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The Ambassador (1984)

Robert Mitchum , Rock Hudson , J Lee Thompson    Suitable for 18 years and over   DVD
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 4.02
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Product details

  • Actors: Robert Mitchum, Rock Hudson
  • Directors: J Lee Thompson
  • Language: German, 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: 18
  • Run Time: 110 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • ASIN: B008G3B67O
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 56,507 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Drama / thriller stars Robert Mitchum and Rock Hudson (In his last theatrical role)


Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Trevor Willsmer HALL OF FAME TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:Blu-ray
A curious Israelisation of Elmore Leonards 52 Pick-Up made only two years before the same producers made a more faithful and compelling adaptation with John Frankenheimer, The Ambassador is the kind of okay but resolutely undemanding political thriller that was starting to look more at home on the small screen than the big by 1984. Even the star cast - Robert Mitchum, Rock Hudson, Ellen Burstyn, Donald Pleasance, Fabio Testi - had started grazing on TV by then and was about a decade too late to draw much of a paying crowd at the movie theaters. After a disappointing US release, the Cannon group didn't even bother to release it in most of the foreign cinemas they owned despite planning it as a big prestige picture.

Leonard's original plot was solid enough not to need any additional spins: a businessman is blackmailed over his affair, but rather than pay up he comes clean with his wife. None too pleased, the blackmailers murder his mistress and set him up for the crime, forcing him to set them against each other (shades of Leonard's 50s Western The Tall T) before they can drop him in it. In this version the hero is now the US Ambassador to Israel, it's his wife who's having the affair and the stakes are raised by the blackmail scheme coinciding with his attempts to get the Israelis and the PLO around the negotiating table. Yet turning a private scandal into a possible international incident actually lowers the tension - even though he tries to handle it quietly himself, Mitchum's character simply has too much power, too much access to money and too many resources to call on, which makes him less self-reliant and devious than Roy Scheider in 52 Pick-Up.
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Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rock Hudson's Last Theatrical Film ! 23 Feb 2013
By K. Nolting - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Rock Hudson's last theatrical film. Able support is provided by Robert Mitchum and Ellen Burstyn. Lots of action in the middle east. Probably more for Hudson completists than anyone else but worth your time to watch.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Ambassador dvd 3 Dec 2012
By William D Martineau - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Great movie about issues inhibiting peace between Israel and the Palestinians. Cast is spectacular especially Robert Mitchum and Ellen Burstyn
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay but undemanding Israeli political thriller reworking of 52 Pick-up 20 Jun 2014
By Trevor Willsmer - Published on Amazon.com
A curious Israelisation of Elmore Leonards 52 Pick-Up made only two years before the same producers made a more faithful and compelling adaptation with John Frankenheimer, The Ambassador is the kind of okay but resolutely undemanding political thriller that was starting to look more at home on the small screen than the big by 1984. Even the star cast - Robert Mitchum, Rock Hudson, Ellen Burstyn, Donald Pleasance, Fabio Testi - had started grazing on TV by then and was about a decade too late to draw much of a paying crowd at the movie theaters. After a disappointing US release, the Cannon group didn't even bother to release it in most of the foreign cinemas they owned despite planning it as a big prestige picture.

Leonard's original plot was solid enough not to need any additional spins: a businessman is blackmailed over his affair, but rather than pay up he comes clean with his wife. None too pleased, the blackmailers murder his mistress and set him up for the crime, forcing him to set them against each other (shades of Leonard's 50s Western The Tall T) before they can drop him in it. In this version the hero is now the US Ambassador to Israel, it's his wife who's having the affair and the stakes are raised by the blackmail scheme coinciding with his attempts to get the Israelis and the PLO around the negotiating table. Yet turning a private scandal into a possible international incident actually lowers the tension - even though he tries to handle it quietly himself, Mitchum's character simply has too much power, too much access to money and too many resources to call on, which makes him less self-reliant and devious than Roy Scheider in 52 Pick-Up. It doesn't help that most of the heavy lifting is done by Hudson, surprisingly not looking too unhealthy in his final film, or that the villains are a poorly defined bunch who are never manipulated, merely caught.

While J. Lee Thompson's film is not as appropriately seedy as Frankenheimer's later version, the old lech does manage to persuade Burstyn to let her puppies out of their kennel as the ambassador's wife with a taste for getting drunk at receptions and sleeping with Arab antique dealers-cum-PLO leaders, and there are enough explosions, helicopter shootouts and unconvincingly bloody massacres for the Go-Go boys to get a good exploitation movie trailer out of it despite its high political ideals ("He's through negotiating!"). But the cast are surprisingly good and generally avoid coasting even if they're not on top form, it's solidly made and, like co-producer Menachem Golan's earlier Operation Thunderbolt, more even-handed with the Arab characters than you'd expect even if the politics never stray beyond simplistic well-meaning "give peace a chance" platitudes. Unexceptional but watchable.

The German DVD and region-free Blu-ray offers a cleaned up widescreen transfer with US trailer and stills gallery as extras.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 18 July 2014
By jim d jones - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Great.
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the ambassador 5 Jun 2013
By mary ann myers - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I don't like the nude seans.It is very distasteful. the rest of the movie was very good .good story Loved Rock Hudsons performance.
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