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1. Star Wars Trilogy (Widescreen Edition)
Director: George Lucas, Irvin Kershner, Richard Marquand
list price: $69.98
our price: $41.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00003CXCT
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 3
Average Customer Review: 3.84 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential video

Was George Lucas's Star Wars Trilogy, the most anticipated DVD release ever, worth the wait? You bet. It's a must-have for any home theater, looking great, sounding great, and supplemented by generous bonus features.

The Movies
The Star Wars Trilogy had the rare distinction of becoming a cultural phenomenon, a defining event for its generation. On its surface, George Lucas's story is a rollicking and humorous space fantasy that owes debts to more influences than one can count on two hands, but filmgoers became entranced by its basic struggle of good vs. evil "a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away," its dazzling special effects, and a mythology of Jedi knights, the Force, and droids. Over the course of three films--A New Hope (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), and Return of the Jedi (1983)--Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher), and the roguish Han Solo (Harrison Ford) join the Rebel alliance in a galactic war against the Empire, the menacing Darth Vader (David Prowse, voiced by James Earl Jones), and eventually the all-powerful Emperor (Ian McDiarmid). Empire is generally considered the best of the films and Jedi the most uneven, but all three are vastly superior to the more technologically impressive prequels that followed, Episode I, The Phantom Menace (1999) and Episode II, Attack of the Clones (2002).

How Are the Picture and Sound?

Thanks to a new digital transfer, you've never seen C-3PO glow so golden, and Darth Vader's helmet is as black as the Dark Side.

In a word, spectacular. Thanks to a new digital transfer, you've never seen C-3PO glow so golden, and Darth Vader's helmet is as black as the Dark Side. And at the climactic scene of A New Hope, see if the Dolby 5.1 EX sound doesn't knock you back in your chair. Other audio options are Dolby 2.0 Surround in English, Spanish, and French. (Sorry, DTS fans, but previous Star Wars DVDs didn't have DTS either.) There have been a few quibbles with the audio on A New Hope, however.A few seconds of Peter Cushing's dialogue ("Then name the system!") are distorted, and the music (but not the sound effects) is reversed in the rear channels.For example, in the final scene, the brass is in the front right channel but the back left channel (from the viewer's perspective), and the strings are in the left front and back right.The result feels like the instruments are crossing through the viewer.

What's Been Changed?
The rumors are true: Lucas made more changes to the films for their DVD debut. Hayden Christensen (Anakin Skywalker) has been added to a scene in Jedi, Ian McDiarmid (the Emperor) replaces Clive Revill with slightly revised lines in Empire, Temuera Morrison has rerecorded Boba Fett's minimal dialogue, and some other small details have been altered. Yes, these changes mean that the Star Wars films are no longer the ones you saw 20 years ago, but these brief changes hardly affect the films, and they do make sense in the overall continuity of the two trilogies. It's not like a digitized Ewan McGregor has replaced Alec Guiness's scenes, and the infamous changes made for the 1997 special-edition versions were much more intrusive (of course, those are in the DVD versions as well).

How Are the Bonus Features?
Toplining is Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy, a 150-minute documentary incorporating not only the usual making-of nuts and bolts but also the political workings of the movie studios and the difficulties Lucas had getting his vision to the screen (for example, after resigning from the Directors' Guild, he lost his first choice for director of Jedi: Steven Spielberg). It's a little adulatory, but it has plenty to interest any fan. The three substantial featurettes are "The Characters of Star Wars" (19 min.), which discusses the development of the characters we all know and love, "The Birth of the Lightsaber" (15 min.), about the creation and evolution of a Jedi's ultimate weapon, and "The Force Is with Them: The Legacy of Star Wars" (15 min.), in which filmmakers such as Peter Jackson, Ridley Scott, and James Cameron talk about how they and the industry were affected by the films and Lucas's technological developments in visual effects, sound, and computer animation.

The bonus features are excellent and along the same lines as those created for The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones. Each film has a commentary track, recorded by Lucas, Ben Burtt (sound design), Dennis Muren (visual effects), and Carrie Fisher, with Irvin Kershner joining in on the film he directed, The Empire Strikes Back. Recorded separately and skillfully edited together (with supertitles to identify who is speaking), the tracks lack the energy of group commentaries, but they're enjoyable and informative, with a nice mix of overall vision (Lucas), technical details (Burtt, Muren, Kershner), and actor's perspective (Fisher). Interestingly, they discuss some of the 1997 changes (Mos Eisley creatures, the new Jabba the Hutt scene) but not those made for the DVDs.

There's also a sampler of the Xbox game Star Wars: Battlefront, which lets the player reenact classic film scenarios (blast Ewoks in the battle of Endor!); trailers and TV spots from the films' many releases; and a nine-minute preview of the last film in the series, Episode III, Revenge of the Sith (here identified by an earlier working title, The Return of Darth Vader). Small extra touches include anamorphic widescreen motion menus with dialogue, original poster artwork on the discs, and a whopping 50 chapter stops for each film.

"The Force Is Strong with This One"
The Star Wars Trilogy is an outstanding DVD set that lives up to the anticipation. There will always be resentment that the original versions of the films are not available as well, but George Lucas maintains that these are the versions he always wanted to make. If fans are able to put this debate aside, they can enjoy the adventures of Luke, Leia, and Han for years to come. --David Horiuchi ... Read more

Reviews (777)

4-0 out of 5 stars I love the Star Wars Trilogy S.E., warts and all...
I'm somewhat ambivalent about the Special Edition versions of the Star Wars trilogy. On one hand, I rather like the idea that Lucas decided to re-tool the legendary saga more towards his original vision of how he wanted them to look, using modern movie magic technology that had just been a far-off dream when he originally produced these films . On the other hand, I also feel that one should just accept a movie's shortcomings, despite the stature of legend they have attained, and just get on with life. But, I must admit that a lot of the enhancements and expansions worked fairly well, and looked convincing in most cases. Unfortunately, not ALL of the new moments passed muster in my eyes...

I was finally glad that some of the Biggs Darklighter footage was restored to Star Wars (aka prior to the Death Star run). For many years I've heard about these cut scenes- Biggs and Luke talking about the future on Uncle Owen's moisture farm, and the hangar reunion- and had high hopes of finally seeing them. Unfortunately, only the hangar reunion was put back in. The moisture farm intro may well be forever lost...

Another weird addition was Greedo firing first before Han plugged him from under the table in the Cantina. Talk about revisionist history! And the new Jabba scene didn't look that great to me. The CGI Jabba looks a bit too smooth. He was a good sight more wrinkled and warty in both Episode I (Before Star Wars) and Return of the Jedi. Also, you do NOT step on the tail of the most influential crime lord on the planet! I mean, I know they had to tweak the scene to make it work, but still! That should've called for Han's execution right there! Hey, is that Boba Fett hangin' out in the hangar with Jabba? Cool, now he's in all three films!

Then there's that concentric ring of energy that flies outward after the explosions of both Alderaan and the Death Star. Aside from being an unnecessary embellishment, I found this little addition to lack originality as well. This same effect was used in the opening of 'Star Trek VI'. Whoops... I just mentioned 'Star Trek' in a 'Star Wars' review... so much for renewing my fan club membership! Heh...

'Empire' has the fewest changes of the three. The only part I have a problem with are the scenes of Vader boarding his shuttle on Cloud City following his battle with Luke, then exiting his shuttle onto his flagship. Like the explosion rings, I found this to be an unnecessary embellishment; I already got the drift about how he got to his ship from Cloud City, all right? There's also a slight change of dialogue in one scene, following R2D2 getting spat out by the swamp monster in Dagobah. See if you can tell the difference!

I don't have too many complaints about the "improvements" done to Return Of The Jedi, aside from yet another energy ring expanding from the explosion of the second Death Star. The new Jabba's Palace band was pretty neat, but I still prefer the original three-piece band from the original version. I guess I'm just a sentimental kinda guy. There were a few scenes cut from the original release I was hoping to see (Vader force-strangling an Imperial Guard who blocks his attempts to speak with the Emperor, and an Imperial officer being punished by another Imperial guard for insubordination)... no such luck. The expanded Ewok celebration at the end was pretty neat to watch, and included an all-new John Williams composition that has become my second-favorite 'Star Wars' tune (right behind 'The Imperial March- Darth Vader's Theme', from The Empire Strikes Back of course).

I'm not an absolutist about the widescreen format, but in the case of the Star Wars trilogy, it's an absolute necessity. There's just too much happening on both sides of the screen, and you're likely to miss something important. In this case wider IS better.

I just wish they'd finally release these movies on DVD. Like many of the other Amazon reviewers, I too am getting a bit fed up of the constant VHS re-releases. Let's get with the times here!

'Late!

5-0 out of 5 stars Best DVD's Ever
When the Star Wars trilogy arrives on DVD on September 21, the digitally remastered and restored films will be accompanied by over 10 hours of bonus material that goes inside the making of these classic movies.

Each film resides on its own disc, with sharp, pristene imagery restored and remastered by Lowry Digital Images, and the rich sound experience of the saga presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround EX. The films also include new commentary tracks, featuring insights from George Lucas, director Irvin Kershner, actress Carrie Fisher, sound designer Ben Burtt, and Industrial Light & Magic's Dennis Muren.

The fourth disc is packed with bonus material, the most notable being Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy. This two-and-a-half hour documentary traces the evolution of the saga, from a low-budget labor-of-love space saga to the movie phenomenon that defied the odds and reinvented the rules.

This comprehensive documentary features all new interviews with George Lucas and more than 40 members of the cast and crew from the original trilogy, as well as a host of filmmakers and media personalities. Empire of Dreams includes some never-before-seen behind-the-scenes footage from the making of the three films.

Other material on the fourth disc includes:

Episode III Behind the Scenes Preview: The Return of Darth Vader: Finally, Star Wars: Episode III will reveal just how Anakin Skywalker became Darth Vader, the most iconic villain in film history. In this exclusive preview, George Lucas discusses Anakin's descent, with a first look at the new Vader costume forged for Episode III. Also, experience how Hayden Christensen and Ewan McGregor have prepared for the epic lightsaber battle that has been anticipated for more than two decades: the climactic showdown between Anakin and Obi-Wan Kenobi.

The Birth of the Lightsaber: Its unforgettable hum and scintillating glow are instantly recognizable around the world. Now, viewers will discover the origins of this elegant weapon from a more civilized age in this documentary devoted to the lightsaber.

The Characters of Star Wars: An in-depth look at how favorite characters came to be, featuring rare concept art, behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with George Lucas and the cast and crew who shaped the screen's favorite heroes.

The Force Is With Them: The Legacy of Star Wars: Star Wars opened up a galaxy of possibilities to a generation of filmmakers and creative talents. Hear from some of the most notable filmmakers of our time about how influential the Star Wars movies have been to their lives.

Star Wars Battlefront Trailer and Playable Demo: The fourth disc will offer a trailer featuring an exciting look at the upcoming Star Wars Battlefront video game from LucasArts, along with a special demo for Xbox users that lets players fight the Battle of Endor as a Rebel or Imperial soldier and drive AT-STs, ride speeder bikes and use different weapons to lead their side to victory. The full version of Star Wars Battlefront will also be released Sept. 21 for the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and PC.

Star Wars: Episode III Making the Game Preview: Video-game players will be able to experience the stunning Jedi action of Episode III themselves in the new Star Wars: Episode III game, due out in Spring 2005 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox. This special feature shows how game developers at LucasArts worked behind-the-scenes and on the set to create the most authentic Jedi experience ever.

Original Trailers and TV Spots: The original theatrical teaser, launch and re-release trailers for each film, plus TV spots, are featured on the DVD.

Never-Before-Seen Production Gallery: Delve into an unseen corners of the Lucasfilm Archives with exclusive photos from the making of the trilogy, with hundreds of rare behind-the-scene images.

Posters and Print Campaigns: The original releases of the Star Wars films came at a time when international campaigns produced a wealth of intriguing, alternative poster art. Explore a collection of theatrical posters from around the world.

Exclusive DVD-ROM Content: The Star Wars Trilogy DVDs are keys that unlock exclusive content available only through a special DVD-ROM website.

5-0 out of 5 stars M-I-G-H-T-Y F-I-N-E
the star wars trilogy was byfar the best trilogy I have ever seen!!!!!!!!!!!!!! all of the star wars movies were MIGH-TY FINE, and to the guy that said star wars was a LOTR rippoff, I can't see where you are going with your story, its nothing like LOTR, and I for one are one of those people you were talking about and as long as the star wars movies come out i'll help make Lucas richer!!

5-0 out of 5 stars A Classic!
I just recently purchased a DVD player and knew that the Star Wars Trilogy would have to be in my collection ASAP. Of course I've these three movies many, many times, but for some reason I never tire of seeing them again. The first one brings back many childhood memories (my brother had a Star Wars themed bedroom!) and it's comforting to put it on just to have as background noise when my apartment gets too quiet. I guess that is the true meaning of a classic movie - you love it so much that it becomes a part of yourself.

The added interviews and such on this DVD were pretty insightful to me and the bonus disc of "never before seen" footage from making the three movies had me giddy with delight!

I can't imagine anyone not wanting to have this set in their collection!

2-0 out of 5 stars Lord of The RIngs Ripoff!!!
The Star Wars legacy was directly stolen from The Lord of The Rings novels, which were publised in the 1950s. It's shameless, I tell you, shameless!

First there's Luke Skywalker, who has to leave behind his friends to face the evil all alone. But he gets to take along a little droid named R2-D2. This is obviously based on Frodo Baggins and Samwise Gamgee in Lord of the Rings. Then there are the wise Jedi Masters, Yoda and Obi Wan Kanobe. These two characters were obviously based on Tolkien's Gandalf.

Han Solo is a carbon copy of Aragorn. Princess Liea, the warrior hottie, is a ripoff of Eowyn in the Lord of the Rings. Chewbacca is just a ripoff of Gimli. And what about Boba Fett, the mysterious loner who is loyal to no one, who is only out for himself? This is just a ripoff of Gollum. The Death Star is really Mount Doom. Darth Vader is Saruman, and The Empoeror is Saruman.

And then there's Lando Calrisian, who is stolen from J.R.R. Tolkein's character King Theoden. You know, the cowardly ruler who bow's down to the bad guy, then finds his courage to fight! The storm toopers are just Orcs. And the most shameless ripoff of all is the Imperial Walkers in Empire Strikes Back! They are just like the Mumakil monsters in Lord of the Rings.

I can't believe how George Lucas become so filthy rich through thievery!! ... Read more


2. Star Wars - Episode II, Attack of the Clones (Widescreen Edition)
Director: George Lucas
list price: $29.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006HBUJ
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 1277
Average Customer Review: 3.38 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1926)

4-0 out of 5 stars The force is strong with this one.
Star[]Wars! The series has come back into full swing with 'Attack of the Clones.' Everything that 'Phantom Menace' tried to be and more, we return to the rollicking space adventure that made the first three classics. Don't pay attention to the negitive reviews, aside from a little cheese covered romance the goods are delivered in great fashion. 'Attack..' is packed with extremely well lensed action set pieces that remind the viewer of the summer of 1980. The acting is decent and works for the material provided...I mean, this is Star Wars not Shakespere and lines are delivered with intended monotonality; lightsabers speak louder than words and emotion a Jedi does not crave. I found this film to be better than 'Return of the Jedi' due to its return to the swashbuckling action/adverture of the first two movies sans cute little talking kid friendly creatures that help generate mechandise sales for the toddler marketing target group. The special effects are outstanding of course, and the sound effects were really cool. The story was decent enough to get you to care what happens to the heroes and dislike the villians (finally, villians. That seemed to be missing from episode one save Darth Maul who was way underused). All around an excellent chapter in the saga and a great movie in itself. This film makes you look forward to the next installment and the man himself-Darth Vader. Thanks, George for reigniting the magic that was, and is, Star Wars.

5-0 out of 5 stars the best of the star wars movies
in this one,yoda fights.this is truly awesome.anakan is growing up.he goes to get his mom from slavery but shes been killed by these nasty little monsters.so he goes genocidal on them all.ben is tring to teach anakan but hes learning way faster than normal and is quite the showoff.the kids will like it.it is the last full length movie of the set.there is an animated short film after this part called clone wars.the last one is due out next summer.just anybody bwill like it.the chick is a young teen ans ends up being anakans girlfriend.i dont know what you heard but this is an all time great.the special effects are cool.this movie is a classic!

2-0 out of 5 stars Big Trouble In Little Greece: Attack Of The Kung Fu Robots
If I were a movie director and for some reason I decided to undertake the project of making the most grotesque parody and mockery ever made of the original Star Wars trilogy, I would do the following:

First, I would open the movie where the main character of the movie -The Jedi- freefalls some 10,000 stories in a sprawling metropolis, all the while narrowly missing multitudes of careening hovercrafts which literally filled the sky, only to finally land safely inside one of them just in the nick of time, nanoseconds before he was about to slam into the ground.

Secondly, I would include the most bland, personality-less, emotionally-uninspiring actors and actresses I could find. Also, I would incorporate pseudo-Greek cultural and archeological elements throughout the movie (which had no relevancy to the sci-fi theme of the movie) so as to confuse the viewer as to what planet...or planets the movie was taking place in...or what universe and epoch(s) for that matter. I'd include several pseudo-romantic scenes where there wasn't an iota of emotion or chemistry between the two love birds and whose forced, stimulated 'romantic scenes' seemed to serve no purpose, either.

I would then attempt to completely destroy...annhilate the original Star Wars's sacred notion of the force -as being stimulated and channeled by spirituality and mind over matter- and any drama associated with it as well. MY notion would be that the measure of one's force can be determined by analyzing mitochondrial DNA samples to tally the number of antibodies present in the protoplasm.

