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  • Sabella, Paul
  • Sachs, William
  • Sagal, Boris
  • Saks, Gene
  • Salles, Walter
  • Salomon, Mikael
  • Salva, Victor
  • Salzman, Glen
  • Samples, Keith
  • Samson, Barry
  • Sanders, Denis
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  • Santostefano, Damon
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  • Sargenti, Marina
  • Sarin, Vic
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  • Satlof, Ron
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    $40.78 $37.29 list($50.97)
    1. The Phantom of the Opera
    $9.99 $6.45
    2. That Darn Cat!
    $9.95 $4.67
    3. Raiders of the Lost Ark
    $20.69 $11.85 list($22.99)
    4. Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate
    $9.95 $5.67
    5. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
    $33.97 list($9.99)
    6. Shall We Dance?
    $42.94 list($14.95)
    7. Crossing Delancey
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    8. Willy Wonka & The Chocolate
    $20.97 list($29.99)
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    $7.55 list($19.98)
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    11. Jane Eyre
    $19.99 $7.99 list($22.98)
    12. Van Helsing
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    13. Indiana Jones and the Temple of
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    1. The Phantom of the Opera
    Director: Joel Schumacher
    list price: $50.97
    our price: $40.78
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0007TKNI8
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 10
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com

    Although it's not as bold as Oscar darling Chicago, The Phantom of the Opera continues the resuscitation of the movie musical with a faithful adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber's blockbuster stage musical. Emmy Rossum glows in a breakout role as opera ingénue Christine Daae, and if phantom Gerard Butler isn't Rossum's match vocally, he does convey menace and sensuality in such numbers as "The Music of the Night." The most experienced musical theater veteran in the cast, romantic lead Patrick Wilson, sings sweetly but seems wooden. The biggest name in the cast, Minnie Driver, hams it up as diva Carlotta, and she's the only principal whose voice was dubbed (though she does sing the closing-credit number, "Learn to Be Lonely," which is also the only new song).

    Director Joel Schumacher, no stranger to visual spectacle, seems to have found a good match in Lloyd Webber's larger-than-life vision of Gaston LeRoux's Gothic horror-romance. His weakness is cuing too many audience-reaction shots and showing too much of the lurking Phantom, but when he calms down and lets Rossum sings "Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again" alone in a silent graveyard, it's exquisite.

    Read our CD buying guide
    Those who consider the stage musical shallow and overblown probably won't have their minds changed by the movie, and devotees will forever rue that the movie took the better part of two decades to develop, which prevented the casting of original principals Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman. Still, The Phantom of the Opera is a welcome exception to the long line of ill-conceived Broadway-to-movie travesties.

    DVD Features
    The two-disc edition of The Phantom of the Opera has two major extras. "Behind the Mask: The Story of The Phantom of the Opera" is an hourlong documentary tracing the genesis of the stage show, with interviews by composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, director Harold Prince, producer Cameron Macintosh, lyricists Richard Stilgoe and Charles Hart, choreographer Gillian Lynne, and others. Conspicuously absent are stars Sarah Brightman and Michael Crawford. Both do appear in video clips, including Brightman performing with Colm Wilkinson at an early workshop, and Crawford is the subject of a casting segment. Other brief scenes from the show are represented by a 2001 production. The other major feature is the 45-minute making-of focusing on the movie, including casting and the selection of director Joel Schumacher. Both are well-done productions by Lloyd Webber's Really Useful Group.

    The deleted scene is a new song written by Lloyd Webber and Charles Hart, "No One Would Listen," sung by the Phantom toward the end of the movie. It's a beautiful song that, along with Madame Giry's story, makes him a more sympathetic character. But because that bit of backstory already slowed down the ending, it was probably a good move to cut the song. --David Horiuchi

    More on The Phantom of the Opera


    The Phantom of the Opera (Special Extended Edition Soundtrack) (CD)

    The Phantom of the Opera (2004 Movie Soundtrack) (CD)

    The Phantom of the Opera (Original 1986 London Cast) (CD)

    Evita (DVD)

    Andrew Lloyd Weber: The Royal Albert Hall Celebration (DVD)

    Visit the Andrew Lloyd Webber Store
    ... Read more

    Reviews (665)

    2-0 out of 5 stars ...I don't get it
    Seriously...what's the big deal?
    I've never seen the stage show, but I bet it was a whole lot better than the film. I expected to be treated to a fabulous musical, much on the scale of 'Chicago' and 'Moulin Rouge.' Instead, I was treated to an ameatur technical filming of a fabulous set.
    There are plenty of shots where you can actually see the shadow of the camera, and the editing and photography of certain shots left me confused and dissapointed.
    The actors are too young, too bland for their roles. The music was overbearing and somewhat annoying. The plot seemed to draw out endlessly, the corpses of the actors didn't help. All of these actors are EXCELLENT actors, but their talent has been wasted on this film.
    Joel Schumacher too is an excellent director, he just seemed to get lost on this one.
    The sets and costumes are brilliant, I will say that. They're the only aspect that saved the production.
    Meanwhile, I respect those that enjoy it so wonderfully, I just don't understand why.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Phantastic!!!
    I did not get the chance to see the Sarah Brightman and Michael Crawford version, so I can not comment on which one was better. I loved this version though, the music, the plot, the acting, everything was "phantastic". Although if you don't like musicals don't even try watching this film most of it is sung. I loved the entire movie and I don't think one part of it was out-of-step or wrong. Although I have never been a big fan of Andrew Lloyd Webber I was surprisingly pleased with this movie.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Horrendous
    I was appalled by the general quality of the film. However, I was more flabbergasted by the ratings given. The jumping scenes are awkward, the acting (especially that of Emmy) is horrendous, and man, the singing, is even worse than being amateurish. Any member from my choir could out-sing Butler or Emmy. I stopped watching after 30 minutes through the film. Honestly, I RARELY give up on a film.

    5-0 out of 5 stars THE OPREA GHOST
    THIS IS A GREAT FILM I THOUGHT THE SINGING WAS GOOD AND GERARD BULTLER WAS GOOD AS PLAYING THE PHANTOM WATCH THE MOVIE IT IS Maganificent.

    5-0 out of 5 stars If you love musical's you will love this movie.
    I will not include what the movie is about but I will include my opinion of the movie. I'm 33 and my tastes in movies may differ from the younger generation.

    Some people may say the play is better. But then you must realize the play is limited to singing and acting but lacks the magical aspect that is shown on the big screen. Modernized by the latest movie technology, this version is the best one yet. With stunning morphing scences at the beginning of the movie you will be hooked. In this movie the music is oprea style of course. But now it's mixed with rock witch gives it a new aspect. With both Joel Schumacher and Andrew Lloyd Webber helping with the movie. I don't think anyone else could do a better job.

    -Side note- Now I was totally surprised on learning that Gerald Butler played as the Phantom. (From Laura Croft Cradle of Life.) And had no idea that he was able to sing. But I felt he did well as the phantom.

    I watched the version from 1991 with Burt Lancaster as the father (of the phantom) and theater owner. What I didn't like was the Phantom being fatally wounded by police.

    If you trully have a taste for all kinds of music. I trully hope you will enjoy this movie like I did. To me I think this movie surpassed all the movies I have ever seen including my favorites. ... Read more


    2. That Darn Cat!
    Director: Robert Stevenson
    list price: $9.99
    our price: $9.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6304285388
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 115
    Average Customer Review: 4.81 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com

    When a slightly cross-eyed Siamese cat named D.C. (Darn Cat) turns upwith a wristwatch around hisneck instead of a collar, it could be just the clue the FBI needs tocrack a series of bank robberies in this lightweight comedy fromDisney.The watch belongs to a bank teller whohas been taken hostage.Dean Jones stars as the good-hearted FBI agentassigned to the case.Unfortunately, he is highly allergic to, you guessedit, cats.Hayley Mills is D.C.'s doting owner who hatches a hair-brainedscheme to follow D.C.'s every move until he returns to the crooks' hideoutwhere he got the wristwatch.After a lot of sneezing, slapstick, and comedic intrigue, the bank robbers are foiled, the hostage is safe, and everyone ishappy. An impressive supporting cast of Frank Gorshin, Elsa Lanchester,Roddy McDowall, and Ed Wynn add to the zaniness. Released in 1965 (and remade in 1997), it is understandably dated, but the performances are funnonetheless.Hayley Mills is delightful as the determined and unflappablewannabe sleuth, and Dean Jones proves he is adept at physical comedy. This is a movie of little consequence, just a clean, fun diversion that thewhole family can watch. The theme song is sung by Bobby Darin. --Peggy Maltby-Etra ... Read more

    Reviews (21)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Mill's Best Film Ever!
    While out prowling one night DC,a siamese cat whose name stands for 'darn cat,' happens upon two kidnappers & their hostage, a bank teller by the name of Maragret Miller. While the hostage is up cooking for the two DC comes in, taking off her wrist watch & scratching the 'help' on the back, slips it on the back, & puts the cat out, hoping that somebody will find it.

    When DC returns home, his owner Patti (Hayley Mills) finds the watch on DC's neck & with her wild imagination comes up with a near correct theory. Her sister Ingrid (Dorthey Provine) disaproves with the whole thing & leaves for work the next morning with one note of instruction, Patti is not to notify the police about the watch.

    Instead of telling the police Patti notifies the FBI, & agent Kelso (Dean Joanes) is assigned to the job of following the cat. The movie was followed 32 years later with a fairly good remake starring Christina Ricci & Doug E Doug.

    5-0 out of 5 stars "That Darn Cat" is a Disney gem!
    Young teenager Patti Randall (Hayley Mills) discovers that the Randall cat, D.C. which stands for Darn Cat, comes home one night wearing a wrist-watch around his neck. Scratched behind the watch are the letters 'H', 'E', and part of an 'L'. Patti's imagination runs away with her and she figures out that the letters were supposed to spell out the word "HELP"! Patti thinks that the watch belongs to a kidnapped teller, Margaret Miller (Grayson Hall). And she is correct! Ms. Miller had been kidnapped by two bank robbers Dan (Neville Brand) and Sammy (Frank Gorshin) and fearing for her life, had put the wristwatch on D.C. Luckily, Patti, ignoring her sister Ingrid's (Dorothy Provine) commands on not to call the police, instead calls the FBI and gets help from Agent Zeke Kelso (Dean Jones). From there starts a zany adventure in which Zeke Kelso has to follow D.C. to the crooks while fighting off nosy neighbors, jealous boyfriends, and D.C.'s disappearing maneuvers.

    Based on the book "Undercover Cat" written by the Gordons, "That Darn Cat" is a Disney gem! For those who have read the book must be warned though that this movie is very different from the book, yet still hilarious and exciting! One of the best things about this movie though is that superb cast of stars! Everyone is perfect for their parts, from Hayley Mills the full-of-life Randall girl, Ingrid the serious sister, Dean Jones the allergic FBI agent, Roddy McDowall the short-tempered neighbor, Elsa Lanchester the nosy neighbor, her husband played by William Demarest, Tom Lowell as Canoe the jealous boyfriend, Ed Wynn the very nervous watch jeweler, and Richard Eastham as the FBI Supervisor. And of course we can't forget D.C. who is actually a very good actor! The title song is fun to listen to, very jazzy and sung by Bobby Darin.

    If you still haven't seen this movie, I really recommend that you do! For other great Disney Hayley Mill's movies, I suggest you watch "The Parent Trap", "Pollyana", "The Moon Spinners", and "Summer Magic".

    5-0 out of 5 stars Cats Rule & Dogs SUCK!
    The best movie of all time! My favorite part is when the cat tricks that bulldog ((...) that dog was so stupid!). So the cat climbs up the tree and knocks the hummingbird feeder off and it falls in the corner of the yard. The bulldog wakes up and runs over to the spot and starts jumping up and down barking. That (...) dog did not even notice the cat slinking up and start eating his food. Then he finally notices the cat and chases him. The cat jumps on top of a loose board, causing the other end to come up. Just as the dog gets there the board hits him HARD on the face. And he's all whimpering 'n' stuff and the cat runs away! Then the dog sticks his sorry face up and he says, "That Darn Cat!" I could not stop laughing through the whole movie! THIS IS DEFINATLY A MOVIE FOR CAT LOVERS (NOT DOG LOVERS!). HOPE YOU THINK SO TOO!*

    5-0 out of 5 stars Classic Cat!
    This movie is a crowd pleaser to this day! I show it as a special reward to my 2nd grade classes each year, and it is wonderful to see that a good, old-fashioned family film is enjoyable after 40+ years! They love the slapstick humor, and they like to complain about the nosy neighbor. Disney at its finest!

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Darn Good Movie
    Get this movie if you have kids. They'll love it. You'll love it. Only positive messages here. ... Read more


    3. Raiders of the Lost Ark
    Director: Steven Spielberg
    list price: $9.95
    our price: $9.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6300214060
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 212
    Average Customer Review: 4.87 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com essential video

    Steven Spielberg and George Lucas's 1981 resurrection of the Saturday-matinee adventure genre was deservedly popular, and kicked off a successful trilogy.Set in 1936, this first feature introduces Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones, an archaeologist and adventurer whose quests for rare antiquities frequently find him running from one menace or another. Raiders finds Dr. Jones in the middle of a Nazi plot to use the mysterious powers of the Ark of the Covenant to win the war. Karen Allen plays the love interest with an old-fashioned "man's woman" appeal (she can drink anybody under the table and is free with her fists). The constant, cliffhanger appeal of the movie is great fun--one is always wondering how Indy will get out of one scrape after another--and Ford's career got a big boost with his self-effacing but masculine portrayal of the hero. --Tom Keogh ... Read more

    Reviews (134)

    5-0 out of 5 stars One Of Those Movie Classics, "Raiders of the Lost Ark"!
    What can I say except that "Raiders of the Lost Ark" is a classic movie gem? With George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, and Harrison Ford contributing to this film, it's one of those movie greats which will always remain as one of my favorites to watch forever.

    Harrison Ford is Dr. Henry 'Indiana' Jones, Jr., a college professor but also a renowned archaeologist. The story is set in 1936, with WWII going on. After coming back from a 'trip', Indiana and his friend Dr. Marcus Brody (Denholm Elliott) are visited by some government people who have some very serious news. The Nazi are very close to finding the lost Ark of the Covenant, hoping to use its holy powers to win the war for them. Indiana certainly jumps for the chance of recovering the Ark and agrees to try to find it before the Nazi. But he knows to find out it's whereabouts, he must find the medallion crystal piece which can pinpoint the Ark's exact location. With this knowledge, Indiana travels to look for Marion Ravenwood (Karene Allen), whom he knows has what he is looking for. But the Nazi, along with their French archaeologist Rene Belloq (Paul Freeman), are hot on his trail. It's up to Indiana, Marion, and good friend Sallah (John Rhys-Davies), to recover the Ark of the Covenant.

    With plenty of action and adventure, this movie is sure to please anyone. It's a wonder how Indiana Jones can stumble on from one danger into another without getting killed! There's also plenty of wry and witty humor to keep you laughing and smiling. I must also mention the acting which is done superbly. There's Sallah who is faithful and trustworthy and Marion who's hardheaded, strong-willed, and ready to face anything. But the one who really carries the film is of course Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones. He is just PERFECT for the part and I can never, ever imagine anyone else playing the part. He's the perfect hero and adventurer (even if he hates snakes, hee hee!)

    A must-see, I can recommend this movie for anyone, though I must agree that it would be pretty scary for younger kids, especially the end. Two other Indiana Jones films are "The Temple of Doom" and "The Last Crusade". In my opinion "The Last Crusade" can measure up to "Raiders of the Lost Ark", with talented actor Sean Connery playing Indiana Jones father. "The Temple of Doom" was so-so. Now when are the DVD's coming out for these three films?

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Action/Adventure Genre At Its Best
    Harrison Ford plays Indiana Jones, an archaeologist who travels the world searching for antiquities for museums and universities. In 1936, he goes looking for the Ark of the Covenant, which the Nazis are also seeking, as they believe it has supernatural powers that will help them in their growing war movement. The Nazis have enlisted Indiana Jones' biggest rival, a mercenary antiquity thief who finds relics for money, not for knowledge and public access. Chases ensue as both parties close in on their sacred target.

    For Han Solo fans, Indiana Jones will look quite familiar. Harrison Ford is perfect as the lovable, adventurous, intelligent, basically moral, semi-scoundrel. The action is non-stop, as is the tension. There is an abundance of escape-from-imminent death scenes, along with plenty of humor and good scenery (watch for the scene when Indy is confronted, shoot-out style, in the streets of Egypt). The musical score fits the film perfectly as well. The special effects aren't quite up to today's standards, although they're still none too shabby.

    Overall, action-adventure movies don't get any better than this.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Instant Hollywood Legend
    This was the most popular film in the summer of 1981, and played to packed audiences. It must have resonated with people's emotions as an action film unlike many others. It starts with an adventure - an explorer travels to a savage society in order to steal their wealth (for scientific knowledge of course). He fails when another adventurer expropriates his winnings, but survives to return to his teaching job at a university. The film shows him traveling in a flying Clipper from the 1930s, but not on a railroad.

    It is a good action film, as long as you don't question some of the scenes. Could Nazi Germany have military forces in 1936 Egypt? Could German Schmeisser sub-machine guns be found in 1936 Nepal? I don't believe so. I suspect these scenes were copied from the 1940 serials that entertained moviegoers. "Indian Jones" will entertain you as an action adventure story with a multitude of cliches from long-forgotten films. Sliding under the truck recalls Yakima Canute's famous stunt. Some scenes seem far-fetched to me (when you think about it). Could Indiana Jones on a horse overtake a convoy of trucks? The theme music came from the 1948 film "Don Juan" starring Errol Flynn (rarely seen on TV). The chase through the maze of streets reminds me of 1940 cartoons. Other scenes may be derived from other old movies (the truck knocking down scaffolding from "Abbot & Costello Meet the Keystone Kops"). A few sequels were made, but it failed to be translated into a television series. Just like "Jaws".

