Agatha Christie-Marple-The Sittaford Mystery (2006)
|Year Of Production||2006|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Paul Unwin|
Roadshow Home Entertainment
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (256Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.78:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||English for the Hearing Impaired||Smoking||Yes|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Agatha Christie created two of the most enduring characters in crime fiction, Hercule Poirot and Miss Jane Marple. Both of these characters have recently been brought to life again in a series of Granada Television telemovies over the last few years. Both series were shown on ABC television here in Australia and both have been released as a series of DVDs by Roadshow.
As you would expect from Agatha Christie, all of these new Miss Marple (played here by the wonderful Geraldine McEwan) stories are full of murder, twists, lies, red herrings and deceptions. It is impossible to describe the plots in detail without giving away the story and spoiling the twists.
This last one of 2007's set of four movies, The Sittaford Mystery, involves the story of Captain Clive Trevelyan (Timothy Dalton), a well known politician earmarked to succeed Winston Churchill as Prime Minister. When away from London he lives in his country home, Sittaford House. Whilst considering his political future he heads home to Sittaford as a snowstorm sweeps in. Miss Marple is also going to the same area and she ends up staying at Sittaford at the request of her absent nephew. Instead of actually staying at his house Trevelyan decides to spend the night in a local hotel where a strange collection of guests have taken up residence. During a ouija board session it is predicted that Trevelyan will be murdered that night and subsequently a box of Turkish Delight sent to him at Sittaford is discovered to be poisoned. Before entering politics Trevelyan was an adventurer/grave robber in Egypt which may or may not be related. Other ingredients in the story include a ruthless journalist, Trevelyan's adopted and constantly sozzled son, an escaped prisoner and a ghost.
Stylistically, this telemovie includes some nice touches, somewhat reminiscent of a 1950s melodrama. Another quality English murder mystery from the Agatha Christie collection.
The video quality is very good but not spectacular.
The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio 16x9 enhanced which is most likely the original aspect ratio.
The picture was quite clear and sharp throughout without being overly crisp. The sharpness was also affected by some light grain. There was no evidence of low level noise. The shadow detail was good.
The colour was very good with no issues to report.
The only noticeable artefact was a little mild aliasing.
There are subtitles in English for the hearing impaired which are clear and easy to read.
The audio quality is very good.
This DVD contains an English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo soundtrack encoded at 256 Kb/s.
Dialogue was clear and easy to understand and there was no problem with audio sync.
The score of this film by Dominik Scherrer is very good indeed, surprisingly so for a television production. It adds significantly to the mood of the show. The music sounds very warm and full.
The surround speakers were used quite extensively for music when played using Dolby ProLogic II.
The subwoofer was used to add bass to the music but this was more a function of my amplifiers bass management than anything else.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu was very simple only allowing for scene selection and turning on and off of subtitles. Music plays over a still from the show.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
This series of four movies is available as a box set in Region 1 which includes the following special features:
As the local releases include no extras, this is obviously a better solution.
The video quality is very good.
The audio quality is very good.
The disc has no extras.
|DVD||Pioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, using Component output|
|Display||Sony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Monitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer|