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PHOTOGRAPHY

DELICATESSEN

DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 100 minutes, audio commentary, featurette, the archives of Jean-Pierre Jenuet, theatrial trailer and teasers

STUDIO: Miramax

RELEASE DATE: 5-2-2006

Jean-Pierre Jeunet didn't really spark with me until I saw the wonderful fantasy comedy AMELIE. I thought CITY OF LOST CHILDREN was OK (but maybe I should give it another look later this year) and thought the first half of ALIEN RESURRECTION was great. Now I have seen DELICATESSEN, a film that Jeunet made before all of those films I mentioned above. It is a dark comedy with shades of Terry Gilliam and what if you made an old Hollywood comedy except with cannibals and in a post-apocalyptic world. The bed spring scenes are the funniest bits of this gem. You could see the beginnings of a French master who create his best film AMELIE years later.

A down on his luck clown moves into a building unaware the butcher intends of serving him up as a meaty meal to the residents living in the building. Julie, the butcher's daughter, goes to extreme lengths to try and save this clown she has fallen in love with even going down below to the sewers to make a deal with the Troglodistes to save the clown. The comedy is even evident in some of the darkest scenes. Dominique Pinon is excellent as the ex-clown. I love his performance in this film better than the great job he did in AMELIE as one of the customers in the cafe where Amelie works. DELICATESSEN is a film to watch if you love AMELIE and A VERY LONG ENGAGEMENT.

VIDEO: 1.85:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)

Fantastic transfer. Great image detail.

AUDIO: French 2.0 Dolby Digital Surround

Subtitles: English, Spanish (extras only have English subs)

No probelems with the audio.

SPECIAL FEATURES: The extras are great even if they're not as extensive as extras on the AMELIE and A VERY LONG ENGAGEMENT DVDs.

The Archives of Jean-Pierre Jeunet shows screen tests and rehearsal footage while the theatrical trailer and teasers are downright funny (and great). Fine Cooked Meats: A Nod To Delicatessen is a behind-the-scenes look at the film between takes and when filming it. Even if it is 10 1/2 minutes long and shows some of the tricks they used in filming a few scenes, the featurette could have been edited down or benefited from including interviews with cast and crew. The best extra is the audio commentary for the movie with Director Jean-Pierre Jeunet as he goes into detail about the film's making from start to finish. Definitely worth a listen as you hear him talk about the difficulties in filming and editing some scenes together.

FINAL ANALYSIS: If you loved AMELIE and A VERY LONG ENGAGEMENT, you have no excuse in not checking out DELICATESSEN. It is a film that is finally and luckily out on DVD.

this review is (c)5-1-2006 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission (except for excerpts and a link to the review). Look for additional content at http://enterlinemedia.livejournal.com and send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com