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Barney's Version [DVD]

Paul Giamatti , Rosamund Pike , Richard J. Lewis    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
Price: 4.90 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Barney's Version [DVD] + American Splendor [DVD] [2004] + Sideways [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Paul Giamatti, Rosamund Pike, Jake Hoffman, Dustin Hoffman, Minnie Driver
  • Directors: Richard J. Lewis
  • Format: PAL
  • Subtitles: English
  • Dubbed: None
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Audio Description: None
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Universal Pictures UK
  • DVD Release Date: 23 May 2011
  • Run Time: 132 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004G5Z0E6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,371 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



The publication of a book accusing him of murder leads schlock television producer Barney Panofsky (Paul Giamatti) to reflect on his tumultuous life--from his troubled first marriage to his best friend sleeping with his second wife to his one true love… and how he destroyed the happiest time in his life. By turns comic and self-lacerating, Panofsky is a richly drawn character given vivid life by Giamatti, who's built a remarkable career on prickly people (Sideways, American Splendor, John Adams). Regrettably, the women in his life aren't as fully realized, but the strong performances from the actresses playing them (Rachelle Lefevre, Minnie Driver, and Rosamund Pike) do a lot to make up for the thinness of how they're written. Rounding out the cast is Dustin Hoffman as Panofsky's father, a crude but vigorous ex-cop who loves his son unreservedly. Adapted from an award-winning Canadian book, Barney's Version feels, in the best sense, like a novel; small details and incidents build up to the picture of a man's life. The movie depicts that life without judgment, never manipulating the audience for cheap laughs or sentiment--and yet it is by turns wildly funny and achingly sad, largely due to Giamatti. He holds the viewer's attention effortlessly, quietly, never showboating his emotions or flaunting his intelligence. He's simply a superb actor, and this is a superb performance. --Bret Fetzer

Product Description

Academy Award® nominated Barney’s Version is a warm and witty story documenting the extraordinary life of seemingly ordinary Barney Panofsky. With a stellar cast including a Golden Globe® winning performance from Paul Giamatti as Barney (Sideways, Cinderella Man), Dustin Hoffman (Meet The Fockers, I Heart Huckabees), Minnie Driver (The the Phantom of The Opera, Good Will Hunting) and Rosamund Pike (Made in Dagenham, An Education), Barney’s Version is set across two continents and spans three decades. Take a flashback journey through the different stages of Barney’s unusual life.

Barney’s Version begins in Rome where Barney meets and marries first wife Clara (Rachelle Lefevre; New Moon, Twilight) a fiery and flame-haired free spirit until he discovers her infidelity with one of his close friends. Encouraged by his father and close confidante (Hoffman), his second shot at marriage sees Barney wed a wealthy Jewish heiress (Driver) who barely notices him switch off whenever she talks. Ironically it is at their wedding Barney meets the third ‘Mrs’ P, Miriam (Pike) who turns out to be his true love and mother to his two children. At times a true romantic, performing acts of gallantry, generosity and goodwill, often when he least expects it; other times acting jealous and wallowing in self pity, Barney certainly lives a packed life, making him an unlikely and captivating hero. An emotional, heartfelt comedy portraying the depths one will go to for love; sometimes getting it right, other times getting it wildly wrong, Barney’s Version is a must see.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Bent over backwards in love, heels over head" 7 May 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Barney Panofsky is a financially successful, chubby, cigar-puffing drunkard. He also happens to be a true romantic, dedicated father and husband. Paul Giamatti applies his trademark soulful nuance and facial artistry to glorious effect and superior performances are given all around: Rosamund Pike as Miriam is pure elegance. Scott Speedman's charming, addict artist "Boogie" steals several scenes and Dustin Hoffman plays the dad, Izzy Panofsky, like a mensch, of course. Blonde beauty Rachel Lefevere gives a short & sweet contribution and Minnie Driver nails her rich Jewish girl accent.

The mood morphs from fairly light-hearted early on to deeply moving bummer-ville towards the end but, thankfully, it's an uplifting, meaningful despair. Oscar or not, BARNEY'S VERSION is an all-time gem and ultimate cinematic commiseration
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Small Epic 17 April 2012
I didn't think such films were being made any more. A broad sweeping, personal and ultimately very watchable portrait of a man's life in all it's triumph and tragedy, taking place over a number of decades. It's full of humour, humanity, tenderness, conflict and love with some fine acting including a very memorable and enjoyable performance from Dustin Hoffman.

I knew nothing of it when i started watching and didn't know what to expect, maybe a one man 'Sideways' of sorts. But this is something grander and more ambitious in the fact it covers a lot of ground over many years and still finds time to explore and express plenty of depth and character. It's hard to do this kind of film well but it achieves it's aims comfortably with grace and spark.

Thank god they still make films for adults.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Sounding not unlike a child's software program - "Barney's Version" is a terrible name for a film and nearly put me off renting this 'journey' movie - I'm glad it didn't.

