Few movies reach cult status like The Big Lebowski. Universal Pictures rereleased the movie on Blu-ray, and it gave us a chance to reexamine The Dude and all that he surveys.
Ethan Coen & Joel Coen
Jeff Bridges – Jeffrey Lebowski – The Dude
John Goodman – Walter Sobchak
Julianne Moore – Maude Lebowski
Steve Buscemi – Theodore Donald ‘Donny’ Kerabatsos
David Huddleston – Jeffrey Lebowski – The Big Lebowski
Philip Seymour Hoffman – Brandt
Tara Reid – Bunny Lebowski
“Dude” Lebowski, mistaken for a millionaire Lebowski, seeks restitution for his ruined rug and enlists his bowling buddies to help get it.
If you aren’t familiar with the story of The Big Lebwoski, don’t worry, there isn’t much to the story itself – “The Dude” Lebowski is mistaken for millionaire The Big Lewbowski and is sucked into a series of adventures involving all manner of being who want to mess with his life. The story itself is a weird mix of Raymond Chandler noir detective tale with comedy that only the brothers Coen can tell. And while the story isn’t something that will blow your mind or change the way you think, it is the interesting characters that the Coens introduce us to that makes the movie most memorable.
Many movies have characters that are instantly forgettable, but every character from Flea as one of the Nihilists, to the characters that populate the bowling alley, to the core characters of The Dude, Walter, and Donny, are what make this movie very special. It seems not a day goes by that i don’t run into someone who is either quoting the movie, or is trying to live the lifestyle of The Dude. And when you listen to the Coens talk about the making of the film, you learn that these characters were created and written with the actors in mind to bring out the best performances on screen.
When it comes to the visual storytelling, the Coens once again deliver an experience that still stands the test of time. Beautiful composition and lighting bring the world of The Dude’s Los Angeles to life, and the special effects that may not seem like a lot do add that special something to the overall movie. If you haven’t seen The Big Lebowski, now is the time to get your hands on the Blu-ray edition, as the remastering looks fantastic. The blacks are deep without losing detail, and the colors pop on the screen no matter the size. The old copies I had lost all detail in the background, but now everything looks fantastic, and sitting down to view this Blu-ray edition is like watching the movie for the first time.
Additionally, those that get their hands on the Limited Edition collection, not only get the movie on Blu-ray, but also a standard definition and a digital copy for your mobile device. There’s also a nice little booklet that examines the world of the Big Lebowski from the inspiration for The Dude, to behind the scenes look at the making of the movie, and a short essay on The Cult of The Dude. Several making ofs, including a look at the famous dream sequence are included on the disc, which are a must for filmmakers. The complete package is well put together, and having this on your movie shelf makes the world seem a little happier.
BOTTOM LINE: GET THIS MOVIE
The Big Lebowski works on so many different levels, and for student of film, this movie is worth watching again and again in a high quality transfer. Interesting characters, awesome acting, and a visual narrative that draws the viewer in make The Big Lebowski a must own movie. The movie is thirteen years old, but you can’t really tell as The Dude and his story are timeless. 5 out of 5 Stars.