Blow Out Blow Out

Blow Out

Brian De Palma

Blow Out (Criterion Blu-Ray)


1 Disc

SRP: $39.95

Criterion Store price:$31.96

  • United States
  • 1981
  • 108 minutes
  • Color
  • 2.40:1
  • English
  • Spine #562

In the enthralling Blow Out, brilliantly crafted by Brian De Palma, John Travolta gives one of his greatest performances, as a movie sound-effects man who believes he has accidentally recorded a political assassination. He enlists the help of a possible eyewitness to the crime (Carrie’s Nancy Allen), who may be in danger herself, to uncover the truth. With its jolting stylistic flourishes, intricate plot, profoundly felt characterizations, and gritty evocation of early-1980s Philadelphia, Blow Out is an American paranoia thriller unlike any other, as well as a devilish reflection on moviemaking.


JackJohn Travolta
SallyNancy Allen
BurkeJohn Lithgow
Manny KarpDennis Franz
Detective MackeyJohn Aquino
SamPeter Boyden
Frank DonahueCurt May


DirectorBrian De Palma
ScreenplayBrian De Palma
ProducerGeorge Litto
Executive producerFred Caruso
Director of photographyVilmos Zsigmond
Production designPaul Sylbert
EditingPaul Hirsch
MusicPino Donaggio
Conducted byNatale Massara

Disc Features


  • Restored digital transfer, supervised and approved by director Brian De Palma, with DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Hour-long interview with De Palma, conducted by filmmaker Noah Baumbach in 2010
  • Interview with actor Nancy Allen from 2011
  • De Palma’s 1967 feature Murder à la Mod
  • Interview from 2010 with cameraman Garrett Brown on the Steadicam shots featured in the film within the film
  • On-set photos by photographer Louis Goldman
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • PLUS: A new essay by critic Michael Sragow and (Blu-ray only) Pauline Kael’s original New Yorker review

    New cover by Eric Skillman



Smooth Talk: A Conversation with Steadicam Inventor Garrett Brown

By Hillary Weston December 22, 2016

Garrett Brown in our kitchen reenacting a Steadicam-shot scene from Blow Out In 1975, the cameraman Garrett Brown revolutionized filmmaking technology with the Steadicam, an invention that . . . Read more »

On Five


From the De Palma Archives

September 11, 2016

On his seventy-sixth birthday, we’re celebrating the work of Hollywood enfant terrible Brian De Palma, whose iconoclastic five-decade career has encompassed an astonishing array of genres, . . . Read more »

Big Screen


Repertory Pick: Brian De Palma in Chicago

December 03, 2015

In advance of the upcoming release of Quentin Tarantino’s latest film, The Hateful Eight, Chicago’s Music Box Theatre will host a week-long series called Tarantino & Friends that begins . . . Read more »


Press Notes

Press Notes: Best of 2011

January 13, 2012

It’s the time of year when the list makers do their heavy lifting, looking back over the preceding twelve months and deciding what was best and brightest. We’re happy to report that some of our . . . Read more »

Photo Galleries

Press Notes

Press Notes: Blow Out

May 06, 2011

“As the greatest film ever made by one of the two or three most important filmmakers to emerge from the New Hollywood movement of the ’60s and ’70s, Blow Out is among the most significant films . . . Read more »


Blow Out: American Scream

By Michael Sragow April 25, 2011

With its mix of political skepticism and Hitchcockian thrills, De Palma’s film perfectly synthesizes the two halves of the director’s career. Read more »


Blow Out: Portrait of the Artist as a Young Gadgeteer

By Pauline Kael April 25, 2011

In 1981, the legendary critic went all out for Blow Out, which she thought was De Palma's most mature work to date. Read more »

Three Reasons


Reese S.

Updated 03/20/2018


Oscar Lau

Updated 03/21/2018



Updated 03/22/2018



Updated 03/19/2018



Updated 03/13/2018



Updated 03/22/2018


Steven H.

Updated 02/20/2018


Ryan Aldworth

Updated 02/19/2018



Updated 02/19/2018



Updated 03/21/2018


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