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DVD Talk review of "Count of Monte Cristo"

Old 12-07-05, 12:05 PM
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DVD Talk review of "Count of Monte Cristo"

Hey Svet,

Although not indicated in your review, I assume this is the complete 400 min. version?

All in all, I agree with your review. This is probably the best adaptation of the Dumas novel. Fantastic acting and great production values. In this case however, best does not equal most faithful because there are a few problems, especially the "happy" ending which goes against the spirit of the book. Also, the Edmond Dantes character is a bit too tame. This is afterall a revenge tale and you don't feel all the rage the character is supposed to have. But this is more the script's fault than Depardieu's fault although when he escapes from Chateau d'If, you'd think he'd been fed on Big Macs and took the time to shave. In that sense, the most faithful adaptation is probably Robert Vernay's 1953 adaptation (the first in color) where Jean Marais's excellent portrayal of Dantes was closer to the book.

But I'm just being pickey because this is a fantastic mini-series.
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Old 12-07-05, 01:46 PM
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Hello eXcentris:

Well, actually you make very good points. Depardieu clearly struggled with...well, weight!! In fact since 1986 he has been getting bigger and bigger. And since he got involved with the wine company he now directs...the results are rather scarry.

Yes, it is the complete series...I think I mentioned that it is 7 hours. And you are correct about the ending being a bit different than the book. With this said...did you know that there are actually two versions of the 1953 adaptation? The IMDB does not indicate it but there is a completely different Italian take on it. I have been trying to find it somewhere and even spoke with a guy that used to work for the TV archive at RAI in Milan (I think)...looks like the Italians re-cut evrything and even used Italian dubbing for the entire dialog. According to my research there is also completely different footage (and we are not talking about 20 min. much more than that)...but I have not been able to vind it on VHS/DVD.

Either way, thank you for the comments, and perhaps since the original Jean Marais' Fanfan la Tulipe is now out perhaps we would see a remastered disc of his Le Comte de Monte Cristo as well....

Ciao,
Pro-B
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Old 12-07-05, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by pro-bassoonist
Yes, it is the complete series...I think I mentioned that it is 7 hours.
After further review, you did mention it. Sorry, missed it the 1st time.

And you are correct about the ending being a bit different than the book. With this said...did you know that there are actually two versions of the 1953 adaptation? The IMDB does not indicate it but there is a completely different Italian take on it. I have been trying to find it somewhere and even spoke with a guy that used to work for the TV archive at RAI in Milan (I think)...looks like the Italians re-cut evrything and even used Italian dubbing for the entire dialog. According to my research there is also completely different footage (and we are not talking about 20 min. much more than that)...but I have not been able to vind it on VHS/DVD.


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Hmmm, never heard of it. Are you sure you're not referring to the 1943 version, also by Robert Vernay? The Italian version even substitutes some of the actors.
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Old 12-07-05, 02:51 PM
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Originally Posted by eXcentris
Hmmm, never heard of it. Are you sure you're not referring to the 1943 version, also by Robert Vernay? The Italian version even substitutes some of the actors.
Yes, possitive...I found out about it when I was doing some cataloging for the film library at our university. There was a reference number for a catalog order...and I am fairly certain this has nothing to do with the 1943 version. To be honest I can not even comment on it as I have never seen it.

Have you seen it (1943)?

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Old 12-07-05, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by pro-bassoonist
Yes, possitive...I found out about it when I was doing some cataloging for the film library at our university. There was a reference number for a catalog order...and I am fairly certain this has nothing to do with the 1943 version. To be honest I can not even comment on it as I have never seen it.
Ok thanks for the info.

Have you seen it (1943)?
Yes but on television ages ago. It was the French version (about 3 hours) which was shown in two parts. I don't honestly remember much about it.
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Old 12-08-05, 08:08 AM
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I enjoyed this series BUT - couldn't they have done a better job in Depardieu's disguises? If the characters couldn't tell who it was they must have been blind. (I especially liked the disguise with the bigger nose!) This was a major distraction for me while viewing the otherwise top class film.
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Old 12-08-05, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by bdots48
I enjoyed this series BUT - couldn't they have done a better job in Depardieu's disguises? If the characters couldn't tell who it was they must have been blind. (I especially liked the disguise with the bigger nose!) This was a major distraction for me while viewing the otherwise top class film.

That is very good point as well, but I think part of the issue stems from the fact that the viewer spends very little time with the young Dantes...which I think is one of the major flaws in these series.

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