WAR & PEACE (1966)

(HBO MAX/Criterion) This WAR & PEACE is a beast of an epic — featuring over ten-thousand extras and allegedly costing anywhere from (adjusted for inflation) $200-$700 million dollars — and best when it’s spectacle, as the actual story gets a tad muddled within the adaptation. (After all, at the end of the day it’s still a state-made piece.) Watching it at home, be it on your phone, a laptop or even a decently sized flatscreen TV, does a major disservice to the film. Find a projector, screen it on your cleanest wall for best results, and make a day of it.

Vulture has a quality piece regarding the production of the piece, which took years to film. https://www.vulture.com/2019/02/the-wild-story-behind-sergei-bondarchuks-epic-war-and-peace.html

(HBO MAX has a surprising back-catalog of films for some reason and, if I were a film history teacher, I’d pitch an entire class around its offerings. It’s definitely worth scanning through their entire catalog for buried gems.)