Chariots Of Fire
During the 1980's, a number of superb, highly topical films were produced, including "Babette's Feast," a cinematic homage to the culinary arts, and "Chariots of Fire," the quintessential film on the sport of running. Although both films were indeed "runaways" at the box office, "Chariots..." has clearly won the race to the Blu-ray format.
The film is based on a true story of two track stars in training for the 1924 Olympic games. Despite their differing personalities and religious backgrounds, both are victorious in their sport, and go on to attain their goals in life as well. The lavishly mounted film became such a popular favorite, that it won a Best Picture Oscar in 1982. Yet the deliberate pace of the film, with endless sequences of sprinters shot in slow-motion may send some viewers running in the opposite direction. The visuals are certainly enhanced by the stylish, period costumes, terribly British boarding school interiors and throngs of pretty preppies.
Being released to coincide with the opening of the 2012 Olympics, Warner Brothers "Chariots of Fire" Blu-ray succeeds on most levels. The new 2-disc collection includes a high-definition transfer of the film which is often striking, but in many instances, not extraordinary. However, it is a noticeable improvement on any previous DVD incarnation. Naturally, the film is presented in its original aspect ratio---and in vibrant color. The DTS-HD Master audio is impressive, doing justice to Vangelis' ever-popular main theme. The abundant extras include interviews, documentaries, commentaries, deleted scenes, and screen tests. For this new release, three newly-produced featurettes have been included. The Blu-ray is enclosed in an attractive hardbound book that includes essays, photos and trivia relating to "Chariots..." As an added bonus, the package includes a CD soundtrack sampler.
Runners, track and field enthusiasts, and devotees of the film will be simply overjoyed by this new, definitive edition.
Chariots of Fire