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Mother Night [DVD] [1997] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

Nick Nolte , Sheryl Lee , Keith Gordon    DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
Price: 18.95
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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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Frequently Bought Together

Mother Night [DVD] [1997] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] + Slaughterhouse Five [DVD] + 1984 [DVD]
Price For All Three: 28.95

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Product details

  • Actors: Nick Nolte, Sheryl Lee, Alan Arkin, Bernard Behrens, Anna Berger
  • Directors: Keith Gordon
  • Writers: Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Robert B. Weide
  • Producers: Keith Gordon, Josette Perrotta, Leon Dudevoir, Linda Reisman, Mark Ordesky
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Colour, Dolby, DVD-Video, Full Screen, Letterboxed, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: 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: New Line Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: 22 Aug 2000
  • Run Time: 114 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004RFAJ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 126,637 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


From Amazon.co.uk

Mother Night is the third movie from director Keith Gordon (The Chocolate War, A Midnight Clear). The 35-year-old director who started as an actor (Christine) has turned into one of the more assured directors working today. His films are ambitious in plot and tone. With Mother Night he works with his first major star, Nick Nolte.

In 1961, the fictitious Howard W Campbell Jr., an American by birth, shares the same deserted prison with Adolph Eichmann. As he prepares to stand trial for war crimes, the former playwright scribes his memoirs. Now this is the same Howard W. Campbell Jr. who was a notorious voice on German radio during the war, tearing into American policy and spreading Nazi propaganda. Was he a wilful participant or an American spy? Campbell, who romanticises at the drop of a hat, tells his story of indifference, morality, and love. His days of notoriety in Berlin give way to anonymity back in the States. He purrs about his true love (Sheryl Lee) and tells truths with his shrewd neighbour in New York (Alan Arkin).

The movie is based on Kurt Vonnegut's 1961 novel of the same name. Gordon and screenwriter Robert E. Weide have an uncommon insight into Vonnegut's material: the mesh of fact and fiction, the sweeping themes, the tragic goofiness. The movie is perfectly suited to Nolte's gruff style with a husky voice that pierces the night. The film is a cherished companion piece to Slaughterhouse Five. --Doug Thomas

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Your Past will catch up with you! 24 Dec 2011
By j.r
I first saw Mother Night in the late 90's and have watched it 3 or 4 times since. It's got such an interesting plot it is very rewatchable. It's also a very interpretational movie, both while watching it and after you can't help but analyse and consider the motivations and innocence or guilt of all the characters, especially Nick Noltes Spy/Nazi. The films very well put together with some great performances that include Alan Arkin and John Goodman. A very good film with a great story and cast.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Be careful what you pretend to be 4 Sep 2003
Format:VHS Tape
Throughout his acting career, Nick Nolte has never particularly inspired my admiration. Until MOTHER NIGHT, that is.
In a film adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut’s novel of the same title, Howard Campbell is an American playwright who grows to manhood in Germany before World War II. He marries Helga, a German actress. During the war, he elects to broadcast anti-Semitic speeches for the Reich Propaganda Ministry. Unknown to his Nazi bosses, he was recruited as an agent by the U.S. Defense Department shortly before the outbreak of the conflict, and Howard’s radio sermons pass along coded messages to the Allies. Only three other Americans know of his role: his mysterious recruiter Frank (John Goodman), FDR, and the head of the OSS. Frank tells Campbell that the American government will eternally disavow his heroic actions as the Soviets would twist the story into some sort of anticommunist German-American plot.
By the war’s end, Helga is dead. (Or is she?) Campbell is captured by the U.S. Third Army, but then released, apparently on the intercession of Frank, who also manages to spirit him to New York to restart his life. After 15 years living there unnoticed, Howard’s role as Hitler’s tame American is revealed to the public by an admiring neo-Nazi organization. Both the Israelis and Soviets clamor for his repatriation to stand trial.
MOTHER NIGHT plays more like a live stage production. It begins with Campbell being escorted to an Israeli prison to the song of Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas”. The film is a series of long flashbacks. At one point, Howard observes in a voice-over to the viewer that one must be careful what one pretends to be for that is what one truly becomes.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Auf Wiedersehen 2 Mar 2014
By Dr. Delvis Memphistopheles TOP 100 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
A brilliant film, (lacking a message?), well it has one, but it is not the usual easily broadcast here it is in large font and capital letters type of message. The film works on numerous levels around memory and culpability, the bond formed within human emotions and what is real and what is not.

In between we have the Final Solution and US culpability within its unfolding process. In actual fact the US was much more embroiled than depicted within this film. IBM supplied the machinery for the round up and the ideology was wholeheartedly supplied by US industrial trust funds (Take a bow - Carnegie Foundation, Rockefeller, Ford, and the individual gifts by Loeb and Harriman to the eugenicist cause). Roosevelt himself was nearly overthrown by the same geistmasters in 1934 who wanted to emulated their German prototype. Unfortunately even he could not stand up to Ford and Dupont along with Morgan when it came to taking a stand.

So the film looks at one mans involvement within the Reich and how he played various roles and later assuaged his conscience, limiting himself to not being interested in politics. Funny how people can tell themselves the most deluded things and believe in it, is part of the films repertoire, as Nick Nolte puts in a stunning performance as the main character, trapped within his make believe world. So he gets himself to think he is involved within the American war effort and plays the role with aplomb, moving from playwright to actor - trouble is he became his make believe character to such an extent he boosted the morale of the Nazis to keep on fighting. So Arthur Campbell becomes a true double agent.
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