 2009...

Bien à vous,

Stéphanie Scanvic
p. Ciné-Tamaris
So, english subs on the movies but not on the extras (fair enough) and an Integrale Agnes Varda for 2009! How about that for the DVD scoop of 2008, hey? :D Start saving those euros, people - and yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus after all!
Just when I thought it was safe 'to go back in the water' after availing of Deep Discount and Amazon sale offers, and pre-ordering MoC's 'L'Argent', now you tell me this!
I've been scouring all sources for 'The Model Shop' for years and, though I have all his other main films, this does look very enticing.

User avatar
Lino
"Without obsession, life is nothing"
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 6:18 am
Location: Sitting End
Contact:

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#70 Post by Lino » Wed Nov 19, 2008 9:55 pm

It is more than enticing: it's essential. Oh, and zedz: the docu on the Demoiselles de Rochefort disc (Les demoiselles ont eu 25 ans, directed by Varda and running aprox. an hour) is also subtitled. And you're right, most of the unsubbed extras are not that important to miss out on for non-french speaking buyers.

I'm currently devouring the set in a non-chronological way. My mood of each day dictates what I'm going to watch next and so far, it's working brilliantly. Watched The Pied Piper the other day for the first time ever and enjoyed it immensely. What a bleak little movie it is. The great thing about Demy's movies is that you can always look at them from at least two different angles, these being the beauty of the images on offer and the underlying social commentary.

Worthy of note is the fact that A Slightly Pregnant Man has a choice of choosing between the original french track and the english dubbed one. This also applies to The Pied Piper, though vice-versa. Oh, and I can now say that I changed my mind about Parking: though not one of his best movies, it's now no longer in my mind as one of his worst (has he even made a bad one? think not).

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#71 Post by domino harvey » Wed Nov 19, 2008 10:32 pm

Do the dubbed films still have English subs?

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#72 Post by zedz » Thu Nov 20, 2008 9:17 pm

domino harvey wrote:Do the dubbed films still have English subs?
No.

From what I see, there are four films in the set with English audio tracks: Model Shop, The Pied Piper, Lady Oscar and L'evenement le plus important. . .. None seem to have English subs, but that's only a major issue with the last one, since English is the original language for the other three (The Pied Piper having, according to the documentation, two versions originales).

I'm also assuming that L'evenement le plus important. . . is partly in English (haven't seen it yet), since the French version also includes a French subtitle track to cover the non-French bits (which I couldn't locate on a quick skim through it).

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#73 Post by domino harvey » Thu Nov 20, 2008 11:14 pm

L'evenement le plus important
That's a shame on principle, but if any Demy film was going to be ruined like that, I couldn't have done a better job of selecting the doomed title myself. Thanks for the info, I can't wait to pick up this set after Christmas

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#74 Post by zedz » Sun Nov 23, 2008 4:58 pm

Further reports:

I forgot to mention La Luxure last time, Demy's episode of Les sept peches capitaux. A charming, discursive film (with a great pre-psychedelic vision of Hell) in a sharp transfer.

Les Demoiselles de Rochefort, probably my favourite Demy, looks great at a glance. As Lino noted, Varda's fine hour-long documentary has English subs and a good transfer, considering some of it was shot on video.

Model Shop: I'd been wanting to see this for some time, but it's a bit of a debacle. It has some of the qualities of Zabriskie Point, but it's both not as bad as Antonioni's film and not as good. Demy offers a great outsider's vision of LA (but not as visionary as Antonioni's America) with a nice modish soundtrack (by Spirit, who also appear in the film, but apart from Jay Ferguson they can't seem to get off the screen fast enough), but the film is scuppered by a mediocre script (that never reaches the depths of Zabriskie Point) and poor performances (ditto, but squared).

Gary Lockwood isn't particularly bad - not in a Mark Frechette way, certainly - but he isn't particularly good either, and the film hangs on his every bland gesture and line-reading. Anouk Aimee is similarly okay, but a rather thin approximation of her previous turn as Lola, and there's nil chemistry with Lockwood. The film is filled with cliches. Lockwood is that icon of sixties alienation, the disaffected architect, and is completely unconvincing as such, and the film is full of other cookie-cutter symbols of contemporary malaise, trotted out on cue but then just lying there limply: the paradise-paving parking lot, the aspirational colour television. At least the pounding derrick on the front steps has some visual interest.

Lockwood's girlfriend is the character most shamelessly abused by the film's callow politics. She has some truly unholy mouthfuls to deliver and is utterly inadequate to the cruel challenge.

The transfer is sharp, and comes from a flawless print, but it's very red. That's clearly intended to some degree - Demy places fire-engine red objects in many frames - but the skin-tones seem unfortunate, with Lockwood looking sunburnt rather than tanned throughout.

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

Re: Jacques Demy on DVD

#75 Post by zedz » Mon Nov 24, 2008 4:33 pm

I knew my kevyip was enchanted.

A day after watching Model Shop I happened to watch Jerzy Skolimowski's 1964 Rysopis / Identification Marks: None and was amazed to find that Demy's film is essentially a remake of it.

SPOILERS AHOY, I guess, but neither film is primarily about its plot. Both films follow their disaffected male protagonists on their last day of freedom before being drafted into the military (and they both, somewhat improbably, find out about their imminent drafting during the course of the film's events). Skolimowski's timeframe is more compressed (morning and afternoon) than Demy's (24 hours).

In both films the protagonist has dropped out of his chosen career path (architect, museum director - though by the time Demy made his film the 'dropout' had become a cultural cliche) and is living off / with a woman to whom he isn't married (both women work in the advertising industry, but in different capacities). The film also chronicles the conveniently coincidental disintegration of that relationship, as the woman's affections have been transferred to other men.

Both protagonists amble around their town, doing variations on the same things:
- they run into old friends;
- they borrow money from them (100 zlotych, 100 dollars) which they end up giving away;
- they call their mothers from somebody else's business phone (and lie to them about what they're doing with their lives);
- they stalk and confront a model that they've impulsively become obsessed with (this strand is expanded significantly in Demy's film to make way for the Lola connections);
- they lose the thing to which they're most attached (a dog, a car).

Stylistically, however, the two films are completely different. Skolimowski's film is a wild ride in raw black and white, pushing Nouvelle Vague experimentation to extremes and often slipping into a first-person mode. It's also considerably shorter and much more successful on its own terms, unburdened by 'big statement' aspirations / expectations.

Post Reply