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  • My So Called Life [DVD] [1994]
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My So Called Life [DVD] [1994]

60 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Claire Danes, Jared Leto
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: None
  • Dubbed: None
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: None
  • Audio Description: None
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 5
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Universal Pictures Video
  • DVD Release Date: 14 May 2007
  • Run Time: 540 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000N39I0M
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 10,604 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

All 19 episodes of the 1990s US teen drama series starring Clare Danes as the angst ridden, introspective Angela Chase. Episodes are: Pilot, 'Dancing in the Dark', 'Guns and Gossip', 'Father Figures', 'The Zit', 'The Substitute', 'Why Jordan Can't Read', 'Strangers in the House', 'Hallowe'en', 'Other People's Mothers', 'Life of Brian', 'Self-Esteem', 'Pressure', 'On the Wagon', 'So-Called Angels', 'Resolutions', 'Betrayal', 'Weekend' and 'In Dreams Begin Responsibilities'.


One of the most acclaimed series on TV during its brief run in the '90s, My So-Called Life pioneered the modern teen drama and made a star out of 15-year-old Claire Danes. Ostensibly centering around the trials and tribulations of high schooler Angela Chase, My So-Called Life actually expanded to include everyone in its protagonist's orbit, from school friends to extended family, and gave its stellar ensemble cast ripe material to work with during its too-short life. Produced by thirtysomething creators Marshall Herskovitz and Edward Zwick, MSCL evoked that yuppie-friendly show with its emphasis on finding extraordinary drama within ordinary situations, but was far more heartfelt and heart-wrenching, echoing the dizzying highs and lows of adolescence. As such, it developed a cult following among young viewers who identified strongly with Angela's high school traumas and followed her every move with rapt attention (after cancellation, the show enjoyed a popular reprise on MTV). Avoiding the sensational, My So-Called Life tackled every teen hot-button issue imaginable (and pioneered the then-controversial topic of teen homosexuality), but with a clear-eyed perspective, never dissolving into soap opera-–even when Angela mooned over heartthrob Jordan Catalano (dreamy Jared Leto). Even as it mined adolescent angst, though, My So-Called Life never lost sight of its adults, with Bess Armstrong and Tom Irwin both phenomenal as Angela's parents, whose marriage was one of the most complex seen on TV since... well, thirtysomething. Through it all, Golden Globe winner and Emmy nominee Danes was a neurotic, touching, and funny centre, whether obsessing over a zit or negotiating the rocky terrain of first love. Her funny, sobering, and empathetic portrait of teendom reminded us that in some ways, life was just an extended version of high school. --Mark Englehart

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By RoseD on 3 Sept. 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I first saw this when it was originally broadcast on channel 4 in the mid-ninties and what an impact it had on me; prompting me to go and study film and tv like I'd always wanted to. Thirteen or so years later, in my 40's I find I'm still captivated and charmed by the poetry of this ground breaking and hugely influential series. Somehow it wonderously manages to feel like something of its time but also still utterly contemporary - maybe that's because of its universal honesty about the pain and joy of those awkward teenage years no matter what decade you negotiated them through. From its rich tapestry of beautifully written, envisioned and understood characters it manages to illustrate that the journey from teen to adulthood from any vantage point (the dreamer, the geek, the rebel, the cool guy etc - male/female.) is fraught with problems and pratfalls. To say that Claire Danes is amazing is a gross understatement - her performance throughout is so precise and engaging as to still utterly floor me after all these years - but the rest of the cast are outstanding as well. Devon Gummersall as uber nerd Brian is particularily deserving in my opinion, managing to make a potentially irredeemably annoying character sympathetic, endearing and at times hilarious. Jared Leto, deserves a special mention too, as he somehow manages to flesh out the one dimensional dream boat Jordan and turn him into a complex 3D person with the minimum of lines. Beautifully shot and edited, with a fabulous soundtrack this series truly is a thing of beauty and sadly the likes of which may never come our way again.... I can't recommend it highly enough!
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50 of 51 people found the following review helpful By Sarra Manning on 18 May 2007
Format: DVD
Before The OC, before Skins, there was My So-Called Life and it still remains the most funny, poignant and truthful small screen portrayal of what it feels like to be a girl.

Angela Chase, played by Claire Danes when she was only 16, battles with her controlling mother, is betrayed by her phildandering father, argues with her bratty little sister and rebels against the safeness of her life by becoming friends with the dangerous Rayanne. And she falls painfully and hopelessly in love with Jordan Catalano (Jared Leto) who raised the beam for every other smirky-faced, tousle-haired toxic boy that a generation of girls would get crushes on.

The show dabbles with all those "teen issues" that it's meant to; sex, alcohol, homosexuality, domestic abuse and bad hair dye decisions but never does it in a clunky, preachy way and ended after one series, ensuring its legend lived on for ever more. With this UK DVD release (finally!), the show can be lifted out of cult status and find a new audience of girls who need to know that it's OK to feel odd and awkward and that you don't fit in.

I was working on the teen mag, J-17, when the show first aired and it changed my life in the best way. I now write young adult books and will always owe Winnie Holzman, the creator of My So-Called Life, a huge debt because this show inspired my writing and characters and always will.

Honestly, the best TV show that ever was...
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Candyflower on 13 Feb. 2004
Format: DVD
This is where it started! Claire Danes plays Angela Chase a 15 year old who is trying to understand love, life and herself. Its just so amazing, addressing real issues that we all face at 15, including alcohol, drugs, friendships, and the struggle for an idenity. Angela is the heroine of this series, dumping her best friend and replacing her with Rayanne, fighting against her parents for independance and falling in love with Jordan (a very fit Jard Leto).
Before we got Dawsons Creek, Buffy and all that ( which don't compare to this!) we had My So-Called Life, and its a must for any teenager or anyone (like me) who watched it when they were 15 and remember what it was like to be stuck at an awkward age.... trust me its a real treat.
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42 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Mooji on 4 Mar. 2007
Format: DVD
With references to marijuana, Kurt Cobain and unprotected sex in the first episode I was hooked. I must have been fourteen when this was on TV and within days this had cult status for my friends and I.
This was the first series aimed at teenagers that involved real teenage escapades and choices. Compared to the standard fodder of Bykers Grove and Grange Hill, this was no 1 viewing.
The series, sadly axed after just one, revolves around Angela and her journey from awkward adolescent to, well, awkward young adult. She's self conscious, arrogant, self centred, obsessed and desperately uncomfortable learning more about herself. Her best friends are Rayanne and Rickie, who between them experience parental abuse, neglect, promiscuity, alcoholism and homelessness. Also featured are Brian the super sensitive geek, Sharon the reproachful best friend from the past, and Jordan Catalano - the high school muso/drop out that Angela spends most of the series in and out of love with.
There are 19 episodes in this series, and in all honesty, not one of them is a dud. Maybe I loved this series so much because I was experiencing the same changes in my life that these characters were, or maybe this was just such a passionate and sympathetic portrayal of what life really was for us kids, that it remains one of my favourite memories of being 16 and watching the repetas on Channel 4 with all my girlfriends by candle light.
This may seem dated with the introduction of such programmes as Skins and Sugar Rush, but it comes with a sense of vulnerability and innocence that newer programmes could never exhibit.
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