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The Ladykillers [DVD] [2004]

Tom Hanks , Marlon Wayans , Ethan Coen , Joel Coen    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
Price: £3.98 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Tom Hanks, Marlon Wayans, Irma P. Hall, J.K. Simmons, Tzi Ma
  • Directors: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen
  • Writers: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen, William Rose
  • Producers: Barry Josephson, Barry Sonnenfeld, David Diliberto
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English, Vietnamese
  • 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: Walt Disney Studios HE
  • DVD Release Date: 25 Oct 2004
  • Run Time: 104 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0002TW72S
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 12,955 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Coen brothers' remake of the 1955 Ealing comedy classic starring Alec Guiness, displaced from the English suburbs of the original to the American Southern Bible Belt. Tom Hanks stars as Professor Goldthwait Higginson Dorr, a charming and loquacious Southern professor with dubious credentials who rents a room from black Baptist churchgoing lady Marva Munson (Irma P. Hall). She agrees to let Dorr use her basement to rehearse with his medieval music ensemble. What she doesn't yet know is that the 'musicians' Dorr has collected are in fact hardened yet bumbling criminals (who give a whole new meaning to the phrase 'thick as thieves'). Dorr and his gang have plotted to dig an underground tunnel from Mrs Munson's basement to rob the nearby cash storage office of a riverboat casino. However, circumstances - and the old lady - foil the gang at every turn.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Coens just don't get the joke 2 Aug 2006
By Trevor Willsmer HALL OF FAME TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
Sometimes it only takes a single mistake to destroy a movie. The joke in The Ladykillers is a very simple one: namely, that a sweet tiny little old lady who lives in a world of her own and who wouldn't hurt a fly not only thwarts a gang of criminals who want to kill her and ends up with their ill-gotten gains but does it without even knowing it. Unfortunately, the Coens just didn't seem to get it and make one disastrous change in their remake: Mrs Lopsidey is now a huge, loud, obnoxious, hateful and extremely violent woman who you want dead on sight. Not only do the crooks never stand a chance, but within seconds of her first scene you have no desire to watch a minute more. When she waxes lyrical about her dead husband in a failed attempt to create some sympathy for her, Groucho's old line "He's not dead, he's hiding" springs all too readily to mind.

Things improve slightly when Tom Hanks' loquacious decayed Southern gentleman appears, but he's fighting a losing battle with her spite and vindictiveness. They then compound the error by casting Marlon Wayans, whose ability to spout obscenities is almost miraculously untouched by the ability to make any of them remotely funny. Thus the stage is set for the Coens' worst movie, and one that alternates too few genuinely funny scenes - most involving J.K. Simmons and Tic Ma's early scenes before the script run out of good ideas for them - with moments of pure torture (the less said about Ryan Hurst's painfully misfired performance as the dumb lummox of the gang the better). By the time the miscreants finally put their minds to lady killing, the Coens have long since run out of ammunition, making for a flat, unfunny and painfully unimaginative last half-hour.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Misses the mark by some margin 12 Aug 2014
By Mr Baz #1 REVIEWER #1 HALL OF FAME
Format:DVD
I recently re-visited this film in the hope my first viewing overlooked something and was unfair in my initial opinion of it. However not much has changed I still feel the film falls firmly into the category of "no don't do it" for re-makes.

It was inevitable that this re-make would be compared to the well respected and much loved original 1955 film, that was a hard act to follow esp with such a stand out cast including Peter Sellers , Alec Guinness, Cecil Parker, Herbert Lom and the innocent lovable Katie Johnson as Mrs Wilberforce. Even the minor cast roles had heavyweights like Jack Warner and Frankie Howerd. In many ways a cast that's so strong you'd be almost mad to try to re-do the story in modern times. It just worked and remains a classic (often overused but in this case entirely justified) to this day

Truth is I like the Coen brothers they have done some excellent productions (Fargo, O Brother, Where Art Thou? and others) This sadly stands out as their weakest effort to date.

