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Basic [DVD] [2003] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

John Travolta , Samuel L. Jackson , John McTiernan    DVD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)

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Region 1 encoding (requires a North American or multi-region DVD player and NTSC compatible TV. More about DVD formats.)

Note: you may purchase only one copy of this product. New Region 1 DVDs are dispatched from the USA or Canada and you may be required to pay import duties and taxes on them (click here for details). Please expect a delivery time of 5-7 days.


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Product details

  • Actors: John Travolta, Samuel L. Jackson, Connie Nielsen, Tim Daly, Giovanni Ribisi
  • Directors: John McTiernan
  • Writers: James Vanderbilt
  • Producers: Andy Given, Anson Downes, Arnold Messer, Basil Iwanyk, Brad Fischer
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Colour, Dolby, Dubbed, DVD-Video, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English, French
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: R (Restricted) (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: 8 July 2003
  • Run Time: 98 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00009L1TA
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 190,199 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



Basic is a military mystery that offers multi-layered deception as its dramatic raison d'etre, but with plenty of machismo attitude as befitting a semi-effective thriller from Die Hard director John McTiernan. John Travolta stars as an ex-Army Ranger-turned-DEA agent, recruited by an Army investigator (Connie Nielsen) to solve the fratricide of a reviled Sergeant (Samuel L Jackson) who was allegedly killed while commanding a Special Forces training mission in the hurricane-swept rainforests of Panama. Two survivors (Giovanni Ribisi in a showboat role and Brian Van Holt) recall the ill-fated mission as the truth unfolds, Rashomon-style, in a series of repetitive flashbacks. Tricky enough to hold one's attention as it grows increasingly irrelevant, Basic is so enamoured of its bogus ingenuity that its ultimate twist is a letdown. A second viewing might prove rewarding, if only to confirm that it all holds together. --Jeff Shannon

Product Description

DVD Columbia, TriStar, Region 2 PAL 2003 99 mins

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars 2 Parts Perfection... 1 Part Disappointment. 26 Aug 2014
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
During the first hour of this movie you will be wondering how you never hear people talk about it. It will have you hooked from the opening scene. If I was reviewing the first hour it would get 6 stars out of 5. The tension is built skillfully and the pacing is perfect. So many questions you want answers to. But unfortunately, the joke that is the final third of this film is just disappointing. Actually I was quite angry. I thought I had discovered a gem and it turned out to be a fake. There is a clear point where the movie seems to change completely. Turns out the original script had been changed which I discovered in a very good featurette included on the DVD.

It's almost worth a watch just for the first hour but I just want to warn you, you may be disappointed and feel you wasted your time and money. I have shown this movie to film study friends just to see their reaction, so it is good for a discussion.

