Customer Review

40 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Probably, the finest Rosenkavalier anywhere on video or audio, 4 Dec 2010
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This review is from: Der Rosenkavalier [Restored Edition] [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
I own 2 other performances of Der Rosenkavalier on Blu-ray (Anne Schwanewilms and Renée Fleming). Although technically superior to this filmed production they both failed to satisfy on most levels.

The Park Circus Studio Blu-ray release has been beautifully restored and I felt as if I was watching the film as I remember it from more than 40 years ago.

Video codec - MPEG-4 AVC, 1080i / 25fps
Aspect ratio - 1.66:1 (black bars on both sides on a 16:9 monitor).
Audio - DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 / 48kHz / 24-bit
Sub-titles - English only

A truly Historical Performance of the 20th century; Paul Zinner's 1961 film was taken from an actual live performance at the Salzburg Festival.
It has been described as "Probably, the finest Rosenkavalier anywhere on video or audio" and I agree.

Elizabeth Schwarzkopf performs her signature role as the Princess von Werdenberg and is truly astounding in her singing and phrasing. Sena Jurinac is superb as the young Count Octavian Rofrano, she looks and has the mannerisms of a young man (with the Schwanewilms and Fleming versions I felt I was watching a couple of lesbians, not a mature woman and her young male lover). Otto Edelmann is Baron Ochs auf Lerchenau, the Marshallin's distant Cousin is perfect as the boisterous and oafish country gentleman. Anneliese Rothenberger is Sophie Faninal, the daughter of the newly-rich and recently knighted businessman, Herr Faninal (Erich Kunz).

All 5 principals are outstanding. Having the added advantage of being native German speakers, their pronunciation is flawless and easy to follow. For the benefit if non German speakers there are excellent English sub-titles. Herbert von Karajan and the Vienna Philharmonic need no praise, their collaborations of the years have been exemplary.

The costumes and sets are quite lavish and the Blu-ray reveals a whole new level of detail that simply wasn't visible on previous formats. I truly love this restoration and can easily overlookthe occaisional mismatch of the lips and audio (after all, the audio was added later in the recording studio and it was 50 years ago).

It is interesting to note that according to Blu-ray.com the U.S. Blu-ray release from Kultur is supposed to have:
Video codec: VC-1; Video resolution: 1080p; Aspect ratio: 1.66:1; Audio: LPCM 2.0; Subtitles: English only.

Also, Amazon's Product Description was taken from the back cover of the Blu-Ray and anyone who is familiar with this opera knows that Octavian is the Princess' lover not her wooer and Sophie Faninal is not the Princess' sister.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 4 Dec 2010 22:40:20 GMT
I forgot to add, the Blu-ray is locked to Region B.

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Jan 2011 22:48:55 GMT
SonoPicto says:
Thank you Harry I loved your review but there is no region B it's numbers and not letters. So if this bluray is viewable only in Europe it will be Region 2.

In reply to an earlier post on 22 Jan 2011 02:55:38 GMT
Dear SonoPicto,

Not wishing to confuse any newcomers to the Blu-ray format, but numeric Region Codes; 1,2,3,4,5,6 and (0 for All Regions) are for DVDs. Blu-ray Region Codes are alphabetic; A, B and C.

It's a pity Amazon do not have a screen shot of the back of the Blu-ray Cover, as it would clearly show the Region Code as "B".

Region "B" is for the following geographical locations; Africa, Middle East, Southwest Asia, Europe (except Belarus, Russia and Ukraine), Australia, New Zealand, and their dependencies.
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