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The Damned United [DVD] [2009]

Michael Sheen , Timothy Spall , Tom Hooper    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (133 customer reviews)
Price: £4.96 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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The Damned United [DVD] [2009] + Clough - The Brian Clough Story  [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Michael Sheen, Timothy Spall, Jim Broadbent, Colm Meaney, Elizabeth Carling
  • Directors: Tom Hooper
  • Format: PAL, Anamorphic, Widescreen, Dolby, Digital Sound, Subtitled
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Hindi
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Audio Description: English
  • 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: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 31 Aug 2009
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (133 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001TV0AHW
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,340 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

From the Academy Award-nominated writer of The Queen and Frost/Nixon, The Damned United is based on the incredible true story of Brian Clough, one of England’s greatest soccer managers and his 44 controversial days at the helm of reigning champs Leeds United. Michael Sheen (Frost/Nixon, Underworld: Rise of the Lycans and Twilight Saga: New Moon) triumphs as Clough starring alongside a winning ensemble cast that includes Timothy Spall (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire), Colm Meaney (Layer Cake) and Jim Broadbent (Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince). This inspiring and humorous sports drama is about the power of friendship in the face of adversity and the stubborn will of one man to play by his own rules.


Based on the best-selling book of the same name, The Damned United is the story of one of Britain’s finest ever football managers, Brian Clough, and his curtailed 44-day reign at the helm of Leeds United. It turns out it’s also the tale of his formative years at Derby County, the story of his rivalry with previous Leeds United boss Don Revie, and ultimately, the exploration of his relationship with his assistant, Peter Taylor.

The film explores the story by moving backwards and forwards in time, but always at the heart of The Damned United is its trump card. Michael Sheen has already richly deserved an abundance of plaudits in his acting career, not least for his superb portrayal of David Frost in Frost/Nixon, and he carves out another terrific performance here. Taking on the challenge of playing the larger than life Clough, his work here is tremendous, and the highlight of an already-strong cast that also features Timothy Spall and Colm Meaney.

On the screen, the story of The Damned United is actually distilled into quite a straightforward tale, albeit one considerably enhanced by its aforementioned cast. It wisely keeps its running time trimmed, and while you can’t help but suspect that there’s much to the story that’s not explored here, it’s a good, solid telling of a quite extraordinary tale. Sheen won’t, of course, attract Oscar-attention for such a resoundingly British role, but surely his time, on this latest piece of evidence, will come. --Jon Foster

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Seconds Out 6 Sep 2009
Don Revie and Brian Clough were great footballers and great managers, both from Middlesbrough (about 10 miles north of where I grew up) but the film sets them up as tragic enemies in a reputational boxing match in which stinging blow after blow is landed by each to the benefit of neither. David Pearce's novel has Clough as the admirer of Revie who turns against his hero. They battle it out at key points of Clough's early career at Derby County, and at his short career at Leeds itself, and finish it off on TV. Revie leaves for disappointment at England, Clough to be reborn at Nottingham Forest, neither are ever the same again.

Michael Sheen is scary as Clough, Colm Meaney brilliant as Revie, both sound like their counterparts and even begin to look like the originals. The Leeds squad is recognisable even to me at this remove; and so is the pre-Thatcher world of self-made men running British sport with all the witless charm that they ran their businesses. The attitudes, the accents, the fashions and the locations are spot on; yet this is not a sports film, you see very little soccer, it's an old fashioned tragedy about rivalry and hubris, about genius and the deadening effect of the mediocre types who seem to run sport (as they run life). The cast are brilliant and the result a great tale.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By moo moo
Brilliant film and Michael Sheen and Timothy Spall play there parts amazingly well. Sheen has proved here what a world-class actor he is in playing 'old big head' Brian Clough.
The only negative is some of the deleted scenes, especially the one when he comes in at half time and makes the players drink a bottle of brandy after a shocking first half against Leeds Utd. It just goes straight to Clough in his office which to any non football fan will make no sense at all as we are used to seeing managers in the dugout. Little things like that take the shine of it a little but there is no doubt its got a good plot with fantastic actors who pull off there roles exceptionally well.

Michael Sheen for the next James Bond??? Stranger things have happened (Derby County winning the first division for one!!!)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A well delivered movie about football 8 Sep 2009
The Damned United is a well delivered and an excellent portrayal movie about football set in the 1960's to the 1970's. The movie was completely rented out on the weekend. Even returning on Monday, there were only 6 copied available in the selves. This proves football is a very popular sport in this country.

The subject matter of Damned United is about Brian Clough's managerial career at Derby Country and Leeds. He was remembered as a dynamic, outspoken and controversial figure to embrace English football. The movie looks at Brian as a person and manager. He was an over-ambitious manager, who wanted to do well for club, but it did not go well with the board and players, but it achieved results. The movie unfolds drama on and off the field. The area of professional football is nicely captured in the movie with the typical 1960's and 1970's settings. It adds realism to the movie.

Michael Sheen offers a superb performance as the outspoken Brian Clough, but maybe misunderstood. The Damned United is one best movie made about football ever made. I like the way it has shown real coverage of Brian Clough into the movie. This makes the movie feel real as if the events are occurring. The movie provides elements of drama and entertainment for viewers. It is real treat for football fans, as Brian Clough represents one of the greatest club managers. It is an interesting account and hugely absorbing with quality acting and great settings.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Damned United, damned good film 1 Nov 2009
Those of us of a certain age will remember Brian Clough; his arrogance, his conceit; his brilliance. It has become a cliche, but nonetheless true, he was the best manager England never had. This film captures that magic perfectly.

Michael Sheen plays the part extremely well and is always believable as the main character but it is perhaps in the casting of the supporting players that the whole era is recreated so realistically. With the exception of Timothy Spall (a fine performance but he looks nothing like Graham Taylor) the rest of the cast make you believe you are there, at Elland Road or the Baseball Ground, all those years ago.

I've watched the DVD three times now and each time I have seen a facet of this incredibly complex man that I didn't notice on my previous viewing. You don't have to be a football fan to enjoy the film, but if you are you will be totally captivated.
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By Mr. Stuart Bruce TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
This is another nostalgic-yet-gritty film about tough Yorkshiremen, but "The Damned United" manages to avoid most of the cliches and come up with something new.

Timothy Spall and Jim Broadbent are, as ever, excellent, but they're not really challenging themselves here. They're practically playing themselves and letting Michael Sheen steal the limelight with his 99% perfect impersonation of Brian Clough. Clough is portrayed not as a one-dimensional joke figure (as he seemed in the media most of the time) but as a truly warm, multi-faceted guy who was driven, determined, cocky and also quite tortured in his way. It's a rich portrayal and the film is practically a one-man show.

Contrary to other reviewers, I'd have to say that while you don't have to have an encyclopaedic knowledge of football to appreciate the film, the film is definitely about football, and if football bores you, so will this movie about it.

No love story or feelgood happy ending is applied- not that you'd expect it to be in a story based in real-life events, but you can never tell with movies nowadays.

The DVD extras include a whole stack of deleted scenes- a whole sub-plot was removed from the movie, which thanks to those deleted scenes is helpfully reinserted. It's worth watching to get an extra element to the story, yet it would have made the overall film too long and it was the right move to cut them.

The DVD is packed with other extras- interviews with cast, raw rushes from some of the Clough interview imitations, and so on. A very nicely packed DVD of a very watchable film.
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