Next, I would blow away the concept of the original Star Wars's wimpy 2-jedi battle scenes with an epic magnitude-12 mega battle scene which consisted of 10,000 jedis and 100,000 jedi foes engaged in flipping-through the-air somersault kung fu moves that render the likes of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and all '70s special-effects-laden Chinese kung fu flics obsolete. You thought that Luke Skywalker jumping 10 feet out of a carbon freeze container was cool? Could Luke Skywalker stay airborne for 10 seconds all the while throwing barrages of backroundhouse kicks and punches? Screw that punchless Luke Skywalker single-blade lightsaber. Behold, I introduce the double-edged light saber which all jedis are equipped with. FULLY FUNCTIONAL AND OPERATIONAL. Only an elite and intelligent class of human being can be a jedi? Not anymore. Any living, crawling, oozing intelligence-devoid parasite, wingless bat or orc -of any gender-can be a jedi.

Finally, I would end the movie with Kung Fu/Force-Master Yoda defeating the Master Evil Jedi with triple and quintuple cartwheel backroundhouse kicks and punches, while airborne, and lightning-fast Tae Kwan Do slaps and curled finger combinations that would put Jackie Chan to shame. The very last scene of the movie would end with the Evil Jedi Master becoming so angry, because of his defeat, that his head grew to the size of a large balloon, then exploded with the force of 20 grenades. Maybe I'd include that scene only in the UNCUT version.

The result: The sci-fi sequel to "Big Trouble in Little China" -Big Trouble in Little Greece: Attack Of The Kung Fu Robots...or as some people may prefer to call it -Star Wars II: Attack Of The Clones.

2-0 out of 5 stars My Take on Mr. Lucas
OK, here's my rant. I'll keep it brief (unlike some other reviewers)

Best Parts:
1. Phantom Menace - Pod Race, Darth Maul
2. Attack of the Clones - Yoda's lightsaber flight

That's it. Everything else in these films is an utter joke. I could go on for many paragraphs, but I'll spare you. You gotta realize that there was a reason George didn't direct Empire or Jedi. He's an awful director. He has no ear for dialogue. The newer digital film process looks really awful. Only good ol' George could manage to waste the talents of Christopher Lee, Sam Jackson, Ewan McGregor, and Natalie Portman. And I think Hayden Christensen is the only other actor who possesses Keanu Reeves' atrocious wooden technique. His Anakin doesn't possess darkness, just stupidity. I hope Lucas gets a tumor in that fat double chin of his. If you don't like it, sue me. He's destroyed the meaning of my childhood favorites, so the hell with him. Do you really think the next film is going to make up for it? Only if it's about four hours long and is directed by someone else.

4-0 out of 5 stars Star Wars is Star Wars-No matter what anyone thinks
I am writing on behalf of all the Star Wars movies. Sure the prequals aren't life changing but they still make the cut worthy of the title Star Wars.Back in the 70s/early 80s America needed a major facelift. We had nothin to look foward to anymore and just went by living. The movies out back then were dark and dreary. our common mythology had faded into the closet. Then came Star Wars. It was just supposed to be another space family film that would eventually be forgotten about. We were decieved. What George Lucas put on this Earth was meant to be. He dragged us out of the gutter and gave us something to talk about. People had a place to escape to and run away from there troubles. It wasn't like your average cowboy movie where you know the outcome and the setting. It was a strange galaxy with weird looking creatures and strange spaceships. It was all so real and lifelike. It was the total opposite of Star Trek. It was cool. People wanted more. They got two more. Each delivering there own set of memories. The lines became legendary. The sound of a light saber instantly recognizable. Movies nowadays are always borrwing lines and plots of other movies. Star Wars only borrowed one thing. Creativity. The Star Wars story was pulled out of mid-air. It wasn't like George Lucas said he wanted to make a space movie kind of like an old western. He created the idea of A Space Saga Trilogy. He's the one who threw us into this exciting new world called Star Wars. Fans wanted more. They got comics and books. then Star Wars movies were no more. They were still in the movies. Oter movies had borrowed lines and plots for their own. Thats why Star Wars is pop culture ICON. That is what the prequals lack. When someone comes up yo you with a stick in one hand and is waving it around they don't say "Watch out Count Dooku". They say watch out Darth Vader. The prequals are good movies but they aren't life changing like the Classics. If the prequals came first people wouldn't be walking around saying Look A destroyer droid. They don't have the trademark line like they do in the Classics. They didn't create new famous lines, they just took them from the old ones. As a movie I would give Phantom Menace and AOTC a 4 Star award. As a Star Wars film I would give it 2. The negative two is for lack of creativity. The OT is so popular because of what it was nd what it was created as. George did'nt give us that sense of story and herics like he did with the OT. George didn't create the OT because he wanted to tell a story for himself. He made it for us. For Episode one we weren't thrown into this new world with weird craetures and memorable charecters. In a sense of story The prequals fit nicely with the OT. But for a regular movie It gives us nothing to remember and say over and over again and to instantly recognize as Star Wars. I know it is hard to repeat what happened in the 70s/80s but there was nothing George Lucas could do about it. The Prequals are out in a world where evereything has already happened and didn't ignite the flame as the OT did. The Phantom Menace just continued in the name of Star Wars. The OT are just such good movies in themselves and it just doesn't matter which one you see first. They are all memorable. Don't get me wrong, the prequals are good movies and definantly worthy in the name of Star Wars but they are just thrown in with all the other movies which were created around one movie-Star Wars. Other movies wouldn't be the same without there Star Wars moment. That is why when in the movie Just Married Sarah(Brittany Murphy) asks Tom(Ashton Kutcher) if he ever dreamed of anything more glorious in his childhood than his wedding night, he flashes back to when he was playing lightsabers on the playground with other kids to the famous tune that Changed The World. Da da da DAAAA daa-you know the rest!
"Remember, the Force will be with you, Always" ... Read more


3. Star Wars - Episode I, The Phantom Menace (Widescreen Edition)
Director: George Lucas
list price: $29.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00003CX5P
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 1439
Average Customer Review: 3.48 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Description

Feature-Length Audio Commentary
The creators of Episode I give you insight into the film like no one else can. Hear from: writer/director George Lucas, Producer Rick McCallum, sound designer and film co-editor Ben Burtt, ILM animation director Rob Coleman and ILM visual effects supervisors John Knoll, Dennis Muren and Scott Squires.

"The Beginning"
Making Episode I Documentary Film
Culled from over 600 hours of behind-the-scenes footage, this all-new hour-long documentary film takes you inside Lucasfilm and Industrial Light & Magic during the making of The Phantom Menace. Sit in on the film's production process including: pre-production, casting, principal photography, editing, rough-cut reviews, visual effects meetings and other events that few people have had access to before.

Exclusive Deleted Scenes and Documentary
All-new documentary featuring George Lucas, Rick McCallum and guests discussing the painstaking process every director must go through in determining what scenes make the final cut.View seven exclusive deleted sequences that were created specifically for this DVD and learn why they were eliminated from the final version of the film.

Multi-Angle Animatics
Discover the amazing techniques used to create two memorable sequences (Submarine and Podrace Lap 1) from storyboards to animatics to final composites.

Featurettes
Five mini-documentaries give you an insider's look at The Phantom Menace's Storyline, Design, Costumes, Visual Effects and Fight sequences through behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with the cast and filmmakers.

Web Documentaries
Originally released on starwars.com during the production of Episode I, this award-winning twelve-part web documentary series gives you a fly-on-the-wall perspective into the making of the film as it was happening.

Exclusive Production Photo Gallery
Scroll through a never-before-seen gallery of candid cast and crew shots, each with captions.

"Duel of the Fates" Music Video
One of the most popular music videos during its release in May 1999, the "Duel of the Fates" video intertwines live footage of John Williams conducting the London Symphony Orchestra with behind-the-scenes clips and dramatic footage featured in Episode I.

Posters and Print Campaign
Examine the Episode I theatrical posters (Teaser and Launch) and the International Outdoor advertising used to support the release of Episode I around the world.

Trailers and TV Spots
Watch the theatrical teaser and launch trailers, plus seven TV spots (including the five original "Tone Poems" along with "The Saga Begins" and "All Over Again").

"Star Wars: Starfighter-The Making of a Game" from LucasArts
This featurette offers insight into the making of the popular flight action combat game along with information on other Star Wars games from LucasArts.

Exclusive DVD-ROM Content
Your Episode I DVD is a key that unlocks exclusive Star Wars content only available through a special DVD-ROM website. ... Read more

Reviews (2449)

5-0 out of 5 stars 5 stars for DVD quality, 3 stars for the movie
I'm reviewing only the DVD, and not the movie itself, which was a bit of a stinker, in my opinion. Well produced, beautifully filmed, but very poorly written.

Anyway - this is an awesome and incredibly well done DVD. Lots and lots of extras. Great commentary by Lucas, the producer, the sound man, etc. Interview with the composer. Lots and lots and LOTS of background materials on the making of the film, and the entire process of putting it together from initial writing to final production, and the making of the DVD itself.

The image of the movie is *very* crisp and clean. The deleted scenes are a nice addition to the movie. I am very impressed (and surprised, to be cynical about it) that Lucas has given us the full-featured DVD the first time out, and not offered us one scaled down DVD version, only to offer us a better version in a year, and then the full-scale one a year after that, like he's constantly done with the VHS versions of his movies. Thank you, Lucas, for taking care of your fans this time, and not trying to pad your pockets a few times before giving the fans what they *really* want.

Quality-wise, this is absolutely one of the most loaded, best-featured DVDs I have in my collection.

(as a p.s. - after hearing Lucas' commentary, and talking about some things coming up in the next movies, I have realized that a few things I criticized about this movie actually make sense oin terms of the upcoming story-line. However, I still think that, overall, the writing for this movie was only a cut above old b-movies)

4-0 out of 5 stars OK Movie, Great DVD
The Phantom Menace was probably the most heavily anticipated movie in history. It was the prequel to the original Star Wars series and George Lucas was taking the helm as director for the first time since Star Wars in 1977. The film was hyped incessantly and, of course, the final product failed to live up to the expectations. The Phantom Menace is not a bad film. It actually is absolutely amazing to look at and the special effects are incredible. The problem with the film is the plot. It seems disjointed as it bounces around from scene to scene. It seems that Mr. Lucas was to preoccupied with getting the film to look right than the actual story (which is what made the first Star Wars so great). Many people weren't happy with the casting of several roles, especially Ewan MacGregor as Obi Won Kenobi, but he does a decent job in an undeveloped role. Liam Neeson is commanding as Qui Gon Jin and Natalie Portman is quite good as Queen Amadala. The biggest complaint that most people had with the film was with the character of Jar Jar Binks and I won't disagree with most of what's been said about the annoying character. Mr. Lucas has previously shunned the DVD arena (American Graffiti is the only one of his films to appear in the format), but he goes about this release with a vengeance. The extras, including seven deleted scenes, are worth buying this DVD alone. Mr. Lucas spent an additional four million dollars on them and the money is well spent.

5-0 out of 5 stars prequel?
in this one,there is a council of jedis who rule everything and keep the peace.yoda,ben,some black dude and on like that.a younger ben finds a little kid-who is called anakan and later vadar.that kid wins his freedom with bens help in a very cool pod race.ben recognizes the force in the little one and decides to train him as a jedi.the bad guy is darth maul who has a double bladed light saber-very cool.hes the coolest looking character yet.i think peple came down too hard on jar-jar.hes a dork but there have been a lot worse.the kids will like it.it is the 4th part but the first episode.everybody should go see this one because just anybody will like it.anakans mom was pretty nice if she cleaned herself up.this movie isnt as good as the tv says but they blow everything all out of proportion anyway.this movie is abselutely incredible though.i think the black dude may be in the matrix too.its good too.the special effects are good.after this there is one more.then there is an animated short film.there is also another one on the way next summer.

2-0 out of 5 stars To Lucas: Eye of the Tiger, Man!!
To quote the famous lines by Apollo Creed from Rocky III, "You lost for all the wrong reasons, you lost your edge. Eye of the tiger, man!"
A good analogy when you think of it...

When Lucas made the first trilogy he was a relativly unknown up-and-comming writer/director full of desire and well, "hunger" to make his mark. That drive lead to the masterpieces of pop culture we know as ANH and ESB. By ROTJ his edge was already waning but thankfully it was the last one... or so we thought.

By the time TPM came out he lost it completely and produced a quite mediocre if at best ordinary film. Living like a king for the past 20+ years made him not "hungry and full of desire" but fat and content. He lost his edge.

Peter Jackson's LOTR Trilogy is so much better than Lucas' last 2 efforts for this same reason. Jackson has the "eye of the tiger"!

Lucas HAS to get his edge back. Most agree AOTC is better than TPM but not by much. Will episode 3 prove that Lucas got it back??

If only reality played out like the fantasy of Rocky III and Lucas brings home a REAL winner....

1-0 out of 5 stars What drug was George Lucas on?
I love Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi. I think that George Lucas should have stopped there. The two movies: The Phantom Menace and the Attack of the Clones....SUCK! What was George Lucas thinking? Jar Jar Binks needs to tossed off the face of the earth, and Hayden Christansen (while hot), needs to take some acting lessons. Not enough special effects in the world could make me want to see the third release. Poor acting and writing have made me want to run for cover! Where's the FORCE when you need it? ... Read more


4. Star Wars Trilogy (Full Screen Edition)
Director: George Lucas, Irvin Kershner, Richard Marquand
list price: $69.98
our price: $41.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0001YRVN4
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 13
Average Customer Review: 3.84 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (777)

4-0 out of 5 stars I love the Star Wars Trilogy S.E., warts and all...
I'm somewhat ambivalent about the Special Edition versions of the Star Wars trilogy. On one hand, I rather like the idea that Lucas decided to re-tool the legendary saga more towards his original vision of how he wanted them to look, using modern movie magic technology that had just been a far-off dream when he originally produced these films . On the other hand, I also feel that one should just accept a movie's shortcomings, despite the stature of legend they have attained, and just get on with life. But, I must admit that a lot of the enhancements and expansions worked fairly well, and looked convincing in most cases. Unfortunately, not ALL of the new moments passed muster in my eyes...

I was finally glad that some of the Biggs Darklighter footage was restored to Star Wars (aka prior to the Death Star run). For many years I've heard about these cut scenes- Biggs and Luke talking about the future on Uncle Owen's moisture farm, and the hangar reunion- and had high hopes of finally seeing them. Unfortunately, only the hangar reunion was put back in. The moisture farm intro may well be forever lost...

Another weird addition was Greedo firing first before Han plugged him from under the table in the Cantina. Talk about revisionist history! And the new Jabba scene didn't look that great to me. The CGI Jabba looks a bit too smooth. He was a good sight more wrinkled and warty in both Episode I (Before Star Wars) and Return of the Jedi. Also, you do NOT step on the tail of the most influential crime lord on the planet! I mean, I know they had to tweak the scene to make it work, but still! That should've called for Han's execution right there! Hey, is that Boba Fett hangin' out in the hangar with Jabba? Cool, now he's in all three films!

Then there's that concentric ring of energy that flies outward after the explosions of both Alderaan and the Death Star. Aside from being an unnecessary embellishment, I found this little addition to lack originality as well. This same effect was used in the opening of 'Star Trek VI'. Whoops... I just mentioned 'Star Trek' in a 'Star Wars' review... so much for renewing my fan club membership! Heh...

'Empire' has the fewest changes of the three. The only part I have a problem with are the scenes of Vader boarding his shuttle on Cloud City following his battle with Luke, then exiting his shuttle onto his flagship. Like the explosion rings, I found this to be an unnecessary embellishment; I already got the drift about how he got to his ship from Cloud City, all right? There's also a slight change of dialogue in one scene, following R2D2 getting spat out by the swamp monster in Dagobah. See if you can tell the difference!

I don't have too many complaints about the "improvements" done to Return Of The Jedi, aside from yet another energy ring expanding from the explosion of the second Death Star. The new Jabba's Palace band was pretty neat, but I still prefer the original three-piece band from the original version. I guess I'm just a sentimental kinda guy. There were a few scenes cut from the original release I was hoping to see (Vader force-strangling an Imperial Guard who blocks his attempts to speak with the Emperor, and an Imperial officer being punished by another Imperial guard for insubordination)... no such luck. The expanded Ewok celebration at the end was pretty neat to watch, and included an all-new John Williams composition that has become my second-favorite 'Star Wars' tune (right behind 'The Imperial March- Darth Vader's Theme', from The Empire Strikes Back of course).

I'm not an absolutist about the widescreen format, but in the case of the Star Wars trilogy, it's an absolute necessity. There's just too much happening on both sides of the screen, and you're likely to miss something important. In this case wider IS better.

I just wish they'd finally release these movies on DVD. Like many of the other Amazon reviewers, I too am getting a bit fed up of the constant VHS re-releases. Let's get with the times here!

'Late!

5-0 out of 5 stars Best DVD's Ever
When the Star Wars trilogy arrives on DVD on September 21, the digitally remastered and restored films will be accompanied by over 10 hours of bonus material that goes inside the making of these classic movies.

Each film resides on its own disc, with sharp, pristene imagery restored and remastered by Lowry Digital Images, and the rich sound experience of the saga presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround EX. The films also include new commentary tracks, featuring insights from George Lucas, director Irvin Kershner, actress Carrie Fisher, sound designer Ben Burtt, and Industrial Light & Magic's Dennis Muren.

The fourth disc is packed with bonus material, the most notable being Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy. This two-and-a-half hour documentary traces the evolution of the saga, from a low-budget labor-of-love space saga to the movie phenomenon that defied the odds and reinvented the rules.

