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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 15 March 2011
Based around the actual letters sent by Colonel Robert Gould Shaw to his parents, this Civil War picture tells the story of the Massachusetts 54th Regiment, the first black regiment to fight under the American flag. Led by their white leader (Shaw), they must overcome bigotry, in fighting and the war itself, just to feel like men of honour.

The most striking thing about Glory is that it is never over sentimental, with the subject at hand it would have been easy for the makers to over egg the pudding and rely solely on a racialist stance for impact. What we do get is actually a candidate for one of the most politically correct war films to have ever been made, harsh and at times heart tugging it may be, but the narrative never veers from the core essence of men wanting to be just Director Edward Zwick has many critics in the industry, but here his attention to detail should be roundly applauded, he perfectly captures the period whilst molding a tightly plotted piece of work. Zwick also needs a pat on the back for hiring cinematographer Freddie Francis (Academy Award Winner), who weaves his magic to bring the brutality of the surroundings vividly to life, while James Horner provides a wonderful swirling emotive score (fans of his work on Braveheart should definitely check out this earlier composition). Tho the film is essentially a multi ensemble piece, there are tremendous performances from the principal actors: Matthew Broderick (Shaw), Denzel Washington (Trip) {Academy Award Winner Best Supporting Actor}, Morgan Freeman (John Rawlins) and Andre Braugher (Searles).

We follow this regiment from its initial formation, ill equipped and never taken seriously, it appears that this army is not even worthy of being canon fodder. But thru sheer determination, and led by the empathetically driven Shaw, the 54th Regiment prove themselves to be a worthy force; and this ultimately leads to their place in American history with the culmination of events at South Carolina's Fort Wagner (a stunning emotive finale booming from the screen). Heroic and tragic is the tale of Glory, but its chief point of enlightenment thru historical facts, and its message of heroics having no colour, makes Glory a truly inspiring movie that demands to be seen, and, hopefully........respected. 10/10
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on 25 November 2005
Id just like to say i am only 13 and i watched this film in a history lesson as we are learning about the civil war in America and, it was absolutly amazing. How one man gave his life to Black race touched me in such a way that by the end of the film i was crying. Id reccomend it to any one who really appreciates a true, patriotic film. It really puts things into perspective to you. Thank you x
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on 27 March 2003
GLORY tells the Civil War story of the 54th Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry which was comprised of black soldiers led by a young white officer named Robert Gould Shaw. The movie is dominated by strong performances by Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington and Morgan Freeman as well as superb action scenes.
The tale of Colonel Shaw's exploits has long been familiar to school children in Boston where a statue of the Union Army hero is prominently situated on the Boston Common at the corner of Beacon and Park Streets.
GLORY won Academy Awards in 1989 for Best Supporting Actor (Denzel Washington) and Cinematography. Oscar nominations were also received for Editing, Art Direction and Sound.
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First things first - I don't own a 4K TV - nor do I own the Sony BDPS6200 BLU RAY player with built in 4K upscaling. So I suppose this review of "Glory Mastered In 4K" is compromised on 2 fronts. However I have what I suspect most film lovers have - a good Plasma TV and a half-decent BLU RAY player. But even with machines as lowly as these - I'm compelled to review...

Is Mastered In 4K a gimmick? No it's not. The new format on BLU RAY is in its infancy for sure as far as releases and market interest is concerned - but judging on what I'm seeing on my television - that isn't going to last long. Once you set your eyes on the quality of the picture and what can be done - immediate upgrades on all your favourites is going to make you very excited - and your bank manager very nervous.

"Glory" has had a convoluted and patchy history with regard to reissue - most notorious of all was the DVD - slammed as being awful - with its BLU RAY follow up not a whole lot better. And this powerful 1989 Edward Zwick movie about the 54th Massachusettes regiment in the American Civil War (the first Black military unit and their extraordinary bravery) means a lot to many. So Sony seem to have gone to some lengths to change this with their new format baby because "Glory" is being hailed as a sort of flagship release to show what can be achieved - even with older and sometimes degraded elements.