    5-0 out of 5 stars A wonderful and action-packed film!!!!!!!
    If you're a fan of 30's and 40's serials,adventure films,Spielberg's work,or Harrison Ford, this is the movie for you!!!!!! This film has so many amazing scenes your jaw literally drops.the film also has some great acting,especially John-Rhys Davies(Gimli of The Lord of the Rings) as Sallah and Harrison Ford as our hero,Indiana Jones.Overall,you will love this film.It's worth checking out!!!!!!!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Return Of The Great Adventure...
    "Either of you guys ever go to Sunday School?" - Indiana Jones brings Eaton & Musgrove's church attendence records into question in "Raiders of the Lost Ark".

    From the director of "Jaws" and the creator of "Star Wars" comes the adventure film that all others in its genre are held up to, "Raiders of the Lost Ark". After twenty-three years and counting, I can honestly say that the film has yet to be outmatched (sure there have been good action/adventure films since "Raiders", including its own sequels, but I haven't seen a film that has had an indeliable, definitive impact that "Raiders" has left in a long time, possibly since the original "Star Wars")

    Hired by the U.S. Government, archeologist/adventurer, Indiana Jones is on a race against evil to retrieve the lost Ark of The Covenent, the chest that contains the original stone tablets of the Ten Commandments. The ones that Moses brought down from Mount Harab and smashed. When was the last time YOU went to Sunday School!? Along the way Indiana meets up with an ex-girlfriend of his, Marion Ravenwood, outraces and dukes it out with legions of Nazis, and has plenty of close calls including a truck chase, The Well of Souls and its snakes (& Indiana's deathly phobia of them), a slugfest with a mechanic and his flying wing, and the opening of the Ark itself (lets just say GOD isn't to happy when mortals decide to open the Ark & sift through its contents).

    An absolute modern-day classic. Why? "Raiders"' opening, from the Paramount logo to the natives chasing Dr. Jones, the bar fight, the basket chase, The Well of Souls, the truck chase (that alone gets 5 stars), the opening of The Ark in all its glory, John Williams' Oscar nominated score, I could go on all day long, but, you get the drift. What gives the film its drive (and where the sequels fail) is the urgency & danger of retrieving the Ark and the competitiveness between Indiana Jones and the Frenchman, Renee Belloq (the film imposes, early on, that these two have been competitors since there college days).

    I got this on cassette for Xmas 1984 and I burnt the tape out. Thank God for DVD.

    Nominated for 8 Oscars including Best Picture, Director (Steven Spielberg), Original Score and winning 4 of those awards including Best Sound & Visual Effects. The American Film Institute ranks "Raiders" as one of the top 100 films of all-time and Indiana Jones as one of the top cinematic heroes second only to Atticus Finch from "To Kill A Mockingbird".

    The truck chase wasn't directed by Spielberg (he did the close-ups afterwards), but was helned by second unit director, Norman Reynolds. Tom Selleck was originally cast to play Jones but had to back out due to contractual agreements with Universal and CBS for "Magnum P.I." (I think it would have been a different film. I saw a "Raiders" screen test with him and Sean Young and he came off very obnoxious). Danny DeVito was offered the role for Sallah but declined due to scheduling conflicts with "Taxi". The scene where the Nazi officer was supposed to shoot Sallah was filmed but couldn't be used, becuase of black smoke from burning tires in one take, and in another actor John-Rhyes Davies getting sick and filling his jallaba (and he didn't care one bit).

    "Raiders of the Lost Ark" is one truly great adventure worth taking over & over again. No matter what George Lucas calls it. ... Read more


    4. Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events
    Director: Brad Silberling
    list price: $22.99
    our price: $20.69
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0007TKOM8
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 624
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    If you spliced Charles Addams, Dr. Seuss, Charles Dickens, Edward Gorey, and Roald Dahl into a Tim Burtonesque landscape, you'd surely come up with something like Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events. Many critics (in mostly mixed reviews) wondered why Burton didn't direct this comically morbid adaptation of the first three books in the popular series by Daniel Handler (a.k.a. "Lemony Snicket," played here by Jude Law and seen only in silhouette) instead of TV and Casper veteran Brad Silberling, but there's still plenty to recommend the playfully bleak scenario, in which three resourceful orphans thwart their wicked, maliciously greedy relative Count Olaf (Jim Carrey), who subjects them to... well, a series of unfortunate events. Along the way they encounter a herpetologist uncle (Billy Connolly), an anxious aunt (Meryl Streep) who's afraid of everything, and a variety of fantastical hazards and mysterious clues, some of which remain unresolved. Given endless wonders of art direction, costume design, and cinematography, Silberling's direction is surprisingly uninspired (in other words, the books are better), but when you add a throwaway cameo by Dustin Hoffman, Law's amusing narration, and Carrey's over-the-top antics, the first Lemony movie suggests a promising franchise in the making. --Jeff Shannon

    DVD features
    Packed into the two-disc special edition of Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events is over two hours of serious behind-the-scenes features, deleted scenes, and interviews with the production staff. The most generous of these is A Woeful World, an in-depth overview of the production design with extensive commentary from Oscar-nominated production designer Rick Heinrichs. Kids who've read the books will enjoy seeing how creative minds transform the world of the books into a movie. "Costumes and Other Suspicious Disguises" is one of the most fun extras with footage of Jim Carrey comically ad-libbing as his different characters during the on-screen costume tests. The special features contained on the single-disc editions are also quite good, but most fans will find it worth it to pay the few extra dollars for this edition because of the insights it gives into the production. --Dan Vancini

    A Message from Count Olaf

    Dear Adoring Fan of Count Olaf,

    Perhaps once every thousand years, a talent emerges that completely changes the way movies are made, orphans are orphaned, and heartthrobs throb. Often this talent has only one eyebrow, as is the case with one of the most cherished and admired actors scheming today. Surely you can you guess of whom I think.

    No, you fool! I am referring to the One...the Only...the Unbelievably Handsome Count Olaf!

    Or, as I like to call him, Me.

    If you’ve already seen my performance in Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events, you must still be speechless. But if you haven’t, you are in serious danger. Just teasing. But you could be after I send one of my gifted henchpersons to your home!

    So why not get my movie on DVD? This major motion spectacle has everything. Me, acting! Leeches, attacking! Orphans, almost falling off a cliff! Of course, if you are familiar with books by Lemony Snicket, you know that they include all of these things too, but most of what he says is lies, and the rest is completely boring.

    There's never been a film that demands repeated viewing in quite the same way, with a diabolical genius writing you a letter that says, "I DEMAND REPEATED VIEWING!!!" Plus with DVD extras, you’ll get at least 20% more Olaf for your money. And... just for you, for an unlimited time only, I’ll throw in Aunt Josephine free with purchase.*

    So, noble Amazonians, put down your hunting spears and exotic headdresses, and prepare to bask in True Greatness. Or, as I like to call it, Me.

    Of course you may have my autograph!

    Count Olaf

    *Count Olaf will not be held liable or accept blame in any way for any and all liability, loss, damage, or personal injury (including death), without limit and without regard once Aunt Josephine is thrown in, due to the unpredictable behavior of hungry leeches.

    Stills from Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events (Click to Enlarge)


    Violet, Count Olaf, and Klaus

    Aunt Josephine

    Count Olaf and Aunt Josephine

    Directing Jim Carrey

    Klaus, Mr. Poe, Sunny, and Violet

    Count Olaf

    Olaf Ascending

    The Baudelaire Orphans

    All Things Snicket

    See a complete list of all Lemony Snicket's creations, including books from the Series of Unfortunate Events, calendars, and more.


    The Essential Lemony Snicket Books


    A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Ominous Omnibus, Books 1-3

    The Situation Worsens: A Box of Unfortunate Events, Books 4-6

    The Dilemma Deepens: A Box of Unfortunate Events, Books 7-9

    The Slippery Slope: A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 10

    The Grim Grotto: A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 11

    A Library of Unfortunate Events, Books 1-10

    Behind the Scenes with Count Olaf: A Series of Unfortunate Events Movie Book

    Lemony Snicket: The Unauthorized Autobiography

    The Puzzling Puzzles Activity Book

    More from the Movie


    Original Movie Poster

    Soundtrack

    Wall Poster

    Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events Computer & Video Games


    For PS2

    For PC

    For Xbox

    For GameCube

    ... Read more

    Reviews (254)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Well Done, Witty
    This is a VERY witty, whimsical, and surprisingly dark film. I don't see very many similarities between this and Harry Potter, like everyone says. The only Harry Potter that is remotely similar is Prisoner of Azkaban.
    I really enjoyed this movie, you will too.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Lemony Snicket
    I love his books!They are so facinating!Sometimes I just can't put them down! I first started reading them in 6th grade then I just couldn't stop.Then I decided to get my own copies of all of the books.I like Lemony's sense of humor, especially in Book 1, on page 94.Authough I wish he would continue with the series by writing books 12 and 13 because I would really like to find out if the Baudilares will really defeat Count Olaf an his troupe for good.One more thing:In the movie they pronounce Klaus as (Kl-aW-se) and Olaf as(O-lav).I prefer to pronouce the names (clause)for Klaus and (Ol-if)for Olaf. It is ok if you don't but my preferances would make more sense.
    Thanks
    P.S. My favorite is Violet, authough you may have a different favorite.You should read the books....I have a feeling you would love them.

    1-0 out of 5 stars .... GOOD ART direction doth naught a moving picture maketh
    'SOMEONE' should REALLY have a frank discussion with Mr. Carrey ~ [a super talent - really] about these artistic career choices that lead to cul-de-cat-in-the-sacks ?????

    REALLY a dreadfully, boring little feature, showing lots of $$$ on screen, but Oh My - the Horror! The Horror!

    Meryl Streep with a REALLY bad wig, check the hairline .... ditto Jim's eyebrows ...... and the Count Costume [Goodness is he ?? over? Andy Kaufman?] but do check 'Heartbeeps' the lost Kaufman movie with Bernadette Peters - and compare the costume[s].

    .....pity ....[and was that a tribute to Robin William's 'Popeye'?]

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good but the books are better!!
    When I got this I thought I would like the books better and well I was right. Don't get me wrong it was good but it was hard to follow if you didn't read the books. Defintely read the books before watching.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Why Lemony, why?
    How could Lemony Snicket allow Hollywood to do this to his great books? Lemony Snicket wrote 11 books of "A Series of Unfortunate Events.I have only the first 9 but that doesn't mean I can't bash this trash.
    Let's talk about the story: Three children who have this really big house with a library and everything lose the house and their parents in a fire.The children now become orphans and have to live with their third cousin four times removed (or was it fourth cousin three times removed?) named Count Olaf (Jim Carrey).Olaf is a mean greedy man who intends to have the three orphans killed in order to get a hold of their tremendous fortune their parents left behind before the fire.
    That's also the story of the first book.What the movie does is it tries to get cute and funny (far more than the books).The books were hardly ever cute and funny.They were serious and (as the title tells you) unfortunate.They were describing the pain and misery that the three children had to go through in their lives.The movie turns them into kids you couldn't give a crap about.
    Another thing I hate about this movie is that they started out with the first book and went to the second one without having the first one end the way it did in the book.Then they skipped a bunch of parts in the second and third book.Instead of going to the fourth book, the movie actually ends the same way the first book did (just thought that those of you who have read the books ought to know that before you witness this cheesy adaptation).
    Those of you who have not read the books nor seen the movie, OK, you could give this movie a try but you would probably find the books more interesting and more serious.
    Those of you who have not read the books but have seen the movie and you're viewing this review just so you can say, "Oh, what a jerk.This movie is excellent", well, read a book, wait for them to make movie out of it, and then you'll know how that "jerk" felt. ... Read more


    5. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
    Director: Steven Spielberg
    list price: $9.95
    our price: $9.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 630157401X
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 506
    Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com essential video

    The third episode in Steven Spielberg's rousing Indiana Jones saga, this film recaptures the best elements of Raiders of the Lost Ark while exploring new territory with wonderfully satisfying results. Indy is back battling the Nazis, who have launched an expedition to uncover the whereabouts of the Holy Grail. And it's not just Indy this time--his father (played with great acerbic wit by Sean Connery, the perfect choice) is also involved in the hunt. Spielberg excels at the kind of extended action sequences that top themselves with virtually every frame; the best one here involves Indy trying to stop a Nazi tank from the outside while his father is being held within. For good measure, Spielberg reveals (among other things) how Indy got his hat, the scar on his chin, and his nickname (in a prologue that features River Phoenix as the young Indiana). --Marshall Fine ... Read more

    Reviews (109)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Indiana is back, and this time he's brought his dad along!
    "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" is what I think the best of the three Indiana Jones movie. And one of the most important reasons for this conclusion is not just that it has Harrison Ford doing absolutely great, it has legendary actor Sean Connery as Indy's dad.

    Harrison Ford is Dr. Henry 'Indiana' Jones, Jr. When he is asked by Walter Donovan (Julian Glover) to help go in search of the mystical Holy Grail since one of his main archaeologist has disappeared, he refuses. But when Indy is told that the missing man is his father, Professor Henry Jones, Sr., (whom he has rarely spoken to in 20 years), Indy, along with the help of friend Marcus Brody (Denholm Elliott) and Dr. Elsa Schneider (Alison Doody), try to rescue his father from... who? Can it be the mysterious men who are trying to stop him from finding the Holy Grail? Or is there more to just finding his father and the Holy Grail than meets the eye? Indiana discovers that you can't trust anybody when dealing with power seeking men who want to use the cup of Jesus for evil.

    The best Indiana Jones movie AND action/adventure movie!! And the script and plot is just perfect, with plenty of lines which are just so funny! The first part where they have 'young Indiana Jones' played by River Phoenix was lots of fun, too. I like it where the explained some things like how Indy got his famous hat. "Everyone's lost but me..."

    My favorite parts are when Indy 'rescues' his dad but instead has to escape from the bad guys when he is caught himself and whenever Indy and Dr. Jones are arguing. One thing though is that I didn't think much of Alison Doody as Elsa. Yeah, she was real greedy and everything but I still like Karen Allen as Marion Ravenwood in the first Indiana Jones movie, "Raiders of the Lost Ark". And of course John Williams score is just terrific. I can probably hum the whole Indiana Jones theme song!

    For those of you who haven't seen this movie, well, I'm telling you to put it on you 'must see' list!

    4-0 out of 5 stars "We Named The Dog Indiana!...."
    Steven Spielberg and George Lucas were back along with Harrison Ford for this 3rd and final entry in this incredibly successful and beloved trilogy of films. The film was released in the summer of 1989, which was a tough summer. Batman, Ghostbusters 2, Lethal Weapon 2, Licence To Kill, etc. Indy held his own for the last time. The film is set in 1938, Indy is battling nazis who want to find the holy grail. This time around, we are joined by two characters who were seen in "Raiders", but not in "Temple Of Doom". Those characters being Marcus Brody(played by Denholm Elliot), and Sallah(played by John Rhys-Davies). But, the most interesting character is Indiana's dad, who is played by the perfect and hilarious Sean Connery. Who better?. The dialogue between Indy and his dad are comic gems. Allison Doody(nice name)is along for the ride as the token babe. This film definitley got back more to the adventure of "Raiders". "Temple" was a little dark and violent, and this film has steered away from that. The action is expertly filmed, and Spielberg, as always, has a keen eye of direction and scenery. Once you hear the opening notes of Indy's trademark song, you instantly get shivers up your spine. River Phoenix appears in the opener as Indy as a teen. As for the rumored Indy 4, I kinda hope it happens and I kinda don't. It would be great to see another Indy film, but will it be the same without thinking that Harrison will be in his 60's by then?. I guess we'll see. Anyways, this is a wonderful entry in the series. Check it out.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Tjhe third film is also the best!!!!!!!!
    A huge improvement over The Temple of Doom,The last Crusade is not only better(FAR BETTER)than the second,it is also in my opinion a even better film than Raiders of the Lost Ark!!!!!!! The story is the best of the three,the action scenes are terrific,and the acting,especially from Harrison ford and Sean Connery,who steals every scene he's in as Indy's Dad,is amazing.Overall,if you liked the first film and hated the second,The Last Crusade will please you more than the second and maybe more than the first! Note:Despite the PG-13 Rating of this film(the first two were both PG),this film is not nearly as graphic as the second.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Keeping Up With The Joneses
    "The quest for the grail is not Archeology. It's a race against evil. If it is captured by the Nazis, the armies of darkness will march all over the face of the Earth."
    - Henry Jones Sr. reminds his whip wielding son how important the last crusade for the Cup of Christ is in "Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade".

    The third entry in the adventures of Indiana Jones, aptly titled "Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade", is a lot light hearted than "The Temple of Doom" and its dark heart, and is more in the spirit of "Raiders of the Lost Ark" but can't outmatch it.

    Three years after the events in "Raiders", Indiana Jones is on a quest to find his missing father after finding out he's been abducted by sinister forces. For most of his life, Indiana's father, has been researching and trying to locate The Holy Grail. If Indiana finds his dad he also may have found The Holy Grail.

    After Seventeen summers, since its 5/24/89 release, the film is still fun to watch. The cast is great, especially Sean Connery as Henry Jones Sr. I can't imagine anyone else for the role. The chemistry between Connery and Harrison Ford is what makes the "Last Crusade" a stand-out crowd pleaser. Denholm Elliot expands on his role from "Raiders" as Marcus Brody, adding some goofy comic relief as the bookish curator out of his element. Of course it isn't an "Indiana Jones" film without Harrison Ford as the title role. This a classic example of a film character that is so legendary, that it would be fruitlessly idiotic to have the character be recast with another actor. In other words I really can't see Tom Selleck as Dr. Jones, and if there isn't a fourth adventure with Indiana Jones it would suck big time, but I could live with it.

