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Brazil (Fully Restored with Bonus Footage)


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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Jonathan Pryce, Robert De Niro. Filled with Terry Gilliam's trademark humor and visual inventiveness, Brazil takes place in a futuristic world where individualism is revoked by a controlling state. In spite of it all, a civil servant dreams of overcoming the bureaucracy, winning over the woman he loves and reinstating true justice. A satirical, imaginative and ambitious film. 1985/color/131 min/NR/widescreen.

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If Franz Kafka had been an animator and film director--oh, and a member of Monty Python's Flying Circus--this is the sort of outrageously dystopian satire one could easily imagine him making. However, Brazil was made by Terry Gilliam, who is all of the above except, of course, Franz Kafka. Be that as it may, Gilliam sure captures the paranoid-subversive spirit of Kafka's The Trial (along with his own Python animation) in this bureaucratic nightmare-comedy about a meek governmental clerk named Sam Lowry (Jonathan Pryce) whose life is destroyed by a simple bug. Not a software bug, a real bug (no doubt related to Kafka's famous Metamorphosis insect) that gets smooshed in a printer and causes a typographical error unjustly identifying an innocent citizen, one Mr. Buttle, as suspected terrorist Harry Tuttle (Robert De Niro). When Sam becomes enmeshed in unraveling this bureaucratic glitch, he himself winds up labeled as a miscreant.

The movie presents such an unrelentingly imaginative and savage vision of 20th-century bureaucracy that it almost became a victim of small-minded studio management itself--until Gilliam surreptitiously screened his cut for the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, who named it the best movie of 1985 and virtually embarrassed Universal into releasing it. This DVD version of Brazil is the special director's cut that first appeared in Criterion's comprehensive (and expensive) six-disc laser package in 1996. Although the DVD (at a fraction of the price) doesn't include that set's many extras, it's still a bargain. --Jim Emerson


Special Features

  • Production Notes
  • Cast and Filmmakers
  • Trailer

  • Product Details

    • Actors: Jonathan Pryce, Robert De Niro, Michael Palin, Katherine Helmond, Ian Holm
    • Directors: Terry Gilliam
    • Writers: Terry Gilliam, Tom Stoppard, Charles McKeown
    • Producers: Arnon Milchan
    • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Letterboxed, NTSC, Widescreen
    • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
    • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
    • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
    • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
    • Number of discs: 1
    • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
    • Studio: Universal Studios
    • DVD Release Date: March 31, 1998
    • Run Time: 143 minutes
    • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (560 customer reviews)
    • ASIN: 0783225903
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,319 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
    • Learn more about "Brazil (Fully Restored with Bonus Footage)" on IMDb

    Customer Reviews

    Brazil is my favorite movie - as opposed to being the best movie I've ever seen which it is not.
    Charmerci
    Then there is also Gilliam's brilliant eye for composition; every shot in Brazil is meaningful in one way or another, and contributes to the film as a whole.
    Phrodoe
    The plot seemed like it was supposed to make sense yet I couldn't get my head around a few points in the film and their meaning.
    Jonathan Kush

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews

    Format: DVD
    Terry Gilliam's classic satire returns to DVD in a spiffed up edition from Criterion. Featuring a high definition anamorphic remaster the picture looks great (and it has been enhanced for 16x9 TVs so it will fill the screen)the sound has been remastered as well. Is it worth picking up again? Absolutely if you're a fan of the film. The single disc edition is basically the same as the first disc in the three disc set--it includes Gilliam's commentary track as part of the package as well as the "Final Cut" version of the film that runs 142 minutes (vs. 131 for the regular DVD release).

    The good news is that unlike the previous edition,"Brazil" has been digitally remastered with special attention paid to cleaning up the film so we don't have all the bits of dirt and debris that occasionally marred the original DVD transfer (which was essentially a DVD transfer of the original laserdisc version).

    If you purchased the three disc set and want to upgrade you could just pick up this single disc edition as the extras are exactly the same as the previous edition (unless you want the remastered "Love Conquers All" 92 minute edit done by Universal to make it more commercial). Be aware though that the single disc edition doesn't have any of the material from the third disc of the boxed set. That disc documented the insanity that surrounded the film when Universal deemed it not commercial enough.

