Amadeus--The Director's Cut finally accords this masterful work the DVD treatment it deserves. The handsome anamorphic widescreen picture is accompanied by a choice of Dolby 5.1 or Dolby stereo sound options, and it's all contained on one side of the disc (the original single-disc DVD release was that crime against the format, a "flipper"). Director Milos Forman and writer Peter Shaffer provide a chatty though sporadic commentary, but they're obviously still too mesmerised by the movie to do much more than offer the odd anecdote. Disc 2 contains an excellent new hour-long "making of" documentary, with contributions from Forman, Shaffer, Sir Neville Marriner and all the main actors, taking in the scriptwriting, choice of music, casting and problems involved in filming in Communist Czechoslovakia with half the crew and extras working for the Secret Police
AMADEUS - DIRECTOR'S CUT includes new footage that was not used in the 1984 original, as well as improved sound.
In a lavish 18th-century parlor in Austria, an elderly man is found, by his servant, with his throat slashed. The wound is self-inflicted, and the man is the little-known composer Salieri (F. Murray Abraham), contemporary and adversary of the now-famed, but once reviled, composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Tom Hulce). Later, from his cell in an insane asylum, Salieri tells a priest (Herman Meckler) the story of his association with Mozart, confessing that he actually killed the brilliantly gifted but troubled young man. Based on the award-winning play by Peter Shaffer, Milos Forman's riveting, brilliant, Oscar-winning AMADEUS is a fictionalized account of the real-life mysterious death of Mozart. Abraham, in the role that won him the Best Actor Oscar, is the celebrated court composer to Joseph II (Jeffrey Jones)--his confidence and religious dedication shaken when he meets the boorish 26-year-old Mozart as he chases his future wife (Elizabeth Berridge) around a party while making obscene remarks. Furious that this clownish boy can produce such beautiful music, Salieri determines to keep Mozart's talent from lasting recognition and sets himself on a course for Mozart's destruction that leads to his own as well. Mozart continues to mount beautiful, moving operas (incredibly staged in the film), but becomes obsessed with writing a Requiem as his friends, family, health, and resources waste away, Salieri's manipulating presence always there. It is hard to imagine anyone--whether they are knowledgeable about classical music or not--who would not be held captive by this superb feast for the eyes and ears, a film whose excellence can be felt in every detail.
Disc 1 Special Features
Audio Commentary By Director Milos Forman And Writer Peter Shaffer
Widescreen 2.35:1 Anamorphic
Dolby Digital 5.1
Running Time 173 Minutes
Disc 2 Special Features
"The Making Of Amadeus" Documentary (37mins)
Cast/Director Career Highlights