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    $8.93 $7.94
    1. The Wizard of Oz
    list($14.98)
    2. The Jazz Singer
    $27.80 list($19.98)
    3. Grand Prix
    $39.99 list($8.98)
    4. Gone with the Wind
    $19.98 $15.25
    5. Drums Along the Mohawk
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    6. Hondo
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    8. Fort Apache
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    13. The Quiet Man
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    14. Mandingo
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    15. To Grandmother's House We Go
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    19. There's Something About Mary
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    20. Fantastic Voyage

    1. The Wizard of Oz
    Director: Richard Thorpe, King Vidor, Victor Fleming
    list price: $8.93
    our price: $8.93
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    Asin: B00000JS61
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 100
    Average Customer Review: 4.63 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (339)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A true masterpiece! A 5 star winner and a true classic!
    The Wizard of Oz has got to be one of the greatest movies in classical and musical cinema history. For sixty years this movie has been the perfect choice for childeren and adults to watch and enjoy. The story is about Dorthy Gale who lives in Kansas with her aunt and uncle. When Dorthy decides to run away from home because of her feelings being empty a tornado hits and she and her house are taken to another world, the Land of Oz. A place where she finds friends like she never imagined like Glinda the good witch of the north, the beautiful witch who gives her the rubey slippers which posses power like any unknown. The scarecrow, a friendly man of clothing and straw who wants a brian, the tin woodsman, a sweet man made of tin who wants a heart, the lion, a kind and cowardly forest animal who wants courage and the wicked witch of the west, a evil witch who wants the rubey slippers and revenge on Dorthy for accidently killing her sister, the wicked witch of the east. As Dorthy and her friends follow the yellow brick to the emerald city, the place where the great and powerful and mysterious Wizard of Oz lives the magic of this film can tell the rest.

    A true masterpiece! Excellent polt, characters, music and more. It holds an emotional presents that will touch everyone's heart and wish they were in the Land of Oz! See it and live through the magic of this timeless classical film of wonders.

    5-0 out of 5 stars An OZ-some DVD Experience
    Like most baby boomers, I've watched this film dozens of times in the past on broadcast TV, then VHS tape, then LaserDisc ... but I had never actually SEEN "The Wizard of Oz" until this newly restored DVD came out. It's an amazing transfer. The sepia-tone Kansas sequences are startlingly sharp and clear, and the Technicolored world "Over the Rainbow" is truly dazzling. I found myself fascinated by details I had never noticed before: the glittering corn stalks in the Scarecrow's field; the mirror-like floors of the Emerald City; the polished buttons on the guardsmen's uniforms. Incredibly, even the individual grains of red sand in the Witch's hourglass stood out and glistened! All these minor-but-sumptuous visual details served to heighten the magical spell that the film has always woven, enhancing the performances, the story, and the music.

    The DVD extras are a mind-boggling embarrassment of riches. The "Making Of" documentary hosted by the incomparable Angela Lansbury is worth the price of the DVD alone, but there's so much more: an international poster gallery, interviews with cast members, deleted scenes, production stills, radio clips, etc, etc. There's enough material to keep even the most casual viewer fascinated for hours, and a true Oz buff will be occupied for days!

    If you only bought a DVD player to watch this one disc, it would well be worth the expense. Treat yourself, and fall in love with this classic film again ... for the first time.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Wonderful Movie of Oz
    I have been enchanted as I now watch the movie as an adult. It is not just a story about a girl from Kansas trying to get back home - actually, that was added into the movie: "There's no place like home" wasn't in the book even. I think it was a story of things that we want, and that we imagine these things may be granted by the Wonderful Wizard of Oz. The scarecrow wants a brain, the tinman a heart, and the lion courage. On their journey off to see the wizard, they encounter the wicked witch of the west - who is determined to get the ruby slippers off of Dorothy's feet. Now, the thing I am puzzled by is at the beginning, Glinda is the one who reminds the wicked witch about the shoes. Then she is the one who places them on Dorothy's feet: "There they are and there they'll stay." Had she not had the shoes, her journey to the wizard would not have been so troublesome. Not to mention that the "good witch" sent Dorothy on a journey to a phony wizard. I wonder now if there was some kind of irony in that - since she was also the one who in the end tells Dorothy that all she has to do is click her heels together and say "there 's no place like home." While the movie is totally a classic I love and will watch over and over again, I am wondering about the book: Were the "ruby slippers" (which were silver in the novel) as magical - and - if there was no "no place like home" in the novel then I am wondering how Dorothy got back to Kansas. I think that because each time I watch this film I realize something new, it will always remain one of my favorite movies ever.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Wizard of Oz is wonderful
    The classic film! The Wizard of Oz is wonderful. Judy Garland's breakthrough performance. Beautiful.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Growing Up, Growing On
    I knew every line of this as a kid. I loved the books. I even loved the sequel that everyone else hated because I love OZ. I tried to be "over" this movie for a long time as an adult. But every time I see it I re-remember why I couldn't get enough before. The quintessential fairy tale. All kids and all adults should watch it again to remind them that a movie can work without sex, violence or graphic anything really. It's scary -- touching -- and completely engrossing -- more so each year I grow older. ... Read more


    2. The Jazz Singer
    Director: Richard Fleischer
    list price: $14.98
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    Asin: 6302906644
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 467
    Average Customer Review: 3.87 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    Not much jazz spoken in this 1980 version of the Jolson classic, directed by Richard Fleischer(The Vikings) and starring a very tentative Neil Diamond as a cantor's son who would rather sing commercially than in a synagogue. The soundtrack is tedious, the portrait of L.A.'s music industry preposterous, and Diamond (despite his talents as a singer-songwriter in the real world) can't help but look like a speck on the wall in the presence of Laurence Olivier, who plays his father. --Tom Keogh ... Read more

    Reviews (45)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Diamond's Music, Olivier's Presence, OH MAMMY!
    This review refers to the VHS(1989 paramount) edition of this film....
    At the 1927-1928 (First) Academy Awards Presentation "The Jazz Singer" starring Al Jolsen picked up a special award for pioneering the "Talkies". Obviously sound has come alooooong way since then and this 1980 modern day remake makes good use of it.
    Jess Robinovitch(Neil Diamond)is a 5th generation Jewish cantor,tied to his role in the temple in the lower east side of New York. . His voice is phenominal(of course),he writes his own music, ballads mostly and has a chance to strike out on his own in Los Angeles.
    He leaves for L.A. against the wishes of father, the 4th generation cantor(Laurence Olivier), and his wife, who likes things just the way they are.
    It will take a while to achieve super stardom(at least a month!), but with the help of his new manager Molly(Lucie Arnaz),it is accomplished!The problem is his family is unhappy with the situation, his wife liked life when it was just them, his father is torn up about his son going against tradtion.Jess is having trouble coming to terms with the downfall of his relationship with his father. Molly feels responsible for the rift. Get your Kleenex ready as they work this out.
    Diamond's soundtrack is wonderful. It includes "Love on the Rocks" and "Hello Again".Sir Olivier has not lost his touch, He is still the master. The British legend plays the Jewish cantor steeped in tradtion like he was born to the part, his performance alone is worth the watch.
    The VHS is in hi-fi stereo, Dolby Surround, which enhances this musical.
    Need a nice cry? This is the one!.......Laurie

    2-0 out of 5 stars For Diamond Music Fans Only
    If you are a fan of Neil Diamond's music, then you will no doubt enjoy this movie.

    Purely as a movie, however, this isn't very good. Cliched and schmaltzy, most of the scenes seem strung together as an excuse to fill time between musical numbers. The story, as borrowed from the original Jolson film: son of a cantor wants to sing popular music instead of following in his father's footsteps.

    Neither Diamond nor Arnaz are going to win Oscars anytime soon -- in fact, Diamond demonstrates that, as an actor, he's a heck of a singer. The only shining performance in this movie is that of the incomparable Olivier, who proves that he can play any role given to him impeccably, no matter how dopey the surroundings.

    If you are expecting any meat or substance to this movie, forget it. The music IS good enough to sit through once, which is why it gets two stars from me, but the only reason I own it is because my wife simply adores Diamond's music.

    Buy the soundtrack, if you like it, but I would avoid the film itself. The DVD, meanwhile, is nothing special; the print is average at best, and there are no extra features worth discussing.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Luci Arnaz- remove this from your resume
    Ugh. Poor plot development and cardboard characters. For example, he loves his wife sooooo much and discards her sooooo easily? Not likely. Lucie Arnaz, a wonderful personality and normally "good" actress is a cartoon character. Who could fall in love with Neil Diamond with all his angst and schmaltzy whining? Not I, that's for sure.

    3-0 out of 5 stars a bad movie with great music
    This is not a great adaptation of the Jazz singer,the acting is mediocre,the progress of the plot is unrealistic,but Neil Diamond`s great music makes it worth watching.I used to have the soundtrack to this movie,i enjoyed it a great deal.

    5-0 out of 5 stars WONDERFUL!
    I can't understand why this movie was so poorly accepted. It was a well acted, well directed film. ... Read more


    3. Grand Prix
    Director: John Frankenheimer
    list price: $19.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6304366086
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 561
    Average Customer Review: 4.62 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com essential video

    Light on story, this 1966 spectacle directed by John Frankenheimer was shot in 70 millimeter, with a cinematically enthralling emphasis on unique, visceral new ways of capturing the sensations of a car race. James Garner, Eva Marie Saint, Yves Montand, and Toshiro Mifune are part of the stellar, international cast whose characters plod through assorted relationship and business conflicts. But the film's real hook is the thrilling and inventive means by which Frankenheimer (The Manchurian Candidate) brings an urgency to the drama happening on the racetrack. A true master of the plastic techniques of obtaining and cutting kinetic footage, Frankenheimer offers more than a joyride to viewers: he makes action part of the compelling language of stories. Cameras are strapped to vehicles as they round the track, shots are taken from a helicopter, the screen is split between angles for maximum impact--even if Grand Prix doesn't rank among the director's best character-driven stories, it is certainly driven on its own terms. --Tom Keogh ... Read more

    Reviews (53)

    4-0 out of 5 stars a classic and a must for race fans
    John Frankenheimer broke new ground when he filmed "Grand Prix", putting cameras on single-seater cars and thus creating some of the most amazing footage ever shot of cars from that era. The movie is on the light side as far as the story development goes, and while James Garner is very convincing as an American grand prix ace, one has a harder time buying this sort of act from Yves Montand who plays the aging Ferrari driver. Eva Marie Saint is cast as a magazine journalist following the grand prix circus around Europe, trying to get a story - a storyline that was recently successfully resurrected in "Driven". Her lovestory with Montand is not exactly hot, but the highly dramatic race action in Monte Carlo, Spa, and Monza (they still used the famous banking of the autodromo in those days!)more than makes up for that. The film features cameo appearances of some of the era's greatest drivers like Graham Hill. Letter-boxed on a larger screen is the only decent way to completely enjoy the breath-taking cinematography of this classic.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Grand Prix starring James Garner
    Grand Prix, the film, is an amazing documentary portraying grand prix racing in the late 1960's. James Garner plays an outstanding role as American driver Pete Aaron. With little dialogue and plenty of authentic race footage, Grand Prix can eaisly be quoted to be the best racing movie ever produced. John Frankenheimer took the racing fans image of early grand prix racing to it's greatest extreme and and made it into one of the first auto racing films ever to be produced. A production of this quality will never be recreated because of the manner in which it was made. The footage is real racing, not acting. Helicopters were flown down the straightways 15-20 feet above the cars during races. The FIA these days wouldn't let an aircraft within miles of the circuit, making a film with the action of Grand Prix impossible to duplicate.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Grand Prix
    Having recently rediscovered Formula 1 racing on the Speed Channel, I went looking for the finest movie ever made concerning the Grand Prix, the movie of the same name. I was fortunate to have seen it in Cinemascope in a theater especially designed for just such movies - humongous curved screen, as fine a sound system as then available. I've watched the movie several times on the little box but it's never duplicated the original experience. I CANNOT BELIVE it is not yet available on DVD. If ever a movie deserved the DVD treatment this is it. The very finest movie of its kind - it accurately captures the essence of Formula 1 racing and is every bit as timely and viable a viewing experience as it was 38 years ago. If we pull together it will soon be available - I have no doubt.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Grand Prix, Grand indeed!
    It has been said that this is the best racing movie ever made. It is.

    No movie before or since has been able to capture the feeling and essence of racing in the 60's or any other era.

    What director Frankenheimer does in this movie is still exciting even by today's standards.

    Even though I am a huge Steve McQueen fan, Le Mans definitely takes second place to Grand Prix.

    I was really excited to see the movie Driven with Stallone, until I saw it. All I kept saying to myself was "This is not even close to Grand Prix". Grand Prix has not only raised the bar, but has set it as well.

    Do yourself a favor, don't rent, but rather buy this film and get ready for an education on how great movies were made and should be made.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Beware: Pan and Scan
    Be aware that this is a Pan and Scan version of the film, a fact that is omitted in the product description. As a result, many scenes that were thrilling in Cinemascope and awkward here. Nonetheless, I fully concur with other reviewers - this is a must have film for car buffs and racing fans. ... Read more


    4. Gone with the Wind
    Director: Victor Fleming, George Cukor, Sam Wood
    list price: $8.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6305123616
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 103
    Average Customer Review: 4.39 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com essential video

    David O. Selznick wanted Gone with the Wind to be somehow more than a movie, a film that would broaden the very idea of what a film could be and do and look like. In many respects he got what he worked so hard to achieve in this 1939 epic (and all-time box-office champ in terms of tickets sold), and in some respects he fell far short of the goal. While the first half of this Civil War drama is taut and suspenseful and nostalgic, the second is ramshackle and arbitrary. But there's no question that the film is an enormous achievement in terms of its every resource--art direction, color, sound, cinematography--being pushed to new limits for the greater glory of telling an American story as fully as possible. Vivien Leigh is still magnificently narcissistic, Olivia de Havilland angelic and lovely, Leslie Howard reckless and aristocratic. As for Clark Gable: we're talking one of the most vital, masculine performances ever committed to film.--Tom Keogh ... Read more

    Reviews (481)

    3-0 out of 5 stars One of the Most Overrated Films Ever
    Gone With the Wind is remember as a great movie because of it's epic scope and excellent production values. But 60 years later when the big budget no longer thrills us, we are left with a decent film but nothing special.

    To begin with the entire film is very campy and melodramatic. The whole film is very heavy-handed and over-done. Scenes like where Scarlet crys "I'll never be hungry again" are just plain ackward. Someone should have tatooed the word "subtlty" on Selznick's head.

    The script is fairly weak too. It presents a very narrow, one dimensional view of the Civil War. Worse, the Civil War ends half way through the movie and the rest of the film lacks the first half's energy.

    Another major flaw is that the characters lack any real depth. Scarlet is cold and nasty through the whole movie. She never changes untill the last two minutes of the movie. There is simply no development. Ashley is noble and his wife is so nice and sweat that it makes me sick. These characters simply aren't human and don't feal real. Probably the only character in the whole movie who actually developes at all is Ret. Sadly, Clark Gable's strong performance isn't enough to carry the rest of the cast.

