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Never Let Me Go [Blu-ray] [2010] [US Import]

Keira Knightley , Carey Mulligan , Mark Romanek    Blu-ray
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (103 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Actors: Keira Knightley, Carey Mulligan, Andrew Garfield, Izzy Meikle-Small, Charlie Rowe
  • Directors: Mark Romanek
  • Writers: Alex Garland, Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Producers: Alex Garland, Allon Reich, Andrew Macdonald, Joanne Smith, Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Format: AC-3, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, Dubbed, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: English, French, Spanish
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: R (Restricted) (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: 1 Feb 2011
  • Run Time: 103 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (103 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 207,639 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


From Amazon.co.uk

In adapting Kazuo Ishiguro's celebrated novel, director Mark Romanek (One Hour Photo) and screenwriter Alex Garland (Sunshine) transform dystopian fiction into period drama by presenting an alternate past in which people routinely live beyond 100--at a cost to those who make it possible. In the 1970s, Kathy (Isobel Meikle-Small) and Ruth (Ella Purnell) attend Hailsham, a British boarding school where Miss Emily (Charlotte Rampling) holds sway--and no one ever mentions their parents. When new teacher Miss Lucy (Sally Hawkins, Happy-Go-Lucky) arrives, she reaches out to the awkward Tommy (Charlie Rowe), with whom Kathy becomes close--until jealous Ruth steals him away. Then Lucy reveals what will happen when they leave. By the 1980s, Kathy (a poignant Carey Mulligan), Ruth (Keira Knightley), and Tommy (Andrew Garfield) live in the country until they're ready to fulfill their purpose. With Ruth and Tommy an item, Kathy becomes a carer, a sort of social worker. Over the years, the three go their separate ways until the 1990s, by which point their time will run out unless they can arrange for a deferral. Throughout, Romanek never presents alternate points of view; the audience experiences this brave new world only through the eyes of its sheltered protagonists. If the story raises issues that recall Orwell, the unhurried pace echoes The Remains of the Day, Merchant Ivory's Ishiguro adaptation. Similarly, Never Let Me Go is a work of great skill and compassion, but make no mistake: it's also very, very depressing. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Haunting and quite brilliant 8 Feb 2012
I watched this DVD the other day without having a clue what it was I was going to be watching, and have been unable to stop thinking about it ever since. I've bought the book and started reading it, and it's even better.

I'm not going to give a synopsis of the film because if you haven't seen it or read the book it will completely spoil it. Suffice to say it's quietly shocking and the horror of the situation dawns on you slowly - it's certainly not an uplifting film, but it is a thought provoking one.

I thought the cinematography was perfect, the locations were perfect, and the understated acting perfectly suited the tone of the story. There are no great dramas, no real action, no displays of emotion, and given the subject this lack of passion is all the more disturbing.

I have seen on other reviews that people who have read the book are often disappointed with the film and this leads them to not recommend it, but I would say the opposite - see the film, think about it, then read the book.

I wasn't going to write a review because I'm not much good at it, but I've been so affected by the film that I had to say something, and it's not often a film can affect me so profoundly.

The one negative note is Keira Knightly and her daft expressions. She's perfectly cast as Ruth in many ways, she just needs to get her gurning under control.
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69 of 74 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Shining stars of British talent. 21 Jan 2011
It's often very difficult to separate a book and the inevitable screen adaptation. I'm always uncertain if it's a good or bad thing to have read the book before seeing the film, or if they should be taken into account as two completely separate entities. With Never Let Me Go the film is strong enough and the performances sure enough for it to stand alone.

Based on the book of the same name by Kazuo Ishiguro (I've copied and pasted his name to make sure I spell it correctly) it follows three characters through the process of growing up, falling in love, and then going through the tough ordeal of being used as organ donors. It's a rather Sci-Fi concept, set in a very English environment, with stunning landscapes of a country boarding school, Norfolk cottages and gorgeous countryside.

Kathy, Tommy and Ruth all grow up together in a facility that care for "clones" that will be, in later life, used for their vital organs for everyday people. They are kept away from the outside world, are not taught any life skills, and just encouraged to keep fit and healthy and enjoy the wonders of art and poetry. It is these three characters that we follow throughout the film, finding out their expectations, emotions and eventually the questions they ask themselves about what their life boils down to.

The three central actors, Carey Mulligan, Andrew Garfield and Kiera Knightley are on great form, and their ever complicated love triangle draws you in to this wonderfully crafted drama. It doesn't shout, it doesn't insult anyones intelligence and it enthrals the audience in the journey of these strange but wonderful characters, in this strange and wonderful life they have been given.