This comprehensive documentary features all new interviews with George Lucas and more than 40 members of the cast and crew from the original trilogy, as well as a host of filmmakers and media personalities. Empire of Dreams includes some never-before-seen behind-the-scenes footage from the making of the three films.

Other material on the fourth disc includes:

Episode III Behind the Scenes Preview: The Return of Darth Vader: Finally, Star Wars: Episode III will reveal just how Anakin Skywalker became Darth Vader, the most iconic villain in film history. In this exclusive preview, George Lucas discusses Anakin's descent, with a first look at the new Vader costume forged for Episode III. Also, experience how Hayden Christensen and Ewan McGregor have prepared for the epic lightsaber battle that has been anticipated for more than two decades: the climactic showdown between Anakin and Obi-Wan Kenobi.

The Birth of the Lightsaber: Its unforgettable hum and scintillating glow are instantly recognizable around the world. Now, viewers will discover the origins of this elegant weapon from a more civilized age in this documentary devoted to the lightsaber.

The Characters of Star Wars: An in-depth look at how favorite characters came to be, featuring rare concept art, behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with George Lucas and the cast and crew who shaped the screen's favorite heroes.

The Force Is With Them: The Legacy of Star Wars: Star Wars opened up a galaxy of possibilities to a generation of filmmakers and creative talents. Hear from some of the most notable filmmakers of our time about how influential the Star Wars movies have been to their lives.

Star Wars Battlefront Trailer and Playable Demo: The fourth disc will offer a trailer featuring an exciting look at the upcoming Star Wars Battlefront video game from LucasArts, along with a special demo for Xbox users that lets players fight the Battle of Endor as a Rebel or Imperial soldier and drive AT-STs, ride speeder bikes and use different weapons to lead their side to victory. The full version of Star Wars Battlefront will also be released Sept. 21 for the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and PC.

Star Wars: Episode III Making the Game Preview: Video-game players will be able to experience the stunning Jedi action of Episode III themselves in the new Star Wars: Episode III game, due out in Spring 2005 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox. This special feature shows how game developers at LucasArts worked behind-the-scenes and on the set to create the most authentic Jedi experience ever.

Original Trailers and TV Spots: The original theatrical teaser, launch and re-release trailers for each film, plus TV spots, are featured on the DVD.

Never-Before-Seen Production Gallery: Delve into an unseen corners of the Lucasfilm Archives with exclusive photos from the making of the trilogy, with hundreds of rare behind-the-scene images.

Posters and Print Campaigns: The original releases of the Star Wars films came at a time when international campaigns produced a wealth of intriguing, alternative poster art. Explore a collection of theatrical posters from around the world.

Exclusive DVD-ROM Content: The Star Wars Trilogy DVDs are keys that unlock exclusive content available only through a special DVD-ROM website.

5-0 out of 5 stars M-I-G-H-T-Y F-I-N-E
the star wars trilogy was byfar the best trilogy I have ever seen!!!!!!!!!!!!!! all of the star wars movies were MIGH-TY FINE, and to the guy that said star wars was a LOTR rippoff, I can't see where you are going with your story, its nothing like LOTR, and I for one are one of those people you were talking about and as long as the star wars movies come out i'll help make Lucas richer!!

5-0 out of 5 stars A Classic!
I just recently purchased a DVD player and knew that the Star Wars Trilogy would have to be in my collection ASAP. Of course I've these three movies many, many times, but for some reason I never tire of seeing them again. The first one brings back many childhood memories (my brother had a Star Wars themed bedroom!) and it's comforting to put it on just to have as background noise when my apartment gets too quiet. I guess that is the true meaning of a classic movie - you love it so much that it becomes a part of yourself.

The added interviews and such on this DVD were pretty insightful to me and the bonus disc of "never before seen" footage from making the three movies had me giddy with delight!

I can't imagine anyone not wanting to have this set in their collection!

2-0 out of 5 stars Lord of The RIngs Ripoff!!!
The Star Wars legacy was directly stolen from The Lord of The Rings novels, which were publised in the 1950s. It's shameless, I tell you, shameless!

First there's Luke Skywalker, who has to leave behind his friends to face the evil all alone. But he gets to take along a little droid named R2-D2. This is obviously based on Frodo Baggins and Samwise Gamgee in Lord of the Rings. Then there are the wise Jedi Masters, Yoda and Obi Wan Kanobe. These two characters were obviously based on Tolkien's Gandalf.

Han Solo is a carbon copy of Aragorn. Princess Liea, the warrior hottie, is a ripoff of Eowyn in the Lord of the Rings. Chewbacca is just a ripoff of Gimli. And what about Boba Fett, the mysterious loner who is loyal to no one, who is only out for himself? This is just a ripoff of Gollum. The Death Star is really Mount Doom. Darth Vader is Saruman, and The Empoeror is Saruman.

And then there's Lando Calrisian, who is stolen from J.R.R. Tolkein's character King Theoden. You know, the cowardly ruler who bow's down to the bad guy, then finds his courage to fight! The storm toopers are just Orcs. And the most shameless ripoff of all is the Imperial Walkers in Empire Strikes Back! They are just like the Mumakil monsters in Lord of the Rings.

I can't believe how George Lucas become so filthy rich through thievery!! ... Read more


5. Appleseed (Limited Collector's Edition with Metal Case)
Director: Shinji Aramaki
list price: $29.98
our price: $22.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007OY31Q
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 257
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Amazon.com

The 2004 Appleseed feature is a reworking of the earlier video based on the manga by Masamune Shirow (Ghost in the Shell). In 2131, most of humanity has withdrawn to the glittering city of Olympus after a devastating war. When the curvaceous Deunan Knute comes to Olympus, she encounters her former comrade Briareos, now a cyborg, and the lovely android Hitomi. The fate of Hitomi, Olympus, and humanity rest on the lost "Appleseed" technology that Deunan's mother helped to develop. A standard series of chases, mecha battles, and confrontations leads to a predictable ending. When the original Appleseedappeared in 1988, it felt like a summary of anime's past, while Akira pointed the way to the future. This new version feels like a mishmash of Ghost in the Shell, Akira, Jin-Roh, Evangelion, and other, more exciting works. The motion-capture CG is typically weightless, and the mecha look oddly squat. (Rated R: violence) --Charles Solomon ... Read more

Reviews (19)

5-0 out of 5 stars The best Anime movie of all time
Graphically speaking, this is the best anime movie of all time. And they had a limited budget. The story is magnificent, and the dialogue is ok. The city driving in a hover car was the best and most colorful part of the movie. Plus the beginning of the movie with the gruesome head crushing and blood mist in the air-WOW. This anime is better than great, Its Magnificent.

4-0 out of 5 stars Distopia
This animation is based on a comic by Masamune Shirow, a master of depicting distopian futures in which humanity must struggle with technology for its survival.In this case, much of the world has been destroyed by war, but one oasis of humanity exists, Olympus.Thanks to its balance of human and android inhabitants, it has been able to maintain a peaceful existance.However, there are those with prejudices who want to disrupt this balance.Can Olympus surivive?

An attempt was made to maka a fully 3D animated feature like Pixar.However, there was a conscious effort to stick closely to the style common in anime.It's interesting to see the 2D world of anime come to life in full 3D.However, it was not an entirely successful transition.The characters are oddly weightless, so at times, it looks like dolls moving around on screen rather than flesh and blood (or steel!) characters on screen.In fact, this looks mostly like the intro to a game stretched out over 2 hours.For this, a take away one star, but it's still worth checking out. A good effort was made, and I hope we get more along this line, with better animation of course.

5-0 out of 5 stars beautiful
A great movie all around. Great animation, lots of action, a thought provoking plot and a great adaption of Shirow's orriginal Appleseed manga.

The Limited Edition Collector's Tin is well worth it too. An extremely nice case, very impresive.

5-0 out of 5 stars HOLY CRAP, THAT WAS AWESOME!I'm no anime fan, but...
"APPLESEED - DVD"

I'm no anime fan but if they look this good and have this kind of amazing action I'm soon to be a huge one. I can't get over the fantastic action sequences and the way a cartoon movie had such a realistic look and feel to it. Also, the characters were very interesting. So much so, it made me want to care about them. The CGI is nothing short of incredible and when these huge vehicles come crashing towards the screen...well it's nothing short of amazing, too. I just can't say enough good things about this movie.
I was reeled in the entire time and I can't remember the last time I could say that about any movie. I tried to get into anime once before by watching the COWBOY BEBOOP movie but I just didn't get a feel for it. Now, after watching APPLESEED, I can't help but feel I may really be missing out on something.
FAN or NO FAN of Anime, if you like ACTION and tons of EYE-CANDY then don't hesitate to own "AppleSeed". I can't imagine anyone not loving this movie. It's nothing short of amazing. I only wish I'd purchased the 2-disc version first, so I could have saved a few bucks, because I must see the extras for this movie.

TWO THUMBS UP and a huge MUST SEE!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Some of the best CGI ever
This is, hands down, some of the best CGI anime ever made.Movement is smooth as silk, and realistically rendered; character interaction with background and surroundings is perfect.The storyline is well-written and the characters are rounded and believable. Even the dialogue, a perennial weak point for anime, is excellent.

The only thing that lags here is the voice-over work, another area in which anime suffers as a whole.Perhaps this is because all the development money on these project is typically spent on artists and rendering equipment. The work of anime voice-over actors (especially English ones) is of generally poor quality and Appleseed is no exception.

Appleseed instantly became a top-5 item for me, equalling and in some respects, surpassing the Ghost in the Shell saga. ... Read more


6. Star Wars - Clone Wars, Vol. 1 (Animated)
Director: Genndy Tartakovsky
list price: $19.98
our price: $13.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0006Z2LMO
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 824
Average Customer Review: 4.56 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars AWESOME MINI-SERIES!
If this doesn't come out on DVD, I'd be so mad. Sammari Jack was an awesome show, and Star Wars with Sammari Jack influence is an amazing experience. I taped all but four episodes, two of which were the best ones, so I'd really like it if they'd make this, and so do you. Trust me.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fills in the Gaps
I found that this series filed in a lot of gaps, similar to the Episode 1 explanation of Midaclorians (sp?). The fast paced, serialized structure of the serries is very interesting. I love how I suddenly "jumped to the edge of my seat", ok recliner, on several occasions. I can't wait for the DVD to be released!

2-0 out of 5 stars Just like the new movies good action bad plot
Terrible, Terrible, Terrible!
This series suffers from the same problems as the new movies, horrible plot, and a perversion of the characters from the original series. Just like the new movies the action was cool and I enjoyed every lightsaber battle, but I never cared who won. In fact the obi-wan in the new movies was more recognizable than the blood thirsty general they portray him as here. This series is at its best when it is just long dialogue free battles, but then why not just watch Samurai Jack at least that has characters I care about and it doesn't further tarnish the universe of Star Wars.

5-0 out of 5 stars RELEASE ON DVD!!!!
Even the "making of" was excellent! I can't stand the suspense! I've recorded every episode in order and transferred to VCD, but I'd much rather have a crisp, clean picture and 5.1 sound so that I can feel the thrusters of Anakin's ship knocking me back in my seat! THX sound would be fantastic for this movie (since it is, more or less, episode 2.5). I find it more entertaining than Episode II, and it cleans up some of the loose ends that would have been forgotten with the release of Episode III. Genndy, is a genius! Lucas, you're a great man for allowing this to be made! Just take the next inevitable step and release it on DVD at least in time for Christmas!

5-0 out of 5 stars George Lucas, you better be taking notes . . .
Having grown up with the original trilogy (I was born May 25, 1977. No joke. Look it up SW fans), I have to say that so far the prequals have NOT been Star Wars films at all. They do not capture the essence of the original trilogy.
However, these little cartoons, these Clone Wars 'toons bring the magic and essence of Star Wars back to Star Wars. They are worthy of the original trilogy. The writing and stories are exciting and action packed (wow, even space battles! Seems Mr. Lucas forgot about the space battles in the prequels), the acting is better than the actors in the prequels (except Ewan McGregor) and the voices are dead on. If you haven't seen these - go to the website and stream them. When the DVD comes out, it will have a perminate place right next to the original trilogy. ... Read more


7. Appleseed (Limited Collector's Edition with Metal Case & Action Figure)
Director: Shinji Aramaki
list price: $49.98
our price: $39.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007OY32A
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 2172
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Amazon.com

The 2004 Appleseed feature is a reworking of the earlier video based on the manga by Masamune Shirow (Ghost in the Shell). In 2131, most of humanity has withdrawn to the glittering city of Olympus after a devastating war. When the curvaceous Deunan Knute comes to Olympus, she encounters her former comrade Briareos, now a cyborg, and the lovely android Hitomi. The fate of Hitomi, Olympus, and humanity rest on the lost "Appleseed" technology that Deunan's mother helped to develop. A standard series of chases, mecha battles, and confrontations leads to a predictable ending. When the original Appleseedappeared in 1988, it felt like a summary of anime's past, while Akira pointed the way to the future. This new version feels like a mishmash of Ghost in the Shell, Akira, Jin-Roh, Evangelion, and other, more exciting works. The motion-capture CG is typically weightless, and the mecha look oddly squat. (Rated R: violence) --Charles Solomon ... Read more

Reviews (19)

5-0 out of 5 stars The best Anime movie of all time
Graphically speaking, this is the best anime movie of all time. And they had a limited budget. The story is magnificent, and the dialogue is ok. The city driving in a hover car was the best and most colorful part of the movie. Plus the beginning of the movie with the gruesome head crushing and blood mist in the air-WOW. This anime is better than great, Its Magnificent.

4-0 out of 5 stars Distopia
This animation is based on a comic by Masamune Shirow, a master of depicting distopian futures in which humanity must struggle with technology for its survival.In this case, much of the world has been destroyed by war, but one oasis of humanity exists, Olympus.Thanks to its balance of human and android inhabitants, it has been able to maintain a peaceful existance.However, there are those with prejudices who want to disrupt this balance.Can Olympus surivive?

An attempt was made to maka a fully 3D animated feature like Pixar.However, there was a conscious effort to stick closely to the style common in anime.It's interesting to see the 2D world of anime come to life in full 3D.However, it was not an entirely successful transition.The characters are oddly weightless, so at times, it looks like dolls moving around on screen rather than flesh and blood (or steel!) characters on screen.In fact, this looks mostly like the intro to a game stretched out over 2 hours.For this, a take away one star, but it's still worth checking out. A good effort was made, and I hope we get more along this line, with better animation of course.

5-0 out of 5 stars beautiful
A great movie all around. Great animation, lots of action, a thought provoking plot and a great adaption of Shirow's orriginal Appleseed manga.

The Limited Edition Collector's Tin is well worth it too. An extremely nice case, very impresive.

5-0 out of 5 stars HOLY CRAP, THAT WAS AWESOME!I'm no anime fan, but...
"APPLESEED - DVD"

I'm no anime fan but if they look this good and have this kind of amazing action I'm soon to be a huge one. I can't get over the fantastic action sequences and the way a cartoon movie had such a realistic look and feel to it. Also, the characters were very interesting. So much so, it made me want to care about them. The CGI is nothing short of incredible and when these huge vehicles come crashing towards the screen...well it's nothing short of amazing, too. I just can't say enough good things about this movie.
I was reeled in the entire time and I can't remember the last time I could say that about any movie. I tried to get into anime once before by watching the COWBOY BEBOOP movie but I just didn't get a feel for it. Now, after watching APPLESEED, I can't help but feel I may really be missing out on something.
FAN or NO FAN of Anime, if you like ACTION and tons of EYE-CANDY then don't hesitate to own "AppleSeed". I can't imagine anyone not loving this movie. It's nothing short of amazing. I only wish I'd purchased the 2-disc version first, so I could have saved a few bucks, because I must see the extras for this movie.

TWO THUMBS UP and a huge MUST SEE!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Some of the best CGI ever
This is, hands down, some of the best CGI anime ever made.Movement is smooth as silk, and realistically rendered; character interaction with background and surroundings is perfect.The storyline is well-written and the characters are rounded and believable. Even the dialogue, a perennial weak point for anime, is excellent.

The only thing that lags here is the voice-over work, another area in which anime suffers as a whole.Perhaps this is because all the development money on these project is typically spent on artists and rendering equipment. The work of anime voice-over actors (especially English ones) is of generally poor quality and Appleseed is no exception.

Appleseed instantly became a top-5 item for me, equalling and in some respects, surpassing the Ghost in the Shell saga. ... Read more


8. Appleseed (Widescreen) (2004)
Director: Shinji Aramaki
list price: $19.98
our price: $14.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007OY31G
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 674
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Amazon.com

The 2004 Appleseed feature is a reworking of the earlier video based on the manga by Masamune Shirow (Ghost in the Shell). In 2131, most of humanity has withdrawn to the glittering city of Olympus after a devastating war. When the curvaceous Deunan Knute comes to Olympus, she encounters her former comrade Briareos, now a cyborg, and the lovely android Hitomi. The fate of Hitomi, Olympus, and humanity rest on the lost "Appleseed" technology that Deunan's mother helped to develop. A standard series of chases, mecha battles, and confrontations leads to a predictable ending. When the original Appleseedappeared in 1988, it felt like a summary of anime's past, while Akira pointed the way to the future. This new version feels like a mishmash of Ghost in the Shell, Akira, Jin-Roh, Evangelion, and other, more exciting works. The motion-capture CG is typically weightless, and the mecha look oddly squat. (Rated R: violence) --Charles Solomon ... Read more

Reviews (19)

5-0 out of 5 stars The best Anime movie of all time
Graphically speaking, this is the best anime movie of all time. And they had a limited budget. The story is magnificent, and the dialogue is ok. The city driving in a hover car was the best and most colorful part of the movie. Plus the beginning of the movie with the gruesome head crushing and blood mist in the air-WOW. This anime is better than great, Its Magnificent.

