PARAMOUNT has just released a special edition of what is arguably Billy Wilder's best film, "SUNSET BOULEVARD," on dvd. William Holden gives an unforgettable performance as struggling writer, Joe Gillis. When hiding his car from repo-men at the estate of silent screen legend Norma Desmond(Gloria Swanson), Joe is introduced to the craziness of her delusions of making a comeback. Erick von Stroheim gives another unforgettable performance as her butler, once her film director! When Joe convinces Norma his rewrite of the famous "Salome" will elevate her back to where she belongs in stardom, he finds that his plan for rebuilding his own comeback, let alone, his life, is no longer under his control, and he needs to be fearful of many things he hasn't considered.
PARAMOUNT has provided the correct 1.33:1 aspect ratio for this release. The black&white image is wonderful, offering deep contrast in virtually every scene, and it appears to have been really cleaned up! The contrast is notably improved over the previous dvd, and some minor compression problems of the previous dvd are absent here. It's certainly sharper than any previous presentation on cable, dvd or laserdisc. Great job!
PARAMOUNT has provided the options for either 2.0 stereo or mono mix.(a 5.1 remix wouldn't work for this classic!) Fidelity is solid and with the exception of 2 quick moments, none of the hiss one might expect from an older film, is present. In scene-to-scene comparisons with the previous dvd, dynamic range and balance are notably improved upon, with narration, dialogue and music feeling complimentary to one another.
Loads of extras are included here, including the great ones from the
previous collector's edition, offering the best:
"Morgue Prolog Script Pages." There are so many worthwhile supplements offered here, that fans of the film, shouldn't wait or pass this version up!