Hi Bryan Here….
Criterion rolls out the red carpet yet again with the re-release of the instant cult classic ‘Dazed and Confused’. This time it is on glorious blu-ray. This movie will live on forever. There really isn’t another movie like it. The characters, the music, the dialogue are all quoted and duplicated today. This film started the careers of tons of big named actors including: Parker Posey, Ben Affleck, Matthew McConaughey, Milla Jovovich, Joey Lauren Adams, and a few others. This re-release is virtually the same as the previous criterion release, but in blu-ray. And let me just say, it is worth the upgrade. The picture and sound are top notch.
I remember first seeing this film way back in the mid 90’s and just falling in love with the film. I laughed as hard as I’ve ever laughed at a movie before and found myself back then and still today (almost 20 years later) quoting the film. The film takes place on the last day of school in 1976 in Texas. It follows a sort of episodic flow of incoming freshman and incoming seniors in high school over the course of a day and the rituals of entering higher school. The incoming seniors every year plot out to brutally beat the incoming freshman with wooden paddles as a hazing ritual and then after the beatings, the upperclassmen usually invite the freshman out to party and go riding around with them. From here you see the personal conflicts with a couple of characters, the drug induced adolescence of a few more characters, and the general comedy that just comes from high school. It all works and stays with you for a life time. And let me just say, Matthew McConaughey was born to play his character “Wooderson”. This movie should be in every household and be enjoyed for many years to come. Love every moment of this film.
The movie comes with a 1080p/AVC MPEG-4 transfer in an 1.85:1 aspect ratio. The film was supervised by Linklater and cinematographer Lee Daniel and just looks fantastic. There is a very thin layer of grain here and there, but wow, what an improvement from the Universal version. The detail is very strong and has just a pure and richer quality than ever before. The colors pop vibrantly and the depth of the new transfer looks incredible. It really brings the film to life in a new and big way. Great transfer. The audio has a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix and just sounds fantastic. The dialogue is crystal clear and crisp and the music boasts on all speakers. The classic rock music and the little ambience sounds really make this audio track. Just simply brilliant.
- Audio Commentary with Richard Linklater – This is one the top ten best commentaries on a film. Linklater gives a hilarious and informative commentary on his film. He talks about how he came up with the story and the real life inspirations for the film and even admits he is the one responsible for Mitch Cramer touching his nose constantly. A must listen on multiple occasions.
- Deleted Scenes (HD, 26 min) – A whopping 17 deleted scenes while good they were not added to the final cut, but are definitely very entertaining to watch. I got to see how the theft of the statue took place and of course more Affleck as O’Bannion.
- Making Dazed (HD, 46 min) –A great feature that has vintage interviews as well as interviews from 2003/2004 of the cast and crew on the making of the film. Tons of funny and great stories here.
- Auditions (HD, 23 min) – Excellent original audition footage from almost every main actor in the film. This is amazing to see how the actors first portrayed these iconic characters. Excellent.
- Beer Bust at the Moon Tower (HD, 2 hr) – A lengthy and excellent feature that consists of rare footage and interviews from the making of the film. Anything and everything you wanted to possible know on the film is in this great extra. Fans of the film will truly love this.
- Trailer (HD, 2 min) – The trailer for the film.