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Gladiator [Remastered] [Blu-ray]  [Region Free]
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Gladiator picked up five Academy Awards® and tells the story of Maximus Decimus (played by Russell Crowe), a Roman general who is betrayed by the corrupt prince Commodus. Captured and enslaved along the outer fringes of the Roman Empire, Maximus rises through the ranks of the gladiatorial arena to avenge the murders of his family and his emperor.
This format defining release is presented on two BD 50 dual-layer discs and includes 11 hours of extra content. The first disc will include both the theatrical and extended version of the film, audio commentary, deleted scenes and the Vision of Elysium: Topic Portal, a new U-Control feature that allows viewers to tag moments of interest throughout the film and create a "shopping list" of topics to learn about in the supplements on disc two. The second disc also includes Strength and Honour: Creating the World of Gladiator, the definitive documentary on the origin, product and impact of the film.
A big-budget summer epic with money to burn and a scale worthy of its golden Hollywood predecessors, Ridley Scott's Gladiator is a rousing, grisly, action-packed epic that takes moviemaking back to the Roman Empire via computer-generated visual effects. While not as fluid as the computer work done for, say, Titanic, it's an impressive achievement that will leave you marveling at the glory that was Rome, when you're not marveling at the glory that is Russell Crowe. Starring as the heroic general Maximus, Crowe firmly cements his star status both in terms of screen presence and acting chops, carrying the film on his decidedly non-computer-generated shoulders as he goes from brave general to wounded fugitive to stoic slave to gladiator hero. Gladiator's plot is a whirlwind of faux-Shakespearean machinations of death, betrayal, power plays, and secret identities (with lots of faux-Shakespearean dialogue ladled on to keep the proceedings appropriately "classical"), but it's all briskly shot, edited, and paced with a contemporary sensibility. Even the action scenes, somewhat muted but graphic in terms of implied violence and liberal bloodletting, are shot with a veracity that brings to mind--believe it or not--Saving Private Ryan, even if everyone is wearing a toga. As Crowe's nemesis, the evil emperor Commodus, Joaquin Phoenix chews scenery with authority, whether he's damning Maximus's popularity with the Roman mobs or lusting after his sister Lucilla (beautiful but distant Connie Nielsen); Oliver Reed, in his last role, hits the perfect notes of camp and gravitas as the slave owner who rescues Maximus from death and turns him into a coliseum star. Director Scott's visual flair is abundantly in evidence, with breathtaking shots and beautiful (albeit digital) landscapes, but it's Crowe's star power that will keep you in thrall--he's a true gladiator, worthy of his legendary status. Hail the conquering hero! --Mark Englehart --This text refers to the DVD edition.See all Product Description
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Now what you really want to know: how can you be sure you're getting the new edition, and not the shoddy first release? As of 9 September, NBC Universal UK have confirmed three things:
1. They have started shipping the new edition to retailers, but it's up to retailers as to when they sell it.
2. The new edition has a "Pocket-Blu" logo on the back, comprising the pocket BLU symbol and the words "pocket BLU"; this is the sole distinguishing mark. If it's there, you have the new edition; if not, the old.
3. The combined Robin Hood/Gladiator release includes the new edition of Gladiator.
Ratio of the feature film:
Length of the Theatrical Cut: 155 min
Length of the Extended Cut: 171 min
Languages of the feature film:
DTS Master Audio 5.1: English
DTS 5.1: French, Italian, German, Castilian Spanish, Latin Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese
Dolby 2.0: 2 commentaries by the director Ridley Scott and some crew's members (1 commentary for each cut)
Subtitles for the feature film and the bonuses (Disc II):
French, Italian, German, Castilian Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, Latin Spanish, Dutch, Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, Portuguese, Swedish, Traditional Mandarin and English for the hard of hearings.
Extra subtitles only available on Disc II:
Japanese, Russian, Greek and Polish
This film on Blu Ray is nearly perfect, a good picture with an outstanding soundtrack. The soundtrack is perfect with a fantastic music. The picture has a natural but discrete noise.
Thanks to its excellent picture, we can see much more details about the battle, the fights, Rome and its magnificent buildings, monuments and of course the coliseum which looks very massive, imposing in this ancient and highly detailed city.
High Definition picture means details we are not supposed to see !!
- We can clearly during the first battle against the Prussians, 1 guy seen not fighting but smiling and walking in the wrong direction !! (9 min 44 sec), a funny take !!
- The stunt double of Russel Crowe falling from his horse during this same battle (10 min, 25 sec).
- The following day, Maximus goes to see his horse, a crew man wearing jeans standing in the background behind the horse can be seen hiding.Read more ›
In the opening battle scenes in Germania for example, about half of the flaming arrows fired by the Romans have been erased on the blu ray compared to the DVD. What's worse is that the ones that remain flicker in and out of existence in a really obvious manner. Likewise Roman soldiers have their spears erased or cut in half (I'm not joking - look up AVS Forums and you'll see screenshots of what I mean). But worst of all is that the studio seems to have actually added in some print damage that wasn't present on the DVD! In some scenes (only for a split second mind you) a strange blueish blob (admittedly very small) can flash up - what's up with that?
The real kick in the teeth though is that all these problems only affect the theatrical portions of the film - all of the extended scenes have been left unmolested, and here the picture quality is fantastic. But it is very jarring when watching these scenes as you'll go from blurry to very sharp and then back again - again this is obvious to the "untrained eye" so to speak.
Ultimately it is an absolute travesty that this film has been released in such a state.Read more ›
Just as Sony did with The Fifth Element, Universal need to do a new high-definition transfer and issue a recall notice as a matter of urgency...and for those unlucky folks who've already coughed-up their hard earned, an exchange programme needs to be implemented at Universal's expense.
As an aside, the Braveheart transfer is nothing short of stunning.
Edit: Amazon.De have now have the re-mastered "10th Anniversary Edition" up for pre-order with a release date of May 6th. This will have a brand new 1080p transfer due to the "inferior quality" of the first release. No doubt the apologists will continue to bury their heads in the sand and insist the first release looks "stunning", but for those of us without eyesight problems & correctly calibrated displays, this comes as very welcome news.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Just a great film - Ridley Scott at his masterful, powerful, and stunningly visual best. Russell Crowe in a brilliant and not over-played role - very few actors convey such... Read morePublished 29 days ago by David James
The quality of this was rubbish I'm sure it was fake so dark you couldn't see anything in parts and I've seen gladiator many times and it's never looked like thatPublished 1 month ago by Mrs. D. Van Heeswyk
Its alright but personally i was very disappointed, the plot is simple, the action is extremely average and has no intesity to it and i never really cared about the charactors,... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Rowan Exton