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The Conformist (Dual Format Edition) [DVD + Blu-ray] [1970]

4.5 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Jean-Louis Trintignant, Stefania Sandrelli, Dominique Sanda, Pierre Clémenti, Gastone Moschin
  • Directors: Bernardo Bertolucci
  • Writers: Bernardo Bertolucci
  • Format: Colour
  • Language: Italian
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Arrow Video
  • DVD Release Date: 27 Feb. 2012
  • Run Time: 113 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B005PLP5X6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 80,566 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

At the peak of his creative powers the 29 year old Bernardo Bertolucci, eschewed the influence of mentor, Jean-Luc Godard and partnered up with Vittorio Storaro and developed his own style for one of the most visually dazzling, politically and psychologically intriguing and possibly greatest of all Italian films.

Told in a non linear structure that would go on to influence The Godfather Part II (not the only influence on Coppola s film), the story begins in Rome, 1938. Marcello (Jean-Louis Trintignant) is a young fascist who takes on the job of assassinating his former professor who has fled to Paris. With his girlfriend (Stefania Sandrelli) in tow he meets the professor and his young wife (Dominique Sanda). A thriller as well as study of Italian politics and psychological character, Bertolucci s Oscar nominated adaptation of Alberto Moravia s novel (an adaptation Moravia greatly admired) has gone on to influence filmmakers such as Paul Schrader, Martin Scorsese and Michael Mann and remains one of the great triumphs of world cinema.

Arrow Academy is proud to present Bernardo Bertolucci s masterpiece on DVD and Blu-ray for the first time in the UK.


The Guardian

Best label 2011


"It's often the smaller-funded labels that do the best work. Arrow has released marvellous discs of many of cinema's classics, such as Bicycle Thieves, Rififi and Les Diaboliques, but it's for their horror releases that they truly excel. The more respectable directors like George A Romero and Dario Argento get their due here, but Arrow also pull out all the stops for such (unfairly) lesser regarded Gore-teurs as Lucio Fulci and Frank Henenlotter. Blu-rays of Fulci classics The Beyond and City Of The Living Dead show that the films are far more atmospheric and better made than they ever appeared before, and for Henenlotter (with the imminent Frankenhooker disc) you get extensive extras that cover the rarely examined scene of low-budget New York film-makers and the lost grindhouses of Times Square and 42nd Street."

--The Guardian

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
So desperate is Marcello (Jean-Louis Trintignant who also starred as a hit-man in "The Outside Man") to lead a normal life after he suffers through the psychological trauma of a sexual confrontation with the family chauffeur (played by the bizarre Pierre Clementi) when he was a child. As an adult he eventually succumbs to the political upheavals of Hitler's Nazi machine during the 1930's and conforms to Prime Minister Mussolini's fascist regime of Italy. Working as an agent for the government he's assigned a mission to assassinate a college professor in Paris France whom Mussolini believes to be a threat to the fascist party. The murder is to take place while he's honeymooning with his newly wedded wife played to perfection by the lovely and charming Stefania Sandrelli (who starred in the contoversial film "Desideria" and Bertolucci's "Partner"), who also manages to steal every scene she's in.

While ploting the assassination in Paris he encounters a problem by falling in love with the professor's wife (Dominque Sanda, who also starred in Bertolucci's "1900"). Matters are further complicated not only by his attraction to the professor's wife, but his marriage as well as his (manufactured) loyalty to the fascist regime. The eventual ending indicates what the title is and what he's always been throughout his life. Lavishly shot by the brilliant Vittorio Storaro (Apocalypse Now & Last Tango In Paris), this is considered Bernardo (The Spider's Stratagem & The Last Emporer) Bertolucci's "breakthrough" film and perhaps his greatest acheivement in cinema as he was also nominated for an Oscar for his screenplay. This mesmerizing look at the social values of World War II Italy is not to be missed and remains one of the all-time great films of the 70's.

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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Bertolucci's 'The Conformist' is a masterpiece. It occupies my top 2 movies (alongside 'Andrei Rublev' by Tarkovsky), and I'm sure will remain there forever. It's hard to explain in words what makes this film so great; the cinematography is unbelievable, the way the film simultaneously thrills you, and gets across so many ideas in it's modest running time. The characters, from Trintignant's seductive, yet hateful lead, to the two gorgeous leading ladies, down to 'Milano Calibro 9's Gastone Moschin as the lizard-like assassin, even Pierre Clementi as the child molesting Chauffeur, makes more of an impact in one scene, than most of today's lead actors do in their entire careers. It's a real shame that paramount can't bring themselves to release this film in the UK on DVD, because this film should be shown to everybody on earth, repeatedly...
Another fascinating thing (not mentioned in other reviews here), is the presence of many actors and crew who can be found on many Italian exploitation efforts of the early 70s, most notably Aldo Lado, who is the first AD on this, but also is one of the best directors of the Giallo genre ('Short Night Of The Glass Dolls', 'Who Saw her Die?' etc etc), a front runner with Argento and Martino.
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Format: DVD
Marcello (Jean-Louis Trintignant) wants to be "normal," lead a normal life with a petite bourgeoisie wife: "She's all bed and kitchen" (Stephania Sandrelli) and all the accoutrements that that life brings with it: home, children, and a good job. But this is 1938 Italy and the ultimate in normalcy is being a fascist and so Marcello gets a job in a Fascist investigation bureau. His job is to find and assassinate any and all anti-fascists. At the age of 34, Marcello can see the light at the end of the tunnel that will take his life to what he considers normal: a mantra that he repeats over and over throughout director Bernardo Bertolucci's very fine film.

Marcello has spent his life in hiding from both his past as well as his present. He is wound up tightly, quiet, solemn, serious and seemingly not aware of the life that swirls around him. But whereas some people consciously hide yet are always aware of what surrounds them, Marcello walks around with blinkers on: blinkers that obfuscate almost every thing except his fantasy yellow brick road to Normal. What's particularly tragic about Marcello is that he doesn't understand that the concept of normalcy is a slippery slope, veritably indefinable and wholly unreachable.

There are only a handful of movies which feature a scene so unusual, so beautiful or perverse that it lingers in the mind of anyone who witnesses it. "The Conformist" contains such a scene: the iconic tango, dripping with over-the-top, blatant homosexual heat as performed by Stephania Sandrelli and Dominique Sanda in a Paris nightclub while the other dancers clear the floor, drop their jaws and marvel at the sensuality of it all. More importantly, Marcello stares at his wife, eyes filled with jealousy.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
It is incredible that this film is so little known and has not been available to purchase for years. I first saw it on tv at university in the eighties when a friend advised that it was a must see film.

It uses a fractured narrative, so it may take a couple of viewings to fully appreciate, but it should be clear enough from a single viewing that it is a masterpiece. In pre-war Italy the protaginist seeks the favour of the growing fascist party and agrees to assasinate a former lecturer who has fled to Paris. But the significance of the story spreads out beyond this to encompass the seductive power of fascism. The film is one of the most beautiful films ever made, you could line you walls with the images. However it also embraces the brutality of its story, making the consquences of actions clear. The exuberance of the music and images is finally replaced by one of the bitterest twists in cinema.

The film is provided in dvd and blu-ray format, with a short leaflet of relevant material. The slip case allows you to choose which original poster to show, and the rather tricksy interactive menu includes an audio commentary.

This film made a huge impact on me in the eighties, and watching it again it resonates days after. It was also the precursor to countless films, such as Once Upon a Time in America and the Godfather 2, where a sweeping score and a fractured timeline address major themes through an individual.

Although rated at 15, it definitely includes adult themes.
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