Tom Cruise stars in this visually stunning fantasy adventure in which pure good and evil battle to the death amidst spectacular surroundings. Set in a timeless mythical forest inhabited by fairies, goblins, unicorns and mortals, the fantastic story has Jack, (Tom Cruise), a mystical forest dweller, chosen by fate to undertake a heroic quest. He must save a beautiful Princess Lily, (Mia Sara), and defeat the demonic Lord of Darkness, (Tim Curry), or the world will be plunged into a never-ending ice age. Co-starring Billy Barty and Alice Playten and directed by Ridley Scott, famed for his remarkable settings and unparalleled imagery, the incredibly realised fable is the stuff movie legends are made of.
The Blu-ray of Legend
gets off to a very, very good start. Right from the off, you’re offered a choice of one of two different cuts of the movie. There’s the theatrical version, which many grew up with. But also, there’s Ridley Scott’s longer, richer director’s cut. Both, thankfully, are included on the disc. It’s the key extra feature that’s been included on the Blu-ray, and an important one.
Elsewhere? Well, ordinarily, the first part of a high definition upgrade that would stand out would be the picture quality of a film. In the case of Legend though, it’s the glorious score that plays over the menus. It sounds crisp and really quite wonderful, and remains so right through the feature itself.
Thankfully, the picture upgrade, too, is worth the investment. Considering how dark large parts of Legend are, it’s a challenging film to successfully transfer to disc. But it’s fine work that’s been done here. It really gets across just how young a certain Tom Cruise used to look, too, with the crispness of the 1080p transfer.
As with many fantasy films of the 1980s, the emphasis on practical effects is striking, and welcome. They hold up a lot better than you might be expecting in more exposed high definition. But then, so does the film itself. It’s a magical piece of work, in a genre that neither Tom Cruise nor Ridley Scott has spent much time in across their careers. And fortunately, the Blu-ray proves to be a worthwhile upgrade. --Jon Foster