    It should also be noted that Gone With the Wind is very racist at some points. The scene where all the slaves are going off to fight the "evil yankees" is enough to turns one's stomache. Most of the black characters are portrayed as child-like and stupid. The only exception to this is Mimi who does an excellent job and deserved her Oscar.

    Gone With the Wind is still an example of fine production values but when you strip away all the lavish sets and money spent on the film, you're left with a rather hollow experiance. While there is no denying that it is a very pretty movie, even today, and it does have it's moments, Gone With the Wind is simply an over-done and campy movie. This film does not deserve to be ranked up there with the likes of Citizen Kane or the Godfather. It's just not that good.

    4-0 out of 5 stars After more than 400 reviews...
    ...you can't say much else!! A spectacle to end all spectacles; the epitomy of costume, art direction, and cinemagraphic grandeur (Technicolor film was still rare in the 1930's, and the industry was already engulfed in production of at least one *other* color movie that same year). I wasn't enthralled with this film when I first saw it years ago but I have come to appreciate its epic presentation and gothic, almost soapy, storytelling. And the cast is entirely first-rate, from the leading lady (whose historical casting was a mini-series in itself) to the supporting roles (Hattie McDaniel, Thomas Mitchell, Ona Munson, Laura Crews, Ann Rutherford, Harry Davenport, Oscar Polk, 'Superman's' George Reeves, et al) to the hundreds (thousands?) of extras who populated the pre-and-postwar South (the tracking shot of the Twelve Oaks mansion at the start of the barbecue and the sprawling, widening shot of Scarlett walking amidst all the wounded soldiers come to mind). It is a great script ("Waste always makes me angry;" "Do you ever shy away from marrying men you don't love?") and great direction (Victor Fleming, George Cukor, and Sam Wood- anyone else?). It is a record-holder of sorts among Oscar nominated (or Oscars won) films, but it came out in an extraodrinary year of films. 1939 also saw the releases of, among others, GOODBYE MR. CHIPS, DARK VICTORY, THE OLD MAID, GUNGA DIN, ALEXANDER GRAHAM BELL, JUAREZ, ON BORROWED TIME, THE WOMEN, GULLIVER'S TRAVELS, AT THE CIRCUS, BABES IN ARMS, THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME, LOVE AFFAIR, MADE FOR EACH OTHER, and THE WIZARD OF OZ.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Lesley Howard is brilliant and a strong character
    In his role of Scarlett O'Hara's (initially) true secret love. I had been a fan of Mr. Howard's for many years. His performance here is among his finest. Also check him out in The Petrified Forrest. As for the rest of the film. When he's not in it it's a little strong on the romantic side.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Worth Another Look for this Fan of Classic Film
    Gone with the Wind creates many strong opinions, but I daresay many of them by people who haven't seen the film, or at least not in many years. It is sort of an amalgamation of both Margaret Mitchell's book and a reworking of DW Griffith's even more controversial silent blockbuster Birth of a Nation.

    I had written this off as a silly commercialized Hollywood fairly tale but recently decided to give it another look. Basically, I think the claims of racism are far overblown, especially compared to other films of this era. It seems to me that Selznick and company went to great pains to stamp out the more overtly racist themes of Griffith's famous 1915 film. For instance, Scarlett's attempted rapists were all white; real black actors have menial but still important roles; those black actors are treated with dignity and respect; and finally the "n" word probably more frequent in southern parlance of the day was replaced with the more delicate term of "darky", and never used in a scornful fashion. And while establishment opinion in the North still clings to belief that the Civil War was a most noble and unselfish effort, the truth was something much less certain. Surely slaves in the prewar South were not all treated as gingerly as in this film; but just as certainly they were also brutally repressed in the North as well (just watch Gangs of New York for a history lesson on Northern feelings towards African Americans). All wars have a side people would rather forget, and this one was certainly no different. Also on the positive side, the film does a good job of capturing this broad historic period with smart scenes amidst well designed sets. It's really quite a grand production, in color no less, with a marvelous historical and cinematic scope.

    On the less positive side, the heralded performances I think are a bit overrated. Clark Gable's presence helps considerably, but he is certainly not nearly as natural or comfortable as he was in It Happened One Night. And Mitchell's sappy, soap operaesque story frequently slips nearly into the preposterous, especially in latter scenes of the film when the historic takes a back seat to the dramatic. But maybe that's what gave the film its broad appeal, as it has a little of something for everyone. I think another factor may have really launched its success: released during the cold winter of 1939, its four-hour sitting time gave depression-weary Americans a warm night on the town for a cheap price that they could all afford.

    Regarding the standard edition DVD, its very serviceable but the extras are appallingly poor for a film of this esteemed history. Also, Spanish subtitles would have been nice (only has English and French).

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Best of the Best
    A total classic...everyone should own this film. ... Read more


    5. Drums Along the Mohawk
    Director: John Ford
    list price: $19.98
    our price: $19.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6301798708
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 2673
    Average Customer Review: 4.38 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (13)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Relatively Early, Excellent John Ford Movie
    Relatively early, I say, because I think Ford really hit his stride in the 1940s once he started his John Wayne cavalry pictures.

    "Drums Along the Mohawk" is a wonderful treatment of an era curiously left alone by most American movie studios, the Revolutionary War. Henry Fonda is a farmer on the Mohawk River in upstate NY, who brings home a "city" bride, Claudette Colbert. Much of the early part of the film is her adaptation to this backwoods life, so different from her father's home. Colbert's character is emblematic of the original settlers of the American continent, who left familiar ways behind them and set off into an adventure undreamed of. Bit by bit, her citified ways have to be jettisoned if she is to be a good wife to her honest and plain-speaking husband. Gradually their smaller domestic drama is engulfed in community concerns as the Revolutionary War whips up the warpath of the Indians surrounding the colonists, and they must fight for their very existence as that new concept, Americans.

    There are some really pricless episodes in "Drums Along the Mohawk", such as when Fonda holds his newborn baby for the first time, Colbert goes into hysterics at her first encounter with an Indian, Edna May Oliver confronts Indian braves invading the sanctity of her home, and someone has to get word out of the beseiged fort to the soldiers for relief.

    You'll be very glad to see "Drums Along the Mohawk", I assure you.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Revolutionary War classic
    Drums Along the Mohawk is a very good movie about a period in American history that not many movies have been made about. Set during the Revolutionary War, the story is about two newlyweds and their new life in the Mohawk Valley. The couple is trying to establish themselves with a home and farm of their own, but are interrupted when the British and the Mohawk Indian tribe begin to raid all along the valley. The settlers must deal with the raiding Indians while also trying to survive. There is plenty here for fans of Henry Fonda also. The action scenes are excellent, especially the attack on the fort. However, it is also very effective when the characters talk about a battle and how horrible it was rather than the viewer actually seeing it. An enjoyable film that is still very good!

    Henry Fonda and Claudette Colbert play Gil and Lana Martin, the newlywed couple struggling to survive. Both are very good and believable as husband and wife. This was a good period for Fonda when he made The Grapes of Wrath around this time. There is an excellent supporting cast, most notably Ward Bond as Adam, Gil's friend and neighbor, Edna Mae Oliver as the widow Mrs. McLenard, who puts up Gil and Lana when their house is destroyed. She has some incredibly funny scenes especially when some marauding Indians invade her house, but she refuses to leave even as they drag her out on her bed. This is an excellent movie with a great cast and excellent story. Do not miss this Revolutionary War classic!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Still the best movie about the American Revolution ever made
    There are relatively few movies about the American Revolution. I think this is due to the fact that the American side lost most of the battles of that war. The battle at Saratoga, the surprise attack at Trenton, and the siege of Yorktown are part of the short list of American victories, and except for the occasion television movie or mini-series, they are rarely touched upon. Consequently, "Drums Along the Mohawk" remains the best of American movie about the revolution even though it was made before World War I and even though the redcoats are not really involved in the fight.

    "Drums Along the Mohawk" does not start off as a movie about the American Revolution. Instead it begins as a movie about settling the frontier, which, at that point, was upstate New York. The focus is on a pioneer couple, newlyweds, Gilbert (Henry Fonda) and Magdalena (Claudette Colbert), called Lana. Martin is a farmer who brings his bride to the Mohawk Valley where their home is burned out by Indians allied with the British. The couple are taken in by neighbors after that happens and Martin joins the militia, but the settlers are going to need more men than that to fight the Indians and save the fort from attack.

    Based on a novel by Walter D. Edmonds the screenplay for "Drums Along the Mohawk" is by Sonya Levien and Lamar Trotti, although William Faulkner worked on it without receiving credit as well. Edmonds' history novels were all set in upstate New York and "Drums Along the Mohawk" is about the warfare between the settlers and the Six Nations of the Iroquois allied with the British. The Battle of Oriskany in 1777, fought in a forest, was a American victory although their commander General Nicholas Herkimer (Ralph Imhof) died of his wounds in one of the moving scenes of the film.

    This was the third film that John Ford made in 1939, following "Stagecoach" with John Wayne and "Young Mr. Lincoln" with Fonda; his next film would be "The Grapes of Wrath." Colbert and Fonda are the stars, but they are upstaged by several members of the supporting case, such as Edna May Oliver as Mrs. McKlennar and Arthur Shields as the Reverend Rosenkrantz. The old lady has such an iron will that she can make Indians take her bed out, with her in it, while they are burning down her home, and the reverend has a memorable scene in which he eases the suffering of a tortured settler. Fonda is young and earnest, while Colbert comes to terms with what it means to be living on the American frontier in troubled times.

    More than anything else "Drums Along the Mohwawk" is about people coming to the realization that they are Americans, an interpretation more than amply justified by the film's final scene. These are not the Sons of Liberty living in Boston and dealing with the King's troops and all those burdensome taxes. These are small families living out on the frontier for whom the idea of the United States of America was as odd as a flag with thirteen red and white stripes with a circle of white stars on a blue field. Perhaps it is because it takes place off the main stage that "Drums Along the Mohawk" manages to hit the right notes.

    5-0 out of 5 stars five star films
    Put it out on DVD and I will definitely buy it! How much longer do we have to wait to see some of Miss Colbert's other great work, especially those wonderful comedies like The Egg and I and No Time For Love, made available and on DVD?

    4-0 out of 5 stars Lavish colour production from Hollywood's Golden Age
    "Drums Along the Mohawk" was one of many lavish classic productions released in 1939 and marked the first real venture by Director John Ford into classic movie status. This production is lavish in all departments from the lush colour photography which even in 1939 was still only employed on a handful of productions, to the beautiful on location photography utilised throughout the story, to the many exciting action filled sequences employed around which the storyline is structured.

    "Drums Along the Mohawk" tells the rather simple story of Mohawk Valley farmer Gilbert Martin who courts and marries refined city bred Lana Magdalena (Claudette Colbert)and brings her back to the valley to begin a new life as a farmer's wife in the untamed American wilderness. What ensures is a story of hardship in the face of the unpredictable environment, attacks from Indians, the revolutinary war, and in carving out a new world and new way of life. Much of the story focuses on Claudette's characters efforts to adjust to this strange and foreign new environment and to make a home for her new husband and she succeeds admirably in the task. It has often been stated by critics that Claudette was far more suited to sophisticated urban comedies and always looked far too modern a screen personality to fit into period productions. While she certainly had no peer in that area she is highly effective in historical roles as witnessed by her great work in "Cleopatra" and "The Sign of the Cross". In "Mohawk" she displays all the fear and uncertainity of moving to a new land and leaving behind her all that is familiar. While her makeup and pristine outfits throughout tells us this is indeed a Hollywood production I believe it is one of her more appealing performances combining equal measures of doubt about what she has done moving to the wilderness, to a longing to build a happy life with her husband. Henry Fonda an actor who I normally find fairly bland and unexciting on screen performs very well in this production playing the role of Gilbert who works like ten men to clear his property, often under very trying circumstances, and set up a workable farm with which to support his family.

    Claudette Colbert by 1939 was at the peak of her popularity and success and that same year turned out what I feel was her greatest film performance in the classic "Midnight". At the time of release of this film Henry Fonda was also enjoying a triumph in "Jesse James" with Tyrone Power so it was easy to see why this film was also a great success upon release. As with most Epic productions of this type the supporting cast adds greatly to the overraul impact of a film and "Drums Along the Mohawk" had two of the best in Edna May Oliver and John Carradine. Oliver a superb character actress had the important role of Mrs. McKlennar and the character embodies all the standard qualities that she always brought to her film roles, a no nonsense flinty character with a deep down heart of Gold. Her big scene where her home is invaded by rampaging Indians is a delight to witness as she almost bosses them out of destroying her home! John Carradine a regular performer in these Fox productions is also effective in the devious role of Caldwell who is out to further his own ends no matter what it takes.

    The beautifully staged action sequences of this film are terrific and really add to the excitement of the piece. The attack on the fort and the destruction of the farmers properties are two of the highlights and are staged to the maximum effect that only John Ford could bring to such things.

    Overraul "Drums Along the Mohawk" is an engrossing piece of cinema both from its more personal representations of settlers moving into a hostile land and making a new life, to the standard excitement of the action western type of film complete with Indians, besieged forts and spectacular scenery. In all these respects "Drums Along the Mohawk will not fail to both impress and entertain. ... Read more


    6. Hondo
    Director: John Farrow
    list price: $19.98
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    Asin: 6303192254
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 502
    Average Customer Review: 4.21 out of 5 stars
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    Although scarcely seen in its original 3-D, and entirely out of sight for a decade and a half after its producer-star died, Hondo has maintained a high rep among John Wayne fans--and it wasn't even directed by Howard Hawks or John Ford. (Actually, Ford did shoot some second-unit stuff while visiting Wayne on location.) Half-breed Hondo, companioned only by an antisocial dog, tends to be more sympathetic toward the Apaches than toward the white society he occasionally scouts for. He falls into uneasy friendship with a New Mexico farmwoman (Geraldine Page) whose husband deserts her for long stretches, and whose son (Lee Aaker) is blood brother to the local Apache chieftain. A good, spare frontier tale--Louis L'Amour via James Edward (Angel and the Badman) Grant--in which danger and solace come in unexpected ways. John Farrow, who did direct, brings it in at a lean 84 minutes. Page was Oscar®-nominated for this first film role. --Richard T. Jameson ... Read more

    Reviews (24)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Even John Wayne can't save this movie
    Hondo has all the makings of a fine movie....great actors and an interesting story line. Unfortunately, it falls short. John Wayne gives a good performance as Hondo Lane, a half-breed Apache turned gunfighter turned Army dispatch rider. However, director John Farrow should have been tortured by the Apaches for turning what could have been a great film into little more than a typical western movie matinee. The scenes are choppy and a couple leave you wondering why they weren't left on the editing floor. Also typical western movie flaws -- John Wayne carrying a 94 Winchester lever action more than twenty years before it was introduced, people setting up horse and cattle ranches on land that could barely support a few goats, Indians patiently waiting for the settlers to circle their wagons and then riding around them like targets at a shooting gallery, and the inside of Geraldine Page's cabin looking like a photo spread from Ladies Home Journal. And speaking of neatness (as one other reader's review accurately pointed out), everything looks too clean. Only actor Ward Bond as Buffalo Baker looked the part. Comments on accuracy aside, this movie gets only two stars for three reasons - bad direction, bad direction, bad direction!

