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WARNER

MOVIE INFO

Director:
Various
Cast:
Various
Writing Credits:
Various

Synopsis:
Includes the films The Jazz Singer (1927), Broadway Melody of 1929, 42nd Street (1933), The Great Ziegfeld, (1936), The Wizard Of Oz (1939), Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942), An American in Paris (1951), Show Boat (1951), Singin' In The Rain (1952), Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954), A Star Is Born (1954), The Music Man (1962), Viva Las Vegas (1964), Camelot (1967), Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (1971), Cabaret (1972), That's Entertainment (1974), Victor, Victoria (1983), Little Shop Of Horrors (1986) and Hairspray (1988).

MPAA:
Rated NA

DVD DETAILS
Presentation:
Aspect Ratio: Various
Audio:
Various
Subtitles:
Various
Closed-captioned


See individual reviews for additional specs on the collection.


Price: $98.92
Release Date: 2/12/2012

Bonus:
• See individual reviews for additional specs on the collection.


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Best of Warner Bros: 20 Film Collection - Musicals (2013)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (February 25, 2013)

Warner Bros. wants to pull out many stops to celebrate their 90th anniversary, so expect plenty of retrospective releases. As part of these, we get a multiple-DVD set awkwardly called “Best of Warner Bros. 20 Film Collection Musicals”.

As expected, this provides 20 musicals from a span of over 80 years. I’ll look at each with a short synopsis and a link to individual reviews when available.

THE JAZZ SINGER: " The lack of depth kills Jazz, as it leaves us without much of interest. Instead, the film depends on its auditory gimmick to maintain our attention. This clearly worked 85 years ago, but I don’t see how it could succeed today. Sappy and sentimental, The Jazz Singer doesn’t do much to entertain.”

(Note that this “20 Film Collection” only includes Disc One of the above-linked DVD set.)

THE BROADWAY MELODY: "The Broadway Melody features awkward staging, slow pacing, and choppy editing. We see plenty of odd one-shots of characters as they stand still and look at nothing in particular. In addition, it just dragged on and on. It feels much longer than its 100 minutes, as the lack of interesting characters or intriguing story makes it plod. Melody ends up as a tepid love triangle with no redeeming value.”

42nd STREET: Not reviewed.

THE GREAT ZIEGFELD: “The Great Ziegfeld seems somewhat too insubstantial and awkwardly constructed to qualify as a really great film. Nonetheless, the picture comes long on spectacle and comedy, and it moves more quickly than one might expect of such a long piece. Generally light and clever, it offers a surprisingly entertaining affair that mostly works swimmingly.”

THE WIZARD OF OZ: “The AFI picked The Wizard Of Oz as the best children's movie of all-time for a good reason. It's a terrific piece of work that remains as entertaining now as it did more than 70 years ago.”

(Note that this “20 Film Collection” only includes Disc One of the above-linked DVD set.)

YANKEE DOODLE DANDY: “Yankee Doodle Dandy provided a nicely light and plucky film that seemed gleefully irreverent much of the time. It never appeared afraid to make Cohan look like a boob, though it always did so in a comedic and affectionate way. Does it represent a clear and accurate biography of the composer and performer? God, no; this is clearly a fantasy version of his life. But with results that seem so much fun, who cares?”

(Note that this “20 Film Collection” only includes Disc One of the above-linked DVD set.)

AN AMERICAN IN PARIS: “An American In Paris had some promise to provide some pleasures to even a dedicated musical-hater like myself, but the fun doesn't last. Despite a generally good cast and some interesting moments, an ordinary plot and an unattractive leading lady hamper the film. Only the ever-present charm of Gene Kelly got me to the end of this one.”

(Note that this “20 Film Collection” only includes Disc One of the above-linked DVD set.)

SHOW BOAT: Not reviewed.

SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN: “I still really like Singin' In the Rain, as it remains bright and perky after 60 years. Even if you detest musicals, this one's worth a look; it won't persuade you to embrace the genre, but you'll like it anyway.”

(Note that this “20 Film Collection” only includes Disc One of the above-linked DVD set.)

SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS: Not reviewed.

A STAR IS BORN (1954): “As a dramatic film, A Star Is Born has a lot of strengths, mainly due to its compelling story and excellent cast. However, it comes burdened with too many tangential musical numbers and a ridiculously inflated running time that make it really drag.”

(Note that the review above goes to the Blu-ray version of the film. The “20 Musicals” edition lacks any of that set’s bonus features.)

THE MUSIC MAN: Not reviewed.

VIVA LAS VEGAS: Not reviewed.

CAMELOT: " One good lead performance among three can’t save a movie, and there’s not much else about Camelot to make it entertaining. Too long, too slow and too darned lethargic, the film takes a classic legend and turns it into just another weepy romance.”

(Note that the review above goes to the Blu-ray version of the film. The “20 Musicals” edition includes all of the Blu-ray’s disc-based extras except for the audio commentary.)

WILLY WONKA AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY: “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory remains a winner of a movie. It's aged quite well and it shows no signs of losing appeal to both kids and adults.”

CABARET: “Maybe there’s depth to Cabaret that I missed, and maybe if I see it again, I’ll take greater pleasure from it. Right now, unfortunately, I find it to be a big old bore. It presents some clever and well-staged production numbers, but when it focuses on characters and story, it goes nowhere.”

THAT’S ENTERTAINMENT: Not reviewed.

VICTOR/VICTORIA: Not reviewed.

LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS (1986): “I think Little Shop of Horrors works well as a whole. It packages a good mix of comedy and music with an unusual story. It’s not a classic but it’s an engagingly odd piece of entertainment.”

(Note that the review above goes to the Blu-ray version of the film. From 2002, the “20 Musicals” edition includes most of that set’s extras but lacks the extended Director’s Cut and anything connected to that subject.)

HAIRSPRAY (2007): Not reviewed.

For fans who want to amass an array of classic musicals all in one fell swoop, “Best of Warner Bros. 20 Film Collection Musicals” provides a good way to do so. With a list price under $100, you’ll average less than $5 a movie. I think this offers a quality package for those who desire an instant library of musicals.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 2
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