Wonderful story, beautifully shot and terrifically acted. A film that will make you think about missed opportunities, the fragility of life and the chances that we have to make it what we want.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A disturbing theme yet a beautifully told story 22 Feb 2012
My own interpretation of this story is one of an alternate reality in which the life expectancy for the masses has been dramatically increased by creating a two class society, with the underclasses being bred simply to donate their vital organs when they reach adulthood to serve the majority.

I saw it as a what-if story that was very effecting with some profound insights into what life might be like if you were living as one of the underclasses knowing you had a limited time before the donation of a vital organ killed you. It's not a story of the horror of this situation, it's a story of a few people who know what their deaths are for, trying to find out what their lives are for.

This film is dissimilar to the dystopian stories of Logan's Run or Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451 in that there isn't a figure fighting against the system as in Ewan McGregor's Lincoln Six Echo in The Island, or Christian Bale's John Preston in Equilibrium. Instead the two class system is accepted without a rebellious uprising, similar perhaps to that told in Gattaca.

To that end it is a cross genre tale focusing more on the love triangles that develop during adolescence and less on the science fiction undertones of a reality we all hope could never be allowed to exist. I would recommend this film to anyone who can enjoy a slower paced film who's willing to think about the issues raised and doesn't need the plot spelt out for them in dialogue.
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53 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ONE OF MY TOP TEN MOVIES OF ALL TIME 14 Feb 2011
Never Let Me Go is a movie based on a novel by one of my favourite authors, Kazuo Ishiguro.

The plot focuses on three characters: Kathy, Ruth and Tommy, who become entangled in a love triangle. It has the usual themes of love, jealousy and betrayal, but what is different about this particular story is that the central characters are "clones" which have been created and raised solely to provide donor organs to transplants. The film chronicles phases in the lives of the main characters.

I must challenge some of the points made in other reviews. Firstly, this is not a science fiction movie. Indeed, the director, Mark Romanek, said that he did not make Never Let Me Go a science fiction film; instead he was doing a love story with fictional science context mixed into the story. He goes on to describe it as a "love story where the science fiction is this subtle patina on the story."

Secondly, some reviewers question why the central characters - the "donors" - passively accept their fate and not rebel and run away. Romanek explains that this is not the story the author wanted to write. The story is essentially about behaviour and acceptance and examples given are where people stay in marriages that are abusive or unhappy or people stay in jobs that they don't find fulfilling. Another example is how people who have terminal illnesses don't suddenly go on a world cruise or bungee jump off a bridge, they usually stay in their routines. Arguably the fundamental reason may be because Mr Ishiguro was born in Japan and in Japanese culture it's considered heroic to perform one's service to the greater good of society.

Finally some reviewers appear to be disappointed because there is no action. This is a movie based on a Kazuo Ishiguro novel.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Poignant and thought-provoking
(This review is based on a TV showing by Film4. It is possible that the version they showed may have been 'ruined for television', that is, edited for the benefit of those of a... Read more
Published 1 day ago by GrahamG
5.0 out of 5 stars Service
Very good service. very good product. Excellent value for money. I would recommend to family and friends without any hesitation.
Published 2 days ago by clive parker
5.0 out of 5 stars Affecting
Others have touched on the mechanics of what this film is like. I can only add that this film has really made me think. I can't stop thinking about it since watching. Read more
Published 2 days ago by john, london
5.0 out of 5 stars Should not give it away at the beginning
Like "Life of Pi", the movie give it away at the beginning (we saw Pi as an older man, recounting his experience. Read more
Published 14 days ago by Topazia
3.0 out of 5 stars Not the film to choose if you need cheering up!
A melancholy film, tracing three youngsters through the years from when they are approximately 10 to when they are 28. Read more
Published 20 days ago by Graham
5.0 out of 5 stars Thought provoking
Has undertones of George Orwell, a world where things are not what they seem. One of those special films which stay with you.
Published 26 days ago by Amazon Customer
1.0 out of 5 stars Shocking!
I didn’t know what this film was about before I watched it and apart from the acting being good, the storyline is sickening, shocking and disgusting!. Read more
Published 1 month ago by WormKez
1.0 out of 5 stars Sickening
I can't understand why anyone would want to watch this film if they knew beforehand what the story was - I didn't and was so sickened when I realised. It's just too awful for words
Published 1 month ago by Elaine
3.0 out of 5 stars Weird film
Was a strange moody film, good characters, at their best at their young age, bit confusing through out, but a good film to get you thinking.
Published 1 month ago by Caroline Donaghey
4.0 out of 5 stars What a great film adaptation
I am usually very skeptical about film adaptation of a book, but this one turned out to be an exception !!! Read more
Published 2 months ago by Zuz
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