Restored Director's Cut, Director's Cut
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
You'll be seeing stars and stripes as the most fascinating leaders in American history come to life in 1776, a musical about the birth of a nation! With the Boston Harbor still stained from over-taxed British tea, a revolution is brewing in the colonies! And now England has thousands of troops headed for America's shores to squelch her subjects' freedom-loving spirit! It's up to John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson to convince a stubborn congress of British colonists to unite as American patriots turn the inevitable war with England into a Declaration of Independence!
The 2002 DVD release of 1776 offers the 168-minute "director's cut" version of the film, which is about 20 minutes longer than the VHS release (though still shorter than the previously released 180-minute laserdisc, which director Peter H. Hunt has said included some material he didn't care for). Among the additions are a main title with overture, an introductory verse to "He Plays the Violin," and more balance to the conservative Southern bloc of the Congress, especially in the musical number "Cool Considerate Men," which--according to Hunt and screenwriter Peter Stone on the DVD's commentary track--was removed at the request of President Nixon and supposed to have been destroyed. Hunt and Stone also offer historical background, comparisons to the original Broadway show (which they also directed and wrote), comments on what the cast is doing 30 years later, and satisfaction with this restoration (perhaps it will also lead to a long-awaited CD release of the soundtrack?). Picture and sound are very good, the widescreen anamorphic picture preserves the film's wide tableaux, and five brief screen tests are worth watching once. In sum, it's a very satisfying and often engrossing treatment of a lesser known but much loved musical. --David Horiuchi
- Restored director's cut edition
- Screen tests for William Daniels (John Adams), Ray Middleton (Colonel Thomas McKean), James Noble (Rev. Jonathan Witherspoon), Leo Leyden (George Read), and Rex Robbins (Roger Sherman)
Would you like to tell us about a lower price?
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
There have been numerous cuts of “1776,” starting with a 141-minute theatrical version producer Jack L. Warner supervised, one that removed the song “Cool, Cool, Considerate Men,” arbitrarily trimmed a pair of others and discarded various dialogue exchanges. It was also released in mono. Pioneer’s Special Edition laserdisc from the early ‘90s restored all the missing bits, some from a rough B&W workprint, plus remastered the soundtrack in stereo for the first time. This 177-minute version, which Hunt signed off on at the time, came complete with an “editorially created” Overture and Intermission and has been the preferred choice for die-hards fans of the film, even after Hunt’s DVD “Director’s Cut” debuted a decade ago. The latter Hunt reworking ran 165 minutes but missed several components of the longer version, including the unexpurgated versions of early songs “Piddle, Twiddle and Resolve” and “The Lees of Old Virginia.”
Sony’s highly anticipated new Blu-Ray restores the “Piddle, Twiddle” and “Lees” numbers to their full length for the first time in HD – and since their laserdisc appearance – in a new “Extended Version” running 168 minutes. This version, exclusive to the Blu-Ray, is missing the controversial Overture/Intermission but only about a minute of actual footage from the laserdisc (a shot of Jefferson looking out a window at a little girl; Lyman Hall walking into Congress; and brief footage of a lamplighter at work while Franklin steals a piece of fruit from a Philadelphia market). Subsequently, this new edition should satisfy many viewers as it finally includes all the unexpurgated musical material from the picture in a beautiful 4K mastered transfer.
It should be noted, however, that those missing bits are not included in this disc’s deleted scenes section, making that old Pioneer release still a valuable one for collectors. Instead, Sony’s deleted scenes section merely includes the “Piddle Twiddle” and “Lees” extended bits separately with Hunt’s commentary, along with an a cleaned-up line of dialogue, “Privy,” that has been replaced for this edit. Sony’s Blu-Ray also includes Hunt’s 165-minute “Director’s Cut,” and it should be noted several sections of Ray Heindorf’s sometimes unnecessary underscore have been removed – with one restoration from the DVD version – here, again making the Pioneer laserdisc edition relevant for fans.
The 1080p (2.40) high-def transfer offers a colorful, marvelously detailed 4K image, and the 5.1 DTS MA stereo audio bears the widest channel separation heard since the laserdisc release. Extra features, in addition to the underwhelming deleted scenes, include a new, only sporadically interesting commentary with Hunt, Daniels and Howard, plus the DVD’s commentary with Hunt and Peter Stone, who has since passed on. A full array of screen tests, several seen here for the first time, and a pair of trailers round out a must-have release for “1776″ fans, available June 2nd from Sony with a digital copy also on-hand. Bravo!
Most recent customer reviews
...more proof that Darwin was wrong and we are actually devolving.
William Daniels will always be John Adams to me....(and Dr.Read more