Yesterday, Today And Tomorrow

Yesterday, Today And Tomorrow (1963)
The Asylum
Cast: Sophia Loren, Marcello Mastroianni
Extras: Poster and Still Gallery, Theatrical Trailer, Reprinted Booklet

’Yesterday, Today And Tomorrow’ marks the DVD debut of a new studio named ’No Shame Films.’ It is a label dedicated to ring some great European films to American audiences in unprecedented quality and if ’Yesterday, Today And Tomorrow’ is any indication for the quality to expect, they will soon become fan favorites like Anchor Bay and Blue Underground.

This Italian comedy from 1963 starring Sophia Loren and Marcello Mastoianni is a delightful romp that so underscores the lightheartedness and innocence of the times. It consists of three separate vignettes, called ’Adelina,’ ’Anna’ and ’Mara’ – all with a lascivious, sexual tone. The final vignette – and the DVD – culminates in a striptease by Sophia Loren that has become notorious over the years and has been copied by other filmmakers more than once. All in all it’s fun to watch.

No Shame seems to have spared no expenses with this release. The image transfer is remarkable to say the least. Coming from the original 2-perf negative the image is absolutely clean throughout the entire presentation. A bit of grain is evident which is a result of the 2-perf process, of course, but even given that, it is remarkable restrained even in the most difficult shots. The amount of detail in the transfer is very good and the transfer has a silky quality overall that is very pleasing and belies the film’s age and origins. Colors are vibrant and richly saturated while black levels are deep, giving the image good depth. Presented in a 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer, this film looks better than anyone could have asked for, ever.

On the audio side, the DVD features the original mono track of the film in Italian and English language, complete with optional subtitles. Clean and clear the audio is free of distortion and also leaves a great impression despite its age and original technical limitations.

As supplements the DVD contains an extensive gallery of poster art from all over the world, as well as a large number of still photos. The theatrical trailer of the US version is also included. As a very special treat for fans, No Shame has also included a complete reprint of the original Japanese press book. Filled with lots of information – in Japanese – a wealth of black and white and color photos, this is a collectible item you don’t find very often any more as part of DVD releases. As I mentioned earlier No Shame seems to have spared no expense to make an impression, and the certainly succeed.

For fans of Italian cinema, ’Yesterday, Today And Tomorrow’ is a wonderful release. Without even the slightest flaws. It is a funny and entertaining film that brings us Sophia Loren and Marcello Mastrioanni in most enjoyable performances, making for a great classic Italian comedy. Check it out and I’m sure you’ll be impressed.