    4-0 out of 5 stars An effective western.
    Based on a Louis L'Armour novel this movie contains a pretty standard western plot: a frontier scout risks his life during an Indian uprising. It is notable for the fact this is one of those John Wayne films that is rarely shown on TV, and only became available on video four or five years ago. It also is a western that marks the development of a more sympathetic attitude towards the American Indians by Hollywood. Make no mistake the Duke and the cavalry are presented as the good guys; but their opponents, the Apaches, fight because the whites broke the treaty. The Apache leader,Victorio, mourns the loss of his sons killed by whites, and even Duke's Hondo remarks that the Apache way is a "good way of life."

    I have to agree with an earlier review that the direction is a little spotty. The screen sometimes blacks out between scenes which gives the impression that the film is about to go into a commericial break! However, the action scenes are fantastic especially the Duke's barroom brawl, the blood-right duel, and the thrilling chase from the Apaches. The ending, though, is cliched with the settlers circling their wagons and the Apaches obligingly riding around them just begging to be shot. Overall, this is a very entertaining, and fast-paced western.

    5-0 out of 5 stars John Wayne's forgotten western classic
    This exciting and colorful 3D film was released over 50 years ago and remains an enjoyable action adventure today. With its distinctive peppermint-striped titles, "Hondo" is John Wayne's film and he is the title character who rides out of the desert to come to the aid of a young woman and her boy at their isolated ranch against the backdrop of Apache smoke signals and war drums. Hondo Lane is drawn to the plain yet steely Angie Lowe who is also interested in the dusty stranger but refuses to leave her ranch, instead choosing to wait for her ne'er-do-well husband who has abandoned them to their fate in Apache land. The film has a matter-of-fact approach in the relationship between Lane and Angie, and although there is tension between them in the beginning, Angie is convinced of the stranger's sincerity and is keenly aware that Johnny enjoys the man's presence on their ranch. Johnny's character is a key part of the film's plot as both Lane and Apache leader Vittorio seek to guide him towards manhood with the values of their very different social mores. The Apaches are presented as a fierce but proud people, as personified by Vittorio, who adopts Johnny as a blood brother because of the bravery and courage he displays in protecting his mother from the menacing sub-chief Silva. The battle scenes are exciting and colorful, with the blue and yellow cavalry colors contrasting with the dusty, brown-skinned calico-shirted warriors mounted on all manner of striking ponies against bright blue skies and thick, fluffy clouds. The sound effects during the battles, of whistling bullets and whizzing arrows striking their targets, are realistic and superb. The movie was filmed in Camargo, Mexico, an arid desert country studded with isolated, cone-shaped mesas, and the music score has a heroic quality that smoothly underscores the action sequences.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Hondo Rules
    As the great Al Bundy said "Your life is meaningless compared to Hondo"

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great flick...but this is a flat print of a 3-D movie
    HONDO is an excellent western, featuring terrific performances by Wayne and Geraldine Page. The VHS release in welcome, but the film is compromised a bit here since it is robbed of the original stereoscopic 3-D presentation. It is one of the better 3-D movies (in fact, the only one to win an Oscar (G.Page).

    Don't confuse the awful red/blue 3-D TV showings in the early 90's with the original polarized (clear glasses) 3-D...it isn't the same thing at all and the TV version looked nothing like the original 3-D did.

    Try to catch this one at a 3-D revival sometime, to experience the movie as intended. ... Read more


    7. Amadeus
    Director: Milos Forman
    list price: $8.93
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    Asin: 0790734060
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 1881
    Average Customer Review: 4.52 out of 5 stars
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    The satirical sensibilities of writer Peter Shaffer and director Milos Forman (One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest) were ideally matched in this Oscar-winning movie adaptation of Shaffer's hit play about the rivalry between two composers in the court of Austrian Emperor Joseph II--official royal composer Antonio Salieri (F. Murray Abraham), and the younger but superior prodigy Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Tom Hulce). The conceit is absolutely delicious: Salieri secretly loathes Mozart's crude and bratty personality, but is astounded by the beauty of his music. That's the heart of Salieri's torment--although he's in a unique position to recognize and cultivate both Mozart's talent and career, he's also consumed with envy and insecurity in the face of such genius. That such magnificent music should come from such a vulgar little creature strikes Salieri as one of God's cruelest jokes, and it drives him insane. Amadeus creates peculiar and delightful contrasts between the impeccably re-created details of its lavish period setting and the jarring (but humorously refreshing and unstuffy) modern tone of its dialogue and performances--all of which serve to remind us that these were people before they became enshrined in historical and artistic legend. Jeffrey Jones, best-known as Ferris Bueller's principal, is particularly wonderful as the bumbling emperor (with the voice of a modern midlevel businessman). The film's eight Oscars include statuettes for Best Director Forman, Best Actor Abraham (Hulce was also nominated), Best Screenplay, and Best Picture. --Jim Emerson ... Read more

    Reviews (363)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Rock Me Amadeus
    Milos Forman's Amadeus is a hugely entertaining adaptation of Peter Shaffer's play. The movie is told in flashback style from the memory of Antonio Salieri. Salieri was a successful and popular composer who was a rival of Mozart's. History has speculated on the death of Mozart and some people are of the opinion that Salieri had a hand in his death (possibly even murdered him). The film explores this angle of the legend. Salieri is consumed by his jealousy and hatred of the infantile Mozart. Mozart is a musical genius, but a wild spending and is always looking for the next good time. His operas are utterly brilliant, but are unsuccessful. He is in constant debt. Salieri concocts a plan for Mozart to compose a requiem. This work is actually planned as Mozart's own requiem. Mozart is shown as slowly going mad and at the end of the film, Salieri helps him by writing the musical score down for a very weak Mozart. The morning after Mozart and Salieri work together, Mozart is found dead and we are left speculating whether he died through natural causes or if Salieri did something to him. F. Murray Abrham is absolutely amazing as Salieri. He brings across the jealousy and hatred, but doesn't make Salieri a fiend. He has major respect for Mozart's musical talents, but doesn't understand why God would give them to such an obvious heathen. Tom Hulce is equally as good as Mozart. He plays him with a reckless abandon and in an over the top fashion that is perfectly suited for the role. The film took home the 1984 Best Picture Oscar, Mr. Forman won Best Director and Mr. Abrham beat out Mr. Hulce for Best Actor. This was a case where a tie would have been more than appropriate. The new director's cut adds 20 minutes of footage, but the real standout is the remastered sound. The Dolby 5.1 version brings alive the sounds of Mozart in brilliant detail.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Memorable cinematic achievement gets a new look
    I was way too young to have seen AMADEUS in its original cinematic release (unfortunately), but it's not hard to see why it not only took home the Best Picture Oscar, but caused a rebirth of "Mozart mania". The story, although fictionalized, is an intriguing one. Salieri, the pious man who prayed to God to be given sublime musical talent, has to face the fact that God has given it to Mozart, who is exuberant, childish, and bawdy. Salieri's subsequent jealousy drives the entire movie. You can see his character becoming more and more consumed by his extremely negative feelings. The character of Mozart, on the other hand, is fun, even though the real Mozart wasn't really that over-the-top. I might add, however, that the distinguishing giggle is actually historically accurate. Listen to the commentary on the DVD and Peter Shaffer himself even mentions something to that effect. Although it was delightful to see the film in its entirety, I could see why some of the scenes were deleted. They simply weren't that strong or they distracted the viewer from the main focus. The only real complaint I had was that there weren't more extras. It does have the commentary, the original trailer, and the short featurette which consists of various people looking back at making the film, but I would have liked to have seen an actual "making of" documentary from around the time the film was being made. Overall, though, a worthy addition to any movie collection.

    5-0 out of 5 stars a mythical, fabulous portrait of genius
    Peter Shaffer wrote the "Amadeus" screenplay based on his play, which is a quirky, fanciful vision of Mozart and Salieri, and how God gave Mozart the gift of musical genius despite his character flaws, but bypassed Salieri, who tried to strike a deal with the Almighty, vowing pious devotion, if He would only grant him brilliance and fame.
    F. Murray Abraham is marvelous portraying Salieri's pride and envy, and having to suffer the indignity of mediocrity; the part garnered him a Best Actor Oscar and a Golden Globe, among other awards, and as Mozart, Tom Hulce is stupendous, with his high pitched raucous giggle, fluffy wigs, and energetic appeal.
    Others in the cast of note are Elizabeth Berridge, excellent as Mozart's wife Constanza, and Roy Dotrice as his stern father Leopold.

    The biggest star of the film however, is the music...the glorious sounds of Mozart's operas, and his magnificent Requiem. Many of my favorite scenes are depicted, from the ballet music from "The Marriage of Figaro", to "Don Giovanni a cenar teco", as well as portions of "The Marriage of Figaro", "The Magic Flute", and much more.
    Some of the great voices heard are Samuel Ramey (Figaro), Richard Stilwell (Count Almaviva / Don Giovanni), June Anderson (Queen of the Night), Brian Kay (Papageno) and Gillian Fisher (Papagena), though the parts on screen are played by actors, and not those singing.

    Twyla Tharp's choreography is fresh and exhilarating, Miroslav Ondricek's cinematography is exquisite, and Milos Forman's direction imaginative and well paced.
    As well as Best Actor, the Academy bestowed Oscars for Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Art Direction/Set Decoration, Best Costume Design, Best Makeup, Best Sound, all well deserved.
    Total running time is 160 minutes.

    5-0 out of 5 stars As close to "perfect' as a movie can get
    When I saw this movie in its original release in 1984, it was only due to the fact that I was dragged to the theatre. (A movie about Mozart -- BORING!!) I have never been so quick to change my mind. From the opening moments, hearing F. Murray Abraham shout out the word "MOZART" I was hooked, and my eyes never waivered from the screen. I anxiously awaited the release of this Director's Cut, due primarly to the extras that were purported to be included. The extras more than deliver on their promise.

    Not only did I get the joy of watching once again one of the best movies to have ever been released -- to remember how enthralled I was by the performances of Tom Hulce, F. Murray Abraham and Elizabeth Berridge (unfortunately, most reviewers tend to exclude her contribution to this movie, but her performance as Constanza, Mozart's wife, is as powerful as the others) -- but the extras (behind the scenes, the commentaries) added to my delight.

    I truly find it hard to put into words how wonderful this movie is. I have spent the last 20 years telling people "Trust me, just watch it, and you will understand what I am talking about." It is more than just a grand journey through the worlds of these two men (yes, granted, told from a "movie" point-of-view). The entire package, from the scenery, the costumes, the story and THE MUSIC, THE MUSIC, THE MUSIC!!! shows you how a movie should and can be produced. Even if you can't stand classical music, you will adore the wonder that is Mozart.

    Please -- I'm begging you -- WATCH THIS MOVIE. You will NOT be disappointed!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Love it, warts and all
    I loved "Amadeus" the first time I saw it and every time thereafter, on tape, DVD and now in this DVD package. It is a very great film, exceptionally worthy of its Oscars, and the role of a lifetime for Tom Hulse. The operatic and musical scenes in this film succeed on a scale never seen before. The finale of "Don Giovanni" is better in this movie than in the two live performances I've seen and the performance Herbert von Karajan led that was shown on PBS in 1990. The direction, acting, script and locations are all sumptuous. It apparently does not follow the play on which it is based, but artistic difference is the basis of enjoyment. Having said all this, I would caution viewers not to judge the real-life Mozart by the portrayal of Hulse in this film. The real Mozart, I have read, was a prudish workaholic that would never go out drinking with his buddies. He also played by the rules of the day and adored Salieri, respecting his role as the musical director in Vienna. Still, it's fair to set history aside in a work of art this fine. Anyone that likes great music or great movies will enjoy this. ... Read more


    8. Fort Apache
    Director: John Ford
    list price: $4.95
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    Asin: B00004RFF8
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 1558
    Average Customer Review: 4.59 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (17)

    5-0 out of 5 stars "IF YOU SAW THEM, THEY WEREN'T APACHE,"
    is arguably one of The Duke's best lines (Michael Herr referenced it in his Vietnam War best seller DISPATCHES, making it a prophecy). John Ford's cavalry trilogy is a great body of American film, all three works have their individual moments that distingush their own lasting perfection. FORT APACHE has the classic Ford/Wayne elements: action, dialogue, a great supporting cast both Ford and Wayne knew how to play (Ward Bond, Victor McLaglen). Henry Fonda is brilliant as the pompous, ego maniacal Colonel Thursday and Victor McLaglen's drunken buffonery is classic. FORT APACHE is a ride into film greatness.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A great American film
    Director John Ford's first entry in his "cavalry trilogy" is this excellent film about life on a military outpost far from the glamorous theaters of the Indian Wars in the American west. The film is about character development of the officers and enlisted men on the post, family relationships and the class distinctions among the military social order. Henry Fonda dominates this film with a wonderful interpretation of a bitter, unhappy colonel who feels he has been shunted aside by an ungrateful military hierarchy to an isolated desert outpost to fight Apaches, an assignment he considers beneath him. John Wayne's Capt. Kirby York gives the film just the right balance between the two men who have very different viewpoints about fighting Apaches and respect for their fierce adversaries. The concerns of the wives of officers and enlisted men are also explored in the daily routine at Fort Apache and their fears are touchingly portrayed as their men march at dawn one morning to do battle with Cochise's warriors in an attempt to force the venerable chief to return to a reservation that is run by a corrupt, morally bankrupt Indian agent. The original black and white print is superb and is much better than the colorized version available on video. Richard Hageman's music is reflective and melancholy.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This Ford still works.
    I'm out of my element with this film. I normally don't review black-and-white classics, because I'm too cynical to view the big studio releases of yesteryear with an open mind. All of them are contrived and somewhat sappy; I watch them and envision a cherubic Mickey Rooney looking on while eating chocolate chip cookies and drinking milk. "That's a swell show, Dad!"

    But I like John Ford films. And I really like FORT APACHE, despite the movie being a stereotypical product of its time. Why, you ask (or mutter indifferently)? Because this film actually depicts some range for Henry Fonda and the Duke himself. Fonda plays a very unsympathetic role, while John Wayne steps out of character (for him) to play a compassionate second fiddle. And Ford's experiment works: the two actors pull off exceptional performances; their on-screen chemistry is riveting.

    Tension--that's the motor that drives FORT APACHE. A new disciplined, disgruntled, by-the-book colonel (Fonda) arrives at a remote Arizona outpost; immediately, he is at odds with the fort's seasoned and weathered captain (Wayne). The captain, who possesses a deep respect for a band of Apache that has left the reservation, has the loyalty and affection of his men; the colonel is looked upon as an unwelcome intruder and resented as a martinet. The two officers wage a battle of wills that ultimately has Fonda using an unsuspecting Wayne as a ploy to draw the Apache back for a surprise attack--a strategy that produces deadly consequences.

