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Rites of Passage [DVD] [1999] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

Dean Stockwell , James Remar , Victor Salva    DVD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Region 1 encoding (requires a North American or multi-region DVD player and NTSC compatible TV. More about DVD formats.)

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Product details

  • Actors: Dean Stockwell, James Remar, Jason Behr, Robert Glen Keith, Jaimz Woolvett
  • Directors: Victor Salva
  • Writers: Victor Salva
  • Producers: Dean Stockwell, Anita Gershman, Craig Davis Roth, Ed Cathell III, J. Todd Harris
  • Format: Colour, DVD-Video, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: R (Restricted) (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Wolfe Video
  • DVD Release Date: 30 Aug 2000
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004TJNB
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 88,295 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rites of Passage 19 Mar 2004
"Rites of Passage" it a great little film. it stars Jason Behr (Roswell, Dawson's Creek), and Dean Stockwell. Its about a family with dark secrets. The main focus it the younger son, Campbell (Jason Behr), who is confused, wanting desperately to be loved the same way his father loves his older brother. Out of his yearning for acceptance, he puts the lives of that of his father, his brother and himself at risk. In the end he redeems himself, and finally gains the love of his father he wanted for so long. But there is always a price to pay.....
From the moment his first scene starts, Jason Behr steals the movie. For those of you who have not heard of Roswell, and those of you who have, this is another reason to admire the pure talent of this extraordinary young man. Its a great little film to add to your DVD collection.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Jason Behr is a truly natural talent. Who makes the story believable. This film has some "twists and turns", that surprises you. Jason Behr's portrayal of Campbell ("Cammiyo"). is a fine piece of acting. Highly recommended.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.1 out of 5 stars  56 reviews
140 of 148 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Powerful thriller with a tender heart 4 July 2000
By Libretio - Published on

(USA - 1998 - color & black and white)

Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Theatrical soundtrack: Dolby Stereo SR

If DVD is about anything at all, it's about rescuing worthwhile movies from undeserved obscurity. And Victor Salva's RITES OF PASSAGE (1998) is a GREAT movie, a textbook example of economy and precision, brimming with honest emotion and high quality drama. On the one hand, it's a wrenchingly powerful examination of a young gay man (Jason Behr, from TV's "Roswell") coming to terms with years of neglect at the hands of an abusive father (Dean Stockwell) who doesn't know how to communicate with him. And on the other, it's a hairy-chested thriller about a father and his grown-up sons (Behr and Robert Keith) who must set aside their differences when their visit to an isolated mountain cabin coincides with the arrival of two escaped convicts (James Remar and Jaimz Wolvett) who are searching for buried loot. These disparate strands are woven seamlessly into a satisfying whole, allowing gut-wrenching thrills to develop naturally from the emotional stand-offs which underline most of the featured relationships.

A heavyweight cast rises to the challenge of Salva's extraordinarily complex script, and the film's technical construction simply cannot be faulted. It's a testament to all involved that the plot never becomes static or claustrophobic, despite the single isolated setting (the bulk of the film takes place in and around a mountain cabin during one particular night), and while the heroes and villains are clearly signposted, Salva's corkscrew plot encourages us to repeatedly question our understanding of the characters and their motivations. For all its action and suspense, this thriller has a tender heart and a vivid appreciation of human virtues and frailties.

Salva and Behr recorded an articulate, humorous, and hugely engaging commentary track for the original US DVD which explained the origins of the script (rooted in Salva's own childhood with a difficult stepfather), the casting process, and a wealth of production details. Salva lavishes praise on all his collaborators, particularly on Behr whose superb performance is the crux of the entire film, to a point where Salva eventually becomes a little embarrassed by his own effusive compliments. To his credit, Salva's appraisals seems like genuine reactions to the consummate skill of his cast and crew, and it's left to Behr to point out the writer-director's own significant contribution to the movie's artistic success.

