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Amadeus
BLU-RAY disk
02.27.2009 By: Sturdy
Amadeus order
Director:
Milos Forman

Actors:
F. Murray Abraham
Tom Hulce
Jeffrey Jones

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
AMADEUS is the story of one of the greatest musicians to ever live and the man that was so caught up in jealousy of him that he helped bring his early demise.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
AMADEUS is an impressive film from start to finish. Everything is polished and grand and for three hours, you feel like youíve been transported to the late 1700ís Vienna. Itís not a perfect film, but itís a fantastic look at one of the most important musical influences in history.

F. Murray Abraham received the bulk of the credit when AMADEUS first came out, but I was mesmerized by Tom Hulce as Mozart. In my opinion, Hulce gave one of the all time great performances and the laugh alone should have gotten him an Oscar. He really hit a home run with this role and deserved even more credit than Abraham. Itís not that Abraham didnít do a good job, because he was great, but Hulce had a tougher role and in my opinion, did more with it.

When it comes to music, I really donít know that much. I know what I like and what I donít like, but when you start talking about tunes, notes, bridges and whatnot, I have no idea what youíre talking about. The beauty of the film is that it doesnít matter if you know or like classical music, the story is captivating enough. Salieri and Mozart are wonderful characters and my only complaint is that the film isnít based in factÖat least not completely. Itís highly fictionalized and Salieriís jealousy seems to have been greatly exaggerated, but if you take it for an entertaining film and not a History Channel documentary, itís okay.

Overall, thatís a minor complaint for such a good film. If you havenít seen the film and have any appreciation of Mozart or historical filmmaking, I highly recommend you check it out on Blu-ray. The transfer isn't refernce quality by any means, but it's better than anything we've seen before.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary with Milos Forman and Peter Shaffer: Unfortunately, we only get two special features on this disc and both are redundant. The same information contained here can be found in the documentary. Personally, I found this commentary to be a little dull and difficult to watch since I had already heard the information before and Milos and Peter took too many long pauses.

Making of Amadeus (59:02): This is a fine featurette that looks like it was made several years after the film, but not in the past five years. Everyone shows up to talk about the film and they give some good tidbits about the production and what went into it. It was informative, but it seems the production was pretty straightforward and no one had anything outlandish to say. Overall, itís a decent viewing for fans of the film.

This ďcollectibleĒ Blu-ray edition comes with a musical CD sampler that has most of Mozartís biggest hits. I have to admit that I transferred this to my iPod and have been listening to it for a few days now.

There is also a Theatrical Trailer
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Normally, I would recommend a purchase for a film this good, but Iím not sure it has the re-watchability that other films have. One viewing might be enough, so give it a rental before a blind-buy.
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