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Press Release Criterion Press Release: The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988) (4k UHD) (Blu-ray) (1 Viewer)

Ronald Epstein

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The boundless imagination of Terry Gilliam yields a dazzling fantasy of epic proportions. Inspired by the extravagant exploits of the fabled Baron Munchausen, this spectacle—born of a famously turbulent production—follows the whimsical eighteenth-century nobleman (John Neville) as he embarks on an outlandish quest that takes him from faraway lands to the moon to the belly of a sea monster and beyond, meanwhile waging battle against a vengeful sultan and the tyranny of logic. Packed frame to frame with special effects, mischievous wit, and colorful performances—including a young Sarah Polley as the Baron’s no-nonsense sidekick—the Oscar-nominated The Adventures of Baron Munchausen is a lavish celebration of the triumph of make-believe over reality.

FILM INFO​

  • United Kingdom
  • 1988
  • 126 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.85:1
  • English
  • Spine #1166

    DIRECTOR-APPROVED 4K UHD + BLU-RAY SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES​

    • New 4K digital restoration, approved by writer-director Terry Gilliam, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack
    • One 4K UHD disc of the film presented in Dolby Vision HDR and two Blu-rays with the film and special features
    • Audio commentary featuring Gilliam and his coscreenwriter, Charles McKeown
    • Documentary on the making of the film
    • New video essay by critic and filmmaker David Cairns about the history of the Baron Munchausen character
    • Behind-the-scenes footage of the film’s special effects, narrated by Gilliam
    • Deleted scenes with commentary by Gilliam
    • Storyboards for unfilmed scenes, narrated by Gilliam and McKeown
    • Original marketing materials including a trailer and electronic-press-kit featurettes, as well as preview cards and advertising proposals read by Gilliam
    • Miracle of Flight (1974), an animated short film by Gilliam
    • Episode of The South Bank Show from 1991 on Gilliam
    • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
    • PLUS: An essay by critic and author Michael Koresky

      New cover by Abigail Giuseppe

      January 3, 2023
 

Ronald Epstein

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Thank you for supporting HTF when you preorder using the link below. If you are using an adblocker you will not see link. As an Amazon Associate HTF earns from qualifying purchases

 
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titch

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Very decent of Sony to licence this out to Criterion!

Having been one of the very few people who saw this when it was released theatrically, I've always had this as the quintessential Gilliam film. The last one he was able to make with a vast budget and virtually free rein by a major studio, enabling him to put his feverish and wild imagination up on the screen. The few times Gilliam was allowed to beaver away in this fashion, without the suits interfering, resulted in The Crimson Permanent Assurance, Brazil and Baron Munchausen. And after Munchausen, nobody dared let Gilliam off the leash.


The Criterion triptych CAV Laserdisc was one of my most treasured titles. Sadly, it doesn't look like they were able to port over the fantastic interviews with co-writer Charles McKeown, producer Thomas Schuhly, production designer Dante Ferretti, and costume designer Gabriella Pescucci.
 

jayembee

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As I mentioned in the generic Criterion announcements tread, the Criterion LD was my first viewing of the film.

In the same post I'd mentioned that while watching the UHD of The Meaning of Life the other day, I started thinking about which Gilliam films I'd like the see in 4K. This was top of the list, with Brazil in (very close) second place.
 

Jeffrey D

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I have a bunch of Gilliam Criterion BluRays. I’ll likely get this one in UHD, even though I’ve never seen it.
 

B-ROLL

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I have a bunch of Gilliam Criterion BluRays. I’ll likely get this one in UHD, even though I’ve never seen it.
A young Uma Thurman plays Venus de Milo
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on the half-shell what more do you need to know ;)?

I saw it in a matinee nearly full theater(e). Some were awed by it. Some felt the need to go church afterward to cleanse their sins ...
and for those I say ...
;)! It's evil ... don't touch it ;)!
 

Tino

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I saw the infamous last screening in Paramus NJ with Gilliam attending. It’s mentioned in the laserdisc credits. I forget what the deal was but it was based on audience cards on who would get Final Cut I believe. People complained that there wasn’t enough Sting in the film!

“Another cause for concern at Columbia are the results of two market research screenings conducted last October in Paramus, N.J., and Roosevelt Field, N.Y. While some in the audience liked the film, others walked out.”



I LOVED it.
 

bujaki

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I saw the infamous last screening in Paramus NJ with Gilliam attending. It’s mentioned in the laserdisc credits. I forget what the deal was but it was based on audience cards on who would get Final Cut I believe. People complained that there wasn’t enough Sting in the film!

“Another cause for concern at Columbia are the results of two market research screenings conducted last October in Paramus, N.J., and Roosevelt Field, N.Y. While some in the audience liked the film, others walked out.”



I LOVED it.
So did I!
 

Tino

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So did I!
No shit! Cool. I remember Gilliam celebrating in the lobby and hugging people. People cheered at the end of the screening. Apparently this was before they read the audience cards and tallied up the results.
 

titch

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I saw the new 4K UHD today and immediately afterwards went to listen to the commentary, as Terry Gilliam's commentaries are among the best around. It's a very long time since I last saw the Criterion LaserDisc - I never listened to the 2008 commentary on the Sony blu-ray. However, listening to the 2008 commentary included on the 4K UHD, recorded with coscreenwriter and actor, Charles McKeown, I felt it wasn't nearly as good as the one I remembered from the 1992 LaserDisc. Gilliam and McKeown are rather aimless and jokey, they aren't prepared, they don't finish sentences or trains of thought, keep interrupting one another - I'd much rather listen to the 1992 Gilliam one again. I remember that as being more structured and fresh. I don't have my LaserDisc player hooked up anymore - does anyone have a link to the 1992 commentary? I couldn't find one on Google.
 

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