Cinema Paradiso [Blu-ray]
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Top Customer Reviews
For those who have already seen Cinema Paradiso it needs no introduction. For everybody else, it won the Academy Award for Foreign Language Film in 1989 and features one of the most nostalgic treatments of the role of movies in people's lives. Ennio Morricone's theme song has also been recycled in countless commercials and movie montages and trailers.
What's good about the Director's Cut or "New Version" DVD is that one can view the director's cut with added scenes on one DVD side and the originally released version on the other.
For those of us who wanted some kind of closure to Toto and Elena's relationship, the Director's Cut has it-- there's about an hour more of footage of their relationship. The new version also more footage of Toto's military service and his adulthood. The added scenes somewhat mute the focus of the movie, so I could see why they were originally cut out. But, at the same time, the added scenes fill in the blanks that originally made a lot of us think, "Hey-- What about...?" And although Toto's childhood scenes are, as far as I can tell, unchanged from the original version, we also find out more about Alfredo.
After finishing the New Version I appreciated the original version better. I highly recommend the new version not because it makes Cinema Paradiso more of a masterpiece, but because it adds more characterization to what, arguably, is a masterpiece. The added scenes can be a bit superfluous, but they show how important editorial decisions are to shaping the structure and momentum of a movie.
Initially, the film was considered too long, and massive scenes were cut, removing any and all references to whatever happened to Salvatore's great love, Lina. The original version of the film focused mainly on the young boy, fatherless in post-WWII Sicily, bonding with the childless cinema projectionist, Alfredo. The young Toto grows into the teen-aged Salvatore, who falls in love with the beautiful and unattainable Lina. They are parted. That is the last we see. Salvatore returns to his village many years later to attend the funeral of Alfredo, and the film is told nearly entirely in flashback.
In this version, Salvatore is reunited with his lost love when he returns for the funeral. To think that this entire plot was removed from the film initially is almost unthinkable. There are other parts of the film that could have been edited to keep these additional scenes in. I don't know what the producers, directors or the studio were thinking when they edited a huge part of the movie out.
Well, now the film is complete. Whereas the original version focused mainly on the relationship of Toto and Alfredo, we now see a conclusion to Toto and Lina as well. And, we understand the ending of the film in an entirely, much less sentimental light.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of my all time favorite movies. So beautifully filmed and acted. We all examine what our growing-up meant and this film beautifully allows us to journey with the lead to his... Read morePublished 2 days ago by Ron Painter
The original theatrical version is a masterpiece. The director's version is not, and I'm glad it was not released. Could be my favorite movie of all time.Published 3 days ago by D. C. Small
Authentic and well acted. The movie transported me to an exquisite life, time and place.Published 1 month ago by Kiana
Haven't watched this in in 10 years. Still such a great movie. If you are nostalgic and had an important figure in your upbringing you will love this moviePublished 1 month ago by gino
BEST MOVIE YOU WILL EVER WANT TO SEE! OK, SO I HAVE SOME ITALIAN BLOOD IN ME BUT REALLY IF YOU DON'T LOVE THIS MOVIE YOU HAVE TO HATE THE WORLD. Read morePublished 1 month ago by PAR
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