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The Fruit Machine [1987] [DVD]


Price: £9.11 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Emile Charles, Tony Forsyth, Robert Stephens, Clare Higgins, Bruce Payne
  • Format: PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Network
  • DVD Release Date: 16 July 2007
  • Run Time: 103 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000PMGRQ4
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 18,805 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Comedy-thriller about two gay scouse teenagers who witness a murder at a club called the Fruit Machine and flee to Brighton. Robbie Coltrane appears as an oversized drag queen called Annabelle.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By PM on 24 July 2007
Format: DVD
At last this film is finally available on DVD. Directed by Philip Saville (Stop the World I Want to Get Off and British TV classics The Life and Loves of a She-Devil, Boys from the Blackstuff and Count Dracula) and written by Frank Clarke (Letter to Brezhnev, Blonde Fist). Clarke followed up the success of Letter to Brezhnev with this sentimental thriller, effectively a love story, which could have taken its themes from a Smiths album: sexual ambiguity, loss of innocence, shattered dreams and...animal rights. Set in Liverpool, Michael (Tony Forsyth), a rough and ready streetwise rent boy on the run from a youth detention centre, befriends Eddie (Emile Charles), a naive dreamer and camp teenager who lives for glamorous film stars and stories of his mum auditioning for John Schlesinger in the 60s - but the tales of his mum are as false as her blond hair. After homophobic abuse from his brutal dad, Eddie joins Michael on the streets and they find a welcome, along with Liverpool's other waifs and strays, at the eponymous Fruit Machine, a gay nightclub where Michael's butch charms win him first prize in an amateur strip contest. But they are forced to keep running after they witness the grisly gangland murder of Annabelle (Robbie Coltrane), hostess of the Fruit Machine, with a knowing nod to Some Like It Hot. The boys find succour (in more ways than one) in the entourage of Vincent (Robert Stephens), a famous opera tenor who invites them to come to Brighton in return for sexual favours from Michael, determined to keep his hustling a secret from Eddie, whom he loves because of his innocence, something Michael, brought up in care, has never had.Read more ›
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By DaysGoneByFan on 9 Oct. 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I think the error is with the printing and not the DVD transfer. I've had this film on video for years and am sure it's only in mono. Certainly there's no indication on the video box that it's in stereo...

Mind, it's a shame it isn't because the score is very atmospheric and most of the sequences would have benefitted from a stereo soundtrack.

But, hey, we're talking about a 1985 Granada TV film, so I'd be surprised if it was made in stereo.

I'm very disappointed at the lack of extras. Even just ten minutes to see the two leads 20 years on and a few of the directors thoughts would have been great and inexpensive to make.

The film isn't perfect, as has already been noted, but it's still one of my favourites linking two towns I love (one of which is my home town) and even a bit of opera and worth 5 stars to me.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By PM on 30 Jan. 2005
Format: VHS Tape
Directed by Philip Saville (Stop the World I Want to Get Off and British TV classics The Life and Loves of a She-Devil, Boys from the Blackstuff and Count Dracula) and written by Frank Clarke (Letter to Brezhnev, Blonde Fist). Clarke followed up the success of Letter to Brezhnev with this sentimental thriller, effectively a love story, which could have taken its themes from a Smiths album: sexual ambiguity, loss of innocence, shattered dreams and...animal rights. Set in Liverpool, Michael (Tony Forsyth), a rough and ready streetwise rent boy on the run from a youth detention centre, befriends Eddie (Emile Charles), a naive dreamer and camp teenager who lives for glamorous film stars and stories of his mum auditioning for John Schlesinger in the 60s - but the tales of his mum are as false as her blond hair. After homophobic abuse from his brutal dad, Eddie joins Michael on the streets and they find a welcome, along with Liverpool's other waifs and strays, at the eponymous Fruit Machine, a gay nightclub where Michael's butch charms win him first prize in an amateur strip contest. But they are forced to keep running after they witness the grisly gangland murder of Annabelle (Robbie Coltrane), hostess of the Fruit Machine, with a knowing nod to Some Like It Hot. The boys find succour (in more ways than one) in the entourage of Vincent (Robert Stephens), a famous opera tenor who invites them to come to Brighton in return for sexual favours from Michael, determined to keep his hustling a secret from Eddie, whom he loves because of his innocence, something Michael, brought up in care, has never had.Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Ian watts on 30 July 2004
Format: VHS Tape
'The Fruit Machine' is one of the most original and refreshing films I have seen, combining a terrific storyline and a superb cast of actors, with outstanding performances from Robbie Coltrane, Robert Stevens and Claire Higgins; as well as the two young protagonists. This film is in turn witty, stylish and absolutely terrifying and deserves much more recognition than it received.
It is absolutely criminal that this sparkling example of British Film making at it's very best, has not been released on DVD.
Come on you Film Companies, re-master and re-release this wonderful film in a special presentation case so that it gets the much wider audience that it so richly deserves.
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