Reviewer's Rating 2 out of 5  
Kind Hearts and Coronets DVD (1949)

The wonderful film legacy left by the Ealing Studios is ripe for re-release onto DVD. That one of the jewels in the Ealing crown, "Kind Hearts and Coronets", should get such a flimsy release doesn't bode well for future discs.

The first surprise that will hit you about the picture is not the quality, but rather the French credits. Studio Canal are the French company who own the rights to this print, but it's safe to say that most people would prefer to see the correct titles of the film's country of origin used.

Otherwise the picture is fair. The print can at times be a little scratchy, but it doesn't suffer from too much damage and the contrast levels are reasonable. Despite this, restoration work would do this film a lot of good.

The need for some tender loving care is definitely evident on the soundtrack. Any rousing crescendos in the music score distort horribly. Additionally, the dialogue is rather faint although it is a lot more natural than the French and Spanish dubs, which sound like they were recorded in a cardboard box.

Extra features include cast filmographies, a trailer, and a good photo gallery with over 60 stills and posters. Unfortunately, this is not enough to compensate for a rather sorry release for such a wonderful moment in cinema history.

Chapters: 16
Region: 2
Ratio:1.33:1 (Fullscreen)
Sound: Dolby Digital 2.0
Extra Features: Scene selection, photo gallery, filmographies, trailer, animated main menu, multiple languages, French subtitles only.

End Credits

Director: Robert Hamer

Writer: Robert Hamer, John Dighton

Stars: Alec Guinness, Dennis Price, Joan Greenwood, Valerie Hobson

Genre: Comedy

Length: 105 minutes

Cinema: 1949

DVD: 5 March 2001

Country: UK