Moulin Rouge [DVD] [1952]

John Huston's Moulin Rouge (1952) showed up in a handsome-looking laserdisc in the early '90s, but MGM's June 2004 DVD release easily overshadows the earlier release, with a picture that is so sharp, crisp, and carefully shaded so as to match the best theatrical presentation the movie has received since its opening. The first 20 minutes of the movie, set in 19th century Montmartre, are among the most exhilarating set pieces in Huston's entire output, and the disc is so carefully mastered -- including Georges Auric's densely melodic scoring -- leaving one breathless, even on a small screen. Oswald Morris's photography has been painstakingly restored for this transfer in terms of the brightness, sharpness, and rich color tones in every shot; even the darkest shots have usable picture information. Paul Sheriff's Oscar-winning art direction and the extraordinary costuming by Marcel Vertes can be appreciated properly as well. The full-screen (1.33:1) image is of demonstration quality, even if the film itself does lag in pacing later on. Even the three-minute-long trailer looks better than the movie itself looked in television showings from the '60s. The audio has been set at a high volume level as well, which comes out very nicely on speakers. The movie has been given 24 chapters that are well chosen; the disc opens automatically to a simple menu with the "play" command in the default position.
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Special Features

  • Original theatrical trailer
  • Dolby Digital English Mono
  • English, French, and Spanish-language subtitles
  • Closed Captioned


Moulin Rouge
Moulin Rouge is the story of 19th century French artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, portrayed by José Ferrer. The film records his frustration over his physical handicap (the growth in his legs was stunted by a childhood accident), his efforts to "lose" himself in Paris' bawdy Montmartre district, and his career as a painter, which brought him money only when he turned out advertising posters--but what posters! Toulouse-Lautrec's drinking and debauchery lead to his early death, which in the hands of director John Huston is staged (brilliantly) in the manner of a musical comedy finale. This is the film in which Zsa Zsa Gabor actually acts, in the role of demimonde entertainer Jane Avril. As a bonus, the film's musical score (by Georges Auric) managed to hit the Top Ten charts in the U.S. When this immensely successful film was released to television in the late '50s, Moulin Rouge proved to be one of the strongest-ever incentives to purchase a color TV set. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Colette Marchand
    Colette Marchand - Marie Charlet
  • Suzanne Flon
    Suzanne Flon - Myriamme Hayen
  • Zsa Zsa Gabor
    Zsa Zsa Gabor - Jane Avril
  • Christopher Lee
    Christopher Lee - Georges Scurat
  • Image coming soon
    Katherine Kath - La Goulue

Overall Customer Rating

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1 Reviews
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