    "Last Crusade" does have some really great action sequences. From Indy's first adventure, to the motorcycle and tank chases the film seems to try to outdo itself. Thats where the film hits a small speed bump. The action is so great that I couldn't help but be reminded of "Raiders" thru some of the action sequences in "Last Crusade" (especially the tank chase. It reminded me of the truck sequence in "Raiders"). But, its all good!

    As for a fourth film, who knows? As of this writing, story creator George Lucas wasn't to happy with the latest draft and the whole production almost went back to square one. The film won't get made unless Harrison Ford, Lucas, & director Steven Speilberg are happy with all aspects of the script.

    4-0 out of 5 stars The Moose Hole - Triumphant 'Crusade'
    Third time's a charm? Three's a crowd? These must have been the question plaguing the filmmakers and studio executives behind one of the greatest adventure series in movie history. But the lure of the charm, excitement, and most notably the rather large box office coin, of the previous two features could hold anybody down from this project. In the time since Indiana Jones & the Temple of Doom, the three main men of the series had had a mixed bag of results away from the adventurous archeologist. Steven Spielberg was coming into his own amongst the critical elite with highly acclaimed, and multi nominated, features The Color of Purple and Tears of the Sun. George Lucas, with his predominantly acclaimed Star Wars series behind him for the time being, spent his time executively producing such under-appreciated features as Labyrinth and Willow. And Indiana Jones himself, Harrison Ford, had success in Witness and Working Girl but nothing for his own work. So was there any doubt that a third was demanded amongst not only two out of the three main men but the studio executives at Paramount as well? Whether that was the case or not, Indiana Jones was on his way once again to the big screen, possibly for the last time.

    The story takes place nearly two years after the original feature film, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and three years after the Temple of Doom and places our hero, Indiana Jones, once again against the nefarious Nazi empire. Barely able to catch his breathe after another perilous mission for an ancient artifact; Indiana is whisked off, this time by multi-millionaire Walter Donovan to find an object not only important to the field of archeology but to the world itself. For over forty years, Indy's own father spent tireless hours researching and recording the many secrets that would lead to the discovery of the Holy Grail, the cup that Christians believed was used by Jesus Christ at the Last Supper and was also used to catch his blood at the time of his death. It is also believed that the Grail would bring immortal life to whoever drank from it, which has certainly gained the attention of Adolf Hitler, who dreams of a superior master race to rule the world, and he will do anything to achieve that dream. That is why it is important that Indiana get to the Grail first before the Nazis do but first he must find the man who was once in charge of the operation but has mysteriously disappeared, his own father. The story for Indiana Jones & the Last Crusade is probably one of the most noble adventure films in the genre and though this deals mainly with Christianity, Spielberg manages to keep the focus generally on universal beliefs and the concept of faith itself rather then the individual denominations. He guides the audience through several complex theories and beliefs but directs it out in such a way that even the most clueless of filmgoers will get a general idea of what is behind many of the main actions of the film.

    As was said about the Temple of Doom in that the Indiana Jones series isn't afraid to switch supporting characters up and that it usually works well depending on their interaction with Ford remains true for this film. Not all work though, but the mass majority pick up the slack of the less potent additions to the cast. Harrison Ford dons the famous hat and whip once again and gives possibly the best performance in the series, if not on par with Raiders of the Lost Ark. This is all thanks to his absolutely amazing chemistry with Sean Connery, who is best known for his role as James Bond. The two talented performers play off each other so well that you would believe they were actually related. Sean Connery still shows that he has what it takes to be a commanding actor despite his old age. Though the feature contains a decent amount of humor within the material itself, additional comic relief comes in the form of Denholm Elliott as Dr. Marcus Brody and John Rhys-Davies as Sallah, who reprise their fantastic roles from the original. The only cast member that just doesn't seem quite right for the series is Alison Doody as Dr. Elsa Schneider, whose lines seem so drulled out and the performance on the whole being quite tacky. Whether that was the intention of the filmmakers or not may not be known but in either case it felt over-the-top and not in the good way that it could have been. It could have been Doody's performance or the role itself but whatever it was it didn't work at all.

    Overall, if this is Indiana Jones' last go-around then it is marvelous one at that, mixing everything that made the series so enduring all into one consolidating effort. Historical background, religious content, and memorable characters all come together in a triumphant achievement from the brilliant duo of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. There is little to complain about with this film but if anything was out of place, beside Alison Doody's performance, it had to be focus taken too much away from the meaning behind the Grail itself. Granted, praise must be given to Spielberg for the film's intention on keeping the audience centered on universal beliefs, but considering you are dealing with serious Christian content, it would have been nice to keep the focus on that but no big foul called for not doing that. Outside of a small dispute, Indiana Jones & the Last Crusade is an absolute must see and the wonderful thing about it is that there is no need to watch the previous two features in order to appreciate the magnificence of Spielberg's vision. ... Read more


    6. Shall We Dance?
    Director: Masayuki Suo
    list price: $9.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6304798466
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 329
    Average Customer Review: 4.88 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    On his evening commute, bored accountant Sugiyama (Koji Yakusho) always looks for the beautiful woman who gazes wistfully out the window of the Kishikawa School of Dancing. One night he gets off the train, walks into the studio, and signs up for a class. Soon Sugiyama is so engrossed in his dancing he practices his steps on the train platform and under his desk, and becomes good enough for competition, compelling his wife to hire a private investigator to find out why he stays out late and returns home smelling of perfume. Among the colorful characters Sugiyama meets is his coworker Aoki (Naoto Takenaka), who transforms himself from geeky systems analyst to hilariously flamboyant (and bad-wigged) lounge lizard. Aoki explains to Sugiyama, "When I finish work, put on the clothes, the wig and become Donny Burns, Latin world champion, and I start to move to the rhythm, I'm so happy, so completely free." Here lies the chief charm of Shall We Dance, the contrast between the ultracompetitive women of the studio--including the one who caught Sugiyama's eye, Mai (Tamiyo Kusakari)--and the men who dance simply because they enjoy it. This 1996 film is somewhat comparable to the flamboyant Aussie favorite Strictly Ballroom, but Shall We Dance is especially noteworthy for contrasting the boldness of social dance with the buttoned-up societal mores of Japan, where people avoid public displays of emotion. Even in Japan, the joy of dance is irresistible. --David Horiuchi ... Read more

    Reviews (105)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Save the Last Dance For Me
    A clever late 90's Japanese film with English subtitles about ballroom dance lessons. No, this isn't your Arthur Murray dance studio. The cast is a memorable diverse, intriguing, group of characters taking dance lessons. Since the Japanese are reserved about public intimacy, dance lessons should be of a clandestine nature. The consensus in the movie is that men are considered losers if they take dance lessons or is it "just a reason to hold a woman in your arms."

    The story focuses on Mr. Shugyima, a workacholic who spots an attractive woman through a window. Burdened with a mortgage and life's pressures, he seeks dance lessons to get closer.

    Another character, a balding, quirky, looney Japanese/Latino, Mr. Aoki, has been dancing for five years, he wears a long frizzy wig piled loosely on his head because he believes the wig gives him inspiration to be like his idol, Donny Burns, a Latin dance king. The funny contortionist facial movements work equally with his suave, cool, bawdy dance numbers. He comes across like a combination Don Juan and Madonna striking a pose! A dance partner offends him when she refuses to dance with him as he dances "creepy."

    An unusual treat is the Drifter's song "Save the Last Dance For Me." It is the only English lyrical song, quite fitting for the occasion. This movie is a gem, full of humor and silliness. See it!......MzRizz.

    5-0 out of 5 stars "Shall We Dansu?"-great story and cast!
    This has to be the best Japanese movie I've ever seen and my all time favorite! It's the story of a 40 something year-old salaryman who, after seemingly attaining all his goals in life, a wife and child, a company position with a bright future and a new house, begins to ponder if there's more to life than just the "9 to 5" grind and mortgage payments. During his train rides home from work, he notices a beautiful young woman standing in front of the window of a dance school. What happens after that might seem obvious, but me believe it's not...Even if you don't understand one word of Japanese, the subtitled version, like the touching story are so well written, that you'll want to watch it over and over again. I hope the rumors of this movie coming out in U.S. theatres are true because it's sure to be a hit, until then i'll be waiting for this one on DVD! Aoki-san Gambatte!

    5-0 out of 5 stars to dance is to be free!!!!
    This is the tale of Sugiyama, a Japanese "salaryman" who, in the tradition of modern-day Japan, essentially lives to work depsite the boredom and neglect of his family. On his morning commute aboard the train, he sees a beautiful dance instructor in he classroom. He decides to sign up and finds a life outside the office and his family via dancing. His wife hires a detective to find out what he is doing and why he smells like perfume when he gets back.

    The great thing about this movie, and what I believe is true for everyone in every nation, is that everyone needs a passion that has absolutely nothing to do with their job or any of the skills required for it. Something to do just for the sake of enjoying yourself. As his coworker and fellow dance fanatic Aoki says, it makes him feel free.

    The fact that they have to hide their hobby at work is hilarious. Aoki says their improved posture is a dead giveaway. They are caught ballroom dancing in the men's room so Sugiyama pretends he has just fainted and Aoki happened to catch him.

    Humorous with a message, this is a great flick.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Gai-jin rates Shall We Dance as Ichi-ban (number one) Movie
    I first saw Shall We Dance? on the big screen and was captivated by its storyline and cast of characters. I felt then, as I do now, that this was a film out of the ordinary. Viewers can relate to the various personalities and their dreams or desires. Because I am an expatriate living in Japan, I enjoyed the glimpse into the daily lives of my neighbors. Ichi-ban movie...a heart-warming story that you won't get tired watching over and over again. It needs to come on DVD a.s.a.p.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Save the Last Dance for me!!
    This is a clever late 90's Japanese film with English subtitles about ballroom dance lessons. No, this isn't your Arthur Murray dance studio. The subtitles are very easy to read and clearly defined. The cast is a memorable diverse, intriguing, group of characters taking dance lessons.

    Since the Japanese are reserved about public intimacy, dance lessons are of a clandestine nature. The consensus here is that men are considered losers if they take dance lessons or lessons are just a reason to hold a woman in your arms.

    The story focus is on Mr. Shugiyama, an overworked middle-aged man with a wife, daughter at home. From his commute, he spots a beautiful woman in a window as she teaches her students dance steps.

    His intention is to meet the girl, but she blatantly tells him that she takes this serious and if he is there just to meet her, then he should not take lessons. She adamantly informs him that this is a classroom, not a disco. To "save face", he hangs in there and learns to dance rather than become a failure.

    The array of characters:
    A balding, quirky, Mr. Aoki, has been dancing for five years, he wears a long frizzy wig piled loosely on his head because he believes the wig gives him inspiration to be like his idol, Donny Burns, a Latin dance king. While he dances, he gives these funny facial movements that equate with his suave, cool, bawdy dance numbers. He comes across like a combination Don Juan and Madonna striking a pose! He is known to dance "creepy."

    An extremely shy and reserved heavy-set man with thick glasses gets his fulfillment learning to dance. He becomes alive once he learns the steps.

    Also, an abrasive dance instructor who isn't afraid to spew her insults when needed and she trades verbal jabs with the male customers.

    As the movie reaches the climax, a number of dance halls and amateur dance contests are held.

    An unusual treat is the Drifter's song "Save the Last Dance For Me." It is the only English lyrical song, quite fitting for the occasion. This movie is a gem, full of humor and silliness. See it!......MzRizz. ... Read more


    7. Crossing Delancey
    Director: Joan Micklin Silver
    list price: $14.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6301255011
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 1760
    Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com

    A sweet tempered urban love story, Crossing Delancey argues that true love may be in the first place you look. Amy Irving is a single Jewish woman working at an upscale bookstore on the Upper West Side of New York. As much as she longs to be a part of the intellectual literary scene, she is tethered to her roots on the Lower East Side, where her old-fashioned grandmother is forever trying to fix her up. Irving has her eye on a handsome brooding author, but her grandmother enlists the help of a local matchmaker to fix her up with Peter Riegert, a quiet Jewish man who runs a pickle stand in the neighborhood. Soon she must decide what it is she really wants out of life and what love really means to her. Though a very traditional love story, Crossing Delancey has its moments of soul searching drama and an unlikely romance. --Robert Lane ... Read more

    Reviews (20)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Literate, Charming Romance!
    This is the movie that "Moonstruck" WISHES it could have been! Amy Irving and Peter Reigert star in this literate, well written, wonderfully acted New York story in which Upper West Side sophistication meets Lower East Side tradition. Irving's "Izzy" lives in a world of books, editors, writers, and intellectuals, while Reigert's "Sam" owns a pickle stand in the heart of Lower Manhattans old world Jewish community, the East Side below Delancey Street. Sam and Izzy are brought together when Izzy's old fashioned Grandmother hires a matchmaker to find Izzy a suitable man to finally settle down with. Tradition clashes with modern life in New York when Sam enters Izzy's world and forces her to look at herself and those around her.

    5-0 out of 5 stars "A joke and a pickle...for only a nickle."
    I hate to use the word "adorable", but, I must. This film is just adorable. The story of Izzy, the sophisticated, independent, N.Y. City career girl (wonderfully played by Amy Irving), and "Sam , The Pickle Man", (also wonderfully played by Paul Riegert), is a heartwarming, funny, sweet love story. Izzys "Bubby" hires a marriage broker, hysterically played by Sylvia Miles, to "match-up" her granddaughter, "Miss Fancy", who she perceives as living a lonely life.."A dog should live alone !" Izzy is involved in the literary world, and aspires to an intellectual, sophisticated life, only miles away, but a million miles away from the old -world kosher existance of her beloved Bubby. Reizl Bezyk ,who was a popular star in Yiddish theater, plays Bubby, and she is really the outstanding character in this movie. Her practical, no-nonsense approach to life & love, with a kind of "you're born, you eat, you love, you die" mentality, is in direct opposition to granddaughter Isabelles (Izzy). She speaks in "Bubby-isms", and she is hysterical, implying the world in just a look. Izzy immediatley rejects the arranged match-up with Riegerts "Sam", the pickle man, simply because she can't get past the pickles. She sees the pretentious Russian author, to whom she is associated in her job at an old book store, as being more complementary to her. He is a cad who woos her with quotes from Confucious, and he can offer her the prestige and entree into the world of intelligensia that she aspires to be in. The ensuing conflict, between the world she hopes for, and the opportunity that's right in front of her... that she won't see, is very touching and funny. This is just a great little love story about sometimes finding what you're looking for in the most un-likely package, and not letting your pre-conceived expectations get in the way. It is beautifully filmed around wonderful Manhattan locations, and the soundtrack by "The Roches" perfectly complements the story as it happens. A terrific little "feel-good" movie... and you're gonna love that "Bubby."

    4-0 out of 5 stars Searching & Finding Meaning in the Middle of Romance
    "Crossing Delancey" is presumed at first a romance, and it is. Deeper than the romance is a search for meaning. This two-level movie is funny with an undercurrent of a genuine plot stronger than the usual romantic comedy.

    Part of the ego-driven, superficial but pretentious New York literary scene, Isabelle Grossman brings together writers and other literati for soirees feting the personalities behind the books.

    Isabelle, or Izzy, herself is not a writer, but feels she is important because of the names and numbers in her Rolodex. She works hard and late, only to go home to an empty apartment. Her only love is accommodating the occasional lonely nights of a friend who fights with his wife. She tolerates his affections in what amounts to be no more than a recurring one-night stand.

    Although Izzy's emptiness surrounds her, she never notices it, not even when her grandmother has a matchmaker attempt setting her up with Sam, a neighbor bachelor. Unfortunately for Sam, her intentions are set on Anton, a dashing, but caddish author whose books are bestsellers. He only wants her to appease his desires, and has no love for her, but she is blind to his true intentions. She curtly rejects another date with Sam.

    With a single romantic signal, Pickleman Sam, the man she pushed away in a matchmaking dinner now effectively woos her heart into confusion. He had noticed her years ago and now happily accepted the chance to be introduced by the matchmaker. When he tells her this, a spark is lit. He isn't the suave author she begs for, and his lifestyle is more simple than those whose books are reviewed in the New York Times. She fumbles opportunity after opportunity to connect with Sam, but he is patient.

    Anton makes advances that are alluring to Izzy as her heart tries to reconcile her fondness for Sam. This conflict causes Izzy to ask the important questions about integrity, meaning and happiness.

    With the light, but poignant backdrop of her Jewish family and friends, this romance makes statements both serious and comedic. Outside of the periodic stereotyping of Jewish grandmothers, it works.

    I fully recommend "Crossing Delancey."

    Anthony Trendl

    5-0 out of 5 stars This Movie Needs to be out in DVD!
    I saw Crossing Delancey when it first came out, 16 years ago. It is a wonderful story about New York, family, and learning that the person who, at first glance, doesn't fit into your world turns out to be perfect after all. I have recommended this movie over the years to everyone I know. The videotapes are getting scarce and I don't understand why it's never come out on DVD!

    5-0 out of 5 stars The charm of the pickle seller
    This urban love story stars Amy Irving as a single Jewish woman who is balanced between two worlds: the literary life of the Upper West Side in Manhattan where she works in an upscale bookstore and the ethnic hotbed of the Lower East Side where her yenta of a grandmother is forever trying to arrange a marriage "with a nice Jewish boy."
    Granny wants to fix her up with a quiet guy who runs a neighbornood pickle stand - and Amy's not having any of it. I mean, a PICKLE SELLER?? Come on, Granny!

