The Stuntman DVD-Terrific!

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Rich Howard, Nov 19, 2001.

  1. Rich Howard

    Rich Howard Auditioning

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    I received "The Stuntman" DVD on Saturday and I've watched the film twice now and the documentary once. The disc was a recommendation from a friend of mine who is a real film buff and he was right - I loved it! Peter O'Toole, one of my favorite actors, is simply brilliant as a maniacal film director and the in-jokes about Hollywood are a riot.
    Included with the disc is a very entertaining documentary, "The Sinister Saga of the Making of the Stuntman". It is very long (114 minutes according to the disc), but it has some great insight into the art and business of filmmaking. The film's director, Richard Rush, actually tells the story himself during the documentary and it includes interviews with most of the cast and crew, including a relatively new interview with Peter O'Toole. I bought Lawrence of Arabia a few weeks back and the documentary included an interview that was over 10 years old.
    I heard on DVD File (www.dvdfile.com) that Mr. Rush is signing copies of the DVD at Dave's Video in Studio City, CA. tomorrow. Are any California forum members going?
     
  2. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
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    I watched this disc yesterday as well as the first 30 minutes or so of the documentary. This was a title that I have been looking to get in a remastered form for so long that it was sad. THX had it on their list of upcoming laserdiscs throughout most of the mid to late 90s, but it never came to pass.

    This new transfer is a big improvement over previous video versions. The opening shots had me worried because the whole credits sequence looks pretty poor with excessive grain, but as soon as they are over, the image makes a quantum improvement - sporting only the relatively mild but noticeable grain that one would expect from a film of its budget and time, and a much more stable image than has ever appeared on home video.

    The documentary looks very strange. It is staged so strangely and features so many cheap video effects that one can't help thinking "Community access cable" while watching it. On the other hand, the story of how the film was made and released is an interesting one, and there is a weird fascination in seeing a director who is so consumed by a single work in his lifetime. This "stare at the train-wreck" fascination helps to make the self-congratulatory tone a little easier to sit-through. Rush clearly sees the Stunt Man as his "Citizen Kane" even if no-one else does.

    This has been a great year for fans of Peter O'Toole. Four of his seminal film performances have been given good to great SE treatment on DVD (Lawrence of Arabia, The Lion in Winter, The Ruling Class, and The Stunt Man). Of these, Lawrence was the only one that had really been done justice on laserdisc. Now if someone could get cracking on My Favorite Year and Becket, I'll be all set!

    Regards,
     
  3. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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  4. Jeff Swindoll

    Jeff Swindoll Supporting Actor

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    Consider me a cultist [​IMG]. I've been awaiting the Stunt Man since my LD days. Tis a pity that AB couldnt secure the rights and included a CD of the fab soundtrack. Wonderful flick. Cheers.
     
  5. John P Grosskopf

    John P Grosskopf Second Unit

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  6. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    This is probably a stupid and pointless question, since I doubt anyone knows, but I'm going to go ahead and ask it anyway.

    Since this is a title I want to pick up and I'm currently broke, I'm wondering if anyone knows just how truly "limited" the "Limited Edition" is going to be.
     
  7. Jeff Swindoll

    Jeff Swindoll Supporting Actor

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    From www.anchorbayentertainment.com
     
  8. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
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    Rain,

    The Stunt Man Limited Edition is being produced in a run of "only" 100,000 units. I have a feeling they will be around well into the new year. Also, there isn't really much advantage besides $5 in total MSRP to buying the SE versus the separate releases of the film and "Sinister Saga" documentary. Even from a packaging standpoint, all they did was stick the inserts from the two individual releases into the double Amaray case for the LE.

    Regards,
     
  9. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    Thanks, guys.

    Still, it would be nice to have them in one neat little package.
     
  10. Ken Seeber

    Ken Seeber Supporting Actor

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    You certainly can't beat the price that Deep Discount DVD was selling the LE for: $21 shipped. They shipped last week and it was in my mail box this afternoon!
     
  11. Steve_Ch

    Steve_Ch Supporting Actor

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    >>You certainly can't beat the price that Deep Discount DVD was selling the LE for: $21 shipped.
     
  12. DannyS

    DannyS Second Unit

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    I'd Never heard of this movie. I love Peter O Toole (met him on a train station once, just a glance, and a knowing nod!)

    AAAAAnnnnyway. WOW!! The movie rocked! One mad, weird piece of mastery. And the docco! Rush is one hell of a character! The Docco made me love the movie even more! No one I know has heard of this film! This is a tragedy, and for now, I'm the only person I know in a Town that's just become a city who loves THE STUNT MAN.

