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$26.98 $14.99 list($29.98)
1. Long Day's Journey into Night
$13.46 list($14.95)
2. Blithe Spirit
$121.37 list($24.99)
3. Blithe Spirit

1. Long Day's Journey into Night
Director: Peter Wood
list price: $29.98
our price: $26.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00009WVME
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 33933
Average Customer Review: 3.86 out of 5 stars
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Description

Penned by award winning writer, Lucy Gannon (Peak Practice, Hope and Glory, Soldier Soldier), the turbulent story follows the collapse of David’s mental health as the pressures of his new job take a terrible toll. ... Read more

Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Performances, Great Play, Great DVD
I am delighted to be able to add this to my DVD collection. This production of the play is easily the finest ever put on film or tape, infinitely superior to that rather tired film with Katherine Hepburn and Ralph Richardson. This was taped in the studio after a famed production of the play was a major success at England's National Theatre.

Olivier's James Tyrone is indelible, the only actor I have ever seen to make the character a real living person rather than a hard-hearted tyrant. Olivier's performance is heart breaking, one of the most beautiful and moving performances I've ever seen. His James Tyrone manages to be achingly human and sad at all times, without ever once sugar-coating the character's less admirable qualities. That the same can be said of Constance Cummings as Mary Tyrone, and Denis Quilley and Ronald Pickup as Jamie and Edmund is a tribute to an overall magnificent cast.

A more than worthy addition to anyone's DVD library, and vital viewing for anyone interested in watching a great performance of a great play.

All in all, this is a great feast of acting for those willing to sit still and watch it with the attention it deserves. It doesn't get better than this.

2-0 out of 5 stars Long Days Journey Review
Long Days Journey Into Night was the classic struggle about man battling with his fate. I thought the movie was alright, but not really my kind of flick. For drama lovers it would probably be a little better. It lacked any real action or entertainment from my point of view, but kept my interest somewhat. The acting was very good, however the plot was very depressing and sad, it's not a very uplifting movie whatsoever.

3-0 out of 5 stars An uninteresting but educational masterpiece
After viewing this movie, I thought that it was exactly like any other movie I've viewed in school, boring. While many critics may argue that this was a great piece of art by O'neill, I found it to be three hours of mediocre drama. This is not to say that this film didn't have its interesting parts though. I thought the actors did a wonderful job depicting the lives of the family members and i felt as though this really added to the quality of the movie. Overall I give this movie 3 stars because It was rather boring but it did have its high spots.

4-0 out of 5 stars O'Neills Masterpiece Reflects Struggle Within Us All
Eugene O'neills compelling play Long Days Journey Into Night reflects the struggle between man and his fate. Though lacking the action packjed climax we find in todays movies. Lo9ng Days journey Into NIght focuses on capturing the complexity of the Characters problems and struggles. This film uses incredible photography and camera angles to express an individuals state of mind. At some points throughout this film it lost its ability to engage an audience , as a live play would, however the parts that did caprture the audience left one questioning ones own fate and the upward struggle we all face. Overall this film was captivating and truely posesses the essence of O'Neill. Very Good, Captivating film.

5-0 out of 5 stars Olivier's LDJN: The wait is finally over
This was the first production of Long Days Journey Into Night that I saw. It changed my life, I was a high school student at the time, and I was blown away by the power of the play. The following year I was able to go to both London and New York and began a now 30 year love affair with the Theatre. For me, Denis Quilley and Ronald Pickup have been the Jaime and Edmund that everyone else must measure up to. This production was legendary, and deservedly so. A must for any O'Neill student. ... Read more


2. Blithe Spirit
Director: David Lean
list price: $14.95
our price: $13.46
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0002CR018
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 9798
Average Customer Review: 3.19 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (16)

3-0 out of 5 stars Harmless, But Uninspired
"Blithe Spirit" has Rex Harrison in his acerbic bachelor mode unable to get rid of either of his dead wives. Now if that's not a knock-out premise, I don't know what is, yet this film fell flat for me. This came out the same year as David Lean's other 1946 release, "Brief Encounter," but it doesn't have any of that film's elegance and style. "Blithe Spirit" feels pretty anonymous from a filmmaking standpoint.

However, this movie's strength is its writing. The screenplay is terrific, and all of the lines are delivered with such throw away dryness that I have the feeling I could watch this again and find everything funnier than I did the first time.

No quibbles with the performances, though no one is asked to stretch him/herself much. My favorite performance probably came from Kay Hammond, playing Harrison's first dead wife. Others rave about Margaret Rutherford, but I found her a bit too mannered and spastic.

I love that movies like this won Oscars for special effects. They're so quaint and fake, but you know the artists had to be so inventive to pull stuff like this off in the pre-computer era.

