Kino Lorber Studio Classics: Hannibal

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flyonthewall2983
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Hannibal (Ridley Scott, 2001)

#1 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Sat Jun 02, 2007 8:05 pm

I hope this thread sparks a more serious discussion of the film, but there's one thing about the film (which I've just seen recently) that's been sticking out in my mind. Doesn't Hannibal look like Bob Newhart when he's showing the paintings on the projector?
Last edited by flyonthewall2983 on Fri Jun 15, 2007 11:57 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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#2 Post by Polybius » Sun Jun 03, 2007 12:52 am

"Um, yes, Mrs. Webb...that is a Titian. N-no, I don't think I'm going to have to disembowel you, at least not just yet."

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#3 Post by colinr0380 » Thu Jun 07, 2007 10:30 am

Polybius wrote:
colinr0380 wrote:The recent post about the Hannibal film also reminded me that Julianne Moore did the 'reinventing a role from a classic earlier film' thing twice. I actually think she did an excellent job in that later role
Yes, she did. She made it her own.
(while at the same time feel that Jodie Foster was right to not want to play 'her' Clarice Starling in Hannibal).
I agree in the abstract, but I've always felt, and maybe this is just a faulty perception on my part, that she was at least a bit churlish about it. Her refusals to discuss the matter in anything other than a pro forma fashion strike me as less of her legendary willfullness and more as pettiness, which is regrettable from someone of her talent.
I try not to follow the behind the scenes stuff, at least before the film is made and I've had a chance to see it, but I'd guess that Foster realised it wasn't something for her as soon as she read the book or got sent the script, even if the final film toned down the book a lot! Perhaps the refusal to even discuss the role was just a way of saying no without having to say 'no'!

For whatever reason it was made I think it was a good decision all round. I don't think it would have benefited either Foster or the reputation of Silence of the Lambs for her to have played Clarice in Hannibal, and by bowing out it let the film go its own way and go in a new direction it allowed the film to truly become Lecter's story, as while Clarice is an important character in Hannibal she is on the sidelines for most of the time. That is where I think Julianne Moore's performance really came into its own, as she was able to keep the character going in the relatively short and uninteresting procedural scenes before we return to Hannibal in Italy - and then she also shows that she can more than hold her own against Hopkin's performance in the final scene.

That does an interesting thing, as that last scene allows Clarice to wrest control of the film back from the psychopath after the audience has spent most of the rest of the film enjoying being with Lecter more - something she absolutely failed to do in the book!

I have a feeling that it would have been more devastating for an audience to see Foster's Clarice in that early section where she is humiliated and marginalised - so much so that I don't think people would have connected with Lecter's story so strongly. They might have wanted to see how Foster would get back on top. The change of actress really helps to divorce us from Clarice for a long time until we are won back the hard way by Moore's excellent performance.

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#4 Post by Matt » Thu Jun 07, 2007 10:42 am

I've always felt the opposite about Julianne Moore's performance in this. It always seemed to me that everyone else in the film thought they were making an operatic Grand Guignol black comedy, but Moore played it straight. For me, she's the worst thing about the film.

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#5 Post by colinr0380 » Thu Jun 07, 2007 11:19 am

I think that goes back to my thoughts about Psycho and the importance of a straight man (or woman) to anchor the craziness! I don't think it would have been half as good if Gary Oldman, Ray Liotta or Anthony Hopkins hadn't had that role to play against, and everything would have tipped over the edge if Clarice had accepted Hannibal's offer of dinner in the end!

I agree though that this was probably another big reason why Foster's Clarice was wrong for Hannibal, it would have been even more gratingly obvious that Hannibal was a completely different film from Silence in tone.

