Blu-Ray Review: Withnail & I (Limited Edition)

Arrow Films is releasing a new limited edition Blu-Ray set of the British cult comedy Withnail-Iclassic Withnail & I (1987) from Writer/Director Bruce Robinson and starring Richard E. Grant , Paul McGannRichard Griffiths. This exclusive limited edition set will come packaged as a hardback book and includes new writing on the films, reprints of key press articles, deleted scenes and more over 200 pages and features original production stills.

This film has always stuck me as an English version of Terry Gilliam’sFear And Loathing In Las Vegas‘ (1998) based on the writings of Hunter S. Thompson. Both films tell a similar tale of substance ridden capers and they have even subsequently shared the same artwork designer – Ralph Steadman.  Richard E. Grant gives one of the best performances of his career in my eyes and he makes a perfect Withnail; the eccentric English madmen.

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Features:

  • New 2K restoration of Withnail & I from the original camera negative, supervised and approved by director of photography Peter Hannan
  • Bruce Robinson s follow-up feature, How to Get Ahead in Advertising, newly transferred from original film elements and approved by director of photography Peter Hannan
  • 4 Discs including High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD Presentation of both films -Original uncompressed mono 1.0 PCM audio for both films -Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing -Audio commentary by writer-director Bruce Robinson
  • Audio commentary by critic and writer Kevin Jackson, author of the BFI Modern Classic on Withnail & I
  • All four original ‘Withnail Weekend’ documentaries, first screened on Channel 4 in 1999, including The Peculiar Memories of Bruce Robinson, which looks at the director’s career, Withnail & Us, which focuses on the film’s making, and two shorter documentaries, I Demand to Have Some Booze and Withnail on the Pier
  • Newly filmed interviews with key members of Withnail & I’s behind-the-scenes team
  • Theatrical trailers for both films

The 2k Remaster brings a fresh lease of life visually to this film; which tended to look a little bit dated by today’s standards on the original video master. The features here are extensive, fascinating and feature previously un-released content which makes it a significant upgrade from previous special edition releases. The inclusion of follow-up film How To Get Ahead in Advertising is a nice bonus.

The set is available now with a limited release of only 2,000 copies. A must have for any fans of the film or Richard E. Grant.

Originally reviewed for Battle Royale With Cheese

 

 

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