It's defaulted to 1.85:1 aspect ratio so it naturally fills the full screen and has a huge impact for doing so. The picture isn't perfect by any means or stretch of the imagination - and there are shocking 'grain' spikes at times. The most famous of these is where Colonel Robert Shaw (a huge performance from Matthew Broderick) is in a ballroom talking to a general - when it cuts to the general the picture is gorgeous - but when it cuts back to Broderick's face - it looks awful - twice. And on many other occasions the natural grain of filming is evident like a very faint shimmer - but even in the darker night sequences in tents when Denzel Washington, Andre Braugher and Morgan Freeman are talking - the picture is amazingly clean, rich and rock solid.

But it's when the camera moves to the drill marches, the towns they pass through and especially the battle encampments and the fields of battle - it looks gorgeous to a degree that is breath-taking. Bloody wounds, muddy shirts, the blue uniforms they covet so much, Denzel standing tall and defiant and hurting as he takes the lashes on the wheel for insubordination - it all looks incredibly rich and deep. Throughout the film this kicked in maybe 30 or 40 times which is impressive despite the grain moments in between.

The best way to describe the picture is 'cinematic' - there's an almost 3D depth to some shots - a real 'movie-in-your-home' sense of distances. And the James Horner soundtrack is given full reign too by the 5.1 True HD mix (English and Spanish) as are and sounds of rifle gunfire, canon blasts, rain on tarpaulin and men screaming in pain in tents as surgeons saw off limbs.

Presentation - Subtitles are in English, English for The Hard of hearing, Hindi, Polish and Spanish. Each release comes in a pretty blue card slipcase on the outside with the BLU RAY MASTERED IN 4K logo across the top - but unfortunately little else. There are literally no extras of any kind - which feels like a huge missed opportunity especially on such a rich film as "Glory" (3 Oscar wins - Best Supporting Actor for Denzel, Best Cinematography and Best Sound).

And as you can see from the list below - the initial vanguard of titles in 4K is hardly enticing - and in some cases - why even bother (the truly dreadful "The Other Guys" and the underwhelming "Moneyball")? And these titles were issued (Region Free) in the States between April and July 2013 with no further names since? Hardly a rip-roaring start...

Having said all that - I'm impressed. I'm even tempted now by "Taxi Driver", "Ghostbusters" and "Godzilla" which have received similar glowing reviews on the improvement front. The truth I suspect is that '4K' is an advancement for film fans that we're going to want more of once we clap our beady eyes on the screen - and that can only spell joy and pain in equal measure.

Here we go again...

Titles MASTERED IN 4K as of March 2014 are:

1. Angels And Demons (2009)
2. Battle: Los Angeles (2011)
3. Ghostbusters (1984)
4. Glory (1989)
5. Godzilla (1998)
6. The Karate Kid (2010)
7. Men In Black (1997)
8. Moneyball (2011)
9. The Other Guys (2010)
10. Pineapple Express (2008)
11. Spider-Man (2002)
12. Spider-Man 2 (2004)
13. Spider-Man 3 (2007)
14. The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)
15. Taxi Driver (1976)
16. Total Recall (2012)
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on 18 April 2007
This a truly great war film, firstly in the sense that it focuses on the human experience in war, rather than glorifying war (the title is deliberately ironic in context)and, secondly, has a sincere message to convey. The true story of the first black regiment in the American Civil War is compelling, moving and inspiring in equal measure throughout the entire film. And it's interesting to see Matthew Broderick, in a rare heavyweight role, as the idealistic and caring young officer, who bears an almost overwhelming responsibility and learns as much from his men as they do from him. Broderick conveys the pressure and vulnerability his character suffers, often (and this is the mark of a good actor) without dialogue but with subtle expressive gestures. The interchanges between Morgan Freeman as the wise gravedigger turned soldier and Denzel Washington as the infantryman with a chip on his soldier are very moving. It's a quietly dignified film that tells its story so well and doesn't plod along as do so many war films that recount true events.
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on 30 July 2016
This is a truly remarkable film. The first black regiment in the American civil war. Morgan freeman ,Denzel washing are ax ever excellent. But Matthew Brodericks portrayal of Colonel Robert Gould Shaw is tremendous. Shaw was not a a hung Ho super hero. Thus there is great sensitivity in the film. I'm a retired teacher and this film was shown at my school. The senior students loved it as did I . I watched it many times and been delighted each time
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I cannot believe that this fine film made over twenty years ago has simply passed me by. I have never seen it and did not even know of it's existence until I stumbled across it on Amazon and read all the positive reviews. But lots of positive reviews does not always mean a good film, but it certainly did on this occasion. I do not normally bother to review a film that has already been reviewed by so many, but feel that I should make an exception on this occasion.

