Blu-ray reissue: THX-1138 ***

By Dennis Hartley

(Originally posted on Digby’s Hullabaloo on December 11, 2010)

THX-1138 (The George Lucas Director’s Cut) – Warner Blu-ray

Is it just me, or is it a fact that the farther back you go in George Lucas’ catalog, the more “mature” his films become? At any rate, I still like to revisit his 1971 debut now and then, and marvel at how prophetic it was in many ways; although its unifying theme, if it has one, remains elusive. Lucas gives his own imaginative take on an Orwellian “future”, where people have become dehumanized “product”, barely distinguishable from each other or from the stark technology that coddles and enslaves them (been to the mall lately?).

And, just like in 1984, or the cult TV series The Prisoner, the biggest crime one can commit in this strictly regimented society is to be a non-conformist. Robert Duvall (as the eponymous character) gives an interesting physical performance that at times borders on mime (think Chaplin’s Modern Times-except without the laughs).

Oddly, Lucas’ predominately white on white color scheme is even more striking in high-def. There are tons of extras to plow through on this Warner Blu-ray, including Lucas’ original student film version.

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