Agatha Christie: Poirot-Cat Among the Pigeons (2005)

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Released 2-Apr-2009

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Mystery Main Menu Audio
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2005
Running Time 93:04
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Peter Barber-Fleming
Edward Bennett
John Bruce
Ross Devenish
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring David Suchet
Hugh Fraser
Philip Jackson
Pauline Moran
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $19.95 Music Christopher Gunning
Christopher Gunning
Christopher Gunning


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (256Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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Plot Synopsis

    David Suchet is, in my opinion, the quintessential Hercule Poirot, Agatha Christie's most famous sleuth. He has now played the role since 1989 (in an on again, off again manner) racking up over 50 episodes with more on the way. This is the first of the most recent crop of four new stories which have been shown recently on the ABC here in Australia. Suchet's grasp on the intricacies of the character was obviously strong from the very beginning of this series. His performance here as the fastidious, intelligent and politely sarcastic Poirot is wonderful. The production quality is high as is the quality of most of the large ensemble cast. As usual with Poirot stories (and Agatha Christie generally) there are many suspects and a convoluted plot involving red herrings, half-truths and small hints.

    This episode, Cat Among the Pigeons is based around two seemingly unrelated settings, a revolution in a small middle-eastern country and a small exclusive girl's boarding school in England. Poirot is an old friend of the school's headmistress and of course is visiting just at the right time as the bodies start to fall along with the disappearance of one of the school's pupils. He is there to help the headmistress decide who should succeed her as she had decided to move on to something new. Of course, everyone is a suspect and the story involves many of the usual twists and turns. I believe that unlike some other episodes this is one is quite a close adaptation of the original novel. This is one of the few episodes in this series to be rated M by the OFLC for violence.

    Recommended for Poirot fans and fans of English mystery generally.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality is 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 not overly clear and sharp with some scenes being quite decent in this regard and others looking like we are watching through vaseline smeared on the lens. There was some mild macro-blocking in backgrounds. There was no evidence of low level noise.The shadow detail was good.

    The colour was very good with no major issues to report.There was some light colour bleeding.

    There was some edge enhancement here and there along with some occasional light grain.

    There are subtitles in English for the hearing impaired which are clear and easy to read.

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Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

     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 surround speakers were used quite extensively for music and atmosphere such as storm effects when played using Dolby ProLogic II.

    The subwoofer was used to add bass to the music but this was more a function of my amp's bass management than anything else.

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Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

    No extras.

Menu

    The menu design is simple, featuring a still.

 

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    This does not currently seem to be available in Region 1.

Summary

    A high quality entry into the long running series of mysteries starring David Suchet as the Belgian sleuth, Hercule Poirot.

    The video quality is good.

    The audio quality is very good.

    No Extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Review Equipment
DVDSony DVP-NS708H upscaling to 1080p, using HDMI output
DisplayLG Scarlet 42LG61YD 106cm Full HD LCD. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer

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