The Sin of Nora Moran appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.37:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. Even for a movie from 1933, this image seemed problematic.
One concern resulted from print flaws, as those appeared throughout the film. The movie tended to exhibit a flickering quality, and occasional batches of scratches occurred. I also noticed a few gate hairs. Some parts of the film came across as pretty clean, but more than a few showed defects.
Sharpness seemed up and down as well. Without much grain, I suspect some noise reduction came into play, and the image could look a bit on the soft side at times.
Still, most of the movie showed reasonable accuracy. I saw no signs of jaggies or shimmering, and edge haloes remained absent.
Blacks tended to be fairly deep, and low-light shots usually showed reasonable clarity. Given its age, this didn’t become a bad image, but it showed definite issues.
In addition, the movie’s DTS-HD MA monaural soundtrack also had concerns, and some of these connected to background noise, or the lack thereof. Although one would think an absence of clicks, pops and hiss would be a positive, the audio seemed so free from treble that it could become a distraction.
The track clearly got a lot of “denoising” work, as it largely came free from background issues. This meant a somewhat dull tone, as the processes took away high end.
Not that I expect much accuracy from an 87-year-old recording, but the track tended to seem flat. Speech showed some edginess and the lines sounded a bit muted, but they remained intelligible.
Music showed surprisingly robust low end, but again, highs came across as lopped off and bland. The same went for the occasional effects, as they brought fairly clean but dull material. I’d prefer a track with some background noise if it showed superior life to this one.
One extra appears on the disc: a featurette called The Mysterious Life of Zita Johann. In this 17-minute, 19-second piece, we hear from film historian Sam Sherman.
Sherman discusses his experiences with Sin as well as the life of actor Johann and some aspects of the film’s production. Sherman brings a handful of good notes but doesn’t deliver a ton of insights.
We hear too much about his personal experiences with an older Johann, and we also find too many movie clips. These make this a mediocre reel.
The package also provides a booklet. It includes photos, press clippings and an essay from Sherman. The booklet completes the set well.
A thriller from Hollywood’s “pre-Code” days, The Sin Of Nora Moran promises drama and intrigue it can’t deliver. Sluggish and forgettable, the tale never ignites. The Blu-ray comes with mediocre picture and audio as well as minor bonus materials. Chalk up this film as a dull disappointment.