- Actors: Vanessa Redgrave, Oliver Reed, Dudley Sutton, Max Adrian, Gemma Jones
- Directors: Ken Russell
- Format: PAL, Colour
- Language: English
- Studio: Warner
- VHS Release Date: 22 April 2002
- Run Time: 104 minutes
- Average Customer Review: 159 customer reviews
- ASIN: B00004CIPH
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 67,382 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Ken Russell helms this graphic 1971 adaptation of a documented witchcraft case, which took place in France in 1634. Outspoken priest Urbain Grandier (Oliver Reed) finds himself accused of seducing a group of hysterical nuns while in demon form by Mother Superior Sister Jeanne (Vanessa Redgrave), who is obsessed with Grandier and driven into a fit of envy when he marries another woman. With the involvement of charismatic exorcist Father Barre (Michael Gothard), the affair turns into a sordid mass exorcism of the tainted convent. With much controversy surrounding its subject matter of religion combined with violence and sex, many cuts were made to the film in order for it to attain certification.
Top customer reviews
This is the restored X-rated U.K. version. Although some finicky film fanatics may balk that a few minutes of "explicit" footage remains missing from the completed film, this 'Region 2' BFI (British Film Institute ?) 2-disc edition is the best quality package treatment you're likely to see of THE DEVILS anytime soon. As an American I grew up seeing (as most people have) the widely available R rated U.S. versions, which alone were enough to make me a lifelong fan of this film. In seeing this version, the original U.K. 'X' certificate version (states 107 mins on the package), I'm sure I saw a bit more than I have seen before in other U.S. vhs and dvd editions (esp. of the "Nuns gone wild" scenes). The acting by Vanessa Redgrave (Oscar level) and Oliver Reed (heck, the whole cast!) is top rate!
Disc 2 contains a great documentary 'Hell on Earth' (2002, 48 mins) which gives us some actual clips, substantial glimpses, I'd say, of the suppressed footage (i.e. "Rape of Christ" and "Charred Bone", plus some others, like of the vulgar mummer's play being acted as Grandier burns). It would be really marvelous if all these scenes were one day restored into the body of the film itself as it really all is leading up to and adding to the story, it is NOT simply vulgarity for vulgarity's sake. Ken Russell was one of those rare masters of film and THE DEVILS is arguably his crowning achievement. Also, this depicts the world these 15th century people lived in.
Interviews with actors and crew and the director. The bonus material is substantial: 40 page color booklet is nice and completely dissects just what was censored and why, a brief intro before the film by Mark Kermode, a tireless advocate for this film, is good for the uninitiated, audio commentary w/ Ken Russell, Mark Kermode, Michael Bradsell & Paul Joyce is available but I've yet to view with it, also includes some 26 min early film by Russell called 'Amelia and the Angel' - "a delightful mix of religious allegory and magical fantasy". I've yet to view it.
All in all, THIS IS THE VERSION TO GET! I think it will not play on U.S. dvd players but I live in Japan so it plays fine on region 2. If you live in the U.S. and *NEED* this film you can probably find a region-free dvd player somewhere on Amazon or Amazon U.K. enabling you to view it (*?*).
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews