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Once [DVD]

Glen Hansard , Markéta Irglová , John Carney    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (213 customer reviews)
Price: £4.93 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Once [DVD] + Once: Music From The Motion Picture + The Swell Season
Price For All Three: £17.20

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Product details

  • Actors: Glen Hansard, Markéta Irglová, Hugh Walsh, Gerard Hendrick, Alaistair Foley
  • Directors: John Carney
  • Writers: John Carney
  • Producers: David Collins, Martina Niland
  • Format: DVD-Video, PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Icon Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 25 Feb 2008
  • Run Time: 85 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (213 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000ZK9SQM
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 851 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



Winner of the World Audience Award at Sundance, Once starts out as a small-scale romance, like Before Sunrise, before arriving somewhere unexpected. An Irish busker (Glen Hansard, the Frames and The Commitments) meets a Czech flower seller (Markéta Irglová) while singing on the streets of Dublin. (In the credits, they're listed as Guy and Girl.) She likes what she hears and lets him know. Turns out she's a musician, too. They work on a few songs together and a friendship is forged. She lives with her widowed mother, who doesn't speak English. He lives with his widowed father, who owns a repair shop. Since he broke up with his girlfriend, the guy has been drifting, unable and unwilling to get his life in order. The girl encourages him to pursue a record deal, and the guy emerges from his funk. Then he makes a move on the girl, who rejects his advances. He's confused, but as he comes to find, there's a reason she’s keeping her distance. Though Once is filled with appealing folk-pop by Hansard and Irglová (released on CD as The Swell Season), the movie isn't a traditional musical, but rather a more optimistic Brief Encounter. Filmmaker John Carney, Hansard's former bandmate, captures the real city--in all its affluence and poverty--rather than the picture postcard version. His beautifully shot film serves as a heartfelt ballad about all the underclass Guys and Girls swept aside amidst Ireland's economic miracle. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

Product Description

Brand new - we ship worldwide

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
77 of 82 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully underplayed 14 Dec 2007
I saw the trailer for this on the internet, and liked the idea immediately: busker boy meets girl and they make beautiful music together. Conscious that this wasn't perhaps the first time that this storyline had been used, I wondered how they'd fare at steering past the obvious cliches, but I'd never have imagined they could be so wildly successful.

The hand-held camera makes you feel like you're watching a couple in the street, but they're so believable in their roles that you never suspect them of just acting. This is hard to do without some of the more obvious trappings of film, but it's totally compelling - just watch the subtle way Glen Hansard's character tries to master his confusion when he meets the girl's family in her bedsit. Or the way in which he teaches her his first song, which has to be the most accurate portrayal of this kind of scene I've ever seen. Or the final scene with his father, which appears to sum up the depths of a complex relationship with just a few lines.

Much of the film is given over to a careful attention on the music, with a generosity that's repayed many times over - there's a central, unbroken shot of her walking back from the corner shop late at night quietly singing to herself that seems to take a long time, but you realise that's just how it should be. To be sure, the instinct for avoiding cliche slips up sometimes: I wasn't surprised at the speed with which the recording engineer went from being cynical to impressed (though I was a bit surprised that the first song the busker decided to lay down was in 5/4, which is hard to dance to, at least).

But, especially considering the contrast with the previous film I saw Glen Hansard in (the disappointing Commitments, which had great music but lousy acting), I don't think I've seen such a beautiful piece of work for a very long time.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, heartbreaking and cathartic 8 Dec 2011
This film is an absolute gem - bringing you into the world of two lonely people who are lucky enough to meet each other.

Glen Hansard has a gut-wrenchingly emotional singing voice and Marketa Irglova's is intoxicating, elegant and child-like.

This story will break your heart but leave you feeling somehow at peace with yourself.

The Blu-Ray picture is very clean and dirt-free - bear in mind this is not a high budget movie by any stretch, so it isn't perfect, but absolutely faithful to the (limited) theatrical presentation. The audio is very well mixed and free of distortion.

Try "Once" once, you won't regret it.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Unexpected Gem 20 Dec 2010
Once is a near-perfect story. Here's how you'll know if you'll like it:

*minor spoilers within*

Do you like music? No, let me rephrase that. Does music possess you, move you, excite you and make you feel like nothing else? Andy Dufresne in the Shawshank Redemption understood. If the answer is yes, you will get this film.

If you like your music packaged and your performers manufactured and given an image to make their product sell, this might not be for you.

Once is about a guy (we never learn his name) who busks on the streets of Dublin when he's not helping his dad repair vacuum cleaners. By day, he plays familiar songs. People give him money because they recognise the songs. By night, he plays his own material. It possesses him. He lives and breathes it. He's a conduit for this powerful expression of emotion.

