Saturday, November 10, 2012

Sorcerer 1977

Allow me to gush,...
This movie, pretty much, just blew me away. Can't recommend it enough.  It's got man vs man, man vs machine, man vs nature and man vs the mafia.  It's a great thrill ride that takes it's main character (played by Roy Scheider/originally intended for Steve McQueen) from a flight for survival to a misguided act of redemption/hope and ultimately to his own insanity.  I got a little confused during the first half of the movie because, for whatever reason, my mind didn't make the jump with the characters from act 1 to act 2. Once I got my head wrapped around a few things, I was strapped in and being dragged along for the ride.  If you've never heard of this jem, it isn't really too big of a surprise.  The movie tanked at the box office.  There have been a few theories thrown around as to why that happened.

-It was released one month after a little film some of you may have heard of called Star Wars.  
-This was William Friedkins follow up to The French Connection and The Exorcist which set expectations for mainstream moviegoers very high.  I would argue that the movie was simply ahead of it's time. 
-Can we get a more misleading title?   Let's see.

Watch the following movies:

Snakes on a it.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre...saw that one coming
Edward Scissorhands...Oh, Tim Burton?  Ok, makes sense. 
Driving Miss Daisy...really???

Another big reason for this movies obscurity is it's lack of presence on VHS, Laserdisc, DVD and Blu-ray.  Best I can tell, this movie has been released three times.  One VHS, one laserdisc and one DVD.  That's relatively unheard of, nowadays.  No Special Edition?  No Collectors Edition? No 2-Disc Directors Cut Edition? No Remastered Ultimate Edition?  No Anniversary Edition? No Sorcerific Essentials Box Set?  

There is also a lot of confusion regarding the "aspect ratio" on the available releases.  All of them have been full frame.  The confusion  is whether or not these releases were full frame pan and scan or full frame open matte.  Friedkin has been quoted as saying that he preferred his films to be seen in the full screen format which gives us some indication that the presentation on home video is actually open matte.  He doesn't, however, come right out and state this explicitly. 

Well, that's about all I've got to say about this great movie except that you should find a copy and enjoy.  I believe Sorcerer was available on Netflix instant watch at one point.  Good Luck!

Here is a link to a great and informative article about Sorcerer.  I'm really glad you read my write up, first. 

Wouldn't this be nice?  I must admit, though, I literally jumped up off the ground when I found my used copy of Sorcerer on DVD at a store in San Antonio.  Oh, happy day.

Hey, this sounds familiar...

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