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#6 Post by Polybius » Fri Jun 08, 2007 5:59 am

I'm glad to see you transplanted this offshoot from the other thread. It probably more properly belongs here.
colinr0380 wrote: For whatever reason it was made I think it was a good decision all round. I don't think it would have benefited either Foster or the reputation of Silence of the Lambs for her to have played Clarice in Hannibal, and by bowing out it let the film go its own way and go in a new direction it allowed the film to truly become Lecter's story, as while Clarice is an important character in Hannibal she is on the sidelines for most of the time. That is where I think Julianne Moore's performance really came into its own, as she was able to keep the character going in the relatively short and uninteresting procedural scenes before we return to Hannibal in Italy - and then she also shows that she can more than hold her own against Hopkin's performance in the final scene.
Agreed. I have no problem with her making the aesthetic decision to opt out of this, but I still feel there was a public undercurrent of disapproval that came from her that was ultimately unfair to Julianne and the rest of the cast.

Agnosticism and disinterest about the project would have been fine, but her attitude seemed to slide over into the area of open hostility, at least to me.

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#7 Post by exte » Fri Jun 08, 2007 11:49 am

It's only this year, my 27th, that I've heard the term "procedural" used, and used everywhere, as in "procedural scenes" or "procedural dramas". Am I the only one, or was I just asleep? I mean, I've never really heard it used to describe Silence of the Lambs, though when I think of it, they have perhaps the best procedural scenes I've ever seen. For example, I love the sound of the camera's flash re-energizing, the application under Foster's nose, and the sound of the trapped air being released from the girl's body... But am I the only one here?

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#8 Post by colinr0380 » Fri Jun 08, 2007 12:20 pm

And don't forget Manhunter, with probably the best of those kinds of 'procedural scenes' of gathering evidence and drawing conclusions. I also have a soft spot for the first half of Candyman for the same reasons.

Perhaps it feels more tired at the moment because the style has been milked to death by television over the years from any number of cop shows to The X Files to 24 to Law and Order and CSI (I haven't seen any of the various CSI series, but from what I've heard it is all that kind of thing, and doesn't one even have William Petersen in?)

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#9 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Fri Jun 08, 2007 12:27 pm

Yup.

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#10 Post by Polybius » Sat Jun 09, 2007 1:36 am

Of late, any time you see that term in print, it's likely going to be pejorative. The main complaint about the TV shows that colinr0308 mentions is that they're dry and stale and concentrate mostly on the elements that drive the plot along, with almost no real character development. (That's particularly true about the execrable 24.)

I would add that Law & Order: SVU largely avoids those pitfalls and is a rather compelling show, but most of the rest fall under that rubric.

Silence and Manhunter have those elements, and they lend a nice degree of verisimilitude to the films, but they aren't the driving force of them, so I don't think I would trot that term out, myself.

And, no...I hadn't heard or read the word in that context before the last couple of years, either.

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#11 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Sat Jun 09, 2007 7:37 am

The Vegas CSI, from what I've seen lately, also has that. My opinion though.

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#12 Post by colinr0380 » Sat Jun 09, 2007 11:42 am

Polybius wrote:Of late, any time you see that term in print, it's likely going to be pejorative. The main complaint about the TV shows that colinr0308 mentions is that they're dry and stale and concentrate mostly on the elements that drive the plot along, with almost no real character development. (That's particularly true about the execrable 24.)

I would add that Law & Order: SVU largely avoids those pitfalls and is a rather compelling show, but most of the rest fall under that rubric.

Silence and Manhunter have those elements, and they lend a nice degree of verisimilitude to the films, but they aren't the driving force of them, so I don't think I would trot that term out, myself.

And, no...I hadn't heard or read the word in that context before the last couple of years, either.
That's really the big difference. Some pieces of work treat procedural scenes as the boring legwork that needs to be done in between getting back to the important stuff of love affairs and emotional dramas (yawn!), or catching the bad guy, while (my favourite examples!) Manhunter and Candyman make the legwork a fascinating and exciting part of the emotional drama - there is very little that can compare to the revelation sequence in Will Graham's hotel room in most crime of the week shows, perhaps because it is just the crime of this week. However I think there is also something about the involvement with the material created in the audience by the director and actor that puts across the excitement and exhillaration of discovery - I can't watch Red Dragon because the same basic material in the procedural scenes just doesn't connect with me as strongly, and keeps making me wish I was watching the earlier film (that and the flash cuts of violence and nudity with piercing screams over the soundtrack that I can't stand in a film, and which Manhunter treated much more discreetly, and in a much more disturbing fashion!)