He's not an actor, he's a musician (The Frames) and had a role in The Commitments.

While playing one of the songs at night, a girl (we never learn her name either) sees him performing and gives him 10c. She asks if he'll repair her vacuum cleaner.

She's not an actress either. She's a musician from the Czech Republic. The two have a real-life relationship.

A friendship is formed. She can play classical piano. They play a song together. Will their relationship become a romantic one, or is music and friendship the only thing they will share?

She helps him. He helps her. Stuff happens. Wonderful stuff.

This film captures what it's like to be a musician. If you meet the first description I mentioned above, you could easily love this film. There are so many memorable scenes. I thought about it for at least a week after I first saw it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Simple and engaging 17 Feb 2009
This is a lovely little film built on a simple premise and all the better for it. There are no pretensions here - it's low budget and looks it and that is the point. The songs bind everything together and are cracking tunes if you like your folksy singer songwriter stuff. It's romantic and engaging and at less than 1:30 it's over before you know it. Beautiful.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A hidden gem to make you feel good. 11 Jan 2009
By pauland
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I only came across the film when browsing through Amazon. It sounded good and a great film to watch as a family. The film is an absolute delight - the more so because it doesn't have hollywood polish and sometimes misses a trick, but this is what gives this film it's charm. The music holds this film together and is there almost throughout. I have little doubt I'll watch this film again and again and I can't say that for many films. Now to buy the soundtrack..

..don't miss it.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No-brainer purchase (for USA fans, too!) 14 Jun 2010
The movie itself is fantastic - a fact which has been well-documented. It's a story of an amazing friendship. I liked it so much, I bought the DVD, soundtrack, and now the Blu-Ray. For this review, I would like to focus my comments on the Blu-Ray itself.

The video and audio quality are both brilliant. Audio is indeed DTS-HD Master Audio as the box says, though it is only 2.0, which some equipment may handle incorrectly. I have an Oppo BDP-80 paired with an Emotiva UMC-1 via HDMI, and the audio sounds great. The UMC-1 recognizes the audio stream as DTS-HD MA 2.0. If you think the audio doesn't sound right, try running without any effects or matrixing (e.g. NEO:6). By the way, the alternate audio tracks are also DTS-HD MA 2.0.

Now, for USA fans: The disc is not region-locked, and the main movie and menu will play just fine on your Blu-Ray players. The special features are PAL, so you will need a player that can convert PAL to NTSC. The special features play fine on my BDP-80, for example.

If you're a fan of the movie, this Blu-Ray is a no-brainer, especially at this price. Get it while it lasts!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Movie
I like this movie very much, both lead actors in it perform very well and the music is very beautiful. Highly recommended.
Published 1 day ago by Martin Kneen
5.0 out of 5 stars A lovely musical
I'm not really a lover of musicals but this was great. The original songs and the really nice storyline made this an excellent purchase. Read more
Published 3 days ago by John
5.0 out of 5 stars Marvellous
That's a kind of musical... Songs and singers are beautiful, plot is moving, Dublin is.. Dublin. Just go for it..
Published 10 days ago by Q. G.
4.0 out of 5 stars Once Upon A Time In Dublin
I watched this film on a recommendation from a friend.. it did not have obvious immediate appeal, and as I started watching it, it was clearly made on a budget, in a city I was... Read more
Published 23 days ago by Mr. Stephen Kennedy
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
Reviews are all about personal taste and this film certainly wasn't mine. I should have paid more attention to imdb parents guide when it said there are over 40 swear words in the... Read more
Published 25 days ago by rasher23
2.0 out of 5 stars Tries too hard to be "Arty" !!
I like unusual films with a message rather than special effects and CGI but this film tried too hard to be "off the wall" , from the start the hand held camera shots were much too... Read more
Published 28 days ago by David H J Ashdown
5.0 out of 5 stars Once, a film with a music background
I saw this film at a cinema, I loved it so much I came home and ordered it immediately from Amazon. A wonderful film with great music at its heart, a story of a couple who are... Read more
Published 1 month ago by M. C. Hodgkins
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my top ten films
You won't believe how this lovely story will wend its way into your emotions. Apparently, filmed using hand-held cameras, it gives a very realistic insight into the lives of the... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Johnnie132
2.0 out of 5 stars Boring
Not for me. Nothing much happened and I did not like the guy's singing. I suppose it would be OK if you did like him.
Published 1 month ago by spinster
5.0 out of 5 stars Once DVD
Well after all the advance press publicity for this film, I was disappointed in this. However, perhaps I am a voice crying in the wilderness.
Published 1 month ago by misswirral
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