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The Laramie Project [DVD]

Christina Ricci , Steve Buscemi , Moisés Kaufman    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
Price: £6.33 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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The Laramie Project [DVD] + The Meaning of Matthew: My Son's Murder in Laramie, and a World Transformed
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Product details

  • Actors: Christina Ricci, Steve Buscemi, Kathleen Chalfant, Laura Linney, Peter Fonda
  • Directors: Moisés Kaufman
  • Writers: Andy Paris, Kelli Simpkins, Amanda Gronich, Barbara Pitts, Greg Pierotti
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: 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: 15
  • Studio: Uca
  • DVD Release Date: 7 July 2003
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00009P9M3
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 61,703 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



Even though The Laramie Project has been edited down from almost three hours (the original length of the play) to a lean 96 minutes, the harrowing nature of the subject matter--the brutal murder of Matthew Shepard--and the clarity of the voices of the inhabitants of Laramie, Wyoming, give this film a remarkable emotional power. The Laramie Project was created from over 200 interviews conducted with Laramie residents before, during, and after the trials of the two boys who killed Shepard; the interviews create an amazing cross-section of American views on homosexuality, religion, class, privacy, and so much more besides. Even though it features an all-star cast--Steve Buscemi, Janeane Garofalo, Christina Ricci, Peter Fonda, and Laura Linney are only a few of the recognisable faces--the material has not been glamorised and the performances are both honest and intimate. Even abbreviated, it's a remarkable piece of work. --Bret Fetzer

Product Description

Selected as the opening night premiere at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival, The Laramie Project is a ground-breaking film based on the true story of a town’s loss of innocence following the murder of a 21 year old University of Wyoming student.

Moises Kaufman (writer and director) and members of New York’s Tectonic Theatre Project went to Laramie, Wyoming after the murder of Matthew Shepard. This is a film version of the play they wrote based on more than 200 interviews they conducted in Laramie. It mixes real news reports with actors portraying friends, family, cops, killers and other Laramie residents in their own words. It concludes with a Laramie staging of Angels in America a year after Matthew Shepard’s death.

Customer Reviews

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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tough stuff 26 Aug 2003
By maz
As long as you're human, you can't help but be touched by the events surrounding the making of this film.
In 1998, Matthew Shepard was brutally beaten and left for dead. Five days later he died, and Laramie bacame one of the most talked about towns in America - the reason - Matthew was gay.
The beauty of the Laramie Project is that it doesn't focus on the murder of Matthew itself, but on the aftermath, and the lives of those left confused by events they thought could never happen in their town.
Stunning performances by a talented cast as well as some actual news footage make this film compelling viewing. I came away both horrified and touched by the senselessness and beauty of human nature, a theme this film juxtaposes effortlessly.
The Laramie Project is tough viewing, but definitely worth making time for.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful 10 Sep 2005
This film really touched me, it was really well done and it's such an effective method, we never meet Matthew yet through the expieriences and emotions conveyed by all the other characters you learn so much about him and his take on life. I recommend this film very highly and for those who are expecting it to be violent, you never see any images of Matthew beaten etc. which I think is what makes this film so wonderful, that it doesn't try and shock you into thinking about the case, it does that well enough through the powerful emotions and stories told.
[...] Something to have a look at if you want to follow up your knowledge.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must see! 29 Dec 2003
Format:VHS Tape
Having heard about this film through film magazines I decided I would give it a go. And i wasnt disappointed! The film is beautifully done with an ensemble cast as impressive as any major Hollywood film (I'm thinking Magnolia).
We never meet the victim, Matthew Shepherd, but we learn so much about him. We follow his last days on the earth, from visiting a bar through to his remaining hours. Actors play the residents of Laramie, who talk about their experiences and thoughts of the murder. Interwoven into the story are real life news broadcasts from the time of the murder which hit home the reality of this story.
I defy anyone to watch this and not feel a little emotional. Top marks goes to the scene in the courtroom where Shepherd's dad talks to the jury. This scene will bring a tear to even the most cynical of eyes!
Watch this, enjoy this, and think about it. Films like this do not come around too often!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Distressing Masterpiece 26 Nov 2006
The Laramie Project is an awakening and significant film. It concentrates on the true story of Matthew Shepard, a young homosexual man murdered for his sexuality by two boys of similar age to himself. The interviews based on real life residents of Laramie along with the details surrounding Matthews's brutal murder evoke reflection, shock and mournfulness for the viewer. It is an emotional piece of work, highlighting the ever present prejudices existing within contemporary society. The film acts as a disturbing commemoration of a tragic tale that should not be forgotten. Special features include interviews with cast members and the residents they played, interestingly not just about the making of the film, but about their thoughts on the issues dealt with and how they felt about playing these characters. A definite must see, with a big box of tissues at hand!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
"The Laramie Project" is an adaptation of the play of the same name, written by Moises Kaufman and based on the interviews he and his group had in 1998 with many of Laramie's inhabitants, after the callous beating up of Matthew Shepard in that relatively small town of Wyoming. Matthew, a young man that was living in Laramie and that happened to be gay, was a victim, and became a symbol. But as another reviewer said, he was first and foremost a human being that deserved to live.

Matthew died due to the injuries received in what was defined as a hate crime. He was gay, and two men took exception to it, beating him up and leaving him tied to a fence. The man that discovered him the following day thought at first he was a scarecrow. He was so disfigured that he just didn't seem a person any more. Matthew was taken to a hospital, where he stayed in a comma until he died, a week later.

The interviews allow us to witness what the people of Laramie were thinking regarding this event, something closely linked to their views on religion, homosexuality, tolerance and a lot more. One character said something that made a big impact on me, and that explains a lot: "I guess I didn't understand the magnitude with which some people hate".

On the whole, I think this is an excellent film, and I am sorry I didn't watch it before. I strongly recommend it to you, as a great film with a good message.
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