An American classic was released on blu-ray this past week.
Scarface appears in the format for the first time in limited edition steel packaging. With a restored copy and 7.1 digital sound, the movie has never looked or sounded better.
Scarface, released in 1983, was directed by Brian De Palma with a script written by Oliver Stone. It is based on a 1932 Howard Hawks film of the same name. Hawks film was based on Al Capone, while Stone’s script is set in Miami after an influx of Cuban immigrants released by Castro to join family in the U.S.
Al Pacino plays Tony Montana, a low level hood with big aspirations. The movie follows his rise to power and ultimate demise. Pacino’s performance is genius. It’s easy to write it off as being over-the-top, but this is a choice of Pacino to play Montana as a man hiding insecurities with machismo. There are so many other wonderful performances including early roles for Michelle Pfeiffer and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio.
Scarface was met with mixed reactions from critics. Almost getting an X-rating for its violence (particularly for a shower scene that seems bad but in reality, all of the violence happens off-screen). The movie has gone on to become a cult hit influencing the rap culture and is now considered one of the better gangster movies. It’s not in the same league as The Godfather and Goodfellas, but it’s an amazing film that is a time capsule of the cocaine-fueled early 1980’s.
There are so many features on this disc, including a DVD copy of the original 1932 Scarface. Two of my favorite features are a Scarface Scorecard which lets you track the “F-words” and bullets fired and a picture-in-picture feature that lets viewers see scene comparisons between the the original film and the 1983 version. There is also a new documentary called The Scarface Phenomenon that talks about the trouble the movie had on release and how it has gone on to influence many of today’s filmmakers.
Other features include:
- 10 Collectable Art Cards
- Deleted Scenes
- The World of Tony Montana
- The Rebirth
- The Acting
- The Creating
- Scarface: The TV Version
- The Making of Scarface: The Video Game
- pocket-Blu features
- BD-Live content
- A digital copy of the film
The movie also available in a limited edition humidor for the major collectors. It’s suggested retail price is $999.99, but Amazon is currently selling it for $699.99.
Scarface is currently available in stores in Central Iowa wherever DVDs and Blu-rays are sold.