Travolta, Gio Ribishi and Sam Jackson do put in quite good performances.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
There is nothing basic about Basic. I thought this movie was superb; maybe I'm easier to please than a lot of the people who criticize the script because I found this to be one of the most intelligent, mesmerizing, blow-your-mind movies I've ever seen. It's a rare treat to find a movie that is not completely predictable these days, and Basic takes unpredictability and surprise to unheard of levels. There was one small aspect of the saga I successfully predicted early on, but the rest of the twists and turns this movie takes had me doing mental gymnastics. Every time you start to think you've seen at least a shadow of the light, this movie rips the rug back out from under you and plunges you into even darker depths of confusion and doubt. Best of all, this elaborate plot actually holds together, which is really just amazing. Basic is a movie that makes you think, and I have no problem admitting that I was often at a loss as to what was really going on; Basic did not insult my intelligence in any way shape or form; it challenged it constantly and delightfully humbled me in the process.
At the center of the story is a Special Forces training mission that goes horribly awry. Only two of six soldiers make it out of the Panamanian jungle, one of whom is injured and the other of whom isn't talking. The base commander Styles (Timothy Daly) calls in his old buddy Hardy (John Travolta) to interrogate the witness because he feels the job is over the head of Army investigator Osborne (Connie Nielsen). Before the feds get involved, Styles wants to know why the unit leader Sgt. West (Samuel L. Jackson) and four soldiers are lying dead somewhere out in the jungle. Hardy is a former Ranger who served under and hated West, but he is now an agent with the Drug Enforcement Agency.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dark and twisty 28 Feb 2005
By Amanda Richards VINE VOICE
Twist-wise this is a heckuvagreat movie. It's a steaming, down and dirty whodunnit-to-who under the guise of an army training exercise gone wrong. A Special Force team goes into the jungles of Panama, under the supervision of Samuel L. Jackson (West,) but they don't all come out. The onus of finding out what happened falls on Connie Nielsen (Osborne), but then Tim Daly (Styles) brings in John Travolta (Hardy) to take over the investigation.
It's not Travolta's best role, but he does a passable Hardy, the great inquisitor. Connie Nielsen steals most of the movie, even though her accent grates on the nerves sometimes, but otherwise she's got what it takes. Timothy Daly is good for most of the movie (until the end), and there just isn't enough Samuel L. Jackson to go around.
Poor Giovanni Ribisi - he must be really tired of being type-cast by now. He plays the same role, once again, for the umpteenth time.
My problem with the movie is that a lot of the scenes are shot out of focus and in the dark - so it's hard to figure out who's doing what to whom most of the time. (My copy didn't have sub-titles, and the close-captioning was pathetic, so that didn't help much)
Any attempt to summarize the plot would contain spoilers, so I won't. Spending a few hours on this 3.5 star movie, wouldn't be time wasted.
Amanda Richards
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3.0 out of 5 stars Let's Twist Again 2 Sep 2012
John Travolta as a top military interrogator may seem an unlikely role; and this film does nothing to dispel that view. However, the story of six Rangers in the Darien Perninsula led by a psycho NCO is sufficiently twisty to appeal to the Usual Suspects fan. The interrogations seemed to be forgotten as everyone suddenly coughed the clues (in one case literally) in the best Hercule Poirot fashion. You are unlikely to watch it twice.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable 23 Jan 2004
By A Customer
Having just seen this movie on DVD I have to say that it was an enjoyable movie. Some great twists and turns. Travolta was great in his role as hardy and samuel Jackson was also outstanding in his role as west.
Although the story line was at times a little bit difficult to follow I would have to say that this is a good film if only for the reason of the two lead actors back together after pulp fiction.
I would say to all of you watch this one.. as it keep you interested all the way in the end where the real story becomes really clear.
i would give this out 7 of 10 as a rating.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
good movie
Published 1 month ago by henryone
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent delivery service
Fair price;excellent delivery service.:-) G.J.K.
Published 1 month ago by Mr. K.
4.0 out of 5 stars was very good film.
had to but to see end, started watching late tv, fell asleep, so had to get it, was very good film.
Published 1 month ago by dee pawelski
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
Very good quality, excellent would recommend it to friends and family. We really enjoyed it was wonderful. Just what we needed.
Published 6 months ago by Zola Kyele
5.0 out of 5 stars Great twist
Saw this film on TV and had to get a copy to keep! Excellent cast make this a high octane action thriller. Good for a fun night in
Published 13 months ago by Michael
4.0 out of 5 stars Basic
This is an action packed movie with a few twists threw in to keep you on the edge of your seat. A classic performance by both Travolta and Jackson.. Well worth a watch.
Published 16 months ago by Lisa Marie Kennedy
5.0 out of 5 stars Basic DVD
Really good film with strong, good actors. It is an action film with a twist. Probably enjoyable by most ages over 13.
Published 17 months ago by Laws
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Under-rated Film
Will not elude to the plot as other reviewers have mentioned there are plenty twists - don't want to spoil it! John Travolta is superb. Read more
Published 23 months ago by V. Dixon
4.0 out of 5 stars Military mystery thriller
A US Army base in Panama is the setting for Basic. As a a training mission for recruits who want to be US Rangers goes awry, with the death of some of them, including the feared &... Read more
Published on 24 Aug 2012 by Jules
2.0 out of 5 stars No action
i wonder this film why its says non stop action on back dvd cover but its not its all about suspense this movie basic more like basic movie dont waste your money on this film its... Read more
Published on 28 July 2012 by shabz
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