Seen that!

A film and DVD blog

Don Giovanni – Furtwangler (1955)

without comments

Concept: Recording a classic production

Don Giovanni is my favourite opera and this is a recording of a famous production, done for the Salzburg Festival in the 50s.

What’s good: This is a very strong cast, with a very good orchestra, conducted by one of the greats.

What’s not so good: The sound is poor. Mono is ok and PCM should be as perfect as you can get (no compression) but the balance between the orchestra and singers is poor (the former is too quiet to my ears) and something in the process of recording couldn't cope with the full range of the singers. The result is some very audible and distracting distortion, especially when they're singing loudly.

The picture is desaturated (turn the colour up!) and some of the camera work is a bit juddery (see some of the pans).

Elements of the production have also dated horribly. See the tights the poor Don has to wear in contrast to everyone else's costume. Was he on the way to a fancy dress party?

Music: Don Giovanni is the greatest opera ever written, but the problems with the recording mean you can't hear it properly.


Overall: I'm sure it was wonderful live (you could close your eyes to avoid the tights!) and, compared to some other DVDs of Don Giovanni, it's cheap. But the problems mean that you're better off buying a CD.

TL;DR Not good enough to listen to or watch

Film: 1.5/5
DVD: 1/5

Subtitles, but nothing else.

Written by Ian

March 9th, 2012 at 11:49 am

Posted in Cinema,DVDs

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