    But watch what happens...
    A traditional romance, lovingly told. Enjoy it. ... Read more


    8. Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (30th Anniversary Edition)
    Director: Mel Stuart
    list price: $8.98
    our price: $8.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005LL26
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 64
    Average Customer Review: 4.55 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (224)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker. ;)
    1971's "Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory" is a colorful cult classic that includes both a witty score and a morality tale. Based on the children's novel by Roald Dahl, the story concerns Charlie Bucket (Peter Ostrum), a poor yet virtuous paperboy who dreams of a better life. With no father, no money, and four bedridden grandparents to support, Charlie's future seems bleak. However, that changes when a contest is started by the town's mysterious candymaker, Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder): 5 Golden Tickets are hidden among the billions of Wonka bars sold all over the world. The lucky buyers who find the tickets will get a lifetime supply of chocolate AND an exclusive tour through the factory. The first half of the movie shows the worldwide hysteria that results from the frantic search for the Tickets. Eventually, four winners are revealed one by one: Veruca Salt (Julie Dawn Cole) is Great Britain's ultimate spoiled brat. Augustus Gloop (Michael Bollner) is a chubby German who considers eating his most favorite hobby. Violet Beauregarde (Denise Nickerson) bears the rude, disgusting habit of constantly chewing gum. Mike Teevee (Paris Themmen) is a cowboy couch potato who bears a distorted view on reality. When Charlie himself discovers the final ticket, he and his Grandpa Joe (Jack Albertson) both enter the factory to savor the marvelous surprises awaiting them. However, temptation comes into play: Wonka's sinister rival Arthur Slugworth (Gunter Meisner) has offered each of the children $10,000 in exchange for an Everlasting Gobstopper, a brand new product Mr. Wonka was working on.
    In the latter half of the film, viewers will meet Gene Wilder's Willy Wonka, whose elusive persona and literary quotes make him strangely appealing. Is this man lying or is he telling the truth? In addition, audiences (old and young alike) will catch the delightful sights of orange-faced Oompa-Loompas, a nightmarish Boat Ride, Fizzy Lifting drinks that cause drinkers to float away, and quadruple-size Geese that lay octruple-size eggs! Throughout the journey, the group's four nasty children (and their equally despicable parents), are eliminated one by one in gruesome yet amusing ways: The gluttonous Augustus falls into a chocolate river and is sucked into a boiler. Violet samples a 3-course-dinner gum (despite Wonka's warnings) and inflates into a gigantic blueberry. When Veruca Salt attempts to steal a Golden Goose, she falls into a garbage chute, one that happens to lead down to the furnace! After trying to get photographed onto Wonka's giant T.V. camera, Mike Teevee is shrunk down to the size of a pen; the only way to restore his size is by stretching him out on a taffy-pulling machine! With imaginative sets, clever confections, and pleasant tunes like "Candyman," "Pure Imagination," and "Cheer Up, Charlie," this movie was made to entertain adults first and children afterwards. It's a guilty pleasure to college graduates, much like H.R. Puffenstuff.
    I chose to give this film four stars because I felt that a couple of mistakes were made. For one thing, the nature of Wonka's factory is a little too candy-coated; Roald Dahl himself wanted to have the story as a Grimm fairytale, not a wholesome musical. Also, I personally think that the scene involving the Wonkamobile should have been cut out. The device, which is fueled by gingerale, gingerpop, gingerbeer, and double-bubble burp-a-cola (among other carbonated fluids), really doesn't have anything to do with the story. As a result, it's a little too distracting.
    Now that Tim Burton plans to reimagine the tale, I am gleefully anticipating what alterations he plans to make.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Timeless classic!
    (Spoiler included) I watched this movie on TV for rhe first time when I was 6 years old and I haven't outgrown it since! It is a wonderful story about the power of imagination and how good things eventually come to those who do the right things.
    The movie is based on the Roald Dahl book "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." Willy Wonka is an eccentric candy maker who starts a contest offering a factory tour to five lucky winners who find a golden ticket in their Wonka bars. One of them is Charlie Bucket, an impoverished, but good natured, child who hopes for a better future for himself, his mother and his four grandparents. The other four winners are nasty obnoxious and bratty children. Augustus Gloop is an overeating glutton, Violet Beauregard is a gum chewing fanatic with no manners (digging up her nose while talking about how disgusting spitting is), Veruca Salt is a spoiled brat who wants everything she sees and whines until she gets it and Mike Teavee is a television addict with a smart mouth. One by one, they are eventually done in by their bad habits. Augustus falls into the chocolate river against Wonka's protests and is sucked into a pipe, Violet chews a piece of Wonka's "meal gum," once again against his objections, and turns purple and blows up into a giant blueberry, Veruca goes on a tantrum when Wonka tells her she can't have one of his giant geese and she falls down a garbage chute and Mike wants to be on television so badly, he willingly gets zapped into the size of an insect by Wonka's TV camera. Charlie, by being the respectable child that he is and by not compromising his integrity, not only completes the tour, he wins a prize beyond his wildest dreams.

    The parents make it obvious why their children are so impish. When the children get into trouble at the factory, the parents blame Wonka instead of the kids' own bratty behavior. From the moment they step into the factory, they're complaining and finding fault with everything Wonka does and they take things way too seriously (much like the critics of this film)! I bet if the Oompa Loompas, with their wisdom, raised these little demons, they'd be much better.

    Don't miss this film. It is not only a fun to watch diversion from reality, the messages are very timely and it makes you think about the good that still exists in this world. The critics and nitpickers may not get it but anyone who watches with an open mind and doesn't take it too seriouly will.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Still a great one!
    OK, I know you are saying to yourself, that movie is ancient ~ my kid wouldn't enjoy it. Well, trust me your kid will enjoy it. It is a great movie! For all who may have missed it over the years (is there anyone out there?), the story is about a giant chocolate factory run by a never seen owner (Wilder). Over the years of the factory's operation he has become quite the legend. He decides to open the factory to a few lucky winners of a contest ~ all but one of the winning kids are truly rotten. And as all good stories go, the bad kids get their just "desserts" (sorry, couldn't resist the pun) leaving the good kid to win. A lot of good lessons taught about sharing, greed, gluttony and theft. Pop some popcorn and enjoy it with your kid; you'll be glad you did.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Metaphor for Life
    "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" was my favorite book as a child, this movie remains a favorite of mine even to this day.

    This film was made back in 1971 and is very simple in its style. The special effects are see-through and campy but the story line is a facinating metaphor for life that is forever timeless in its message. Willy Wonka is the creative genius who becomes a recluse in his chocolate factory because of society and its greed and malice. But he never loses his belief that someone in the world exists who can still believe in imagination and dreams. He finds this person in Charlie, a poor child who lives with his mother and four grandparents in a dirty basement home. Charlie has every reason to become dispirited and negative yet he remains a shining light of great positivity regardless of his circumstances. I suspect his attitude comes from the fact that his Grandfather Joe always supports his dreams, the boy never has to hear the word "can't"!

    The chocolate factory holds a contest and several children, including Charlie, get invited behind the doors with Willy Wonka. While on tour they are tested with fame, fortune, greed and honesty until one by one they succumb to the failure of a human heart. All except Charlie, who keeps a smile on his face and wonder in his eyes while being faced with the simple adversities that cause the other children to fail. Sadly I feel the parents are to blame creating children who thrive on material wealth, constant TV watching, gorging on food, and looking for constant attention. The parents of the children who fail refuse to believe in the dream of Willy Wonka surrounding the atomsphere with doubt and negative beliefs. How could anyone survive under such circumstances?

    The Chocolate Factory is filled with wonder, color and silly songs. Regardless of your age it will satisfy your sweet tooth and fill even a hardened heart. It certainly brings to life how parent's affect their children with their own actions and attitudes. Telling a child they "can't" accomplish all that they imagine only assists in stopping the world from greatness. Don't be afraid to dream!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Candy is dandy...
    The film is based on a much-loved children's book, 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory', by Roald Dahl. Dahl wasn't always happy with the changes made between his book and the film, and wasn't always consulted on them. Today probably more people are familiar with the film sequence of events than the book. Charlie is a down-on-his-luck boy who is nonetheless optimistic and happy. He and his mother work to tend for their bed-ridden family members, all living together in a one-room home.

    One day there is an annoucement that Wonka is going to open his factory to visitors, to be chosen more or less at random through finding the Golden Tickets, contained in Wonka bars (a brilliant marketing device back then). Scenes of shoppers' frenzy are shown all around with world, including a Wonka delivery van shown arriving at the White House.

    The five golden tickets are found all around the world - the first one in Dusselheim, Germany, by the fat boy, Augustus Gloop (played by Michael Boliner, who is now a tax accountant in Munich, and is still rather large). The second ticket was found in the UK, by spoiled brat, Veruca Salt (Julie Dawn Cole, the only Wonka child still acting), whose father, Roy Kinnear, is a well-known actor in British cinema. The third ticket was found in the USA, by gum-chewing Violet Beauregarde (Denise Nickerson, now an accountant at a nuclear plant in Colorado), whose used-car-salesman father was played by Leonard Stone (who was selected over Jim Bakus). The fourth ticket was also won in the USA, by Mike Teevee (Paris Themmen, considered a real brat by most of the cast and crew); his frantic mother was played by Dodo Denny (later Nora Denny), who was one of the few minor characters in the film to consistently act after this film. The final ticket at first is reported to be won by some shady businessman from Paraguay, but in the end, that is proven to be a forgery. Of course, Charlie buys a Wonka Bar expecting nothing, and gets the ticket.

    An ominous figure, Slugworth (the arch-enemy of Wonka - who knew chocolate makers also made arch-enemies?), appears to each of the winners, whispering in their ears. Charlie is also confronted, and promised a reward should he bring Slugworth an example of Wonka's latest creation, the Everlasting Gobstopper. One wonders why (a) any candy maker would make a candy that never wears out (thus defeating re-sales), and (b) why Slugworth can't just buy one himself when they are released, analyse it and ruin his own factory the same way? But I digress... Gunter Meisner, a very prolific German actor, played the villain, who wasn't in the book (nor was the 'gobstopper plot').

    The grand day of the event, the winners enter the factory with great fanfare, meeting Wonka (Gene Wilder) for the first time, and get the first taste of his bizarre sense of theatre. (It is reported not only Wilder's idea for the limping/somersault introduction to the crowd, but also a condition of his accepting the role.) From that point on, what was truth? It is ironic that Wonka's entrance doesn't occur until the film is half over. What we remember of the film comes after this, but over half the film is actually set-up. This is rather like the Wizard of Oz, where most of the film is done before we see 'the major character', although admittedly Wonka is far more prominent than Oz's balloonist.

    Wonka, the man of mystery, only ever became even more of a mystery as the tour progressed. He is constantly switching his words ('we have so much time and so little to do'), and there are surprises at every turn. Wonka borrows a lot of his key phrases (Ogden Nash, Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde) and there are a lot of fantasy-inspired elements (Alice in Wonderland, Lord of the Rings).

    At each major scene, something ghastly seems to happen, but in epic-fantasy form, it doesn't seem to matter to the majority, who proceed onward with their quest. In the chocolate room, Augustus Gloop meets his untimely exit from the factory by falling in the chocolate river. Violet turns into a blueberry by chewing experimental gum, and has to be squeezed (squoozed?). Veruca, in the room with the geese who lay the golden eggs, turns out to be a bad egg herself, but has a sporting chance of going down a chute with an inactive furnace. Mike Teevee shrinks in the Wonka version of the Star Trek transporter beam, leaving in the end only Charlie, who is denied his prize of a lifetime of chocolate for a minor infraction.

    It would seem that Wonka had a sinister side in many ways - the boat that carries the prize winners only seated eight, implying that Wonka knew someone would be missing. The Wonkamobile only had seats for four guests. Of course, the children apparently all had sinister sides, too, including Charlie, until the end. None of them let Wonka know of their Slugworth contact.

    In the end, we never know what becomes of the fallen questers - we are led to believe that in this candy factory they got their just desserts. The Oompa-Loompas put the moral to each downfall in song, with a 1970s karaoke-type presentation of the lyrics as they sing. In the end, of course, goodness and justice win out, as the factory is given to Charlie after his act of unwarranted kindness toward Wonka.

    Director Stuart always saw this film as a 'realistic' fantasy film. Those things that are not over the top are very ordinary. The people are not superheroes, and the situations, while fantastic, are not beyond the credible. Stuart also did his best for 'real' reaction - the kids had never seen Gene Wilder before his appearance at the door, the chocolate room in the factory, or the Oompa-Loompas prior to the first scene, either, so their reactions are more natural.

    A great film for children and adults! ... Read more


    9. Anne of Green Gables
    Director: Kevin Sullivan
    list price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6300277089
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 649
    Average Customer Review: 4.81 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com

    This gorgeous adaptation of Lucy Maud Montgomery's classic children's story is well worth watching with the whole family. Produced for Canadian television, it's one of those rare productions that actually sticks to the book and even enhances it through first-rate performances and an excellent script. Set on bucolic Prince Edward Island in the late 19th century, Anne of Green Gables is the story of Anne Shirley, an imaginative and headstrongorphan. When brother and sister Marilla and Mathew Cuthbert decide to adopt an orphan boy to help Matthew work the farm, they are astonished when Anne arrives at the train station by mistake. "What use is she to us?" grumbles the gruff Marilla."We might be of some use to her," answers Matthew, who has taken an instant liking to the talkative Anne.As Anne grows up, her adventures are both hilarious and moving. It's a delight to watch as she forms a friendship with the beautiful Diana and her admirer--the dashing Gilbert Blythe--then dyes her hair green, cracks a slate over Gilbert's head when he calls her "Carrots," and finds a sympathetic teacher who encourages her to attend college.

    Richard Farnsworth is perfect as the shy and gentle bachelor Matthew, who confides to Anne that he never went courting because "I would have had to say something." Colleen Dewhurst delivers a nuanced and powerful performance as Marilla, a seemingly cold-hearted spinster whose no-nonsense exterior conceals a warm heart. And as Anne, Megan Follows strikes the perfect note, maturing from freckle-faced orphan to elegant and poised young woman. --Elisabeth Keating ... Read more

    Reviews (231)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent film!
    This is a terrific adaptation of the classic L.M. Montgomery coming of age story. It centers on young Anne Shirley, a strong willed, independent orphan who is adopted by siblings Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert. They originally wanted to adopt a boy to help out at their farm, but instead received a surprise when Anne arrived at the train station. Anne's adventures growing up are both funny and heart-warming. This is a fantastic movie that will please youngsters and adults alike, as there is something here for everyone! Megan Follows is excellent as Anne Shirley, Colleen Dewhurst is wonderful as the stern but loving Marilla and Richard Farnsworth is great as gentle Matthew. The supporting cast also give splendid performances. Highly recommended!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Timeless memories of a Canadian childhood
    I can still remember the excitement I felt when I first saw Anne of Green Gables almost fifteen years ago. It accurately and lovingly captures the thrills of childhood, of breathless anticipation, the joys of friendship, and the final moment when we must bid our childhood goodbye and take our place in the grownup world. The performances are flawless and capture the original flavour of each of the characters from the book. Megan Follows IS Anne Shirley, Shuyler Grant is a kindred Diana Barry, and Colleen Dewhurst is the stern Marilla Cuthbert who finds her heart unexpectedly embracing the joys of motherhood.

    Everything about Anne of Green Gables is done with the utmost love and respect in regard to the original novel by Lucy Maud Montgomery. Anne is every child, with her eyes open to the world, her thirst for knowledge, her immediate trust, her quest for adventure, and most of all her imagination. Megan Follows captures the timeless appeal of the orphaned Anne with spirit, grace, and wit. Her humorous mishaps, personal struggles, and her newfound love for the Cuthberts as well as her love for Avonlea make her an enduring heroine throughout the ages. Who knows? After seeing this film you may discover that you are a kindred spirit as well!

    5-0 out of 5 stars its a classic!!!
    What can i say, I LOVE this movie. I grew up watching this one and Anne of Avonlea(now the sequel) I also read the books when i was young. I still enjoy watching them as an adult. I just wish i had a daughter to watch it with and enjoy with me. (we have two wonderful boys and most likely wont have any more) The characters fit the roles perfectly and are excellent. You just fall in love with them all.

