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Velvet Goldmine [DVD] [1998]

58 customer reviews

Price: £3.24 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Ewan McGregor, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Christian Bale, Toni Collette, Eddie Izzard
  • Directors: Todd Haynes
  • Writers: Todd Haynes, James Lyons
  • Producers: Bob Weinstein, Christine Vachon, Christopher Ball, Harvey Weinstein, Michael Stipe
  • Format: Anamorphic, 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: Vci
  • DVD Release Date: 7 Jun. 2004
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004CYF6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 30,672 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

DVD Special Features:
Full motion menu
Scene selection
Theatrical trailer
Behind the Glam & the Glitter
Picture Show/Photo Library
Printable Photo Library

Aspect ratio: 16:9 anamorphic / 4:3 full fram
Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital 5.1 / Dolby Surround

From Amazon.co.uk

Somewhat misleadingly described by many as a mock-biopic based on the life of David Bowie, Velvet Goldmine is so much more than that. Journalist Arthur Stuart (Christian Bale) who sets out to discover whatever happened to Ziggy Stardust-like Brian Slade (Jonathan Rhys-Meyers), the famous bisexual glam star who crashed and burned spectacularly, but in the process helped Arthur awaken his own sexuality. It's an insane homage to 1970s glam rock in the UK as only American, who knew the movement from a distance, would make; it's a tribute to film director Nicolas Roeg's best work, particularly Performance and the Bowie-vehicle The Man Who Fell to Earth; it's a sci-fi movie about an alternative reality (the film's "present" is a 1984 that never existed and frustratingly never clearly explained); it's a queer Citizen Kane with lashings of eye-glitter, a complete mess, an absolute delight and a chance to see Ewan McGregor naked in case you didn't catch him in The Pillow Book as the Iggy Pop-like Curt Wild, Slade's lover/protégé.

Director Todd Haynes, who made the incredibly spare Safe and a biopic about Karen Carpenter with Barbie dolls, crams in everything--including the kitchen sink, all the washing-up and half the larder--as if terrified he'll never get another chance to shoot even a commercial again. The pacing drags like catwalk-queen's glittery taffeta train at times, but then glorious swooping musical numbers and clever bits of allusive business arrive that will brighten the day of many a pop-fan and film-buff. Never anything less than ruthlessly inventive and demanding of patience and an open mind, it's one for connoisseurs. Viewers who prefer easy-viewing eye candy are well advised to stick with fluff like Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. --Leslie Felperin --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 26 Mar. 2002
Format: DVD
The acting is fantastic - Jonathan Rhys Meyers looking very young lends himself wonderfully to the asexual Brian Slade, and there's the odd naked shot (not enough of him though girls!) to keep you interested. Ewan McGregor is dashingly good and the supporting cast including Toni Collette, Eddie Izzard and Placebo do their parts full justice. The hair and makeup on Toni Collette is especially effective at charting the passage of time. And of course Christian Bale captures the essence of fandom perfectly in his role as Arthur Stuart.
The music is fantastic with Rhys Meyers performing many of his songs (and he's a pretty good singer!) as well as a couple by Ewan, more recently known for his contribution to Moulin Rouge!'s music. Also present are a selection of other songs such as "Make Me Smile" and "20th Century Boy" (ah, we love Placebo!) fitting the era and atmosphere - though I wasn't even born then so perhaps I am less critical than someone who remembers Bowie's greatness!
I also loved the way the film was put together. The jolting touches of memory and somewhat irregular presentation as Arthur digs out the truth lead the viewer to conclusions and provide for an intriguing storyline (ripped straight out of Citizen Kane). The music videos are great to watch and revisit via the chapter selection and the documentary on the DVD is also pretty good although in my opinion was too much about the era and not enough about the film!
All in all, get this film if you're into slightly alternative cinema, glam rock or just gay issues :) There are some wonderful lines from Brian on bisexuality but you'll have to wait and see them for yourself :)
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Rosy Egg on 25 Aug. 2008
Format: DVD
As I have exhausted my video version I am going to buy it on dvd. I can not understand the bad reviews this gets. It is a fantastic view of underground and glam rock loosely based on famous figures but having its own identity. The music is good, the fantasy is good and the actors are good. Yes, the story is unbelievable but so what? All in all this film is good fun and one that can be watched again and again.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By M. McGhee on 15 Jun. 2009
Format: DVD
I cannot comprehend the confusion that this quirky and unconventional movie provokes in the minds of some people. I love this film, it's sexy, fun, aesthetically pleasing, and deliciously over the top.
The connection with Oscar Wilde and his childhood ambition to become a 'pop idol' spawns the idea that the classic poets were the originators of the artistic sex, drugs, rock n' roll lifestyle that is explored in the movie. The plot concerning the brooch is not intended to be historically accurate, but instead adds a beauty to the story, and acts as a motif that connects past and present events. The film uses fantastical imagery (including a flying saucer), which adds a surreal edge. The film doesn't imply that homosexuals are the spawn of aliens (as another reviewer suggested!)...this indeed would be extremely far-fetched. There are lots of references to heaven and the stars, which is an idea employed by poets during the enlightenment, implying that the characters have stumbled upon their own divine movement, adding to the idea of revolution and freedom.
They are loosely based on real rock stars, but concentrates more on the musical love affair with America and England.
Love the faux seventies music and glamerous costumes, I can't understand the bad reviews.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Spike Owen TOP 500 REVIEWER on 10 Aug. 2012
Format: DVD
It's 1984 and newspaper reporter Arthur Stuart is assigned to writing a piece about the disappearance of legendary Brit Glam Rocker, Brian Slade. Who after rising to the very top of the super stardom tree, chose to kill off his stage alter ego, Maxwell Demon, and subsequently killed off his career in the process. The Glam Rock era is one that Arthur knows well, in fact back at the time of the genre explosion he was very much on the scene, his life, Brian Slade's and wild American rocker, Curt Wild, are all linked by decadence and outrageous fulfilment!

There is no getting away from it, Velvet Goldmine divides film lovers across the spectrum, some folk are genuinely baffled by it, others (such as myself) think it's close to being genius, while some cinematic observers want to throw up at the mere mention of the film! I once engaged in a conversation with a fellow cinephile who positively hated the film with a passion, it was clear that we both watched a very different movie, nothing he said sounded remotely like the film I had watched and adored. Here I am after my third viewing thinking that I'm still right and that Velvet Goldmine demands repeat viewings to fully comprehend director Todd Haynes outlandish homages.

This is not remotely close to being a true story of the era, but it certainly has its finger on the pulse as regards how the genre evolved and lit up so many a dull dole day for many many people. Some instances and characters are based around factual things, I mean you would have to seriously know nothing about music to not see the David Bowie and Iggy Pop structured core on show here.
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