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Quartet
     

Quartet

Director: James Ivory, Alan Bates, Maggie Smith, Isabelle Adjani

Cast: James Ivory, Alan Bates, Maggie Smith, Isabelle Adjani

 

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Based on the novel by Jean Rhys, Quartet is a romantic drama from the filmmaking team of James Ivory and Ismail Merchant set in 1920s Paris. The film, which stars Maggie Smith and Isabelle Adjani, has been given an anamorphic transfer on this DVD and is presented in the widescreen format. The English soundtrack has been rendered in Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono and

Overview

Based on the novel by Jean Rhys, Quartet is a romantic drama from the filmmaking team of James Ivory and Ismail Merchant set in 1920s Paris. The film, which stars Maggie Smith and Isabelle Adjani, has been given an anamorphic transfer on this DVD and is presented in the widescreen format. The English soundtrack has been rendered in Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono and English subtitles are also available. In addition to the film itself, the disc offers viewers insight into the creation of the film with a series of interviews with director Ivory, producer Merchant, screenwriter Ruth Prawer, and composer Richard Robbins. Last, but not least, the theatrical trailer has been included.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Many find the films of James Ivory and Ismail Merchant to be a little too reserved and placid, a charge that can quite easily be leveled at Quartet. Dry to the point of being parched, Quartet clearly intends to point up the deeper emotions that lie buried beneath the surface; yet director Ivory seems somewhat confused about what those emotions are and about what relation they have to the story. Motivations are murky; in an effectively subtle film, this can work to create a discomforting atmosphere, but in Quartet they seem murky to those behind the camera as well. This is especially true of Isabelle Adjani, a fine actress who seems left at sea here. Alan Bates turns in a much better performance, but one feels that the actor is imposing meaning into his scenes that isn't really there. Only Maggie Smith truly seems to have a clear handle on what her character is really feeling and why. Despite these flaws, the film does manage to create a palpable sense of vague melancholy that is impressive, and it is visually quite striking, from the gorgeously detailed sets and costumes to the lovely, gently evocative photography. If Quartet fails to always strike the chords it wants to, it is still haunting.

Product Details

Release Date:
02/24/2004
UPC:
0037429179321
Original Release:
1981
Rating:
R
Source:
Merchant Ivory
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital Mono]
Time:
1:41:00

Special Features

Closed Caption; New digital transfer, enhanced for widescreen televisions; Conversation with the Filmmakers. part of a new series of interviews with Ismail Merchant, James Ivory, Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, and Richard Robbins; Original theatrical trailer; English subtitles for the deaf and hearing impaired

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Alan Bates H.J. Heidler
Maggie Smith Lois
Isabelle Adjani Marya Zelli
Anthony Higgins Stephan
Daniel Chatto Guy
Pierre Clementi Theo, the pornographer
Suzanne Flon Concierge
Sheila Gish Anna
Daniel Mesguich Schlamovitz
Humbert Balsan Impresario's Friend
Romain Bremond Youth
Josine Comellas Cafe Patronne
Sebastien Floche Hatuchamp
Jeffrey Kime James
Caroline Loeb Nun
Serge Marquand Night Club Owner
Armelia McQueen Nell, Singer
Annie Noel Maid
Paulita Sedgwick Esther
Bernice Stegers Miss Nicholson
Michel Such Guard
Virginie Thevenet Mlle. Chardin
Francois Viaur Lefranc

Technical Credits
James Ivory Director,Screenwriter
Jean-Jacques Caziot Art Director
Jean Pierre Maho de la Querantonnais Producer
Humphrey Dixon Editor
Ruth Prawer Jhabvala Screenwriter
Alex Leyton Cinematographer
Pierre Lhomme Cinematographer
Jean-Pierre Mahot Producer
Ismail Merchant Producer
Judy Moorcraft Costumes/Costume Designer
W. Somerset Maugham Source Author
Richard Robbins Score Composer

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Opening Credits [2:08]
2. Paris, 1927 [3:45]
3. "You Want to Avoid English People in Paris" [3:56]
4. Stephan Arrested [6:47]
5. Prison Visit [3:54]
6. Marya Stays with the Heidlers [10:32]
7. A Night on the Town [12:14]
8. "Do You Think I'm Mad?" [6:23]
9. "She Ought to Sing for Her Supper" [5:12]
10. A Weekend in the Country [8:35]
11. "Such a Funny, Pretty Little Thing" [2:08]
12. "Married People Often Have Strange Relationships" [5:42]
13. Stephan Makes Plans to Leave Paris [7:41]
14. Dinner with the Heidlers [6:33]
15. "You've Got to Take Me with You" [5:37]
16. End Credits [7:18]

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