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Roman Holiday Blu-ray Review

Roman

“Roman Holiday” is classic Hollywood at its finest.

Worn out from an exhausting tour of public appearances in Europe, Princess Ann essentially stresses out and is given a sedative to calm her down. The now groggy Princess escapes her room and winds up on the streets of Rome where she meets an American newspaper reporter (Joe) who doesn’t know who Ann is at first. When he does find out, he thinks he has the story of a lifetime. He sets out to have a day of sightseeing and adventure with the Princess and Joe’s photographer pal Irving, but as he gets to know her, he begins to fall for her and push aside his work duties. The Princess herself is also falling for Joe as she gets to have the day of her life outside of all of her obligations.

It’s time to cross another “Most wanted on Blu-ray” title off the list as “Roman Holiday” is finally hitting the format through the Paramount Presents line. What is there to say about this 1953 gem that hasn’t been said? The William Wyler directed romantic classic is as good as cinema gets. The expertly written fairy tale esque drama by Dalton Trumbo, Ian McLellan and John Dighton is filled with heartwarming moments (like the iconic Mouth of Truth bit), wonderful characterization, great chemistry between the leads (I’ll get to that shortly), memorable costumes by Edith Head, authentic and grand location shooting in Rome, Italy that really elevates the movie, and a moving non-cop out bittersweet ending that feels oh so rare.

Going back to the cast, this was Audrey Hepburn’s first starring role and what a debut it is. It’s not hard to see why she won an Oscar for her role as the Princess as she is so real, charming, regal, and warm in every scene. Gregory Peck (who plays Joe) has real chemistry with Hepburn and really nails the scenes where he says so much without ever saying a word. Eddie Albert (who plays the photographer Irving) isn’t in the film a ton, but he’s a great supporting presence who shines in every scene that he is in. 

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.37:1 1080p. How does it look? The B&W film has been given a sharp hi-def transfer.

Audio Track: Dolby TrueHD Mono. How does it sound? A nice clean Mono track that is sure to please fans.

Extras:
* Digital copy
* Original theatrical and teaser trailers and a re-release trailer
* Production, movie, publicity and premiere still galleries
* “Filmmaker Focus: Leonard Maltin On Roman Holiday”- A new 7 minute extra featuring the legendary film critic/film historian talking about the classic film.
* “Behind The Gates: Costumes”- An extra about Paramount film costumes.
* “Rome With A Princess”- A look at some of the Rome locations featured in the film.
* “Audrey Hepburn: The Paramount Years”- A self-explanatory half-hour bonus feature.
* “Dalton Trumbo: From A-List To Blacklist”- A featurette on the life of the famous screenwriter
* “Paramount In The ‘50s”- An archival 9 ½ minute featurette on popular Paramount films of this era.
* “Remembering Audrey”- A touching tribute to the late star.

September 6, 2020 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , , ,

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