    5-0 out of 5 stars DVD QUALITY GREAT ! I can see the print of the wallpaper
    After watching this often on vhs I bought a DVD and I noticed the difference right away! You can see the print of fabrics, wallpaper, and details of everything much better. This is a wonderful story and the music is beautiful. All the actors are excellent. Great movie for little girls with red hair! Its not easy growing up with red hair. I love the way Anne is portrayed in this movie. There is a black and white version made in the 1930's and its okay. This movie also shows a girl taking her education seriously. The only thing I didn't like was that Gilbert is a little too much the lovesick fool. I think most guys would have given up on her, she was very mean to him.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Favorite For Any Generation
    This series has always been in my heart and always will be. I can always see myself in Anne Shirley, just as I'm sure every other young girl will. Kevin Sullivan did a beautiful job of bringing to life the works of Lucy M. Montgomery's series of Anne of Green Gables. I loved this movie the first time I saw it on television on PBS and I was thrilled to finally find it on DVD. Anne Shirley is a young orphan girl with a huge imagination, daydreams, and a huge talker. She's transferred from home to home and then back to the orphanage until she is finally picked to live in a town called Avonlea. She lives with a family Marilla & Mathew Cuthbert (played by: Colleen Dewhurst & Richard Farnsworth). After worrying she wouldn't be adopted because she's not a boy she warms their hearts and starts a new life with them. And she then soon meets her bosom friend Diana Barry (Schuyler Grant) and of course Gilbert Blythe (Jonathan Crombie). We follow the lives of these characters that Anne meets along the way. This series is for any young girl or for any girl at any age to enjoy and the entire family. The fun part is you can also see parts of the cast that end up being in Kevin Sullivan's production of Road to Avonlea. But this series is wonderful, charming, and full of adventures. The supporting cast is quite amazing as well they include: Rachel Lynde (Patricia Hamilton), Miss Stacy (Marilyn Lightstone), & Aunt Josephine (Charmion King) just to name a few of my favorites. This movie is also about life and the human heart that we see through Anne's eye's. The DVD is full of tons of great stuff such as Megan Follow's audition, a small behind the scene's moments, missing scene's, & tons more. So I do highly recommend this film for everyone. ... Read more


    10. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
    Director: Mel Stuart
    list price: $19.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6304176287
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 543
    Average Customer Review: 4.55 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (224)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker. ;)
    1971's "Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory" is a colorful cult classic that includes both a witty score and a morality tale. Based on the children's novel by Roald Dahl, the story concerns Charlie Bucket (Peter Ostrum), a poor yet virtuous paperboy who dreams of a better life. With no father, no money, and four bedridden grandparents to support, Charlie's future seems bleak. However, that changes when a contest is started by the town's mysterious candymaker, Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder): 5 Golden Tickets are hidden among the billions of Wonka bars sold all over the world. The lucky buyers who find the tickets will get a lifetime supply of chocolate AND an exclusive tour through the factory. The first half of the movie shows the worldwide hysteria that results from the frantic search for the Tickets. Eventually, four winners are revealed one by one: Veruca Salt (Julie Dawn Cole) is Great Britain's ultimate spoiled brat. Augustus Gloop (Michael Bollner) is a chubby German who considers eating his most favorite hobby. Violet Beauregarde (Denise Nickerson) bears the rude, disgusting habit of constantly chewing gum. Mike Teevee (Paris Themmen) is a cowboy couch potato who bears a distorted view on reality. When Charlie himself discovers the final ticket, he and his Grandpa Joe (Jack Albertson) both enter the factory to savor the marvelous surprises awaiting them. However, temptation comes into play: Wonka's sinister rival Arthur Slugworth (Gunter Meisner) has offered each of the children $10,000 in exchange for an Everlasting Gobstopper, a brand new product Mr. Wonka was working on.
    In the latter half of the film, viewers will meet Gene Wilder's Willy Wonka, whose elusive persona and literary quotes make him strangely appealing. Is this man lying or is he telling the truth? In addition, audiences (old and young alike) will catch the delightful sights of orange-faced Oompa-Loompas, a nightmarish Boat Ride, Fizzy Lifting drinks that cause drinkers to float away, and quadruple-size Geese that lay octruple-size eggs! Throughout the journey, the group's four nasty children (and their equally despicable parents), are eliminated one by one in gruesome yet amusing ways: The gluttonous Augustus falls into a chocolate river and is sucked into a boiler. Violet samples a 3-course-dinner gum (despite Wonka's warnings) and inflates into a gigantic blueberry. When Veruca Salt attempts to steal a Golden Goose, she falls into a garbage chute, one that happens to lead down to the furnace! After trying to get photographed onto Wonka's giant T.V. camera, Mike Teevee is shrunk down to the size of a pen; the only way to restore his size is by stretching him out on a taffy-pulling machine! With imaginative sets, clever confections, and pleasant tunes like "Candyman," "Pure Imagination," and "Cheer Up, Charlie," this movie was made to entertain adults first and children afterwards. It's a guilty pleasure to college graduates, much like H.R. Puffenstuff.
    I chose to give this film four stars because I felt that a couple of mistakes were made. For one thing, the nature of Wonka's factory is a little too candy-coated; Roald Dahl himself wanted to have the story as a Grimm fairytale, not a wholesome musical. Also, I personally think that the scene involving the Wonkamobile should have been cut out. The device, which is fueled by gingerale, gingerpop, gingerbeer, and double-bubble burp-a-cola (among other carbonated fluids), really doesn't have anything to do with the story. As a result, it's a little too distracting.
    Now that Tim Burton plans to reimagine the tale, I am gleefully anticipating what alterations he plans to make.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Timeless classic!
    (Spoiler included) I watched this movie on TV for rhe first time when I was 6 years old and I haven't outgrown it since! It is a wonderful story about the power of imagination and how good things eventually come to those who do the right things.
    The movie is based on the Roald Dahl book "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." Willy Wonka is an eccentric candy maker who starts a contest offering a factory tour to five lucky winners who find a golden ticket in their Wonka bars. One of them is Charlie Bucket, an impoverished, but good natured, child who hopes for a better future for himself, his mother and his four grandparents. The other four winners are nasty obnoxious and bratty children. Augustus Gloop is an overeating glutton, Violet Beauregard is a gum chewing fanatic with no manners (digging up her nose while talking about how disgusting spitting is), Veruca Salt is a spoiled brat who wants everything she sees and whines until she gets it and Mike Teavee is a television addict with a smart mouth. One by one, they are eventually done in by their bad habits. Augustus falls into the chocolate river against Wonka's protests and is sucked into a pipe, Violet chews a piece of Wonka's "meal gum," once again against his objections, and turns purple and blows up into a giant blueberry, Veruca goes on a tantrum when Wonka tells her she can't have one of his giant geese and she falls down a garbage chute and Mike wants to be on television so badly, he willingly gets zapped into the size of an insect by Wonka's TV camera. Charlie, by being the respectable child that he is and by not compromising his integrity, not only completes the tour, he wins a prize beyond his wildest dreams.

    The parents make it obvious why their children are so impish. When the children get into trouble at the factory, the parents blame Wonka instead of the kids' own bratty behavior. From the moment they step into the factory, they're complaining and finding fault with everything Wonka does and they take things way too seriously (much like the critics of this film)! I bet if the Oompa Loompas, with their wisdom, raised these little demons, they'd be much better.

    Don't miss this film. It is not only a fun to watch diversion from reality, the messages are very timely and it makes you think about the good that still exists in this world. The critics and nitpickers may not get it but anyone who watches with an open mind and doesn't take it too seriouly will.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Still a great one!
    OK, I know you are saying to yourself, that movie is ancient ~ my kid wouldn't enjoy it. Well, trust me your kid will enjoy it. It is a great movie! For all who may have missed it over the years (is there anyone out there?), the story is about a giant chocolate factory run by a never seen owner (Wilder). Over the years of the factory's operation he has become quite the legend. He decides to open the factory to a few lucky winners of a contest ~ all but one of the winning kids are truly rotten. And as all good stories go, the bad kids get their just "desserts" (sorry, couldn't resist the pun) leaving the good kid to win. A lot of good lessons taught about sharing, greed, gluttony and theft. Pop some popcorn and enjoy it with your kid; you'll be glad you did.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Metaphor for Life
    "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" was my favorite book as a child, this movie remains a favorite of mine even to this day.

    This film was made back in 1971 and is very simple in its style. The special effects are see-through and campy but the story line is a facinating metaphor for life that is forever timeless in its message. Willy Wonka is the creative genius who becomes a recluse in his chocolate factory because of society and its greed and malice. But he never loses his belief that someone in the world exists who can still believe in imagination and dreams. He finds this person in Charlie, a poor child who lives with his mother and four grandparents in a dirty basement home. Charlie has every reason to become dispirited and negative yet he remains a shining light of great positivity regardless of his circumstances. I suspect his attitude comes from the fact that his Grandfather Joe always supports his dreams, the boy never has to hear the word "can't"!

    The chocolate factory holds a contest and several children, including Charlie, get invited behind the doors with Willy Wonka. While on tour they are tested with fame, fortune, greed and honesty until one by one they succumb to the failure of a human heart. All except Charlie, who keeps a smile on his face and wonder in his eyes while being faced with the simple adversities that cause the other children to fail. Sadly I feel the parents are to blame creating children who thrive on material wealth, constant TV watching, gorging on food, and looking for constant attention. The parents of the children who fail refuse to believe in the dream of Willy Wonka surrounding the atomsphere with doubt and negative beliefs. How could anyone survive under such circumstances?

    The Chocolate Factory is filled with wonder, color and silly songs. Regardless of your age it will satisfy your sweet tooth and fill even a hardened heart. It certainly brings to life how parent's affect their children with their own actions and attitudes. Telling a child they "can't" accomplish all that they imagine only assists in stopping the world from greatness. Don't be afraid to dream!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Candy is dandy...
    The film is based on a much-loved children's book, 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory', by Roald Dahl. Dahl wasn't always happy with the changes made between his book and the film, and wasn't always consulted on them. Today probably more people are familiar with the film sequence of events than the book. Charlie is a down-on-his-luck boy who is nonetheless optimistic and happy. He and his mother work to tend for their bed-ridden family members, all living together in a one-room home.

    One day there is an annoucement that Wonka is going to open his factory to visitors, to be chosen more or less at random through finding the Golden Tickets, contained in Wonka bars (a brilliant marketing device back then). Scenes of shoppers' frenzy are shown all around with world, including a Wonka delivery van shown arriving at the White House.

    The five golden tickets are found all around the world - the first one in Dusselheim, Germany, by the fat boy, Augustus Gloop (played by Michael Boliner, who is now a tax accountant in Munich, and is still rather large). The second ticket was found in the UK, by spoiled brat, Veruca Salt (Julie Dawn Cole, the only Wonka child still acting), whose father, Roy Kinnear, is a well-known actor in British cinema. The third ticket was found in the USA, by gum-chewing Violet Beauregarde (Denise Nickerson, now an accountant at a nuclear plant in Colorado), whose used-car-salesman father was played by Leonard Stone (who was selected over Jim Bakus). The fourth ticket was also won in the USA, by Mike Teevee (Paris Themmen, considered a real brat by most of the cast and crew); his frantic mother was played by Dodo Denny (later Nora Denny), who was one of the few minor characters in the film to consistently act after this film. The final ticket at first is reported to be won by some shady businessman from Paraguay, but in the end, that is proven to be a forgery. Of course, Charlie buys a Wonka Bar expecting nothing, and gets the ticket.

    An ominous figure, Slugworth (the arch-enemy of Wonka - who knew chocolate makers also made arch-enemies?), appears to each of the winners, whispering in their ears. Charlie is also confronted, and promised a reward should he bring Slugworth an example of Wonka's latest creation, the Everlasting Gobstopper. One wonders why (a) any candy maker would make a candy that never wears out (thus defeating re-sales), and (b) why Slugworth can't just buy one himself when they are released, analyse it and ruin his own factory the same way? But I digress... Gunter Meisner, a very prolific German actor, played the villain, who wasn't in the book (nor was the 'gobstopper plot').

    The grand day of the event, the winners enter the factory with great fanfare, meeting Wonka (Gene Wilder) for the first time, and get the first taste of his bizarre sense of theatre. (It is reported not only Wilder's idea for the limping/somersault introduction to the crowd, but also a condition of his accepting the role.) From that point on, what was truth? It is ironic that Wonka's entrance doesn't occur until the film is half over. What we remember of the film comes after this, but over half the film is actually set-up. This is rather like the Wizard of Oz, where most of the film is done before we see 'the major character', although admittedly Wonka is far more prominent than Oz's balloonist.

    Wonka, the man of mystery, only ever became even more of a mystery as the tour progressed. He is constantly switching his words ('we have so much time and so little to do'), and there are surprises at every turn. Wonka borrows a lot of his key phrases (Ogden Nash, Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde) and there are a lot of fantasy-inspired elements (Alice in Wonderland, Lord of the Rings).

    At each major scene, something ghastly seems to happen, but in epic-fantasy form, it doesn't seem to matter to the majority, who proceed onward with their quest. In the chocolate room, Augustus Gloop meets his untimely exit from the factory by falling in the chocolate river. Violet turns into a blueberry by chewing experimental gum, and has to be squeezed (squoozed?). Veruca, in the room with the geese who lay the golden eggs, turns out to be a bad egg herself, but has a sporting chance of going down a chute with an inactive furnace. Mike Teevee shrinks in the Wonka version of the Star Trek transporter beam, leaving in the end only Charlie, who is denied his prize of a lifetime of chocolate for a minor infraction.

    It would seem that Wonka had a sinister side in many ways - the boat that carries the prize winners only seated eight, implying that Wonka knew someone would be missing. The Wonkamobile only had seats for four guests. Of course, the children apparently all had sinister sides, too, including Charlie, until the end. None of them let Wonka know of their Slugworth contact.

    In the end, we never know what becomes of the fallen questers - we are led to believe that in this candy factory they got their just desserts. The Oompa-Loompas put the moral to each downfall in song, with a 1970s karaoke-type presentation of the lyrics as they sing. In the end, of course, goodness and justice win out, as the factory is given to Charlie after his act of unwarranted kindness toward Wonka.

    Director Stuart always saw this film as a 'realistic' fantasy film. Those things that are not over the top are very ordinary. The people are not superheroes, and the situations, while fantastic, are not beyond the credible. Stuart also did his best for 'real' reaction - the kids had never seen Gene Wilder before his appearance at the door, the chocolate room in the factory, or the Oompa-Loompas prior to the first scene, either, so their reactions are more natural.

    A great film for children and adults! ... Read more


    11. Jane Eyre
    Director: Robert Stevenson
    list price: $19.98
    our price: $19.98
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    Asin: 6302878535
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 589
    Average Customer Review: 4.33 out of 5 stars
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    Made two years afterCitizen Kane, this 1943 version of Charlotte Brontë'sJane Eyre sure looks like star Orson Welles muscled his way behind the camera much of the time. (In fact, costar Joan Fontaine--who plays the title character--has maintained that Welles methodically did just that every day on the set.) Not that the film's official director was a hack: Robert Stevenson, who later had a busy career at Disney making numerous live-action hits for the studio, such asMary Poppins, gets the credit. But there's no mistaking Welles's masterful hand in the film's bold and creative look, and there's no getting away from his enigmatic charisma as Rochester, the widower who takes in Jane as a governess to his daughter. An engrossing, gorgeous film, there's even a small role for Elizabeth Taylor at the beginning as Jane's unlucky, doomed friend at a cruel boarding school.--Tom Keogh ... Read more

    Reviews (40)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Dark Romance
    Joan Fontaine stars as Charlotte Bronte's title character, a governess who began her life as an unloved orphan, raised at a brutal school, now living on an estate run by the mysterious Orson Welles. Lots of things go bump in the night at Thornfield, one of the many strange things about her new home. Welles dominates the film, with a forceful, blunt performance as Rochester, the man with the terrible past. Fontaine is subdued and quietly strong as Jane. The rest of the cast don't get much of a chance to shine with Welles in the film, although Peggy Ann Garner as the young Jane is quite memorable. The look of the film is often amazing. Dark shadows and fog are used to great effect, and there is an unreal quality to it all that matches the story well. When I read the novel in university, I enjoyed it for all of its gothic touches and mysterious tone. Although the film does not follow the novel's storyline exactly, it does maintain that Gothic feel. This film is yet another example why black and white filmmaking can be so effective.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Love is a mystery
    Charlotte Bronte's story of an unwanted orphan child growing up in a cold strict school for orphans in 17th century England is beautifully told in the 1943 motion picture Jane Eyre, directed by Robert Stevenson and released by twentieth century fox this grossly under rated movie starting Orson Wells as the dark mysterious Edward Rochester, Joan Fontaine as the plain adult Jane Eyre who becomes a governess for Mr. Rochester's charge Adele. This movie is for anyone who fells like true love is a lost cause, which has had a bad childhood and thinks no one could ever love him or her.
    Peggy Ann Garner plays the young Jane Eyre, who was not wanted by her late uncle's wife and children after the lost of her parents. She had never had a friend or family. While she was at the school she met Helen who was played by no other then twelve year old Elizabeth Taylor.
    This movie makes you feel for Jane on a personal level. Mr. Rochester and Jane falls in love, but they both had troubled past. Jane had issues with her Aunt. Mr. Rochester has is own in demons in the attic. Jane being heart broken left the old Mysterious English Manor to face her past. When she received word that a tragedy has stricken the Rochester manor.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Good 1940's movie but laughable adaptation of the book
    Of all the cinematic Rochesters I've seen, Orson Welles most closely resembles him. But that's where the similarity between the book and this movie end: Welles' performance is a string of screaming fits, nothing like the multi-faceted character of the book.

    Joan Fontaine is completely wrong for the part; she's absolutely gorgeous. She makes up for this fact by keeping her head down and shoulder's hunched forward, so we all know that she's plain and humble. Sorry Joan! It doesn't work! You still look gorgeous and completely wrong for the part. Furthermore, Jane wasn't beaten down psychologically, as she is portrayed in this film; considering all of her negative circumstances, she should have been, but she was always able to maintain her steely self-respect. Joan Fontain looks absolutely crushed throughout the entire movie.

    The relationship between the two main characters consists, then, of Orson screaming at Joan and Joan hunching down -- not exactly romantic chemistry and nothing like the book which depicts one of the most romantic stories of literature.

    I can understand the problem screenwriters have shortening a story for a screen adaptation, but this one really takes the cake: Jane is about to go back to Lowood School, of all places, when she hears Rochester calling her back to Thornfield; instead of almost making a choice to marry St. John Rivers, she almost decides to work for Mr. Brocklehurst again. Huh?

    All that being said, a 40's movie is a 40's movie. If you like movies from that time period (and if you can forget about the book for a few hours), there are some very interesting and enjoyable aspects to this; it's a quality film. But if you love the book, I would recommend re-reading it instead of watching this.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Hauntingly Beautiful!
    This video was the first black and white movie I had ever seen (with the exception of Lon Chaney's "The Phantom of the Opera," and Mexican Cinema star Cantinflas from the 40's). After watching this movie I became a weird teenager who was all into black and white movies.

    This movie is missing some important stuff from Bronte's novel, but it is still a spectacular film with a plain but pretty Joan Fontaine and an intimidating tall dark and handsome Orson Welles. The whole plot makes the story perfect for the effects of black and white film. I've seen newer color versions and I must say that none of them come even close to this one.

    I have no idea why in the world this movie isn't out on DVD over here. I've even written to the people that make the Criterion Collection and have suggested to put this movie in with all their other good stuff. Still, I keep watching the video every two weeks. I can't get bored of this one.