Bottom line: Rent it, buy it, or borrow it, even if it's just to drool over Jason Behr (!), but whatever you do, DON'T MISS IT. POWDER proved that Salva could work magic with a substantial budget, while RITES OF PASSAGE demonstrates his unique ability to create similar miracles with virtually no money at all. An absolute delight from start to finish.
76 of 78 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great acting and wild suspense makes this movie a powerhouse 8 Dec 2000
By A Customer - Published on
I admit to searching this title out because I am a huge Jason Behr fan, but I never expected to be so blown away by his acting skills. It's very nice to see him out of "Max's" skin.
Behr's portrayal of the outcast son of a rather well off family is impeccable. Cambell, also is gay, and this is not accepted well by his father (Stockwell). Their all ready shaky relationship turns almost hostile due to Del Farraday finding his son in another man's embrace two Christmas' ago. Del apparently beat the boy, Billy, and threw him from the cabin. Behr gives his heart to this character, and it is so beautiful to watch.
The cast is just amazing. Dean Stockwell has always been a favorite, and he plays the condescending, overpowering, father figure (with a heart) perfectly. The actor who plays DJ Jr., Robert Keith, was also wonderful. The tumultous relationship between these three men is wrenching to watch.
James Remar, whom I had never heard of, was so good at being the slippery, bad guy, who had more tricks up his sleeve than really necessary. Frank is a master criminal, a dangerous man, and a slick liar, all rolled into a very strong character. His mere presence in the cabin with the Farraday family is a suspense filled effect. He mocks, he teases, he throws heated glances, and laughs so powerfully that it makes your bones cold. The obvious tension between Remar and Behr's characters is thick. His nonchalant attitude makes him hard to read, but no character is as they first appear.
Between secrets that unfold and lies that are told, you never know what is going to happen next. The story has many different layers and subplots, however, they are all so written. They appear seemless. I have never been so glued to a screen before! I recommend this to anyone and everyone!
Victor Salva has done it again. He was astouding with Powder. That was one of the most beautiful movies I have ever watched. Salva is a master at human nature and the human psyche. He repeats a wonderful performance with the story and actors behind Rites of Passage.
26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jason Behr's best performance! 20 Oct 2000
By J. Egerton - Published on
I bought this movie originally because Jason Behr was the star, and also because of it's theme. The movie deals with the struggle Campbell (Behr) who is recovering from the loss of his lover Billy, and the neglect of his father.
I identified with Campbell, as I too have a turbulent relationship with my father; and have also lost my partner, so by the end of this movie I was drowning in my own tears.
Behr plays the character Campbell extremely well, pushing his fantastic acting ability to the limits. He has such a fabulous way of expressing his emotions, and making you the viewer; have compassion for his character.
The DVD is excellent, deleted scenes, one a personal fave, when Campbell goes to see his mother. Audio comments by director and Jason Behr, please buy this one!!
24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best human dramas of recent years! 31 Aug 2001
By D. Litton - Published on
"Rites of Passage" is a finely tuned psychological thriller that does more than just keep our stomachs tightened for an hour and a half. This story of a father and his two sons being held at the whim of a convict is more than that, digging deep into its characters to give the story a much richer complexity and intrigue. As far as thrillers go, I was breathless; as far as human dramas go, I was hooked.
The film introduces us to Del Farraday (Dean Stockwell) and his son D.J. (Robert Keith), who run into one another in a San Francisco hotel. In hopes that he might quiet any objections his son may have about seeing his father with another woman, the two venture to the family lakeside cabin for a weekend of bonding. That is, until they arrive and realize that Campbell (Jason Behr), the youngest son, is also there, and immediately we get the feeling that there is bad blood between father and son.
As it turns out, it goes back years ago, when Del caught Campbell giving his heart to another boy by the name of Billy, and lost himself in rage. The two have had no contact for months at a time, so it comes as no surprise that when Del reveals his affair with another woman, an argument ensues. But any and all arguments are cast aside when two strangers arrive, who turn out to be escaped felons, one of whom has a connection to Campbell's lost Billy, and with whom Campbell has an agenda.
To reveal any more will ruin the plot's many twists and turns, though not so much the thriller ones as the emotional ones. This is one well-crafted film from Victor Salva, the director of "Powder." His work on that project and his work here prove his worth as a filmmaker in that he can do so much with a large budget film, and take material such as this and turn it into solid entertainment with a minimal budget.
Salva's most winning aspect of this film is his attention to the emotions of his characters, particularly Campbell, whose homosexuality fuels most of what's going on in the plot. Campbell is given the typical emotions of someone who feels empty and lonesome, but under the powerful performance of Jason Behr, these emotions are so impacting and believable that they add so much to the overall effect of the film. Salva is also careful not to turn the film into a coming-out story, but more of a story about coming to terms.
The father/son examination this film partakes is simply stunning. This human drama unfolds very effectively as Campbell and his father, played in a winning performance from Dean Stockwell, must come to terms with one another, what has happened in the past, and what is going on as they find themselves in danger. There is always some measure of loyalty that each holds for the other, and the film portrays that loyalty in such a light that nothing could ever shake it.
Another good aspect is the way in which Salva allows the psychological drama to play on those emotions. One of the escaped felons, Frank (James Remar), plays on Campbell's childhood memories of his father's disdain for him, using it as a tool to win him over and keep him loyal. Remar pushes the envelope with his witty and chilling performance, and to watch the interaction between he and Behr in the most intense moments will keep you on the edge of your seat.
While it is most definitely an unknown film, "Rites of Passage" will be remembered by those who see it. It not only winds the chord of suspense until the knot in your stomach is unbearable, but it gives us characters whose emotions we can identify with and understand. These emotions come out through some very strong performances, and some very provocative directing. I got so much more from this film than I expected, and hold it up as one of the best human dramas of recent years.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A movie deemed most entertaining and touching 4 April 2001
By Gregory - Published on
I decided to purchase this movie based on the reviews I read here on I read a few reviews and right away I knew I was captured, I had to buy it. I must say that each actor is given the role that fit them most, no one appeares out of place or out of character in the part they portray. The film is quite vivid in its delivery of past occurances, it does not bore the viewer. Even though I felt satisfied with the history of the past, I felt so touched about the situation with Billy that I wanted to learn more about his relationship with Campbell. One has no choice but to be sympathetic to Campbell (Behr), he expresses just the right amount of emotions. This film was cleverly directed, the little bit of suspense keeps the viewer entertained. The gay issue, I feel is very well presented, many who watch the film can relate because the story is very realistic. I say realistic beacuase there are so many young, and even older gay individuals who experience similar situations with a parent's understanding of who they really are. I like the fact that this is not just a movie based on gay individuals or issues, there is actually a very good plot. Rites of Passage is a magnificent picture that allows the viewer to open up and feel the emotions of happiness, despair, fear and love as they flow. I was satisfied.
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