Taking it back to Hannibal, I think these scenes are purposefully played down and play much less interestingly because both the book and the film has made a break from the detective to Lecter himself, perhaps one of the most daring parts of the work considering this was the foundation of the success of the previous books and films.

Perhaps this was an attempt by Thomas Harris to distance himself from the success of the films and maybe even kill the series off by taking it into such grand guignol territory. I remember reading an article somewhere that said that Harris didn't watch any of the films made of his novels because he didn't want his vision of the characters to be tainted by the way in which they were interpreted on screen, but the direction Hannibal takes might suggest he wasn't able to close himself off from the acclaim that Silence of the Lambs received and some of the more shocking elements of the novel were in reaction to that success. This is pure speculation on my part, but it might suggest a reason for Jodie Foster's more curt than expected response - perhaps she felt the direction that Harris took Clarice Starling in was a backlash response to the way she played the character in Silence of the Lambs?

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#13 Post by Polybius » Sun Jun 10, 2007 2:32 am

I think that's probably true, on both ends, but in Foster's case, I think it went past distaste for Harris' actions over into active disparagement of the film and (more importantly, to me) the people involved with it, which seemed unprofessional, especially for her.

I know this seems like I'm nursing a deep grudge, but I'm not. It's just something I felt at the time and (I admit), it's colored my feelings about her, to at least a slight degreee, since then.

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#14 Post by Highway 61 » Sun Jun 10, 2007 3:14 am

In my mind, Foster can be as indignant as she wants about the film and the people who made it. Hannibal was nothing but a paycheck for everyone involved, unlike The Silence of the Lambs, which was a genuine and successful attempt at an adult thriller. I can understand why Foster wouldn't want her accomplishments in the first film to be tarnished by its low-brow, slasher sequels. Admittedly, however, Hannibal has a tongue-in-cheek understanding of itself as an unneeded sequel that makes it at least worth a viewing.

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#15 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Fri Jun 15, 2007 11:52 pm

In thinking about why I enjoyed the film, I actually thought about something John McTiernan said about the two primary reasons why he rejected the first couple versions of Die Hard that he was given. I'm paraphrasing from his DVD commentary track, but the first being that the John McClane character was written more in the style of a latter-day Dirty Harry 80's action cop. And the second being that a terrorist film, by definition, has no sense of joy in it.

It was only when McClane was re-written as a more human character with a deeply flawed sense of self-confidence, and that the terrorists were actually using the hostage situation as a front for a heist, that McTiernan wanted to do the film.

Now, in terms of Hannibal I see some similarities in terms of how I enjoyed the film. Serial killer films also, by definition, have no sense of joy in them. In the ones I've seen, the killers usually have pretty grim motives ranging from whacked-out religious beliefs to fucked-up childhoods. Thus, it makes the whole film usually a dark experience. As it should, since it deals with a dark experience many families have had to deal with.

That said, I really don't see how Hannibal would fit in this category. Of course, Lector is a serial killer. But when you think about it, out of everyone he kills in the film, who deserves it the least (other than possibly Krendler)? His killings are done, as strange as it is to say it, in self-defense and self-preservation. So I guess you could say that the joy in this film comes from watching Lector kill, but for reasons in the film that are partly, if not totally justified.

I must make a confession that I've only seen about half of Silence of the Lambs, and wasn't greatly impressed with it. Then again, I can't think of any other film that I personally like that's won that many Oscars. I recently saw Manhunter complete and unedited for the first time and really liked it. But I'm at the point now where I'd even put Hannibal above that as my favorite Lecter film. And definitely above Red Dragon, which any time I certain scenes from it, I think of how much better Michael Mann did it than Ratner.

