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The Gospel According to Matthew (Dual Format Blu-ray + DVD) [Non-USA Format, Region B/2, UK Import] (1964)

Pier Paolo Pasolini  |  Blu-ray
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (94 customer reviews)

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Region 2 encoding (This DVD will not play on most DVD players sold in the US or Canada [Region 1]. This item requires a region specific or multi-region DVD player and compatible TV. More about DVD formats.)

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Product Details

  • Directors: Pier Paolo Pasolini
  • Format: Subtitled, Anamorphic, DVD+Blu-ray
  • Language: Italian
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Studio: Eureka/Masters of Cinema
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (94 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #67,145 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

Legendary director (and avowed atheist) Pier Paolo Pasolini's The Gospel According to Matthew [Il vangelo secondo Matteo] is one of the great retellings of the story of Christ a cinematic rendering (filmed by invitation from the Pope, no less) at once both passionate and poetic.

With stunning black-and-white photography, an eclectic soundtrack (Odetta, Bach, a Congolese mass, etc), and using a cast of non-professionals who voice dialogue drawn directly from scripture, The Gospel According to Matthew depicts the key events in the life of Christ, from immaculate conception to death on the cross.

Vaunted by the Vatican as one of its select few recommended films, acclaimed by the Archbishop of Canterbury as a "great film", and revered by critics and audiences alike, Pasolini's Oscar-, Golden Lion-, and BAFTA-nominated film remains a magnificent, awe-inspiring experience.

SPECIAL DUAL FORMAT EDITION: New high-definition transfer in the film s original aspect ratio
Original Italian theatrical trailer for the feature
Sopralluoghi in Palestina [Scouting in Palestine], Pasolini s 1965 film on the surveying of locations for The Gospel According to Matthew
A 1963 newsreel extract on The Gospel According to Matthew and Sopralluoghi in Palestina
A selection of outtakes from the original Sopralluoghi in Palestina rushes
Newly translated optional English subtitles on both films
A 36-page booklet featuring a 1963 letter by Pasolini to Lucio S. Caruso of the Catholic Pro Civitate Christiana; a 2012-updated essay on the film by critic Pasquale Iannone; excerpts from a 1969 interview with Pasolini by Oswald Stack, on The Gospel According to Matthew and Sopralluoghi in Palestina; an excerpt from the Book of Matthew; and rare archival imagery

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
128 of 133 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pasolini's first masterpiece November 29, 2003
This is one of the most astonishing films I have seen: probing, complex, lyrical, and at times emotionally overwhelming. NOTE: Do not blame WaterBearer for the poor-quality DVD; the Pasolini Foundation, which controls the film, provided the print and also vetoed chapters to encourage viewers to watch it only in its entirety. The overly edge-enhanced image is improved by turning your TV's sharpness setting to its 'blurriest.'
Can you imagine a less likely candidate to make what, after 40 years, may still be the greatest and most moving film about Jesus Christ? Pasolini was not only a gay Marxist but a devout atheist. His fascination with Jesus may have connected with his most personal theme, that of the outsider (with his artistic, political and sexual nature, he saw himself as the consummate outsider). Although one of Italy's leading intellectuals, he also moved among the laborers, indigents, and hustlers (some of whom were his lovers, not to mention the inspiration for his early poetry and novels), whose counterparts two millennia earlier had walked with Jesus.
Jesus's story also let Pasolini explore the complexities of real-world politics even while recreating an ancient culture with astonishing immediacy. He also relished the opportunity to play with a vast, and eclectic, artistic tradition, from Jean-Luc Godard's striking documentary style in "the two trials of Christ.... to painting... Piero della Francesca (in the Pharisees' clothes), Byzantine art, Christ's face like a Rouault, etc."
We also see El Greco not only in some compositions but in the intriguing casting of Enrique Irazoqui, a Catalan economics student, as Jesus. Pasolini had also considered such young, subversive literary lions as Jack Kerouac and Yevgeny Yevtushenko.
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102 of 106 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too good to be true October 23, 2004
A budget release of Pasolini's _Gospel According to St. Matthew_ would seem too good to be true. Alas, this particular DVD proves neither good nor true.

