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Amadeus -- Director's Cut 2-Disc Special Edition [DVD] [1985]

F. Murray Abraham , Tom Hulce , Milos Forman    Parental Guidance   DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (159 customer reviews)
Price: £19.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Amadeus -- Director's Cut 2-Disc Special Edition [DVD] [1985] + Shine [DVD] [1997]
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Product details

  • Actors: F. Murray Abraham, Tom Hulce, Elizabeth Berridge, Roy Dotrice, Simon Callow
  • Directors: Milos Forman
  • Writers: Peter Shaffer
  • Producers: Bertil Ohlsson, Michael Hausman, Saul Zaentz
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English, German, Italian
  • Subtitles: Dutch, English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Korean, Portuguese, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, Polish, Finnish
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: Arabic
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Whv
  • DVD Release Date: 14 Oct 2002
  • Run Time: 179 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (159 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00006JI30
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,349 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



A note-perfect cinematic event whose immortality was assured from its opening night, Amadeus is an unlikely candidate for the Director's Cut treatment. Like one of Mozart's operas, the multiple Oscar-winning theatrical version seemed perfectly formed from the outset--ideal casting, costumes, sets, cinematography, lighting, screenplay, music, music, music--so the reinstatement of an extra 20 minutes simply risks adding "too many notes". Yet though this extended cut can hardly be said to improve a picture that needed no improvement, it does at least flesh out a couple of small subplots and shed new light on certain key scenes.

Here we learn why Constanze Mozart bears such ill-will towards Salieri when she discovers him at her husband's deathbed: he has insulted and degraded her after she came to him for help. We also see deeper into the reasons why Mozart has no pupils: not only has Salieri poisoned the Emperor's mind against him, but the only promisingly lucrative teaching job he can find ends disastrously when he realises that the master of the house just wants music to quiet his barking dogs. In a humiliating coda to that episode, a drunk and desperate Wolfgang returns later to beg for money only to be coldly rejected. The structure of the picture is otherwise unaltered.

On the DVD: Amadeus--The Director's Cut finally accords this masterful work the DVD treatment it deserves. The handsome anamorphic widescreen picture is accompanied by a choice of Dolby 5.1 or Dolby stereo sound options, and it's all contained on one side of the disc (the original single-disc DVD release was that crime against the format, a "flipper"). Director Milos Forman and writer Peter Shaffer provide a chatty though sporadic commentary, but they're obviously still too mesmerised by the movie to do much more than offer the odd anecdote. Disc 2 contains an excellent new hour-long "making of" documentary, with contributions from Forman, Shaffer, Sir Neville Marriner and all the main actors, taking in the scriptwriting, choice of music, casting and problems involved in filming in Communist Czechoslovakia with half the crew and extras working for the Secret Police. --Mark Walker

Product Description

DVD Special Features:

Disc One:
Feature length commentary by Director Milos Foreman and Writer Peter Shaffer
Anamorphic Widescreen 2.35:1
Dolby Digital 5.1

Disc Two:
The Making Of Amadeus Documentary
Cast/Director Career Highlights
Theatrical Trailer

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
65 of 68 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Amazing film...Lazy Transfer 20 Feb 2009
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
This film is definitely one of my favourites films. The fact it won 8 oscars underlines just how amazing the film is - the story,the acting, the editing and the music are extraordinary.

However I gave this 3 stars (and not 6!) simply because the video quality struck me as very lucklustre very quickly. I currently own the directors's cut DVD and to me the difference in quality throughout the film was only marginal. The majority of the transfer definitely showed a deeper range of colour and less signs of video compression. However it just isn't enough to warrant a release on blu ray. Indeed some scenes looked pretty much the same as my DVD, particularly the opening scene. And I'm in the group of people trying to persuade others how good blu ray is.

I mean if you look at how they have restored the Bond films from the 60s, this "upgrade" might well be seen as a rip off. I remember some of the scenes in Dr. No looked spectacular - as if they had been filmed yesterday with bitrates often above 30Mbps in visually rich scenes. Amadeus is certainly not short of visually rich scenes with all the costumes, palaces, salons and stages but nothing was made of it. The VC-1 transfer seemed to hover at around 15Mbps for the majority of the film sometimes climbing to the twenties (and rarely to 30) and sometimes dropping to 6Mbps.

So... if you own the film already on DVD, make sure you really love this film enough to buy it on blu ray. It is better quality - but with the smallest justifiable margin.

If you have not seen the film, buy it already - this film IS brilliant and this is still the best quailty in which you can view it.

