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Category:    Home > Reviews > Telefilm > Biography > Classical Music > Briitsh TV > Elgar’s Tenth Muse (1996) + The Double Life Of Franz Schubert (1997/Kultur)

Elgar’s Tenth Muse (1996) + The Double Life Of Franz Schubert (1997/Kultur)


Picture: C     Sound: B-     Extras: D     Telefilms: B-



Continuing the Kultur/Warner Music rollout of TV titles on classical music figures, Elgar’s Tenth Muse and The Double Life Of Franz Schubert arrive on DVD at about the same time, offering solid, short, good telefilms on composer Sir Edward Elgar (James Fox) and Franz Schubert (Simon Russell Beale) made with Classical Music lovers in mind.


Muse deals with Elgar peaking when he meets Jelly d’Aranyi (Selma Alispahic) with her own aspiration to be a violinist being held back by sexism and other factors.  They meet in 1919, changing each others lives forever.  Double Life offers crosses back and fourth between dying of syphilis after being betrayed by his friend Schober (Jason Flemyng) and bashed all around.  It is a sad, painful tale, made more so by the flashbacks to his creative and glory days.  Both are worth a look and are more impressive than you might think.


Both are letterboxed, but at different aspect ratios.  Muse is 1.78 X 1, while Schubert is 1.66 X 1 from the time when British TV production was hedging its bets on final HDTV specs.  The PCM 2.0 16/48 Stereo sound is nice, clear and richer than the usual, tired 2.0 Dolby would be in the same case, with fidelity only showing its age somewhat, making the image trouble more tolerable.  There are no extras.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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