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Zorba The Greek [DVD] [1964]

Anthony Quinn , Alan Bates , George Viyadjis    Parental Guidance   DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
Price: 6.00 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Zorba The Greek [DVD] [1964] + Never On Sunday [DVD] + Driving Aphrodite [DVD] [2010]
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Product details

  • Actors: Anthony Quinn, Alan Bates, Irene Papas, Lila Kedrova, Sofiris Moustakas
  • Directors: George Viyadjis
  • Producers: Walter Lassally
  • Format: PAL
  • Subtitles: French, Hungarian, Polish, Italian, Portuguese, Arabic, Greek, Dutch, Hebrew, Bulgarian
  • 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: PG
  • Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: 9 May 2005
  • Run Time: 136 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0007D5G5E
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 28,062 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

An Englishman goes to Crete in order to open a family mine, and while there he comes across Zorba, a man with a sad past but a marvellous enthusiasm for life, which he tries to instill in the rather stuffy Englishman.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
By Lawrance M. Bernabo HALL OF FAME VINE VOICE
Format:VHS Tape
Before I left on trip to Greece I figured I should watch "Zorba the Greek" since this 1964 film is considered the quintessential "Greek" film. I have to admit my first reaction was to be glad I was not going to Crete, because the way the locals treated the beautiful widow (Irene Papas) and Madame Hortense (Lila Kedrova), the old prostitute, were outright horrific. But this is why people like us and young Basil (Alan Bates) need to meet up with somebody with a zest for life like Alexis Zorba (Anthony Quinn).
Basil is an Englishman of Greek extraction who goes to Crete to check out a mine he has inherited. Zorba attaches himself to Basil, ostensibly as a cook but clearly as a guide to the joys and tragedies of life. In terms of Quinn's performance the only thing you can really say is that before there was Robert Begnigni there was Zorba the Greek when it comes to Mediterranean men who provided inspirational madness. As Zorba tells Basil: "Dammit, boss, I like you too much not to say it. You've got everything except one thing. Madness! A man needs a little madness, or else...he never dares cut the rope and be free."
When they arrive on Crete it becomes clear the mine is not going to pan out for anybody. They move in with Madame Hortense, who is wooed by Zorba, who insists Basil go after the beautiful local widow. After these tragedies all that is left is Zorba's plan for bringing trees down from the top of the mountain, an endeavor obviously equally doomed to failure. This is why in the end there is only one thing a man can do, and it is in this cathartic conclusion that any and all sins of this film are absolved.
"Zorba the Greek" is written and directed by Michael Cacoyannis, based on the novel by Nikos Kazantzakis.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Despite its somewhat undeserved modern reputation as a bit of lightweight tourist bait, Zorba the Greek turns out to be a surprisingly dark and anarchic film - not so surprising when you consider that it's based on a novel by Nikos Katzanzakis, who also wrote The Last Temptation of Christ. Indeed, the film originally began with Anthony Quinn playing Zeus (or at least Zeus as Zorba sees him) in a deliberately theatrically artificial heaven in a prologue that can be found in the extras on the US DVD and Blu-ray editions (but not the less fortunate Region 2 PAL editions).

It certainly paints a less than flattering portrait of Cretan village life. One Sunday the villagers leave the church to harry and then kill a woman they blame for a suicide, and when ex-prostitute Lila Kedrova lies dying they cannot even wait for her to stop breathing to loot her hotel. Functioning like some leaderless medieval fiefdom in thrall to machismo and misogyny, it is as far from a good commercial for the Cretan tourist Board as you can imagine.

Similarly, Anthony Quinn's performance in the title role is more layered than its many parodies over the years would lead you to expect. A loser with a gift for life who inveigles his sway into working for Alan Bates' excellently underplayed half-English observer of life who has come to make a go of his father's mine, there's a genuine sense of laughter in the face of death and despair in his performance. More low-key than you would expect, it is all perfectly underlined by Mikos Theodorakis' surprisingly varied and versatile score and Walter Lassally's Oscar-winning cinematography.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best films ever 7 April 2006
By J.Haze
Quite simply one of the best films ever made, Antony Quinn is superb as Zorba and the rest of the cast too are excellent. DVD also has a biogrphy on Quinn and a two hour audio by the director on the making of the film.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars “Will you teach me to dance?” .... 7 Jun 2002
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
Basil, a young English writer of Greek ancestry, meets an older, free-spirited Greek peasant named Zorba on the island of Crete. While Zorba pursues a relationship with Madame Hortense, an aging French courtesan, the inhibited Basil summons up the courage to court a young widow. When Hortense comes down with pneumonia, the impoverished locals descend upon her like vultures, as she lies dying in Zorba's arms. Later, Basil inherits a mine, and he and Zorba plan to reopen it and use their earnings to help alleviate some of the area's poverty.
Winning seven Academy Awards, this classic black and white film also starred Irene Pappas and Lila Kedrova and was based upon the Nikos Kazantzakis novel.
Must see movie....
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Zorba the Greek 7 Aug 2011
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Revisiting this film from my early twenties was a real treat. A more mature viewing realised a much greater appreciation of the nuances of this production.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Zorba the Greek 19 May 2011
By Sizzler
Zorba the Greek is a classic movie which
I have seen many times over the years and just had to have it on DVD. Anthony Quinn plays the part of Zorba
magnificently and portrays the Cretan male mentality to perfection. The movie is funny and tragic,the
scenery beautiful to me as I have a love of
Crete anyway. A heartwarming movie which still has the
capacity to make me smile.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Anthony Quinn 's finest 27 July 2009
By Byron
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is frankly the most powerful film ever made by Mr.Quinn.His acting of Zorba touches unheard realms of realism.The rest of the cast is superb but pale before him.A must see classic.The essential Anthony Quinn.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars golden oldie
Epic film. So many different ways of seeing life. The triumphs and tribulations, romance and lost all shown with so much passion.
Published 25 days ago by pixie
5.0 out of 5 stars All-time favourite
This would be an art-house movie by today's standards. Black and white. Complex characterisation. Adult themes. Measured pace. Read more
Published 1 month ago by John Alsop
1.0 out of 5 stars Depressing film with little sunshine !
Had not really thought film would be black and white all through but even if it was it could not have lifted this over-rated caper.
Why is the cover of DVD in colour though ? Read more
Published 2 months ago by David Anderson
5.0 out of 5 stars this was a great purchase
this was a great purchase, I was delighted about the delivery of this CD and hope that next purchase will be the same
Published 3 months ago by john glide
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic film
This is a classic. Anthony Quinn played the part to perfection. The film also shows the reality of the poor and shows life not so very long ago.
Published 4 months ago by pa0179
4.0 out of 5 stars Great
A classic of its time…….very enjoyable with great messages in there. It would have been so much better in colour to make more of the scenery
Published 4 months ago by Jason Sloan
1.0 out of 5 stars terrible
Having just spent 3 months in Greece, I bought this to see what it is about. Truly the worst film
Published 5 months ago by john margarson
4.0 out of 5 stars As remembered
Anthony Quinn does the role to perfection . Good to see this before going to Crete though a bit long.
Published 5 months ago by Dympna M. Kelly
5.0 out of 5 stars Zorba the Greek.
It is a Powerful film.The story and the actors and the theme music. I still watch it occasionally and still enjoy it every time.Noel. Byrne.
Published 8 months ago by Noel Byrne
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic
Anyone who has never seen this should try to catch it at some point. Quinn is superb, and a young Alan Bates more than held his own.
Published 9 months ago by martin9325
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