    This is good stuff, further enhanced by some outstanding supporting roles, including Ward Bond, Pedro Armendariz, and Victor McLaglen. We're even treated to a grown-up--yet still annoying--Shirley Temple. Kudos to John Ford for creating a good-looking film that successfully had Fonda and Wayne step outside their respective boxes. FORT APACHE, despite its "Aw, shucks" big studio smarm, is solid entertainment.
    --D. Mikels

    4-0 out of 5 stars Four and a half stars, actually...
    A truly excellent western, one of the all-time greats; the only reason it's not a full 5 stars is there are a few which are marginally better, such as "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon" and "Shane".
    Both Henry Fonda and John Wayne are cast against type here, and both prove what great actors they are. Fonda plays a stubborn, excessively proud army commander (loosely based on General George Armstrong Custer) furious at being sent to an outpost in Arizona to fight the Apache, complaining they're not even the "tough" Indians. Wayne is a looser, kinder man more adjusted to living in the middle of nowhere, beloved by his men, and holding much more respect for the Apache since he's dealt with them many times. Fonda insists on using the Apache's trust of Wayne against them, luring them into a trap to force them back onto the reservation. Wayne does his best to stop it, but the forces are already at work and there's little he can do. The ensuing massacre (remember, this tale is based on the exploits of Custer) leaves Wayne with the dilemma: tell the truth about Fonda, or go along with the typical "national-hero" myth that has developed around his death?
    This is not your typical western. The cavalry aren't the bad guys (as they would be portrayed 40 years later in "Dances With Wolves"), but the Indians aren't exactly the bad guys, either. Their treatment on the reservation at the hands of a corrupt American government, providing them with scant food to survive but plenty of rotgut whiskey to demoralize and destroy them, is clearly presented. The Indians (portrayed here mostly by Mexican actors) are justifiably angry as their trust in "the great white father" is betrayed over and over. They are presented as intelligent strategists; they offer Fonda a legitimate chance to sit down and talk, but when they're betrayed yet again they go on the offense and, incredibly, they don't lose the fight. This was a western far ahead of its time, and since it was directed by the great John Ford it isn't just a moral tract: it's a beautifully-photographed and expertly-acted drama that pulls you in and teaches you something at the same time. Great stuff.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A wonderful movie
    This was the greatest movie! Anyone would like it~! I would tell anyone/everyone to see it! You should add this great one to your westerns! ... Read more


    9. The Grapes of Wrath
    Director: John Ford
    list price: $9.98
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    Asin: 6301797906
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 2505
    Average Customer Review: 4.22 out of 5 stars
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    Ranking No. 21 on the American Film Institute's list of the 100 greatest American films, this 1940 classic is a bit dated in its noble sentimentality, but it remains a luminous example of Hollywood classicism from the peerless director of mythic Americana, John Ford. Adapted by Nunnally Johnson from John Steinbeck's classic novel, the film tells a simple story about Oklahoma farmers leaving the depression-era dustbowl for the promised land of California, but it's the story's emotional resonance and theme of human perseverance that makes the movie so richly and timelessly rewarding. It's all about the humble Joad family's cross-country trek to escape the economic devastation of their ruined farmland, beginning when Tom Joad (Henry Fonda) returns from a four-year prison term to discover that his family home is empty. He's reunited with his family just as they're setting out for the westbound journey, and thus begins an odyssey of saddening losses and strengthening hopes. As Ma Joad, Oscar-winner Jane Darwell is the embodiment of one of America's greatest social tragedies and the "Okie" spirit of pressing forward against all odds (as she says, "because we're the people"). A documentary-styled production for which Ford and cinematographer Gregg Toland demanded painstaking authenticity, The Grapes of Wrath is much more than a classy, old-fashioned history lesson. With dialogue and scenes that rank among the most moving and memorable ever filmed, it's a classic among classics--simply put, one of the finest films ever made. --Jeff Shannon ... Read more

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    5-0 out of 5 stars Ford and Fonda do justice to Steinbeck
    Take John Steinbeck's Pulitzer-Prize-Winning Novel. Turn it into a movie and let John Ford direct it, and get Henry Fonda to star. In 1940 you could hardly find a more certain recipe for a cinema classic.

    As good as the film is, it really should be a companion-piece to Steinbeck's original masterpiece, and if you haven't read it I recommend setting aside enough time to read one of the greatest pieces of American literature ever written.

    That being said, the medium of the cinema allows for a visual impact that can't be matched with the written word.

    The Grapes of Wrath follows the Joad family during the great depression. That period of economic hardship hit the farmers in Oklahoma a little harder than the rest of the world, at the time of the dust bowl the "Okies" were at the end of their ropes, financially speaking.

    Thousands of Okies packed up the house after being foreclosed and moved out to California - many winding up around Bakersfield, at the California end of old US Route 66. (Merle Haggard's family did so and the "Okie from Muscogee" wrote about it in songs like "California Cottonfields".)

    Anyway, this is the historical context of the movie. The theme of the movie, and of Steinbeck's book, is the ability of the human spirit to remain intact in these worst of times. The Joads suffer terrible humiliations, one after another, most of them because of their desperate financial status. But as the story proceeds we see that they are fundamentally decent, hard-working people, and every time life knocks them down they get back up, brush the dirt off themselves, and keep moving forward. As a national characteristic, this was an important trait because this was the generation that produced the hard-working, high-minded individuals who did important things like win World War II, followed by America's greatest financial flourishing and the Baby Boom. Tom Brokaw called them "America's Greatest Generation".

    The cast is picture-perfect, with Henry Fonda as the spirited Tom Joad and John Carradine as the former preacher with a new social consciousness. Jane Darwell won a well-deserved Best Supporting Actress Award as Ma Joad, and the remainder of the cast is in every way equal to the story and the film.

    5-0 out of 5 stars An American Classic
    This is a great movie based on a great novel, and I am surprised by how honestly the film captures the raw humanity of the book. Steinbeck weaved social commentary into the story, and the movie makes many points about the human condition and spirit without being heavy-handed. The story of the Joads and their fight for survival rings very true, thanks to the realistic performances and the atmosphere created by director John Ford. Henry Fonda gives one of the best performances I have ever seen him give, and his "I'll be there" speech is one of the great movie moments. Jane Darwell is also very impressive, and her direct, down-to-earth style of acting makes the quiet strength and the suffering of Ma Joad seem very real. The Grapes of Wrath is an American classic, both as a novel and as a film.

    5-0 out of 5 stars "I'll be all aroun' in the dark."
    "Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord. He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored; He hath loos'd the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword, His truth is marching on." - Battle Hymn of the Republic.

    In 1936, John Steinbeck wrote a series of articles about the migrant workers driven to California from the Midwestern states after losing their homes in the throes of the depression: inclement weather, failed crops, land mortgaged to the hilt and finally taken over by banks and large corporations when credit lines ran dry. Lured by promises of work aplenty, the Midwesterners packed their belongings and trekked westward to the Golden State, only to find themselves facing hunger, inhumane conditions, contempt and exploitation instead. "Dignity is all gone, and spirit has turned to sullen anger before it dies," Steinbeck described the result in one of his 1936 articles, collectively published as "The Harvest Gypsies;" and in another piece ("Starvation Under the Orange Trees," 1938) he asked: "Must the hunger become anger and the anger fury before anything will be done?"

    By the time he wrote the latter article, Steinbeck had already published one novel addressing the agricultural laborers' struggle against corporate power ("In Dubious Battle," 1936). Shortly thereafter he began to work on "The Grapes of Wrath," which was published roughly a year later. Although the book would win the Pulitzer Prize (1940) and become a cornerstone foundation of Steinbeck's Literature Nobel Prize (1962), it was sharply criticized upon its release - nowhere more so than in the Midwest - and still counts among the 35 books most frequently banned from American school curricula: A raw, brutally direct, yet incredibly poetic masterpiece of fiction, it continues to touch nerves deeply rooted in modern society's fabric; including and particularly in California, where yesterday's Okies are today's undocumented Mexicans - Chicano labor leader Cesar Chavez especially pointed out how well he could empathize with the Joad family, because he and his fellow workers were now living the same life they once had.

    Having fought hard with his publisher to maintain the novel's uncompromising approach throughout, Steinbeck was weary to give the film rights to 20th Century Fox, headed by powerful mogul and, more importantly, known conservative Daryl F. Zanuck. Yet, Zanuck and director John Ford largely stayed true to the novel: There is that sense of desperation in farmer Muley's (John Qualen's) expression as he tells Tom and ex-preacher Casy (Henry Fonda and John Carradine) how the "cats" came and bulldozed down everybody's homes, on behalf of a corporate entity too intangible to truly hold accountable. There is Grandpa Joad (Charley Grapewin), literally clinging to his earth and dying of a stroke (or, more likely, a broken heart) when he is made to leave against his will. There is everybody's brief joy upon first seeing Bakersfield's rich plantations - everybody's except Ma Joad's (Jane Darwell's), that is, who alone knows that Grandma (Zeffie Tilbury) died in her arms before they even started to cross the Californian desert the previous night. There is the privately-run labor camps' utter desolation, complete with violent guards, exploitative wages, lack of food and unsanitary conditions; contrasted with the relative security and more humane conditions of the camps run by the State. And there is Tom's crucial development from a man acting alone to one seeing the benefit of joining efforts in a group, following Casy's example, and his parting promise to Ma that she'll find him everywhere she looks - wherever there is injustice, struggle, and people's joint success. In an overall outstanding cast, which also includes Dorris Bowdon (Rose of Sharon), Eddie Quillan (Rose's boyfriend Connie), Frank Darien (Uncle John) and a brief appearance by Ward Bond as a friendly policeman, Henry Fonda truly shines as Tom; despite his smashing good looks fully metamorphosized into Steinbeck's quick-tempered, lanky, reluctant hero.

    Yet, in all its starkness the movie has a more optimistic slant than the novel; due to a structural change which has the Joads moving from bad to acceptable living conditions (instead of vice versa), the toning down of Steinbeck's political references - most importantly, the elimination of a monologue using a land owner's description of "reds" as anybody "that wants thirty cents and hour when we're payin' twenty-five" to show that under the prevalent conditions that definition applies to virtually *every* migrant laborer - and a greater emphasis on Ma Joad's pragmatic, forward-looking way of dealing with their fate; culminating in her closing "we's the people" speech (whose direction, interestingly, Ford, who would have preferred to end the movie with the image of Tom walking up a hill alone in the distance, left to Zanuck himself). Jane Darwell won a much-deserved Academy-Award for her portrayal as Ma; besides John Ford's Best Director award the movie's only winner on Oscar night - none of its other five nominations scored, unfortunately including those in the Best Picture and Best Leading Actor categories, which went to Hitchcock's "Rebecca" and James Stewart ("The Philadelphia Story") instead. Still, despite its critical success - also expressed in a "Best Picture" National Board of Review award - and its marginally optimistic outlook, the movie engendered almost as much controversy as did Steinbeck's book. After the witch hunt setting in not even a decade later, today it stands as one of the last, greatest examples of a movie pulling no punches in the portrayal of society's ailments; a type of film regrettably rare in recent years.

    "Ev'rybody might be just one big soul - well it looks that-a way to me. ... Wherever men are fightin' for their rights, that's where I'm gonna be, ma. That's where I'm gonna be." - Woody Guthrie, "The Ballad of Tom Joad."

    "The highway is alive tonight, but nobody's kiddin' nobody about where it goes. I'm sittin' down here in the campfire light, with the ghost of old Tom Joad." - Bruce Springsteen, "The Ghost of Tom Joad."

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Grapes--and Apples and Oranges--of Wrath
    It's striking how many reviewers here base their comments on a simplisitic comparison between the film version of "The Grapes of Wrath" and the Steinbeck novel on which it was based. For many such a comparison seems to function simply as an excuse to proclaim the inherent superiority of the Steinbeck original--and, by extension, the superiority of their own literary taste values-- when all it really does is highlight the patent silliness of trying to pit different artforms into some sort of evaluative competition. Literature and cinema are two vastly different modes of representation each with their own strengths and limitations, so the framing question shouldn't be which version of "The Grapes of Wrath" is "better"--as if there were a universal yardstick with which to measure such things--but rather how do they perform in terms of their respective mediums? On that count, I think we are extraordinarily fortunate with both the Steinbeck and Ford versions of "The Grapes of Wrath" to have two masterworks that operate consummately at the peak of their respective artforms. What each does well, it does brilliantly. As a verbal medium that unfolds slowly, literature is good at offering rich, layered descriptions of person and place and mapping complicated narrative links and Steinbeck makes the most of this in his novel. Cinema, by contrast, is an expressive medium that works best through registers of visual and aural metaphor, allegory and performance...and it's on this ground that I think the film version of "The Grapes of Wrath" more than merits its classic status. It is a magnificently "cinematic" film that uses the expressive capacities of the medium to produce a richly layered experience that is truly moving and that lingers long afterward, sometimes for years or even a whole lifetime. I first saw "The Grapes of Wrath" on TV one rainy afternoon in my childhood and it left indelible impressions that have impelled me to go back to the film time and again: The haunted eyes of Jane Darwell's Ma Joad as she sits in the truck cabin, lit from beneath, driving into an uncertain future, the winds of history howling oustside; the terrifying collision montage as the monstrous "cats" move in to destroy the Okies' homes; the soulless gas station attendants, standing together in uniforms like corporatized automata, muttering that the Joads are too miserable to be human. It's a film dense with iconic richness and an enduring testament both to the artistry of the many workers that created it, and to the democratic spirit of popular cinema at its very best.

    5-0 out of 5 stars As good a restoration as possible
    This DVD restoration is probably as good as possible given that the original camera negative was lost. This is the one to get.

    By the way, there is NO widescreen version of "The Grapes of Wrath." This DVD release exhibits the full frame aspect ratio of the original (1.33 to 1 ratio). Essentially, films made between 1917 and 1952 were filmed with a full frame aspect ratio. Standard televisions were proportioned 4:3 to copy the standard cinema ratio. Widescreen (Cinemascope, etc) was a gimmick introduced by Hollywood in the 1950s to compete with television. So if a film was made between 1917 and 1952 don't go looking for a widescreen version of it because there isn't any! ... Read more


    10. Boys in the Band
    Director: William Friedkin
    list price: $29.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000006GST
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 4845
    Average Customer Review: 4.62 out of 5 stars
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    A sensitive yet humorous adaptation of the stage play, this 1970 film directed by William Friedkin (The French Connection, The Exorcist) is one of the first films to openly address gay issues in a matter-of-fact style that largely avoids stereotyping. Shot on one set and featuring a birthday party as the festive setting, a group of friends assemble to celebrate, reminisce, and discuss their lives and the travails of being gay, even as one friend insists he's straight. The night turns from a light celebration to a sometimes-vindictive ordeal of revelation and betrayal, as each man in turn must confess his true feelings. Performed by the original cast of the stage production, the film may feel dated to some, but it still manages to be truthful and entertaining as it explores a subject that to this day is not often addressed. --Robert Lane ... Read more

    Reviews (42)

    5-0 out of 5 stars 'I don't understand any of it... I never did' ... Michael
    Mart Crowley's 'The Boys in the Band' is a minor masterpiece of American cinema that was also instrumental in thrusting gay life and issues into the American mainstream.