Anyway, those are my two quarters about the film. Take with a grain of salt if you must, but it's just my opinion.

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#16 Post by Polybius » Sat Jun 16, 2007 2:01 am

The fact that most of his victims in Hannibal, to a greater or lesser degree, deserved it, was a major criticism of the sequel. The charge was that it had, in fact, gotten away from Silence's portrait of him as a cold blooded killer of the worst sort.

While there is some legitimacy to that (the nurse he attacked some time before, which we see on the surveillance tape and the two prison guards in Tennessee are just doing their jobs and happen to get in his way are people we do, and should, sympathize with), there were also many seeds of that attitude planted in Silence, as well. I think most people knew quite well that Dr. Chilton was in for a truly grisly last few hours on Earth as the credits rolled. And most people responded to his closing line to Starling on the phone with at least a chuckle.

The charge against Hannibal is, usually, that Lecter becomes something of a vigilante, some combo of Harry Callahan and Bugs Bunny, firing off one liners as he kills people who none of us have any sympathy for (Mason Verger, the child molester; the crooked, lecherous and slightly stupid Krendler; the greedy Pazzi.)

In contrast, he notably spares the lovely Allegra, even after threatening her to Pazzi, and he's nice to the little kid on the plane. This has led to the idea that we're being steered toward "rooting" for him and that it's something of an immoral inversion of what we're supposed to be doing.

Personally, I've always seen Lecter as kind of a Nietzschean. He's not out to spread evil over the world, or get even with anyone (I haven't seen Hannibal Rising, so I may have to rethink that. Assuming I don't decide to just consider that film apocryphal...) He's simply going to do whatever he wants to do, even if this includes occasionaly eating people, and no external force in the world or anything beyond it (his baiting Starling early in the novel version of Silence about God's indifference to, and seeming delight in, human suffering, comes to mind) will stop him.

Thus, he likes Starling, so he doesn't kill her, even though she repeatedly gets in his way. He likes Barney, the guard from Chilton's asylum, because he always treated him fairly. He dislikes Verger, because of a lot of factors, including but not limited to his being a pederast, so he turns him into something that looks like Pogo Possum.

It's all about being the master of his environment with him and once you see that, you understand his actions better and while you may not exactly sympathize with his crimes, you don't sit there eaten up with rage at his dastardly deeds, like he's Ming the Merciless, as some people seem to expect.

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#17 Post by colinr0380 » Sat Jun 16, 2007 12:29 pm

Polybius wrote:and he's nice to the little kid on the plane. This has led to the idea that we're being steered toward "rooting" for him and that it's something of an immoral inversion of what we're supposed to be doing.

....It's all about being the master of his environment with him and once you see that, you understand his actions better and while you may not exactly sympathize with his crimes, you don't sit there eaten up with rage at his dastardly deeds, like he's Ming the Merciless, as some people seem to expect.
I don't know about the kid on the plane - I thought he was a bit of a nosy brat which is what inspired Lecter to feed him the brain! It makes that iris in on his eye very funny, a final wink goodbye to the audience while doing something dastardly but which we sort of sickly approve of to match the ending of Silence of the Lambs!

I get the impression that he was very harsh on people who behaved disrespectfully or with poor manners. I don't think Lecter would kill people if they were ignorant but willing to learn or moved by great art (such as Allegra), but instead was far more affronted by people who used their positions to show their superiority over others (such as Krendler and Verger) or tried to bluff about their knowledge and acted in a hypocritical and deceitful manner (Renaldo, and their scenes together are some of the best in the film, crackling with tension as they are trying to work each other out!)

At the same time that doesn't prevent Lecter from teasing Clarice in Silence of the Lambs about coming from 'white trash'!

