Home Theater Movie Renter's Guide - April, 2012


The Deer Hunter (Blu-ray) - Reviewed by Jim Milton



Winner of five Academy Awards®, including Best Picture and Best Director, and one of AFI's Top 100 Films of All Time, The Deer Hunter follows a group of Pennsylvania steelworkers from their blue-collar lives, hunting in the woods of the Alleghenies, to the hells of Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War. Academy Award® winners Robert De Niro and Christopher Walken star in this unforgettable saga of friendship and courage. Experience the brutality of war and the depths of emotional strain on the human spirit in this extraordinarily powerful film classic.


  • Universal Studios
    • 1978, Color, Rated R, 182 Min
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Codec: AVC-1/ 2 discs
  • 1080p
  • English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
  • Starring: Robert De Niro, Christopher Walken, John Cazale, John Savage, Meryl Streep
  • Directed by Michael Cimino
  • Entertainment:
  • Video:
  • Audio:
  • Extras:
  • Violence: Yes
  • Sex: Mild
  • Language: Yes


I divide this movie into 3 parts: the small town wedding, the war, and post traumatic effects it has on all of the characters lives. The first part gets you acquainted with the characters, the war shocks you with its inhumanity and brutality and the last part reveals the hidden, psychological and physical toll on a small group of friends. All of the actors are great in this film and I can see why it won so many awards. In spite of his political views, I love Di Nero and he really shines in this film. War is hell and no man returns from hell unharmed. This movie will leave you with plenty to think about long after it is over.


The picture quality of this film is all over the place. Some scenes exhibit striking clarity and detail, while others are soft and out of focus. Dark scenes exhibit crushing of details and skin tones vary from scene to scene. Overall, the print is clean and does not show dirt or blemishes. Sound is generally good, but the soundtrack and voices often sound tinny, with no weight to them. One technical quibble: Where do you find snow covered mountains like that in PA? -Still, this is an important film and should not be missed by people who have never seen this movie.


Disappointing for a movie of this caliber: Audio commentary, deleted scenes and a theatrical trailer.