    Based upon the 1968 Off-Broadway play, this 1970 film adaption by William Friedkin retains all of the stage cast and most of the dialogue. The story is simple enough, Michael Connelly is throwing a party for his friend Harold when an old college roommate, who is presumably straight, arrives and throws the party into turmoil. Michael, who clearly has had a drinking problem, hits the bottle again as a result of the conflict. Kenneth Nelson gives a brilliant performance as Michael who is quickly unravelling with every drink and who begins to tear down his friends one by one. The party climaxes in a 'truth' game which proves oddly cathartic to everyone but Michael.

    Many issues have arisen over the years with 'The Boys in the Band'. Were these men mostly stereotypes? Is this work still relevant to gay life? What does it say about where we are in light of where we've been?

    Your answers to these questions may well depend on your age. For myself, when first viewing this as a 22 year old in 1987, I found it amusing but ultimately sad and upsetting. A dozen years later of being out in gay life, I have come to learn how masterful this work is and that while times have changed in many ways for the better, many of the issues that the 'boys' were dealing with back then are still being dealt with today. Issues of religious and societal intolerance and the attempt to forge a positive gay identity in an often hostile world are still very much with us today.

    I believe the reason 'The Boys in the Band' is so humorous is that the camp humor of that time was largely a coping mechanism of sorts. This is black humor at its best, showing us the brutal honesty of a situation while exposing the many absurdities in it at the same time.

    In the end Michael states 'I don't understand any of it, I never did.'... food for thought...

    Also: Pick up a copy of '3 Plays by Mart Crowley'. The story of Michael Connelly pre and post "Boys in the Band" is powerfully explored in these two additional plays. (Read the forward 1st!)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A "Must" for all Gay Men
    As a friend once put it, the first time you see it (usually in college or freshly minted out-of-the-closet) you're horrified because it is full of self-loathing queens. The second time, in your twenties or after a bit moving in the stream of gay life, you're into it because it's campy and fun. The third time, once you've been around a block more times than you can remember, you love it because it's TRUE! While certainly not to be included in any catalogue of PRIDE-ful moments (and as such was the source of great controversy in the 1970s), this is a film that touches on crucial aspects of gay identity that have remained fairly constant in the post-Stonewall period, a series of questions: sexual and emotional fidelity, pride, self-hatred, fraternal destruction, and gay friendship. Or, another way to put it and to borrow Adrienne Rich's phraseology, "lies, secrets, and silence." The telephone game is the dramatic high point of the film (don't try this at home kids, unless you're three sheets to the wind and have an old rotary phone in the garage!), underscoring the complicated histories gay men bring to their desires. For others, this is the low point of self-loathing, but I find the actors rescue the scene with tenderness and emotive power. For me, the saving grace of the film and its central message is the denouement of Harold's committment to his friendship with the hideous lush Michael, who, after suffering a night of Michael's Gin and Ton witticisms honed to a razor sharp edge while languidly flipping through "The Films of Joan Crawford" (a nice touch), and after reading him within an inch of his life, tells Michael, with real feeling, "Call you tomorrow." And who can't appreciate friendship like that? With this, the film brings to the fore the essence of gay survival, which is friendship, and for that is worthy of viewing and LOVE (and a DVD).

    5-0 out of 5 stars What I am Michael...
    Exquisite movie--beautifully directed and smart acting by the cast. It's as if not more timely now than it was then.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Leading 20th Century Work
    I think "Boys in the Band" is one of the best plays of the 20th century. It's far, far more than a bunch of self-hating queens camping it up. For one thing, look at how succinctly the playwright develops his characters with just one line: "Cheese it. Here comes the socialite nun!"

    A better way to think about the play is as a tragedy concerning the emotional life of Michael, who exemplifies so many of killer competitor types of the 20th century.

    When Harold says to Michael, "You're a sad and pathetic man. You're a homosexual and you don't want to be," he's making a larger point that what Michael is really afraid of is his own humanity, not just being seen as a big fairy.

    5-0 out of 5 stars An Important Film on Humanity - Gay or Not
    Mart Crowley will always be remembered for this gem of a film (based on the stage play) because of its evocative and dead-on treatment of humanity, particularly that of gay men.

    The movie, like the stage play, is set in a New York City apartment. Seven gay men (and one gay prostitute) are going to be attending a bithday party hosted by Michael. As the film opens, we are visually introduced to the main characters. We then see Michael's smart and proper apartment and know that he is preparing for the party. Michael's weekend boyfriend Donald arrives and they talk about everything from anxiety attacks to financial woes to the effects of alcohol.

    Suddenly, everything is turned on its head as Michael gets a very odd and uncharacteristic phone call from his college roommate, Alan. Alan is in town and wants to meet up with Michael, but Michael isn't sure that Alan should arrive in the middle of a birthday party for gay men. Alan breaks down and begs to see Michael. They agree on a quick drink and Michael and Donald explore how they are going to handle a straight man at a gay party.

    Thinking the doorbell is Alan, Michael opens it to find that Emory, Hank and Larry have arrived. He tells them what is going on and then Bernard, another guest, arrives. Michael demands that everyone play it cool and straight while Alan is there.

    As the party gets underway with appetizers and music, Michael gets a phone call from Alan expressing regrets about his breakdown and suggests they get together for lunch the next day. Michael is relieved and the party starts to flow even better.

    Michael, Bernard, Emory, and Larry begin a dance routine they learned on Fire Island and don't hear the doorbell. When Hank answers the door, it isn't Harold, but Alan, who has dropped by unannounced. He sees Michael and the other men dancing and there is a grand uncomfortable moment as the party comes to a screeching halt.

    Alan and Michael talk and then as Alan gets ready to leave, a fight ensued between Alan and Emory with Emory ending up with a bloody face.

    The rest of the movie is a very real, very poignant look at human nature. There is an attempt to expose someone in the closet, a look at fidelity within a gay relationship, the fear of growing old and a wonderfully crafted discussion on the nature of beauty.

    Although all of the actors in the film are excellent, Cliff Gorman as the effiminate Emory steals the show. (Gorman, incidentially, would go on to portray Lenny Bruce in the stage play "Lenny" and would receive high acclaim for his work only to be replaced by Dustin Hoffman for the movie version.)

    What makes the film work for all mature audiences is that the character portrayals are seemless. We can all see some of our own faults in at least one of the characters.

    The only drawback is that this film is not yet out on DVD, although it should be!

    If you get a chance to see this film, do so. It is a very fine piece of film that deserves all the acclaim it gets. ... Read more


    11. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
    Director: Milos Forman
    list price: $6.93
    our price: $6.93
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0790734079
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 1233
    Average Customer Review: 4.74 out of 5 stars
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    One of the key movies of the 1970s, when exciting, groundbreaking, personal films were still being made in Hollywood, Milos Forman's One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest emphasized the humanistic story at the heart of Ken Kesey's more hallucinogenic novel.Jack Nicholson was born to play the part of Randle Patrick McMurphy, the rebellious inmate of a psychiatric hospital who fights back against the authorities' cold attitudes of institutional superiority, as personified by Nurse Ratched (Louise Fletcher).It's the classic antiestablishment tale of one man asserting his individuality in the face of a repressive, conformist system--and it works on every level. Forman populates his film with memorably eccentric faces, and gets such freshly detailed and spontaneous work from his ensemble that the picture sometimes feels like a documentary.Unlike a lot of films pitched at the "youth culture" of the 1970s, One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest really hasn't dated a bit, because the qualities of human nature that Forman captures--playfulness, courage, inspiration, pride, stubbornness--are universal and timeless.The film swept the Academy Awards for 1976, winning in all the major categories (picture, director, actor, actress, screenplay) for the first time since Frank Capra's It Happened One Night in 1931. --Jim Emerson ... Read more

    Reviews (207)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Tremendous Film With The Great Nicholson
    This is an unforgettable film. Jack Nicholson gives one hell of a classic and memorable performance in this film directed by the great Milos Forman. Nicholson plays Randall McMurphy, a rebel inmate of sorts at a psychiatric hospital who fights the system and refuses to give in the hospital's orders or behavior. It's a real groundbreaking film. Nicholson's main adversary is the cold Nurse Ratchett(great name!), played superbly by Louise Fletcher. A remarkable performance. There are also a number of familiar faces in the film. You will definitley recognize Christopher Lloyd, Danny DeVito, and Brad Douriff, as some of the inmates. Will Sampson also gives a memorable performance. There are scenes here that are truly shocking. Anyone who has seen this probably knows what I mean when I say that. All of our actors are dead on perfect as mentally unstable patients. A remarkable cast. The end scene of the film is shocking and definitley won't be forgotten. Go watch this classic film and see one of our biggest and best legends in an astonishing performance. This is deeply recommended!.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A disturbing movie about the disturbed.
    In this multi-Academy award winning flick based on Ken Kesey's novel, actor Jack Nicholson as jail-bird Randle P. McMurphy seeks escape from the prison work farm by feigning madness. He is committed to a psychiatric ward for the mentally disturbed for evaluation while the staff try to determine whether his behaviour is genuine insanity or mere rebellion. But being with the mentally ill isn't as rosy as McMurphy imagined it to be, particularly under the repressive regime operated by Nurse Ratched (Louise Fletcher). In the battle of mind-games with Ratched, McMurphy discovers that even a simple thing as watching the World Series is impossible, because it might disturb the patients' routine.

    Only three movies have ever taken out all five major Academy awards (Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, and Best Screenplay), and "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" is one of that elite group. To say that the acting is superb is an understatement. It takes a lot of talent to convincingly portray someone mentally disturbed, but this cast accomplishes it with brilliance. The supporting roles as nearly as terrific as the leading roles: Sydney Lassick as the shaky inarticulate Charlie Cheswick, Brad Dourif as the stuttering virgin Billy Bibbit, Danny DeVito as the infantile Martini, Christopher Lloyd as the wide-eyed trouble-maker Tabor, William Redfield as the eloquent intellectual Dale Harding, and Will Sampson as the mute Indian giant.

    But the mentally ill are depicted not merely as objects for examination and pity, but with genuine sympathy as victims under an oppressive regime. Admittedly they're also the source for warm humor; Highlights include McMurphy's commentary of an imaginary baseball game with all the "nuts" cheering, and McMurphy's creative introduction of all patients as "doctors" from the mental institution as they hijack a fishing boat. Those who work with the mentally disturbed in real life will be the first to tell you that you need a sense of humor in dealing with them. But humor doesn't exclude compassion, and this movie raises serious questions about the treatment of the mentally ill.

    Everything is geared towards arousing sympathy for the mentally disturbed: minimalist music and silence, dreary colors, bright lighting, and male care-givers who are police-like unnamed uniforms. These factors combine to create an atmosphere that conveys a clinical and sterile environment devoid of compassion for those who need it. Nurse Ratched is depicted as a cold and distant woman without feelings for those in her charge, and her authoritarian role personifies an establishment that cares little for the mentally ill. Rather than show compassion for the weak, she uses therapy sessions to uncover whatever hope and spirit they have and destroy it. McMurphy's embodiment of this human spirit is somewhat exaggerated (the way he initiates interest in basketball games and escapes on a fishing expedition is not entirely plausible), but it makes the point. Interestingly, some have seen the movie as a social criticism on all oppression of the human spirit, with a broad application even to ideologies like communism. As others have said: tyranny has many faces, and the story of freedom from oppression goes beyond the walls of a mental asylum.

    The criticism of the handling of the mentally ill is most evident in how the institution handles McMurphy. We identify with McMurphy because we know his insanity is faked, and yet the "treatment" he receives is thoroughly troubling, especially when those in charge resort to electric-shock therapy. Is there a parallel in the way that many social problems (eg depression, ADD) are today diagnosed as mental illnesses and treated with drugs? The tragic way in which McMurphy's "mental illness" is mishandled at the conclusion arouses righteous anger, and is a disturbing indictment on all mistreatment of the mentally ill. There is no crowd-pleasing feel-good ending as his attempt to topple the establishment fails. Yet the lack of a happy ending makes his criticisms of the establishment all the more piercing.

    The movie was rated R for frequent profanity/blasphemy, crude sexual talk and one violent scene at the end (there are also scenes involving alcohol, suicide, an incident where sexual promiscuity is applauded, and an implied endorsement of mercy killing). The violence and language is deliberately distasteful and one can hardly feel sympathy for McMurphy as an immoral criminal (he is a convicted rapist, rebels against authority, sets up a gambling casino, and encourages Billy to lose his virginity). Yet one has to feel sympathy for him as he is abused by an inhumane establishment that is equally criminal in its own way by failing to show genuine compassion for those entrusted in its care. If McMurphy's character is distasteful and criminal, so is the character of care given to the mentally ill. Rather than become sidetracked by McMurphy's failings, we need to take a serious look at the failings of the establishment as embodied in Ratched. The tragic consequences (represented by Billy's death & McMurphy's lobotomy) of these failings are just as horrific as the consequences of an immoral life. Understood in this way, this movie is much more than a vindication of the free human spirit and an endorsement of rebellious anti-authoritarianism. More importantly it functions as a biting criticism against the abuse of authority to crush that spirit. This is not a pleasant movie to watch, but it packs a powerful philosophical punch and raises profound questions that are more enduring than mere entertainment.

    The conclusion does offer a note of hope, as the silent Indian escapes the cuckoo's nest (perhaps a metaphor of true freedom being found in escaping the establishment and modern institutionalized civilization?). But we are still left with disturbing questions about those who do not escape: Would we really want our family members in a place like this? This is a disturbing movie that raises disturbing questions about the treatment of the disturbed - but questions that need to be asked ... and answered.

    5-0 out of 5 stars a special edition for a very special movie...
    Before 1975 we had great violent epics like "The Godfather", "Mean Streets", and "Easy Rider". but later in 1975, director Milos Forman took a challenge on directing the famous novel "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest". hiring top-notch actors, including the up and rising star Jack Nicolsin. With his amazing debut in Easy Rider, Milos Forman thought he would be the perfect person for this role. this incredible movie shocked the world. even better than the novel, "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" is easily one of the greatest films of all-time.

    this movie has the stuff. memorable characters, amazing acting, hilarious jokes, shocking moments, and an ending to always be remembered till the day you die. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest easily has the most memorable ending to a film ever. enough talk of this incredible movie, as for the stuff on the special edition... its also great. with a whole extra disk of extras, deleted scenes, and a whole bunch more. I have tons of DVDs and this is easily one of the best purchases I've bought. No, not just because of the movie but the extra stuff on the DVD.

    the Two-disk special edition of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is a great update to a great movie. by all means, you must have this in your collection.