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#18 Post by Polybius » Sat Jun 16, 2007 10:16 pm

colinr0380 wrote:
Polybius wrote:and he's nice to the little kid on the plane. This has led to the idea that we're being steered toward "rooting" for him and that it's something of an immoral inversion of what we're supposed to be doing.

....It's all about being the master of his environment with him and once you see that, you understand his actions better and while you may not exactly sympathize with his crimes, you don't sit there eaten up with rage at his dastardly deeds, like he's Ming the Merciless, as some people seem to expect.
I don't know about the kid on the plane - I thought he was a bit of a nosy brat which is what inspired Lecter to feed him the brain! It makes that iris in on his eye very funny, a final wink goodbye to the audience while doing something dastardly but which we sort of sickly approve of to match the ending of Silence of the Lambs!

I hadn't really thought of it that way :D
I get the impression that he was very harsh on people who behaved disrespectfully or with poor manners. I don't think Lecter would kill people if they were ignorant but willing to learn or moved by great art (such as Allegra), but instead was far more affronted by people who used their positions to show their superiority over others (such as Krendler and Verger) or tried to bluff about their knowledge and acted in a hypocritical and deceitful manner (Renaldo, and their scenes together are some of the best in the film, crackling with tension as they are trying to work each other out!)
Exactly. To quote Starling, "He wouldn't come after me, he'd probably consider it rude."
At the same time that doesn't prevent Lecter from teasing Clarice in Silence of the Lambs about coming from 'white trash'!
Just putting her through her paces, to see if she was as good as Graham. If she had gotten defensive or evasive, she'd probably have eventually ended up inside some pita bread.

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#19 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Sun Jun 17, 2007 2:16 am

Just to note, Lecter really didn't kill Verger. He just egged the assistant into doing it.

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#20 Post by Darth Lavender » Mon Jun 18, 2007 1:36 am

I'm writing from a library computer, so I'll be kind of brief...

A few random thoughts on one of my favourite films series...

- 'Hannibal' is, to my thinking, the very definition of "less than the sum of it's parts"
The whole is not a classic by any definition, but there's so many individual elements in there (the Vide Cor Meum opera, the character of Hannibal, a lot of the cinematography, etc.) that certainly belongs in a genuine 10/10 great film.

- The ending, with the kid, I think works a *lot* better in the alternate cut. For those who haven't seen, in the alternate ending (on the DVD) Hannibal does not have to cut off his arm. Clarice rejects him (as in the theatrical cut,) Hannibal escapes and the scene with the kid is longer and slightly different in tone with Hannibal appearing far more sinister. Much as I like the arm bit, I thought the alternate ending offered a MUCH more satisfying conclusion to the film, with Hannibal, after briefly entertaining the possibility of 'goodness' (ie. Clarice) being rejected and confirming himself very definitely as evil with the concluding scene feeding the brains to the kid. (Given that there'll probably only be prequels to this series, one of Hannibal's major flaws is the lack of any kind of strong ending. It's practically a cliff-hanger)

- For the fellow wondering wether to see Hannibal Rising, that is a film that's very easy (and, even, necessary) to seperate from the rest of the trilogy. Aside from a performance that reminds me of my schoolday efforts at theatre (needless to say, I didn't get many lead roles) and looking absolutely nothing like Anthony Hopkins, the whole plot becomes very difficult to accept in the context of Silence Of The Lambs, etc. (I can almost accept the bit about him being a 'Count,' but a wanted fugitive who has killed several people already?)
Aside from a brief use of the Goldberg variations, this film has about as much of a connection to The Silence Of The Lambs as Saw III.

Well, my time on the computer is almost up and my internet won't be fixed for a few more days.

