"The Age Of Innocence" is the adapted work of the Edith Wharton tragic novel set in the cloistered world of Gilded Age Manhattan. The film tells the story of Newland Archer (Day-Lewis), whose engagement to an innocent socialite (Ryder) binds him to the codes and ritual of his upbringing. But when her cousin (Pfeiffer) arrives in town on a wave of scandal, after separating from her husband, she ignites passions in Newland he never knew existed. The film is an alternately heartbreaking and satirical look at the brutality of old-world America. (Gary Reber)
Special features include new interviews with Director Martin Scorsese, Co-Screenwriter Jay Cocks, Production Designer Dante Ferretti, and Costume Designer Gabriella Pescucci (HD 01:23:25); the 1993 documentary "Innocence And Experience" (SD 25:27); an essay by film critic Geoffrey O'Brien; the theatrical trailer; and a 26-page descriptive booklet.
The 2.39:1 1080p AVC picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, upconverted to 2160p with greater resolution and luminance, was photographed on Eastman film stock with the Arriflex 535 camera system in Super 35 and sourced from a new 4K master Digital Intermediate format. As is typical of a Criterion Collection restoration, the following text appears inside the booklet provided with this Blu-ray release:
"This new digital transfer was created in 4K resolution on a wet-gate Oxberry film scanner from the 35mm original camera negative at Cineric in New York City. The color grading, approved by Martin Scorsese and Editor Thelma Schoonmaker, was done at Sony Colorworks in Culver City, California. The director-approved 5.1 surround soundtrack was remastered by Sony from the original six-track printmaster at Chace Audio in Burbank, California.
The release is sourced from a new 4K restoration that was approved by Director Martin Scorsese. The entire film appears very lush and vibrant; with pleasing film density. Grain is nicely exposed and resolved, as it is visible throughout but never distracting. Film age-related imperfections are removed as best as possible. The color palette is richly and warmly saturated with strong primaries. Fleshtones are naturally hued. Contrast is excellent, with extremely deep and solid blacks and revealing shadow delineation. Lighting plays a dramatic element in the interior scenes, and especially in close-ups. Resolution also is excellent, with fine detail revealed in facial features, skin pores, hair, beards, mustaches, makeup, clothing, and nuanced object texture. This is a wonderfully colorful picture that is effectively filmic and artistic. The film exhibits exquisite period detail throughout. (Gary Reber)
The DTS-HD Master Audio™ 5.1-channel soundtrack was remastered from the six-track presentation and was director-approved. Sadly, the entire soundtrack is frontal focused with only a very nuanced surround level, though, audience applause during opera and play performances does slightly energize the surrounds. Still, the soundtrack is comprised of effective nuanced atmospherics. Elmer Bernstein's score is surprisingly restricted in dynamics and narrowly occupies the frontal soundstage with subtle surround envelopment. This is a marginally good soundtrack that sounds dated and restricting in terms of spatial dimensionality, though, dialogue and narration is clear and effectively integrated spatially. (Gary Reber