Wednesday, May 07, 2014
Perversity re: Sorcerer? Blu-Ray review
Part of that may be that I now have to say goodbye to the long-held feeling of wanting this film to come out in a decent version. As with Clearcut and the extended version of Phase IV, I've been on that page for so long that now that it somehow has become a part of me; I've gotten attached to the longing, and now that the Blu is actually out there, now that I've gotten (I think) what I've been desiring all along, it's left a blank space. That part of my identity associated with the desire for a Sorcerer restoration now has to move on to something else... there's a tiny feeling of loss, of letting go. I am truly a sentimental guy, I guess.
Still, I'm not sure how I feel about Friedkin's tinkerings with the film. Unsurprisingly, the soundtrack has been remixed for 5.1, but I also noticed a few musical cues that I did not recall, ones apparently not by Tangerine Dream, unless they were playing stringed instruments; I'll have to do some cross-comparing to see if I'm right, here (I also want to check the nightmare image of the rooster getting its head cut off; it seemed different - shorter, faster, harder to make out - on Blu). (Edit: there are also complaints on the Sorcerer blog about an added gunshot sound at the end of the film, though Friedkin has said that's actually the sound of a vehicle backfiring... like I say, I'll have to do a close comparison).
I guess in the end Friedkin has every right to try to re-present this film in a new light, especially given that it never got a fair shake the first time around. If the end result is a terrific Blu-Ray presentation, which, whatever my quibbles, looks a hell of a lot cooler than any previous release of the film, why should I hold it against him? Of COURSE it looks different; that's the whole point. Still, I'm kind of shocked and surprised and disappointed with myself, as much as with the Blu-Ray: why wasn't I more excited by it tonight? What did I do wrong? This has been one of my favourite movies for years, but tonight it kind of didn't do it for me. Maybe it just wasn't time to re-watch it yet; I only saw it again a year or so ago, and it's at best a watch-every-three-years movie. But maybe all these changes do actually somehow damage the film as much as they save it, at least for a certain kind of viewer...? One can only imagine how I'd feel if I was actually watching this on a hi-def plasma TV...
Anyhow, there's a terrific interview with Friedkin here (that gunshot is discussed). Thanks to David M. for sharing it. I think I'll go see what DVD Beaver is saying about this film... I wonder how many people out there are responding to it the way I am?