4-0 out of 5 stars Distopia
This animation is based on a comic by Masamune Shirow, a master of depicting distopian futures in which humanity must struggle with technology for its survival.In this case, much of the world has been destroyed by war, but one oasis of humanity exists, Olympus.Thanks to its balance of human and android inhabitants, it has been able to maintain a peaceful existance.However, there are those with prejudices who want to disrupt this balance.Can Olympus surivive?

An attempt was made to maka a fully 3D animated feature like Pixar.However, there was a conscious effort to stick closely to the style common in anime.It's interesting to see the 2D world of anime come to life in full 3D.However, it was not an entirely successful transition.The characters are oddly weightless, so at times, it looks like dolls moving around on screen rather than flesh and blood (or steel!) characters on screen.In fact, this looks mostly like the intro to a game stretched out over 2 hours.For this, a take away one star, but it's still worth checking out. A good effort was made, and I hope we get more along this line, with better animation of course.

5-0 out of 5 stars beautiful
A great movie all around. Great animation, lots of action, a thought provoking plot and a great adaption of Shirow's orriginal Appleseed manga.

The Limited Edition Collector's Tin is well worth it too. An extremely nice case, very impresive.

5-0 out of 5 stars HOLY CRAP, THAT WAS AWESOME!I'm no anime fan, but...
"APPLESEED - DVD"

I'm no anime fan but if they look this good and have this kind of amazing action I'm soon to be a huge one. I can't get over the fantastic action sequences and the way a cartoon movie had such a realistic look and feel to it. Also, the characters were very interesting. So much so, it made me want to care about them. The CGI is nothing short of incredible and when these huge vehicles come crashing towards the screen...well it's nothing short of amazing, too. I just can't say enough good things about this movie.
I was reeled in the entire time and I can't remember the last time I could say that about any movie. I tried to get into anime once before by watching the COWBOY BEBOOP movie but I just didn't get a feel for it. Now, after watching APPLESEED, I can't help but feel I may really be missing out on something.
FAN or NO FAN of Anime, if you like ACTION and tons of EYE-CANDY then don't hesitate to own "AppleSeed". I can't imagine anyone not loving this movie. It's nothing short of amazing. I only wish I'd purchased the 2-disc version first, so I could have saved a few bucks, because I must see the extras for this movie.

TWO THUMBS UP and a huge MUST SEE!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Some of the best CGI ever
This is, hands down, some of the best CGI anime ever made.Movement is smooth as silk, and realistically rendered; character interaction with background and surroundings is perfect.The storyline is well-written and the characters are rounded and believable. Even the dialogue, a perennial weak point for anime, is excellent.

The only thing that lags here is the voice-over work, another area in which anime suffers as a whole.Perhaps this is because all the development money on these project is typically spent on artists and rendering equipment. The work of anime voice-over actors (especially English ones) is of generally poor quality and Appleseed is no exception.

Appleseed instantly became a top-5 item for me, equalling and in some respects, surpassing the Ghost in the Shell saga. ... Read more


9. Star Wars - Episode I, The Phantom Menace (Full Screen Edition)
Director: George Lucas
list price: $29.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006JDU9
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 5153
Average Customer Review: 3.48 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (2449)

5-0 out of 5 stars 5 stars for DVD quality, 3 stars for the movie
I'm reviewing only the DVD, and not the movie itself, which was a bit of a stinker, in my opinion. Well produced, beautifully filmed, but very poorly written.

Anyway - this is an awesome and incredibly well done DVD. Lots and lots of extras. Great commentary by Lucas, the producer, the sound man, etc. Interview with the composer. Lots and lots and LOTS of background materials on the making of the film, and the entire process of putting it together from initial writing to final production, and the making of the DVD itself.

The image of the movie is *very* crisp and clean. The deleted scenes are a nice addition to the movie. I am very impressed (and surprised, to be cynical about it) that Lucas has given us the full-featured DVD the first time out, and not offered us one scaled down DVD version, only to offer us a better version in a year, and then the full-scale one a year after that, like he's constantly done with the VHS versions of his movies. Thank you, Lucas, for taking care of your fans this time, and not trying to pad your pockets a few times before giving the fans what they *really* want.

Quality-wise, this is absolutely one of the most loaded, best-featured DVDs I have in my collection.

(as a p.s. - after hearing Lucas' commentary, and talking about some things coming up in the next movies, I have realized that a few things I criticized about this movie actually make sense oin terms of the upcoming story-line. However, I still think that, overall, the writing for this movie was only a cut above old b-movies)

4-0 out of 5 stars OK Movie, Great DVD
The Phantom Menace was probably the most heavily anticipated movie in history. It was the prequel to the original Star Wars series and George Lucas was taking the helm as director for the first time since Star Wars in 1977. The film was hyped incessantly and, of course, the final product failed to live up to the expectations. The Phantom Menace is not a bad film. It actually is absolutely amazing to look at and the special effects are incredible. The problem with the film is the plot. It seems disjointed as it bounces around from scene to scene. It seems that Mr. Lucas was to preoccupied with getting the film to look right than the actual story (which is what made the first Star Wars so great). Many people weren't happy with the casting of several roles, especially Ewan MacGregor as Obi Won Kenobi, but he does a decent job in an undeveloped role. Liam Neeson is commanding as Qui Gon Jin and Natalie Portman is quite good as Queen Amadala. The biggest complaint that most people had with the film was with the character of Jar Jar Binks and I won't disagree with most of what's been said about the annoying character. Mr. Lucas has previously shunned the DVD arena (American Graffiti is the only one of his films to appear in the format), but he goes about this release with a vengeance. The extras, including seven deleted scenes, are worth buying this DVD alone. Mr. Lucas spent an additional four million dollars on them and the money is well spent.

5-0 out of 5 stars prequel?
in this one,there is a council of jedis who rule everything and keep the peace.yoda,ben,some black dude and on like that.a younger ben finds a little kid-who is called anakan and later vadar.that kid wins his freedom with bens help in a very cool pod race.ben recognizes the force in the little one and decides to train him as a jedi.the bad guy is darth maul who has a double bladed light saber-very cool.hes the coolest looking character yet.i think peple came down too hard on jar-jar.hes a dork but there have been a lot worse.the kids will like it.it is the 4th part but the first episode.everybody should go see this one because just anybody will like it.anakans mom was pretty nice if she cleaned herself up.this movie isnt as good as the tv says but they blow everything all out of proportion anyway.this movie is abselutely incredible though.i think the black dude may be in the matrix too.its good too.the special effects are good.after this there is one more.then there is an animated short film.there is also another one on the way next summer.

2-0 out of 5 stars To Lucas: Eye of the Tiger, Man!!
To quote the famous lines by Apollo Creed from Rocky III, "You lost for all the wrong reasons, you lost your edge. Eye of the tiger, man!"
A good analogy when you think of it...

When Lucas made the first trilogy he was a relativly unknown up-and-comming writer/director full of desire and well, "hunger" to make his mark. That drive lead to the masterpieces of pop culture we know as ANH and ESB. By ROTJ his edge was already waning but thankfully it was the last one... or so we thought.

By the time TPM came out he lost it completely and produced a quite mediocre if at best ordinary film. Living like a king for the past 20+ years made him not "hungry and full of desire" but fat and content. He lost his edge.

Peter Jackson's LOTR Trilogy is so much better than Lucas' last 2 efforts for this same reason. Jackson has the "eye of the tiger"!

Lucas HAS to get his edge back. Most agree AOTC is better than TPM but not by much. Will episode 3 prove that Lucas got it back??

If only reality played out like the fantasy of Rocky III and Lucas brings home a REAL winner....

1-0 out of 5 stars What drug was George Lucas on?
I love Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi. I think that George Lucas should have stopped there. The two movies: The Phantom Menace and the Attack of the Clones....SUCK! What was George Lucas thinking? Jar Jar Binks needs to tossed off the face of the earth, and Hayden Christansen (while hot), needs to take some acting lessons. Not enough special effects in the world could make me want to see the third release. Poor acting and writing have made me want to run for cover! Where's the FORCE when you need it? ... Read more


10. The Transformers - The Movie
Director: Nelson Shin
list price: $19.95
our price: $14.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00004YA6T
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 1226
Average Customer Review: 4.51 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (426)

5-0 out of 5 stars Stop Complaining
I REALLY hate these reviewers saying this is a bad dvd. For 20 bucks, you get enhanced visuals and sound, a commentary from the composer [Music is halfthe movie, after all!], AND the uncut edition you'd previously have to buy through Canada or bootleg! Rhino could've sold this at 30 bucks-like most dvd's-but they're LOSING money by selling it to the fans at vhs retail. If you think Lucas will give you a better deal, then don't buy this and wait another decade for the Star Wars trilogy! And yes, I consider this the best deal I've ever had on a dvd! It's perfect, exactly like I remembered it, but with the curse words I missed the first time around. It almost makes me feel like I'm watching Macross Plus; that's how good it looks and sounds. Transformers fans-like myself-MUST own it. DVD's like this are reasons I'm glad to own a dvd player. Now let's hope the He-man movie on dvd happens too. (And I mean the animated movie, not the horrible live action-flick with Dolph Lundgren.)

4-0 out of 5 stars The coolest Transformer movie created!
This movie rocks! Just if you're wondering, the Transformers are two legions of robots who war over the control of their home world, Cybertron. These robots convert from vehicle to robot, whenever they please. The good guys are the Autobots: Hot Rod, Kup, Blurr, RC, Ultra Magnus, Blaster, Wreck-Gar, Perceptor, Ironhide, Jazz, Cliffjumper, Bumblebee, Grimlock, Slag, Sludge, Snarl, Swoop, and of course, the legendary Optimus Prime (there are other Autobots; too many to list). The bad guys are the Decepticons: Megatron, Starscream, Astrotrain, Bombshell, Kickback, Barrage, Shrapnel, Venom, Soundwave, Thundercracker, Bonecrusher, Hook, Laung Haul (Bonecrusher, Hook, Laung Haul and a bunch of other guys combine to form the most powerful Decepticon called Devestator), and more.
What really was dumb to jam in the movie was 2 swear words. I thought the coolest scene in the movie was Hot Rod opening the Matrix of Leadership and Transform into Rodimus Prime, and also "lighting their darkest hour" while playing "The Touch" in the backround. Having the coolest soundtrack a director could dream of, this movie is probably the coolest you'll ever see! By the way, the Transformers theme song and the song called "Dare" are in my favorite range of soundtrack. Hope this reveiw helped everyone who read it.

5-0 out of 5 stars One word AWSOME
I went to see this movie when I was a teen in the theaters. It was an awesome movie to see in the theaters. Now my son is into the Transformers and found my VHS of the movie and plays it all the time. He actually likes it better than ARMADA, ENERGON BEAST WARS and MACHINE WARS. About 4 years ago I went thru a lot of trouble getting a VHS of the movie (It took me over a year of searching and finally I got it from a Canadian video company). I'm glad to see the DVD has come out. It is a great movie a lot of action, humor and watching it with my son he sees that war has consequences. Every now and then we will put sound thru the stereo and put the headphones on. Now I got to get the DVD because he may wear out the VHS.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best of theTransformer's movies.
I went to see this movie when I was a teen in the theaters. It was an awesome movie to see in the theaters. Now my son is into the Transformers and found my VHS of the movie and plays it all the time. He actually likes it better than ARMADA, ENERGON,BEAST WARS and MACHINE WARS. About 4 years ago I went thru a lot of trouble getting a VHS of the movie (It took me over a year of searching and finally I got it from a Canadian video company). I'm glad to see the DVD has come out. It is a great movie a lot of action, humor and watching it with my son he sees that war has consequences. Every now and then we will put sound thru the stereo and put the headphones on. Now I got to get the DVD because he may wear out the VHS.

5-0 out of 5 stars Disney can take their movies and stick em up their wazoos
Disney artists need to take lessons from this movie. Disney uses a lot of lazy computer animation, which usually looks horrible.

This movie is 99 percent actual hand drawn animation. All of which looks superb.

The music is also great. About 6 great songs with that 80's hard rock attitude.

For another example for great hand drawn animation, check out G.I. Joe the movie. ... Read more


11. Star Wars - Episode II, Attack of the Clones (Full Screen Edition)
Director: George Lucas
list price: $29.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006HBUI
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 2289
Average Customer Review: 3.38 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1926)

4-0 out of 5 stars The force is strong with this one.
Star[]Wars! The series has come back into full swing with 'Attack of the Clones.' Everything that 'Phantom Menace' tried to be and more, we return to the rollicking space adventure that made the first three classics. Don't pay attention to the negitive reviews, aside from a little cheese covered romance the goods are delivered in great fashion. 'Attack..' is packed with extremely well lensed action set pieces that remind the viewer of the summer of 1980. The acting is decent and works for the material provided...I mean, this is Star Wars not Shakespere and lines are delivered with intended monotonality; lightsabers speak louder than words and emotion a Jedi does not crave. I found this film to be better than 'Return of the Jedi' due to its return to the swashbuckling action/adverture of the first two movies sans cute little talking kid friendly creatures that help generate mechandise sales for the toddler marketing target group. The special effects are outstanding of course, and the sound effects were really cool. The story was decent enough to get you to care what happens to the heroes and dislike the villians (finally, villians. That seemed to be missing from episode one save Darth Maul who was way underused). All around an excellent chapter in the saga and a great movie in itself. This film makes you look forward to the next installment and the man himself-Darth Vader. Thanks, George for reigniting the magic that was, and is, Star Wars.

5-0 out of 5 stars the best of the star wars movies
in this one,yoda fights.this is truly awesome.anakan is growing up.he goes to get his mom from slavery but shes been killed by these nasty little monsters.so he goes genocidal on them all.ben is tring to teach anakan but hes learning way faster than normal and is quite the showoff.the kids will like it.it is the last full length movie of the set.there is an animated short film after this part called clone wars.the last one is due out next summer.just anybody bwill like it.the chick is a young teen ans ends up being anakans girlfriend.i dont know what you heard but this is an all time great.the special effects are cool.this movie is a classic!

2-0 out of 5 stars Big Trouble In Little Greece: Attack Of The Kung Fu Robots
If I were a movie director and for some reason I decided to undertake the project of making the most grotesque parody and mockery ever made of the original Star Wars trilogy, I would do the following:

First, I would open the movie where the main character of the movie -The Jedi- freefalls some 10,000 stories in a sprawling metropolis, all the while narrowly missing multitudes of careening hovercrafts which literally filled the sky, only to finally land safely inside one of them just in the nick of time, nanoseconds before he was about to slam into the ground.

Secondly, I would include the most bland, personality-less, emotionally-uninspiring actors and actresses I could find. Also, I would incorporate pseudo-Greek cultural and archeological elements throughout the movie (which had no relevancy to the sci-fi theme of the movie) so as to confuse the viewer as to what planet...or planets the movie was taking place in...or what universe and epoch(s) for that matter. I'd include several pseudo-romantic scenes where there wasn't an iota of emotion or chemistry between the two love birds and whose forced, stimulated 'romantic scenes' seemed to serve no purpose, either.

I would then attempt to completely destroy...annhilate the original Star Wars's sacred notion of the force -as being stimulated and channeled by spirituality and mind over matter- and any drama associated with it as well. MY notion would be that the measure of one's force can be determined by analyzing mitochondrial DNA samples to tally the number of antibodies present in the protoplasm.

Next, I would blow away the concept of the original Star Wars's wimpy 2-jedi battle scenes with an epic magnitude-12 mega battle scene which consisted of 10,000 jedis and 100,000 jedi foes engaged in flipping-through the-air somersault kung fu moves that render the likes of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and all '70s special-effects-laden Chinese kung fu flics obsolete. You thought that Luke Skywalker jumping 10 feet out of a carbon freeze container was cool? Could Luke Skywalker stay airborne for 10 seconds all the while throwing barrages of backroundhouse kicks and punches? Screw that punchless Luke Skywalker single-blade lightsaber. Behold, I introduce the double-edged light saber which all jedis are equipped with. FULLY FUNCTIONAL AND OPERATIONAL. Only an elite and intelligent class of human being can be a jedi? Not anymore. Any living, crawling, oozing intelligence-devoid parasite, wingless bat or orc -of any gender-can be a jedi.

Finally, I would end the movie with Kung Fu/Force-Master Yoda defeating the Master Evil Jedi with triple and quintuple cartwheel backroundhouse kicks and punches, while airborne, and lightning-fast Tae Kwan Do slaps and curled finger combinations that would put Jackie Chan to shame. The very last scene of the movie would end with the Evil Jedi Master becoming so angry, because of his defeat, that his head grew to the size of a large balloon, then exploded with the force of 20 grenades. Maybe I'd include that scene only in the UNCUT version.

The result: The sci-fi sequel to "Big Trouble in Little China" -Big Trouble in Little Greece: Attack Of The Kung Fu Robots...or as some people may prefer to call it -Star Wars II: Attack Of The Clones.

2-0 out of 5 stars My Take on Mr. Lucas
OK, here's my rant. I'll keep it brief (unlike some other reviewers)

Best Parts:
1. Phantom Menace - Pod Race, Darth Maul
2. Attack of the Clones - Yoda's lightsaber flight

That's it. Everything else in these films is an utter joke. I could go on for many paragraphs, but I'll spare you. You gotta realize that there was a reason George didn't direct Empire or Jedi. He's an awful director. He has no ear for dialogue. The newer digital film process looks really awful. Only good ol' George could manage to waste the talents of Christopher Lee, Sam Jackson, Ewan McGregor, and Natalie Portman. And I think Hayden Christensen is the only other actor who possesses Keanu Reeves' atrocious wooden technique. His Anakin doesn't possess darkness, just stupidity. I hope Lucas gets a tumor in that fat double chin of his. If you don't like it, sue me. He's destroyed the meaning of my childhood favorites, so the hell with him. Do you really think the next film is going to make up for it? Only if it's about four hours long and is directed by someone else.

