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The Bonfire Of The Vanities [1990] [DVD]


Price: £5.44 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Tom Hanks, Bruce Willis, Melanie Griffith, Kim Cattrall, Saul Rubinek
  • Directors: Brian De Palma
  • Writers: Michael Cristofer, Tom Wolfe
  • Producers: Brian De Palma, Chris F. Woods, Fred C. Caruso, Jon Peters, Monica Goldstein
  • Format: PAL, Subtitled
  • Language: English, French
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, German, French, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Arabic, Romanian, Bulgarian
  • Dubbed: Italian
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: 1 Jun 2006
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004SPVI
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 14,115 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

Financial trader Sherman McCoy (Tom Hanks) runs over a poor black person, nearly fatally, while driving with his mistress (Melanie Griffith) through the Bronx. When drunken hack Peter Fallow (Bruce Willis) gets the story, McCoy becomes the central character in a tale of political and racial scandal that paints a social tableau of Manhattan with a very broad brush.

From Amazon.co.uk

Is it time, after the anonymous disaster of Mission to Mars, to give Brian De Palma's famously doomed film of Tom Wolfe's bulky novel Bonfire of the Vanities another chance? The uproarious ins and outs of the film's troubled production have become well-known via Julie Salamon's account of its making, The Devil's Candy, and fans of that might want to flick between page and screen to see just when Melanie Griffith caused untold continuity problems by having her breasts inflated. Techno buffs will surely appreciate the pointless but somehow wonderful trickery of an extended tracking shot at the outset that exists only to last a few seconds longer than the one in Orson Welles Touch of Evil (1958). Tom Hanks was rather better cast than was generally allowed, as "master of the universe" Sherman McCoy, who comes a cropper after a hit-and-run accident, since his nice-guy act shows intriguing cracks. And even Bruce Willis does his best on a hiding to nothing as the drunken writer. It is funny in parts, agonising in others, and misses Wolfe's tone--but somehow its failures might make it as symptomatic of the long-gone excesses of the early 90s as the novel was of the 80s. --Kim Newman

Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By mehmet ozkan on 25 Sep 2002
Format: DVD
Bonfire of the vanities is clearly an underestimated movie. Tom Hanks and his mistress, Melanie Griffith, lose their way and accidentially kill a boy. Hanks gets the responsibility in order to hide his secret affair, but finds himself in the middle of a head hunt. Everybody wants this young, rich, succesful, guy's head for different reasons and the outcome is really satirical.
Great director Brian de Palma lets Hanks to mess things up, tells the story mostly from the eyes of a rotten journalist played by Bruce Willis and sums it up with a good final.
Tom Hanks in the middle of his filmographie, is not as powerful as in Philadelphia, Forrest Gump or Saving Private Ryan but this movie is certainly a step forward. In Bonfire of the Vanities you can see the coming performances after his immature acting stuff in movies like Big, The Man With One Red Shoe or Bachelor Party.
Melanie Griffith in one of her best performances, plays the selfish mistress who does anything to buy her way out. Bruce Willis is as usual. If you like him as David Addison in Moonlighting series, then you wont be disappointed with this one.
Solid performances from experienced actors like Morgan Freeman, Saul Rubinek and Donald Moffat is also welcomed. Dave Gruisin's musical score is good.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ms. E. Blankson VINE VOICE on 23 July 2004
Format: VHS Tape
when i first started watching this film i thought it was going to be very boring and long but i have to say that i found this film really funny and was laughing from half way through to the end. its not a great film but if you are up for some comedy and an average storyline its really good. Tom hanks is really good in it and so is Bruce willis. so watch this film like i said if you are up for a bit of a laugh.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Clipper 314 on 20 Sep 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
well worth the watch.. even if you've read the book first !.. although the story line is a bit different from the book it actually offers an alternative final scenario which is either more.. or just as fitting. I thoroughly enjoyed both and found the characters portrayals great fun, witty, and believable. Good fun with a sting in the message .. well worth it
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By heyjude on 2 Dec 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I read the reviews before ordering this DVD. It appeared that those who had not read the book loved it and those who had read the book thought the film a disappointment. I read the book first. The book is far more complex, pertinent and witty than the film but I think the film stands on its own as a well acted comedy. Because I knew that Tom Hanks took the lead in the film, as I read the book I actually saw him throughout in the part of Sherman McCoy, Master of the Universe - perfect casting! The Bruce Willis role was certainly adapted and changed from the book - but, in my opinion, it works in the context of the film - after all the book does have more than 700 pages - that would make for a rather long film! A highly recommended piece of entertainment.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jenny J.J.I. on 8 Feb 2008
Format: DVD
Personally, I watched the movie without having read the book, which could be seen as both a good and a bad thing. On one hand, it allows me to judge the film as exactly that - a film, with no other conflicting point of reference to cloud my opinions. On the other, it means I'm pretty much ignorant as to whether or not the screen version succeeds or fails in living up to its story's potential. 'The Bonfire Of The Vanities' is a good film: nothing more, nothing less. So why, then, was it so universally slated by critics at the time of its big screen release? The answer, it would seem, is the overwhelming popularity of the piece of literature it was based on, Tom Wolfe's novel of the same name.

This movie is played on the borderline "tragedy and comic" the result, in my opinion, is a very interesting mix of ironic situations. Sherman McCoy (Tom Hanks) is on top of his game and is the top dog in one of the top financial firms in the city. He has money in spades, a socialite wife, a Park Avenue apartment, a mistress and a very nice car. While out with that same mistress Maria (Griffith) in that same expensive car, Sherman takes a wrong turn and ends up in the Bronx where, in a moment of panic at being confronted by crowds of African Americans, Maria suddenly hits a black man and they drive off back to normal white society. Sadly for Sherman, this minor incident escalates when the boy goes into a coma and his car is identified as the one involved, Add to this a DA who desperately needs to win the ethnic vote by prosecuting a rich white person and a journalist who, desperate to get off skid row, talks up the story with a series of sensationalist headlines that twist the truth. As these factors all come into play, Sherman's tidy, rich, world starts to crumble.
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Format: DVD
Tom Hanks is too nice a guy to be believable as Sherman McCoy, the big shot "Master of the Universe" Wall Street trader. Bruce Willis has the acting ability of a wet sponge, and the urbane journalist he's supposed to be playing never really works. Melanie Griffiths can't quite get her accent right and at times looks like she's in an entirely different film to the rest of the cast.

It's not just the casting though, the whole production is a complete mess. You can read the full story about the film in the excellent book "The Devil's Candy" by Julie Salamon. It covers the fine details of exactly why such a widely acclaimed book didn't translate to anything more than a turkey of a film.

I'm giving the film two starts rather than one because of the excellently crafted opening scene. It covers a drunk Bruce Willis staggering through to an awards presentation in one continuous tracking shot. It has a similarity to a similar scene in Goodfellas and is probably better from a technical standpoint. In fact I'd have been a lot more satisfied if I'd have turned off the DVD at the end of this scene.
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