3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
History Buff? Then Worth the Watch,
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This review is from: Revolution: The Director's Cut (DVD & Blu-ray)  (DVD)
After seeing the director's cut over 20 years since the original, it is definitely worth it for those who are history buffs and love the 18th Century/American Revolution. True some of the parts are a bit hard to swallow (like the fox hunt) and big chunks of character development seem to be noticeably missing (like no action battle scenes really of Pacino's Anti-hero morphing into a loyal scout in action to redeem his running away from the first lost battles and deserting). However, like, Hugh Hudson, the director says it is not American history but British history and quite emphatically . . anti-war (probably a bit anti-American or at least ever so subtly anti-Founding Fathers).
That being said, in terms of recreating the chaos of a NY Street in 1776 or the arrogance of British aristocrat officers amongst the "colonialists" or recreating the chaos of a rag-tag rebel army at their first defeats in desperate retreat - the movie is ingenius and I would love anyone to come up with a better example of realism. Of course no one alive today was there back then, so we can only discern and inevitably speculate what it must have been like. Yes I have studied the American Revolution, read literature from the time and can consider myself an amateur historian - I think this film comes closer than any to getting the "smell" or in the streets and battle field for some of the experience the American Revolution must have been to the participants. The battles scenes in Barry Lyndon by Kubrik come to my mind. The alternatives are "The Patriot" or a sanitized made for TV movie, which as anyone interested in anything of artistic merit knows is made for the masses cheap entertainment.
This film is anything but cheap. Expensive to produce, the attention to historic details impressive, and the vision of Hudson as director and Robert Dillon's script of the man in the street was very expensive in terms of not just cash, but blood sweat and tears. Pacino's accent seemed perfect for the purpose and Kinski is a very believable and adorable revolutionary lady - Sutherland of course is par excellence too.
Not perfect, yes one can find things to criticize, but step into into it and let go. A film well worth the viewing for the devoted historian and lover of 18th century America!
One thing to do is both versions of the fim are on the DVD so you can watch both versions and compare, I like both.