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Following (Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] (1999)

Alex Haw , Lucy Russell , Christopher Nolan  |  R |  Blu-ray
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (109 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Alex Haw, Lucy Russell
  • Directors: Christopher Nolan
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Black & White, Full Screen, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Criterion Collection
  • DVD Release Date: December 11, 2012
  • Run Time: 70 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (109 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B009D5LVCE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #49,743 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised by director Christopher Nolan, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • New 5.1 surround sound mix by sound editor Gary Rizzo, presented in DTS-HD Master Audio on the Blu-ray edition
  • Audio commentary by Nolan
  • New interview with Nolan
  • Chronological rendering of the story
  • Side-by-side comparison of three scenes in the film with the shooting script
  • Doodlebug (1997), a three-minute film by Nolan, starring Jeremy Theobald
  • Trailers
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic and programmer Scott Foundas

  • Editorial Reviews

    Before he became a sensation with the twisty revenge story Memento, Christopher Nolan (The Dark Knight) fashioned this low-budget, black-and-white, 16 mm neonoir with comparable precision and cunning. Supplying irrefutable evidence of Nolan’s directorial bravura, Following is the fragmented tale of an unemployed young writer who trails strangers through London, hoping that they will provide inspiration for his first novel. He gets more than he bargained for with one of his unwitting subjects, who leads him down a dark, criminal path. With gritty aesthetics and a made-on-the-fly vibe (many shots were simply stolen on the streets, unbeknownst to passersby), Following is a mind-bending psychological journey that shows the remarkable beginnings of one of today’s most acclaimed filmmakers.

