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4.1 out of 5 stars
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4.1 out of 5 stars
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on 20 July 2011
Absolutely nothing wrong with the film itself (apart from a few historical inaccuracies) what I was puzzled by and wasn't happy with is that the DVD stops 17 minutes before the end of the film and you have to turn the disc over for the remainder of the film!!! It also doesn't inform you that you need to turn the disc over, I thought that something was wrong with the disc for a short time until I turned it over. Totally ruined the moment. In these days of fairly advanced technology you would think that it would be possible to get a film that lasts 133 mins all on the one side of a disc!! It wasn't even as if the room was taken up by copious amounts of DVD extras!
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on 20 April 2006
I saw this film for the 2nd time last week and enjoyed it just as much as the first time .I cannot understand the criticism of Julia Roberts as her role in the film is not that important and I didnt find her accent offensive.Another review critisizes Rickman and this is totally without foundation as i have heard numerous recordings of Devs radio broadcasts and i find Alans portayal and voice eerie in its accuracy,not too mention his appearnce.Jordan appears to have choosen what the viewers should think in his linkage with Devs involvement in Collins death when there is no solid proof that Dev was involved,equally Devs personality appears less than honorable throughout with all the heroics heavily balanced in Collins favour.If their was a need to show the cruelty of the British secret service the inaccuracy of an actual persons death(Broy, who died 50 years later) was silly cosidering the historical accuracy throughout is admirable.Similarly the civil war started because of the oath of allegiance not partitiona.Another review correctly mentions that the 1916 rebels were pelted with stones and rotten fruit by the Dublin poulace for being responsible for the deaths and ruination of the city and only as a result of General Maxwell's decision to to shoot the leaders did the support swing copletely in favour of the rebels.Lastly Liam Neeson's " BIG FELLA" performance was great and made it an overall a great watch!!!
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I won't debate "Michael Collins" as a movie (it still stands up after 20 years having just re-watched it) - but I will rave about the 2K restoration on this new March 2016 Warner Brothers "20th Anniversary" BLU RAY reissue.

First up the picture is clearly frame-by-frame restored and looks fabulous. There are even scenes indoors with Stephen Rea in Dublin Castle amidst his intelligence papers and the crowd sequences with Alan Rickman (brilliant as the political eel that was Eamon De Valera, Ireland's first President) where the word 'beautiful' leaps to mind. Much of the movie is filmed at night and in foggy streets - so the restoration was always going to be a challenge to keep that fuzz and grain at bay while at the same time retain the natural colours of the film intact. And this transfer has achieved that. When you watch the 9 or 10 short deleted scenes (mostly containing Liam Neeson and Aidan Quinn as Michael Collins and Harry Boland larking about) - you see the untreated film stock with its scratches and lines and realise what a great job has been done on the main event.

The extras include:
A feature-length Commentary by Director NEIL JORDAN
In Conversation with Neil Jordan (new)
The South Bank Show Special from 1996
Theatrical Trailer
Deleted Scenes (about 10)

The new "In Conversation With Neil Jordan" has him reminiscing (in Warner Brothers seating) about the making of the film and 20 years of hindsight (Ireland was only just emerging out of the Troubles with both the IRA and The UVF having cease-fired when it was being made) - but it's criminally short and not particularly informative. A hundred times better is the near 50 minutes of "The South Bank Show" filmed in 1996 just after the launch of the movie. It features properly in-depth interviews with Director and Writer Neil Jordan, Tim Pat Coogan the Irish Author of Collins' life, Unionist peacemaker David Ervine and England's film and book critic Tom Paulin. It also has Producer Stephen Wooley fondly discussing the use of Dublin as a set (the whole city – unprecedented access) - the 5000 extras who turned up in period costumes for the shoot - short interviews with Neeson and glimpses of on-set shooting (Julia Roberts, Stephen Rea, Ian Hart and Brendan Gleeson). It goes into Collins' early 20's life as a worker in England for the Post Office, his grounding in Accounting so that he managed the finances of the revolution and in particular the paradox of the man - part gentleman - part ruthless killer - and probably the inventor of modern-day guerrilla warfare. It talks also of his eventual assassination by his own army in Cork at the age of 31 and how Jordan re-wrote the Croak Park black and tan murders and that controversial 'was De Valera involved in the assassination, possibly ordered it' scene (which Jordan argues was never his intention).

The BLU RAY of "Michael Collins" of course also avoids that crappy 'flipper' of a DVD we've had to live with all these years where you had to turn the damn thing over to view the remainder of the movie. And in 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio – the BLU RAY fills the entire screen with a lush picture that thrills all the way to the end ("Michael Collins” looks way better than its $28 million-dollar budget). The 5.1 Audio rattles those explosions and gunfire shots around your room with renewed force and you also get to appreciate the stunning commitment of the actors involved (Liam Neeson and Aidan Quinn have been lifetime friends ever since).

Part of their respected and applauded 'Warner Archive Collection' series of BR reissues - "Michael Collins" is a triumph on BLU RAY. If you love this movie - you need to own it on this format. And that truly beautiful version of "She Moves Through The Fair" by Sinead O'Connor as the credits roll still moves me to tears...

AUDIO:
English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
German Dolby Digital 2.0
Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0
Japanese Dolby Digital 5.1

SUBTITLES:
English (for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing), French, German (for the Hard-Of-Hearing), Spanish Castellan, Japanese, Spanish Latin, Czech, Polish, Turkish, Mandarin
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on 17 May 2012
Engrossing movie directed by Dubliner Neil Jordan about hero/ Villain, Michael Collins, the man who sought independence for Eire.