4-0 out of 5 stars Star Wars is Star Wars-No matter what anyone thinks
I am writing on behalf of all the Star Wars movies. Sure the prequals aren't life changing but they still make the cut worthy of the title Star Wars.Back in the 70s/early 80s America needed a major facelift. We had nothin to look foward to anymore and just went by living. The movies out back then were dark and dreary. our common mythology had faded into the closet. Then came Star Wars. It was just supposed to be another space family film that would eventually be forgotten about. We were decieved. What George Lucas put on this Earth was meant to be. He dragged us out of the gutter and gave us something to talk about. People had a place to escape to and run away from there troubles. It wasn't like your average cowboy movie where you know the outcome and the setting. It was a strange galaxy with weird looking creatures and strange spaceships. It was all so real and lifelike. It was the total opposite of Star Trek. It was cool. People wanted more. They got two more. Each delivering there own set of memories. The lines became legendary. The sound of a light saber instantly recognizable. Movies nowadays are always borrwing lines and plots of other movies. Star Wars only borrowed one thing. Creativity. The Star Wars story was pulled out of mid-air. It wasn't like George Lucas said he wanted to make a space movie kind of like an old western. He created the idea of A Space Saga Trilogy. He's the one who threw us into this exciting new world called Star Wars. Fans wanted more. They got comics and books. then Star Wars movies were no more. They were still in the movies. Oter movies had borrowed lines and plots for their own. Thats why Star Wars is pop culture ICON. That is what the prequals lack. When someone comes up yo you with a stick in one hand and is waving it around they don't say "Watch out Count Dooku". They say watch out Darth Vader. The prequals are good movies but they aren't life changing like the Classics. If the prequals came first people wouldn't be walking around saying Look A destroyer droid. They don't have the trademark line like they do in the Classics. They didn't create new famous lines, they just took them from the old ones. As a movie I would give Phantom Menace and AOTC a 4 Star award. As a Star Wars film I would give it 2. The negative two is for lack of creativity. The OT is so popular because of what it was nd what it was created as. George did'nt give us that sense of story and herics like he did with the OT. George didn't create the OT because he wanted to tell a story for himself. He made it for us. For Episode one we weren't thrown into this new world with weird craetures and memorable charecters. In a sense of story The prequals fit nicely with the OT. But for a regular movie It gives us nothing to remember and say over and over again and to instantly recognize as Star Wars. I know it is hard to repeat what happened in the 70s/80s but there was nothing George Lucas could do about it. The Prequals are out in a world where evereything has already happened and didn't ignite the flame as the OT did. The Phantom Menace just continued in the name of Star Wars. The OT are just such good movies in themselves and it just doesn't matter which one you see first. They are all memorable. Don't get me wrong, the prequals are good movies and definantly worthy in the name of Star Wars but they are just thrown in with all the other movies which were created around one movie-Star Wars. Other movies wouldn't be the same without there Star Wars moment. That is why when in the movie Just Married Sarah(Brittany Murphy) asks Tom(Ashton Kutcher) if he ever dreamed of anything more glorious in his childhood than his wedding night, he flashes back to when he was playing lightsabers on the playground with other kids to the famous tune that Changed The World. Da da da DAAAA daa-you know the rest!
"Remember, the Force will be with you, Always" ... Read more


12. T2 - Extreme DVD
Director: James Cameron
list price: $19.98
our price: $14.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00008PC2O
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 980
Average Customer Review: 4.52 out of 5 stars
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Description

He said he'd be back.This time experience T2 like never before!Go EXTREME with the best picture and sound ever!ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER returns as the Terminator in this explosive action-adventure spectacle.Now he's one of the good guys, sent back in time to protect John Connor, the boy destined to lead the freedom fighters of the future.LINDA HAMILTON reprises her role as Sarah Connor, John's mother, a quintessential survivor who has been institutionalized for her warning of the nuclear holocaust she knows is inevitable.Together, the threesome must find a way to stop the ultimate enemy - the T-1000, the most lethal Terminator ever created.Co-written, produced and directed by James Cameron ("The Terminator," "Aliens," "Titanic), this visual tour de force is also a touching story of survival. ... Read more

Reviews (595)

5-0 out of 5 stars T2 eXtreme:Nice case,nice extras,AMAZING image/sound quality
This is a truly wonderful dvd. If you own a home theatre system or seek the highest quality in dvd image and sound, this is the dvd for you. The high defenition version of the film is only playable with a high-end PC, but the special edition and theatrical versions on the tv are a big improvement on the 'ultimate edition dvd'. This is due to the brand new high quality transfer. The extras aren't amazing, but their pretty good. There is a documentary on T2's effect on the film industry and an 8 minute featurette on 'Life on the Set'. There is some great new DVD-ROM content though. There's a great little morphing program which takes a while to master seeing as there are few instructions. There is also a fun T-800 'FX Studio' in which you shoot at your imported digital photos to reveal your friend's or granny's endoskull. There is also a 'Skynet Combat Chassis Designer'. I haven't a clue what this is as I haven't used it yet, but I think it's some kind of online game. I have read several reviews with complaints about the metal outer case, but I had no problem whatsoever. The only advise I can give is to push in the front and back of the sleeve when taking the inner case out. It comes out no-problemo. If I had to choose betweem the 'Ultimate Edition' and the 'Extreme edition', I'd stick with Extreme. If however, I didn't have a dolby sound system and/or a widescreen tv, I'd take the 'Ultimate' (Way more Extras) - Oh, and by the way, the movie itself is probably one of the best films ever made.

4-0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate And The Extreme
I was upset when Artisan announced yet another version of T2 (I think this makes 3 reissues but I lost count). Why? For those of us out there, who consider ourselves DVD-Philles, most of us already own the "Ultimate Edition"of T2, which is pretty dang cool in its right. I made up my mind. I wasn't going to fall into that trap. I was burned by The Mummy and American Pie and learned the hard way-not again

Having said that...Once I heard that writer/director James Cameron and co writer William Wisher had recorded a new audio commentary for the film. I have to hand it to Artisan..this was a shrewd move. One of the minor quibbles I had with the previous release of T2, was its audio commentary. As good as it was to have a lot of contributors, the last time out, I could tell that the track was just "pieced together" from different parts of the disc. Most of the info on the track was just "lifted" This was the only downer on the "ultimate edition" The "new" is very good and worth a listen. As for the film, the 2 disc "extreme edition", has both the special extended cut, and as an "Easter Egg", the theatrical cut as well. I have to admit, the look of the T-1000 (Robert Patrick) and his morphing looks pristine, as does the original Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger). But I would also caution that the High Definition Digital transfer will only look like a real improvment if you have the equipment to handle the technology. Luckily, for me, I have a friend with an updated system, but it's still not the top of the line

As for the other extras in the set, they are just ok. There are 2 new retrospective documentaries. One one the film's ground breaking effects; The other, is a "life on the set" montage, while the film was still in production. You can also build your own Terminator and track its progress online, and rounding out the set's extras is a graphic fact track about all things Terminator.

With this edition, be warned, you lose many of the extras found on the previous edition. But the Cameron/Wisher audio commentary is still quite a draw. Mega fans of T2 should have both, while others should think carefully, Ultimate wins for its extra content, while Extreme gets points for a great commentary--I have both for now...I still don't like multple special edition DVD's of the same film

5-0 out of 5 stars one of the if not the best sequel ever!
in this sequel to the awesome original,arnold is a good guy sent back to protect john conner.another newer model of terminater comes after them.this t-1000 is made from quasi-liquid metal.it can be solid or liquid as needed.johns mom sarah decides to go and waste the dude who found the original terminaters hand and was largely responsible for the eventual takeover by the machines.this is a bit much for smaller kids.the action is incredible in this one.the first part was a indt film.this one cost 80 million dollars and made 78 million in its first weekend.it is the best of the 3 id say.if you are squeamish,you might want to go see bambi instead.belive it or not,its even emotional in a spot or 2.sara isnt a tenny bopper in this one but a dykey rambo bitch.her shrink isnt around long,but while he is,he is very obnoxious.of course he lived.it seems the guy in any movie who really needs killed,never gets it.sara deserved an award for this one.she did an awesome job playing a psycho with a lot on her mind.the message is no fate but what we make.in part 3 youll see that just isnt true,but i alredy knew that.intensity galore!sara plays a very intense character.all the action,the nukes,it freakin rocks!this is arnolds best!the special effects kick ass too.they made a 3rd.im hoping for a 4th also.but since it takes 10 years for another sequel,id better not hold my breath.and,by the way,who cares if arnolds to old.cant they find another musclehead to play some sort of new terminater?its do-able.we know it.hollywood knows it.so get off your lazy asses and make it already.i belive its about time for the big showdown between machine and man.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Epitome of Action Films
We are all too familiar with the story of this movie, so I will spare you the details. "The Terminator" was a sleeper sci-fi hit that was a rarity in its genre. Movie-goers were beginning to see sci-fi films that rose above others in the genre and even other genres. "Alien", "Blade Runner", "Star Wars", and, the film that started the revolution, "2001: A Space Odyessy". What made "Terminator" so different was not just another bleak view of the future, but a tense, edgy thriller with some damn fine writing. But while it took an effort to make films like those, it took a greater one to make a sequel. "Aliens", "The Empire Strikes Back", and very few others accomplished this task successfully. As for "T2", unless you've been living under a rock, we all know how well it did. This is definitely the best of the series (in my opinion at least) and definitely one of the best action movies to grace the face of our planet. This is the movie that also started the trend of making action movies with ridiculously huge budgets and paying action stars ridiculously huge salaries. But T2 delivers, with a great story, stunning visuals, and Schwarzenegger in his prime. Plus who can forget Brad Fiedel's synthetic score which has been parodied numerous times?
Why another DVD though? This film has been put on DVD almost as many times as "Independence Day". Special features are somewhat reserved here, so what justifies another release? DVD producer Van Ling answers the question in a quaint little insert about how new technology has developed since the last T2 transfer. They can now present T2 the way it should be, digitally mastered from a 1080p, 24sf digital telecline transfer for "superior video and audio quality". This release of T2 is aimed toward the home theater crowd. All that confusing talk means that the picture is presented with more clarity.
And the sound is just awesome. The DTS track has been dropped from the "Ultimate Edition" in exchange for a Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround EX track and a Dolby headphone track. If you have the technology, try to watch a DVD with a DTS track whenever possible. In the case of this DVD, there's only the Dolby 5.1 EX track. But the track on this "Extreme DVD" defies both the Dolby and DTS tracks from the "Ultimate Edition". It takes full advantage of a dimensional sound field.
The goodies here are minimal; a SFX documentary, a behind the scenes montage, and a few DVD-ROM goodies that I didn't bother to try. But there is the original version of the film available to Windows Media Player 9 users on the second disc. You can watch it on the first disc as well, it's disguised as an easter egg. On the main menu of Disc 1, hit the right button five times while highlighting "Play Extended Version". There's also an enhanced mode with behind the scnes and there's a spankin new commentary by James Cameron himself.
But the question remains; is this DVD worth buying? It really boils down to what your reasons are for buying this new DVD. If you don't own the film, yes. If you're troubled by the mediocre video quality of either of the first two releases, then yes. If you want Cameron's commentary and other new supplements, yes. And if you want to playback T2 in HD on your PC (and even if you find that your computer equipment is currently insufficient for HD playback), yes. But if you want extensive behind the scenes, you might want to stick with your "Ultimate Edition". This "Extreme Edition" delivers though, despite falling short in the behind the scenes section.

5-0 out of 5 stars awesome
okay. I just saw this movie and its the best movie ever made and james cameron is the best director ever.Now lately I keep reading all this comotion between the extreme version and the ultimate version. Well i'd pick the extreme. The reason I didnt pick the ultimate is because even though it has great quality its probley nothing close to the picture and sound on the extreme version. I also didnt pick it because its to hard to find. I picked extreme for many reasons. Lets start with the picture and sound its awesome nothing else to say. It also has an also metal case that I heard ruins the dvd inside it but still its awesome. Now as a previous reviewer said extreme dosent have the special extended edition well I dont really care {no offence to the previous reviewer who wrote that} because it only has 2 minutes of more footage {litterly} I think the scene of the t-1000 searching johns room is cool and I wouldent mind that in the movie but the special extended edition ruins the ending with a new "happy ending". Be warned its ruins the ending to the best movie ever. Even though the origian ending on the special edition is good enough. People say that the new happy ending stops a sequel. But see I dont really want to see t3 because it should have ended with t2. and finally yes i'll admit ultimate has more bonus footage extreme has a very godd amount of features as well and extreme is for the great price (...). I have nothing else to say. ... Read more


13. Batteries Not Included
Director: Matthew Robbins
list price: $19.98
our price: $14.98
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Asin: 0783232047
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 3102
Average Customer Review: 4.21 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (33)

4-0 out of 5 stars Critics? HA!
Go figure..if you pay attention to "editorial reviews" for this little movie, a person would never waste a dime to see it.....but this is AMERICA and we ignore critics!!!! (Read the other customer reviews, they couldn't be any more opposite the opinion of our "critics". Hundreds of times they've hated a movie and it's been terrific, whether at the box office or when it hit video)

Perhaps there's not enough here for these two to bite into, but Mr. Maltin and Mr. Keogh should be less nasty and critical of this film and criticize something else....Patton, Full Metal Jacket, Platoon, whatever....you can leave this little movie alone...It's for kids, guys. Amusing, while not too heavy except some violence regarding the apartment building with some smashing and burning, which of course is repaired by the "little guys". Small flying saucers, "little guys" as Jessica refers to them, zoom all over New York secretly repairing "stuff" that's not perfect......silly yes, but who cares? It's a fantasy..... Go with it for goodness sake. Hume Cronyn (Frank Riley) and real life wife, Jessica Tandy (Faye Riley) act together in too few a number of films (Cocoon and its sequel, are a couple). Each character in the movie has his/her problems, each prays for a little help and gets it in this most curious way, feeling God answered them in this way.

It's a fantasy....don't be expecting oscar performances from anyone. Jessica thinks the local fire bombing hood, Carlos, is her deceased son, who was in a car wreck years before. She suffers from altzheimers and so doesn't remember he's dead. Referring to Carlos, as Bobby; all the while he's trying to burn their building to ashes. Elizabeth Pena, (Marissa) is a very pregnant, single female trying to exist day to day with hoodlums harassing her every coming and going at the building. She finds her knight in shining armor, Mason, a not too productive resident painter, and he ends up with our lonely Marissa. It's predictable, but OK.

Frank McRae, ex-boxer, has been punched one too many times while professionally boxing, yet somehow manages to title the movie during one of his only speaking lines.....figure that one, but that's how the movie got its name, they planned it that way!

This film may not one win any oscars, but 95% of the movies I'd bother to review, I own; this is one of them and I like a good feeling when I finish a movie.

3-0 out of 5 stars Cute Film
When you think about it, there aren't too many movies with a premise like this one. I mean, robot aliens who resemble UFOs that can procreate, raise families, and repair anything at super speed? Pretty unusual.

Something else unusual is that the plot doesn't focus on the robots but the humans who are each trying to hang on to their little piece of home. The robots offer assistance to the main characters and add some comic relief, but the story centers on the human element. The story is well-told and unfolds at the right pace. I thought the acting was also pretty good.

There's one last thing worth mentioning. I notice that the video quality has an odd fuzziness to it. It's barely noticeable and not terribly distracting but potential viewers should be made aware of it. Personally it did nothing to detract from my enjoyment of the movie.

This film was made in 1987 so don't expect the special effects to be impressive by today's standards. Remember that, suspend disbelief, and you'll find *Batteries Not Included to be an entertaining experience.

1-0 out of 5 stars Not Enough Batteries Could Power This Lame Film
Another film produced by Spielberg in the vain of "Disney-esque" family fare (i.e. HARRY AND THE HENDERSONS, GOONIES). "Close Encounters" is shrunk down to cute little "tonka toys". The gimmick in *BATTERIES NOT INCLUDED is that the aliens' spaceships (of various shapes for degree of personality) are the characters. You don't see the aliens inside controlling the flying saucers (just like you couldn't see the truck driver in Spielbergs' DUEL). The plot is as old as an OUR GANG short. An evil landlord is about to evict a diverse group of stereotypical poor residences from his tenement slum and the mini-aliens arrive in time to save the day to fight the landlord and his evil henchmen. The actors are then directed to act bewildered, angry, awe-inspired, laugh, cry, and hug each other, around the special effects-laden-E.T. spaceships...(yaaawwwnnn...zzz...zzz!). The title of this movie should be renamed to *ORIGINALITY NOT INCLUDED...or...*ACTING NOT INCLUDED...or...*DIRECTION NOT INCLUDED...or...*BRAINS NOT INCLUDED..or...!

4-0 out of 5 stars Belongs in every children's collection
... whether or not you have kids. It has some moments that might make a four-year-old cling to an adult, but every kid I know likes it. No guns, no bloody fights, no chases, and it still holds their interest.

There's plenty here for an adult - "dotty grandma" isn't a completely comic character here. She's not just a tragic figure of senility, either, though she's some of both. Mostly, she's just making her way through each day the best she can, and better than people seem willing to believe. Most of the other characters are similarly on the edge but muddling by well enough, with a little help from their friends.

I honestly can't call this a science fiction movie, despite its SF elements. It's sweet (almost sappy) and funny, the poor-but-honest folk win out over the thugs and evil corporations, and they all live happily ever after. Well, for now, at least.

