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Mainstream - The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly Blu-ray

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The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
Clint Eastwood, Eli Wallach, Lee Van Cleef
Directed by Sergio Leone
Widescreen 2:35:1
Originally released 1966
Fox Home Entertainment 2009
178 minutes.

The question with Blu-ray is always is it worth the money? In this case abso-bloody-lutely. The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly Blu-ray finally shows this Sergio Leone / Clint Eastwood western classic at its very best. The movie was originally restored and restored to its original non-American version length for a 2 DVD Collector’s Edition. The image is crisp, sharp, perfect, so Sergio Leone’s famed longshots are shown in all their glory while his close-ups really pop out. A good Blu-ray gives you a 3-D feel and this is the case for The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

Purists who complained about the DVD version about the sound no longer being mono will be happy to learn it is now an option. The replaced gunshot sfx are it seems still there. Yes, a short restored scene features noticeably older voices for Blondie (Eastwood) and Tuco (Wallach) but there you go.

Third in what has become known as Sergio Leone’s spaghetti western trilogy with A Fistfull of Dollars and For A Few Dollars More, The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly is the story of three men (Eastwood, Wallach, and Van Cleef) competing to recover a stolen military cashbox with lots of money inside while the Civil War is raging.

This being a Leone western, the film has a complex story and characters. You really have to trust the director for a while as the characters develop and the story builds. Of course, if you like westerns to begin with this is really easy.

Although the movie stars Eastwood it really belongs to Wallach and his Tuco character. Granted, Wallach is talented but you have to admit Tuco is the only fully formed character here.

Special features on The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly Blu-ray are the same as the 2 DVD Collector’s edition: Commentary track by film historian Leonard Shickel; Commentary track by Christopher Frayling; Leone’s West, a 20-minute making of; The Leone Style; The Man Who Lost The Civil War on General Sibley’s campaign in Texas (the backdrop story for this movie); Reconstructing The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly; a sound-only bit on Ennio Morricone, and deleted scenes.

There are 3 Easter Eggs on this Blu-ray. One is by pressing the up arrow when selecting play. I could not be bothered hunting long enough for the other two.

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