    4-0 out of 5 stars the best mental patient movie ever
    this book was written by ken kesey who used the money to gallavant around the country in the 60s in a school bus and do drugs with a bunch of dirty ol hippies.the story is about a guy who plays crazy to get out of a work farm and into a asylum.jack nicholson is that guy.also included are that crazy dr in back to the future,danny devito,a stuttereererer named billy bibbit,a huge indian whose mute and deaf,some smart ass home boys who help the nurse,a nurse with big boobs etc.children will not be amused by this.it is a tragic story.this movie has adventure,romance,comedy,drama,tragedy and above all is well written.it is very emotional.the nurse is over the top obnoxious and people like her should be put to sleep.amazingly,it is alkmost identical to the book.people say its a classic and well,they are right for once.really its almost entirely funny until the end parts.jack nicholson did his finest work ever in this story.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Jack Nicholson's Crowning Achievement!
    What a brilliant actor Jack is. He played four of the most memorable screen characters of all time. Randall McMurphy (this film), Melvin Udall (As Good As It Gets), Jack Torrence (The Shining), and The Joker (Batman). Just saw this film last night for the first time and was blown away. I will be buying this Special Edition real soon. The evil head nurse wasn't as mean as I thought she would be, but man is she well-acted. Everyone should see this film, it's that good! ... Read more


    12. The Muppet Movie
    Director: James Frawley
    list price: $9.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000IQBO
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 2031
    Average Customer Review: 4.68 out of 5 stars
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    This simply irresistible first feature from the Muppets has Kermit thefrog going from the swamps to Hollywood to be a star. As he travels and picks up his usual friends (Miss Piggy, Fozzie the Bear), Doc Hopper (Charles Durning) is in pursuit, looking for Kermit to be the spokesman for his frog-leg cuisine. A loose rendition of The Wizard of Oz, the film incorporates the same cagey humor as their breakout syndicated TV series The Muppet Show. This is one of the few times that a human cast (notably Steve Martin, Orson Welles, and Carol Kane) are integrated seamlessly with nonhumans. Worth noting is Paul Williams's score, which includes the Oscar-nominated "The Rainbow Connection." Williams's music, much like Howard Ashman's work on The Little Mermaid and other Disney films, provides more than atmosphere; there's a degree of magic here. Williams did not work on the future Muppet films until A Muppet Christmas Carol. His contributions made these films the best of the Muppet series. --Doug Thomas ... Read more

    Reviews (92)

    5-0 out of 5 stars "A bear in his natural habitat....a Studebaker!"
    This is one of the first films that I ever remember seeing, and it is still one of my favorites today. This story about the Muppets' cross-country excursion to Hollywood is beautifully told through the wonderful vision of Jim Henson. It answers the question about how the Muppets first came together, and offers the audience a glimpse into the lives of the various eccentrics that made up 'The Muppet Show' before they became famous. My favorite is, of course, The Great Gonzo, the "prince of plungers." His out-of-this-world weirdness always adds more fun to the chaos of the situation, as Kermit and Co. try to outrun the evil Doc Hopper and make it to Hollywood on time to audition. I also love the big Studebaker that Kermit and Fozzie drive around in as they sing "Moving Right Along." All of the songs are memorable, from "Rainbow Connection" to Gonzo's "I'm Going to Go Back There Someday." I have seen this movie a million times and I will watch it a million more. It's just one of those films that you can never get tired of viewing.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A classic for kids and adults
    The Muppet Movie is a classic movie that shows how Jim Henson's Muppets made it big. The story begins with Kermit the Frog sitting on a log in a swamp when a Hollywood agent finds him and tells him to go to Hollywood for a casting call for frogs. Kermit hits the road and along the way picks up plenty of new friends while also running into some trouble. The evil Doc Hopper wants Kermit to be his spokesperson for his new frog legs restaurant, but Kermit refuses. Along the way to Hollywood, Kermit meets Fozzie the Bear, Miss Piggie, Gonzo the Great and many others. This is a great movie that has humor for both kids and adults. There are very funny parts that intermingle the talents of many real movie stars in small cameos.

    All the Muppets are here from Kermit to Miss Piggie, Fozzie, Gonzo, Rolf the dog, Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem, Dr. Munson Honeydew and Beaker, and many others. There are plenty of cameos including Edgar Bergen, Milton Berle, Mel Brooks, James Coburn, Dom Deluise, Elliot Gould, Bob Hope, Madeline Kahn, Carol Kane, Cloris Leachman, Steve Martin, Richard Pryor, Telly Savalas, Orson Welles, and Paul Williams. Steve Martin and Mel Brooks are the funniest as a sarcastic waiter and a mad scientist. Charles Durning is also very good as Doc Hopper with his bumbling assistant, Max played by Austin Pendleton. Fans of the Muppets of all ages with love this classic about how the Muppets came to be!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Never give up your dreams.
    A simple story with simple themes: Don't give up on your dreams; sharing your dreams brings you more friends to help you find your dreams. As early as 5th grade I would rewatch this movie, and each time reminds me to keep going an not give up. Yes, its got great songs, great lines, great cameos; but to me its message to not give up is what makes it such a great movie.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Creme de la Kermie.
    Mini review of one of my alltime 10 favorite films.

    Many people question why this is on my top 10. I think the question is why is it not on theirs? This is pure entertainment for the whole family. It is a movie that works on all levels. The story is enchanting. The music is charming and whimsical. The muppetry is fantastic. It is hard to imagine a better opening to a movie than the rainbow connection sequence.

    The movie is a cornucopia of awesome quotes. I think my favorite still remains: If frog's couldn't hop, I'd be gone with the Schwinn.

    The cameo roles are excellent as well. Steve Martin excels as a put upon waiter. Dom Delouise is impressive as a hollywood agent adrift in a swamp and Mel Brooks steals the show as a german mad scientist.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Better than a Bucket of Doc Hooper Frog Legs!
    I had the pleasure of introducing my two and half year old son to the magic of the muppets through DVDs of the original "The Muppet Show", the syndicated TV program, that I had watched and enjoyed, while growing up in the 1970s. He loved Kermit & company's surealistic, yet hilarious comedy and music, so the next logical step was to move on to the Muppet's various adventures on film. Luckily, the first DVD I bought was the original 1979 film, "The Muppet Movie". The plot is quite simple.In his hometown swamp, Kermit meets up with a lost and nervous agent (played by the ever hammy, Dom DeLuise) who informs him that a major Hollywood studio is looking for frogs with talent.Armed with a dream of making people happy through his dancing and singing, Kermit goes on a road trip to the West Coast to break into the movie biz. Along the way he picks up new found friends Fozzie Bear, Gonzo the Great, Miss Piggy (starting their long running, tumultuous romance), and the rock group, Dr.Teeth & the Electric Mayhem, who all share in dreams of Hollywood fame .Unfortunately, Kermit also gets the attention and ire of Doc Hopper (Charles Durning), a Col. Sanders knock-off, who wants to force our hero to be the spokesfrog for his fast food, frog legs chain, "alive or stuffed". What an adventure! This is a wonderfully entertaining film, which will appeal to both kids and adults alike. Its obvious, that Muppet creator, Jim Henson and his fellow performer, Frank Oz were at their creative peaks.The writing is sharp and never 'dumbed down' ("I think I've lost my way"..."Have you ever tried Hare Krishna?") and the musical numbers are well staged (including Kermit's now classic, "Rainbow Connection"). What's more the film is filled with entertaining cameos from 1970's Hollywood including Madeline Kahn, Richard Pryor, James Coburn, Mel Brooks, Elliot Gould, Steve Matin ETC. My son and I have now collected all the DVDs in the Muppet's cannon of films and we pretty much agree, that this movie is by far, the best of the lot! For great family entertainment get "The Muppet Movie"! ... Read more


    13. The Quiet Man
    Director: John Ford
    list price: $14.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6302320496
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 203
    Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com essential video

    Blarney and bliss, mixed in equal proportions. John Wayne plays an American boxer who returns to the Emerald Isle, his native land. What he finds there is a fiery prospective spouse (Maureen O'Hara) and a country greener than any Ireland seen before or since--it's no surprise The Quiet Man won an Oscar for cinematography. It also won an Oscar for John Ford's direction, his fourth such award. The film was a deeply personal project for Ford (whose birth name was Sean Aloysius O'Fearna), and he lavished all of his affection for the Irish landscape and Irish people on this film. He also stages perhaps the greatest donnybrook in the history of movies, an epic fistfight between Wayne and the truculent Victor McLaglen--that's Ford's brother, Francis, as the elderly man on his deathbed who miraculously revives when he hears word of the dustup. Barry Fitzgerald, the original Irish elf, gets the movie's biggest laugh when he walks into the newlyweds' bedroom the morning after their wedding, and spots a broken bed. The look on his face says everything. The Quiet Man isn't the real Ireland, but as a delicious never-never land of Ford's imagination, it will do very nicely. --Robert Horton ... Read more

    Reviews (136)

    5-0 out of 5 stars John Ford's gentle and loving salute to Ireland.......
    From all reports "The Quiet Man" was a very personal and passionate undertaking from director John Ford, and his company of players (most of Irish ancestry)....and what sweet fruit their passion bore...

    This is a film of such warmth, tenderness, humour and beauty that it just sparkles from beginning to end.

    Irish-born, American boxer Sean Thornton (John Wayne) returns to his place of birth after accidently killing another man in the ring. Seeking to find peace and happiness in the lush green country side, Sean is enraptured with the fiery Mary Kate Danaher (Maureen O'Hara in a wonderful performance) but incurs the wrath of her bully of a brother Red Will Danaher (Victor McLaglen) because of Thornton's purchase of local land. Failing to abide by the customs of Irish courtship as advised by resident matchmaker Michaleen Flynn (Barry Fitzgerald) and Father Peter Lonergan (Ward Bond)...it's not long before the whole county is in a spin about this big Yank in their midst !!

    Amidst the lopsided courtship and Red Will's refusal to pay the dowry, Thornton & Danaher square off in what must be the most entertaining and longest on screen fights in cinema history...much to the amusement of the entire town that turned out to watch !!

    "The Quiet Man" is such a wonderfully enchanting film, that it is as enjoyable for all ages today, as it was nearly 50 years ago. Truly, a film for those young at heart and those who can appreciate such a warm hearted and lovingly prepared ode to the magic of Ireland.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Movie You'll Watch Over And Over
    A true masterpiece, this movie captures the heart and soul of Ireland. That said, not only the Irish will love it. It tells the story of an American, coming home to his mother's beloved Irland. There he meets and falls in love with a beautiful colleen, only to find that her brother is against the affair and basically, out to get him. Shot on location in Ireland, the view is gorgeous, and the plot has everything from exciting fights to tender love scenes. ( My favourite scene is their famous first kiss, when he kisses her in the storm and then she slaps him. Btw, Maureen O'Hara fractured her wrist doing that!)

    "The Quiet Man" was John Ford's favourite film, and also his most personal one. He cast his favourite actors in it, and it shows. John wayne is just great -whoever thinks he only played himself in every role should see his performance here. For his love interest we have Ford's kind of a woman, the breathtakingly beautiful Maureen O'Hara.She gives a magnificent performance as Mary Kate, and in my opinion should have won the Oscar for it. (She Wasn't even nominated!) Sparks flew when this couple met on screen, and the result is out there for you to witness.

    Don't wait till the next St. Patrick's Day -see this film now. I promise you won't regret it.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A romance almost out of time and place - wonderful cast
    Anyway, the story is an idyll that is really out of time and place. Apparently it takes place in the early 20th century in Ireland. It seems to be after the Irish Revolution, but before the First World War. I say before the war because the movie never references the awful loss of life that traumatized every European nation that experienced it. Any later than that and you would wonder where the planes and cars would be.

    It is a good love story, but the whole concept of dowry and the stubborn character shown by the whole Danaher clan would be mysterious to the younger American generation, as would the purpose of a matchmaker and the formal courting rituals that the movie sends up.

    John Wayne is quite fine in this role as is the whole cast. It is a very enjoyable film with a lot to recommend it for the family. It will certainly spark some discussion with the kids that might be helpful and broaden their cultural horizons.

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of the great classics of world cinema
    Everything about this film is first rate. The storyline, cast, the directing, the cinematography. You can't go wrong with this one.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Restored ? Huh !
    I'm going to keep this short. The Quiet Man is a classic, so why treat it like crap. I have VHS copies of old Disney Afternoon cartoons that are a million times better than this. The transfer is so bad I finally just messed with the color on my set and decided it would be better in black and white.
    Theatrical Trailers? That's what the box says, but there are only three "trailers" on the disc, and none are theatrical. they are all commercials for other Artisan discs, which makes no sense as anyone who sees what a terrible job they did to this classic will be very wary before they ever pick up another Artisan disc. Can you imagine the outcry if they did this to Wizard of Oz or any ohter film classics. ... Read more


    14. Mandingo
    Director: Richard Fleischer
    list price: $14.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6300216632
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 6281
    Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (28)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Mandingo is an Eye Opener
    ROOTS was to make viewers sympathize for the plight of the African-American, and MANDINGO was to make viewers cringe and forget that the slavery south ever existed. The film had this viewer wanting to turn it off, but wanting to see what was going to happen next. Therefore, the film had done its job in its manipulation of the senses. The movie boasts an impressive and diverse cast with the respected James Mason, Perry King (Lords of Flatbush, Riptide), Susan George, Paul Benedict (tv's Jeffersons) and boxer Ken Norton. The story revolves around a southern plantation owner Warren Maxwell (James Mason) and his son Hammond (Perry King) and their dealings with the buying and selling of slaves. Hammond beds every young girl slave in the joint while marrying Blanche (Susan George), and at the same time, he wants to buy himself a prize black prospect for fighting purposes... a Mandingo(Ken Norton as Mede). Hammond seems to have some sympathy and care for the black women, and has little interest in his own white wife who takes on the mandingo as a lover to get back at her husband. Some of the goings on are outrageous (i.e. Mason's character trying to get rid of his rheumitsm by transferring it to the soul of a young black boy etc..) The film's portrayal of white southerners is as offensive as the portrayal of the black slaves. However, it is still the black characters that are exploited, especially the scenes of blacks vs. blacks and the name of the game is survival. A lot of kudos goes to the actors who took on roles in this film and a movie like this could not be made today. When this film was made it was a sleeper hit and caused some controversy, Saturday Night Live did a parody sketch called "Mandingo II" and O.J. Simpson, who was the guest host, played the title character. Garrett Morris, Bill Murray and Larraine Newman were also in the bit...it was one of the funniest sketches of the show.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Hollywood style stupidity
    Let's face it - Hollywood is a provincial little burg whose movers and shakers know little or nothing about anything outside of the city boundaries - from Hollywood we get amazing takes on, for example, Japanese culture: (Karate Kid part III) - the last scene of the movie looking very un-Japanese and more like a voodoo ceremony - German culture: all Germans are Jew chasing Nazis - and Italian culture: all speak Brooklynese and have Mafia relatives. So it doesn't surprise me that Hollywood would come up with a piece of dreck like Mandingo, produced by someone named Dino De Laurentis - an expert on the South if there ever was one.

    I have no doubt that some slave owners, who weren't exactly "gentlemen" slept with their slaves - however, this depiction of what might have happened on a southern plantation was made to appeal to a prurient taste and is imho far removed from reality. On the other hand, I'm in agreement with Gore Vidal on the Sally Hemmings case - a gentleman like Thomas Jefferson would have never slept with a slave due to what it would have done to his reputation. I will, however, give Ms. Hemmings the benefit of the doubt - we don't know for certain, and only DNA will tell the truth.