If there's ever a list of "most under-rated movies", this one gets my vote. I like it.

5-0 out of 5 stars A sentimental little beauty from Spielberg
This 1987 little sentimental ditty was utterly irresistible to the public, even as critics panned it as too schmaltzy. It concerns a squadron of little UFOs who arrive on the room of a NY apartment building, one which is about to be razed as soon as the owners can manage to evict the quirky bunch of tenants. The tenants include Hume Cronin and Jessica Tandy (always and forever a winning pair) as well as a guy who plays a mentally (or emotionally - or maybe both) disabled man who speaks only in set phrases from commercials or TV jingles or product tags, such as that of the title: Batteries Not Included. As the tenants band together to save the lives of the little aliens, including a spine-tingling scene in which one gives birth, the aliens come to the rescue of the folks in danger of eviction - and the tenants, previously a disparate bunch, come together to form a community.
Heartwarming. Great family entertainment ... Read more


14. Terminator 3 - Rise of the Machines (Widescreen Edition)
Director: Jonathan Mostow
list price: $19.96
our price: $14.97
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Asin: B00005JM0B
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 1362
Average Customer Review: 3.58 out of 5 stars
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Description

A decade has passed since John Connor (NICK STAHL) helped prevent Judgment Day and save mankind from mass destruction. Now 25, Connor lives "off the grid" - no home, no credit cards, no cell phone and no job. No record of his existence. No way he can be traced by Skynet - the highly developed network of machines that once tried to kill him and wage war on humanity. Until?out of the shadows of the future steps the T-X (KRISTANNA LOKEN), Skynet's most sophisticated cyborg killing machine yet. Sent back through time to complete the job left unfinished by her predecessor, the T-1000, this machine is as relentless as her human guise is beautiful. Now Connor's only hope for survival is the Terminator (ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER), his mysterious former assassin. Together, they must triumph over the technologically superior T-X and forestall the looming threat of Judgment Day?or face the apocalypse and the fall of civilization as we know it. ... Read more

Reviews (694)

4-0 out of 5 stars ARNOLD + PRETTY WOMEN + INCREDIBLE EFFECTS = WORTH SEEING.
After a 12 year absence, a Terminator movie is around. One more time Arnold Schwarzenegger repeats his signature role, and despite this time the director of the first two movies James Cameron, the actress Linda Hamilton and the actor Edward Furlong didn't came back for T3, there's new blood on the series.

In "Terminator 3: Rise Of The Machines", there is a new Terminator model, the T-X (Terminatrix), played by the gorgeous Kristanna Loken, who does a good job as a cold and precise cybernetic killer. Also there is a new John Connor, actor Nick Stahl. On this movie John Connor loses a lot of the personality that Edward Furlong printed to the character in "Terminator 2: Judgement Day". However, the pretty Claire Danes fills the hole left by the "new" John Connor, Claire plays Kate, a brave woman that refuses to let the humanity to be destroyed.

The visual effects and the audio effects are incredible. The highlight is a vehicle chase scene, which is jaw-dropping. Despite T3 doesn't have the same depth of the first two movies, is a very enjoyable film and a worthy sequel.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Pleasant Little Surprise...
When I first heard that T3 was coming out I was terrified. I mean, no James Cameron? No Sarah Conner (Linda Hamilton)?? A new guy (Nick Stahl) playing John Conner??? A female terminatrix???? An ancient Arnold creeking along as the terminator????? Boy, was I scared of the potential catastrophe this flick could've been! Well, my fears were unnecessary. T3: RISE OF THE MACHINES was a pleasant surprise. First, though Cameron would have done a completely different film with Linda Hamilton, they both opted out (of T3 and their relationship w/ each other) and there was no hope of their being involved. Jonothan Mostow does a great job, keeping the action at an insane pace, making T3 an excellent 2hr rollercoaster ride. Claire Danes is wonderful as the unfortunate Kate, sucked into the vortex of John Conner's destiny. Kristanna Loken is the perfect ice-cold assassin as the TX Terminatrix. She's beautiful, lethal, and indestructible. The perfect date for yours truly! Nick Stahl is John Conner. I liked him and found him quite believable. That leaves Arny as everyone's favorite cyborg. I was frankly amazed at how good he looks! This future governor of la-la-land looks physically like he did in the first two terminators! Either he's wearing a rubber body, or Arnold is in peak condition. Either way, he IS the terminator and always will be. He delivers his trademark T-101-liners with typical Arny style. As for the storyline, I was so caught up in the explosions and chase elements, I almost forgot what it was all about! It seems that judgement day has only been postponed and the TX has arrived to seek out and destroy John Conner. The T-101 intervenes again, this time protecting both John and Kate in an attempt to save the remnant of humanity from skynet's planetary conquest. Can they escape the TX? What secret does Kate's dad hold? Will Arnold take time off from his office job to do T4? Only time will tell. The only complaint I have is that it could have been longer. Another 20 minutes or so to flesh out the story would've been nice. However, I digress...

4-0 out of 5 stars Funner than the first two, but less story-driven
While the first two movies were more story-driven, apocalyptic affairs, this Terminator is pretty much all explosions and has a slightly disappointing ending, but is still an awesome movie. The special effects are mindblowing and Arnold looks like he hasn't aged a bit (botox? plastic surgery? natural youthful looks? a mix of all three? :-) Anyhow this movie is sweet and actually really isn't that violent except for a murder at the vet clinic and a nasty impaleing scene in a cop car (if you've seen it, you know what I mean). It's awesome though, rent it first and if you like it as much as I do (a lot) then pick it up.

5-0 out of 5 stars talk to the hand!
in part 3 here,sara conner is dead.john conner is in his early 20s and keeping his self impossible to trace.they send this extremely sexy terminater chick to kill his officers since he cant be located.arnold must protect john and this other chick who is an officer later on.they call her a captain.a cap is by no means 2nd in charge like they say in the movie.that would be a general.arnold shows again in another excellent performance in the terminater movies.i dont know who that sexy chick terminater is but damn is she fine!john,however,is really ugly and nasty.his officer,the chick is pretty but an uptight bitch.its kind of violent for children.this is as youve read already the third part to this fantastic series.the bad terminter chick has many neat powers like dna testing,talking to other machines,mimicking dial up tones,controllling other machines etc.there are a few more.its the second best of the 3 .any terminater fan will love it.only like squeamish and non-intellectual sell out julia roberts types will not like this.but screw them anyway.no fate but what we make does not carry over to this one.this is arnolds second best.the special effects are cool.the action is great.im still waiting on a 4th part with the man vs machine war.

3-0 out of 5 stars John Conner a drugie loser?! Otherwise good fun.
I thought this movie on par with Alien 3 of the Alien movies. Not bad but not near as good as the first two.

The chase scene is probably the best in all the Terminator movies. It was jaw dropping! The effects are superior to the first two. Arnold was great as always but looked a little older which makes no sense. The terminatrix was very cool and interesting. I liked the "down" ending too.
The problems were the bad acting (nowhere near as good as the first 2), no Linda Hamilton and terrible characterization of the John Conner character.
I couldn't believe what a disapointing John Conner this was. He looks nothing like the kid from T2 and Nick Stahl can't emote half the feeling or charm that the little boy did. This John Conner was also written terribly; he is homeless, a drug user and has absolutely no ambition or leadership qualities. So this movie basicaly claims that NONE of his mother's toughness and kick-ass asertivness rubbed off on him and basically he's just a big whiney loser at this point??? He's so pathetic that it is impossible to believe that he'll EVER lead any ressistence movement of any kind.

Its a good action flick but nothing more. I hope there won't be anymore of these but it looks like this ending is setting up more movies. Arnold is now Govenor of Cali. so I don't see him coming back again, at least. ... Read more


15. Metropolis (Restored Authorized Edition)
Director: Fritz Lang
list price: $29.95
our price: $22.46
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Asin: B00007L4MJ
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 2322
Average Customer Review: 4.31 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential video

Fritz Lang's Metropolis belongs to legend as much as to cinema. It's a milestone of sci-fi and German expressionism. Yet the story makes minimal sense, and the "theme" belongs in a fortune cookie; to experience the film's pagan power, you have to see the movie. But for decades we couldn't, not really--not with so many versions, all incomplete, often in public-domain prints like smudged photocopies. This Murnau Foundation restoration changes all that. Some shots, scenes, and subplots may be lost forever, but intertitles indicate how they fit into the original continuity and the characters' individual trajectories. Most crucially, the images are crisp, vibrant, and three-dimensional instead of murky and flattened. The composite sequences (the Tower of Babel, a sea of lusting eyes) have been restored to their hallucinatory ferocity. And there's one moment when you can see a bead of sweat roll down a man's cheek--in medium long-shot. --Richard T. Jameson ... Read more

Reviews (94)

5-0 out of 5 stars At Last
Fritz Lang's METROPOLIS was very successful with both critics and audiences when it debuted in 1927 Berlin--but it was thereafter edited for distribution by Channing Pollock, who disliked it and removed great chunks of the film and substantially altered the storyline. The resulting film was admired for its visual style, but it proved a critical and box office disappointment. Neglected in the wake of sound, surviving prints of the film were left to corrode and decay--and when it began to reach the home market via VHS and DVD the results were very hit or miss; Blackhawk released a fairly credible version of the truncated film to home video, but for the most part the quality of these releases varied from barely mediocre to downright unwatchable.

Until now.

A great chunk of METROPOLIS--perhaps as much a quarter of more--has been forever lost, but this Kino Video DVD release offers the single best version of the film available. The previously cut footage that still exists has been restored; gaps in the film have been bridged by the occasional use of stills and explanatory title cards; the film itself has been painstakingly and digitally restored; and the soundtrack is the Gottfried Huppertz original created for the film's 1927 Berlin debut. In seeing this version of METROPOLIS, I was struck by how very differently it reads from the previously available truncated version. The visual style and the story itself are much more exciting and cohesive, and in the wake of this restoration it becomes impossible to deny the film status as landmark of international cinema.

Freder Fredersen (Gustav Frohlich) is the son of Joh Fredersen (Alfred Able), who reigns over the great city of Metropolis. Freder is surprised to discover his lifestyle has been built on the unseen but backbreaking labor of an entire class of unseen workers who tend the machines that make the city run--and he descends to the subterranean levels of Metropolis in an effort to understand their lives... and, not incidentally, to find the mysterious but beautiful woman Maria (Brigitta Helm) who has inspired his interest in the workers' plight. But his father is concerned by both Freder's interest and Maria's activities among the workers, and he turns to scientist C.A. Rotwang (Rudolf Klein-Rogge) for aid. Rotwang has created a robot, and he agrees to give it the likeness of Maria in order to undermine both Freder's love for the girl and her own activities. But Rotwang has a hidden agenda of his own: once the robot has been unleashed, he will use her to destroy Metropolis and thereby exact revenge on Joh Fredersen for past transgressions against him.

In many respects the story is simplistic, but the film's visual style and connotations are anything but. Deeply influenced by such art movements as Expressionism, Objectivism, Art Deco, and Bauhaus, the film is visually fascinating--not only in its scenic designs, but in director Lang's famous skill at creating the powerful crowd scenes that dominate the film and building the pace and tension of the film as it moves toward an intense climax. But while one can--and many do--admire the film purely at this level, there is quite a lot going on in terms of philosophical content as well: while it offers few viable solutions, the film raises such issues as the relationship between capital and labor, the place of religion in modern society, human reaction to overwhelming technology, and (perhaps most interestingly) the drift of government into a class-conscious corporate entity. And religious motifs abound in the film: a largely deserted cathedral; Moloch; the Tower of Babel; and crosses--intriguingly juxtaposed with a repeating motif of the pentagram-like designs associated with the robot. It is fascinating stuff.

There has been complaint that this restoration runs at incorrect speed and the performances are therefore unnecessarily jerky. I did not find this to be the case. In certain instances the movement is deliberately jerky and mechanical--the workers are a case in point--but beyond this there is nothing for which the difference between silent acting and modern acting techniques cannot account. There has also been some complaint that the title cards should have been left in their original German and translated via subtitle. There is a certain validity to this, but it seems a minor quibble; title cards were typically translated in the silent era itself. The DVD includes a number of extras, including still photographs, biographies of the major figures involved in the film, and two interesting documentaries-one on the restoration process and one on the creation of the film itself. Both are interesting; the audio commentary track by film historian Enno Patalas, however, is mildly disappointing. But when all is said and done, it is the film that counts. And this restoration is a remarkable achievement, to say the least, a project which brings a great landmark of world cinema back from the edge of the abyss. Indispensible; a must-own.

--GFT (Amazon Reviewer)--

5-0 out of 5 stars Spectacular, must-have DVD for any film buff
Metropolis was quite a stunning film for its time. It had "Star Wars" quality special effects which were unheard-of back then--all amazingly done by hand and combined with tedious optical effects. Considering the massive effort and talent required, it was far more ambitious and deserving of praise than Star Wars, which had the luxury of more modern technologies to fall back on. If you view Metropolis in this context, and consider the time period, you can't help but be impressed. In fact, as you watch it, imagine the amazed reaction it must have received in theaters back in the 1920's. Audiences at that time had never seen anything like it. For at least the next 50 years, this film held its own--quite a feat.

The Kino-produced DVD is in itself impressive. It is the absolute best version of the film ever to be made available in any form to the public. The video quality is astonishing considering the difficulty they must have had finding good prints to work with. The audio, too, is superb. You'll really enjoy the extra bonus material as well.

So get this DVD, pop up some popcorn, turn out the lights, and transport yourself back to the 1920's. You're really going to love this one.

5-0 out of 5 stars Magnificent job
Of all silent films, maybe the only one still watched by a wide public today is Metropolis. Everyone who knows about science fiction knows about Metropolis.
Unfortunately the film was birth-strangled - like Once Upon a Time in America and The Magnificent Ambersons - and it falls into the strange pantheon of movies that are as fragmentary as any ancient scroll.
This only added to the appeal, of course. Like the wine buff who sighs to drink one of THE French vintages from before 1860, cineastes have spculated and respeculated about this fragmentary masterpiece. Why doesn't the story make sense? What was the movie originally like - and can it be fixed?

It is a pity that this film will almost certainly NEVER be completely restored. Like The Magnificent Ambersons, this is a masterpiece that seems permanently damaged. But in 2002, the next best thing was done; and the most complete possible restoration was carried out.

The results are truly remarkable. You can see that silent films were NOT originally shown in a spotty, scratchy condition with hyperactive actors. When they first came out, silent movies looked just as good as any modern movie (well, maybe less screen-resolution). The original soundtrack was discovered and recorded - and it, too, is a revelation. Silent movies were NOT actually silent - they had live soundtracks (though only rich premieres had full orchestras). The soundtrack is as well-composed as any modern soundtrack. I initially thought I would not be able to get used to another soundtrack after hearing the Moroder version - but now I think I can't see the film any other way.

Most importantly, the film now actually makes sense! Every scrap of film possible was extracted from archives all over the world, to make the film as complete as is humanly possible. The scenes still missing (alas, comprising a quarter of the film even now) are signified by intertitles telling the audience what they ought to be seeing. This is not a perfect compromise, but it's probably the best solution.

Silent movies often look strangely modern, since they concentrate almost entirely on visuals at the expense of the actors (a feature that, incidentally, made movies easier to show overseas than any modern movie). Compare that to our movies, which are very heavy on visuals and contain the simplest and least amount of dialogue possible in order to cater to foreign markets. Also, the complete manipulation of the image, so favoured in Metropolis, is very much like modern computer graphics.

5-0 out of 5 stars Silent Masterpiece
In today's cinematic world, silent movies are often a difficult category to approach. Silent movies are usually referred to almost like a separate genre, as if black and white movies were a single genre. Even silent flick enthusiasts sometimes don't have the right attitude, because the modern appreciation of pre-talkie movies is sometims nothing more shallow than appreciation of a movie because it is a silent movie. This attitude streams from the modern audience that views the silent era as embryonic of the talkies, as technologically handicapped, when in fact, the contemporary audiences of the 20's did not view their motion pictures the same way.

Metropolis is a great move that overcomes most of the barriers between moderns audiences and silent movies. The genre is unmistakably sci-fi--the forerunner to nearly all modern sci-fi movies. It was a fantastic movie that just happens to be a silent movie, and anybody who sees it will understand that silence is not a handicap.

The biggest barrier for silent movies is that there are usually variant DVD editions in circulation, and unlike pictures made in the last few decades, it really does matter which edition you see. Kino's restored edition is (and shall be for a while if not forever) the definitive edition of Metropolis. I had been viewing an incomplete, incoherent version of the film for years before i treated myself to Kino's delightfully exhaustive work, and it was then that i realized what i had been missing. Watching this version was like watching a different movie. In fact, the restoration is so immaculate, it was like watching a movie that was just filmed yesterday, or rather, like i was watching it in 1926.

Kino should be praised for the edition (which they have been), that vindicates fans of Metropolis, sci-fi, and silent movies. Even the flaws are reasonable: some scenes are missing, but they are filled in with explanations and still photos, when available; there could have been enough extras to fill 2 more discs, although the extras included are sufficient and repeatable, as compared to the loads of extras fans normally demand but rarely ever watch.

