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Lilyhammer - Season 1 [DVD]

Steve Van Zandt , Marian Saastad Ottesen    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (94 customer reviews)
Price: £10.00 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Steve Van Zandt, Marian Saastad Ottesen, Trond Fausa Aurvaag
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • 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: 3
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Universal Pictures UK
  • DVD Release Date: 17 Dec 2012
  • Run Time: 359.00 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (94 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B008DCXZRW
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,670 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

All eight episodes from the first series of the TV comedy drama, centering on a mafia mobster's attempts to start a new life in Lillehammer, Norway. After testifying against his old buddies in the mob, New York gangster Frank 'The Fixer' Tagliano (Steve Van Zandt) enters the FBI witness protection programme, choosing to be relocated to Lillehammer, Norway (he liked the look of it when he saw the 1994 Winter Olympics on TV). Now Norwegian-American immigrant Giovanni Henriksen, he quickly sets about making his new life as comfortable as he can by casually employing a mix of blackmail, extortion and threats to further his ambitions of opening his own bar, 'The Flamingo'. Unfortunately for Frank, however, his arrival in the town has not gone entirely unnoticed, as the local police soon begin to take an interest in his strangely empty background. The episodes are: 'Reality Check', 'The Flamingo', 'Guantanamo Blues', 'The Midwife', 'My Kind of Town', 'Pack Your Lederhosen', 'The Babysitter' and 'Trolls'.

Review

A terrific mix of comedy and drama, Lilyhammer centres on New York gangster Frank Tagliano played by Steve Van Zandt. Said gangster testifies against his former mob colleagues and with inevitable fear for his life he enters the witness protection programme. So far so conventional. But where Lilyhammer takes a different turn is when Frank decides to relocate to Norway. Nothing could go wrong there, right?

Predictably, it doesn’t quite work out like that. Frank’s life across the eight episodes in Lilyhammer’s first season remains full of incident as he looks to put his new life together, and the programme has great fun exploring that. Anchored by an excellent performance from Van Zandt, Lilyhammer turns out to be a Scandanavian series with a lovely, light touch. Furthermore, the Norwegian setting gives the programme some real distinction, with the exquisite scenery expertly utilised.

The disc release is a good one, not only bringing the quintet of episodes together, but also adding in some welcome added material. There’s still room for a lot more, but you get some concept art, as well as just over five minutes of outtakes. A short featurette also dissects putting the theme tune to the programme together.

Shortly after the first season premiered, a second season order of Lilyhammer was given the green light. It’s not hard to see why, on the basis of the quality of what’s on offer here.--Jon Foster


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One Of 2013's Highlights 28 Dec 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Stumbled on episode 1, series 1 by accident (OK, I was channel hopping, I admit it) and immediately got hooked. It's like the Sopranos come to Norway. It's clever, witty and definitely, at times, non-PC, gently highlighting Norway's 'right on' PC culture. Steve Van Zandt is outstanding managing to convey menace whilst at the same time being laugh out loud funny. The series is an absolute gem. I missed the last two episodes thanks to my wonderful Tivo box packing up so I bought the DVD. Series 2 is currently being screened but only on Netflix. If you want something different which is clever, funny and definitely original (when the Norwegians speak, they do so in Norwegian with subtitles in english), give Lilyhammer a go; you won't be disappointed.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars STOP! It's Lilyhammer time! 23 Dec 2013
By L. Tait
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
So, once again, BBCFour have come up trumps with screening this latest foreign comedy export! Hot on the heels of the hapless Icelandic petrol pump attendants in Naeturvaktin, comes Lilyhammer, which follows the fortunes of a Brooklyn hardman wanted by the mafia, and relocates to Lillehammer, a picturesque, quiet area of Norway. Adapting to the new cultural norms and his unorthodox way of solving trivial disputes provides the laughs. Spoiler alert! In the first episode, he kills a wolf! How's that for an opening gambit? And gets involved in some shady stuff as the series progresses! With such a fun protagonist, and the added bonus of the series being set in such a beautiful location, what's not to like? The end of season one left the door open for a second series, which has already been made. He's like the character Twoflower in Pratchett's discworld books, in that he boldly goes into dangerous situations and doesn't seem to care about his own safety, which baffles his enemies. Definitely worth a look!
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enormous fun! 26 Sep 2012
By Helen
Format:DVD
BE WARY - SLIGHT SPOILERS RE THE FIRST 3 EPISODES....

I never watched Sopranos. Perhaps I should have done......

Inevitably I would watch this, another splendid BBC4 Scandi offering, I'll watch anything BBC4 put on in a foreign language, knowing it should be good. It started for me with the brilliant French series Spiral and just look what we've had since, wonderful..... The Beeb have gone from tentative once a week foreign drama to now 2 a week plus foreign movies again after such a dearth for years of anything other than UK or USA. I'd be happy enough if the whole of BBC4 was foreign drama if all of it can be of such a high standard.

Watching Lilyhammer on BBC4 currently and 3 episodes already. Wonderful fun, every moment. The American actor playing the main part, a gangster taking refuge well away from the USA, is so engaging and it's particularly hilarious that the local (loopy) police think he's a terrorist hiding out - totally mistaken identity. Mind you, they don't know his real background which might also excite them.

The location is due we are told to Frank remembering that the Olympics had been held in Lillehammer. How nice for those of us who also follow the Winter Olympics to see the famous town in this fun series.

Much of the fun is due to "Giovanni" (Frank) using what are I assume his normal "Sopranos" US gangster type strong arm methods, also bribery etc. He never does anything really bad, it's just ensuring the undesirables are aware he's tougher than they are and it's a good idea to do what he wants. His new girlfriend is delightful.

Should you be a reader of the British Radio Times, ignore the totally inexplicable, sour reviews of the first 2 episodes of this series by a certain "AG".
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Off the Wall, in a good way. 15 Jan 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
A fine little series that tracks the adventures of an ex-mafia New Yorker in the calm quite of Lilyhammer, Norway. His new life amongst the politically correct people of that city causes a few issues that he solves mafia style. Light quite engaging, sometimes silly and funny. It's the sort of series you can warm to or not, I did warm to it.
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Format:DVD
Steven Van Zandt plays mafia wise guy Freddie `The Fixer' Tagliano out of New York (now known as Giovanni or Johnny Hendrickson) who arrives in Lillehammer, Norway and quickly gains the respect of the Norwegian people he meets. As with any wise guy `respect' is important and an incident on a train early in the first programme gives us an indication of Giovanni's moral compass. Initially he appears to be a fish out of water, but Johnny is a shark bent on thriving in this alien community and to this end buys a bar, which he renames `The Flamingo' after Bugsy Siegal's Las Vagas casino. Giovanni is capitalism personified and understands how to make friends through `quid pro quo' arrangements with local officials, criminals, businessmen and ordinary people.

There is much here to enjoy. A local police officer (a dead ringer for a young Steve Buscemi), an Elvis impersonator convinced that Giovanni is a Muslim terrorist. Giovanni's encounters with petty officialdom, in particular the social worker responsible for the integration of immigrants into the community. Giovanni's understanding of the Norwegian language.

Giovanni is a likeable character, and as with Tony Soprano, we are drawn into his criminal world and begin to empathise with his situation. It might be perceived that the Norwegians are portrayed as `idiots', but chief of police Laila Hovland is certainly no dullard, neither is the leader of the local biker gang, Giovanni's occasional business acquaintance. The same cannot be said for the Lien brothers, who are played strictly for laughs. After all, this is a situation comedy.
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