7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Stunning DVD for one of Lean's forgotten gems.,
This review is from: Ryan's Daughter (Two-Disc Special Edition) (DVD)
For many, it would be easy to overlook this film by David Lean. The film, as well as Mr. Lean, was thoroughly roasted by the critics upon its release as being self-indulgent and boring; a claim that still colors its reputation some 35 years later. Its running time is over 3 hours (with an intermission) and its pacing can easily be dismissed as tedious for those addicted to today's more hyper-speed level of storytelling. But it is a beautifully told, magical film, that slowly lingers and draws in its viewer, delivering an incredible evening's fare. Though it does not rise to the level of Lean's masterpiece, "Lawrence of Arabia," it certainly offers many brilliantly directed moments and breathtaking photography, making it a "must see" for any film lover.
Warner Bros., after an incredibly long wait, has released a beautiful and appropriate DVD release for this classic film. The film looks incredible!! Really, it just looks awesome! The colors are pristine, the print is crystal clear and free from age. I could not believe how stunning the picture looks. The film is spread over 2 discs, offering the optimum bit rate to ensure a top-notch transfer. The sound has been remixed to Dolby Digital 5.1 and, though it is far from reference quality, supports the film very well. (However, on my system, the music sounded incredibly flat. Particularly the Overture.)
There is a bounty of extras that include a thoroughly engaging and informative audio commentary from a wide-range of participants. The commentaries have been perfectly edited together to form a cohesive narrative that runs throughout the picture. Very well done. The additional DVD-specific documentary is of the traditional fare (helmed by the DVD extras master himself, Laurent Bouzereau), offering rare interviews with David Lean and writer, Robert Bolt, as well as recent interviews with many of the film's production crew, recent Lean biographers, and others. Plenty of good stuff to go around.
All-in-all this is an outstanding DVD release for one of Lean's most under-appreciated works. If you haven't seen it, get this DVD. If you have seen it, get this DVD, it will be a welcomed addition to your collection.