    5-0 out of 5 stars WOW!
    I loved this movie! The beginnig DEPREESED ME THOUGH! This is movie is 10/10! It was great,suspensful and romantic! ... Read more


    12. Van Helsing
    Director: Stephen Sommers
    list price: $22.98
    our price: $19.99
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    Asin: B0002KVUMK
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 229
    Average Customer Review: 3.32 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (265)

    4-0 out of 5 stars See the Movie Before Reviewing It
    Why do people pan a movie so harshly when they haven't even seen it yet? I have seen VAN HELSING in an audience preview, and I will tell you that the trailer doesn't come close to describing the film. As the Universal folks said, the special effects weren't finished in time for the trailer... but the final product is absolutely stunning.

    No, critics will probably not like this fun romp through Van Helsing's monster adventures. It might not win an Academy Award for its script. But if you liked The Mummy or other epic adventures of its type, you ARE going to be the right audience for VAN HELSING.

    This movie is just plain fun. The story pays homage to the classic monster legacy films in Universal's vault, as well as many modern day adventures. Van Helsing is a James Bond character of dark Transylvania. And his battles against Dracula are a roller coaster ride with non-stop action and vivid, beautiful scenery.

    If you're an art film snob or the type who overanalyzes everything, forget about VAN HELSING. You've missed the entire point -- badly -- and you'll spoil all the fun. If you like the occasional mindless, delicious, sit-back-and-hold-on entertainment, this is your kind of movie.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Laughably bad summer monster
    Before I completely devour this horrible movie, let me say that I was a fan of both Mummy films by director Sommers. That being said, I almost walked out of this movie. Poor Hugh Jackman can't save this wreck. His performance and Kate Beckinsale's looks are the only redeeming elements of this otherwise terrible outing. The effects are very sub-par by today's standards, especially in the fake-looking warewolves and annoying brides. Gollum and even Dobby put them to shame. For that matter, so does Shrek (who makes a cameo in the beginning as Mr. Hyde, it seems). Everything about this movie is over-the-top in the worst of ways. The dialogue in particular. Richard Roxburgh's portrayal of Dracula couldn't help but make me think of the count from Sesame Street. Also, the shameless rip-offs from completely unrelated movies like James Bond and Jackman's claim-to-fame X-men only cheapened it more. In short, I'll always remember Van Helsing as a two-hour viewing of my watch that couldn't go by fast enough.

    5-0 out of 5 stars It's cool.. if you like all that stuff of vampires
    i think thats is a great movie. the people who likes to see movies like "queen of the damned" and that kind of stuff you will love it but isn't similar. when i saw it i fell in love with that movie. but you have to watch it and understand it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Helsing is HELLISH
    This is probably one of the greatest action films of all time. With all of your favorite characters such as Frankenstein, Dracula, Wolfman, and Mr. Hyde, this movie is a blast. Van Helsing is a monster killer packed with the most advanced weapons of his time. I guarentee that you will enjoy watching Helsing match all of you favorite monsters and I urge you to rent it. It will be worth the money.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Van Helsing Kicks Butt!
    A horror movie freak's DVD collection is not complete with out this wonderful movie. This genera-blending flick brings together some of the greatest horror characters in movie history. Imagine this: The wolfman, Frankenstien and Dracula all smushed into one action packed movie. This movie stars Hugh Jackman as the famous Van Helsing. Many people may think that this is just a stupid plotless movie that just throws these monsters together but it all really connects beautifully. Comedy, romance, horror and action: this movie has it all! Plus the very good looking Hugh Jackman beating up some of the most famous monsters ever! A great sound track, stunning special effects and a very well thought out story line adds to it. ... Read more


    13. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
    Director: Steven Spielberg
    list price: $9.95
    our price: $9.95
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    Asin: 6300214435
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 851
    Average Customer Review: 3.94 out of 5 stars
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    The Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) adventure after Raiders of the Lost Ark is more violent than its predecessor, but also looser, more imaginative, and finally more satisfying. Still organized like a series of connected cliffhangers, the story (set 10 years before Raiders) involves Indy's attempted rescue of stolen children from a pagan cult. Director Steven Spielberg draws upon sundry cinematic influences, particularly Gunga Din, for an air of classic adventure, though one can also find traces of John Wayne movies in Jones's relationship with a woman (Kate Capshaw) who's come along for the bumpy ride. The film's opening bit, in which the antidote to a poison Jones has swallowed keeps bouncing around a nightclub just out of his reach, is a blast. --Tom Keogh ... Read more

    Reviews (126)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
    The second installment in the Indiana Jones, set 2 years before Raiders, finds Indy going after the Shonkara stones and trying to rescue children enslaved by the Thagee Cult. He is joined by young Short Round (Key He Quan) and nighclub vocalist Willie Scott, played very well by Kate Capshaw, the current Mrs.Spielberg. While Karen Allen's Marion Ravenwood was a two-fisted hellraiser, Scott is a pampered indoor brat, and in turn is brilliant, plus her character is quite funny also, as is Short Round. Amrish Puri is a chilling as the villainous cult leader.

    Though Temple of Doom lacks Sallah, Marcus Brody, and the Nazis, it is an improvement over Raiders in more than a few ways. To start, Ford is even better as Indy for his character is tested more. Douglas Slocombe's photography is more effective, and John Williams' music score is even more diverse and genius. Temple of Doom is also more creative, emotionally effective, and imaginative. However, it lacks the spectacle of the first film and is far more controversial and violent.This is the movie that created the PG-13 rating.

    Dennis Muren's stunning Oscar-winning visual effects match Richard Edlund's effects in Raiders, yet they are not as awe-inspiring or important to the story. Elliot Scott's production design is terrific, and the cult sequences are very intense. The stunts top the ones in Raiders and are really good. The most memorable sequences have to be the mine car chase, the creature feature dinner, the Shanghai nightclub opening, the duel at the cult platform, and the rope bridge finale, incredible. Though Temple of Doom isn't as good as Raiders or Last Crusade it is highly recommended and is one of the best adventure films ever made.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Indiana Jones and the Temple of Political Correctness
    As stated many times, the second film of the Indiana Jones trilogy is (by far) the darkest of the series. While Raiders was an extremely fun viewing of Dr. Jones having a fistfight with the entire German army, and Last Crusade was a lighthearted quasi-Parsifal with Sean Connery, Temple of Doom is a tense, truly disturbing (at times) adventure that takes place in an underground pit just a few feet above hell. And it's my favorite of the Indy movies.

    Harrison Ford is brilliant in the role that he was born to play. Although the character of Indy is shrouded in macho trappings, this IS set in the thirties. So, I don't find the supposed "sexism" to be all that off-putting. Ford's considerable acting skills are greatly tested by Temple. There's a scene where Indy is being tortured by members of the evil Thuggee cult, and the viewer is absolutely disturbed by the scene. A lesser actor would have made this an exercise of pure camp.

    Kate Capshaw is, quite frankly, a little annoying as Willie Scott. I don't think it's necessarily Capshaw's fault; her character could have been played by Audrey Hepburn and still would have been irritating. Willie, as remarked by some reviewers, screams her head off during most of the movie. Eventually, you kind of hope the bugs or the lava will finish her off. Still, some scenes with the character work. The opening sequence and Willie's behavior at the palace are charming.

    Ke Huy Quan is pretty good as Short Round, Indy's temporary sidekick. Again, it's the character that is a bit distracting, not the actor. Ke Huy Quan is delightful in the poker scene with Indy in the jungle and is much more of a help than Willie could ever be, but some of the scenes of Short Round kicking the poop out of the cult members are a little laughable.

    Amrish Puri is wonderful as the awfully evil Mola Ram. This guy makes Belloq look like Maurice Chevalier with such an intensely evil leer and rather septic heart operation procedures. Roshan Seth is also brilliant as the devious prime minister. Both of these fine actors are also in the wonderful movie "Gandhi."

    Philip Stone's character is something of a Col. Blimp, yet a very well acted Col. Blimp. I'm sure he probably listens to Elgar while sipping his tea in his bath. The rest of the supporting cast are also excellent: Lao Che and the Indian holy men are very enjoyable, if a bit one-dimensional.

    The accusations of the film being racist are, in my opinion, a little silly. Yes, Hinduism is much more tolerant of a religion than Christianity could ever hope to be. As far as I know, there wasn't ever a Kali cult that performed human sacrifices, and it can be easily and convincingly argued that British rule in India was mostly malign. However, stating that all of the Indians in the film are portrayed as weak or devious is like stating that all the Germans in the other two films are portayed as cruel and militaristic. I can understand a person's sensitivity to such things, but since it's an Indy movie, naturally Indy is going to be portrayed as the wonderful savior while everyone else is reduced to being either dependent on him or actively trying to dispatch him. In my opinion, problems do arise when people (typically Americans) see movies like this and take them as real history. For instance, many Americans who have seen Braveheart now consider themselves experts on Scottish history. Occasionally, when I eat Indian food (which is delicious), I hear some bozo talking about eating monkey's brains, as was also stated by another reviewer. I can understand a person of Indian heritage being very irritated by such behavior, but I don't think it's entirely fair to blame the filmmakers for the behavior of some of the more stupid people who watch their movies. Hopefully, in the next Indiana Jones film, Indy will take on the scariest religious cult yet: America's religious Right. I can think of a certain self-righteous someone who could use a few good punches.

    5-0 out of 5 stars To me, this is the best of the series
    The opening is my favorite in all movies. My next favorite is the opening for Men In Black. I became a fan of Kate Capshaw when I saw her in this movie. She shows three times the personality of the female leads in Raiders of the Lost Arch and The Last Crusade. She made the movie a standout to me. I enjoy Short Round too. I believe that there is plenty of character development in this movie, and character development in a movie is extremely to me. I honestly don't understand some other reviewer's complaints.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Too Dark,Too Violent,and Too Pointless!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    By far,The temple of Doom is the weakest in the trilogy of Indiana Jones.It focuses too much on action that there is hardly any room for character development or,more importanly,plot.Overall,watch it if you liked yhe first film.Otherwise,skip it and watch the third film instead. Note:there are two things to note: one,this film is set before Raiders of the Lost Ark,making this a prequel and two:if you have children younger than thirteen,DON'T let them watch this one.This has very graphic violence.The PG rating is a joke!!!!!!!!

    2-0 out of 5 stars Not nearly as good as 'Raiders' or 'Last Crusade'
    Watch this movie if you want to pass an afternoon with a bland movie. Kate Capshaw is a great actress but her character was very annoying. Karen Black's strong female lead in 'Raiders' is by far the better of the female leads from the trilogy. ... Read more


    14. James and the Giant Peach
    Director: Henry Selick
    list price: $19.99
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    Asin: 6304155972
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 412
    Average Customer Review: 3.71 out of 5 stars
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    Roald Dahl's modern classic for children becomes a delightful combination of live action and stop-motion animation by the team that made The Nightmare Before Christmas: director Henry Selick and producers Tim Burton (Batman) and Denise Di Novi. The story concerns young James (played for real and through voice-overs by Paul Terry), who is orphaned and left in the charge of two cruel aunts (Miriam Margolyes, Joanna Lumley). Rescued by a mysterious fellow (Pete Postlethwaite), James ends up inside a giant peach, drifting over the Atlantic Ocean in the company of a gentleman grasshopper (voiced by Simon Callow), a fast-talking centipede (Richard Dreyfuss), an anxious earthworm (David Thewlis), a matronly ladybug (Jane Leeves), and a sexy spider (Susan Sarandon). The collection of actors and their creepy-crawly alter egos are a delight, especially when some of the song-and-dance numbers (tunes are written by Randy Newman) get everyone going. --Tom Keogh ... Read more

    Reviews (38)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Great Movie! Special Edition?
    This is a great film, and follows the legacy of classics such as Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas. It is stop motion animation, and every step of the journey is simply magical! The story (written by R Dahl) is about a young boy name James that lives with his two creul aunts, after his parents tragically die. One day they notice that a peach starts to grow, on their peach tree! The mysterious part is that no peach has grown before on the elderly tree! Soon the peach grow so large that it is bigger than their home! James crawls into the peach and meets some new friends played by Jane Leeves (Fraiser), Susan Surandon (Little Women), and a host of others! Soon the peach makes way down the hill and off on a magical journey!

    Another great audio/visual DVD experience from Disney! I'am not sure why they called it a Special Edition. There is just the usual DVD features, nothing special. They probably could have done more extensive interviews with Jane, Susan and the singer/songwritter Randy Newman.

    Still a great DVD! Next time look at Tarzan or A Bug's Life, Disney!

    4-0 out of 5 stars One of the best movies made since "Nightmare."
    I personally like "James and the Giant Peach" because it's a movie that has something in it for everyone. The animation is great and I like the songs. My siblings enjoy it too. One of my brothers can't even hear the title without going berserk, because he really likes the Centipede. I like it becuase Jack Skellington (The hero from "Nightmare Before Christmas") makes a cool cameo appearance in it. It doesn't surprise me. Tim Burton was one of the producers. Anyway, it is a cute story and has something evryone in the family can enjoy. "James" is also very detailed. Inside the peach, you can recognize everday items that are literally larger than life, like a spool of thread and a seed packet. The only reason I give four stars is because it isn't as detailed as it should be, and the animation could use a little bit of improvement.

    4-0 out of 5 stars a good book also
    this is a very sorowful tale of horrible women who mistreat a small child called james.he finds some magic ..........mmmmmmmm.............somethings which effect whatever they touch magicly.eventualy it turns a peach into a giant peach.james gets into it and rides with some bugs across the sea from london to new york.it is animated so no stars again.it is very sad at the beginning,but picks up so some children may get worked up.tim burton is in charge again,so it is a gem.it is one of his best works.the 2evil chicks at the start are terrible and have no real place in a childrens movie.the book is excellent also.our teacher read it to us in the 5th grade.this one is great!

    2-0 out of 5 stars Perfect for Children; Fails to Entertain Adults
    All children should see this, better yet -read it. The book was actually read to my class by our fifth grade teacher and our imaginations really soared.

    The movie is a let down from the world I imagined. Also, this movie is not suitable for adults. It hardly held my attention, the songs are weak, and there is very little (if any) embedded adult humor.

    Adult Burton enthusiasts should avoid this movie.

    5-0 out of 5 stars James and the Giant Peach great movied to view on dvd
    james (paul terry) is a nice and quite moral little boy who has two loving parents. while near the beach, he and his mom get killed (although this is not shown since it's a pg film) by a rhinoceros. yes this is a fantasy film in part and there are many magical elements in the film. james custody then is then taken over by two ugly aunts: aunt spiker (joanna lumley from "absolutely fabulous" fame) and aunt sponge (miriam margolyes) who are classic examples of adults who abuse their children. they are the classic example of the trash and evil nature that exist in all wretched adults who seek exploit others
    for their wealth. in fact, james's aunts use him as basically a slave to work around the house. they starve him and feed the breadcrumbs that are in the trash. they yell at him when james wants to make new friends and talk to kids who he can't
    relate to. nah it doesn't get much lower than quality of life aunt sponge and aunt spiker have on james. one day a mysterious man gives james a mysterious bag full of crocodile tongues I believe, which he says are magic and can make James dreams come
    true. In this case, James dream was to go to New York City and see Empire State Building. It was actually both James parent's dreams and James dream. However, even though James parent's are long gone, James still wants to go to New York an accomplish the dream he and his parents set out to do. This is one impressive kid, he has a big heart and the kind of determination that almost no adults have nowadays. That's one lesson of the film right there , which is not to give up on one's dream, it's literally embodied in this great kid. So this special bag of magic combines with a small peach to grow into a gigantic peach which Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker capitalize for their own selfish profits!!!! Now if you think this made James's life any easier youd be wrong. Nope James's life continues as before, even wore as his rich selfish Aunt have become greedier and more manipulative and more vindictive. It's hard to believe that these "aunts" are the blood relative of James. Now before I go on, I couldn't help but think of James and Harry Potter. Sure Harry Potter was an orphan, but he and James are taken in by their slimy relatives who basically want to exploit and abuse them without any rights whatsover. Potter eventually escapes his vile relatives and so does James. Potter becomes one of the most loved characters at Hogwarts and James also near the end (without revealing too much) becomes
    one of the most loved kids in the world. Anyhow James interests in the peach grows huge to the point with the aid of the magic bad of tongues , James becomes magically converted to small size and invades the beach. Inside the beach, James discovers a group of zany characters all symbolizing common day insects who have now made James the center of attention. James meeting the characters of Mr. Grasshopper (Simon
    Callow), Mr. Centipede (Richard Dreyfuss), Ms. Ladybug (Jane Leeves from Frasier), Ms. Spider (Susan Sarandon), learns that they have been watching him as he is mistreated by his aunts and know that James dreams of going to New York City. Eventually James learns that the characters not only want to go with him but they are going to help him
    on his journey as well. This is a great movie about friendship as well. Let's face facts it's not likely James would have gone to New York on his own, but these group of wonderful friends give the help and encouragement to do it, when he needs it.

    When James and the group decide on a plan to go to New York City, they're journey is stalled by several dangerous adventures which include a metallic shark, dead caribbean pirates, and the hazardous condition which threaten to end their journey. However that isn't stopping anyone and James and his friends, as a group are determined to make it New York and James is determined to make his and his parents dream come true.... As you can see you can describe the movie any better than better, and the movie itself is loaded with amazing special effects that elevate this entertaining fantasy world that James has now come into contact with. In fact when I first looked at the effects, I thought I was watching another classic fantasy film like in "The Nightmare Before Christmas", and guess what both films were directed by the same great director, Henry Selick. I was success and an eye for greatness embodied in fantasy is a signature for
    Selick. He really outdoes himself here.