All in all, this is an excellent restoration of an epic movie that deserves this treatment and attention. Include the Kino version in your collection over all of the inferior versions circulating.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best movie by a Jewish director ever!
Fritz Lang was indeed Jewish by his mother. I had seen many previous videotape and DVD versions of Metropolis but this longer version beats them all hands down. It's like I'd never seen this film before as so much new (to me) was in this version. Including more fleshing out scenes of the privelaged, rich class of which Freder is a member of. To the poster named Jeff, M was made by Lang while he was still in Germany. I sure look forward to seeing other silent Lang films anbd even longer versions of Metropolis in the future. Buy it today! ... Read more


16. The Iron Giant (Special Edition)
Director: Brad Bird
list price: $19.96
our price: $14.97
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Asin: B00009M9BK
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 199
Average Customer Review: 4.81 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (317)

5-0 out of 5 stars An absolutely first rate animated film.
It is a shame that Warner Brothers chose to give an uninspired prerelease publicity campaign to the gentle, joyous and original animated movie, The Iron Giant. Precious few saw it in theaters.
Thank God for film preservation in the form of DVD!

Like the book, the picture takes place in 1957, during the height of The Cold War. The Soviet Union's satellite, Sputnik, flies across American skies. Our country is filled with paranoia. What else may they have launched?

One stormy night off the coast of Maine, a huge object falls from the sky. A frightened sailor sees it and swears that it is a giant made of metal. The townsfolk chalk the tale off to the sailor's love of drink. A giant made of metal, indeed!

A night or so later, young Hogarth Hughes, whose Mom is working overtime at the local diner, gets mad when his TV starts acting up. He goes to the roof to check the antenna and finds it missing. He then notices huge footprints leading away from the house and into the woods. He grabs his deceased Dad's old army rifle and a flashlight and goes off in pursuit. He soon discovers that there is indeed a metal giant. In fact, he saves it when it bumps into some high voltage utility wires. The adventure has begun.

Rarely has a movie for children - or adults! - addressed the need to search for a peaceful solution to our problems as gently or as wisely as The Iron Giant. It never preaches and is always accessible. It does not address us from on high. It remains at our level. It also shows how clever we can be at overcoming the most unexpected obstacles. It reminds us that things alien to us are not always hostile to us. In fact, it is we who often initiate the hostilities. Perhaps best of all, The Iron Giant examines these and other issues in the guise of a wonderful story that should hold almost anyone's attention.

The animation is first-rate. Most of the voices are good, especially Harry Connick, Jr.'s as Dean Cooper, a hip young artist. As Hogath's voice, Eli Marienthal speaks like a real boy, not a cartoon boy. Speaking for Hogarth's mother, Annie, Jennifer Anniston gives her a loving quality. Vin Diesel does well with the most difficult voice, that of The Iron Giant.

Rated PG for a couple of spooky scenes and a few mild profanities. Recommended without reservation for children seven and up.

4-0 out of 5 stars The Iron Giant has Landed
Vin Diesel and Jennifer Aniston lend their voices in the first-rate animated adventure "The Iron Giant". In the dawn of the Cold War, a curious New England boy discovers a gigantic metal-eating robot (voiced by Diesel) from another world. Their special friendship is put to the test when the boy must protect his new pal from an ambitious government agent and the US military. "The Iron Giant" is an amazing animated wonder that rivals Disney's best. From director Brad Bird ("The Simpsons"), the film combines a well-written story and some memorable characters. The talented voice cast also includes Eli Marenthal, Christopher McDonald, John Mahoney and Harry Connick Jr. as artistic scrap yard owner Dean McCoppin. The animation is colorful and quite enjoyable. The animated feature is presented in both 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen and standard full screen formats. The DVD contains a detailed video transfer and a well-balanced 5.1 Dolby Digital sound. Its supplemental extras include a delightful "Making of The Iron Giant" featurette and a music video. Despite a lack of supplemental extras, "The Iron Giant" earns a pleasing "B+".

5-0 out of 5 stars It's about time.
Here's what we can expect with this true release of The Iron Giant:

-Anamorphic widescreen format with Dolby Digital 5.1 sound.

-Eight never-before-seen additional scenes with introductions by Brad Bird, including an alternate opening sequence.

-13 mini documentaries revealing the origin and the in-depth development process of The Iron Giant.

-Interviews with creative consultant Teddy Newton on the storyboard sequence development process.

-The Voice Of The Giant: Brad Bird and Vin Diesel discuss voicing The Iron Giant.

-Scene-specific commentaries by filmmakers

-A motion gallery of original animation

-A letter from Ted Hughes, author of the original book upon which the film was based.

-DVD-ROM access to the original web site and Easter eggs revealing the behind-the-scenes filmmaking process.

The only thing I see wrong with this is the box/case. Click on the image here to see a larger version, and you'll see that it's the horrid snap cases. Oh well, at least the movie's getting the treatment it deserves. Pick this up when it comes out.

5-0 out of 5 stars Now this is what we've been waiting for.
Here's what's going to be on this true edition of The Iron Giant:

-Eight never-before-seen additional scenes with introductions by Brad Bird, including an alternate opening sequence.

-13 mini documentaries revealing the origin and the in-depth development process of The Iron Giant.

-Interviews with creative consultant Teddy Newton on the storyboard sequence development process.

-The Voice Of The Giant: Brad Bird and Vin Diesel discuss voicing The Iron Giant.

-Scene-specific commentaries by filmmakers

-A motion gallery of original animation

-A letter from Ted Hughes, author of the original book upon which the film was based.

-DVD-ROM access to the original web site and "Easter eggs" revealing the behind-the-scenes filmmaking process.

This is the treatment the movie should've got in the first place.

5-0 out of 5 stars ONE OF THE BEST ANIMATED MOVIES EVER MADE!
This is seriously one of the best animated movies I have ever seen. Unfortunatley it got poor advertising when the movie came out, and it cost the movie, which did very poor in the box office. But it came back in a big way with the DVD release. I cannot recommend this movie enough to people, and with director Brad Bird now directing the upcoming Pixar movie "The Incredibles," this DVD should do better. If you like a good story, and well done animation I highly suggest this movie for you! ... Read more


17. The Day the Earth Stood Still
Director: Robert Wise
list price: $14.98
our price: $11.24
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Asin: B00005JKFR
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 754
Average Customer Review: 4.74 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (228)

5-0 out of 5 stars "Stood" Still Stands Tall
1951's The Day The Earth Stood Still is a classic in every sense of the word and then some. When a spaceship lands in Washinton D.C. its alien passenger (Michael Rennie) refuses to reveal his purpose for landing on Earth. As the world leaders and their armies debate what to do next, ordinary citizens let fear and paranoia take hold. The key to the alien being's mission to earth rests with a mother Helen (Patrcia Neal) and her son Bobby (Billy Gray). Soon the boy and his mother have the fate of the planet Earth in their hands.

Directed by Robert Wise, the movie, fully restored for the DVD release, has drama, good special effects (for its time) and plenty of social commentary (that's still relevant in today's world). The film is pure magic. Even though, the last time I saw it was some 12 years ago in film school, I think its still one of the best films that I ever "had" to watch.

I have to commend FOX, for the way the film is given the deluxe treatment on DVD. The extras are just superb. The commentary with Wise and (fellow "TREK film") director Nicholas Meyer is a real treat. It's very well done and informative. There's also a "meaty" 70 minute retrospective documentary, archival newsreel footage, a restoration comparison, no less than 5 photo galleries, the shooting script, and the vintage theatrical trailer. To have this many extras on a DVD of an older film is a rare thing. Those fans of the film will be delighted with this disc. And to anyone not familiar with the movie--now's the time. Highly Recommended

5-0 out of 5 stars 20th Century Fox brings this remastered Scifi Classic to DVD
It is 1950 and Hollywood takes an original idea combines it with the genius' of Studio CEO Darryl F. Zanuck, Producer - Julian Blaustein, Director - Robert Wise, ScreenPlay - Edmund H. North, the eerie futuristc Music, a spaceman, a giant robot & the words "KLAATU BARADA NIKTO" and 50+ years later we have the timeless scifi classic, "THE DAY THE WORLD STOOD STILL". Now digitally remastered and on this outstanding DVD.

This outstanding movie is presented with better clarity and sound than the original 1951 film release. This incredible movie now can be enjoyed over & over again without ever losing picture quality.

This 2 sided DVD Full Frame Format (4:3 tv / 1.33:1 aspect ratio - before WideScreen) Black/White as the movie and audio commentary with Robert Wise & Nicolas Meyer on SIDE A and a 70 minute "Making the Earth Stood Still" documentary, Movietone newsreel 1951, Restoration comparison footage, 5 still galleries, shooting script & trailer.

Summary: This movie has an outstanding cast with newcomer Michael Rennie as Klaatu the peaceful (human)alien who visits paranoid earth circa 1951. First stop Washington D.C. Greeted with violence and skepticism, escapes and goes into hiding. He befriends a mother (Patricia Neal) & her son (Billy Gray - also her real son) at a boarding house as he covertly studies the humans behaviors disguised as a businessman. He trys to get the world leaders to reach a world wide peace but they resist his ideas. They are given a sign of his powers by stopping all machinery worldwide, thus "THE DAY THE WORLD STOOD STILL". The ending is perfect and the audiences loved this film.

Even today the special effects stand the test of time and the story is so profound and sheer genius. Hollywood delivered a classic scifi film for all time. "The Day the Earth Stood Still" is a Hallmark film. This is scifi at its best & now this DVD can be added to your home movie library. Enjoy.

5-0 out of 5 stars a great classic sci-fi film
I remember how intreguied I was the first time I saw, "The Day the Earth Stood Still and still am no matter how many times I see it. It's oneof those few movies you can absolutely never tire of seeing. This is one of my all time favorite sci- fi films and would recommend it to anyone. Michael Rennie and Patricia Neal are great in it really wonderful actors that give excellent perfomrances in this film. The setting in Washinton D.C is perfect for unidentified flying objects like a spaceship to land. The Robert is like a star in the film too. Each moment of the film is suspensful entertaining and keeps you guessing what will happen next. There's not a dull moment in the entire film. It's sci-fi at its best. This DVD adition has great extra footage like a documentary very well done and interesting and a trailer and plenty of other things too. Overall it's an exciting film for all ages.

5-0 out of 5 stars Still standing still after all these years
Where does one begin with such a classic film. The Day the Earth Stood Still is the definition of classic. Above average for its genre, the movie still hold its own even today.

Robert Wise did a masterful job directing the picture. Given the fact that he was directing a new and somewhat unknown lead actor in Michael Rennie, Wise did a superb job. Could anyone else have played Clatu other than Rennie?

The premise of the story, a visitation from another planetary system to warn us off our reckless advancement into the nuclear age is very timely even in 2004. Clatu, the alien traveler, needs to discuss the ramifications of our behavior with every nation on Earth but learns that such a meeting is impossible given the petty international squabbling and mistrust of the day. Clatu escapes his captivity in the hospital and moves around disguised as a Maj. Carpenter. He meets Helen Benson (Patricia Neal) and her son Bobby (Bill Gray) and learns about many of our human foibles. Also involved is Hugh Marlow's character, Helen Bensons male companion. Sam Jaffe is wonderful as Prof. Barnhardt.

Eventually, Clatu is shot (a second time) and killed. Gort, the robot, with the intervention of Helen revives Clatu and in a final climatic scene Clatu delivers his message. This is a marvelous film even after 53 years.

The DVD is also well worth the small investment. I purchased my copy at a discount store for $5.50....I should be arrested. I agree with an earlier reviewer that the number of extras devoted to this old film is remarkable.

If you get the chance grab this DVD. Even after all these years the movie is fresh and certainly timely. Also, a final observation. Given the paranoia in most modern movies dealing with aliens, The Day the Earth Stood Still is another perspective on the topic of alien visitations. Its amazing how perverted the whole genre has become. This is certainly a reflection of society as a whole.

5-0 out of 5 stars "Klaatu barada nikto"
There are a handful of 1950's sci-fi movies that have a big reputation - "When Worlds Collide", "The Thing From Another World", "Forbidden Planet", and "The Day the Earth Stood Still". Unfortunately, the first two are really lame in today's world, and only "The Day The Earth Stood Still" really stands up (except for the robot).

Although it has a little of the hokiness inherent to all movies of the 1950's, "The Day The Earth Stood Still" actually has a good meaningful story. The typically-round flying saucer lands in a baseball field in Washington DC. A normal-looking man (Michael Rennie) emerges, offering a small gift. As usual, the military shoots first and asks questions later. A large robot (to be known as "Gort") emerges and stands guard near the ship. In the hospital, the man requests a meeting of all the heads of world government to share an important message. He is told that a meeting of all nations is impossible under the current state of international tension. After recovering a day in the hospital (and self-healing) the man, named "Klaatu", escapes and assumes the identity of Mr. Carpenter (another patient whose clothes he takes). After renting a room in a boarding-house (run by 'Aunt Bea' from the "Andy Griffith Show"), he befriends a young boy ('Bud' from "Father Knows Best"), and later his mother (Patricia Neal).

Klaatu explains his mission on Earth - to bring about the end of nuclear-arms proliferation - to an Einstein-like mathematician, who agrees to help. The mathematician suggests convincing industry and world leaders to meet to hear the message by having Klaatu perform a show of strength. This is the event behind the movie title when Klaatu stops everything that relies on electricity to operate (though sparing hospitals, in-flight airplanes, etc.)

Klaatu confides his plan to Patricia Neal, who helps him. Later, when they are being chased, Klaatu gives the robot-command codewords to Patricia Neal as a safeguard in the event of Klaatu's capture. As is somewhat predictable, the army again shoots first and asks questions later, so Patricia Neal does indeed need to issue commands to the robot, who might otherwise destroy the world.

The robot recovers the dead body of Klaatu from a jail cell and returns him to the spaceship where he undergoes a sort of resurrection. Klaatu is able to give his anti-aggression message to mankind.

The movie was directed by Robert Wise, who went on to "Run Silent, Run Deep", "West Side Story", "The Sound of Music" and "The Andromeda Strain". Score by Bernard Hermann, famous from a long list of Alfred Hitchcock movies, but also for "Citizen Kane" and "The Magnificent Ambersons" prior to "The Day The Earth Stood Still".

The reasonably-priced DVD has the restored black-and-white full-screen movie; a good "making of" documentary; a commentary with director Robert wise and Nicholas Meyer; some "Movie-Tone News" clips from 1951 having to do with a peace treaty, the Korean war, a beauty contest, and an honorary promotional award given to Klaatu (but a different actor in the suit); a restoration comparison; still gallery including the script; and some other goodies.

Highly recommended. Klaatu's message is still valid. ... Read more


18. Forbidden Planet
Director: Fred M. Wilcox
list price: $19.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B00004RF9B
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 1049
Average Customer Review: 4.52 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (151)

5-0 out of 5 stars "It will remind us...after all...that we are not God..."
"It will remind us...after all...that we are not God..."

--Leslie Nielsen as Commander J.J. Adams in the final scene of FORBIDDEN PLANET.

SENSATIONAL SCREENPLAY!!! FANTASTIC MUSIC!!!
EXCELLENT ACTING!!! The producers of FORBIDDEN PLANET took Shakepeare's "The Tempest," teleported the play on the flying saucer C 57-D in the year 2200 AD past the speed of light to the planet Altair 4, threw in a mad scientist, Dr. Edward Morbius--veteran of 100 movies, Canadian Walter Pidgeon--played him opposite a young, rugged handsome space commander--another Canadian, Leslie Nielsen as J.J. Adams, an unusual blend of leading man, space captain, military man, and detective--gave the mad scientist a beautiful daughter named Altaira--21 year old beautiful blonde with a mole Anne Francis, the rumored model for the Barbie Doll--surrounded the leads with terrific character actors like Jack Kelly, Warren Stevens, Earl Holliman, and Richard Anderson (best known as THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN's Oscar Goldman), and then created the GREATEST ROBOT EVER, Robby, master of "187 languages and a variety of subtongues" who serves Morbius and his daughter as security guard, chauffeur, chef, butler, and even occasional dressmaker!--lines by Marvin Miller, the classic voice for the 1950s tv show, "The Millionaire"--mixed in Freudian Psychology, a murder mystery, ray guns, THE HOUSE OF THE FUTURE, an invisible Monster From the Id, OUT OF THIS WORLD BACKGROUNDS, and the result is FORBIDDEN PLANET is a boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl science fiction story with a white hot finish!

Or as Leslie Nielsen says in the final scene,
"It will remind us...after all...that we are not God..."

Chari Krishnan
RESEARCHKING

5-0 out of 5 stars A "hand-crafted" masterpiece of science fiction.
Forbidden Planet is easily one of the finest science fiction movies ever made. Although released in 1956, it still compares favorably with much flashier movies from more recent years. The film is not a "blast-fest" in the Star Wars style, but blends modest action and beautiful hand painted special effects with a fascinating study of basic human nature. Those expecting 1950's B-movie special effects will be pleasantly surprised, as top quality hand rendered artwork abounds, as well as a flying saucer with no strings attached! Also, one of the more memorable big-screen automatons, Robby the Robot, appears in much of the film. The movie also contains some of the best sci-fi film music ever recorded, as it rises and falls to the mood of the scenes. To complement the attractive visuals and sounds is excellent casting, with Walter Pidgeon perfectly suited to the imperious Dr. Morbius. Fine performances by Leslie Nielsen and Anne Francis, among others, help create a dramatic tension you can feel as the film nears its climax. Monsters, mystery and a little humor make Forbidden Planet a genuine classic, which any sci-fi fan should take time to enjoy!

