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34 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars About the Blu Ray
MOVIE 4.5 / 5
PICTURE 3.5 / 5
AUDIO 3.5 / 5
EXTRAS 3

The disc is REGION B "LOCKED", so tested on a Momitsu Blu Ray player. Audio: English (DTS Master Audio Mono), German and Spanish Castillian. Subtitles: German, Spanish (Castillian), Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish. NO ENGLISH SUBTITLES though.

For those not familiar with...
Published on 6 Mar 2010 by Cesar

versus
74 of 82 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 5 star film, 1 star DVD
This is a superb film, unfolding at a moodily languid pace and portraying the injustice of the class system in British society with far more subtlety than most period films. It is a film for intelligent viewers who can appreciate the accumulation of hints and nuances that support this through line. Alan Bates is superb, and Julie Christie is also very well cast. Though he...
Published on 2 Feb 2007 by Simon Kroussier


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34 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars About the Blu Ray, 6 Mar 2010
By 
MOVIE 4.5 / 5
PICTURE 3.5 / 5
AUDIO 3.5 / 5
EXTRAS 3

The disc is REGION B "LOCKED", so tested on a Momitsu Blu Ray player. Audio: English (DTS Master Audio Mono), German and Spanish Castillian. Subtitles: German, Spanish (Castillian), Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish. NO ENGLISH SUBTITLES though.

For those not familiar with the movie, the story takes place in early 1900s England. A young boy -a child- almost 13 years old lends himself as a messenger between two lovers, an experience that will mark him for the rest of his life.

This is a very good movie, that recreates a old world with so many details, that it makes one really feel in another time and place.

It's not a movie for everyone though. It's slow, deliberate. To enjoy it, you have to able to put yourself in the young messenger's place, innocently trapped in a world that he has to discover and undesrtand as it unfolds before him, and it depends also in undertanding the the class-ridden and prohibitive world in which the love he came to witness (and serve) takes place.

Although the casting was made so two stars can take first bill (Julie Christie and Alan Bates, whom do a very good job), it's Dominic Guard's subdued and tender performance the one that carries the film, an outstanding acting debut (winner of a Bafta Film award, "Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles"). It's worth mentioning too that Margareth Leighton was nominated for an Oscar, and won a Bafta too.

Now, about the Blu Ray.

Picture quality is hard to judge. Is it better than the DVD? I must say YES (my reference for comparison is the copy of the collection "Screen Icons" that the UK's Sunday Telgraph included as a giveaway some 4 years ago). Colors are truer, images clearer. The copy is in pristine condition, without stains or scratches or any other sign of deterioration. Grain is slightly present, and there's no evident manipulation like noise reduction or things like that. In general, details are more enhanced.

So then, what's the problem?. I must quote INFREG, who, in this site, writes as follows (regarding an old dvd edition):
"Yes, it is a pity that the movie is not presented in its intended theatrical aspect ratio 1.85... The movie is presented in its original open matte format, which means it was shot in conventional 1.33 to fit TV screens. For theatrical release the picture was then cropped at the top and the bottom, a common practice since the Fifties. So the picture is nothing missing here as the other reviewers suggest. Instead, it shows more information at the top and the bottom than the theatrical release. Just for the record".

That's the DVD. The Blu Ray DOES present an 1:85:1 aspect ratio, meaning that it fills completely the 16 x 9 screen. Meaning that it discards the original film format and presents the movie the way INFREG says it was intended to be exhibited in theaters. Is INFREG right? I guess he is. Nothing in the movie, as included in the Blu Ray, appears as if out of frame or focus. All the contrary.

There's a similar case with the Blu Ray release of "Herostratus" by the BFI. It presents the movie as it was supposed to be shown (16 x 9). But unlike The Go-Between, Herostratus BD includes the original film version (4 x 3) as an extra.

The problem is that if you work with the original 4 x 3 version, but you have to "zoom it in" to fill the 16 x 9 screen, then inevitably you will lose detail. In other words, The Go-Between BD show better detail compared to the standard DVD, but it could have been better. That's the only explanation (not, let's say, some other defect in the transfer) that I find to explain the picture quality that I saw. I think Studio-Canal should have included the original format AS AN EXTRA, as BFI did with Herostratus.

Another problem is that in some scenes the frame shakes slightly and repeatedly from side to side. As far as I could compare, this is a problem shared by the very same scenes on the dvd (so they seem to be inherent to the original film). At first, the issue is annoying, but afterwards they feel few and far between, not enough to ruin the experience.

The original english audio track, decoded as DTS- Master Audio Stereo, but actually monophonic, is generally plain, as you would expect from a 1971 movie. Since it is expected, is not a flaw really. Being a movie dependent on dialogues, the most important thing is clarity, and you have it. And the music is pretty clear too. I must add that in comparison, german audio is not as good, and spanish audio is very poor. Those are also decoded as DTS Master Audio stereo (mono), but of lesser quality, evidently recorded when the movie was first released.

