DVD REVIEWS: Downfall

Sony
Movie ••½ Picture/Sound •••• Extras ••
In this impressive dramatization of the fall of Berlin in 1945, Hitler's bunker becomes a visual metaphor for the stunted moral vision of the Nazi leadership. The ensemble cast, led by Bruno Ganz in a scary reincarnation of the Führer, clearly conveys the motivations of the characters, which only makes their crimes more horrifying. The picture is excellent in both detail and color, and the 5.1-channel mix puts you right in the middle of artillery barrages and drunken orgies. Director Oliver Hirschbiegel's commentary provides a great deal of historical background, but a disappointing making-of featurette doesn't give much information on the production. [R] German, Dolby Digital 5.1 (with English subtitles); letterboxed (1.78:1) and anamorphic widescreen; dual layer.
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