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Lawrence of Arabia Blu-ray Review

“Lawrence Of Arabia” makes a big splash on Blu-ray.

Set during World War One, the based on a true story David Lean masterpiece revolves around the life and death of T.E. Lawrence. The movie begins with his accidental death on a motorcycle and switches to his time in WW1 where he has been assigned to observe and learn about Prince Faisal’s revolt against the Turks. Lawrence’s role soon changes when he begins to consult with Prince Faisal on battle strategies. From there on out, Lawrence becomes a pivotal figure for the revolt as he helps persuade the Howeitat tribe to join their cause as well as stage successful attacks against the Turks. Unfortunately for Lawrence, however, his mental state begins to deteriorate through this conflict as he begins to question who he is and what his morals are.

Often praised as one of the best films ever made, director David Lean’s “Lawrence of Arabia” truly an epic film that lives up to the word ‘epic.’ From Maurice Jarre’s unforgettable score to F.A. Young’s gorgeous cinematography work that uses every inch of the screen to its full advantage,  ‘Lawrence’ is the type of film that you can just gaze at (and listen to) and get lost in.

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that the film boasts an all-star cast as well. Peter O’Toole gives a career best performance as the heroic, but emotionally scarred T.E. Lawrence. He brings real depth to the character’s arduous journey. Omar Sharif, Anthony Quinn, and Alec Guinness also deliver some of their best work as well.

Summary: While some may argue that the film is a tad overlong, most people won’t mind the lengthy, picturesque, and satisfying viewing experience. If you’ve never seen this film before; now’s the time to see it on Blu-ray. If you’re itching to see it in hi-def, it’s time to pick this disc up.

Note: A Blu-ray Collector’s Edition is also available that features a nifty hardcover coffee table book filled with photographs, factoids, behind-the-scenes information and more.

Video/Audio:

Having seen the film several times on VHS in the past, I was pretty astonished by how vibrant the colors were in this 2.20:1 1080p presentation. Peter O’Toole’s blue eyes, the desert, the oasis, the intricate battle sequences all look incredibly crisp and clear here. This hi-def transfer does not disappoint.

The 5.1 DTS-HD audio track is equally impressive. Jarre’s phenomenal score has truly never sounded better on film here. Also, keep your ears peeled for other great sound centric sequences like the echo moments and the sound heavy action set pieces.

Extras:
* Ultraviolet Digital Copy.
* “New York Premiere”- A little over a minute of footage of the film’s premiere in NY.
* A nearly 5 minute extra on the advertising campaigns for various releases of the film.
* “Secrets Of Arabia: A Picture-In-Graphic Track”- A picture-in-picture extra feature that contains pop-up photos, maps, trivia, and more.
* “A Conversation With Steven Spielberg”- The legendary director tells stories about his love of  the film and how it has impacted his life and career.
* “Maan, Jordan: The Camels Are Cast”- A 2 minute old school featurette about the camels in the film.
* “Peter O’Toole Revisits Lawrence Of Arabia”- A reflective piece in which the classic actor talks about everything from life on set to David Lean to T.E. Lawrence and cast members. Well worth watching.
* “Making Of Lawrence Of Arabia”- An in-depth hour long making of that covers a wide variety of topics such as the iconic score, David Lean’s style, the breathtaking cinematography, production values and much more. A must see for fans.
* “In Search Of Lawrence”- Another old school featurette about the difficult desert film shoot.
* “Wind, Sand and Star: The Making Of A Classic”- A short vintage featurette containing cast and crew interviews, behind-the-scenes footage and discussions about the difficult shoot (again).

*”Romance Of Arabia”- Last, but not least is yet another short vintage featurette that talks about the beauty of the locations in that region that David Lean and company shot at.

November 21, 2012 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , ,

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