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After Hours (1985)


Commentaries on this disc:

Commentary 1: Director Martin Scorsese, actor Griffin Dunne, producer Amy Robinson, director of photography Michael Ballhaus, and Edtior Thelma Rating:7.9/10 (10 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by scroll2b on August 10th, 2005:Find all reviews by scroll2b
This is one of the best Scorsese commentaries around. It really isn't bad. In fact, it's quite informative. Recommended.
Reviewed by Gavin Millarrrrrrrrrr on December 13th, 2008:Find all reviews by Gavin Millarrrrrrrrrr
Not a full Commentary but a 1 hour and 12 minute Selected Scenes Commentary which while only occasionally scene specific is always interesting.
You have to laugh when early on Scorsese says "to cut a long story short" because, happily, when talking movies it's just not possible for Scorsese to keep it short!
He starts by describing how the collapse of his first attempt to film THE LAST TEMPTATION OF CHRIST left him at a crossroads in his career (he'd also just turned 40), questioning his very future in films, before deciding he needed to get back to the more efficient film-making of MEAN STREETS to sustain his creativity, and how AFTER HOURS with it's small-scale and familiar (nighttime) New York locale (not to mention the lead character's guilt complex) appealed greatly and fitted the bill perfectly.
Once we get to the scene where the keys are dropped from a high window everyone (all recorded separately) gets to join in - some addressing the difficulties and others the dangers, while Scorsese says it was the first scene they edited and the last (and when he last saw it on TV he still wasn't satisfied with it!).
After this it's cinematographer Ballhaus who dominates the track, revelling in the technical challenges the film presented and describing this, his first (but far from last) collaboration with Scorsese, as a "great and wonderful experience".
Along the way, producers Robinson and Dunne give their history as producers and Scorsese adds some detail about the inspiration of the improbable plots found in films by Alan Dwan.
Towards the end, in her only major contribution to the track, Schoonmaker says they cut 45 minutes of material which they loved but knew had to go to make the film work, including Scorsese's favourite scene, along with her own (which is at least included amongst the (mere) 8 minutes of deleted scenes elsewhere on the disc).
Despite all this footage, Scorsese reveals they still had no ending and after consulting friends such as Steven Spielberg, they shot for another 4 days to create a more satisfying conclusion (the accompanying 20 minute Making Of documentary on the disc reveals another, quite extraordinary, alternate ending that Scorsese was seriously considering).
AFTER HOURS is sometimes forgotten amongst Scorsese's more celebrated works, but it certainly shouldn't be ignored, and this commentary track underlines how important it was in restoring his love of film-making and his faith in himself, making it a must-hear for Scorsese fans.
Reviewed by badge on December 10th, 2009:Find all reviews by badge
Roughly a 75-minute commentary of a 97-minute movie, but this DVD shows exactly HOW to do this sort of thing, by having the disc playback omit all sections that have no accompanying audio commentary - therefore, no dead spots and a continuous track. Scorsese is engaging as always (it must be something to do with his inimitable rapid-fire delivery) and provides some amusing anecdotes - I love the demand for abstinence he gave Griffin Dunne for the duration of the shoot. Dunne needs only to throw in a few contributions as he features extensively on the DVD's accompanying 'Making Of' segment. Ballhaus talks a lot but doesn't provide much that's specific, instead he seems to spend half the time talking about other films he's worked on.
Reviewed by Magneat-o on January 8th, 2017:Find all reviews by Magneat-o
I love this film so if anybody does any commentary on it, im going to like it. This of course is actually great commentary. Especially from Scorsese who can be hit or miss. He actually talks about the films origins, the development, the shoot and a lot more. There's funny inside stories about the shoot, like almost killing an actor ( Dunne ) with a 1000 lb camera rig because you want an intetesting shot of keys being thrown off a balcony. This is the same guy who was made to run full tilt around city blocks of SOHO continually to look more desperate and exhausted.

I always wanted an explanation as to why Cheech and Chong show up as Cheech and Chong in a non-Cheech and Chong movie for no apparent reason. A Scorsese movie even. If that's Scorsese being daring by going completely against the grain, the guy has a great sense of humour.

This movie is dark, funny, beautiful and bizarre. I can't throw enough adjectives at it. They wont do. The tones and mood are moving everywhere and are alive with electricity. Great commentary, great movie.