My most negative comments concern the quality of the DVD itself. I wholeheartedly agree with previous commenters on the horrible color and sound quality on display here. I wish the film had been in black and white, because the copy I saw was washed out and ugly. And my wife and I missed about the first 20 minutes of dialogue because of bad sound.

If you want to own a copy of "Blithe Spirit," I wouldn't buy this one. But it's fine for renting.

Grade: B-

4-0 out of 5 stars VERY WITTY AND SOPHISTICATED
This film is great fun to watch. Rex Harrison and Constance Cummings are the married couple and Kay Hammond is the ghost of Harrison's ex who wreaks havoc in their home. Margaret Rutherford is much younger than we usually see her but blissfully her fey self as Madame Arcati. Rutherford is very funny and a real scene stealer. The early colour is quite good (on my DVD) and the print was very clear. Harrison was actually more versatile than is generally remembered (remember "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir"?).

5-0 out of 5 stars Bravo for the London reviewer of January 16, 2004!
The London reviewer and I are of one accord on the perfection of this exercise in WIT as defined by Pope: "True wit is nature to advantage dressed / What oft was thought but ne'er so well expressed." I did not live between the two World Wars and so did not have the privilege of interfacing with the great characters in everyday life then who occupied the charming English country towns of that era. But curiously, I instantly felt I was witnessing a true slice of life when I first viewed this GEM from Noel Coward. Of course, Frank Capra (in "You Can't Take It With You") and C.S. Lewis had put us on notice that folks on both sides of the Pond in the '30s and '40s were dabbling in the dangerous pastime of spiritism and would get themselves into all sorts of mischief when they did. I consider it a tribute to the masterful direction of "Blithe Spirit" that I, a Connecticut baby-boomer born in 1950 and of Irish descent, instantly knew I was viewing real English society in this film. There is a certain delicious human authenticity to this comedy of errors ... I find it just plain irresistible. I love seeing the human spirit portrayed enjoyably in film or in literature (often through gentle social satire), and for reasons I'll never quite understand, I so love this silly, enchanting story and come back to it again and again. Dear reviewer, you are joined by cultural brethren wherever the good breeze of human reflection blows across the arts.

Permit me to make two recommendations for you. One is the film, "The Late George Apley" (a worthy, if truncated, distillation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel) -- hard but not impossible to find, and again a gentle look at the foibles of mankind in a gentler time that I prize, even though I was born after it. Another is an out-of-print (but relatively easy-to-obtain) collection of short stories about characters in the British Isles in the late 19th century: "Grandmother and the Priests," by Taylor Caldwell, who takes us inside the lives of marvelous characters we would like to have met, in one of the most breathtaking exhibitions of literature offered in 20th century literature. Thank you for standing up for the right stuff in your praise of "Blithe Spirit."

5-0 out of 5 stars Perfect
This is a review of the script, acting and direction; not of the DVD. This is vintage, brittle Coward. It will obviously not appeal to young, brash kids, who will not be able to believe that English people between the two World Wars actually spoke, thought and behaved like this. However, they did. Or some of them did. In fact, I can remember them doing it: they were just exactly like the older members of my own family. The writing is brilliant, precise and accurate. Strange as it may seem, there actually were people like Madame Arcati: eccentric English spinsters repeating the mannerisms and slang of their schooldays. The plotting is extremely clever: you continually wonder how Coward is going to keep the plates spinning in the air, and are constantly surprised at his deftness and dexterity. The lines are poised and sharp, if slightly one-note. The direction is faultless, but then this kind of play almost directs itself. I feel sorry for those who cannot appreciate the theatrical skills displayed in this performance, or the verbal and mental adroitness being displayed. Modern film technology and techniques are no substitutes.

1-0 out of 5 stars Not worth your time
This is horribly performed. My high school performed the play better. However, it's not all their fault. After all, Noel Coward is a horrible writer! He constantly contradicts himself. It's not worth watching ... Read more


3. Blithe Spirit
Director: David Lean
list price: $24.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 6305186340
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 31087
Average Customer Review: 3.19 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Amazon.com essential video

Noel Coward's favorite play was certainly a departure for David Lean,best known for adapting Dickens in the '40s. While it's the director's only comedy, the result is a delightful gem. Rex Harrison is an acerbic author haunted by the ghost of first wife Elvira (Kay Hammond), who tries to seduce him all over again. This throws his second wife (Constance Cummings) into a panic, second-guessing her lack of passion. It's a celestial sex romp that hasn't lost its bite. Margaret Rutherford, as always, steals the show as the sardonic medium. --Bill Desowitz ... Read more

Reviews (16)

3-0 out of 5 stars Harmless, But Uninspired
"Blithe Spirit" has Rex Harrison in his acerbic bachelor mode unable to get rid of either of his dead wives. Now if that's not a knock-out premise, I don't know what is, yet this film fell flat for me. This came out the same year as David Lean's other 1946 release, "Brief Encounter," but it doesn't have any of that film's elegance and style. "Blithe Spirit" feels pretty anonymous from a filmmaking standpoint.