    This movie will appeal to people who don't know or don't want to know historical fact, and those looking for light interracial porn. Unfortunately, our dumb European and other foreign friends, as well as the uneducated and immature in our own country will consider it to be the gospel truth on the beginning of race relations in America.

    4-0 out of 5 stars hot Southern sleaze...but riveting
    Part Harold Robbins and part Euripedes, this film has brutal depictions of slavery, abhorrent language, and extraordinary cinematography by Richard Kline.
    The imagery of Falconhurst, the huge but decrepit plantation of a cruel and vicious man (James Mason in a strange and brilliant performance) is fantastic; with peeling paint and filthy mosquito nets, winding staircases of gleaming wood, dark steamy rooms, and lush exteriors with drooping wisteria.
    The score by Maurice Jarre also adds much to the atmosphere, with Muddy Waters singing "Born in This Time".

    Perry King is excellent as Mason's son, broken in body, weak in spirit, knowing what is right and often doing what is wrong; as his wife, Susan George is appropriately annoying and trashy, and as his "wench", Brenda Sykes is lovely. Heavyweight boxer Ken Norton, who won over Mohammed Ali (and broke his jaw) in 1973, made his impressive screen debut as Mede the Mandingo.
    This film is a mass of contradictions, which is probably what keeps one glued to the screen. It is manipulative yet unpredictable, gratuitous and raw but thought-provoking; some of it might be absurd, but many of the situations shown did happen.
    With all the brutality, nudity, incest, and most of all, the repellent language, this is not a film for the young, or anyone squeamish about violence.
    Total running time is 127 minutes.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Great Scenery, Trashy Story
    Mandingo depicts the cruelties of slavery in a much more graphic manner than made for tv movies like Roots and Queen ever could. Lots of nudity, sexual situations and sadism. While the movie is highly unsettling, I would recommend it to those who want an un-sentimental look into antebellum southern life. The scenery (Louisiana and Missisippi) is fantastic, and Susan George's hammy performance as the mistress is amusing.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Have we forgotten??? Or do we choose to forget???
    As I read these reviews, I have to wonder what is going in in this country today. Have we really been able to wipe out the cruelty of slavery from our history books. As offensive and unpleasant these scenes may be for us to bear, it is nothing compared to the slaves to which this was their day to day reality. It DID happen. To hear so many people state that the movie showed untrue scenes is very disturbing. You know the bible says that the biggest feat that the devil has achieved is to convince us that he doesn't exist! This is a good movie and it is a much watch to get a true depiction of just how cruel and insensitive slaveholders could be. The sexual aspect of slavery is often ignored in the history books - this movie does a great job bringing that part of history to light. ... Read more


    15. To Grandmother's House We Go
    Director: Jeff Franklin
    list price: $6.93
    our price: $6.93
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6303465870
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 1006
    Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (20)

    5-0 out of 5 stars JUST LIKE A FULL HOUSE MOVIE - WITH BOTH GIRLS!!
    I have loved watching these twins grow up on tv, and 'To Grandmother's House we go' captures them on home video. Mary-Kate and Ashley are super cute and adorable, which we should al expect. And, unlike so of their movies, there is a plot!!! (Or atleast one viewers pick up on!) This is really family friendly - we all loved it. If you looking for an olsen twins gift for a young child, I would highly recommend it! :)

    5-0 out of 5 stars totally cute
    to grandmothers house we go is the most adorable film ever. mary-kate (sarah) and ashley (julie) are always arguing and their mom is sick of it so she says that she wants christmas alone so they set off of a wild journey to their grandmothers.with the twins only 5 years old any olsen fan would be blown away by their cute-ness!

    5-0 out of 5 stars KIDS LOVE THIS MOVIE !!!
    This is a really cute movie. My 4 year old girl and my 7 year old boy both like it. It has just enough adventure and funny stuff that even he thinks its cool. Any MK and Ashley fan will love it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars movie review(Part 1 of 2)
    This movie is grand!The girls julie(Ashley Olsen)& Sarah(Mary-Kate Olsen) are so cute,once you see them your eyes will burn!THE MOVIE(if you never saw it).:julie and sarah are giving their mom the time of their life.First,they hear thier mom talking to the baby-sitter about them."their a handful" or"I wish that I could spend a christmas by myself,you know,without them."After the girls hear that,a few minutes after their mom left,they go inside their room and start packing.first,they get their bags down.They full it with clothes.Next,julie and sarah put chicken from the refrigerater inside their bags.Packing their stuffed animal was hard,so they kiss it bye-bye.Money?Julie and Sarah think kiddie.2 pans and hitting their piggy bank with it was golden.After all of that,they are ready to go.After finding out that they'll end up in the same spot when you take a bike,the girls catch a bus into the city.From there, they spot the truck of the man who is in love the girls' mom,Rhonda.They sneak in.By that,Sarah ends up having to use the bathroom.She screams out"hey mister!I have to use the bathroom!"Eddie turned as if a robber was in his car.At a bar, Sarah finally uses it.They are taken to a ice-cream shop.Julie and Sarah going home?No way.Eddie is clonked in the head by Shirly and Harvey,two F.P.D. bandits.The girls are kidnapped by them.So sad.But luckly their not hurt.After the bandits discover the girls...(find out what happens next tomarrow tues.december16,2003)!

    5-0 out of 5 stars 2 cuties in 1!
    This movie has 2 michelles in 1.I say that because they look the same, so their in one body.This movie is so cool.The thing is that almost the whole gang of "full house" is in it.first,we have mary-kate and ashley,Bob Saget,Lori loughlin,Candance Cameron Bure,and And Andrea Barber.Any mk&a fan will enjoy this movie.I've heard some kids even Act out the movie.JUST FOR KIDS:you can ACT out this movie, but you must NOT really do this.WHY:
    1.kidnappers won't take you to chuck e.cheese or the carnivile.
    2.never go into other people's car.
    Thats all for now!(check out every week for new rules)! ... Read more


    16. Nate and Hayes
    Director: Ferdinand Fairfax
    list price: $14.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000I682
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 6678
    Average Customer Review: 4.62 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (8)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fun Popcorn Pirates Flick
    There are some movies that are meant only to be both hightly enjoyable escapist watching and great to eat popcorn while watching it. Nate and Hayes is one of those movies.

    Nate and Hayes is about pirates in the South Pacific. Tommy Lee Jones plays Captain Nate "Bully" Hayes while Michael O'Keefe plays the starchy minister, Jenny Seagrove plays O'Keefe's wife and Australian actor Max Phipps is the evil Captain Ben Pease.

    The action starts when Captain Pease raids the island right after the marriage ceremony for the minister and his wife. The minister is struck unconscious and his wife is taken prisoner by the evil Pease. The minister then joins forces with Captain Hayes who has his own score to settle with Pease and that's when the fun begins!

    Nate and Hayes is a much underappreciated family film classic. Thrills and chills abound in this wild and wacky fun fest. This is a great film for all ages and for families in general.

    Heartily recommended.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Pirates Pilfer Plenty
    I had this on Beta years and years ago. Why this isn't out on DVD by now is beyond me. Any fan of Tommy Lee Jones should love it. Fans of adventure and pirate movies will enjoy it as well. Jones and Michael O'Keefe are a good team in this lighthearted action movie. The story, acting, music, and directing are borderline great. Unfortunatly it didn't catch on at the time of it's release and most of the following is people that lucked upon it on TV or at a rental store.

    Any fan of movies like "The Three Musketeers" or "The Mask of Zorro" will probably enjoy it. A great adventure movie with a mix of Indiana Jones and Pirates. We can only hope with the release of movies like "Cutthroat Island" on DVD this won't be overlooked since it is a notch above several all ready available.It may not measure up to "Pirates of the Caribbean" but it still has a good deal of fun and action. There are no great special effects, just a good story and some decent acting.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Absolutely GREAT Movie
    This is a fun, no-think movie. Campy action and style. When is it coming out on DVD?!?!

    5-0 out of 5 stars "It's hard to love a ship : they rot."
    This movie is a GOOD time waiting to happen. It's simply fun. Lots and lots of fun. More fun than a sack of badgers. Tons of action, great fight scenes, excellent humor, and fantastic cinematography. I'm surprised we don't get more movies set in the South Pacific (except, of course, for the deadly sharks, destructive typhoons, remoteness, lack of modern medicine, headhunters and posoinous everything; some people are just more easily deterred than I am, I suppose.)

    If you're looking for a good, entertaining romp with great catch phrases and plenty of action, this is it. The music's pretty good, too, by the way. WHEN IS THIS COMING OUT ON DVD!?!?!?!?!? I must have it! Oblige me, Ben!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Suprisingly Fun!!
    Fun! Is the word to describe this film. This film wasn't well known nor was it a big blockbuster, but it is fun to watch. Seeing Tommy Lee Jones younger and with a beard is different. This film was made in 1983 so don't expect big and flashy special effects. Even without big special effects this movie is still a fun adventure story.
    Tommy Lee Jones plays American Pirate "Bully" Hayes. Nate is played by Michael O'Keefe, and he is studying to become a missionary. The story starts out in the South Pacific where we see Captain Hayes running guns to the natives. He is captured when the deal goes bad and is set to be hung shortly thereafter. The rest of the story is of Hayes telling a writer how he came to be imprisoned, sort of a Quentin Tarantino style before it became popular. The main story revolves around Hayes' adventure with the missionary man Nate and his Fiancée Sophie. Hayes' Nemesis, another pirate and former business partner Ben Pease, captures Sophie. The adventure consist of the usual story of this type, Nate and Hayes teaming up to get her back. This film is a complete adventure story filled with pirates, South Pacific natives, shrunken heads, early modern war ships, stuffy German sailors, swashbuckling sword fights, and other off the wall elements. I recommend this film to you if you are looking for something fun and a little different than the usual big flashy movies of today. ... Read more


    17. Animorphs - The Invasion Series, Part 1: The Invasion Begins
    Director: William Fruet, Timothy Bond, Shawn Levy, Graeme Lynch, Robert K. Sprogis, Don McCutcheon, Ron Oliver, Stacey Stewart Curtis
    list price: $9.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000G3I3
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 1185
    Average Customer Review: 3.69 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    For those not familiar with the popular Nickelodeon TV series and the phenomenally successful Scholastic book series by K.A. Applegate, Animorphs centers on the adventures of five teens who can morph into animals and bugs. They battle the Yeerks, a frightful mercenary alien race (slimy, sluglike, gray-green, and the size of a rat) who want to control humans by entering their ears and taking over human minds. Don't dismiss Animorphs as a sci-fi Saved by the Bell. The acting is surprisingly topnotch and the stories are fun and thrilling.Animorphs: The Invasion Series, Part 1--The Invasion Begins introduces friends and morphers Jake (Shawn Ashmore), Rachel (Brooke Nevin), Marco (Boris Cabrera), Cassie (Nadia Nascimento), and Tobias (Christopher Ralph). Three episodes from the TV series, "My Name Is Jake," parts 1 and 2, and "The Underground," reveal how the Animorphs learn to use their gift and uncover the Yeerk plan. Part of the nasty alien plot is to acquire as many human controllers (those possessed by Yeerks) as possible. And despite the darkness of story, there's a sense of humor, too: one of the human controllers is the high school principal. For ages 6 and up. --N.F. Mendoza ... Read more

    Reviews (70)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Paper into Film
    K.A. Applegate's world famous book series ANIMORPHS has finally hit the TVs of kids who tune into Nickeldoen. Shawn Ashmore plays the Animorphs' leader, Jake. The brave and lion-hearted Rachel is Brooke Nevin. Boris Cabrera plays Marco's part well with his jokes and, may I add, he's really cute. Nadia Nascimento (maybe I spelled that wrong) plays the nature wise Cassie. And last of the "human" actors is Tobias played by Christopher Ralph. And Homer is played by Jesse. These actors play their parts well and the special effects are great for the low sum they had to use. If you liked the books, you'll love the shows. But, and a big BUT, the books are always better. So, don't forget to open the newest ANIMORPHS soon!!!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Im sorry, but I...LUV IT!!!!!
    Okay, let me show you what I liked about it. The exellent visser three portrayal was definitely a good start, and the morphing was nicely done. The music fit well with it (though I'm darn dissapointed with the theme) and Boris Cabera and Christopher....what's his name... were good actors and the yeerk pools had a nice spooky touch. It did well copying the pulse pounding excitement of the books and... though it didn't really have that Animorphs FEEL sometimes, it had a unique feel that I really liked. The starship was... dissapointingly low resolution, but it was satisfactory and the Hork Bajir...well...I just don't think they really should look like that. Overall, Animorphs is a fun series that appeals to many ages.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Review of Part 1
    I watched this video 2 days ago and it fascinated me and my 8-year old son...the acting is good and these kids are more or less similar to the characters in the book but totally different. With books turned into a TV series, you cannot really expect a "literal" copy of the book to be turned into a TV series but it's still entertaining to watch. I just wish they have this series in reruns or something....and continue to fascinate young generations like my son.

    1-0 out of 5 stars HONESTLY
    I don't mean to insult those who think the movie is okay--well that's your choice. Sure movies don't always NEED to fit the book exactly, but come on, at least they should still MAKE SENSE. In the part after the Animorphs have found Ax, as they run away from Visser Three and the controllers, they run into a room with an open ceiling and lock the door. Visser Three uses his tail blade to break the door open (and in the meantime, the Animorphs are aquiring butterflies, to get away) After Visser Three managed to get the door open all the way, he morphs to human before going in and saying "Nooo!" as he sees the butterflies fly away. Now WHY WHY WHY would Visser Three morph to human??? He only uses his human morph when he's among real humans, to hide his real form. There were no real humans here, only controllers. And after all, he thought that he was dealing with Andalite warriors here, right? SO why would he morph into a human that has no natural weapons at all???
    There's a lot more pointless stuff than that. Like when Rachel morphs to cat to go spying on Chapman's house. Why doesn't she stay in the dining room to spy on Melissa and Chapman??? Why does she go down into the basement? In the book, the reason why she went there was cause she was following Chapman there, but here it makes no sense at all. And then, get this, once she reaches the basement, she DEMORPHs, which is really dangerous. And then she starts searching through a desk that's there, muttering "come on, come on". ERM, what exactly is she looking for? In the movie she went into this house to check wether or not Melissa is a controller. So what exactly does she expect to find on a DESK? Maybe a document, some piece of paper, that says "Melissa Chapman is a controller" ?? It just seems really stupid, how she's hastily searching through this desk, muttering "Come on, come on.." when she's really searching for NOTHING if you think about it, lol. Like someone else said: If you wanna save money, don't buy this junk. On the other hand, I would also recomend you to buy it, if you feel like it :D , just so that you can laugh your butt off at all the cheapness. (Jake always grins so stupidly when he's supposed to be serious, the furr on Ax's head looks like a punk, and in the part where Elfangor tells the Animorphs to run away from the aproaching yeerks, he's like "Go! Goooo! Gooo!" ugh. He might as well say "Gooo, my little Animorphs, gooo! Mwhahahaha!" ;) )

    2-0 out of 5 stars Animorphs, The Invasion Series
    The movie (or small episodes on one video) was quite disappointing. I am a HUGE fan of the book series, Animorphs, by K.A. Applegate so I decided to check out the movie in the library. The movie was a horrible. The actors were much older than the characters in the book. The actors did not portray the characters they were playing very well. The Andalites were completely fake looking and the movie strayed more from the basic book plot than I would have liked. I thought maybe the people who made the movie might have put the episdes in order instead of skipping around. There were some switched roles and completely messed up personalities. All in all, I wouldn't recommend buying the movie if you want to save money. Try renting or borrowing it. ... Read more


    18. The Three Godfathers
    Director: John Ford
    list price: $14.95
    our price: $13.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005A1VE
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 422
    Average Customer Review: 4.58 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    It's hardly shameful that The Three Godfathers ranks as the slightest John Ford Western in a five-year arc that includes My DarlingClementine, Fort Apache, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, Wagon Master, and Rio Grande. The source, a Peter B. Kyne story both hard-bitten and sentimental, had already been filmed at least five times--once by Ford himself as Marked Men (1919). The star of that silent version, Harry Carey, had recently died. This remake is dedicated to him ("Bright Star of the early western sky") and proudly introduces his son, Harry Carey Jr. (who had already appeared in Howard Hawks's Red River--as did his father--but we won't quibble).

