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on January 22, 2017
This is a great movie (one of my all-time favorites). Old trucks loaded with explosives trundle through a truly treacherous rain forest - with never, ever a dull moment. Casting (all actors are top notch) and screenplay are awesome. Blu-Ray quality is surprising good considering the age of the film. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!!
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on April 23, 2014
Beware !

The 2014 DVD is full frame pan and scan only.

If you do not have Blue Ray, do not buy.

Unbelievable that Warner's would release in this format.
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on May 31, 2014
Tonight we blew up the new Blu Ray restoration of this brilliant film onto a giant projection screen. Although I had seen it multiple times in the past, I have never seen it looking remotely as clear and vibrant as it does in this new edition. Somewhere online, I read some rant by a viewer criticizing the work of restorer, Ned Price. If you check out such examples of his work as this disc and the Blu Ray of "Ben-Hur", I suspect that you will join me in the belief that this "critic" couldn't be more mistaken. As one who worked with film for many years and became all too familiar with the many ways that the images become degraded with use and the passage of time, I can't get over the magic that the great restoration technicians are achieving in cleaning up and, in countless ways, bringing back the rich, brilliant look of first-run prints. Too bad William Wyler couldn't have lived to witness the miracle of his fifty-plus-year-old movie looking brand-new again. William Friedkin made a one-of-a-kind pulse-pounding drama in "Sorcerer" and his collaboration with Mr. Price now allows us to revisit it in a grand state of near perfection…..so exciting!
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on June 17, 2017
William Friedkin's lost masterpiece. A great film about men fighting all odds and not fighting each other towards the goal of self preservation and escaping hell. A must see. Four men dangerously driving two trucks with nitroglycerin to put out a fire 200 miles away in the hills and deserts of South America.
Friedkin showed genius directing The French Connection. He followed that up with the original The Exorcist, the horror masterpiece. Next was this film Sorcerer.
It was not a pop culture smash like the previous two films, but it should have been. It is now a Revived Classic.
Afterwards Friedkin directed another film that struggled during its release but has since found its audience on DVD. The film Cruising showcases Al Pacino in one of his best performances. Luckily in 1985 Friedkin's film To Live and Die in LA received high praise and continues to find new audiences. In the 2000s Friedkin directed two intense versions of plays based on the writings of Tracy Letts.
I can't wait for his new documentary on a real life priest who performed exorcisms. William Friedkin's career and post success speaks for itself.
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on May 17, 2014
I had the only DVD version available for many years, a "pan and scan" standard format (4:3) of the movie, but still thought it was one of the most exciting action movies and interesting character studies ever filmed. I still think that and am so happy to finally upgrade to a restored Blu-Ray edition. It's amazing. No DVD "extras: but that's okay as the film is what I wanted. A nice little book comes with excerpts from the director's book about his life in movies. There are interesting facts about the film, cast, and crew. Roy Scheider gives as great a performance as he did in Jaws, if not more so. I love it when he has a fit. Great action, the main actors give great performances, so in a word, this film is...GREAT! Taken from the same source material as WAGES OF SIN, the French film version is also very good but the characters in Sorceror have different challenges to face and there is more explanation about where these people came from and what led them to this desolate and poverty stricken place where they must attempt such a dangerous ordeal to escape..
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on May 16, 2014
In Sorcerer, William Friedkin, coming off the critical and commercial triumphs of The French Connection and The Exorcist, dared to remake the French classic, Wages of Fear. In 1975, the critics, by and large, didn't like it. The audiences didn't show up.

Well, I saw it way back then and thought it was terrific. I've eagerly awaited the long-delayed Blu-ray release. I like it just as much now. In fact, even though it's sacrilege to say it, I like it more than Wages of Fear.

The cast is solid, the writing is good, and the cinematography is superb. The scene where the explosive-laden truck perilously crosses the rickety bridge is reason enough to see the film. But there's much, much more. In short, this is a timeless adventure story.