EDIT: Some useful comments have been made below regarding the use of excessive Digital Noise Reduction. Plus the Audio Quality does deserve a mention - it is brilliant and is a better upgrade than that of the video quality.
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90 of 95 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superlative and Very Different 19 Oct 2002
By taking a rest HALL OF FAME
"Amadeus", was a great success on stage prior to becoming a film that garnered 8 Academy Awards, together with dozens of other international honors. This director's cut version of the film not only adds 20 minutes to bring this exceptional film to 3 hours, it also has created a spectacular new digital transfer, and most interestingly a new film.
Many special editions and director's cut offerings are little more than the addition of scenes that were dumped prior to the film's original release, and rarely have any fundamental impact on the story that is told. Fully one third of all the chapters in this film have new footage, and the changes have a very real impact on the film. Most of the new exposition is about Salieri and it makes him a much darker character, this Salieri is much more than a jealous admirer of Mozart. This man makes demands of persons and actively intervenes much more in the professional destruction of Mozart in Vienna.
One of the film's mysteries for me was why Mozart's wife held such hatred for Salieri at the close of the film. This question is answered, and it again makes for a major change in how you will view Constanze. And of course more insight is given to Mozart as well. If you are a devotee of the original film you may have trouble warming to this version, you may even be well advised to avoid it. For once you see this film you will never be able to watch the shorter version and confine your thoughts to what they were prior to seeing the additional 20 minutes of film.
There is a second disc that includes extended interviews with Milos Forman, Peter Shaffer, and many of the main characters. An interesting aspect that is shared is that this entire film was shot behind the Iron Curtain of the USSR when it was still the nemesis of The United States.
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32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Worthwhile Re-release 10 Mar 2003
Its not surprising that this film achieved so many oscars a few years back. Its wonderful. I welcome this new version however, because it does tighten up some "loose ends" which although may not have been noticeable in the original version, does enlighten the viewer on Constanze' attitude to Salieri at the end of the film. Not historically accurate, films like this seldom are, Mozart is portrayed as a musical genius which indeed he was; and a buffoon, which is highly unlikely. Moreover, the final sequence of Salieri completing Mozert's Requiem did not happen, it was in fact completed by Mozart's pupil Franz Sussmeyer who simply reprised the first movement. Still, its an amazing achievement in the history of the cinema and should be seen by all those who enjoy Mozart's music even though from time to time the music sounds as though "it has too many notes!" The extras are very interesting and reveal some of the problems of filming behind the Iron Curtain which of course still existed during the filming in 1985. Picture quality and sound, especially if you have a Home Cinema setup are first class. This can be bought for a brilliant price too. Dont miss it!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good 21 Mar 2009
I think this is a good transfer, although I agree with 'hellodavey' and 'K Oppegaard' - the film is not quite what it should be in places (although I think this is due to fairly subtle DNR, not the bitrate, which I think is ample for such a film).

I suppose if you don't know the film and expect a visual feast of background detail throughout, you may be disappointed, since the camera sometimes has a shallow field of focus, with only the very foreground completely in focus. However, this is primarily because the focus is on the player who is currently conversing (or narrating), which is quite appropriate for a film derived from a play. Amadeus is, after all, justly praised for it's great interplay and dialogue.

All that aside, I think it's important to emphasize that overall this is a quite a good transfer, and an improvement, and although DNR is always unwelcome, I don't think it's too obvious here.

Of equal importance, the 'third main character' which is the music, is also improved.

As a general point, I would say even a small improvement is worth having for a film you like, but in this case the improvement is noticeable. Give it a rent and see for yourself!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Amadeus [2009] [Director's Cut] [Limited Edition DigiBook Package]...
Amadeus [2009] [Director's Cut] [Limited Edition DigiBook Package] [Blu-ray] [US Import] Amadeus - The Man! The Music! The Magic! The Madness! Read more
Published 3 days ago by Andrew C. Miller
5.0 out of 5 stars This is an amazing film. Funny and captivating at the same time
This is an amazing film. Funny and captivating at the same time. I,m NOT one ever for any type of musical but with the exception of "jesus christ superstar" and this one... Read more
Published 4 days ago by A. M. Mc Neil
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 6 days ago by Susan Riddell
4.0 out of 5 stars a classic approach to the story of Mozart
Not as good as the stage show but all played their parts extremely well. Mozart himself, played very differently from the stage show, managed to gain our sympathy, despite his... Read more
Published 24 days ago by Mrs. D. Greig Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars Delivered on time
Saw this at the cinema long time ago. Haven't had chance to watch it yet, still on my to do list!
Published 1 month ago by Anchises
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
I loved this film, I think the acting is superb, perhaps not completely accurate to Mozarts life, but a wonderfully made film with lots of lovely Mozart music. Genius.
Published 1 month ago by Lezley Bold
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
I absolutely loved this movie! I have not seen the shorter version so cannot compare between the two; but I can say that the director's cut did not feel long at all - the time... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Jenny
In 1781 Vienna, esteemed court composer Antonio Salieri (F MURRAY ABRAHAM) is musical maestro to Emperor Joseph II (JEFFREY JONES) when they hear of the new prodigy Wolfgang... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Napoleon
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent customer service
The first copy I received had a problem with the sound, however amazon/the company selling it were very helpful and swapped it over within 24hrs, no questions asked. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mrs F E STONES
5.0 out of 5 stars Mozart as we all know him
First rate film of the Schaeffer play with a McEnroe type Mozart but one who's naive child like genius shows, often all at the same time. Thank goodness for his wife! Read more
Published 2 months ago by Brian Last
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