The story is taken to more modern times with a slight variation, the team headed by Tom Hanks (Goldthwaite Higginson Dorr a well mannered educated man), this time they plan to tunnel their way into a Casino by renting a room from Irma P. Hall (Marva Munson) an elderly widow. Again the cover is the music rehearsals just like the first film. On paper there is nothing wrong with the concept (a minor variation of a proven story) Ultimately the film fails on many levels though.

Firstly Hanks, who is no question a fine actor this role is just not for him the main lead character doesn't grab you, and you don't feel connected to him.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BrownPolar Verdict 8 Oct 2012
Format:DVD
Interestingly evocative of `O' Brother Where Art Thou', this hilarious and light hearted parody of the staunchly religious life of ordinary folk in the American deep south is another testament to Coen Brothers' love for the humorous characterisation of common people under bizarre circumstances.

Predictably shunned by the critics as just "funny and enjoyable, but disappointing for Coens' standards", this is yet another example which proves that the two brothers make films for the sheer joy of it rather than to please anyone, let alone the critics, who usually find Coen films bewilderingly difficult to analyse, label and categorise to please themselves as they usually do!

Exquisitely crafted with the use of thoughtfully and painstakingly constructed sets, with imaginative imagery that Roger Deakins effortlessly captures form the very first frame to the last, and with spirited and satisfying contributions from the cast, `The Lady Killers' is as refreshing and heartrending as a summer breeze, while being uproariously funny at the same time.

BrownPolar
January 2008
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
The Ladykillers--remade with irritable bowel movements? WHY?

What a falling off was there! Run, do not walk to the Alec Guinness/Katie Johnson version to see what was so foully trampled on here.

Two stars ... because the professor is on rare occasions slightly amusing, so I cannot entirely despise the film.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Just wish I could give it a 0 21 May 2010
Format:DVD
Absolutely dreadful. The original is so good and this is so bad, it's worth watching just to compare and marvel. Just mind boggling.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Leave It Alone! 30 Oct 2010
Format:DVD
The normally safe hands of Tom Hanks and the Coen brothers failed to conjure up the magic of the original Ealing classic The Ladykillers [DVD] [1955]

This remake possibly suffers from the fact that it is a remake of a classic. Perhaps if you haven't seen the original, it will be possible to view it in a more open-minded and sympathetic manner than I and thousands of other people have managed. However, I have to wonder, why did they bother doing a remake of something that was already perfect?!

I think that all fans of the original Ealing comedies must now pray that Holywood (or anyone else for that matter), never contemplate remaking Kind Hearts And Coronets [DVD] [1949], which is the best of the best Ealing comedies. If it's a classic, leave it alone!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
nice movie if you like to spend time it funey
Published 1 month ago by chaz
3.0 out of 5 stars A good film but dissapointed that i received the disc in ...
A good film but dissapointed that i received the disc in a plastic sleeve and not in the dvd case.
Published 1 month ago by Heather Manson
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
This mediocre and unfunny film is an utter disgrace.
Published 1 month ago by Frank598
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great, thank you so much
Published 2 months ago by Sharon Griffiths
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
not as good as original
Published 2 months ago by psop
4.0 out of 5 stars I have not seen the original
Bit of a confession, that but I enjoyed this version. Clearly farcical by intent, Tom Hanks played the part well and the rest of the cast were also good. Read more
Published 8 months ago by D. Allen
2.0 out of 5 stars No
I went thru a stage of watching all coen bros movies searching for that elusive good one. this isn't it.
Published 9 months ago by kevin brookes
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent story
Although this film was criticised by many, it contains a very talented cast and proved to be a success with the comedy and storyline.
Published 9 months ago by Reece Cassar
4.0 out of 5 stars A BRAVE TRY
Given that we already have a Brit classic, this could have been a horror, but it's pretty good. Well produced, competent if a bit cliched acting, but it works.
Published 10 months ago by M COX
1.0 out of 5 stars Didn't work
The disc wouldn't play in a DVD player or my laptop but for 3 quid I couldn't be bothered to return it!
Published 13 months ago by Pen Name
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