On a related note, in his memoir, The Friedkin Connection, the director details the making of this film. Whether on film or via the written word, Friedkin can tell a story. So do what I did--buy the book and the Blu-Ray.
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on June 4, 2014
What a treat to finally see one of my favorite films in the same quality as when I first viewed it during its initial theatrical release. The image and sound quality is truly superb. Watching the movie on my ten-foot Firehawk screen was quite a breathtaking experience: I found myself noticing many little details in the movie that I'd never noticed before.

Watching this restored masterpiece unfold in front of you is definitely a 'nitro-filled' experience!
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on July 5, 2015
Prison in the first world or "freedom" in the third world? That's the option several desperate men find themselves in having fled to a hell hole oil drilling camp in a sweltering jungle filled with poverty, corruption, and lethal dangers - of both the man made and natural varieties.

Friedkin's best film, I think. Unfortunately overshadowed in 1977 by opening at the same time as "Star Wars." Amazing scenes filled with suspense and physical danger filmed on location and in conditions perhaps only a little less miserable for the cast and crew than for the characters portrayed on-screen. 70's pacing, so don't expect much to happen during the first hour. There's action there too, but it's all about describing who the major characters are and how they got stuck in the middle of hell. But after that, it's a white knuckle ride to the end of the film.

Also, "Sorcerer" is just the name of one of the trucks they drive in the movie. There's nothing mystical about the plot - it's just a story of desperate men in a desperate situation. If you like "Papillon," then you'd probably also like this film.
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on February 20, 2016
Depending on your perspective, Sorcerer is either a remake of the classic Henri-Georges Clouzot film Wages of Fear, or uses that film as a launching point for its own story. William Friedkin argues the latter. I was excited to see the film, both to see what an English-language update would look like and because many had reviewed Sorcerer as equal to or superior to Wages of Fear. While I was disappointed and do not believe it a match for the original, it is still a good film.

To its credit, Sorcerer provides the outcasts' backstories, providing a context to each character that is only hinted at in the original. Roy Scheider turns in a typically strong performance as the protagonist Scanlon, and he is well-suited to his role. The production values are high, and Friedkin spared no expense to achieve the sense of grinding tension and foreboding that permeates this film.

Unfortunately, this is one of the areas where the film falls short. In Wages of Fear the continuous fear of instant death throughout the film was a new cinematic experience. Friedkin's version carried some punch, but not as much as the original -- and anyone who had seen the original couldn't avoid seeing it as recycled. For someone seeing the film for the first time without the frame of reference of the original, I believe it would be an enjoyable suspense film.

Where Friedkin most sought to distinguish Sorcerer from Wages of Fear, however, is in his introduction of the supernatural. Fresh from his success with The Exorcist, he was continuing on the theme of the demonic with other films such as The Devil's Triangle. "Sorcerer" is the name of the truck Scanlon drives, and the headlights and grille make it look like a monster. The hallucination sequence (not found in Wages of Fear) reveal a spiritual darkness not shown in the original. In this, I believe Friedkin misses the mark and for me, it reduced the film.

Wages of Fear's end was needlessly nihilistic -- while it was the European fashion of the day, I found the closing sequence pointless and unsatisfying. In this, Sorcerer was better -- it leaves the moviegoer with no less a sense of futility, but with more reason.
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on February 28, 2016
Possibly my favorite movie of all time. Friedkin is one of the best at suspense, and at crossing action with suspense. He's famous for the chase scene in "The French Connection", but to me he surpassed himself with the chase from "To Live and Die in LA". At any rate, while there are no chases in Sorcerer, the same type of action crossed with suspense is present. I don't know of a more gripping scene than two men in an old truck with a load of unstable dynamite,slowly,slowly inching across a rope and wood bridge as it falls apart. That sounds - what's the phrase? - NOT exciting, but honestly it will have you holding your breath thru every tortured lurch and pause. Above all, I guess, it is the story of men with nothing else to lose but their lives, but they *do* have their lives, so far...
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