The movie begins with the guerrilla war tactics (invented by Collins), which led to the Irish Free State of 26 counties. Collins (Liam Neeson) eventually signed Anglo-Irish Treaty in 1921 which on the one hand guaranteed a Free Irish State but on the other hand still kept Ireland, Southern Ireland, in a state of dominion of the British Empire.

The movie also captures the tensions ensuing after the signing of the treaty, with people who had sided for the republic breaking up into anti-treaty and pro-treaty sides. This movie is long at almost three hours but it captures the life of Collins perfectly.

Most of the action in the movie involves Collins and his freedom fighters attacking (with Guerilla tactics) their British enemies - soldiers, local police, and British intelligence officers. These attacks proved extremely effective.

The film then turns to politics, where Collins is outdone by treachery via the Anti Treaty Irishmen. This, in many ways, is the most interesting part of the film, where the once-united IRA breaks into the Pro Treaty side and Anti Treaty side.

Brilliant movie directed by Neil Jordan and starring Liam Neeson, Julia Roberts, Aidan Quinn, and Alan Rickman (a suitably venomous DeValera)

The soundtrack by Elliot Goldenthal (Heat, Public Enemies) is first rate, and the cinematography by award winning Chris Menges (The Mission, killing Fields) is outstanding.

9/10
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on 23 March 2016
I was planning to get this but after reading a review that you still have to turn disc over, like the originol dvd version but shortened to 17mins from the end, even though its a blu ray disc and how the full film cant be on one side of the disc. I have decided not too purchase unless my originol breaks. So l only recommend if your originol breaks or you dont have the film but be prepared to change disc over near the end of the film.
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on 27 March 2016
As a long-time owner of the old two sided DVD, and an admirer of the film, I was delighted to see it was to get a Blu-Ray release. And they've done a pretty good job of it - IMO anything with Chris Menges name on the cinematography deserves the best quality picture the studio can come up with. The sound is good too - I played it at some considerable volume, and there was crystal clarity in all the scenes, both of dialogue and in the more explosive moments.

Revisiting this film after many years, I found my original feelings confirmed - that it's a five star film slightly marred by what I think is an over-emphasis on the Julia Roberts strand of the film. That's no particular reflection on Julia Roberts, although her accent does on occasions stray over the Atlantic, but I just felt that in a story about an important period in history, focusing on the love story introduced a element of triviality that wasn't necessary. The rest of the film is first class - I'm not expert enough on the historical detail (though it does encourage me to find out more) to comment on that aspect, but the direction, tension and acting are top notch. It's a fine film, with the reservations above.

Going off topic for a moment, and back to Chris Menges, dare I hope that one day some enlightened soul will give us a Blu-Ray release of Local Hero?
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on 4 April 2012
I have just ordered a further copy of this engrossing epic, having owned and given
away an earlier copy. It is too good not to have in any film collection - and even
better if you have any interest in the subject matter.
Although a bit free with some facts (understandable within the restrictions of
producing an entertainment), it is noneless a fine and utterly involving take on a
tumultuous dangerous time in the history of these islands. The cast is excellent,
and I don't accept the frequent criticism of Julia Roberts as Kitty Kiernan. That
woman WAS beautiful and the book containing the letters that passed between her
and Collins gives mournful weight to the love that existed between them. Roberts
possesses the quiet yet firm beauty and character necessary for the role.
The evocation of time and place is wonderfully well done and although the demonisation of the G-men (scowling, brutal & violent - to offset the actions of
Collins and his freedom forces, no doubt) was a bit wearing, it certainly aided
the need to portray the unforgiving nature of two determined mindsets with little
common ground for making peace.
I confess to a personal interest in the material on show here. Look closely at the
piece of paper that "Ned Broy" is burning in the Vaughn Hotel fireplace and you'll
just see "92 Lower Baggot Street..." before it is devoured by flames. It was the
address in which my father's first cousin - a courts martial officer - was shot dead in front of his wife by a team of Collins' gunmen led by Joe Leonard.
I only recently discovered this piece of family history and it certainly brings
this top notch film to vivid albeit disturbing life for this particular viewer -
tho' the 14 victims of that original Bloody Sunday were reduced to a handful in
the movie.
Interestingly, the address still survives as a popular small hotel.
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on 2 April 2016
Having not known much of the turmoil experienced of the 1916 revolution in Ireland this was to me an excellent film portraying one of the leading members. Hard to believe what they all had to endure in Ireland and this film provided a great story with an excellent produced film portraying a taste of the times, personalities and ups and downs of the revolution. Liam Neeson was outstanding and the action was chilling and real. Not a documentary but a great story that I enjoyed.
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on 7 September 2004
Ignore the views that say this film is "inaccurate" or "biased" or "incomplete" - this is always said of historical movies.
Neil Jordan and his cast succeed admirably in conveying the smells, passions and dilemmas of a turbulent time, and in showing the vastness of Collins' achievements. Collins' commitment to Irish freedom was enfused with a deep realism rather than a sentimentalism, and his ruthlessness and bravery in war were matched only by a deep humanity, an almost boyish vulnerability and commitment to making peace.
The loss of Collins was a major one for Ireland and the Irish, and yet his spirit and principles cast a longer shadow than those that opposed him and those who killed him.
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on 8 April 2016
Mixed emotions for film of the life of a titular character that remains controversial and divisive to this day.Neil Jordan,absent from the silver screem of late handles this difficult task well enough but the film is dominated by a thunderous and thoroughly imposing Liam Neeson.
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