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Doctor Zhivago [Blu-ray]  [Region Free]
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David Lean's Doctor Zhivago is an exploration of the Russian Revolution as seen from the point of view of the intellectual, introspective title character (Omar Sharif). Lara inspires lechery in Komarovsky (her mother's lover who is a master at surviving whoever runs Russia) and can't compete with passion for the revolution of the man she marries, Pasha. Her true love is Zhivago who also loves his wife. Lara is the one who inspires poetry. The story is narrated by Zhivago's half brother Yevgraf, who has made his career in the Soviet Army. At the beginning of the film he is about to meet a young woman he believes may be the long lost daughter of Lara and Zhivago.This epic, sweeping romance, told in flashback, captures the lushness of Moscow before the war and the violent social upheaval that followed. The film is based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Boris Pasternak.
Now this is a bit more like it. Some of the older films plucked off the shelves for a high definition upgrade haven’t been the most deserving of candidates. But a sweeping epic such as Dr Zhivago? That’s absolutely ripe for a quality Blu-ray release, and it’s got one right here.
Directed by the late, great David Lean, and starring Omar Sharif in his most famous role, Dr Zhivago is, of course, the story of the title character. Set across five decades, he finds himself married to one woman and in love with another, while the war and revolution around him continues to take its toll. That’s a simplified version of the narrative, granted. But even though it’s now 45 years old, this is a film rich in storytelling, and rightly regarded as one of the all-time greats.
It’s also a sumptuous film to look at, boasting genuinely startling cinematography, and that’s where the pleasure of a 1080p picture transfer comes into its own. It’s perhaps easy to note that Dr Zhivago has never looked better in the home than it does here, but this is nonetheless a very good upgrade. Rich and evocative, the transfer does the film proud, as does the packaging together of such a diverse collection of interesting extra features.
Given the treatment that some back catalogue releases have suffered on the Blu-ray format to date, it’s terrific to report that Dr Zhivago proves to be a worthy upgrade for an excellent piece of cinema. --Jon FosterSee all Product Description
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If you already own this film on DVD, Doctor Zhivago [DVD], and are reading these reviews to ascertain as to whether your money would be well spent upgrading to the Blu-ray edition, look no further and place your wallet back in your pocket.
I recently bought the 45th Anniversary Blu-ray edition Doctor Zhivago [Blu-ray]  [Region Free] as an "upgrade" from my standard definition DVD and genuinely wish I hadn't. Aside from what can only be described as a mediocre HD transfer of varied quality, the major setback of this edition is simply that this movie really isn't suitable for an HD viewing experience. Rather than enhance the viewers enjoyment, the upgrade in clarity unfortunately detracts from the films original beauty, and instead draws the viewers attention away from the story and towards background sets, and it's here that this Blu-ray edition succeeds in destroying the illusion. Suddenly the streets of Moscow become wooden mock ups, the snow begins to look like paper from a snow machine, interior sets look exactly that, like a film set, and the illusion rapidly begins to fade.
I can only compare the experience to eventually learning the method behind the magic trick that baffled you for so long, and suddenly the illusion holds no further interest.Read more ›
Handsome production with brilliant production design by John Box is a triumph of storytelling being beautifully intimate for the most part while set against the epic backdrop of stunning vistas and wonderful set pieces- notably the railway journey through the Urals being the pick of the bunch.Performances are excellent with Steiger dialling down his usual bombastic style to very good effect probably the pick of the bunch and alhough nearly 200 mins in length it never sags and Lean can be forgiven the regular contrivances of the narrative and the heavy use of symbolism to convey messages and mood changes because there is a richness of atmosphere and a sense of history that permeates the whole film.Freddie Young's dazzling work as DP is truly extrodinary.
I can't be the only one to have never watched D Zhivago before and plumped for the blu even though i've had the 2 disc stan def for a couple of yrs now and i wasn't disappointed.Popping in the stan def after,the blu is certainly an improvement on it with the interiors looking wonderful and the sunflower in the hospital is quite beautiful as is Chaplin captured so exquisitely as she alights the train resplendent in her pink military style coat.The dts 5.1 sound is excellent too emphasising Maurice Jarre's now legendary score and the sequence of the charge across the ice is both an auditory and visual highlight.
A very worthwhile investment in a superb film.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
First saw this in 1967. Classic film, still does not disappoint. No CGI, didn't need it. The snow scenes, which is most of the film, ideally watched on a really hot day!Published 11 days ago by Peter_S
This is a film that I came across purely through my love of Lara's Theme, a song that I heard a lot of when I was a small child. Read morePublished 14 days ago by Cazbo
Not watched this video but assuming it is the film originally produced and which I saw many years ago it can only rate as excellent value for money.Published 14 days ago by Amazon Customer