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141 - Children of Paradise


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#1 Lawrence

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Posted 26 February 2009 - 12:49 PM

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CHILDREN OF PARADISE
Marcel Carné

France • 1945 • 190 minutes • Black and White • 1.33:1 • French
Poetic realism reaches sublime heights with Children of Paradise (Les enfants du paradis), the ineffably witty tale of a woman loved by four different men. Deftly entwining theater, literature, music, and design, director Marcel Carné and screenwriter Jacques Prévert resurrect the tumultuous world of nineteenth-century Paris, teeming with hucksters and aristocrats, thieves and courtesans, pimps and seers.


DISC FEATURES
SPECIAL EDITION DOUBLE-DISC SET

  • New digital transfer
  • Commentary by film scholars Brian Stonehill and Charles Affron
  • Video introduction by director Terry Gilliam
  • Restoration demonstration
  • Jacques Prévert's film treatment
  • Production designs by Alexandre Trauner
  • Production stills gallery
  • Filmographies for Marcel Carné and Jacques Prévert
  • U.S. theatrical trailer
  • New and improved English subtitle translation


#2 Lawrence

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Posted 26 February 2009 - 12:49 PM

NOTES:


#3 cfkane

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Posted 24 April 2012 - 09:35 AM

Just saw that a new restoration of this will be playing at the Castro Theatre in San Francisco May 19-21. Maybe a BD upgrade will be coming soon. I will be in San Francisco at that time and may go, never seen the film, perhaps that's the best way to see it.
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#4 clydefro

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 11:52 PM

NY Times put September for Criterion's BD re-release of this. I've been waiting a long while to see the film, as a big fan of the Carne and Prevert collaborations. Three hours involving clowns and mimes and what not just hasn't yet proven to be persuasive enough.

#5 cfkane

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 07:52 AM

NY Times put September for Criterion's BD re-release of this. I've been waiting a long while to see the film, as a big fan of the Carne and Prevert collaborations. Three hours involving clowns and mimes and what not just hasn't yet proven to be persuasive enough.


2:30 and 7 PM today....still planning to go, but today is the annual Bay To Breakers craziness, so I may decide to pass, and like you, wait for September, but we shall see.
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#6 Duke Togo

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 10:40 PM

The clowns and mimes here are quite breathtaking, and I love the way they portray a headlining mime as a sex symbol. This is going to be a stunning HD release, and hopefully a single disc for the full running-time.

#7 cfkane

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 08:50 AM

I did pass. Yesterday was my birthday and family took me out to Chinatown, a great day, but was too tired to sit through 3 hours worth of film, any film. I'll see it in the fall on BD.
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#8 Saito

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 02:09 PM

Dvdbeaver has just reviewed the blu-ray:

http://www.dvdbeaver...of paradise.htm

So does anyone else think that Criterion really dropped the ball on this one? They used Pathe's restored transfer, and as the review points out, it just looks completely waxy and soft. Maybe it'll look better in motion, but as of now it appears that this is Criterion's most disappointing blu-ray so far.

#9 CSM126

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 06:43 PM

One has to consider that Fench films of that era were made under paltry circumstances and old lenses, frequently resulting in soft focus. This movie would never be sharp. Pathè may have employed some DNR to smooth the grain but it's not fatal to the image, such as it is. I saw this restoration projected in 4k on an IMAX-size screen and it looked gorgeous, and the BR appears to represent it faithfully. It's certainly better than what the older discs offered.

#10 Saito

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 04:56 PM

Not really convinced that all the fault lies in the cinematography. Here's another review that illustrates some transfer issues:

http://www.blu-ray.c...-Blu-ray/48077/

It just looks like the image was filtered to oblivion; smeared, lacking in contrast and detail, very little grain, etc. I don't doubt that it looked nice on the big screen, but it doesn't seem like the transition to blu-ray was successful.

#11 Duke Togo

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 05:28 PM

Do we know if the Second Sight BD releasing on the 17th will be using the Pathe restoration?

#12 mikesncc1701

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 07:17 PM

Man that's disappointing as hell. I was really looking forward to this and may still buy it during a sale, but I can't believe Criterion put a half ass transfer onto a disc. We know if they had done it themselves it wouldn't be near as bad.

#13 Saito

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 08:49 PM

Let's just hope that this is the last time Criterion uses a Pathe transfer. Just look what they did to Le Samourai:

http://www.ecranlarg...221&postcount=2

Jaw-droppingly bad.

#14 Duke Togo

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 09:12 PM

Let's just hope that this is the last time Criterion uses a Pathe transfer. Just look what they did to Le Samourai:

http://www.ecranlarg...221&postcount=2

Jaw-droppingly bad.


What the shit?!?

#15 mikesncc1701

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Posted 11 September 2012 - 11:28 PM

Man, that's even worse. Looks like a damn painting. Looks like Pathe needs to step away from the plate.

#16 Izo

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Posted 21 July 2014 - 05:03 PM

I finally got around to Children of Paradise on Saturday evening, and I guess I just left feeling a tad disappointed.  It's certainly a gorgeous film in every respect (more impressive when you consider the circumstances of its filming), but I guess the film's magic didn't quite work on me.  I loved the character of Baptiste, and I was riveted every second he was on screen, and the extended theatrical performances in the film were absolutely delightful - including the mimery, Clyde - but the fact that I found the film's heroince Garance (or rather the actress Arletty) to be completely uncharismatic and frankly far too old for the role.  It was just impossible for me to accept that these four wildly successful (in various fields) men would be falling over themselves for this detached, cold, ultimately talentless woman.  I just don't get it.  The film's scope was impressive in a sort of Sam Bronston sort of way, and the comparisons to Gone With the Wind are apt.  I don't like that movie either. 



#17 Duke Togo

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Posted 23 July 2014 - 11:28 PM

I finally got around to Children of Paradise on Saturday evening, and I guess I just left feeling a tad disappointed.  It's certainly a gorgeous film in every respect (more impressive when you consider the circumstances of its filming), but I guess the film's magic didn't quite work on me.  I loved the character of Baptiste, and I was riveted every second he was on screen, and the extended theatrical performances in the film were absolutely delightful - including the mimery, Clyde - but the fact that I found the film's heroince Garance (or rather the actress Arletty) to be completely uncharismatic and frankly far too old for the role.  It was just impossible for me to accept that these four wildly successful (in various fields) men would be falling over themselves for this detached, cold, ultimately talentless woman.  I just don't get it.  The film's scope was impressive in a sort of Sam Bronston sort of way, and the comparisons to Gone With the Wind are apt.  I don't like that movie either. 

 

I see Garance as a blank slate. She is much like the Venus statue that appears several times throughout the film, a depiction of womanhood fulfilling a slightly different purpose for each of the men in the story. Her performance outside that context was admittedly quite unremarkable, and that is all I got from her after my first viewing of the film, which I still loved regardless.



#18 Izo

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 12:08 AM

The Venus statue comparison is pretty explicit as well, especially with Garance playing the statue on stage in one of the best scenes in the film.




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