Ta ta,
~ L

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#21 Post by Polybius » Tue Jun 19, 2007 2:12 am

flyonthewall2983 wrote:Just to note, Lecter really didn't kill Verger. He just egged the assistant into doing it.
The always interesting Zeljko Ivanek. I was actually referring more to the original "Why don't you cut your face off?" incident that started Verger's vendetta. One of my favorite Oldman performances. That particular accent, (snotty North Carolina Piedmont pseudo-aristocrat), is a real mother. He nailed it.
Darth Lavender wrote:For those who haven't seen, in the alternate ending (on the DVD) Hannibal does not have to cut off his arm.
Every deleted scene on the 2 discer is really interesting and adds to the mix.
For the fellow wondering wether to see Hannibal Rising, that is a film that's very easy (and, even, necessary) to seperate from the rest of the trilogy.
About what I expected. Oh, well...I'm well experienced at mentally declaring films I don't like non-canonical, so this won't be a stretch for me.

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Re: Hannibal (Scott, 2001)

#22 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Mon Jul 20, 2015 5:32 pm

Very interesting to consider the film against the first half of the third season of the show. How it *coughs* cannibalizes some key moments worked quite well within the framework of the show, but I couldn't help thinking about it in a few key scenes
for the showShow
particularly Pazzi's death which was no less gruesome the second time around. And how it lead into the Clockwork Orange-inspired fight scene.

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Kino Lorber Studio Classics: Hannibal

#23 Post by dwk » Sat Feb 02, 2019 10:22 am

colinr0380 wrote:
Thu Jan 31, 2019 1:51 pm
I had not noted that before. Which are the two titles that Kino are going to release?
According to some posts at the Blu-ray.com forum, Kino plans to announce their fist UHD next week.

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Re: Kino Lorber Studio Classics Acquisitions

#24 Post by Kino Insider » Wed Feb 06, 2019 3:58 pm

Coming April 30th on 4KUHD and Blu-ray!

Hannibal (2001) with optional English subtitles
• Brand New 4K Restoration - HDR and SDR Color Graded by Cinematographer John Mathieson
• Audio Commentary by director Ridley Scott
• Breaking the Silence: Making-of Hannibal Doc - including rare footage and interviews (75 Minutes)
• Anatomy of a Shoot-Out: A Five-Angle Breakdown of the “Fish Market” Action Scene (48 Minutes)
• Ridleygrams: A Featurette on the Art of Storyboarding (8 Minutes)
• An Exploration of the Film’s Opening Title Design (8 Minutes)
• Over 33 Minutes of Deleted and Alternate Scenes with Optional Director Commentary
• Alternate Ending with Optional Director Commentary (6 Minutes)
• 19 TV Spots
• Theatrical Teaser
• Theatrical Trailer
• 5.1 Surround and 2.0 Stereo
• Limited O-card Slipcase

(2001) Color 131 Minutes 1.85:1 Rated R
The silence has been broken... Dark, absorbing and entertaining, this follow-up to The Silence of the Lambs is an audacious success. Screen legend Anthony Hopkins (Nixon) is perverse perfection in his return to the role of Dr. Hannibal Lecter, the sophisticated killer who comes out of hiding to draw FBI Special Agent Clarice Starling (Julianne Moore, Far from Heaven) into a high-stakes battle that will test her strength, cunning... and loyalty. Meanwhile, the good doctor’s only surviving victim plots a particularly nasty revenge. Drenched in baroque terror and hair-raising visuals, Hannibal is as compelling as it is shocking. Legendary filmmaker Ridley Scott (Alien, Blade Runner, The Martian) served up this smash-hit thriller from a screenplay by David Mamet (Glengarry Glen Ross) and Steven Zaillian (Schindler’s List), based on the bestselling novel by Thomas Harris (Red Dragon). Ray Liotta (Unforgettable), Giancarlo Giannini (Seven Beauties) and Gary Oldman (Darkest Hour) round out the delectable cast.
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Re: Kino Lorber Studio Classics Acquisitions

#25 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Wed Feb 06, 2019 4:15 pm

Will the special features take up a disc of their own, or on the same disc as the feature?

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