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Big Kahuna [DVD] [1999] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]


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

  • Actors: Kevin Spacey, Danny DeVito, Peter Facinelli, Paul Dawson, Christopher Donahue
  • Directors: John Swanbeck
  • Writers: Roger Rueff
  • Producers: Kevin Spacey, Andrew Stevens, Barbara A. Hall, Bernie Morris, Elie Samaha
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Colour, Dolby, DVD-Video, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: R (Restricted) (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Universal Studios
  • DVD Release Date: 29 Aug 2000
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00003CXIM
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 263,120 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Bates on 21 July 2009
Format: DVD
Bob, Larry, and Phil.

Shot essentially in one hotel room, this film very much like the play. The question it asks, among others, is "What is character?"

Young Bob, full of religion and purposeful sincerity, thinks Larry is a shallow marketing shill. Larry thinks Bob is the insincere one: We're all marketing something. Broken Phil thinks... and answers the question about character.

It's not Shakespeare, but still has space enough to make you think too.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Rottweiller Swinburne on 14 Jun 2012
Format: DVD
First observation; this film is titled "The Big Kahuna" - "Kahuna" is a Hawaiian word meaning hierophant or expert in any given field. As far as I can tell, however, the Kahuna in question, a big businessman from whom the three protagonists want to secure a lucrative contract, is always referred to (by Larry - he is the only one who uses the term) as "The Great Kahuna", never the "Big". I wonder if there's any significance in this?

Plot - Larry (Kevin Spacey), Phil (Danny de Vito) and Bob (Peter Facinelli) are three salesmen sent to a business convention in order to snare a big contract for their company, which produces industrial lubricants, from a potential client, the Kahuna in question. Phil has been assured that the Kahuna in question will be at the convention, but he doesn't materialise. Larry, the motormouth of the three, is furious and blames Phil for the no-show, though Phil bears no blame for it (Larry is very keen on blaming others for everything, but never takes responsibility for anything himself). It then conspires, after the convention has finished and all three of them are sat around, dispirited, in their miserable hotel room, that Bob had been talking to the Big K all along - the Big K was there incognito, not wanting to be bothered by salesman trying to force a sale on him (though this begs the question of why he was at a sales convention in the first place if he felt like that). Larry and Phil make Bob go after the Big K and try to talk him into a deal - Bob goes, but returns empty-handed, having been unable to bring himself to pollute his friendship with the Big K by bringing Mammon into it. Larry blows his top, Bob and he have a brief fight which Bob wins. They all go home after some superficial, cod-moralising about integrity and what it means to be a Man.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Carlos Vazquez Quintana on 11 Feb 2004
Format: DVD
Life can be bad, good or indifferent. It's only as you look at it.In this film life it represented by business or sales, and for sale you need the big client, in this case, the Big Kahuna. At an hotel are also three salesmen, people many of us thinks are worrying and superficial. But they go to demonstrate they are more than these: they represents three different ways of understanding sales and furthermore of seeing at life because they have different ages and experiences. The older played by Danni de Vito is tired, recently divorced and prone to drink. The younger is inexperienced, importunely religious and narrowminded. Larry, the third, played by Kevin Spacey is a dynamic experienced salesman and a close friend of the older, but he can’t do alone all the work. As the others he’s neither interested in what he sells, but he does like to sell. His product are lubricants but nobody are interested in these. The Big Kahuna, a mature man that we can suspect is also some tired of business, doesn’t carry his identity card at the convention, so he’s not recognized by the two experts as they don’t know him physically and by hazard, he coincides with the inexperienced young so, the business depends on himself but professionally he fails in driving the conversation all the evening only about Jesus. When the others know what happened, Larry explodes as the young doesn’t understand why he has done wrong. They treat to keep in mind of the young there are in life moments for spirituality and for oneself, but the convention isn’t one of these: they are here for work and sales and in not doing it, he’s not as good as he thinks of himself, but a fraud. There are, summing up, a complete study of characters, about life, about freedom of beliefs and about what, when and when not you must do your work ad when you can permit to be oneself, ad how to sell without let to be oneself. Excellent drama and actuations.
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Format: DVD
As a previous reviewer has noted, the script of this movie has many of the aspects of a Mamet play: sudden mood changes, all-male competitive environment. conflict, abusive argumentation, and above all the sententious (cp especially Glen Garry Glen Ross, for all these). The acting is astonishingly good and the whole work is deeply moving.
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Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
This was clearly written for the stage - probably in the 1950s??

The cinematographic technique is adapted accordingly. French 1950s style??? It's well acted but rather static and the message is rather.... well, watch it and decide. Don't watch if you are in a mid-life crisis!!!
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