    Why it took Criterion so long to get this new improved version to market is anyone's guess (and why it took them so long to adopt anamorphic transfers as well). This really is the way it should have been released in the first place. Either way this edition looks and sounds great. It has a terrific commentary track by director Gilliam, an essay but no other extras.
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    364 of 407 people found the following review helpful By Daniel L Edelen TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 6, 2004
    Format: DVD
    There are a million different takes on the actual movie "Brazil," but what I hope to do in this review is actually rate the collection put together by Criterion.
    The 3-DVD box set of "Brazil" starts off with the "final final" director's cut of the film, topping out at 142 minutes. (There are eight minutes of footage added to this release.) The film is presented in its original 1.85:1 dimensions. Fact is, the transfer of the movie is so-so.
    For all the Criterion hoopla, the print here is flawed. The notes pay tribute to a few digital scratch removers, but I was truly surprised by the amount of garbage in the print (dirt, empty spots, and such) that litter the frames. One of Sam's initial dream flights has considerable gunk inhabiting the lower left corner, and any frame by frame analysis will reveal an endless parade of bits of stuff inhabiting every shot. To be honest, I expected a lot more here and if there is any criticism of this collection, it lies with this fault primarily. They could have cleaned everything up considerably more than they did. And that's a shame at this price.
    Colors and contrast in the print look good, though, and the sound is fabulous. They pulled out a full stereo soundtrack and made it sing, so kudos there, too. The sound is clean and vibrant.
    The booklet detailing the film is good, but not the best I've seen, even for a lesser boxset. The content listings for the other two DVDs are little more than a single overview sheets.
    Director Terry Gilliam's commentary track on the first disc is priceless and fascinating, almost worthy of the cost for the set alone. As a film geek, I personally find all director commentaries to be interesting, so I may not be the best judge.
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    218 of 242 people found the following review helpful By John DiBello on November 27, 1999
    Format: DVD
    Three discs? *Three* discs? That's what you're probably thinking if you're looking at this and *not* a fan of one of the finest films of our time. But this exquisite three-disc treatment is probably the best argument for DVD (and thankfully, for Criterion) that I can give you: Watch these discs, listen to the extensive audio commentary, compare Gilliam's brilliant vision with the Hollywood Studio "Love Conquers All" bastardization, er, sorry, recutting (how many directors would include a admittedly contradictory vision of his film on a DVD set just to *show* how Hollywood can drastically reshape a vision?), watch the documentary...you'll come away from this boxed set experience understanding more about film and directing, and sadly, studio politics, than you'll ever get from reading "Variety" (certainly more than I got from filmmaking college courses!) At the heart of it all, though, the many extras and made-with-care package would add up to nothing if the original film itself weren't so bloody brilliant. There's very few modern *directors* who will pull me into the box office just to see a new film...Gilliam is one of them. Even his flops or misfires are more interesting than most. But when he hits on all cylinders (excuse the mixed metaphor) as in "Brazil"...the result is purely sublime. Bravo to Gilliam; bravo to Criterion for giving us the definitive home version of the film(s)--a version impossible on VHS. I love my DVD player!
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    50 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Marc Ruby™ HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on July 20, 2002
    Format: DVD
    Produced in 1985, "Brazil" is a black (and bleak) comedy about a future gone eerily awry. A future that, since this is 2002, is already coming true around us. Terry Gilliam's brilliant, colorfully retro vision of the future has little in common with the styling of Orwell's "1984," but deep inside the message is the nearly the same. The only real difference is that, unlike Orwell, Gilliam believes that the one fragile hope is the durability of the human imagination.
    The opening scenes of the film reveal a manic world, where a bug (literally) in the works triggers the spectacular arrest of one Archibald Buttle, whose off-screen death under interrogation triggers a flurry of clerical paperwork. The world we see is fascinating, full of automation nearly gone berserk and the hapless human machinery that fills in the gaps. In this world, one may not only face hard interrogation, but be billed for that service as well. When Buttle, mistaken for terrorist Harry Tuttle, suffers a heart attack under questioning, Information Retrieval issues a refund. However, his wife's lack of a bank account triggers a series of complications. Sam Lowry (Jonathan Pryce), a daydreaming bureaucrat in the Ministry of Information, takes up the task of resolving the situation by hand delivering the check.
    Harry faces many delightfully comic situations on his quest, as machinery refuses to function for him and the people in his world seem to treat him as something not quite socially acceptable. But all of this is brought up sharply when he finally confronts the widow. "My husband's dead, is he," she cries, "What have you done with his body?" Suddenly we are confronted with the truth. The surface is only a surface. As in "The Matrix," once you are past it something horrific looms.
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    Topic From this Discussion
    anamorphic or not????
    The original release of the Criterion 3 disc set was not anamorphic. Recently, Criterion reissued the set in anamorphic. At the same time they issued the one disc anamorphic edition.
    Jan 8, 2007 by B. Saunders |  See all 10 posts
    Which ending?
    Both Criterion Collection versions have the Terry Gilliam ending, the real one. If you get the triple disc version of the Criterion Collection, then you get both the original version of the film and the 90 minute edited to hell version.
    Jun 4, 2008 by William Hoffknecht |  See all 3 posts
    Prognostications of our modern times Be the first to reply
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