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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

The Dance of Reality aka "La Danza de la realidad" [Blu-ray]


(Alejandro Jodorowsky, 2013)



also available on Blu-ray in the US:


Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: Le Soleil Films

Video: Artificial Eye / Curzons



Region: 'B' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 2:12:32.958

Disc Size: 36,169,073,216 bytes

Feature Size: 33,457,410,048 bytes

Video Bitrate: 28.24 Mbps

Chapters: 12

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: September 14th, 2015



Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



DTS-HD Master Audio Spanish 1922 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1922 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
LPCM Audio
Spanish 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit



English, none



Cannes Intro (8:35)
Trailer (1:24)





Description: The Dance of Reality, written, produced and directed by Alejandro Jodorowsky is a mystical autobiography of Jodorowsky s childhood, blending his personal history with metaphor, mythology and poetry. The film reflects the director s view that reality is not objective but rather a dance created by our imaginations. After its world premiere at Cannes in 2013 and US premiere at SXSW in 2014, the film has received universal praise from all media outlets including the New York Times which hailed it as a near masterpiece and a NY Times Critics pick, the Los Angeles Times, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter,, Vulture, and indieWIRE. It opened in theaters on May 23rd as the #1 independent film in the country and is now Certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes with a score of 93%. Considered the father of the Midnight Movies, Jodorowsky is best known for his films, El Topo (1970) and The Holy Mountain (1973), which have since become cult classics.



The Film:

"Having broken away from my illusory self, I was desperately seeking a path and a meaning to life." This phrase perfectly sums up Alejandro Jodorowsky's biographical project: reconstituting the incredible adventure of his life. Alejandro Jodorowsky was born in 1929 in Tocopilla, a coastal town on edge of the Chilean desert, where this film was shot. It was there where he discovered the fundamentals of reality, as he underwent an unhappy and alienated childhood as part of an uprooted family.

Excerpt from MRQE located HERE

What does a dyed-in-the-wool surrealist conjure up after 23 years away from making features? Octogenarian cult-movie maestro Alejandro Jodorowsky ("El Topo," "Santa Sangre") keeps it all fleet, funny and weird in "The Dance of Reality," but this time in the service of an explicitly autobiographical meditation on his childhood in the coastal Chilean village of Tocopilla in the early 1930s.

Shy, young Alejandro (Jeremias Herskovits) — at times nurtured through the story's twists by the physical presence of Jodorowsky himself, narrating — lives with his voluptuous, opera-aspiring mother (soprano Pamela Flores, singing her dialogue) and autocratic Stalin-worshiping father (Jodorowsky's son, Brontis).

Jodorowsky's obsessions are still in force: spirited amputees, circus performers, blood, alchemy and buffoonish authority. But it's a generously reflective eye he trains on the stunted dreams of his eccentric parents, especially an ill-fated (and mightily extrapolated, apparently) attempt by dad to assassinate Chile's president.

Excerpt from the LA Times located HERE


Image :    NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

The Dance of Reality gets a very impressive transfer to Blu-ray from Artificial Eye / Curzons. It was shot on digital (Red Epic) and is as clean and crisp as you could image from the screen captures below. It is dual-layered territory with a high bitrate for the 2 1/4 hour feature. Colors are far brighter, deeper and truer than SD could support and there is no noise at all. The 1080P supports solid contrast exhibiting healthy, rich black levels and some frequent depth in the 1.85:1 frame.  It's pristinely clean showcasing some hi-def detail and there are really no flaws with the rendering. It looks close to 'demo' level for the attractive eye-candy filled movie. This Blu-ray does an amazingly competent job of presenting The Dance of Reality on your home theatre system.




















Audio :

The AE Blu-ray of The Dance of Reality offers a DTS-HD Master 5.1 at 1922 kbps in the original Spanish language. It has some separations adding to the exotic atmosphere and some depth is also present in the few instances of aggression. There is also a linear PCM stereo track (1536 kbps) available - both are in 16-bit. The score is by Adan Jodorowsky (the director's son) and sounds colorful and tight. Everything is, predictably, clear and rich - without flaws whatsoever.  There are optional English subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'B'-locked.


Extras :

Not a lot - 8.5 minutes of Jodorowsky's introduction and reception at Cannes, hosted by Nicolas Winding Refn, and there is also a trailer for the film.



What an amazing work. Can you ever prepare yourself for a Alejandro Jodorowsky film? With Fellini-esque flourishes The Dance of Reality washes its eccentricities, its colors and taboo-leanings across the screen. A wild, touchingly human film experience that, visually, you will not soon forget.  The Artificial Eye/ Curzons' Blu-ray provides an excellent a/v presentation and is very worthwhile owning as it can be a film to revisit many times. This is easy to put in the 'don't hesitate' category for World Cinema digital librarians everywhere. Absolutely recommended! 

Gary Tooze

September 4th, 2015


also available on Blu-ray in the US:


About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.

Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze






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