Being There (Blu-Ray)

Being There is a 1979 film; it was originally interpreted and created based on a work earlier in the decade by author Jerzy Kosinski. Chance The Gardiner (SellerS) is an individual that, for the entirety of eir life, has been charged with tending the garden of a well-to-do individual. When ey is put out onto the street, ey is hit by a car. The individual that hit Chance, Ben Rand (played by Melvyn Douglas), pus Chance up; the resulting interactions and mistakes and missteps by Chance turn ey and Rand’s relationship into something considerably larger than the sum of its parts. The film itself is humerous, touching, and intricate in all its layers; it holds up well, despite it being focused around an America that is thirty years out from the current.

Despite the fact that the film celebrates its 30th anniversary this year, Warner Brothers has taken that extra step and put enough extra material on here to really make this Blu-Ray purchase well worth it. First off, the footage – the film itself – is as sharp as it was when it first hit movie theaters, with audio done up perfectly, with stereo and mono mixes available. This means that there has been a reunion of sorts of the original cast and crew from the film, captured in the (brand spanking) new featurette Memories From Being There. Of particular note to fans of the movie would have to be the “Two Recently Discovered Scenes” section of the Blu-Ray.

I had a (much) lder VHS copy of the tape before receiving this Blu-Ray edition, so these scenes were pretty eye-opening, creating a whole different dynamic for the movie. The alternate ending is similarly strong in providing another way to interpret the film, while the “Gag Reel” is something that will allow viewers to see a more personable side to Peters Sells, Shirley MacLaine, and a number of other members of the cast that were intimately associated with Being There. If you have missed the film up to this point, or just want to get a great transfer of Being There, this Blu-Ray edition should be seen as the end-all, be-all of versions. Purchase it today.

Rating: 9.1/10

Being There (Blu-Ray) / 2009 Warner Bros / 130 Minutes / /

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