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Customer Review

17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Revolution Revisited, 22 Jun 2012
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This review is from: Revolution: The Director's Cut (DVD & Blu-ray) [1985] (DVD)
This is a review of the Director's Cut version of Revolution.

Having watched the original theatrical version of this film many years ago and being rather underwhelmed, out of curiosity I recently viewed the 2009 'revisited' version and I can honestly say that I was really impressed with how small but critical changes to a film can make such a vast improvement to a viewing experience.

There have been several minor edits thoughout this film to give it more pace and the Warner Bros-enforced tacked-on happy ending has been justly excised. However, the most beneficial change is the addition of a new narration by Pacino. This isn't your usual type of narration which explains absolutely everything, leaves nothing to the imagination and totally disengages the audience. Rather, Pacino's unique voiceover of his character's thoughts is both clever and subtle and provides a means of pointing the viewer in the right direction, leaving them to discover for themselves reasons and motivations, thus making the film much more absorbing and effectively revealing the story within for the first time.

Revolution has been unjustly maligned over the years for various reasons. Pacino's accent has been roundly castigated for being absurd but in actual fact was extremely well researched and language experts have confirmed it as being totally authentic for the time. A lot of criticism has come from American critics who must have objected to British filmmakers telling an 'American' history. As Hugh Hudson points out, however, this is a British story; America was a British colony at the time and this film was not meant to be a grand epic documenting the history of American independance but instead was meant to present the personal story of a father and son caught up in a war, a war of which they have no understanding.

My advice is to try and ignore everything that has been written about this film before and discover it for yourself for the first time. You may still thinks its flawed but at least you can make up your own mind and don't allow anyone to tell you what to think. You might be surprised.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 22 Jun 2012 17:21:56 BDT
Mark Pearce says:
Hello Gj
Nice review and having read the piece in S&S, I am tempted (and I remember it as turgid)but what about the print.Assuming you have watched it and your review is not a puff piece,what is the picture quality like on blu.
Regards

In reply to an earlier post on 22 Jun 2012 18:25:41 BDT
GJ says:
Alas, I do not own a Blu-ray player just yet so I have only watched the DVD version so far. On DVD the picture looks great but I'm no expert as I haven't experienced the joys of Blu-ray yet (I know, I'm well behind the times. I'll upgrade eventually!)

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Jun 2012 11:01:31 BDT
Last edited by the author on 27 Jun 2012 14:20:47 BDT
Krokfors says:
I've seen the theatrical cut as a 1.85:1 standard definition transfer. It was a lot brighter than the theatrical or director's cut on this version (BFI). However, now we get it in the original 2.35:1. So, in high definition you get a dark image with good detail when the blacks aren't crushed. Plus a healthy dose of grain.

And the downside: notorius BFI has published another defective disc, or in fact two (set up menus do not work). The blu-ray has NO "optional subs in English", that could be accessed through the disc menu or your remote, so even a native speaker may not understand much of Pacino's odd dialect or of the guttural barkings of Sutherland. And how about this: on the DVD the subs aren't "optional", either, but forced!

I'm sending this back and keeping the US region free DVD "Revolution: Reconsidered" by Warner.

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Jan 2014 12:06:59 GMT
blueskies says:
Thank you for the alternative item advice. Tried to find 'revolution: reconsidered' on amazon.com: nothing doing not even 'product unavailable'. BFI again, what is their problem?
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