“I want the world Chico” and I want it on Blu-ray! One of the most polarizing movies ever put to film comes to the Blu-ray format complete with a brand new print that makes the movie look better than it ever has. Whether you love it or hate it, Brian De Palma’s Scarface is one of the most influential and violent movies in the last 20 years.
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I’m not going to waste too much time reviewing a movie most everyone has already seen. While Pacino always gets the accolades for his wild over the top performance as Drug Lord Tony Montana, Steven Bauer’s amazing performance as Pacino’s sidekick – Manny Ribera is rarely brought up. He is the Yin to Tony’s Yang, but they are cut from the same cloth, it’s just that Manny is more subtle and doesn’t take things as seriously as T.M. Bauer gives a really richly layered and subtle performance – especially compared to Pacino’s scene chewing one. Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio’s Gina Montana also pulls off one of the most memorable supporting performances in the last 20 years.
Every time I watch Scarface I come away thinking it is either the most overrated piece of trash that I’ve ever seen or a brilliant balls to the wall satire of the gangster genre. I never know if I’m supposed to take this movie seriously or not. This is a movie that I really have to be in the mood for. After watching this Blu-ray version I am back firmly in the love it
Video and Audio Quality
I watched an HD version of this movie a few weeks ago on Spike HD and it looked like a grainy hot mess, so I was skeptical of the Blu-ray. This is a brand new transfer and the movie has never looked or sounded better. Cinematographer John A. Alonzo
and De Palma have to be ecstatic with the quality of this new print. Everything looks shiny, pristine and new.
This is why we have HD, this transfer makes the movie feel like a brand new experience. This transfer brings out the glitz, and glamour of the times: the style of the 80s – not really timeless. De Palma’s famous blimp shot is still mesmerizing.
I never noticed how glossy Director Brian De Palma’s Scarface world truly is, until I saw this on Blu-ray. Giorgio Moroder’s soundtrack truly comes across on the new 7.1 DTS HD and 2.0 Stereo DTS audio transfers.
The packaging is nothing special, it comes in a hard Tin Can “case.” I love that this is a single disk release (not counting the digital copy), yet they don’t skimp on the extras. While most of the extras are in standard def, they are short and do a good job of putting the movie in context. They get extra credit by going the extra mile and giving us the original Scarface movie on DVD.
- Almost 30 minutes of deleted scenes (unfortunately these scenes are so grainy they are barely watchable)
- The Scarface Phenomenon (38 Mins) – a new documentary that explores the impact of the movie and features interviews with critics and celebrities talking about the movie
- The World of Tony Montana (12 Minutes) – a short about the lifestyle of Drug Dealers,
- The Rebirth (10 Minutes) – a look at the birth of the Scarface movie,
- The Acting (15 Mins) – interviews with Al Pacino and Steven Bauer
- Creating (30 Mins) – Production of the Movie
- The Making of Scarface: The Video Game (12 Mins)
- Scarface TV Version (2 Mins) – Short look at how Scarface was converted to TV
- BD Live – Generally, I hate BD Live and don’t waste my time with it, but I like Universal’s implementation, I don’t have to register or login just to watch a trailer of the movie that I just purchased. This movie isn’t compatible with Universal’s Pocket Blu.
Universal Home Video and everyone involved should be proud of this release; it’s not a half assed money grab, they breathed new life into this movie and gave this release a lot of love and care, it is reference quality work and a must own Blu-ray.
Final Grade A+
EM Review by
Originally posted 9/05/2011