‘Funny Girl’ (1968) Blu-Ray Review: Must-Own for Streisand Fans

Whatever you might think of Barbra Streisand now, her first film, 1968’s “Funny Girl,” is a potent reminder of the singular star power and talent that made her the diva/legend she is today. Director William Wyler’s biopic of Broadway star Fanny Brice was not only Babs’ big-screen debut, she also won the Best Actress Oscar (in a tie with Katherine Hepburn) for her charmingly energetic  portrayal of a ridiculously talented ugly duckling.

While the musical numbers are terrific and the production design pops in all of its 2.55:1 widescreen glory, at 155 minutes, the film itself is too long and lacks a compelling narrative. Part of the problem is that Brice’s musical-comedy talent was so undeniable, the star never really struggles. Brice shot to almost instant fame and stayed put (at least through the time-period covered in the film).

The non-showbiz plot revolves around Fanny’s romance with Nick Arnstein (Omar Sharif), a cultured and handsome but hopeless gambler. But this just wasn’t a romantic couple I felt invested in seeing or staying together. And with no real subplots to support anything else, watching the film becomes an exercise in waiting for the next lavish musical number — all of which are well worth the wait.

For Streisand fans, the Bluray is a must. The 4K transfer is like watching the film play out in real-life, and the Technicolor practically shines. Technicolor and Bluray go together like steak and potatoes.

“Funny Girl” is available for purchase at Amazon.com.


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.