Extras consist mainly on individual interviews, in some cases with people linked only indirectly with the director or the production. There are two important ones: with Gerry Fisher, cinematographer, and John Heyman, producer. There's also a short audio interview with director Joseph Losey, but from some 3 years after the movie and not specifically refered to the movie.

FINAL WORDS. This BD is a must have for fans of the movie, and for those who have afinity with (and patience for) period dramas. Generally speaking, is not a reference Blu Ray, but I was satisfied with the presentation and I doubt that it can look better (except if they include the film in its original format, something that I don't think will happen).

My greatest regret though is that this release is REGION B "locked", and so they have limited the possiblities for Blu Ray users (outside Europe) to get to know or collect this classic.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite English entertainment, 14 Feb 2009
By 
William Cohen (London) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Go-Between [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
I watched this film a year ago, and it's taken me that long to find the strength to write a review of it. It really hit me between the temples. Mostly because I found the themes of arrested adolescence, an idyllic English setting, thwarted love, childhood fantasy and loneliness as well as mystical intrigue, very familiar. Cyril Connolly writes how English men find the experiences at their boarding schools so overwhelming they never really come to terms with adulthood, and he has a strong case.

This film has all the ingredients of a troubled life - a beautiful but insensitive woman, who inspires rapturous fantasy - a bunch of emotional cardboard cutouts and the class system, mix that up with cricket, summer heat and a stately home and you can see that its about what the rest of the world find so puzzling about us.
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76 of 84 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The aspect ratio, 13 Aug 2007
This review is from: The Go-Between [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
Yes, it is a pity that the movie is not presented in its intended theatrical aspect ratio 1.85. But to make it clear it is not presented in "butchered 1.33 to fit conventional TV screens" or a "TV-friendly crop of the original wide-screen movie" either. The movie is presented in its original open matte format, which means it was shot in conventional 1.33 to fit TV screens. For theatrical release the picture was then cropped at the top and the bottom, a common practice since the Fifties. So the picture is nothing missing here as the other reviewers suggest. Instead, it shows more information at the top and the bottom than the theatrical release. Just for the record.
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74 of 82 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 5 star film, 1 star DVD, 2 Feb 2007
This review is from: The Go-Between [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
This is a superb film, unfolding at a moodily languid pace and portraying the injustice of the class system in British society with far more subtlety than most period films. It is a film for intelligent viewers who can appreciate the accumulation of hints and nuances that support this through line. Alan Bates is superb, and Julie Christie is also very well cast. Though he only appears at the end, Michael Redgrave is mesmeric as the haunted bachelor asked to once more walk into the trauma of his youth. This youth involved carrying illicit notes between a young aristocratic single woman (Christie) and a tenant farmer on her family's land (Bates). The interplay of these characters is fascinating, owing much to Joseph Losey's restrained elegant direction and Harold Pinter's taut screenplay. Though I have not read the L.P. Hartley novel on which this is based, I am now very much encouraged to do so.

Unfortunately, though the back of the DVD case claims that the aspect ratio is 1.85, the film is presented in a butchered 1.33 to fit conventional TV screens. Hopefully a more meticulous release will come out at some stage, as the film really is a masterpiece that deserves to be seen as originally intended and shot.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary film & music, 23 Feb 2011
By 
Peter Thomsen (Denmark) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Go-Between [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
This Julie Christie-film is extraordinary (as usual when it's JC). It hits exactly the mood and shows how some of the golden films where made at that time, aprx. 1967-74. The music by Michel Legrand is very fantastic and dramatic too.
The only thing about this DVD which is a shame, is that it has no (danish) subtitles. I already knew it, when I bought it. So I had to download a random english subtitle-file from google. Which meant I had to point forward with the right hand (on my laptop), while making the speed of the movie with the left hand. Sentence to sentence. So it would syncronice, which is rather ridiculous. But that's how I did it.
Not even the new Blue-Ray version has no (danish) subtitles, which I think is wrong.
Anyway this movie is so outstanding, that if it would be released with Danish subtitles, I maybe would buy it one more time.
So I will give it 5 stars.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Eloquent, literary and nostalgic...", 17 Jan 2013
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This review is from: The Go-Between [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
American screenwriter and director Joseph Losey`s twenty-third feature film which was written by English playwright, screenwriter, actor and director Harold Pinter (1930-2008), is an adaptation of a novel from 1953 by British author Leslie Poles Hartley (1895-1972). It was screened In competition at the 24th Cannes International Film Festival in 1971, was shot on location in the county of Norfolk in England and is a UK production which was produced by German-born British producer John Heyman and British producer Norman Priggen. It tells the story about Leo Colston, a 12-year-old student and a kind of magician who in a hot summer of 1900 is invited as a guest to a countryside mansion called the Brandham Hall in Norfolk by an aristocratic family named Maudsley. Leo has come there mainly due to his schoolmate Marcus who is the son of Mr and Mrs Maudsley, but his initial reasons for being there changes when he notices Marcus` elder sister Marian.

