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Director Ridley Scott’s triumphant Gladiator is an unparalleled combination of vivid action and extraordinary storytelling that earned five Oscars® including Best Picture. The Blu-ray presentation will include both the original theatrical version of the film as well as the extended version in 1080p High Definition with English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, French 5.1 Dolby Digital and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, as well as English, English SDH, French, Spanish and Korean subtitles. The two-disc set also will feature over four hours of bonus material.
Stills from Gladiator (Click for larger image)
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The sound was also fantastic. I did not play it on a system capable of handling the overhead sound. But what I got was incredibly engaging, and better balanced with the dialogue than I recall from other copies.
I've watched this film many times, but never since the first time I saw it has it been so engaging. My heart was actually beating pretty fast a number of times when viewing this copy tonight! I don't know if it was the improved visuals or the sound that made it so incredibly visceral this time out. Whatever it was, they've clearly finally addressed all the complaints over the years from reviewers saying they took a lazy approach with previous versions. This one seems really cleaned up, as if a lot of time and attention was given. But that's only fitting for such a popular film, and one so meticulously crafted.
It seems the only definitive way to tell if you have the new version is to look at the innermost rings on the underside of Disc One itself. Hold it up to the light, and at the end of a string of letters and numbers, you should see "B1R2". If you have anything else (i.e. B1R1), you have the original version and NOT the remastered one!
If so, exchange it promptly.
I know that many of the reviews have focused on whether or not the reviewer received the remastered edition. I cannot comment on that because it wasn't a primary selling point for me so I cannot in all honesty state if I received the remastered copy or not. Regardless, I am not disappointed with the picture and sound quality which I thought was excellent.
There are plenty of special features to be had, including commentaries, storyboard designs, and deleted scenes. The bluray comes packaged in a dual disc bluray case. This was honestly the one source of contention for me. I personally felt that a movie this epic, deserved cooler packaging for it's remastered Sapphire Series release. Instead what I got was a cheap dual disc bluray case with no inserts or booklet. Other than that though this is reasonably priced and a great addition to any movie collection.