    Just before Christmas, three workaday outlaws (John Wayne, Pedro Armendáriz,Harry Carey Jr.) rob a bank in Welcome, Arizona, and flee into the desert.The canny town marshal (Ward Bond) moves swiftly to cut them off from the wells along their escape route, so they make for another, deep in the wasteland. There's no water waiting for them, but there is a woman (Mildred Natwick) on the verge of death--and also of giving birth. The three badmen accept her dying commission as godfathers to the newborn. Motley variants of the Three Wise Men, they strike out for the town of New Jerusalem with her Bible as roadmap. It becomes increasingly apparent that saving the child's life will cost them their own.

    Ford's is the softest retelling of the tale; in place of Kyne's bitter/triumphant final twist, he adds a very broad comic postlude. Elsewhere, the nearly sacramental treatment of the mother's death is followed by an extended gosh-almighty sequence of the banditos reading up on childcare. But it's all played with great gusto and tenderness--especially by Wayne, who's rarely been more appealing. Visually the film is one knockout shot after another. This was Ford's first Western in Technicolor, as well as his first collaboration with cinematographer Winton Hoch. What they do with sand ripples and shadows and long plumes of train smoke is rapturously beautiful. It's also often too arty by half, but who can blame them? --Richard T. Jameson ... Read more

    Reviews (12)

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite westerns!
    It's amazing how a simple idea can be so powerful if it's handled well. This film shows 3 men wanted by the law who promise a dying woman they will care for her baby. They are menaced by an unforgiving desert, indians, and a total ignorance of how to care for a baby. All of which provides fertile ground for some good humor and great character development. Wayne is tough as usual but shows loyalty, honor, and a tenderness with the baby that is truly touching. One of my favorite John Wayne films.

    5-0 out of 5 stars heroism, with sweet & tender sentiment
    There are many reasons not to miss this beautiful 1948 film: It's exquisitely directed by John Ford, The cinematography by Winton C. Hoch is remarkable, John Wayne is looking and performing at his absolute best, and my personal reason for owning this video, the wonderful Pedro Armendariz, who is magnificent in it.

    It's a sentimental tale of 3 bandidos with hearts of gold, completeing a promise they made to a dying woman to take care of her baby, and it's so well written and lovingly made that it never gets corny. This is good old fashioned entertainment, and entertaining it is, as these heroic good/bad men are chased by the sheriff and his posse across the desert, with a Bible as their map. John Ford made many inspirational films, and this is one of my favorites.

    4-0 out of 5 stars read and you will find out
    a good and a very good ending. some good acting by wayne. it is an underrated film.buy this one you will never forget it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Heartwarming John Wayne / John Ford Classic!
    All the positive comments you read here about this film are true. This is a sleeper film in the Warner Brothers' MGM catalog that is way, way overdue on DVD.

    This classic western stars John Wayne, Pedro Armendariz, Harry Carey Jr and Ward Bond -- the usual John Ford suspects. Ford strikes a balance between action and sentimentality, directing this simple story in a straightforward fashion with a great sense of pace. It's really good fun. This is Ford's first color film and cinematography by Winton Hoch looks really rich and with enough sand to make you wish you had some lemonade.

    Maybe Warner's busily restoring this film to its original pristine 35mm real 1948 Technicolor glory and researching the vaults for behind-the-scences extras? Maybe they'll even toss in a pdf of the original story by Peter B. Kyne and the film script? It would be great if they included the original 1916 silent film with Harry Carry Sr.

    "3 Godfathers" is a natural for the Christmas season as it's a film the whole family can watch. Did I say it's way overdue on DVD?

    4-0 out of 5 stars Love Duke, love this movie
    I'm giving this four stars instead of five simply because five stars is reserved for true masterpieces - for films virtually without flaw. This film is flawed, but oh so wonderfully lovable. I won't bother to retell the plot, as others have already done a better job than I can, but I will just say what I love about it.

    The performances: Pedro Armendariz & Harry Carey Jr. are wonderful. I think of the scene where Pedro steels his resolve and heads into the tattered covered wagon to help deliver Mildred Natwick's child; his face reveals a wonderful mixture of dread, awe, responsibility, resolve, strength, determination... And John Wayne is at his irascible, lovable best - at turns impatient and scolding, tender and understanding - truly avuncular. He is clearly the leader of the group, and being 6'4" of John Wayne, he commands (and gets!) most of our attention, but never in a way that diminishes the other two men or moves them too far into the background. The relationship between the three characters is wonderfully drawn and complementary; obviously they all had great chemistry together.

    The story: The desert is a harsh and unforgiving place, but this film shows that even in the desert you can find redemption. Robert Hightower's soul is in a spiritual desert and it is for this reason that he must be the one to bring the baby to New Jerusalem. He has to find his own redemption and his own peace walking with God, which the other two men already seem to have. I know some may not share in the Christian faith that John Ford obviously had and thus may find the symbolism in this film heavy-handed, but I for one think it lent a great deal of emotional depth. Every soul is longing for something more, and for something greater than itself, and though I know little about Ford as a person, it seems to me that he knew this something more can only be found in Christ. There is so much more I could say about the symbolism in this film - the water, for example, that the men are constantly craving and aching for - think of the Samaritan woman at the well in the Bible and what Jesus tells her (John 4). This is a highly spiritual film!

    It is also at times highly comic. The funniest part, and one I could watch over and over again, is when the men are puzzling over what to do with their godson. Just the sight of John Wayne holding the tiny infant in his huge hands is downright sweet and endearing. Then the Kid pulls out Doc Meecham's book of baby advice, advice that prompts JW to say he wouldn't trust a "sick polecat" to the good doctor's care. One of the things the doctor suggests is rubbing the baby down with olive oil or clean lard. Pedro finds some axle grease, and the next thing we see is Wayne's huge hand dipping into the yellow grease and "greazing" the tiny baby's body, a sight that strikes the characters as funny as it strikes us. But it's much better seen than described so I will leave off. Suffice it to say that this is a highly enjoyable film that moves easily between sad & funny moments, and one I will be turning to often. ... Read more


    19. There's Something About Mary
    Director: Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly
    list price: $9.98
    our price: $9.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000063UUP
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 475
    Average Customer Review: 3.43 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (14)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Funny, cute, sweet and lightly witty
    I had heard and heard about what a great film Something About Mary is, but never saw it. It is now clear to my why all those who praised it never really explained why it was so good. This is a guilty pleasure movie. Cameron Diaz is beautiful and plays her sweet, innocent, charming character flawlessly. The humor is in-your-face funny. Within 10 minutes you will either eject the video or sit back for a fun ride. I especially liked the twist with the heavily accented architecture character.

    Bottom-line: This is a light-hearted, funny and fun film. It's not high art, strong social commentary, nor stirring dramatic fare. However, it is often witty, and always cute.

    P.S. I also thought the dog scenes were hilarious slap-stick comedy. Maybe he--rather than Cameron--should get Most Valuable Player Award?

    3-0 out of 5 stars OK
    The cameo appearance by Brett Farve is the best part of the film. The rest is so low brow...7th grade humor..that it is a bore. Young teens and gawkers will like this. Maybe a sports director I used to work with would like this too. HA.

    To adults this is mindless garbage.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Doesn't this airline supply paper bags on its flights?
    There should be stars with negative integers situated to the left of the y-axis intersection on the horizontal x-axis number line to rate this film. Watching this movie gave me the same physiological results as a good swig of ipecac. Everything from its lousy script and acting to its tasteless, sordid brand of humor (especially that "have you seen my baseball" ridicule of the mentally-challenged) made me regret even renting the video. To begin with, that offkey troubadour who must have been gonged by Jamie Farr, Jaye P. Morgan, and the Unknown Comic was painful to listen to. Cameron Diaz is currently a box office magnet with her charming looks; but she appears incongruous with her unsuitable role in this flick. Equally wasted is the appearance of Ben Stiller who is bound to find funnier and more suitable roles in his future films. Anyone who thinks any part of this film is funny has to have about enough intelligence to half-fill a shotglass. Now that the global Human Genome Project is completed, the gene responsible for bad taste can be theoretically altered and any future productions of films similar to this one can be obviated.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Looks good, not what i expected. 16th april 2004.
    I watched it and it was nothing like what i had got in mind. I never expected it to be like this, it is quite boring to watch. It may look good by the box, its watchable but not brilliant.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Extremely Hilarious!
    I saw There's Something About Mary when it first came out in the theaters and I even had the video but I gave the video away because when I get around to it I'm going to buy the widescreen DVD. I liked this movie and didn't have a problem with the low brow humor. Some people get offended by this type of humor but I didn't have a problem with it and I think this movie is hilarious and I think Cameron Diaz and Ben Stiller were both terrific and the supporting actors were pretty good too and I even enjoyed the cameo by Brett Farve from The Green Bay Packers and I highly recommend this movie but only to people who don't have a problem with crude humor. ... Read more


    20. Fantastic Voyage
    Director: Richard Fleischer
    list price: $9.98
    our price: $9.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6301744160
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 508
    Average Customer Review: 4.73 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    2001: A Space Odyssey took the world on a mind-bending trip toouter space, but Fantastic Voyage is the original psychedelic inner-spaceadventure. When a brilliant scientist falls into a coma with an inoperable bloodclot in the brain, a surgical team embarks on a top-secret journey to the centerof the mind in a high-tech military submarine shrunk to microbial dimensions.Stephen Boyd stars as a colorless commander sent to keep an eye on things(though his eyes stay mostly on shapely medical assistant Raquel Welch), whileDonald Pleasance is suitably twitchy as the claustrophobic medical consultant.The science is shaky at best, but the imaginative spectacle is marvelous:scuba-diving surgeons battle white blood cells, tap the lungs to replenish the oxygensupply, and shoot the aorta like daredevil surfers. The film took home awell-deserved Oscar for Best Visual Effects. Director Richard Fleischer, who turnedDisney's 1954 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea into one of the most rivetingsubmarine adventures of all time, creates a picture so taut with cold-wartensions and cloak-and-dagger secrecy that niggling scientific contradictions(such as, how do miniaturized humans breathe full-sized air molecules?) seemmoot. --Sean Axmaker ... Read more

    Reviews (11)

    4-0 out of 5 stars BLOODY GOOD TIME!
    When she takes her clothes off, it is apparent to all that Raquel Welch would become a star. The way she unzips is thrilling! I imitate it all the time. The story? Doctors get miniaturized and go into the body of a man to perform inside surgery. They must battle an uncommon array of enemies: leukocytes, T-cells, viruses, etc...all of which attack the submariners with undignified alacrity. Their egress is ingenious, and right in the nik of time. It is hard to believe this film was made in the mid 1960's. The special fx are surprisingly modern - even by ILM standards. The story is strong. And the "Cold War" motiff fits quite nicely. What I find most peculiar is the fact that this film is never shown on television. Not even on cable. I wonder what that's about. And don't forget about that body to die for. And those eyes. We don't have many old movies here, but it's one of our favorites.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great fun! What a way to escape...
    This is a great old flick that keeps you on the edge of your seat. Wonderfully detailed sequences add to the enjoyment of this great story. Although they didn't have the best special effects, they are great for the time period in which this film was made. Definitely worth watching for the Raquel Welch antibody scene!

    5-0 out of 5 stars AWESOME.
    Great special effects for his days and awesome captivating storyline.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great fun for the whole family
    "Fantastic Voyage" is certainly worthy of its name, with imaginativeness, creativity and beauty (From Raquel Welch in particular). It also has a rather simple plot, which I shall outline for you. An eastern bloc scientist, who holds the knowledge to perfecting miniaturization warfare, is defecting to the Americans. However, an attempted assignation leaves him with brain damage. The only way to save the scientist's life is to miniaturize a team of surgeons and send them into the body. But they have only one hour to complete the mission and have to face threats such as the body's natural defenses and sabotage from within.

    If there are complaints with "Fantastic Voyage", it is in some plot holes (Smart Alecs, in my opinion, should stay away and look elsewhere). Firstly, although it's extremely obvious who the saboteur is (He tries constantly to get the mission aborted and is always frantic), no one on board really seems to suspect him. The ending was also somewhat empty and unsatisfying (We never learn what happens to the scientist). Some will also love pointing out the plot clichés (The people in the control room always seem to know what the Proteus crew is thinking, even with no radio, and the sub crew always finds a way out of a problem). Many will also find scientific inaccuracies (My dad pointed out how well lit the human body was depicted) Then there is the impossibility of shrinking matter and placing it in other matter. Also, in terms of ideals, this film shows age. People in the 1960's believed that the future would be like it was in here and Kubrick's "2001". They thought one-day that humans would have established bases in space and would be able to miniaturize. How could they have known that computers and the World Wide Web would be the tools and thoughts of the future?

    Some reviewers have suggested that "Fantastic Voyage" should be remade. I think that is a lousy idea. Sure the special effects and set design would be better. But a new version would be colder, darker, more violent and full of foul language. The heart and joy of the original would be gone. Also, notice that despite being the only woman onboard, Raquel Welch never seems to have interest with anyone else on the sub (Most of them are past her age, anyway). While she may not give the best performance, at least she is professional and knows her priorities. Would that stay the same in a remake?

    So, while not without some problems, I wouldn't mind owning this movie. But I would especially love to see a widescreen edition (DVD preferably) released sometime soon.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Another Landmark Science Fiction Movie.
    Before 2001 and Star Wars, Director Richard Fleischer made a very well made science fiction movie with Fantastic Voyage. With a cast starring Stephen Boyd, Raquel Welch, Arthur Kennedy,and Edmond O'Brien, a team of scientists are reduced to sub-atomic size and placed aboard a small sub, then injected into a man's body to save his life before it's too late. Oscars were well won for best work in visual and artistic effects. A movie with substance and puts many of today's so called big effects pictures to shame. Also featuring a good musical score by Leonard Rosenman (who would go on to compose the music for the movie; STAR TREK IV; THE VOYAGE HOME). ... Read more


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