After umpteenth DVD editions, this may really be the last word on the Godfather trilogy, which comprises two undisputed masterpieces and a third film which will probably always be regarded as either misguided, misunderstood, or a mistake. Parts I & II were recently restored from the original negative under the meticulous supervision of restoration maestro Robert A Harris and (as the box set title suggests) Coppola himself, and any fears that a too-crisp HD transfer might ruin the moody lighting and unique colour timing of the original film are immediately dispelled: the films look glorious, sound terrific – everything one would hope for in their HD debut – including Part II on a single disc.
EXTRAS: As well as the extras from previous editions, including the original Coppola commentaries, ‘making of’ and additional scenes, Paramount has commissioned some fascinating new HD features. The best is The Masterpiece That Almost Wasn’t (30 mins), which looks at how close the classic came to not being made at all, due to the changing nature of the film business, and includes interviews with Coppola, his American Zoetrope partner George Lucas, producer Bob Evans, and other movie luminaries. In When The Shooting Stopped (14 mins), another new featurette, Coppola is joined by George Lucas and editor Walter Murch to look at the problems the film had in post-production. Godfather World (11 mins) drafts in the likes of Steven Spielberg, Guillermo del Toro, William Friedkin, and Sopranos creator David Chase to look at the trilogy’s enduring legacy, from parodies to homages. Add a 19-minute documentary meticulously explaining the films’ restoration, and several other featurettes exploring various facets of the Godfather legacy, and you have a box set you can’t refuse.