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The Wages Of Fear - Criterion Collection [Blu-ray] (Version française) [Import]


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Product Details

  • Actors: Yves Montand, Charles Vanel, Peter van Eyck, Véra Clouzot, Folco Lulli
  • Directors: Henri-Georges Clouzot
  • Format: Black & White, NTSC, Special Edition, Subtitled, Import
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region A/1
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Criterion
  • Release Date: April 21 2009
  • Run Time: 148 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001PYD0KM


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Robin Simmons on April 21 2009
Format: Blu-ray
Criterion's restored hi-def transfer of Henri-Georges Clouzot's controversial, visceral and prescient thriller still grabs the viewer by the throat for a breathless, nihilistic ride.

This iconic film of suspense and despair was deemed 'evil' by Time magazine during its 1955 US release. Based on the harrowing 1950 book by George Arnaud, it's a cautionary tale of the true blood toll of oil and greed.

Filmed in 1951 and first shown in France in 1952, 'The Wages of fear' (Le Salaire de la peur) is about four European men at the end of their ropes in a hell-hole of a South American village who accept a job from an American oil company to drive two trucks of unstable nitroglycerine along a treacherous mountain route to an oil fire.

Clouzot, who made less than a dozen films including the acclaimed 'Les Diaboliques' and 'Quai des orfevres' never flinches from his vision. Although the first half seems a bit unfocused and meandering as we get to know our characters, the squalid S.A. setting and the uncaring, greed-driven, business-as-usual of the American oil company, the movie literally jump starts when the four hapless men hit the road in their two trucks overloaded with nitro. We know these men. And we ride with them and their emotions. Yves Montand, Charles Vanel, Peter van Eyck and Antonio Centa are terrific as the frantic, fraught drivers.

There's a lot of post WW II existential angst in this tale and that's not surprising. After all, it is French and the ideas of Camus and Sartre permeate this film as they did the decade in which it was produced.

My only memory of this film was a washed out video tape copy with impossible to read subtitles and later a faded 16mm print in film school.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
I had waited for at least 30 years for a refurbished version of The Wages of Fear, and now I have it! The BluRay version is the best and latest technology, and I have the choice of watching it with subtitles or not. All the low-tech problems of the original have disappeared, leaving the movie in pristine condition, better than the original.
The price was excellent, the delivery quick, and I couldn't be happier.
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Format: DVD
"The Wages of Fear" is considered one of the truly great films. It not only delivers terrific suspense and excitement, it is also a rather telling comment on the human condition. Some drifters are trapped in a hot, bug-infested South American hell-hole. They are out of luck, out of money and seemingly doomed to remain where they are, fighting hunger, heat and each other. Suddenly, they are offered a small fortune to drive trucks through the jungle, across a mountain range to a destination 300 miles distant. The catch ? The trucks are loaded with nitroglycerine--one bump--one spark--one mistake--and the truck and any unfortunate humans on board are history.
Four men agree to drive two trucks, and their journey will have you biting your finger-nails down to your elbows ! All four actors are fine, with Yves Montand particularly memorable in the lead. I agree with the reviewer who notes that the first half hour of the film is slow, but it sets the mood. It's important to understand why these characters would volunteer for such a "mission impossible", even for a big payday.
The film has a chilling message about the lengths that people will go for money. I couldn't help but consider some of the "reality" television programs we see today like "Fear Factor". It's sad to see what indignities and dangers people will subject themselves to just to make a buck, and how easily they can be exploited.
The picture quality of the DVD is fine. I was surprised to find no extras, given that this is a Criterion release. An interview with one of our current, respected directors would have been a nice bonus. I'm sure that a film buff like Martin Scorsese would have some fascinating comments. Then again--I'm sure he's a busy guy !
Bottom line--a timeless masterpiece for serious film collectors.
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Format: DVD
Wages of fear is one of the milestones in all the cinema's story.
The lives of two men engaged in a mission that you qualify as no sense. And so that's precisely the most relevant point.
How far can the greed, the ambition generate such tension state when you accept the special condition of carrying this special delivery?
Montand an actor that grew up with la port de la nuit, years before makes an outstanding performance.
The film, far from being dated, it revalues with the years. Maybe this film is the masterpiece of Clouzot.
And it constitutes one of the eleven best french films of that ddecade, together with Rififi, Forbidden games, The four hundred blows, Elevator to the gallows, The amants, Bob le flambeur, Les cousins, Diary of a country priest, Pickpocket and le travesee de Paris.
Buy it this DVD. You'll be always rewarded.
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Format: DVD
This review is for the Criterion Collection DVD edition of the film.
This is one of the most exciting films that I have seen. The first 35 minutes I think are nonessential to the plot and knind of boring.
In the film, an oil well in South America catches fire and the only way to put it out is with nitroglycerin. There is a stockpile in a town some 300 miles away. The only problem is that they don't have refrigerated trucks. Nitro melts at 86ºF and when in liquid form, the slightest bump can cause it to go off. They hire a team of 4 to carry a couple tons of is across dangerous mountain roads in 2 trucks to where the fire is.
The film will have you on the edge of your seat as they encounter obstacles and poor road conditions. There is a scene when there is a boulder blocking the road and they use the nirto to blow it up.
There are no special features in this edition but it is still a great film that I would like to see remade.
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