    BUY THIS NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  13. David Glenn

    David Glenn Second Unit

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    .
     
  14. Stu Rosen

    Stu Rosen Second Unit

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    My own personal history with this film goes back to when I was reviewing films for my college paper, and went to a press screening of the film. I loved it. I watched it on videotape years ago again, and loved it again.

    The very very odd thing is, I bought the deluxe DVD, cracked it open, put the film on and, well, I have to say that I don't think it's aged very well. I don't know if it's a slightly anachronistic tone, or have seen Peter O'Toole do a much better job devouring the scenery in My Favorite Year, or the fact that Steve Railsback is an extremely creepy screen presence, but I could care less if I saw the film ever again, much less the documentary.

    It's funny (and this is obviously personal) how some fond memories might do better to remain memories...
     
  15. Mike Graham

    Mike Graham Supporting Actor

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    I gotta say I heard so much good buzz about this DVD as it was coming out that I decided to buy it sight unseen, as I really like small cult films.

    However, I gotta say the movie wasn't really that entertainig as I figured it would be. Any scene with Peter O'Toole is exceptionally entertaining, and the funky score is very cool. The stunts performed really are quite effective, as you're always wondering whether or not Cameron is going to make out alive.

    But overall, I can understand why this film fell into obscurity: its just so off beat all the time - such as when Cameron finally reveals why he's running from the police; at first its played as a heart breaking scene, but the other character's reaction is so offbeat that it really changes what you think the scene was about. After seeing it twice in the past two months, I still don't get it!

    Also, even though the documentary is well over 100 minutes long, it could have been effectively cut down to 45. Rush uses all these incredibly silly effects that look so ridiculous that they make you wonder just how terrible this documentary can get. Plus, he seems to constantly bombard the viewer with critical acclaim for the movie. Come on, we get it, critics liked it, just stop and tell us some more info! Truthfully, he does give out interesting tidbits through the film, such as the fact FOX leased an abandoned theater to present "The Stunt Man" for Oscar consideration; the documentary also includes some nice interviews with O'Toole, Railsback and Hershey, that seem like they could have made interesting segments by themselves.

    In the end, I think my own expectations really ruined the film for me, as I was probably expecting too much beforehand. Just my two cents.
     
  16. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Producer

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  17. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
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    My original take on the documentary when asked to describe it was that it had a definite "community access cable" look to it. The combination of a "very 70s" looking film and a "very 80s" (think early MTV) looking documentary was kind of interesting. [​IMG]
    I love this film, but it is always better the first time you see it. My first reaction on seeing any of the deleted scenes (one of which is exclusive to the documentary) was "Thank the heavens that they were deleted".
    Regards,
     
  18. Felix Martinez

    Felix Martinez Screenwriter

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    I love, love, love this movie (Ebert, anyone?)! Loved it in the Fall of 1981, when I saw it on ON TV (a pay channel at the time) as a 13 year old kid, and love it even more now.

    The Stunt Man does to "point of view" (which we take for granted in our daily lives and blindly accept) what Memento does to "factual info" (which we take for granted in our daily lives and blindly accept).

    No one has commented on the DVD-ROM material on the first disc - Rush's script notes, etc. - a must read!! Will tell you much about the subtext of the film, which most folks do not see (but is there).

    Cheers,

    Felix
     
  19. Greg_Y

    Greg_Y Screenwriter

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    The members of the HTF have given me so many recommendations over the years about quality films that I would never otherwise see. This was not one of them. [​IMG]
    The costuming, the way the film was shot and the dialogue made me think I was watching a really long episode of Hart to Hart without the character of Max.
     
  20. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    Wow. I don't know what to say about those of you who didn't like this film. Are you missing something?
    I feel like I must have seen a different movie than the one you guys are talking about. I found the film fascinating in the way it plays with your perceptions. I absolutely agree with Felix 100%. Great, great movie. [​IMG]
    As to the costuming, come on, people. It was the end of the 70s. This has pretty much nothing to do with what the movie was trying to achieve.
    As to the way it was shot, I found it rather plain and very clean looking, with little in the way of unusual lighting effects or framing choices. But for a film like this, that is exactly as it should be. To put it another way, the cinematography, unlike in some other films, does not attempt to convey too much in terms of mood or theme...that is left up to the action taking place, which I think is rather the point.
     

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