Blu-ray Review: Special Edition of ‘Chariots of Fire’ Timed to 2012 Olympics

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Warner Bros. released another one of their book editions of a catalog Blu-ray film and while some of these seem somewhat random in their timing, this one has a nice real-world tie-in as “Chariots of Fire” hits stores just in time for the 2012 Olympics. “Chariots of Fire” is a well-made epic even if my strongest memory of it is related to the stunned realization that it is the movie that beat “Raiders of the Lost Ark” for Best Picture. Yes, the Academy makes mistakes too.

HollywoodChicago.com Blu-ray rating: 4.0/5.0
Rating: 4.0/5.0

“Chariots of Fire” has held up expectedly. If, like me, you think it’s an entertaining period drama that was a bit over-praised at the time (it won four Oscars, including Best Picture, but Warren Beatty stole director from Hugh Hudson for “Reds”) then the years are unlikely to have changed that opinion. If you love it, this release will only give you reason to love it more. Some early ’80s films haven’t held up well. “Chariots of Fire” has held up just fine and my opinion of it is virtually the same as when I first saw it on VHS (good-but-a-bit-overrated). Although it should be noted that the film’s greatest strengths — its sweeping scope and memorable score — have been enhanced greatly by Blu-ray. This is the kind of detailed film that is a natural fit for HD and should make a lovely addition to the collections of movie lovers around the world.

Chariots of Fire was released on Blu-ray on July 10, 2012
Chariots of Fire was released on Blu-ray on July 10, 2012
Photo credit: Warner Bros.

Synopsis:
A cinematic masterpiece that earned four Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Chariots of Fire triumphs once more in beautiful hi-def Blu-ray for the first time! Ian Charleson and Ben Cross star in this widely celebrated, inspiring true story of two British runners competing in the 1924 Olympic Games. Now in its full glory, this stunning new Blu-ray edition includes a premium 36 page book filled with behind-the-scenes photos, trivia, production history and more. Also included is a bonus CD of 4 songs from the Oscar winning soundtrack by composer Vangelis, including gamed #1 hit “Titles” as well as “Abraham’s Theme,” “Eric’s Theme” and “Jerusalem.”

Special Features:
o 4 Documentaries: Paris, 1924: Birth of the Modern Games; David Puttnam, A Cinematic Champion; Wings on Their Heels: The Making Of Chariots Of Fire; Chariots of Fire: A Reunion
o Interview With Director Hugh Hudson
o Commentary By Director Hugh Hudson
o Deleted Scenes
o Screen Tests

“Chariots of Fire” stars Ben Cross, Ian Charleson, Ian Holm, and John Gielgud. It was written by Colin Welland and directed by Hugh Hudson. It was released on Blu-ray on July 10, 2012.

HollywoodChicago.com content director Brian Tallerico

By BRIAN TALLERICO
Content Director
HollywoodChicago.com
brian@hollywoodchicago.com

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