Scarface: The World is Yours Collector’s Edition – 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review

Scarface (1983)

Scarface (1983)
Scarface is the second gangster film that Al Pacino has starred in. The big difference is with the characters themselves. While Michael Corleone wants to keep their business a secret, Tony Montana is unafraid of flaunting his wealth. As Drake once famously said, “started from the bottom, now we’re here.” That’s the biggest draw of Scarface and why so many people idolize this figure. It’s not because people dream of becoming a Miami drug kingpin. Instead, people idolize the self-made story that Montana goes through. You get to love his fearless attitude and the charisma that Montana exudes. That’s a testament to Pacino’s performance. You see all of the despicable things that he does, but you bypass all that because you gravitate towards his character.

Steven Bauer is also another standout in the entire film. His storyline with Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio is a lovely and tragic one. He’s the only man in the entire film that you can sympathize with. He may be a part of the game, but he’s not necessarily a bad guy. That, like Pacino, can be attributed to Steven Bauer’s performance.

The level of violence will be a drawback to those sensitive to incredibly bloody films. It’s no wonder that the film was given an X-rating several times. Yet the level of violence and exploitation is warranted for the kind of violent and dangerous life. The film doesn’t sugarcoat it at all and that can be attributed to director Brian de Palma and writer Oliver Stone, two directors who have had their fair share of fights against the MPAA. There are times when the violence may get to be too much but other times it serves the storyline.

Overall, Scarface is a fantastic character drama about the rise and fall of a Miami drug lord. Tony Montana is a character that’s part of the pantheon of legendary Hollywood characters. Sure, the film is super violent but it’s a part of the life of being a drug kingpin. After all, without Scarface, we won’t have Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.

Movie Rating: 4/5 atoms

Scarface (1932)

Scarface (1932)
Not a ton of people know this, but Brian de Palma’s Scarface is a remake of the 1932 gangster film of the same name. Although the remake came 51-years after the original, one would think that the storylines would be different because of the differences in society. However, there are a lot of similarities between de Palma’s film and this one. The biggest difference is that the ‘32 version, Tony is Italian instead of Cuban. Of course, if they made Tony Montana Italian in de Palma’s film, there would be endless comparisons to Pacino’s other gangster film, The Godfather.

Yet the “granddaddy of all gangster films” is a unique look at what gangster life was like back in the day when Al Capone was still alive. It’s like a first-hand account of what that life was like back then. The film wouldn’t be what it is today without the charismatic performance by Paul Muni. His performance is the only performance with a sense of personality in the entire film.

Unfortunately, the film is a sign of the times though. For one thing, the film doesn’t flow as well as modern-day films do. This feels more like a documentary style of editing than a Hollywood film. Not to mention, there is no character development at all for any of the characters. Of course, films were shorter back then so filmmakers had to get their point across in a quicker manner.

Despite all of that, the film is also very violent (for the time). Much like the remake decades later, the film had to undergo so many editing changes to make it past the censorship board. Because of all the gunfire in the film, you can see why the censorship board denied the film’s release several times. But if it wasn’t for producer Howard Hughes (yes, that Howard Hughes) the film would never have been released.

Overall, the original Scarface is a unique look at the Prohibition gangsters of the time. Unfortunately, it’s also a product of the times as well. Unlike other classics of the time, the original film doesn’t have the qualities that make it an endearing classic. Nevertheless, it’s nice to see where the inspiration came from for Brian de Palma’s 1983 classic. Sadly, that’s all that the original is good for…

Movie Rating: 2.5/5 atoms

Video

Scarface - Al Pacino
Scarface (1983)
Scarface hits Ultra HD Blu-ray with an HDR transfer and a 2.35:1 aspect ratio. There’s a great overall brightness to the picture. You can see it in the sweat of the actors where you can see it glisten and pop off the screen. Also, the black levels are a deep black with zero loss of details in the shadows. With the vibrant colors of Miami in the 80s, the colors are rich and vivid. However, the colors never really pop off the screen nor do they look dull neither. The details are crisp but there is some softness around the edges. At the same time, there is some noticeable film grain. Overall, this is awesome video quality.

Video Rating: 5/5 atoms

Scarface (1932)
Scarface hits Blu-ray with a 1080p MPEG-AVC with a 1.35:1 aspect ratio. There is an overall high picture contrast that has stark blacks and whites. For a black and white film, there is not much in terms of gradual grayscale. The bright areas are white across the board and the shadows are a deep black. Also, there is a softness in the image for the majority of the film. At the same time, some scenes are out of focus which highlights the soft picture. It’s unknown whether or not the rest of the slightly blurry images are because of the source film or from the film transfer itself. The film grain is also really heavy as well. It’s not a fine grain like most classic films, this is a harsh grain instead. Overall. this is pretty poor video quality.