Distinctly and precisely directed by American filmmaker Joseph Losey (1909-1984), this quietly paced fictional tale which is narrated by the protagonist and from multiple viewpoints, draws a gripping portrayal of the moral and emotional dilemma an adolescent boy is faced with after becoming a secret messenger and the forbidden relationship between an aristocratic an affianced young woman and a tenant farmer who has to hide their romance. While notable for its naturalistic and atmospheric milieu depictions, sterling production design by English production designer Carmen Dillon, cinematography by English cinematographer Gerry Fisher, costume design by costume designer John Furniss and the fine editing by English film editor Reginald Black (1902-1992), this character-driven and narrative-driven period drama where an aging man reminiscence a pivotal year in his life when his young heart was struck by a magnificent woman, depicts an empathic and incisive study of character and contains an efficient and prominent score by French composer Michel Legrand.

This romantic, suspenseful, reflective and stringently structured story which is set against the backdrop of a rural county near the city of Norwich in East England in the late 19th century, examines themes like friendship, class distinctions, loss of innocence and is impelled and reinforced by its fragmented narrative structure, substantial character development, subtle continuity, foreboding and harmonic atmosphere, graceful aura, exceptionally moving flash forward scenes and the memorable acting performances by former English actor Dominic Guard in his debut feature film role, English actress Julie Christie, English actor Sir Alan Bates (1934-2003), English actress Margaret Leighton (1922-1976) and English actor Edward Fox. An eloquent, literary and nostalgic coming-of-age tale from the early 1970s which brilliantly combines various genres and which gained, among numerous other awards, the Palme d`Or at the 24th Cannes Film Festival in 1971.

As their two previous cooperation`s, Joseph Losey and author Harold Pinter`s third and final collaboration is a film adaptation of a novel by a 20th century British writer and an artistic character piece that examines and emphasizes the internal struggles of characters from upper and lower social classes who are either by themselves or others led into predicaments that unravels their frailty. This mysterious and dense triangle drama which follows the memories of a main character who looks back at a faraway past that has left him scarred for life, is a timeless and masterful cinematic accomplishment.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Great film, poor DVD quality, 28 Dec 2011
By 
This review is from: The Go-Between [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
The Go-Between from Joseph Losey is a masterpiece:
Great screenplay, fantastic actors, the cinematography is amazing.

This edition in 1.33:1 doesn't seem to be better than a good VHS-version.
But as there is no alternative, I wanted to have this version, at least.

I ordered the DVD twice, because there was something wrong with the first copy.
Today I received my second one, but this DVD doesn't run correctly either.
The pictures are full of visual and digital artifacts, too.
I talked to a person, that bought an older copy. His DVD doesn't have these faults.
So I wrote a message to studiocanal, some weeks ago. Unfortunately I didn't get an answer until now.
It seems to me, that there might be new dvds on the market, but that the master wasn't checked before.
Is this correct?
What happened during the technical processes in the laboratories?
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31 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A timeless classic, 19 Sep 2001
Harold Pinter wasn't know for his screenplays, but with this script, he brought forward all of his legendary expertise to give us one of cinema's most stunning costume dramas in british film history. This is a film you will want to see again and again, and if you do, you'll see something fresh each time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Forward flashes in time spoil and excellent film, 22 Feb 2014
By 
Cat (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Go-Between [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
An interesting film, reflecting an earlier age. The well-known quotation that the past is a foreign country comes from the book on which this is based. Until you realise that the film is set in the past with short flashes forward in time it is a little confusing as it makes it appear that there are continuity errors and chronological anachronisms. The forward flashes are very short and sometimes muddy the story, and I feel the film would be better without them. The core of the story is that a couple from different social classes are having an affair, and use a young boy who is staying with the family to act as a postman, carrying their messages. He, when he realises what is happening seems to be psychologically damaged by the experience. Apart from the confusing forward flashes the film is well made and well acted, I found it well worth watching. Overall I can recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect past, 17 Dec 2013
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This review is from: The Go-Between [DVD] [1970] (DVD)
I watched this film immediately after reading the book. This was natural enough, but one does tend to compare the two.
I enjoyed the film very much. The period detail was perfect. The scenery,the house, the furniture, the good manners,the cricket-all were just perfect.
As for comparison with the book,the film is more faithful than most films from books. In the book Marian and her mother are warmer people. I always find Margaret Leighton chilling, and Julie Christie is a bit hard. Everyone else was perfect, and Christie and Leighton were very credible. Alan Bates plays a nature boy very well, reminiscent of other parts. This is a remarkable story and excellent film.
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The Go-Between [DVD] [1970]
The Go-Between [DVD] [1970] by Joseph Losey (DVD - 2007)
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