Sound of Music" on DVD
Fox's Five Star Classic
The Sound of Music
is a wonderful movie, a five Oscar-winner (including "Best Picture") that
has finally made the transition to DVD. And what a transition it is!
Part of 20th Century
Fox's "Five Star Classic" series, it's a two disc extravaganza that not
only includes a THX mastered widescreen version of the film, but enough
extras to keep "Music" lovers happy.
The film itself is
well known. Directed by Robert Wise and starring Julie Andrews and Christopher
Plummer, it tells the song-filled tale of would-be nun Maria (Andrews)
who's sent to be governess for Captain von Trapp's (Plummer) seven children.
Maria's just the latest
in a long line of governesses for the Captain's kids, but it turns out
she's just what the doctor ordered. Her sunny disposition, love of music,
and strength of character quickly breaks down the barriers between herself
and the kids - and Captain von Trapp and life in general.
The Captain falls
in love with Maria and they marry, only to have their new family life
threatened by the rise of Nazi Germany and its takeover of von Trapp's
Speaking of "beloved
Austria," this movie was filmed on location, and that was a wonderful
decision by the producers. Austria is gorgeous and the locations enhance
the beauty of the overall film, as well as lending a feeling of authenticity.
The Rogers and Hammerstein
musical is a masterpiece, with wonderful songs performed wonderfully.
Andrews' singing is effortless and she plays the part of Maria with guts,
vulnerability, and bravado (perhaps a strange combination, but she pulls
it off). Plummer is also good as the crusty Captain, a shattered man who,
thanks to Maria, finds reason to sing and to love again.
The widescreen THX
picture is superb, as is the Dolby Digital 4.1 audio. We'd have liked
to seen those 4.1 audio channels augmented by a center front channel,
because sometimes some onscreen characters' voices were coming from the
left or right speaker, but on the whole that's a pretty minor criticism
for a marvelous video adaptation that undoubtedly chose to remain true
to the original soundtrack.
Disc one also includes
a full length running commentary from director Robert Wise as well as
a DVD-ROM link to the movie's official Web site.
Disc two features
a series of documentaries, including a 1965 look at the film and at Salzburg
starring 'the oldest daughter,' and a full length one ("The Sound of music:
From Fact to Phenomenon"). There's also an audio supplement from screenwriter
Ernest Lehman, interviews with Julie Andrews and Robert Wise, DVD-ROM
games, storyboards, sketches, production stills, trailers, and radio/TV
There's even a booklet
essay inside the box.
It's a complete package
that for the first time does "video justice" to this timeless classic.
The Sound of Music,
from 20th Century Fox Home Video
175 minutes, Widescreen (2.2:1), Dolby Digital 4.1
Starring Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer, Richard Haydn, Peggy Wood,
Executive Producer Saul Chaplin
Written by Ernest Lehman, Directed by Robert Wise
Tell us at TechnoFile what YOU think