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  • Oklahoma! (1999) [VHS]
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Oklahoma! (1999) [VHS]

100 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Maureen Lipman, Hugh Jackman, Josefina Gabrielle, David Shelmerdine, Jimmy Johnston
  • Directors: Trevor Nunn
  • Writers: Lynn Riggs, Oscar Hammerstein II
  • Producers: Andy Picheta, Chris Hunt, Richard Price
  • Language: English
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: Universal
  • VHS Release Date: 9 Oct. 2000
  • Run Time: 180 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (100 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004R7AJ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 190,551 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Specially filmed for video, this award-winning stage version of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical features Maureen Lipman, Hugh Jackman and Olivier Award-winner Shuler Hensley. Songs include 'Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin', 'The Surrey with the Fringe on Top' and 'People Will Say We're in Love'.

From Amazon.co.uk

When Mary Rodgers, daughter of the composer Richard Rodgers, was reported as saying she never wanted to see another Oklahoma!, it was her way of paying the highest tribute to Trevor Nunn's production at the Royal National Theatre which was subsequently taken into the studio and filmed. The camera follows the playgoers into the auditorium of the Olivier where in their company we watch the show and applaud the numbers as the real thing. Nunn treats Rodgers and Hammerstein's first collaboration with the utmost seriousness, restoring the full text so that it comes across as a drama indebted to Eugene O'Neill. Although Oklahoma! unfolds at a leisurely pace, it is extraordinary how one is drawn into the drama under Nunn's direction.

There's seldom a wish for true locations as the pace picks up and we move into the claustrophobic company of Judd Fry in his riveting encounter with the cowboy Curly. The close-up camera work affords an experience the theatre can't bring and also pays handsome dividends in appreciating Susan Stroman's intricate and lively choreography. Her dancers are a fine team, notably Jimmy Johnston who is outstanding as Will Parker leading the Kansas City ensemble. Hugh Jackman (X-Men) as Curly matches him in vocal prowess and looks, and Shuler Hensley sings the tricky role of Judd Fry very well. It's harder to place Peter Polycarpou's Pedlar, a considerably larger role than in the film version, whose accent strays from London's East End to the plains of Europe. Maureen Lipman, rightly deemed the lynchpin of the musical by Nunn, is a joy to watch as Aunt Eller. Laurey (Josefina Gabrielle) and Ado Annie (Vicki Simon) are good but not special. Aside from an abrupt start to Act Two and the occasional voice off microphone, the production sounds good with a larger orchestra present than in the theatre. An Oklahoma! on an epic scale. --Adrian Edwards --This text refers to the DVD edition.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Robert Levick on 2 Nov. 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I had the privilege of seeing this performance live. I was initially dubious about travelling 100 miles to London just to see another revival of 'some old musical'.

How wrong I was. From start to finish it was magnificent. A completely fresh interpretation of a classic. Apparently in the initial rehearsals Trevor Nunn had the cast read the songs rather than sing them. To ensure they understood the relevance of every line to the plot. The result shows in the way each song is truly brought to life.

At the end of the live performance I was so overwhelmed by one of my best ever evenings in the theatre (and I go regularly to all sorts of theatre events) I told my wife I'd love to see it again.

So two weeks later I was back! And the second time was just as good as the first.

If you love musicals you simply must see this. Hugh Jackman has since gone on the bigger and more profitable things. But I doubt he's ever done anything better than this.

As another reviewer observed, I defy you to not be singing these songs at work the next day.

This is one of those DVD's you can reach for when times are tough, or your mood is low. Within minutes of putting it on it truly will be 'a beautiful morning'.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 1 Oct. 2005
Format: DVD
Oh I love this film. I bought it on the basis of Hugh Jackman singing 'O What A Beautiful Morning' on a Hey Mr Producer video. My life that man can sing. Found it for 20p on Amazon so what was to be lost? And I LOVED it. Hughs accent when he first came on scared me but you get used to it, it even becomes endearing. It has such gorgeous music, a serious sing along. I can't hold back when the title track starts up. 'Surrey With A fringe on Top' is vying for most romantic song EVER with 'i've grown accustomed to her face' from My Fair Lady. He made it all up for her people, how cute is that? And the ballet sequence in the middle is beautiful (I love the bit where the cowboys come in, the music makes me giggle like a schoogirl!)and its overall a powerful musical. Buy this for a rainy day, its got amazing voices and talent. And come on, Hugh Jackman in a cowboy outfit? Worth it...
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 22 Jan. 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A fantastic version of the classic Rogers and Hammerstein show. You can't beat Hugh Jackman as Curly and Maureen Lipman as Aunt Ella. Brilliant songs, dances and casting. The ballet is also great with Hugh and Josefina dancing the parts instead of the usual substitute dances. If you love musicals you'll love this. It reatins some of the feel of going to the theatre to see it for real.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Mandy on 1 Oct. 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is one of the best musical interpretations I have ever seen. The cast is outstanding - there is a brilliant on-stage chemistry between the actors and the subsequent performances of their characters that makes this a pleasure to watch. The songs are sung with immense heart and feeling (try not to wander around the next day and NOT humm 'oh, what a beautiful morning!) and I personally feel Trevor Nunn should be made into the Patron Saint of the Theatre for getting Hugh Jackman to play Curly. Wonderful. I'm off to watch it again.......
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By C. O. DeRiemer HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on 10 Aug. 2007
Format: DVD
This is a filming of the Trevor Nunn version of the musical that first opened in London and then came over to Broadway. For many who may recall Oklahoma! only through the movie with Gordon MacRae and Shirley Jones, this should be a welcome new look. This version is energetic with the cowboys looking scruffy and with the characters much more clearly defined. Curly and Laurie are played by actors who do their own dancing as well as singing. Curly is played by Hugh Jackman as a strutting, confident young man. Jackman brings a lot of skill to the part as actor, singer and dancer. More importantly, he brings a lot of charisma and likeability. Josefina Gabrielle plays Laurie as a tomboy, but shy and thoughtful...and probably smarter than Curly. And Shuler Hensley as Jud Fry dominates his scenes. His Jud is surly and mean, but also torn by loneliness, a guy who is almost inarticulate with resentment. His "Lonely Room" becomes a powerful song. Jimmy Johnston plays Will Parker with great energy and, as with Jackman, great likeability.

Oklahoma! stands the test of time for a couple of reasons, I think. The story line is extremely simple, but it's the simplicity that makes the characters so attractive. Except for Jud Fry, there's no angst or psychological spinning. The toughest question is, will Curly get to take Laurie to the dance? The second reason is Rodgers and Hammerstein's terrific score. If there's a weak song in the show I didn't notice it. I particularly like "The Surrey With the Fringe on Top" and "Out of my Dreams." Surrey is a gem of a wooing song...sweet, a little funny but then very touching. The music is memorable yet easy to recall, and Hammerstein's lyric, in my view, is a classic example of the use of concrete imagery to evoke feelings.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Deirdre Straughan on 18 Aug. 2002
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I wish I'd seen this on stage, but since I missed it, the DVD will have to do. The show is excellent, a joy to watch again and again, and the cast is wonderful (Hugh Jackman fans especially will not be disappointed!).
But the production values of the DVD are a disappointment. Odd camera angles cause people's heads to be cut off from time to time, and the sound is extremely and distractingly uneven. It would also be helpful to have subtitles to help pick up on a few hard-to-catch lyrics.
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