Navratilova ... Evert ... Wimbledon 1978 ... Some Great Tenn
David Von Pein | Mooresville, Indiana; USA | 06/27/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD is a real treat for tennis fans. It serves up the complete, uncut, three-set "Classic Match" at Wimbledon 1978 between two of the greatest female tennis stars in the history of the sport -- Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova. This see-saw battle, which decided the women's singles Wimbledon champion for '78, was a real barn-burner.
Both Evert and Navratilova are on the top of their respective games in this Grand-Slam final, with many of the spectacular shots that come whizzing off the racquets of these two stellar players deserving an instant replay (which is easy to accomplish, thanks to the DVD).
The hard-hitting Czech lefthander, Navratilova, was only 21 years old when this 1978 finals match was played in England. And the Florida-born Miss Evert wasn't much older. Chris was just 23.
These two tennis icons tangled a total of 80 times during their careers, with Martina coming out the victor in 43 of those matches. So, as can be seen by those figures, these two ladies could each hold her own on the court against one another.
I was very pleasantly surprised by the superb video quality I found on this Digital Disc. The footage seen here comes from the BBC-TV archives, and the picture quality is just simply magnificent. Clear as a bell. And for a videotaped source (rather than film), I'd say it looks darn-near pristine. I could almost swear I was watching the match live on TV as it was happening all those many years ago. The colors look accurate and natural, and even far-away background imagery comes out very clear on this disc. The screen ratio is the original television shape of 1.33:1 (Full Frame).
The audio is in Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo, and it is A-OK as well. Very good in fact. The ever-present sound of the racquet hitting the ball comes through crisp and clean, as do the P.A. announcer's frequent scoring updates. Commentary from the team of BBC-TV broadcasters during the match is quite subdued, and kept to an overall minimum. Of course, tennis commentary during a live match is not supremely important. The camera can tell the viewer what's happening. And does.
This disc, part of "The Wimbledon Video Collection" of DVDs distributed by Kultur International Films of New Jersey, runs for a total of 113 minutes (even though the box says only 102).
There are 5 chapter breaks, including an "Introduction", which serves as a mini bio on both Evert and Navratilova. There are even some contemporary interviews in this Intro section, with Pam Shriver, plus Martina Navratilova's parents, and also Chris Evert herself. Nicely-done stuff to set the stage for the upcoming '78 finals match. Chapter 5 features the Wimbledon trophy presentation and some brief comments by Martina (circa late 1990s).
The single-sided DVD comes packaged in a standard keepcase box. The Main Menu is animated with slow-motion, on-the-court images of Navratilova and Evert. A catchy musical theme plays (on a loop) while the Main Menu is visible on screen. A one-sheet paper insert is included in the case, with a chapter list on one side, and an ad for other Wimbledon DVD titles on the reverse side.
I like the photo of Martina and Chris on the front of the case....although I can't help but wonder why the picture is in black-and-white instead of in color?
Well, anyway, this full-length tennis match is presented in color on this DVD....and it looks splendid. So, if you want to see two classy tennis pros in action, battling for that ultimate Wimbledon #1 prize, then pick up this "Classic Match" on DVD.
Another DVD in the "Wimbledon Collection" that I'd also recommend highly is the 2-Disc set containing the 1980 men's frog-strangler of a final, pitting John McEnroe against Bjorn Borg. That incredible match lasts 4 full hours and is shown uncut on that two-DVD edition put out by Kultur Films."
J. BURGESON | Stratford, CT USA | 03/03/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you've forgotten who won this match, and want to keep yourself in suspense, skip through the pre-match interviews, and do not read the packaging. It's a great recording of every moment of the match, with the usual insightful BBC commentary. Video & sound quality is first-rate."