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This review originally appeared in issue 12 of THE CINEMA LASER.


For Terry Gilliam fans, Columbia TriStar has recently issued his THE ADVENTURES OF BARON MUNCHAUSEN ($45­ a bit too pricey!) in the Letterboxed format. In John Neville, director Gilliam found the perfect actor for the role of the world greatest purveyor of fanciful tales. Neville really brings Munchausen to life with a performance that is dashing, romantic, heroic, sympathetic, comic and even tragic. Yes, Neville is allowed to run the entire gamut in this "larger than life" role. THE ADVENTURES OF BARON MUNCHAUSEN truly is an adventure, as the elderly Baron undertakes the task of saving a town from the onslaught of the Turks. But before he can save the town, Munchausen must track down all of his old associates. This leads the Baron on an expedition to the moon, down a volcano were he encounters The gods Vulcan and Venus, and into the belly of a great sea beast. In addition to Neville, the cast of THE ADVENTURES OF BARON MUNCHAUSEN includes Eric Idle, Oliver Reed, Robin Williams, Jonathan Pryce and Uma Thurman. The casting of Thurman as Venus was utterly brilliant, since she is one of the most exquisitely beautiful women to ever appear on the silver screen, and the only one currently working in films who actually looks like a goddess. She has a face that a man could never tire of gazing at, at least I know I would never tire of it.

Columbia TriStar has given THE ADVENTURES OF BARON MUNCHAUSEN a very nice Letterboxed transfer which recreates the 1.85:1 aspect ratio quite well. The image is richly detailed and the colors well saturated. The digitally encoded Dolby Surround soundtrack has a pleasing mix. The Sony pressing was the only weak link in the chain­ far too many speckles throughout the disc.


Laserdisc reviews are Copyright © 1996 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.



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