However, this movie's strength is its writing. The screenplay is terrific, and all of the lines are delivered with such throw away dryness that I have the feeling I could watch this again and find everything funnier than I did the first time.

No quibbles with the performances, though no one is asked to stretch him/herself much. My favorite performance probably came from Kay Hammond, playing Harrison's first dead wife. Others rave about Margaret Rutherford, but I found her a bit too mannered and spastic.

I love that movies like this won Oscars for special effects. They're so quaint and fake, but you know the artists had to be so inventive to pull stuff like this off in the pre-computer era.

My most negative comments concern the quality of the DVD itself. I wholeheartedly agree with previous commenters on the horrible color and sound quality on display here. I wish the film had been in black and white, because the copy I saw was washed out and ugly. And my wife and I missed about the first 20 minutes of dialogue because of bad sound.

If you want to own a copy of "Blithe Spirit," I wouldn't buy this one. But it's fine for renting.

Grade: B-

4-0 out of 5 stars VERY WITTY AND SOPHISTICATED
This film is great fun to watch. Rex Harrison and Constance Cummings are the married couple and Kay Hammond is the ghost of Harrison's ex who wreaks havoc in their home. Margaret Rutherford is much younger than we usually see her but blissfully her fey self as Madame Arcati. Rutherford is very funny and a real scene stealer. The early colour is quite good (on my DVD) and the print was very clear. Harrison was actually more versatile than is generally remembered (remember "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir"?).

5-0 out of 5 stars Bravo for the London reviewer of January 16, 2004!
The London reviewer and I are of one accord on the perfection of this exercise in WIT as defined by Pope: "True wit is nature to advantage dressed / What oft was thought but ne'er so well expressed." I did not live between the two World Wars and so did not have the privilege of interfacing with the great characters in everyday life then who occupied the charming English country towns of that era. But curiously, I instantly felt I was witnessing a true slice of life when I first viewed this GEM from Noel Coward. Of course, Frank Capra (in "You Can't Take It With You") and C.S. Lewis had put us on notice that folks on both sides of the Pond in the '30s and '40s were dabbling in the dangerous pastime of spiritism and would get themselves into all sorts of mischief when they did. I consider it a tribute to the masterful direction of "Blithe Spirit" that I, a Connecticut baby-boomer born in 1950 and of Irish descent, instantly knew I was viewing real English society in this film. There is a certain delicious human authenticity to this comedy of errors ... I find it just plain irresistible. I love seeing the human spirit portrayed enjoyably in film or in literature (often through gentle social satire), and for reasons I'll never quite understand, I so love this silly, enchanting story and come back to it again and again. Dear reviewer, you are joined by cultural brethren wherever the good breeze of human reflection blows across the arts.

Permit me to make two recommendations for you. One is the film, "The Late George Apley" (a worthy, if truncated, distillation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel) -- hard but not impossible to find, and again a gentle look at the foibles of mankind in a gentler time that I prize, even though I was born after it. Another is an out-of-print (but relatively easy-to-obtain) collection of short stories about characters in the British Isles in the late 19th century: "Grandmother and the Priests," by Taylor Caldwell, who takes us inside the lives of marvelous characters we would like to have met, in one of the most breathtaking exhibitions of literature offered in 20th century literature. Thank you for standing up for the right stuff in your praise of "Blithe Spirit."

5-0 out of 5 stars Perfect
This is a review of the script, acting and direction; not of the DVD. This is vintage, brittle Coward. It will obviously not appeal to young, brash kids, who will not be able to believe that English people between the two World Wars actually spoke, thought and behaved like this. However, they did. Or some of them did. In fact, I can remember them doing it: they were just exactly like the older members of my own family. The writing is brilliant, precise and accurate. Strange as it may seem, there actually were people like Madame Arcati: eccentric English spinsters repeating the mannerisms and slang of their schooldays. The plotting is extremely clever: you continually wonder how Coward is going to keep the plates spinning in the air, and are constantly surprised at his deftness and dexterity. The lines are poised and sharp, if slightly one-note. The direction is faultless, but then this kind of play almost directs itself. I feel sorry for those who cannot appreciate the theatrical skills displayed in this performance, or the verbal and mental adroitness being displayed. Modern film technology and techniques are no substitutes.

1-0 out of 5 stars Not worth your time
This is horribly performed. My high school performed the play better. However, it's not all their fault. After all, Noel Coward is a horrible writer! He constantly contradicts himself. It's not worth watching ... Read more


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