The Leopard (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]
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*The Film - Visconti's original Italian version (185:52)
Audio commentary by Peter Cowie (film scholar)
English HoH subtitles (removable)
2.21:1 Anamorphic NTSC (Super Technirama OAR)
Italian Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono
"A Dying Breed: The Making of The Leopard", a new documentary featuring interviews with Claudia Cardinale, screenwriter Suso Ceccho D'Amico, cinematographer Giuseppe Rotunno, filmmaker Sydney Pollack, and many others (61:31)
Interview with producer Goffredo Lombardo (19:30)
Video interview with professor Millicent Marcus of the University of Pennsylvania on the history of the Risorgimento (13:36)
- Stills gallery of rare behind-the-scenes production photos
- Italian newsreel footage (3:11)
- Italian theatrical trailer (3:40)
- American theatrical trailers (2) (3:46)
*The Film - alternate American release (161:23)Subtitles:NonePicture format:2.35:1 Anamorphic NTSC Soundtrack(s):English Dolby Digital 1.0 MonoCase type:Special CaseNotes:Black Triple Alpha case
Disc 1 is region-free (R0); discs 2 and 3 are encoded R1
The film is in many ways a happy accident. The surprising choice of Burt Lancaster for the role of the Prince seems to be perfect now, yet he was chosen after Laurence Olivier by director Visconti. It was very much an international production designed to appeal to audiences across the world hence it also stars Alain Delon from France.
In either version - the extended or the edited ones are both in this set - the film is a swirl of brilliant performances and directorial finesse. To my mind, the extended version does not add a great deal to the overall impact of the film, but it interesting to see it.
The only lapse in the translation from Lampedusa's novel, is that you cannot grasp the internal monologues of the Prince as he ruminates on death and the changing situation of the times. Occasionally, Visconti allows the Prince to state these thoughts, but he never delivers the full weight of them. This probably says more about the limits of cinema as an artform. On the other hand, the book does not convey the beauty of the palaces or the visual splendor of Sicily.
In some scenes such as the arrival of Claudia Cardinale, the battle of Palermo, and the final ball, Visconti seems to reach a different level in film making. While some find Visconti slow, I find the detail of each scene so interesting that I actually want more time.
The disc set also has an outstanding commentary by film historian Peter Cowie who completes an excellent presentation of the film. The attached documentary is of minor interest. Overall, a beautiful set in homage to one of the finest films ever made - certainly Visconti's masterpiece.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
excellent film------read the book too, much more illuminating about life in general and Italy and Sicily during that period in particular-----do not miss eitherPublished 3 days ago by Frances Book Lover
spectacular, slow moving for the most part, but an opportunity to absorb the beauty of the surroundings. Thought Burt Lancaster was ideal
as the prince. Read more
This powerful historic epic will appeal to lovers of films like Gone With the Wind and Doctor Zhivago. Read morePublished 2 months ago by horse with no name
I love this film; it’s one of my favorites. But the transfer of this particular version (streamed) has pumped up the saturation of the colors so high that it is like watching a... Read morePublished 2 months ago by kolekatkrush
Searing portrait of Sicilian politics at the time of Garibaldi. Burt Lancaster's prince transforms from arrogant aristocrat to broken remnant of a disappearing world when he sees... Read morePublished 2 months ago by finnbarotuama
Very slow-going! 3 hours long. Burt Lancaster is not a natural in this role. The movie does give a good glimpse of the downfall of the ducal nobility and the change-over to the... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Willamette Queen
While beautiful, I couldn't get through this slow moving film.Published 4 months ago by Maxine Moritz
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