    Sony Imageworks and a trio of great animators provide the stop motion technology and animation that make the world of James and The Giant Peach so fantastic. Speaking of fantastic the voice talents in this film are all great with Sarandon, Dreyfuss , Leeves, and David Thewlis as Mr. Earthworm are great, you can tell
    that they captured the characters really well, but the person who outshines them is Paul Terry as James, he give's quite a performance and I couldn't think anyone better to do the role he did. So as you can see James and The Giant Peach is far from being just a kids flick, it's that kind of stupid attitude that shows the true ignorance of so called critics who we'll miss out on the many meanings of films like "James and The Giant Peach". In fact one critic even mentioned that the film brings up ideas by Karl Marx for example the relationship of the slave, and master which are true in some regard, but above this a film that really does capture the spirit of having a dream and not quitting until he or she achieves that dream, because as you watch the ending, you can see in the ending, that James's dream really affects many people, not just himself. I could go and on about how great "James and The Giant Peach" but I think I've nailed everything good about it, all that's left now is to recommend the film to those who haven't seen it.

    DVD Details:

    Ah, the DVD is excellent coming up with several extra features:

    *Commentary

    *Behind the scenes on the making of the movie

    * A special music video by Randy Newman who wrote several songs for the movie

    * A beautiful transfer of the movie shown in letterbox format.

    *Theatrical trailer

    * About 13 character sketches on the characters themselves giving a glimpse
    into the artistic process of the film

    * Dolby Digital Surround sound.

    As you can see a good DVD definitely worth checking out especially if you want
    more details about the film. ... Read more


    15. Giant
    Director: George Stevens
    list price: $14.95
    our price: $14.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6304239149
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 384
    Average Customer Review: 4.19 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com essential video

    They call it Giant because everything in this picture is big, from the generous running time (more than 200 minutes) to the sprawling ranch location (a horizon-to-horizon plain with a lonely, modest mansion dropped in the middle) to the high-powered stars. Stocky Rock Hudson stars as the confident, stubborn young ranch baron Bick Benedict, who woos and wins the hand of Southern belle Elizabeth Taylor, a seemingly demure young beauty who proves to be Hudson's match after she settles into the family homestead. For many the film is chiefly remembered for James Dean's final performance, as poor former ranch hand Jett Rink, who strikes oil and transforms himself into a flamboyant millionaire playboy. Director George Stevens won his second Oscar for this ambitious, grandly realized (if sometimes slow moving) epic of the changing socioeconomic (and physical) landscape of modern Texas, based on Edna Ferber's bestselling novel. The talented supporting cast includes Mercedes McCambridge as Bick's frustrated sister, put out by the new "woman of the house"; Chill Wills as the Benedicts' garrulous rancher neighbor; Carroll Baker and Dennis Hopper as the Benedicts' rebellious children; and Earl Holliman and Sal Mineo as dedicated ranch hands. --Sean Axmaker ... Read more

    Reviews (62)

    5-0 out of 5 stars The quintessential Texas epic loaded with stars!
    This 202-minute slow-paced drama exemplifies the lives of three generations of cattlemen on a grandiose west Texas cattle ranch at the onset of the oil boom. Being a native Texan with relatives living close to the area near Marfa, Tx where GIANT was filmed, I LOVE this movie for the sheer drama and myth of our state. (and yes, there ARE some exaggerations) But it's also a well-crafted movie with exemplary performances by Rock Hudson, Elizabeth Taylor, James Dean, and a very young Dennis Hopper! Viewers seeking a fast-action adrenaline-pumping film probably will be bored by GIANT, but viewers who enjoy classical performances, historical sagas, (and old movies) will cherish this movie. It's sort of like a western "GWTW"! They don't make 'em like this anymore!

    4-0 out of 5 stars A gigantic screen presence
    What about this movie isn't big? Big stars (Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson); big state (Texas); big ranch (2 million acres of prime cattle land), and big length; at 202 minutes, this film runs about 45 minutes too long. The story is the familiar one about grandiosity run amok; the moral, which has been done to death, is that the simple life is the one best worth living. We've seen it all before. So why see this movie? In two words: James Dean. In his last film before his tragic death on the Freeway at the age of 24, Dean showed that he was what his legion of fans always claimed: a true genius. Try to imagine anyone else in the role of Jett Rink , and the character remains a cipher - lifeless, dull, nothing. It took Dean to bring it to life and make it his own. In this movie, James Dean and Jett Rink become indistinguishable from each other. And perhaps only an actor as brilliant as Dean could turn Rink from a character we love in the first half of the film, to a character we hate at the end. His drunken tirade near the movie's end is a tour de force. Dean's magnificent performance doesn't take away from the very creditable acting by Rock Hudson as the millionaire rancher Bick Benedict, Elizabeth Taylor as his wife Leslie, the young Sal Mineo, and especially Mercedes McCambridge as Bick's bitter, sexually frustrated sister with an unrequited passion for Jett Rink; but next to Dean's knockout performance, they pale into mere adequacy. Forget everything else; this is Dean's movie.

    1-0 out of 5 stars This is Texas?
    I recently decided to view this film. Let's see - a reference to Neiman-Marcus - some wide open spaces, some cattle and oil wells. O.K. - but this film does not really tell about Texas and Texans. Thankfully, Chill Wills (from Seagoville, TX) was in it. He was the most Texan thing about this film. I wish I had something more positive to say - but I don't.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Giant Is Not A Widescreen Film
    The product information here should be carefully read, as it reveals that this edition of Giant has been transferred in a 1:1.66 letterbox transfer. This is a travesty. Giant was filmed and released in the classic 1:1.33 "Academy" aspect ratio, which also happens to be the aspect ratio for NTSC analog television. George Stevens disliked widescreen processes, although he was forced to use them by studios on later films.
    The time has come to put a stop to these unnecessary, phoney "restored" versions of classics. It's just a marketing ploy to squeeze more money out of old warhorses. Going back to the good old days of the laserdisc, I never much cared about the extras that were first introduced by Criterion and later imitated by the major studios. I've always responded to a high quality video transfer taken from the best film elements available. Getting the aspect ratio wrong and mutilating the images of Steven's classic film makes everything else irrelevant.
    Thank goodness I still have my laserdiscs. Failing that, grab a copy on VHS.

    5-0 out of 5 stars FANTASTIC!
    The DVD is superb -- I do not know what all the complaints about sound, etc. are all about! My goodness, this film is almost 50 years old -- and I think it is in wonderful shape!

    I purchased this video because I have become a big James Dean film, but the acting of Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, Carol Baker, and Dennis Hopper were splendid.

    To think that Hudson was a mere 29, Taylor 23, and Dean 23 and could play characters who age 30 years with such reality is a true testament to their genius! Of course, the makeup artists must also receive recognition.

    The most disturbing portion of the film to me is when Hudson confronts "Sarge" the restaurant owner in a fist fight and when "Sarge" lands into the juke box, "The Yellow Rose of Texas" begins to play. However, this epic film is full of irony and subtle twists and nuances -- to really grasp the entire message this film needs to be viewed more than one time.

    The irony of the Mexican children singing The National Anthem during the funeral of Angel (played by a very young Sal Mineo) touched me. Little Angel was a person who died for the United States and yet was the focus of bigotry from his impoverished birth until his death.

    Or course, in my opinion, there was and never will be another James Dean -- it is heartbreaking to watch this dramatic genius in the final film performance before his untimely demise. Like Buddy Holly, I will always wonder where Dean's career would have gone.

    Carol Baker is fantastic in her first film role and the very young Dennis Hopper's performance is equally memorable.

    This film speaks to the injustices of racial bigotry that unfortunately will always exist except in a utopian world.

    The additions to this DVD make it a must-buy!

    Please don't hesitate to purchase -- this DVD is worth every penny -- and then some!

    Oh, the editorial review refers to Elizabeth Taylor as a Southern Belle and this is incorrect. Leslie Benedict is from Maryland and even makes the comment to Hudson and his crownies that she was from the "Center of Politics" when Hudson tries to push her aside so the men can talk "Business and Politics". ... Read more


    16. Yentl
    Director: Barbra Streisand
    list price: $19.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6301978587
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 1111
    Average Customer Review: 4.43 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com essential video

    Barbra Streisand made her directorial debut with this 1983 adaptation of the Isaac Bashevis Singer story about a young Eastern European woman (Streisand) who disguises herself as a male at the turn of the century in order to get an education. Except for an excessive musical score with too many songs and Streisand's tiresome tendency to play characters who suppress their beauty, the film is crisp and engaging, and the gender-bending love story complications are fun, if gimmicky. Streisand gives a smart, vulnerable performance and gets fresh work from costars Mandy Patinkin and Amy Irving.--Tom Keogh ... Read more

    Reviews (56)

    4-0 out of 5 stars A Triumph for the Director, Not the Actress
    When "Yentl" was first released it proved to be neither the I-told-you-so triumph producer-director-star Barbra Streisand hoped, nor the total failure nay-sayers gleefully predicted. In years since, "Yentl" has become the punchline for many jokes (men who were dragged to see this with their wives or girlfriends can't seem to say enough nasty things about it), but most of those jokes aren't warranted.

    As a director, Streisand has much to be proud of. She gets stellar performances from co-stars Mandy Patinkin and Amy Irving (Streisand has proven herself to be an actor's director), the photography is lush and she makes the non-commercial story quite compelling. The movie's main weakness, though, is Streisand's work in front of the camera. Being miscast is nothing new for the star of "Hello, Dolly!" and "A Star is Born," but usually she's buoyed by her star power. In "Yentl," that star power is a detriment. This is a movie that needed an actress, not a star.

    However, not many film actresses have Streisand's voice, and this is a musical, after all. The songs in "Yentl" (all sung by Streisand; fellow singer Patinkin doesn't even hum along) function as internal monologues, and as such they work fine in the context of the movie. But this is no "Funny Girl"--despite a finale that looks very similar to that movie's "Don't Rain on My Parade" sequence. There are few tunes that'll be stuck in your head by the final credits. Turning "Yentl" into a musical seemed more of a concession to the studio, anyway.

    Despite its shortcomings, and despite what all those snarky husbands and boyfriends say about it, "Yentl" proved Streisand's formidable talents aren't just limited to singing and acting.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Why isn't this on DVD!
    I just adore this movie. Great acting, sweet story, lots of culture and absolutely fabulous music... I listen to the soundtrack all the time.

    Barbara Streisand is perfect at playing an intelligent, yet vulnerable woman in a time and place in which women were supposed to be illiterate and considered to be silly. Her father was a more forward-thinking man in a culture that considered teaching a woman to read something perverse and criminal. When her father dies,she loses everything... women can't read, own property or make decisions concerning the course of her life.

    She decides that her persuit of knowledge of the holy scriptures is too important to let the opportunity slip through her fingers, so she cuts her hair and lives life as a male Rabbinical student. Life takes a twist she doesn't expect when she falls for her classmate and subsequently is forced to marry a young girl.

    There are a lot of laughing-out-loud moments, but this is mostly just an extremely sweet story of love, sacrifice, tradition and freedom. It's definitely a feel-good movie that will put a lump in your throat. I highly recommend this film.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Poor Quality Copy
    The VHS desperately needs remastering. If people want to see Babs dressed up like a man, then we need to get this released on DVD.
    I know I can't wait!!!

    4-0 out of 5 stars LESS WOULD OF BEEN MORE
    I love Barbra. I saw her final Concert in Los Angeles so I am a fan! I like this movie! HOWEVER I did not Love it! I think this movie is TOO LONG! Since this is Streisand's baby you can see every frame was a labor of love! If you want to see a great Streisand movie get "Funny Girl" However Barbra if your reading I would trust you would do a great job of acting and directing in the muscial adaption of Sunset Boulevard! You are the greatest star of them all!

    5-0 out of 5 stars There are moments you remember all your life...
    ... and seeing Yentl certainly was such a moment. The movie had a profound impact on my life when I was a girl of 14. More than 10 years later, it has not lost any of its message. "Revisiting" Yentl from time to time has helped me choose the path I really want to go. Some of my dreams have come true, but there is more to come, I am sure. It also gives me courage to do what I need to, like Yentl, and like Mrs. Streisand whose work as female director was groundbreaking at the time. Chapeau! ... Read more


    17. Imitation of Life
    Director: Douglas Sirk
    list price: $9.98
    our price: $9.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000005XPV
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 573
    Average Customer Review: 4.45 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (103)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Ultra-Sentimental 2nd Treatment of "Aunt Jemima Story"
    "Imitation of Life" is the bitter sweet story of a black maid struggling with her light skin daughter who wanted to pass as white. The story begins in post WWII NYC when Lana Turner (in the role of a struggling actress) hires the maid to work for and live with Turner and her then 7 year old daughter (same age as the maid's little girl). Times are tough at first, but the 4-some gets on fine. Only little Sarah Jane (the maid's daughter) has constant trouble accepting her color.

    The story spans about 15 years and shows various instances where the loving black maid is humiliated by her daughter who in the end disowns her mother. The ending is the ultimate heartbreaker; the film deserves 5 stars for that alone!

    This is the 2nd Hollywood treatment of "The Aunt Jemima Story". The first version (1934) with Claudette Colbert has better acting, but is not quite as sentimental as the Technicolor Lana Turner film. The latter also has a memorable title song by Earl Grant (who usually plays the organ in his recordings, but here he sings).

    I could watch this movie anytime, for no reason at all...it's the best in its class! This film is the ultimate in Hollywood tear-jerkers, and one of my favorite movies ever. Lana Turner was not exactly "Oscar-material", but neither was Marilyn Monroe--still they both captured an audience with their presence like few other actresses ever did. Nothing but pure "Hollywood Candy" here! ...

    5-0 out of 5 stars a true classic
    One of the great Hollywood melodramas, IMITATION OF LIFE is based on the book by Fannie Hurst and is directed with style and emotion by Douglas Sirk.

    A chance meeting throws together Lora Meredith (Lana Turner) and Annie Johnson (Juanita Moore), two struggling widows who both have troubled relationships with their daughters. Lora is a Broadway starlet intent on hitting the big time, which will come at the cost of her daughter Susie (Sandra Dee), while Annie's daughter Sarah Jane (Susan Kohner) is a black girl with a pale complexion, who chooses to pass as white in order to avoid the hatred of a prejudiced world.

    As years of denial and unawareness pass, the two girls slowly revolt from their mothers, and the story moves to its emotional and tearful conclusion.

    Still compelling over 50 years later, IMITATION OF LIFE still has a message for modern audiences, and preserves the tour-de-force performances of Juanita Moore and Susan Kohner. Both were Oscar-nominated for their work here. The performances of Sandra Dee and Lana Turner (and Troy Donahue as Sarah Jane's violent boyfriend) are just as impressive.

    The supporting cast includes John Gavin, Dan O'Herlihy, Robert Alda and Mahalia Jackson. The DVD includes the trailer. (Single-sided, dual-layer disc).

    5-0 out of 5 stars MOORE AND KOHNER - THE HEART OF THIS MOVIE
    In 1959, Susan Kohner and Juanita Moore lost the Best Supporting Actress oscar to Shelley Winters for "Diary of Anne Frank." While Winters certainly was a seasoned and excellent actress, I don't see how one can overlook Susan and Juanita's gutwrenching performances. In spite of the star presence of Lana Turner and John Gavin, this movie's heart lies in the story of Annie and her mulatto daughter, Sarah Jane.
    Director Douglas Sirk and his glamorized movies was the inspiration for the much acclaimed film, "Far from Heaven." One can see why Todd Hayes wanted to venture into this director's turf. Ross Hunter's glitzy production begged for its audience to become embroiled in Lana's problems becoming a big actress. But with the performances of Ms. Moore and Kohner, IMITATION OF LIFE achieves the status of one of our finest tearjerkers. Sadly enough, neither actress had much of a career after this, and what a shame. Their scenes together are so electric and heartwrenching, they deserved more. The final portion of the film wherein we lose Ms. Moore and her subsequent funeral are the stuff of Kleenex heaven.
    Definitely one of the finest remakes of our time. Because of Juanita Moore and Susan Kohner!!!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Lana Turner and Juanita Moore
    The struggles of two mothers with very different problems are detailed in this glossy but overly sentimental film. Lora Meredith and Annie Johnson establish a friendship purely by accident but they forge a bond that brings them together for life. Lora eventually finds stardom on the stage after many setbacks and disappointments but Annie has the impossible task of trying to make her mulatto daughter accept her racial heritage. Sarah Jane's shame at having a black mother is the main theme of the film while Lora's ups and downs on Broadway and eventual career success provide a counterpoint to the troubling themes of self-loathing and racial intolerance. Sarah Jane's relationship with Lora's daughter Susie is by turns sisterly and contentious because of Sarah Jane's jealousy and resentment towards Susie because she is white. Another sub-plot is Lora's relationship with Steve Archer, which also spans many years. Their romance always takes a back seat to Lora's stage career ambitions, which frustrates her handsome suitor immensely. Steve eventually becomes the object of Susie's affections as she grows into womanhood and her obsession with Steve causes problems later on. The film's famous last reel is touching and has the added effect of having Mahalia Jackson sing spirituals for the beloved Annie. Lana Turner is very beautiful and glamorous in this film and was never lovelier, but Juanita Moore's tortured Annie and Susan Kohner's ungrateful, mean-spirited Sarah Jane are the reasons for which this film is remembered.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Imitation of Life ( Germ241F @ SUNY Binghamton
    Douglas Sirk's 1959 remake of John Stahl's 1934 film, Imitation of Life, is a parody of the original. In a comical rendition, Imitation of Life, addresses intersections of race, social and economic class, and gender in the film, as well as existing stereotypes, through the use of Neo-Brechtian gestik acting which means over-the-top, melodramatic and campy acting that is quoting a character and his/her emotions and exaggerates the role of a character in a situation. Sirk deliberately wanted to use gestik acting and avoided method acting (acting out what your emotions would really be, if you were in a certain situation) because he didn't want audiences to think that this film was real and to be taken seriously.
    Two single-parenting mothers, Annie and Lora meet on the beach of Coney Island, in search of Lora's daughter Suzie. When Lora and Suzie find out that Annie and her daughter Sara Jane are homeless, Lora decides to let them live in her apartment as long as Annie agrees to contribute some help around the house, and do the dirty work for Lora. Annie is depicted as a parody for blackness, just because she has typical attributes of any nanny. A loving, nurturing, understanding, and caring mother is the stereotypical mother that society adores which is played out by Annie. On the other hand Lora is a neglecting figure in the eyes of Suzie. Annie is more like the mother for Suzie, but not Sara Jane. Sara Jane refuses to admit that she a daughter to a black woman and passes as a white girl while in school. Sara Jane fires up the racial tension in this film because of her denial and mistreatment towards her mother.
    Lora meets a man named Steve, who almost right away, proposes to her. She denies the proposal in an effort to pursue her dream of becoming a Hollywood actress. Steve tries to make her stay, by telling her that she doesn't have to work, and that he will bring home to money. This shows us how Steve along with the majority of society view women and their roles of life. A women's life should be to stay home, clean, take care of the kids, and put dinner on the table, which is the old fashion way that much of male Americans viewed women to perform in. Opposite roles of gender for the male figure in this film was shown through Steve, who has found a detective out of now where, who has found Sara Jane and her place of refuge from her mother. This situation renders Steve as if he were Superman, the one being able to fix any problem.
    This campy imitation of life is viewed throughout most of the film, except for the scene of Annie's funeral, where Mahalia Jackson sings a gospel song. Eulogy of Annie is brought to her through the singing voice of Mahalia. This scene is supposed to be a serious one among the other witty scenes, because the character of Mahalia is the only realistic one in this film and is not to be criticized. Mahalia does not exemplify the overly dramatic acting. ... Read more


