Lord of the Flies (The Criterion Collection)
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Lord of the Flies is famed theater director Peter Brook's daring translation of William Golding's brilliant novel. The story of 30 English schoolboys stranded on an uncharted island at the start of the "next" war, Lord of the Flies is a seminal film of the New American Cinema and a fascinating anti-Hollywood experiment in location filmmaking. As the cast relived Golding's frightening fable, Brook found the cinematic "evidence" of the author's terrifying thesis: there is a beast in us all.
In this classic 1963 adaptation of William Golding's novel, a planeload of schoolboys is stranded on a tropical island. They've got food and water; all that's left is to peacefully govern themselves until they're rescued. "After all," says choir leader Jack, "We're English. We're the best in the world at everything!" Unfortunately, living peacefully is not as easy as it seems. Though Ralph is named chief, Jack and the choristers quickly form a clique of their own, using the ever-effective political promise of fun rather than responsibility to draw converts. Director Peter Brook draws some excellent performances out of his young cast; the moment when Ralph realizes that even if he blows the conch for a meeting people might not come is an excruciating one. Well acted and faithfully executed, Lord of the Flies is as compelling today as when first released. --Ali Davis --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
"Which is it better to be? A pack of painted savages...or sensible...Which is better? To have rules and agree, or to hurt and kill."
Then above quote said by one of the main characters is actually the crux of this extremely interesting movie based on the 1954 novel of the same name by William Golding.
The story is actually a simple one. A plane crashes on an uninhabited island. The survivors are a group of privileged preadolescent British schoolboys including some choirboys. They must learn to survive on this island until they are rescued.
We get to see what happens as the boys adapt to their new environment. We also get to observe how the veneer of civilization slowly erodes from them. We get to see how their primitive instincts overtakes the majority of them and how their moral compasses seem to get lost.
This is not just a tale of lost innocence. It's a case study of the behaviour of kids in the wilderness.
This movie was not filmed in a studio somewhere but the director (Peter Brook) and his young cast of school kids really were on a desert island together. (Filming took place entirely in Puerto Rico and on the island of Vieques)
The actors were young amateur actors, few of whom ever acted again.
For those that have read the novel, this film closely follows the trajectory of the book.
This movie was filmed in black and white, adding yet another dimension to it. This particular disc has a newly, restored digital film transfer.
Finally, the DVD set (the Criterion Collection released in 2013) has a long list of excellent extras including audio recordings of William Golding reading from his novel "Lord of the Flies," accompanied by the corresponding scenes from this film.Read more ›
"Lord of the Flies" was the first dvd I bought and it introduced me to the phenomenal Criterion Collection. Every extra on this dvd is fantastic and interesting, there is no filler or meaningless praise. The commentary alone is worth the price of this dvd, it gives a magnificent insight into how this film was made: for instance, the film was one of the first independent productions ever produced. This is one of those rare commentaries that adds to your appreciation and understanding of the film, I rank it alongside "Seven Samurai" and "Grand Illusion" (also both Criterion dvds) commentaries as among the best I have heard.
The film itself looks abolutely fantastic, worlds better than any vhs or laserdisc edition I had previously seen; criterion's produced an amazing, clean image that will be striking on any video set up.
_Lord of the Flies_ is one of my favorite novels; Golding masterfully touched on many themes and concepts about society and managed to capture the essence of humanity in the boyish caricatures he created. For the most part those themes and ideas come across very faithfully in the film. As it is pointed out in the dvd's commentary; there is no screenwriting credit, because there was no script, the production team worked straight from the novel, using it as their sole source of the story. The result is a remarkably clear and coherent adapation of the original novel, brought to life with great faith and startling prowess for a first time filmmaker.Read more ›
Whether ir not it lives up to the book is a whole other question. I think it is wonderful in its own right, and that it does a great job of bringing Golding's story to the screen. Whatever.
As a DVD, this Criterion Collection edition is practically unsurpassed. I buy very few DVDs because they are expensive and I see this new medium as an opportunity to build a truly great movie collection. One afternoon I was discussing with some friends what movies we would buy on DVD. I immediately suggested "The original 'Lord of the Flies'. But they won't release it. And if they do it will be a crappy transfer. And there won't be any extras." Oh, how wrong I was! The sound and picture transfers are incredible - the film is better than I've ever seen it. And the extras are amazing! The commentary is completely satisfying from a filmmaker's point of view, and likewise a philosopher's interest. The story of the making of the film is worth the purchase in itself.
There's tons of stuff to watch and listen to. It's great. It's totally worth the price. I thought that "The Matrix" was a great value as a DVD (in terms of extras), but this matches it and means a lot more. "Buy it!", I say!
Most recent customer reviews
A classical tale of the ugly mystery of human contradictions in community-life challenges. Worth being seen again and meditating upon that brilliant movie of the '60s. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Milou
Fantastic upgrade on audio and visual. Must for any fan of good cinema.Published 5 months ago by Quicksilver2477
Great movie. Good audio quality. Extras come on the dvd. If you're wanting to show it in class, apart from the violence, you'll have to be cognizant of the nude boys' rears. Read morePublished 16 months ago by E.G
While it is not possible to transliterate a novel into film, this film comes as close as possible. All secondary teachers should have a copy of this film and use it in grade ten... Read morePublished on Dec 8 2013 by Horace Raschpiggi
Teachers, students, this version captures as best it can the rawness of the action. The black-and-white format contributes to the stark reality of man's descent into Hell. Read morePublished on Sept. 29 2013 by Laurence F. Funnell
I saw this movie when I was a kid and it makes you think what would you do if you were stuck on an island and find out that no leadership causes extreme problems. Read morePublished on Aug. 5 2013 by Geoff Martin
I've seen this video more then 30 times since it came out. It is an excellent adaption of the book. Lord of the Flies (Full Screen)Published on Jan. 28 2010 by Wayne J. Stirling
i loved this movie, including the book. But the dvd costs alot but oh well.Published on Nov. 23 2006 by Joanna
This review is for the Criterion Collection DVD edition of the film.
This film, based on William Godling's novel, is a film that many will find disturbing. Read more
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