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The Night They Raided Minsky's [DVD]

Jason Robards , Britt Ekland , William Friedkin    Suitable for 12 years and over   DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
Price: £4.95 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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The Night They Raided Minsky's [DVD] + The Girl On The Boat [1962] [DVD] [1961] + What's Good for the Goose [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Jason Robards, Britt Ekland, Norman Wisdom, Forrest Tucker, Harry Andrews
  • Directors: William Friedkin
  • Producers: Norman Lear
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Studiocanal
  • DVD Release Date: 20 Oct 2008
  • Run Time: 99 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001D07QH6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 35,129 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Comedy starring Jason Robards, Norman Wisdom and Britt Ekland. Minsky's in New York is a popular 1920s burlesque theatre which is under threat of closure by the Society for the Suppression of Vice. Comedian Chick (Wisdom) and his straight man Raymond (Robards) sense an opportunity to save the theatre when they meet innocent Amish dancer Rachel (Ekland) who has run away from home. The two men attempt to humiliate the police by informing them that Minsky's will stage a show at midnight that will feature an indecent dance by 'Madamoiselle Fifi' (Ekland), but instead plan to stage an inoffensive Bible-inspired dance. However, chaos ensues when Rachel's father Jacob (Harry Andrews) turns up at the show.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
The lights dim. The curtain goes up. The girls are on stage. The spot hits the tux-wearing tenor, silver haired and a little plump.
"I have a secret recipe
Concocted with much skill
And once you've tried my special dish
You'll never get your fill...

"Take ten terrific girls, but only nine costumes, and you're cooking up something grand..."

The Night They Raided Minsky's is a valentine to the long-gone burlesque houses of the Twenties. Naughty, bawdy and surprisingly innocent, filled with chorus girls who might generously be called a little past their prime, with plenty of belly work, with comedians and their second bananas, with pratfalls, seltzer bottles and song and dance acts. This Norman Lear/William Friedkin/Ralph Rosenblum movie has it all. It even has a story. Most of all, it has some great songs by Charles Strouse and Lee Adams, wonderful performances by Jason Robards and Norman Wisdom, and a collection of pungent characters played by the likes of Elliot Gould, Forrest Tucker, Bert Lahr, Harry Andrews, Joseph Wiseman, Jack Burns, Denholm Elliot and Dexter Maitland. And we're there when history is made, as Britt Ekland playing an innocent Amish girl from Smoketown, Pennsylvania, who longs to perform her Bible dances on stage, inadvertently invents the strip tease.

Billy Minsky runs Minsky's Burlesque. Vance Fowler, secretary of New York's Society for the Suppression of Vice, is determined to close it down. Then Rachel Elizabeth Schpitendavel shows up. She's young. She's innocent. She's built. She catches the eye of headliner Raymond Paine (Jason Robards), a song, dance and straight man who works with his second banana, the small, mild and fall-down physical Chick Williams (Norman Wisdom). Paine wants Rachel to fall into his bed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This film is a real gem,it has a very strong story,a SUPERB cast at the top of their form and the kind of atmosphere that makes you think you are really there.I first saw this film almost 40 years ago and couldn't understand why I had never heard of it before.The fact that it has taken so long to become available on DVD is another of life's great mysteries.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant 21 April 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Stunning just couldn't switch off and have had to have it ripped out of my hands such was the compulsion to watch it.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars bumps and grinds 15 Jun 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
blowsy,slighty past their sell- by -date chorous "girls" who cant quite keep in step are, for me, the highlights in this movie.britte is ok,norman wisdom is an acquired taste but the rest of the movie and cast are top notch in this portrayal of the last days of burlesque.Some quite hilarious dance routines complete with bumps and grinds and some good period (as are some of the gags) features.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting 19 Nov 2011
By Sortean
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
An interesting film and its great to see Norman Wisdom in a different type of role. However, Norman looks lost to me - he somehow didn't seem to fit in with the rest of the cast. I found it painful to watch him as he just looked liked a duck out of water and I felt that he was trying too hard.
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