"The Name of the Rose" is a gothic medieval mystery thriller set in a 14th-century Italian monastery. Franciscan monk William of Baskerville (Sean Connery) and a young novice (Christian Slater) arrive for a conference to find that several monks have been murdered in mysterious circumstances. To solve the crimes, William must rise up against the Church authority and fight the shadowy conspiracy of monastery monks using only his wit and intelligence.
Audio Commentary:Commentary by Director Jean-Jaques Annaud
Documentary:Vintage making-of documentary - The Abbey of Crime: Umberto Eco's "The Name of the Rose"
Featurette:All-new Photo Video Journey with Jean-Jacques Annaud
There's more love and care in the 2004 DVD debut of this 1986 film than one would expect. Director Jean-Jacques Annaud is very passionate on the commentary track, going over the intricate production design, discussing his desire to cast those with odd faces ("beautiful landscapes," he insists), and even unloading on star F. Murray Abraham. There's an additional 15 minutes with Annaud, this time on camera, in the "photo journey" that details the production even further. What looks like a standard making-of featurette is actually a 45-minute German TV special with English subtitles. It's a bit different from the usual spin of Hollywood featurettes, and you have to read Sean Connery's interview questions since the German translator talks over the English. The widescreen transfer is solid, and the remastered soundtrack--the first time in Dolby 5.1--helps carry the richness of the original 6-track stereo soundtrack. --Doug Thomas