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Sci-Fi
Like all good film science fiction, "Forbidden Planet" keeps its concepts simple but their ramifications grand, which is just one of the reasons it is a timeless classic. Made at a time when sci-fi was the junk that kept restless kids in theater seats on Saturday afternoons, this ambitious take on Shakespeare's "The Tempest" nonetheless also aims for adults that grew up on the pulp fiction of the 1920s and 30s. (Its delightful production design is a seamless mix of colors, forms, and shapes familiar from those imaginative magazine covers.) The premise is Star Trek a decade before Star Trek, as a military cruiser commanded by the hard-nosed but humane J.J. Adams (Leslie Nielsen doing an effective melodramatic turn) visits a world populated by a secretive scholar (a wonderful Walter Pidgeon), his curious daughter (a sometimes grating Ann Francis), their robot butler (the epitome of mechanical men) and a mostly unseen terror (illustrated by topnotch Disney animators). Beyond great special effects and an innovative musical score, the film also engages a firm--if now familiar--science fiction plot, unlike so many of the noisy and expensive but ultimately overwrought and empty-headed sci-fi movies of today.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best of science fiction
This has to be my favorite movie about space travel and alien life. The landing of an exploration spaceship is believable and the technology is also reasonable. When they encounter invisible forces they are frightened and cautious.
They encounter a former explorer who has taken up residence and is a great scientist. Tremendous computer knowledge and Krell metal are just samples of the far out technology. Robbie the robot makes entertaining fun for young folks and there's not much violence - a real plus, I think.

2-0 out of 5 stars "Civilization without instrumentalities?"
There are a handful of 1950's sci-fi movies that have a big reputation - "When Worlds Collide", "The Thing From Another World", "Forbidden Planet", and "The Day the Earth Stood Still". Unfortunately, only "The Day The Earth Stood Still" really stands up (except the robot).

This movie has big concepts, and none of them work anymore, if they ever did. Part thriller, part drama, part mad-scientist melodrama. There are just too many things going on, and all of them "supposedly" explained in long-winded speeches that answer nothing.

"Forbidden Planet" starts off looking much like Star Trek TOS, including the transporter. In reality, ST:TOS creator Gene Roddenberry admits this movie formed part of the basis for Star Trek. In a nutshell, a United Planets space cruiser captained by Leslie Nielsen lands on Altair, against the wishes of its inhabitant, Dr. Morbius, a remnant from a previous expedition. He and his 25 year old daughter (Anne Francis) are the only humans on the planet. There is also a robot called "Robbie" that goes on to stardom in the "Lost in Space" series. The doctor reluctantly shows the others his discovery about an ancient extinct race called the Krell. The "big" ending is too weird and funny to be described.

The entire robot aspect and the tasks he performs is just silly (in the "Lost In Space" vein). Earl Holliman's character of "Cookie" was put in for comedic effect - unfortunately most has to do with his dealings with the robot - including getting the robot to make bourbon - which only adds to the silliness.

The actors are quite serious and for the most part are OK. Leslie Nielsen plays it straight. Anne Francis is entertaining as the daughter. Though initially somewhat innocent and ignorant of sex, as might be guessed, the captain ends up with her.

The sets are incredibly hokey. The all-electronic score does not help. Ambitious, atrociously fake special effects that probably were OK in 1956. Possibly the goofiest sci-fi movie ever. Don't get me wrong - this is a well-made and well-intentioned movie, but as with "When Worlds Collide" and "The Thing...", it is recommended only for a laugh.

A further insult is that the robot is not accurately depicted (wrong "face" and hands) on the DVD cover, and he never holds anyone in his arms. ... Read more


19. Treasure Planet
Director: Ron Clements, John Musker
list price: $29.99
our price: $23.99
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Asin: B00005JLR2
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 3712
Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (128)

5-0 out of 5 stars Treasure Planet is sure to be a hit!
Treasure Planet is the latest animated feature film from Walt Disney. It is based on Robert Louis Stevenson's "Treasure Island", but is set way on the future.

The story is about fifteen-year-old Jim Hawkins, who comes across a map to the greatest pirate trove in the universe. The tale follows Jim's fantastic journey across a parallel universe as a cabin boy aboard a glittering space galleon. Befriended by the ship's charismatic cyborg (part man, cook John Silver, Jim blossoms under his guidance, and shows the makings of a fine spacer as he and the alien crew battle supernovas, black holes and ferocious space storms. But even greater dangers lie ahead when Jim discovers that his trusted friend Sliver is actually a scheming pirate with mutiny in mind.

Although it does look a lot like "Atlantis - The Lost Empire", Treasure Planet is much different than it, because I feel that Atlantis was way too complicated for children to understand the concept and the storyline of the movie, whereas Treasure Planet is based on Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island, a famous classic with a simple storyline. With amazing special effects and cgi technology, this movie is sure to put the audience in awe. The voices provided for this movie are from some famous celebrities like Roscoe Lee Browne, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and David Hyde Pierce which itself is worth watching for.

All in all, I think Treasure Planet will become a sure hit because of all the reasons above. A must watch!!

5-0 out of 5 stars I've seen it 13 times!!!
Action, adveture, the perfect movie. Disney's Treasure Planet is a Wonderful film, one of my top ten, but maybe I'll tell you about that when I review Snow White, if at all. The movie is based on Robert Louis Stevenston's classic novel, I'm sure we've all read it, I have. Jim Hawkins live with his mother while running the Admiral Benbow Inn. Although his sort-of aligned on the wrong tracks, he know how to handle a solar-surfer. One day while coming back from surfing, a ship crash-lands on the dock near the Inn. An ugly turtle-like alien steps out, along with a chest. Being a kind hearted soul, Jim helps him into the Inn. They find out thai his name is Billy Bones, and is trying to hide from pirates. Knowing that he was dying, he gave Jim two things. A treasure map, and a warning to "beware the cyborg". Grabbing the map and his mother, they ran to the back door to escape, not a second too soon, because pirates then raided the Inn, looking for Bones' map. Jim and his mother escaped to they're good friend's house, named Dr. Doppler. (The friend, not the house). After Jim opened the map, they discovered that it led to treasure, the loot of 1,000 Worlds. Eager to see find it, Dr. Doppler & Jim hire a crew, and they set sail. Jim was to give the captain, Captain Amelia, the map for safe keeping. After that, Jim was named Cabin Boy, and was assigned to work with the ship's cook, John Silver. But Jim was terrified to see that he was a cyborg!! But after getting to know him, Jim decided that this couldn't possibly be the one he was told to look out for. They became fast friends, and became very attached to one another. But after accedentally stumbling onto his plot, Jim runs to the captain to warn her. But it was too late. The mutiny had begun. Trying desperately to get to a life boat, Jim loses the map, only to find that Morph, Silver's pet, had changed it's shape to look like it. But fortunately, none of the pirates knew. Knowing that that disaster had taken place, they were now on Treasure Planet, and Jim was to go and find shelter. On the way, they meet up with B.E.N. (Bio-Electronic Navigator) and he offers them his home. He was marooned by the same pirates, with the most famous, Captain Nathaniel Flint. In the middle of the night, Jim, B.E.N., & Morph set out to go back to the ship, dis-arm the laser-cannons, and get the map. Since all but one sly pirate, Scroop, had been left on the ship, they climbed the anchor's chain up to the top. B.E.N. was given the job of dis-connecting the laser-cannons, Morph to distract Scroop, & Jim would go and get the map. But eventually, Morph and Jim ran into each other, so now that Jim has the map, now he has to get rid of Scroop. Fortunately, B.E.N. while trying to find the right plug to puul, pulled the plug on the artificial gravity, so as jim just bearly grabbed the ship's flag as he was floating upward, Scroop passed him, flinging him into space forever. After B.E.N. finally put the gravity plug in, and the laser-cannon plug out, tthey headed back to camp, only to find that Silver had taken Dr. Doppler & Captain Amelia hostage. Forcing Jim to lead them to the treasure, they set off. They finally found it though, and Silver was filling a life boat of treasure. B.E.N. and Jim found something quite interesting, too. Jim found Captain Flint's skelliton, and B.E.N. found his missing memory chip, which Captain Flint had taken away from him, so long ago.When Jim inserted it, B.E.N. remembered about the booby trap, and the whole planet was going to blow!! ... But Jim will always remember his wonderful adventure on Treasure Planet. Well, that's it. I hope this review has helped you and encourages you to get this DVD. P.S. If you like the movie, buy the games.

5-0 out of 5 stars In the top 2 of modern Disney films!
This is up with The Lion King in quality and is modern Disney animation at it's best, unlike the shockingly bad 'Brother Bear'.
Treasure Planet also has real touches from old Disney like Peter Pan, you could see the characters in a line-up with these classic icons.
I went with a group of adults and we ALL found it very funny and yes, I was on the edge of my seat at one point!
I don't understand any criticsm for this - and I' not one of those Disneyoids who likes any Disney film either.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Movie That Makes You Dream
Even if it isn't exactly after the rules of the book, nor gravity, I greatly appreciated this animation movie. The characters were alive and the relationship between old pirate Long John Silver and young lad Jim Hawkins showed what true friendship looks like and that people can change for the better of ways. The soundtrack is also one of the best, the music and the lyrics make you fly off and enter the wonderful world that Disney created to let people dream.

2-0 out of 5 stars What's up with Disney?
Once again Disney disappionts me by making yet another action film to target young boys. And in the proccess making a movie with no heart I could care less about the relationship between that 17 year old and Captian Long John Silver or whatever they called him. Why can't Disney come up with more orginal stuff like Lilo and Stich that movie was halrious! The future for tradional animation is looking darker and darker. Hopefully Home On The Range will brighten things up but not likely. ... Read more


20. Terminator 2 - Judgment Day (The Ultimate Edition DVD)
Director: James Cameron
list price: $26.98
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Asin: B00004TRD8
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 8142
Average Customer Review: 4.52 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (595)

5-0 out of 5 stars T2 eXtreme:Nice case,nice extras,AMAZING image/sound quality
This is a truly wonderful dvd. If you own a home theatre system or seek the highest quality in dvd image and sound, this is the dvd for you. The high defenition version of the film is only playable with a high-end PC, but the special edition and theatrical versions on the tv are a big improvement on the 'ultimate edition dvd'. This is due to the brand new high quality transfer. The extras aren't amazing, but their pretty good. There is a documentary on T2's effect on the film industry and an 8 minute featurette on 'Life on the Set'. There is some great new DVD-ROM content though. There's a great little morphing program which takes a while to master seeing as there are few instructions. There is also a fun T-800 'FX Studio' in which you shoot at your imported digital photos to reveal your friend's or granny's endoskull. There is also a 'Skynet Combat Chassis Designer'. I haven't a clue what this is as I haven't used it yet, but I think it's some kind of online game. I have read several reviews with complaints about the metal outer case, but I had no problem whatsoever. The only advise I can give is to push in the front and back of the sleeve when taking the inner case out. It comes out no-problemo. If I had to choose betweem the 'Ultimate Edition' and the 'Extreme edition', I'd stick with Extreme. If however, I didn't have a dolby sound system and/or a widescreen tv, I'd take the 'Ultimate' (Way more Extras) - Oh, and by the way, the movie itself is probably one of the best films ever made.

4-0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate And The Extreme
I was upset when Artisan announced yet another version of T2 (I think this makes 3 reissues but I lost count). Why? For those of us out there, who consider ourselves DVD-Philles, most of us already own the "Ultimate Edition"of T2, which is pretty dang cool in its right. I made up my mind. I wasn't going to fall into that trap. I was burned by The Mummy and American Pie and learned the hard way-not again

Having said that...Once I heard that writer/director James Cameron and co writer William Wisher had recorded a new audio commentary for the film. I have to hand it to Artisan..this was a shrewd move. One of the minor quibbles I had with the previous release of T2, was its audio commentary. As good as it was to have a lot of contributors, the last time out, I could tell that the track was just "pieced together" from different parts of the disc. Most of the info on the track was just "lifted" This was the only downer on the "ultimate edition" The "new" is very good and worth a listen. As for the film, the 2 disc "extreme edition", has both the special extended cut, and as an "Easter Egg", the theatrical cut as well. I have to admit, the look of the T-1000 (Robert Patrick) and his morphing looks pristine, as does the original Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger). But I would also caution that the High Definition Digital transfer will only look like a real improvment if you have the equipment to handle the technology. Luckily, for me, I have a friend with an updated system, but it's still not the top of the line

As for the other extras in the set, they are just ok. There are 2 new retrospective documentaries. One one the film's ground breaking effects; The other, is a "life on the set" montage, while the film was still in production. You can also build your own Terminator and track its progress online, and rounding out the set's extras is a graphic fact track about all things Terminator.

With this edition, be warned, you lose many of the extras found on the previous edition. But the Cameron/Wisher audio commentary is still quite a draw. Mega fans of T2 should have both, while others should think carefully, Ultimate wins for its extra content, while Extreme gets points for a great commentary--I have both for now...I still don't like multple special edition DVD's of the same film

5-0 out of 5 stars one of the if not the best sequel ever!
in this sequel to the awesome original,arnold is a good guy sent back to protect john conner.another newer model of terminater comes after them.this t-1000 is made from quasi-liquid metal.it can be solid or liquid as needed.johns mom sarah decides to go and waste the dude who found the original terminaters hand and was largely responsible for the eventual takeover by the machines.this is a bit much for smaller kids.the action is incredible in this one.the first part was a indt film.this one cost 80 million dollars and made 78 million in its first weekend.it is the best of the 3 id say.if you are squeamish,you might want to go see bambi instead.belive it or not,its even emotional in a spot or 2.sara isnt a tenny bopper in this one but a dykey rambo bitch.her shrink isnt around long,but while he is,he is very obnoxious.of course he lived.it seems the guy in any movie who really needs killed,never gets it.sara deserved an award for this one.she did an awesome job playing a psycho with a lot on her mind.the message is no fate but what we make.in part 3 youll see that just isnt true,but i alredy knew that.intensity galore!sara plays a very intense character.all the action,the nukes,it freakin rocks!this is arnolds best!the special effects kick ass too.they made a 3rd.im hoping for a 4th also.but since it takes 10 years for another sequel,id better not hold my breath.and,by the way,who cares if arnolds to old.cant they find another musclehead to play some sort of new terminater?its do-able.we know it.hollywood knows it.so get off your lazy asses and make it already.i belive its about time for the big showdown between machine and man.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Epitome of Action Films
We are all too familiar with the story of this movie, so I will spare you the details. "The Terminator" was a sleeper sci-fi hit that was a rarity in its genre. Movie-goers were beginning to see sci-fi films that rose above others in the genre and even other genres. "Alien", "Blade Runner", "Star Wars", and, the film that started the revolution, "2001: A Space Odyessy". What made "Terminator" so different was not just another bleak view of the future, but a tense, edgy thriller with some damn fine writing. But while it took an effort to make films like those, it took a greater one to make a sequel. "Aliens", "The Empire Strikes Back", and very few others accomplished this task successfully. As for "T2", unless you've been living under a rock, we all know how well it did. This is definitely the best of the series (in my opinion at least) and definitely one of the best action movies to grace the face of our planet. This is the movie that also started the trend of making action movies with ridiculously huge budgets and paying action stars ridiculously huge salaries. But T2 delivers, with a great story, stunning visuals, and Schwarzenegger in his prime. Plus who can forget Brad Fiedel's synthetic score which has been parodied numerous times?
Why another DVD though? This film has been put on DVD almost as many times as "Independence Day". Special features are somewhat reserved here, so what justifies another release? DVD producer Van Ling answers the question in a quaint little insert about how new technology has developed since the last T2 transfer. They can now present T2 the way it should be, digitally mastered from a 1080p, 24sf digital telecline transfer for "superior video and audio quality". This release of T2 is aimed toward the home theater crowd. All that confusing talk means that the picture is presented with more clarity.
And the sound is just awesome. The DTS track has been dropped from the "Ultimate Edition" in exchange for a Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround EX track and a Dolby headphone track. If you have the technology, try to watch a DVD with a DTS track whenever possible. In the case of this DVD, there's only the Dolby 5.1 EX track. But the track on this "Extreme DVD" defies both the Dolby and DTS tracks from the "Ultimate Edition". It takes full advantage of a dimensional sound field.
The goodies here are minimal; a SFX documentary, a behind the scenes montage, and a few DVD-ROM goodies that I didn't bother to try. But there is the original version of the film available to Windows Media Player 9 users on the second disc. You can watch it on the first disc as well, it's disguised as an easter egg. On the main menu of Disc 1, hit the right button five times while highlighting "Play Extended Version". There's also an enhanced mode with behind the scnes and there's a spankin new commentary by James Cameron himself.
But the question remains; is this DVD worth buying? It really boils down to what your reasons are for buying this new DVD. If you don't own the film, yes. If you're troubled by the mediocre video quality of either of the first two releases, then yes. If you want Cameron's commentary and other new supplements, yes. And if you want to playback T2 in HD on your PC (and even if you find that your computer equipment is currently insufficient for HD playback), yes. But if you want extensive behind the scenes, you might want to stick with your "Ultimate Edition". This "Extreme Edition" delivers though, despite falling short in the behind the scenes section.

5-0 out of 5 stars awesome
okay. I just saw this movie and its the best movie ever made and james cameron is the best director ever.Now lately I keep reading all this comotion between the extreme version and the ultimate version. Well i'd pick the extreme. The reason I didnt pick the ultimate is because even though it has great quality its probley nothing close to the picture and sound on the extreme version. I also didnt pick it because its to hard to find. I picked extreme for many reasons. Lets start with the picture and sound its awesome nothing else to say. It also has an also metal case that I heard ruins the dvd inside it but still its awesome. Now as a previous reviewer said extreme dosent have the special extended edition well I dont really care {no offence to the previous reviewer who wrote that} because it only has 2 minutes of more footage {litterly} I think the scene of the t-1000 searching johns room is cool and I wouldent mind that in the movie but the special extended edition ruins the ending with a new "happy ending". Be warned its ruins the ending to the best movie ever. Even though the origian ending on the special edition is good enough. People say that the new happy ending stops a sequel. But see I dont really want to see t3 because it should have ended with t2. and finally yes i'll admit ultimate has more bonus footage extreme has a very godd amount of features as well and extreme is for the great price (...). I have nothing else to say. ... Read more


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