Video Rating: 2.5/5 atoms

Audio

Scarface - Al Pacino and Steven Bauer
Scarface (1983)
Scarface hits Ultra HD Blu-ray with a DTS:X and a core 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track. This review will reflect Scarface‘s Dolby Atmos track. There is a great amount of immersion with the DTS:X mix. Since this is a character drama, there’s not a ton of dynamic panning of sound effects or overhead effects. However, it does happen when a scene calls for it. Nevertheless, the mix is very playful in the way the sound effects are accurately placed in the soundstage. More specifically, all of the gunfire in the film.

In terms of the atmospheric effects, they are distinct and immerses you in a scene. Right from the get-go, you can hear Giorgio Moroder’s electronic score layered nicely across the soundstage. Not to mention, his massively 80s score fills up the soundstage. Unfortunately, the score does drown out some of the clear dialogue. Overall, this is an immersive audio mix.

Audio Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

Scarface (1932)
Scarface hits Blu-ray with a 2.0 DTS Mono Audio track. Much like the video, the audio is of poor quality as well. All of the audio sounds like a low-fidelity mix. The dialogue doesn’t sound crisp since you can hear how hollow the audio is. However, it does have a sense of nostalgia since most black and white films sound just like this. Also, when there is music in the film, it sounds hollow and clipped. Overall, this is poor audio quality.

Audio Rating: 2.5/5 atoms

Special Features

Scarface - Michelle Pfeiffer and Al Pacino
Scarface (1983)

Scarface‘s Ultra HD Blu-ray disc has the Scarface: 35th Anniversary Reunion featurette on it. However, you can find the rest of the legacy special features on the regular 1080p Blu-ray disc:

  • Scarface: 35th Anniversary Reunion
  • The Scarface Phenomenon
    • Say Hello to the Bad Guy!
    • Pushing the Limit
    • The World & Everybody In It
  • The World of Tony Montana
  • The Rebirth
  • The Acting
  • The Creating
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Scarface: The TV Version
  • The Making of Scarface: The Video Game

The 35th-anniversary reunion is a practically a 27-minute recording of a post-screening Q&A. The Q&A has a lot of first-account stories from the people themselves about some of the most talked-about subjects of the film over the years.

“Scarface Phenomenon” is a feature that has various people giving their analysis of Scarface or how much they love for the film. “Rebirth”, “Acting”, and “Creating” are the Blu-ray releases’ behind-the-scenes featurettes. There’s a lot of stories and information that gets divulged in these featurettes. The deleted scenes seemingly go through all of the scenes cut from the film. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of scenes to go through and none of them are interesting to watch.

“The World of Tony Montana” is a very dated featurette that focuses on the world of drug dealers in Miami during the 80s. Law enforcement talks about the history of the drug trade while various critics talk about the film itself. If you can get past the skateboard visuals, you may learn something from the drug trade from the law enforcement speakers. “The TV Version” doesn’t necessarily show the entire film in its TV format, but it does give you an idea of how much they had to change to shows the film on TV. Spoiler alert: it’s a lot.

Special Features Rating: 3.5/5 atoms

Scarface (1932)

Scarface‘s Blu-ray disc has the following any special features on it:

  • Original Theatrical Version
  • Alternate Censored Version
  • Introduction by Turner Classic Movies Host and Film Historian Robert Osborne
  • Alternate Ending

The introduction may seem like a useless feature but it does include some interesting tidbits about the history of the film. More specifically, information about why there’s a censored and “uncensored” version. It’s a good intro for those of us who have not seen the 1932 Scarface. The alternate ending also is not as good as the “uncensored” theatrical version. The censored ending was made to appease the censorship board, so everything feels tacked together.

Special Features Rating: 1/5 atoms

Extras

Scarface Vinyl Statue

The figure that comes with “The World is Yours” Collector’s Edition accurately recreates the centerpiece statue within Tony Montana’s mansion. The figure has some weight to it as it weighs around a pound, so you know it won’t tip over easily. You can use it as a paperweight or use it as a centerpiece of your Blu-ray collection. At the same time, the figure is made of vinyl, so it does feel a bit cheap but it won’t break easily either. Overall, the figure stands 10″ tall and 4 1/8″ wide so you’re getting your money’s worth in terms of size and quality.

Scarface Vinyl Statue

Extras Rating: 4/5 atoms


Overall, Brian de Palma’s Scarface is a gritty and incredibly violent character drama that shows the rise and fall of a drug lord. The characters and dialogue are all memorable as well. You just can’t say the same thing about the original 1932 film. The video and audio quality for de Palma’s film are fantastic, but once again, you can’t say the same thing about the 1932 original. It’s just a little bit sad that we don’t get any new featurettes in any of these releases.

Overall Scarface (1983) Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

Overall Scarface (1932) Rating: 2/5 atoms

This Blu-ray was reviewed using a retail/advance copy/unit provided by Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.

The post Scarface: The World is Yours Collector’s Edition – 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review appeared first on Nerd Reactor.





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