חזרה

CLEOPATRA (1963)

For Hicksflicks.com, May 31, 2013

Although it has been available for some time overseas, and you could buy it online as an overpriced import, "Cleopatra" has finally come to the USA on Blu-ray in a gorgeous high-definition transfer that makes the film's staggeringly gaudy excesses as eye-popping as any movie you've ever seen.

The film itself — perhaps more famous today for kindling an on-again/off-again lifetime romance between its stars, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton — is still vilified in some corners as dull, dull, dull, while others believe it should be re-examined as an underrated effort well worth watching, if not exactly a classic.

I fall somewhere in the latter camp. At four hours, "Cleopatra" is very long, but there is an intermission, and it's well worth a look if only for the eye candy that consistently fills the screen.

Aside from Taylor and Burton, the cast includes Rex Harrison, Hume Cronyn, Martin Landau, Roddy McDowall and Carroll O'Connor.

"Cleopatra" is available in two different two-disc versions, with colorful book packaging ($35 retail but sells at $25) or without the book ($25 retail but sells at $17). Loads of bonus features are on both versions, including a fair amount of new material as well as everything from earlier DVD editions.