Produced by Robert Lantos and Directed by Richard Lewis, the screenplay by Michael Konyves is adapted from Mordecai Richler's 1997 book of the same name. Across 30 eventful years, it tells the story of Barney Panofsky - a Monte Cristo smoking, whiskey guzzling chubby man living in Montreal. Barney is the TV Producing equivalent of "Gregory House" - irascible and loveable at the same time. Like his Dad Izzy Panofsky (a scene-stealing Dustin Hoffman) Barney tells it as it is - loves women impulsively - is headstrong in everything he does but has his heart in the right place. But he has a fatal flaw. It isn't that Barney is deliberately cruel or mean, he just keeps on making terrible mistakes over and over again (most of which are of his own making) and learns rather painfully as the years pass and happiness fades that the enemy is not others but 'himself'.

It begins in Rome in 1974 when we're introduced to his motley crew of dead-beat friends - there's Thomas Trabacchi as Leo Fasoli - an Italian artistic genius who has yet to find an appreciative audience, a black friend who does a terrible deed on Barney (he later forgives this) and his best-friend - Boogie. Young, cocky, handsome and fancy-free - Boogie is a full-on babe magnet (played beautifully by Scott Speedman) who can't seem to finish his brilliant first novel as he systematically hoovers up every narcotic he can get his sweaty hands on.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top 10 films this year 28 July 2011
This will not be to everyone's taste - it's not a blockbuster like the Adjustment Bureau. But it does not matter - what it does, it does beautifully on its own terms. It captures what few films can - a story of a life that resonates on so many levels. Is it a story about love - and following it wherever it leads because that is the most important thing for all of us, so hard to find and so easy to lose. Is it about how hard it is to know anyone else - and all the jumbles and misunderstandings that come from that - the muddles that make and break human lives. Is it about living, really living and dieing too and being able to count your friends on one hand. Maybe alittle of all three. The performances are extraordinary; maybe he isn'y so liekable - he's not a Tom Cruise cut out. But he's real, and you do care - and it makes you think about how precious life and love are - and we must not any of us waste a minute. If the film catches you at the right time it will make a difference, and, if not, it's one to store for later, because its time will surely come. Very special.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie 22 Feb 2013
By Patosan
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
Excellent acting by a good cast. I love the wit, the cleverness of the discussion, of the situation. very well done - I laugh to the floor, but then cried discretely. Highly recommended !
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars thoroughly recommended 17 April 2012
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this film. It's one man's life story told from his viewpoint but seen generally so you can see how others in his life think about him. Great performance by Dustin Hoffman as the father.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars movie like they use to make 3d ! 21 Oct 2011
acting production directing top rate best movie i have seen this year ! paul giamati at his best and no its not in 3d
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent film - tragic and humorous! 2 Jun 2011
One of the best kooky indie dramas I've seen in ages. Similar to 'City Island' and '500 Days of Summer' but more grown up. A tragic film starring Paul Giamatti as the title character who rightly deserved his Golden Globe 2011 award for his role in this film. It's a not so typical 'dramedy' with unexpected shocking moments popping out at you and mysteries to figure out. You come to be Barney; you hate the people he hates and you too get obsessed with his obsessions. A very emotional unique film that will leave you teary and laughing. Great film 8/10.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars comparing to the book, disappoinment
much worse than the marvellous book
Published 3 days ago by Lucie Novak
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie
Seen a few years ago at cinema. A moving story and great performances. Barney is a somewhat self-centred needy character
Published 2 months ago by Belpop
3.0 out of 5 stars Good cast, but slightly off putting
First of all, the casts are all brilliant, and each character is really convincing. The class distinction within the Jewish society in Canada/USA that this film shows is an... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Marco Rossini
4.0 out of 5 stars Traumatising the Rabbi's wife...
Take a ride through the life and memories of Barney Panofsky, a hard-drinking, cigar-smoking, foulmouthed 65-year old hockey fanatic and television producer. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Mr. Corey S. Newcombe
4.0 out of 5 stars A film you need to stick with through the first half an hour
I was all set to give up on this film after the first 20 mins or so. I found the lead character rather annoying to tell the truth. Read more
Published 6 months ago by J. R. Rees
5.0 out of 5 stars What an outstanding movie!
I knew he will be good! I always liked him. But his performance made me speechless - which is very uncharacteristic from me. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Veronika
4.0 out of 5 stars Funny and moving
Starting off with comedy during Barney's youth, it moves through his time back in Montreal as a young man through to his old age. Funny at times but moving too. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Alan J
2.0 out of 5 stars not good
I only bought this film as I am a fan of Dustin Hoffman and have a collection of almost all of his films to date. Read more
Published 12 months ago by merlin
5.0 out of 5 stars Barney
What a great movie story with powerful acting ,and is one of my top ten movies ,it highlighted the case of Alzheimer's disease
Published 12 months ago by william ronaldsmith
1.0 out of 5 stars Awesome FIlm - Technical Comment
The other reviews covers how fantastic this little gem of a film are, so I will stick to the technical aspect. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Morten Stjernholm
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