When I went to the DVD fair with Olav, I bought only one DVD: The collector’s edition of “Close Encounters”, at an amazing price of merely 10 euros. It’s the 2 DVD version, too, and tonight I finally watched the thing.
I really don’t think I have to explain the story of the movie, it’s such a classic. Basically, UFOs come to Earth, causing all kinds of reactions from both random people and a government task force. It differs from the normal space alien flying saucer movie in that the aliens are friends – and not invaders.
I am pretty undecided about the movie. On the one hand it’s beautifully done; and if you’re younger then it can even be scary. But the aliens are cheesy and the “happy happy smiley aliens” idea makes me almost physically sick. Still, it’s such a classic that everybody really needs to see it… and when you do, you can just as well make up your own mind.
About this DVD edition: I am really sad that – like too many other DVDs – Close Encounters does not contain an audio commentary track. However, the DVD set makes more than up for it by providing a very lengthy “Making Of”, deleted scenes, a featurette, and trailers. So I am not too disappointed with the extras. The Making Of is especially interesting, because Close Encounters was done before computer animations invaded the movie industrie. Basically everything in the movie is real – visual effects, paintings, models, clever filming, it’s all combined to create a perfect illusion. I probably enjoyed the making of more than the movie itself.
If you haven’t seen this movie, go and see it. If you can get the DVD at a decent price, don’t hesitate. If you can get it at a normal price, still get it. It’s a really decent way to spend the evening.