    18. The Motorcycle Diaries
    Director: Walter Salles
    list price: $9.98
    our price: $8.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0006Z2LOW
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 3278
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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    The beauty of the South American landscape and of Gael Garcia Bernal (Y Tu Mama Tambien, Bad Education) gives The Motorcycle Diaries a charisma that is decidedly apolitical. But this portrait of the young Che Guevara (later to become a militant revolutionary) is half buddy-movie, half social commentary--and while that may seem an unholy hybrid, under the guidance of Brazillian director Walter Salles (Central Station) the movie is quietly passionate. Guevara and his friend Alberto Granado (Rodrigo de la Serna, a lusty and engaging actor) set off from Buenos Aires, hoping to circumnavigate the continent on a leaky motorcycle. They end up travelling more by foot, hitchhiking, and raft, but their experience of the land and the people affects them profoundly. No movie could affect an audience the same way, but The Motorcycle Diaries gives a soulful glimpse of an awakening social conscience, and that's worth experiencing. --Bret Fetzer ... Read more

    Reviews (92)

    2-0 out of 5 stars An Eloquent Whitewash
    I saw this really cool movie about Charles Manson when he was a boy, riding a bike, helping people he met along the way, volunteering at a leper colony, charming the ladies, flashing that winning smile, etc. The movie may have glossed over his bitter racism and his intense homophobia a little bit, and it did go out of its way to paint Mr. Manson in a positive light. Had you not known the name, you might have thought he went on to be some kind of heroic figure or great humanitarian...not a mass murderer who enjoyed and savored his victims' pain or a delusional megalomaniac who equated wholesale slaughter with revolution. Gee, this movie deserves an oscar.

    Oh, wait, did I say "Manson?" Sorry, I meant "Guevarra." Not that it matters. Different name, same exact meaning.

    The Motorcycle Diaries is about a man who personally oversaw and took pleasure in dozens of mass executions in Cuba and Latin America (and ordered hundreds more). It's about a man who once personally and without trial executed a hungry child for stealing food. About a man who led bands of armed thugs into peaceful, isolated villages and killed any male who refused to join his "revolutionary army." Che founded Cuba's "labor camp" system-the system that was eventually employed to incarcerate (and often execute) gays, political opponents, religious clerics and AIDS victims. He lobbied Khrushchev and Castro to launch a first-strike nuclear attack on the US from Cuba. The "passion" that drove this man was ultimately not a passion for justice, but just a passion for killing. The fact that he committed all these unspeakable atrocities ostensibly to effect social change makes no difference: after all, so did Charles Manson.

    Don't take my word for any of this. You can judge Che from his own hateful words: "To send men to the firing squad, judicial proof is unnecessary. These procedures are an archaic bourgeois detail. This is a revolution! And a revolutionary must become a cold killing machine motivated by pure hate."

    If that's not enough, how about another Che gem: "Hatred as an element of struggle; unbending hatred for the enemy, which pushes a human being beyond his natural limitations, making him into an effective, violent, selective, and cold-blooded killing machine - this is what our soldiers must become."

    Thousands of men and women have gone on life-affirming road trips as young men and had madcap misadventures, learning about the world and about themselves in the process. So let's face it: the only thing that sets Che's odyssey apart is that Che subsequently went on to become a "cold-blooded killing machine." Others have taken similar journeys and have dedicated themselves to ending world hunger or healing the sick. Why not make a movie about them? But should a man capable of saying AND LIVING BY Che's hateful words be admired, memorialized in cinema and t-shirts, and held up as a role model for those seeking justice? No more than Charles Manson should.

    Save your money and your time and your dignity. Respect the dead.Watch something else.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A telling testimony of how an experience can shape your life
    After I watched this movie, it left me wanting to know more about the rest of the life of the main characters.I actually wanted to read the original book by Che Guevara and the books by Alberto Granado and added those books to my wishlist.

    This movie portrayed Che Guevara in a positive way even though through further discovery, he also had a negative side.The good, bad and the ugly that complicated individuals sometimes own, never mind regular individuals.However, I have had an interest in any kind of media (books or movies) that show the experiences of peoples lives that are different from my own.It really provides and enlightening perspective of what makes people tick.

    Like a lot of typical college students the summer of their graduation in America who travel to Europe, Asia, etc. to seek fun and adventure, this offers a similar journey of 2 friends who journey through Latin America ultimately to work in a leper colony.The journey and experience with the people from different nations and cultures ultimately shapes the lead characters future endeavors, including Che Guevara becoming a revolutionary in Cuba.It gives great insight how a single experience can change the destiny of one's life.

    It also is a great testimony how 2 friends who start out having common goals and aspirations can all of a sudden go their different ways.I could really relate to this experience, as I have also found this to be true in my own life.I give kudos to the writers of this film who wrote a very layered piece which could relate to individuals on many levels and the actors were on point in their portrayals.Robert Redford is the executive producer on this film and made a wonderful choice in taking on this film.A true tribute to his development and experiences with the Sundance Film Institute.

    The most important thing the movie reflects is truth and self-realization.The truth that 2 friends wil be parting ways and what path each one will choose.One comfortable and safe, the other difficult and challenging. It was a truly human film that made me reflect on the choices of my life and what my life would have been had I made different choices.A true coming of age movie.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Smell of gasoline in the air..And is Pleasant !
    I am an Indian who has little to no knowledge of what is cuban revolution or Chi or anyone for that matter. Neither do I know a word of Spanish and havehardly any Latin American friends.

    Time and again couple of my Indian friends recommended to watch this movie..my curiosity increased when an online group (R2I club) which i visit had a mention of the movie as a great movie. Rented the movie and was absolutely thankful for the recommendation

    The movie is fun, very interesting, breadthtaking views, nice theme , excellent subtitles and a perfect blend of everything that made amovie one of my favorites in the recent times. Other than few very subtle ( exploitation by mining company) socialistic touch, which appears very genuine...it is just a great movie...

    First thing after watching the movie...went to google and typed in "Che" Guevara .

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wow hold on buddy
    What che did is no different than any other political leader did. I mean what is up with that Vietnam thing?
    I don't support communism, but the guy was intelligent and sure is one of these people that should be remembered in histoy!!
    Viva la Revolucion!!!....=) j.kindding!

    5-0 out of 5 stars An Important Film
    The Motorcycle Diaries is an important film for everyone to watch.Despite being called socialist propaganda, I believe this film gets could help cure Americans' misunderstanding of Latin America.

    (Disclaimer: the points of view presented in the following paragraph are not necessarily mine, but rather an exploration into the ideology behind Latin American socialist movements.It is only meant to help critics of this film understand why Guevara is respected in Latin America, why most American presidents, with the exception of Jimmy Carter, are regarded as imperialists.)

    The movie, for one, explains the roots of socialist ideology in Latin America.It shows the true reasons why millions of students and peasants marched (and still march) in the streets of Latin American cities demanding social justice.While it is true that Guevara had a role in establishing the current Cuban regime, dismissing his ideological roots as "bloodthirsty" and "communist" only widens the political gap in the Western Hemisphere.For those who wonder why the Latin American youth still wears Che, Allende, SubComandante MArcos, and Lenin T-shirts, it is important to understand the circumstances in which Latin Americans grow up.The region remains dominated by corrupt, wealthy capitalists who steal from the poor. While Americans continue to believe that socialism is evil and authoritarian, and while many note that Guevara justified killing political enemies, it is also important to understand that Latin America has suffered under the influence of some American presidents, who, during the Cold WAr, supported authoritarian upper-class rule.Thirty thousand died, in secret, in Argentina's dirty war with the support of Secretary of State Kissinger.Hundreds of thousands died in wars in Central America, most of which resulted in elite military regimes supported by the United States.Thousands have died at the hands of paramilitaries in Colombia, who are given virtual amnesty by Bush's ally, President Uribe. Fidel Castro is a romantic and an infinitely abusive leader, but, to Latin America, he is nothiing like Che Guevara.Che symbolizes not communism in Cuba, but a vision of justice and Utopia in Latin America which has yet to be achieved.

    It is important for Americans who want to understand Latin America to watch this film.It will help those who have grown up in a rich, fair society to understand the anger behing Latin American socialism. ... Read more


    19. Shane
    Director: George Stevens
    list price: $9.95
    our price: $9.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0792107683
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 1208
    Average Customer Review: 4.57 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com essential video

    Consciously crafted by director George Stevens as a piece of American mythmaking, Shane is on nearly everyone's shortlist of great movie Westerns. A buckskin knight, Shane (Alan Ladd) rides into the middle of a range war between farmers and cattlemen, quickly siding with the "sod-busters." While helping a kindly farmer (Van Heflin), Shane falls platonically in love with the man's wife (Jean Arthur, in the last screen performance of a marvelous career). Though the showdowns are exciting, and the story simple but involving, what most people will remember about this movie is the friendship between the stoical Shane and the young son of the farmers. The kid is played by Brandon De Wilde, who gives one of the most amazing child performances in the movies; his parting scene with Shane is guaranteed to draw tears from even the most stonyhearted moviegoer. And speaking of stony hearts, Jack Palance made a sensational impression as the evil gunslinger sent to clean house--he has fewer lines of dialogue than he has lines in his magnificently craggy face, but he makes them count. The photography, highlighting the landscape near Jackson Hole, Wyoming, won an Oscar. --Robert Horton ... Read more

    Reviews (93)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Farmers vs. Ranchers
    Shane is the title of the movie and the main character of this well-made Western. Alan Ladd plays the stranger who arrives in a Western community where a range war between farmers and ranchers is about to play out. The farmers' leader is Joe Starrett, played by tough, reliable Van Heflin. He wants the farmers to stay, to stand up to rancher Rufe Riker and his hired hands.

    Riker tries to buy Starrett out, but Starrett won't go. Then Riker hires a gunman - Wilson - played by Jack Palance. He's as mean as they come and he verbally goads one of the farmers into trying to "draw" on him. Wilson(Palance) kills the farmer without blinking.

    The farmers are about ready to give up. But when Riker sets fire to a farmer's home as the community gathers to bury its dead, the farmers vow to "play one more hand." Riker sends men to Starrett's ranch to tell him that Riker wants to see him. But Shane stops Starrett by physically knocking him out. He knows that he must go into town to "talk" to Riker.

    Civilization is fast approaching on the Western range. And Shane is going to hasten that change by going into battle against Riker.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Western Classic
    Shane might well be the greatest western ever made and a true American classic. Recently in a New York Times article, Woody Allen of all people considered it the best American film of all time. The movie is about a mysterious stranger who unexpectently comes into a homestead family's life and helps in their battle against a greedy landowner who is threatening them to move off their land. Alan Ladd stars in the title role and he exudes an air of calm control and dark mystery. Shane is an expert gunman and a skilled fighter, but he doesn't want any trouble. He tries hard to avoid a fight in the local saloon, but no matter how hard he tries, trouble finds him. The homestead family is played by Van Heflin, Jean Arthur and the young Brandon De Wilde. Mr. De Wilde is excellent as a wild-eyed youngster who grows to idolize Shane. Mr. Heflin plays the strong, defiant landowner, but also loving husband to his devoted wife, played tenderly by Ms. Arthur, and his son. He stands by his new friend Shane, when the other homesteaders want him to leave when they feel he's stirring up trouble. A young Jack Palance is menacing as an icy hired gun hired to drive the homesteaders off their land. The showdown between him and Shane is a tense and taut showdown. Director George Stevens captures the breathtaking beauty of the American Old West. Shane was nominated for several Academy Awards, but failed to win any. Despite that fact, it remains a brilliant film worth repeated viewings.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Revisionist History as Entertainment
    A lone rider approaches a family ranch. He observes a gang riding up to order the owner off his land. There is an economic conflict between a big land owner and small ranchers who are bringing in Jersey cows and working the land for agriculture. The big land owner wants to eliminate competition from small businesses; his government contract shows his political connections. The film shows the use of barbed wire, the invention that put an end to the open range. The settlers go into town for supplies. A barroom brawl occurs when Shane is attacked; Joe Starrett joins in to help his hired hand. Tavern owner Riker sends to Cheyenne for a hired gun, Jack Wilson, for a final solution to the homesteader problem.

    The settlers gather for a July 4th celebration. They hear of Riker's hired gunfighter. That evening Riker show up to make a final offer to Starrett: join him for a good price, and abandon the other small ranchers. This offer is refused. The next day the gunfighter insults Torrey to force a duel, and kills him. Joe Starrett announces he will go into town next, without waiting for the other settlers. The question is: shall the people be oppressed and swindled by a rich powerful landowner? (Most of the large ranches were owned by corporations from back East.) Some of the small ranchers decide to abandon their claims. Yet they have the right to settle and farm the land. "This country wasn't made for just one man." The burning of one home makes the settlers decide to hang on for a while.

    Riker makes an offer to draw Starret to his place (for an ambush). Calloway turns up to warn Shane of this trick. Starrett's wife argues for giving up and moving out now. (Credible?). Shane tries to stop Starrett, and they fight in the dark (to hide their body doubles?). Shane wins and leaves to keep the appointment, and force a final showdown. Shane successfully resolves the problem of Jack Wilson, then Riker, and moves on to new territory. [This avoids any retribution by Riker's allies.) {This film uses the dime-novel fantasy of a "fast-draw", which did not occur in historical records.]

    This story is loosely based on the Powder River war. In reality, the settler's militia drove off the armed gang hired by the large landowners. The large ranchers tried to get rid of small ranchers by passing a law that gave them sole rights to all cattle in the state! Read the chapter in William Weir's "Written With Lead" for more details. "Unhappy are the people who want a hero."

    2-0 out of 5 stars Two stars. One for each time it put me to sleep.
    Don't get me wrong, folks ,I am A HUGE fan of classic Westerns! This one, it just doesn't make it for me. Don't even get me started about Alan Ladd's "tough but gentle" potrayal of Shane. Ladd is unconvincing to this reviewer not only in the tough guy category, but his dramatic side is very, very "Ward Cleaver." AND THAT KID!!! That blasted kid. Joey, played by Brandon De Wilde. Good gawd, if he wasn't the most annoying little snot that came out of Hollywood. (before the debut of Pauly Shore) "Shane, are you gonna shoot that man? "Shane, are you gonna let me look through your Playboys?" I spent half the film (before I fell asleep) hoping Shane would say, "Come here, Joey, and help me change the wheel on this stagecoach" and have a little "accident." Joey's absence from the second half of this movie MAY have kept me awake. (but I doubt it.)

    5-0 out of 5 stars miscast but still legendary
    SHANE is among the most renowned westerns in motion picture history, inspite of the miscasting of Alan Ladd in the title role. many other more accomplished actors come to mind of whom could have assumed the role, and many of these were offered the role. however it was Alan Ladd who was awarded the role.

    Ladd was a formidable actor and delivered a fine performance inspite of the other more accomplished actors who may have given better performances.

    regardless of Ladd in the role of SHANE, the movie was legendary and considered a true classic to this day. the other actors, which include: Van Heflin, Jean Arthur, Brandon De Wilde, Emile Meyer and Jack Palance all gave stellar performances. however it was George Stevens, a director whose name is synonymous with great filmmaking who was solely responsible for the renowned success of this truly legendary western classic. a true masterpiece. ... Read more


    20. Purple People Eater
    Director: Linda Shayne
    list price: $9.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 6302089654
    Catlog: Video
    Sales Rank: 14066
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (4)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Always a classic
    I loved this movie when I was a kid. Now my daughter loves it. This movie everybody needs to have in their collection.

    5-0 out of 5 stars the Ultimate family musical
    I loved this movie when I was younger and now it's the kind of movie that you can view over and over and never get tired of it.
    I have the song purple people eater on CD, my son and the kids in my day care love the song they sing it on our Karaoke all the time.
    so I've been looking for the movie and will not stop till I find it. This is one family movie they will never forget.

    5-0 out of 5 stars THIS FILM IS WICKED!!!!!!!!!
    I watched this film as a child and haven't been able to find it anywhere! I recommend this film to all kids because it is absolutely brilliant and definately one of the best films around!!!! SO GET IT!!!!!!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Purple People Eater Fans
    The Purple People Eater is one of the best movies of the century. I loved it as a child and our video got ruined I have never been able to find it until now and I am sad that it is out of stock. I would reccomend this movie to any parent for their children. It is a classic in my book and wish it was more popular. ... Read more


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