The story is about the all black members of the 54th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, who were lead by Col Robert Gould Shaw, the son of a wealthy Boston abolitionist. Shaw wrote over 200 letters to family and friends many of which are kept in the Houghton Library at Harvard. These letters formed the inspiration for books about the 54th and later this film. In a nutshell we witness how these soldiers are denied the courtesies and privaleges allowed their white counterparts, simply due to their colour. All this despite the fact that the war was being fought on their behalf. We then follow the regiment into battle as they distinguish themselves in bitter fighting, culminating in their heroic charge against the heavily fortified Confederate stronghold of Fort Wagner.

Firstly I must say how refreshing it was to see such authentic looking period detail. Many of the soldiers displayed the beards and moustaches so favoured in that period. Matthew Broderick who took the lead role, managed to look uncannily like Shaw. The costumes and battle scenes are entirely convincing, despite lacking the technical wizardry they have at their disposal today. Civil war buffs must surely have been rubbing their hands with glee. This is definitely the most realistic, and also happens to be the best Civil war film I have seen. Broderick excels in the lead role, and is given superb support from his black cast. Denzel Washington stands out as the rebellious Private Trip, and Morgan Freeman is his usual assured self as Sgt Major John Rawlins. The film avoids the obvious pitfall of submerging itself in cloying sentimentality, and simply tells a very worthy story in some style. The characters are developed without the usual bland stereo typing, so that you empathise with them as the film progresses. I defy a viewer of any colour not to be angry at the racism directed against the soldiers. The film closes in a magnificently staged battle sequence to James Horner's stirring musical score.

The real heroes of the story were ignored by history due to ongoing racism. This is something that thankfully in recent years has been rectified, and the debt of gratitude that the American people owe to the 54th has been recognised. This film covers a fascinating story with the due respect and sensitivity that those soldiers deserved. There are no false heroics here. Brave men die because someone has to take the initiatiative and throw themselves toward the waiting guns. This is the nature of war, and the 54th showed themselves to be brave men. The words inspirational and moving have been used by other reviewers and that certainly rang true for me. I see the average stars for this film is 4.5 based on current reviews which is spot on. I will round this up to a generous 5 stars. Well worth watching if you have not caught it already. Deservedly given the blu-ray treatment.
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on 11 January 2014
A quick word of warning.

I bought this 2009 Blu-Ray edition to upgrade from my DVD copy and discovered on watching that I've completely wasted my money. I'm not sure how this will compare to the newer 2012 Blu-Ray release however this 2009 version is nothing more than a direct transfer from a DVD source and cannot by any stretch of the imagination be referred to as having a high definition picture quality.

I'd actually go so far as to say that the DVD is of better quality, as the Blu-Ray enhances picture grain in most scenes having not been digitally re-mastered prior to the transfer. The movie itself is a fantastic film if you enjoy this time period, fantastic direction by the brilliant Edward Zwick, excellent performances from all the actors involved not to mention outstanding sets and period detail.

As stated, I'm not sure if the 2012 release has been re-mastered, however this 2009 version is one to avoid. If in doubt, save your money and buy the DVD.
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on 28 September 2016
Arrived in 4 days, well packed, as advertised, new. Would use this supplier again with confidence.
Great film, Denzel Washington and Morgan Freeman so good in their parts.
Have seen this film a couple of times on tv, which is why I bought it, one of those films that can be watched again and again.
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on 21 February 2015
For someone who has a real interest in the American Civil War this was painful. Broderick's performance was woeful for me. Watched once and won't watch again, unlike Ken Burns 'The Civil War' which I've watched several times and Killer Angels (Audiobook) which is just excellent.
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