Columbia TriStar, which pioneered an innovative approach to audio commentaries by showing silhouettes at the bottom of the screen as they remarked on the action during “Ghostbusters,” employs an even more effective technique with the double-disc special edition DVD of the 1989 Civil War drama “Glory.”
Director Edward Zwick and co-stars Matthew Broderick and Morgan Freeman appear individually in picture-in-picture squares at the bottom left and right corners of the screen at various points during the movie, which was one of the first titles released on DVD in 1997.
This year’s model blends all of the best supplemental material previously available on VHS and Laserdisc, including the documentary and the original 7-1/2-minute promotional featurette. It also showcases new features such as the commentary presentations, Zwick’s audio commentary and two deleted scenes.
Also included on the second disc is “Voices of Glory,” a new short narrated by Georg Stanford Brown that, in the style of Ken Burns’ PBS documentary “Civil War,” features scenes from the movie as actors read letters written by soldiers in the regiment.
One of the more poignant moments comes from Freeman, who also narrates the 45-minute education-oriented documentary “The True Story of Glory Continues.” He offers the most profound comments in summarizing the movie’s depiction of the Alamo-like suicidal heroism of the first black regiment: “The glory is that they wanted to be there. The tragedy is that it was a gesture. They in no way helped the war effort.”
Pic, which won three Oscars (sound, cinematography and supporting actor Denzel Washington) is presented as it was in 1997 in widescreen format and in Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound.
Continuing to re-visit its library, Col will release special editions of “In the Line of Fire” and “Dr. Strangelove” on Feb. 27.