Cleopatra, how is it?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Maurice Verploegen, Oct 13, 2001.

  1. Maurice Verploegen

    Maurice Verploegen Stunt Coordinator

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    I couldn't find this anywhere on our search function. I remember seeing this title mention on here before. Something about not playing in some DVD players, skipping or freezing up? I really would like to know, since I have been looking at this title for a while, and DVD-Express has it on sale now for $16.00. Not bad for a three disc set, right? So please inform me and let me know if it is safe to buy this title.
    Thanks
    Maurice Verploegen
     
  2. Gregory Pauswinski

    Gregory Pauswinski Supporting Actor

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    I think Cleopatra is an excellent movie and a great DVD! $16 for this 3 disc set is a bargain. Definitely get it. [​IMG]
    Gregory
     
  3. Peter Kline

    Peter Kline Cinematographer

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    In my opinion "Cleopatra" is not a great movie. It is a good film but just a shadow of what it could have been. Buy the disc for its incredible Todd AO 70mm photography. The sets are all real, no CGI. The hoards of people are real as well. The documentary that comes with the film will explain what the film could have been. In the 80s there was talk about locating the extra footage and re-editing "Cleopatra" into 3 movies. Alas, that was not done and probably will never be done. (Say Robert Harris, wanna try?)
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  4. Dan Brecher

    Dan Brecher Producer

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    They documentary (disc 3) is worth the purchase alone. One of the best documentaries I have seen on DVD. Impressive release.
    Dan (UK)
     
  5. Eric Huffstutler

    Eric Huffstutler Screenwriter

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    On a historical note, "Cleopatra" has a spot in any DVD collection who appreciates classic movies. I believe between the propaganda and sheer visual spectical of the movie, it has survived through the ages. Even Fox stated that it wasn't their Best picture due to so many roadblocks along the way. It was a miracle it was even finished and almost shut Fox down for good due to budgets!
    Like in another post here, the movie has no CGI (sets and props were made full scale and from scratch - several times!) and some artistic liberties taken with historical accuracy. Remember, the real Cleopatra was short, plump, and had gap teeth... all seen as sexy for the time. I doubt if 1960's audiences would have believe her in any other form than what Elizabeth Taylor portrayed her as?
    The disc packaging was a hot topic being the third disc is in a cardboard sleeve. Also, the "exit" music was missing from Disc 2 so the studio made a fix and replaced them free of charge to anyone who requested it. These are the only problems I have heard about.
    As per Fox's presentation on DVD, it is their usual High Standards!
     
  6. Mark Zimmer

    Mark Zimmer Producer

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    How is it? The disc looks great, and has a pile of nifty extras.
    The movie itself is kind of bloated and full of pageantry for pageantry's sake (think Star Trek:The Motion Picture). If the original six-hour cut of 2 movies had been used as originally intended, this might not have been so bad, making the pageantry a smaller proportion of the total. I presume that when two-hours were cut out Fox made sure that the mountains of money they spent would still be visible, so all the pomp was left in and trivia like character development was scissored. One hopes that the missing footage will one day turn up, but as it is the film is something like von Stroheim's Greed....a rather badly cut version of what might have been.
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    "This movie has warped my fragile little mind."
     
  7. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    A year later.....let's re-visit Cleopatra.

    This 1963 epic happens to be on the Fox Movie Channel at the moment. And I'm wondering why they're airing it in Full Screen, rather than 2.35, as they do with many other films. Odd. Anyway....

    How many of you have added Cleopatra to your collection since its April 3, 2001 release?

    What do you think of the 3-disc set?

    Thanks.
     
  8. Brian McHale

    Brian McHale Supporting Actor

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    The DVD set is great, as is the scope of the production; the movie itself is not so great. The documentary is very good as the story behind the movie is fascinating (and I'm usually not into documentaries about film all that much).

    If you're a film buff, or if you like epic movies, you should probably pick it up.
     
  9. Richard F

    Richard F Extra

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    I have had this movie for some time but just got around to watching it. This belongs in everyone's collection,one of the all time classics. It is worth it for the visual spectacle alone. The transfer is beautiful,the audio not bad either. This was the film that changed Hollywood,making Elizabeth Taylor the first highly paid superstar signing for an unheard of 1 million dollars which eventually grew to 7 million. A film budgeted for about 5 million ended up costing 44 million and nearly bankrupting the studio. As has been mentioned the supplementary third disc is an excellent behind the scenes look at the making of the movie and the offscreen romance of Taylor and Burton. It points out that because of the financial problems the production incurred for the studio, Fox changed its policy of funding big budget films alone,going in with Paramount on the Titanic production. Even with half the film's original length cut out,this remains a thoroughly enjoyable film for anyone who likes historical epics.
     
  10. PaulBigelow

    PaulBigelow Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello,

    I think the Rex Harrison "half" is much better than

    the Richard Burton "half". To me, the film kind of

    dragged after the point Harrison's character died.
     
  11. Dan Hitchman

    Dan Hitchman Cinematographer

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    Do you still have to send away for the corrected disc (for the exit music that was mistakenly left off) from Fox or are the fixed sets now available at retailers?

    Dan
     
  12. Brian McHale

    Brian McHale Supporting Actor

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  13. rbirk

    rbirk Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree on the documentary. I believe it was two hours long and felt like ten minutes. Very good, enjoyable and informative.
     
  14. DeeF

    DeeF Screenwriter

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    That documentary is great! Much better than the movie. The documentary is actual history.

    I'm not sure that the movie would be any good, even with all the various "pieces." Manciewicz didn't really get to finish it the way he wanted.

    Isn't it ironic that the second half with Burton is kind of seen to be inferior? All while she was having the affair with him? As if, the affair took the energy out of the filming.

    Truth be told, I think the movie's quality would have improved with someone else in the title role, someone of a more innately intelligent quality (and beautiful, of course). I don't know who that might be, exactly, but how about Audrey Hepburn? From the side, she has the perfect "Egyptian" profile, all long-neck, like the bust of Nefertiti.
     
  15. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Thanks, guys, for these recent (Nov. 2002) reviews of the 3-discer of Cleo.
    Looks like there's another $19+ accounted for. [​IMG]
     
  16. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Can someone inform the uninformed here (me) [​IMG] ......
    Does the Cleopatra DVD set come in a 3-disc Alpha case? Thanx.
     
  17. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    -----
     
  18. Bill McCamy

    Bill McCamy Second Unit

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    The Rex Harrison "character" = "Julius Caesar." How soon we forget.
     
  19. Dharmesh C

    Dharmesh C Supporting Actor

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    Merely average film, starts off well, but dies in the 2nd half. There's a lot to enjoy, but the plot and story structure are very disappointing aspects [​IMG]
    Worth getting for the documentary, marvellous stuff.
     
  20. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Another special feature that struck my eye on this release is :
    >> Original 1963 "making of" featurette: The Fourth Star of Cleopatra.
    I tend to very much like "original" documentaries.
    What are y'all's opinions of this feature? Running time...?
     

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