STARRING Silvano Mangano, Franco Citti, Alida Valli DIRECTED BY Pier Paolo Pasolini SCREENPLAY Pier Paolo Pasolini, Sophocles (Play) MPAA RATING NR RUNNING TIME 104 Mins. DISTRIBUTED BY Eureka Entertainment (Europe) BLU-RAY EXTRAS Gorgeous new HD restoration of the film in its original aspect ratio, in 1080p on the Blu-ray
• Newly translated optional English subtitles
• Original Italian theatrical trailer
• 28-PAGE BOOKLET featuring vintage writing by Pasolini, excerpts from an interview with the director by Oswald Stack about the film, and rare archival imagery
"Oedipus Rex" a True Master of Cinema
My European readers should rejoice that Eureka Entertainment has lovingly restored Pier Paolo Pasolini's 1967 classic take on Oedipus Rex and is releasing on both a Blu-Ray/DVD dual format and a stand-alone DVD release. The film came out just three years after Pasolini's marvelous The Gospel According to Matthew, and was Pasolini's first color feature film. Few filmmakers could so masterfully capture a story both tender and sparse with Moroccan landscape captured magnificently.
Oedipus Rex is divided into three sections set in three different eras - 1) 1920's Italy, 2) A more mythical era representing the actual era of the original tale by Sophocles, and 3) modern-day Bologna. Pasolini's presentation is a more realistic presentation than we often find while approaching such larger than life tales as Oedipus Rex, though I found myself reflecting upon the recent Coriolanus while watching this visually arresting and compelling film. Rather than focusing on the story's most exploitative potential, Pasolini tells a cautionary tale towards those in power, with Franco Citti's performance as Oedipus rex a performance that commands your attention quite powerfully even if Pasolini's rather straightforward style does occasionally mute the film's emotional impact.
There are many reasons to pick up this release from Europe's Eureka Entertainment, but the biggest one of all may simply be that Eureka has so wondrously restored and packaged this release in a way that reminds you that they truly are Europe's answer to the Criterion Collection that seems so popular in the United States. The accompanying 28-page booklet, complete with vintage writing from Pasolini, is merely the dessert placed upon an already masterful cinematic meal.
For more information, visit the Eureka Entertainment website.