    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    101 of 103 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Exceptional DVD January 5, 2002
    If you're looking at this DVD, odds are it's because you saw "Memento" and wondered about the director, Christopher Nolan. Let's cut to the chase: Yes, "Following" is similar to "Memento" -- its narrative jumps around in a similar way, to start with -- and yes, it's basically just as good a movie. If you're wanting to stumble across a great young film noir director, Christopher Nolan is your guy, and this movie is well worth a look. Make that two or three looks.
    I have to say, when I read the DVD case and saw that this plot wasn't told chronologically, the first word that came to mind was "gimmick." For "Memento" it made sense to tell things backward, because of the whole memory-impairment center of the story, but here Nolan was doing it again in an earlier movie? I was set to see a sort of warmup run, especially because this one was made with almost no budget at all.
    Okay, so I was wrong. "Following" tells a few different lines of the story at once, but it doesn't tell them in reverse; here the idea is that the story's framework is a conversation between our main character and another man who's interviewing him in the opening moments. In the (dryly funny) director commentary, Nolan says he's trying to provide the viewer with details and themes in a "conversational" way. Maybe that's a conceit, but dang it, the mixed up storyline worked on this one too.
    Two other common points of the two movies: they're built on incredibly spare, lean writing, and they really, really reward watching at least twice.
    Following, if anything, is even more minimalistic than Memento; it's literally true that you come out of the movie not knowing any of the characters' real names.
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    18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Smart and Clever (4 1/2 stars) December 15, 2001
    Christopher Nolan is a very talented director who proves how talented he is with his first "no-budget" movie, "Following." This a dark film noir that will keep you thinking and guessing until the shocking last scene.
    Bill is a struggling writer who has been on his own for quite sometime. During that time he has become very bored and needs to find ways to kill time. He starts to follow people... anybody who seemed interesting to him. At first it was supposed to be a way for him to gather material for characters in his stories, but soon he becomes obsessed and cannot stop following people. Once a thief, Cobb, catches Bill in the act, he decides to allow him to enter his world of robbing houses, showing Bill how to really violate the lives of strangers. Soon everything starts to spin out of control and things for Bill will never be the same as he starts to learn that somebody just might be trying to use him as a decoy.... but a decoy for what? This dark film noir will keep you watching and thinking, even when it's all said and done. Then, you're going to want to watch it again.
    Very much like "Memento," Nolan screws around with time, forcing us to remember exactly what has happened and the order they occurred in. However, the movie is not backwards, it is very much out of order in parts, so pay attention to every little detail that you come across. Is this film confusing? Yes, it is, or at least the first time you see it. This is a movie that will require you to watch it at least two times. Although I thought this was a good movie, I was a little disappointed with the length of the movie. It is only 70 minutes long, which isn't very long at all. It's also not widescreen, but I'm sure that' s because it wasn't filmed that way.
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    21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Original and Compelling May 14, 2002
    By kamus
    Christopher Nolan puts Hollywood to shame with this no-budget film. Proving that good scripts, good directors and good actors are the key ingredients that constitute good movies, not swollen budgets, big "stars" or special effects Nolan has created a very compelling film indeed. Although it's a no budget affair, it sure doesn't feel like it. The B&W treatment feels like a natural complement to the gritty story and turns a potential limitation into an asset- it actually has a real artistic visual style. The performances are first rate as well, but what really floats this movie is the terrific script that will draw you in and keep you in suspense right up until the last frame. Then you'll want to see it again immediately. How many movies do you have that reaction to? The non-chronological narrative is dealt with masterfully and gives an already intriguing story a further dimension. An added bonus is Nolan's astute commentary and the alternate angle view of the shooting script, both wonderful resources for the aspiring filmmaker but fascinating for the rest of us too.
    I saw this film accidentally because I grabbed the box too hastily from the video store, but boy am I glad I did!
    Highly recommended.
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    6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Add me to Chris Nolan's growing 'Following' June 10, 2002
    Wes Anderson made "Bottle Rocket" for no money, and then followed it up with the critically lauded "Rushmore". Darren Aronofsky made "Pi" for no money, and then followed it up with the critically lauded "Requiem for a Dream". Richard Linklater, Guy Ritchie, and Tom Tykwer, some of my favourite filmmakers working today, have all followed this formula for success.
    Add Christopher Nolan's name to this list. Before making the critically lauded smash "Memento", he hunkered down and wrote an engrossing script, raised a minimal amount of capital, cast some amateur/non-actors, found some cheap black and white film, and took to the streets guerrilla-style to complete his first film. What we get is the engrossing neo-noir of "Following".
    And we also get a kind of proto-"Memento". Nolan, in what some may call a gimmick, again utilizes an irregular story structure to tell the tale of a lonely man caught up in extraordinary circumstances. The story, complicated enough if it were told straight (more on that later) is divided into three acts. The trick is that all three acts are told simultaneously; a scene from one follows a scene from another, which follows a scene from the third. The effect is somewhat jarring: protagonist Bill (or is it Danny? Or, as the credits denote him, The Young Man) sometimes has long hair and a goatee, sometimes sports a short haircut and a clean suit, and sometimes shows the cuts and bruises from a brutal beating. All within consecutive scenes. Fear not, for there is a method to Nolan's madness. He does his best to play fair with the audience, to provide them with visual clues so they can tell where they are in the story. Nolan, as he later would show with "Memento", is a masterful puppeteer, controlling all the limbs of his story with skill and precision.
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    3.0 out of 5 stars Not Available in HD
    Don't bother ordering in HD format--it's not HD. So save yourself $1.
    Published 1 month ago by E. Johnson
    3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad for one of Nolan's first projects
    I’ve enjoyed most of Christopher Nolan’s movies and this one isn’t really an exception. It certainly isn’t as good as his later stuff, but for one of his first endeavors and, what... Read more
    Published 3 months ago by Elizabeth M. Cass
    1.0 out of 5 stars Good Movie, Bad video experience.
    The sound on the video was not clear when i played it on tv. Also, was not able to chrome cast the video to TV in fullscreen mode, which is a pain.
    Published 4 months ago by Madhan
    3.0 out of 5 stars No budget film
    A bit of a snooze, but fun if you like puzzles. He kind of ripped off usual suspects. Low budget is an understatement.
    Published 5 months ago by sxxxxzsssQsssccxxcdzcxvvnec cededxcwdefc cf fcssx,xv f zcccnjvbbbbvvvv vvvvvvvvv
    3.0 out of 5 stars Expected
    Good but not surprising. The patsy was set up all along, and it was a bit dated, simple minded, and 50's Twilight Zone
    Published 6 months ago by CS
    4.0 out of 5 stars Off beat and interesting, short jewel
    Intricate. Realistic. Well acted. Keeps your interest even though you can see the denouement coming. Acting was solid but not memorable.
    Published 7 months ago by William R, Gohsorn
    4.0 out of 5 stars Noir short shot from Nolan
    I know nothing of the history of the film except that Chris Nolan directed it. It is classic noir done...well...classically. Read more
    Published 7 months ago by Fred
    5.0 out of 5 stars Smart, suspenseful. Surprise ending.
    To call this a crime caper is like saying Hitchcock's Psycho is about a murder. This is Chris Nolan's first film before winning wide recognition with commercial projects like... Read more
    Published 7 months ago by David Lang
    4.0 out of 5 stars Really interesting.
    I was lukewarm on it for almost the entire first viewing... And then all of a sudden it ended and, looking back, I really enjoyed it. Read more
    Published 7 months ago by D. Bisciglia
    5.0 out of 5 stars Early Christopher Nolan Film Shows Suspense Mastery
    In an hour and ten minutes, Nolan cuts forward and backwards in the story of a would-be writer who gets hooked on following random strangers in the street. Read more
    Published 7 months ago by Drew Zimmerman
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