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With this sublimely bittersweet tale of romantic longing, director David Lean left behind the British soundstage to capture in radiant Technicolor the sun-splashed glory of Venice at the height of summer. In a tour de force of fearless vulnerability, Katharine Hepburn embodies the conflicting emotions that stir the heart of a lonely, middle-aged American tourist who is forced to confront her deep-seated insecurities when she is drawn into a seemingly impossible affair with a charming Italian shopkeeper (Rossano Brazzi) amid the ancient city’s canals and piazzas. Lean’s personal favorite among his own films, Summertime is an exquisitely tender evocation of the magic and melancholy of a fleeting, not-quite-fairy-tale romance.

FILM INFO​




  • United States
  • 1955
  • 100 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.37:1
  • English
  • Spine #22

    SPECIAL FEATURES​



    • New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
    • New interview with film historian Melanie Williams
    • Interview with director David Lean from 1963
    • Audio excerpts of a 1988 interview with cinematographer Jack Hildyard
    • Trailer
    • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
    • PLUS: An essay by film critic Stephanie Zacharek


    New cover by Lauren Tamaki

    July 12, 2022
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Ronald Epstein

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Thomas T

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With this sublimely bittersweet tale of romantic longing, director David Lean left behind the British soundstage to capture in radiant Technicolor the sun-splashed glory of Venice at the height of summer. In a tour de force of fearless vulnerability, Katharine Hepburn embodies the conflicting emotions that stir the heart of a lonely, middle-aged American tourist who is forced to confront her deep-seated insecurities when she is drawn into a seemingly impossible affair with a charming Italian shopkeeper (Rossano Brazzi) amid the ancient city’s canals and piazzas. Lean’s personal favorite among his own films, Summertime is an exquisitely tender evocation of the magic and melancholy of a fleeting, not-quite-fairy-tale romance.

FILM INFO​

  • United States
  • 1955
  • 100 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.37:1
  • English
  • Spine #22

    SPECIAL FEATURES​

    • New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
    • New interview with film historian Melanie Williams
    • Interview with director David Lean from 1963
    • Audio excerpts of a 1988 interview with cinematographer Jack Hildyard
    • Trailer
    • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
    • PLUS: An essay by film critic Stephanie Zacharek
    New cover by Lauren Tamaki

    July 12, 2022
And about time! Still, I'm disappointed in the 1.37 aspect ratio. Surely in 1955, it would have been 1.66 at least.
 

Thomas T

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Robert Crawford

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So what could Criterion's justification for the 1.37 be? They were the pioneers of assuring films were shown in their correct aspect ratio during the laser disc era. I suppose the discs are already authored and it's too late to correct this but who knows .....
I don’t get it as the DVD was criticized for the same thing.
 

Josh Steinberg

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They have a few other films they’ve insisted should be 1.37:1 when available evidence suggests otherwise. And like many other distributors of MGM masters, they’ve been perfectly happy to parrot the line that some films were 1.66:1 even when it’s plainly clear that no theaters were showing films in that ratio at the time of their release. With Criterion as well as pretty much everyone else, sometimes you just gotta scratch your head, accept that they will not revise their thinking on the title in question, and set your purchasing decisions and expectations accordingly.

Who owns Summertime? Did Criterion finance this new master or are they merely distributing what was made available to them? The “why” of it all is probably within the answers to those questions.
 

Garysb

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There is also a Japanese blu ray import of the film at Amazon that is listed as 1:33.

The version currently on HBOMAX is likewise 1:33 .

Seems the only way this film has been available for home viewing.
 
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jayembee

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So what could Criterion's justification for the 1.37 be? They were the pioneers of assuring films were shown in their correct aspect ratio during the laser disc era. I suppose the discs are already authored and it's too late to correct this but who knows .....
Well, they did compromise on a few titles back in the LD era. In addition to Summertime, others I can recall were oddly released in 1.33:1 were A Hard Day's Night and Help!, Tunes of Glory and The Horse's Mouth, Vengeance Is Mine, Darling, and Carrie (yes, the DePalma film, not the William Wyler:)).
 
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Robert Crawford

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Well, they did compromise on a few titles back in the LD era. In addition to Summertime, others I can recall were oddly released in 1.33:1 were A Hard Day's Night and Help!, Tunes of Glory and The Horse's Mouth, Vengeance Is Mine, Darling, and Carrie (yes, the DePalma film, not the William Wyler:)).
There shouldn’t be such compromises in 2022!
 

PMF

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So what could Criterion's justification for the 1.37 be? They were the pioneers of assuring films were shown in their correct aspect ratio during the laser disc era. I suppose the discs are already authored and it's too late to correct this but who knows .....
Well, maybe Kino Lorber could fix that later with a 4K/UHD edition.;)
 
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RobertMG

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With this sublimely bittersweet tale of romantic longing, director David Lean left behind the British soundstage to capture in radiant Technicolor the sun-splashed glory of Venice at the height of summer. In a tour de force of fearless vulnerability, Katharine Hepburn embodies the conflicting emotions that stir the heart of a lonely, middle-aged American tourist who is forced to confront her deep-seated insecurities when she is drawn into a seemingly impossible affair with a charming Italian shopkeeper (Rossano Brazzi) amid the ancient city’s canals and piazzas. Lean’s personal favorite among his own films, Summertime is an exquisitely tender evocation of the magic and melancholy of a fleeting, not-quite-fairy-tale romance.

FILM INFO​

  • United States
  • 1955
  • 100 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.37:1
  • English
  • Spine #22

    SPECIAL FEATURES​

    • New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
    • New interview with film historian Melanie Williams
    • Interview with director David Lean from 1963
    • Audio excerpts of a 1988 interview with cinematographer Jack Hildyard
    • Trailer
    • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
    • PLUS: An essay by film critic Stephanie Zacharek
    New cover by Lauren Tamaki

    July 12, 2022
The film that ruined her health, she did not just fall in the Venice canal she went under. Basically falling into a HUGE sewer ---- do not know if it was in the script or an unhappy accident