The only soundtrack here is the English-dubbed version. The original Italian-language soundtrack is not available, and the sound mix is seriously compromised whenever the dubbing is inserted. Ironically, this budget version boasts a slightly better transfer than the thirty-dollar deluxe edition. But even so, the picture is barely watchable, and even shows a few lines here and there that make the film look as if it had been copied off an old VCR.

Despite the fact that this DVD is seven minutes shorter than the film's official running time, it doesn't seem to lack any footage. But the film does run at a faster speed than it ought, which throws the editing off kilter and makes the dubbing feel a little rushed. There are no extras, of course.

_Gospel According to St. Matthew_ is one of a few truly great religious films, but it has yet to receive even an adequate presentation on DVD.
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49 of 52 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Great film, poor DVD August 4, 2003
By A Customer
Pasolini's "The Gospel According to St. Matthew" is one of the great Italian director's most accessable films. It is also one of the few films about the life of Christ that looks and feels as if it was filmed during the time that Christ lived - this is no Hollywood production - this feels like the real thing (the one star is not for this 5 star film.)
However I want to warn potential purchasers that this Water Bearer version is a high priced non-anamorphic, poor quality print (although it claims to be digitally remastered), it has burned in subtitles with no chapter stops. I had thought DVD production and quality had improved greatly in the last couple of years, this is an unfortunate (1 star) exception. If you want to see another great Pasolini film with a great anamorphic almost pristine transfer I would direct you to MGM's version of his "The Decameron".
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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
By C. Bono
***** Pasolini's wonderful black and white Italian language film speaks for itself!

*** The information Legend provides on the back cover of the DVD is confusing/misleading/mistaken...

Legend's DVD actually contains two versions of The Gospel According to St. Matthew ...

Version #1 (sadly of little or no merit)

- Colorized

- Dubbed in English

- No Subtitles

- Approx 90 minutes (not the complete film)

- Anamorphic widescreen

- Playable from the Main Menu

Version #2 (merits ***)

- Black and white

- in Italian

- With English subtitles that are always on

- Approx 137 minutes (the complete film)

- Widescreen, but not anamorphic

- Playable from Special Features

- Pasolini's great film speaks for itself

- Thank you Legend for making a watchable, complete original version of the film available !!!
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wrong language June 20, 2001
Format:VHS Tape|Verified Purchase
This is great movie and all the other reviewers say is true. But if you can, do not get the version offered by Amazon, dubbed in English. Get the one in Italian, with subtitles. The English voice of Jesus does not capture the rage the Italian counterpart expresses. Also, the Italian original is 137 minutes long, the dubbed version only 122. I am not sure which scenes are missing. But there was one in the original with a communist era official funeral music. That one is sadly absent in the dubbed version.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Don't waste your time & money.
Published 12 days ago by Skinner
3.0 out of 5 stars This is a great piece of art that has been ruined with the ...
This is a great piece of art that has been ruined with the English dubbing. I hate it. Why ruin such a beautiful film. Stupid. Upload an original in Italian. Read more
Published 28 days ago by Rene' Wischow
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
i feel like a motherless child !
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Simply beautiful.
Published 3 months ago by k clay
1.0 out of 5 stars This is the English-dubbed and cut version, so beware ...
This is the English-dubbed and cut version, so beware. Unless you can't read subtitles or are a fan of voices not matching lip movement, look for the original Italian uncut... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Michael H. Hutchins
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping
I first saw this movie a couple years after it first came out in the 1960s. Watching it was one of the most profoundly moving experiences I have ever had. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Doug Erlandson
1.0 out of 5 stars Would not recommend
Just saw the beginning of this movie. Very, very slow. Would not recommend based on what I had seen.
Maybe the film got better, but I did not give it a chance.
Published 5 months ago by Marlene Boobar
5.0 out of 5 stars Best film ever made on the life of Jesus Christ.
The best film ever made on the life of Christ. Every piece of dialogue is directly from the Gospels of St. Matthew. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Ethan Nielson
4.0 out of 5 stars Four stars for the movie, not the product
I'm reviewing the original black and white Italian film, not the colorized, dubbed, and condensed version that is the main feature on the DVD. Read more
Published 6 months ago by The Great White Father
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful colorization on a classic film
Legend did a fabulous job in colorization of this film so not sure why other consumers were finding fault-remember too this is entertainment-maybe those consumers were film... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Deidre Ann
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