Customer Reviews


 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very funny film
Why "1941" never got the acclaim it deserves is a mystery. Maybe it is because many Americans find it hard to laugh at themselves. There are so many memorable moments (two men and a dummy on top of a ferris wheel, the submarine sinking the tank, Robert Stack shedding a tear at "Dumbo" whilst the world outside the cinema is going mad, the amazing aircraft chase through...
Published on 26 Feb. 2003

versus
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars In widescreen .. finally ??
Just a quick question for another who grabs this - IS IT enhanced for widescreen TVs ???

The only other version has been a poor non 16x9 US Region 1. And could someone please details the extras (one suspects that it will just be the doco from Region 1)
Published on 5 Nov. 2009 by tonyg


‹ Previous | 1 26 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very funny film, 26 Feb. 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: 1941 [VHS] (VHS Tape)
Why "1941" never got the acclaim it deserves is a mystery. Maybe it is because many Americans find it hard to laugh at themselves. There are so many memorable moments (two men and a dummy on top of a ferris wheel, the submarine sinking the tank, Robert Stack shedding a tear at "Dumbo" whilst the world outside the cinema is going mad, the amazing aircraft chase through Hollywood which is Spielberg's self-parody of "Star Wars"), but it has to be John Belushi as the fighter pilot that sticks in the mind. One of the few films that I have watched more than once.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars madcap insane comedy romp, 21 April 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: 1941 [VHS] (VHS Tape)
This has to be my favourite film of all time. Although never given the true credit it deserves this is one of steven spielbergs funniest movies. With a brilliant ensemble cast, John Belushi steals the show. His portrayal of a slightly less than sane fighter pilot will have everyone in stitches. The film follows a number of storys happening in 1941. From the teenager trying to get the girl, to the patriotic american ready to do anything to protect his country. All the storys come together to form the best mad-cap ending since "it's a mad, mad, mad, mad world". Unmissable!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A gloriously self-indulgent monument to excess, 25 Oct. 2011
By 
Trevor Willsmer (London, England) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: 1941 [DVD] [1979] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] (DVD)
NB: There are two different versions of this film - the two hour theatrical version, released on PAL DVD in Europe by Sony, and the two-and-a-half hour pre-release director's cut released on NTSC DVD in the US by Universal. Both include the same extras.

Lampooning the paranoia that swept America in the weeks after Pearl Harbor, 1941 is a hard film to make a case for, but it's the kind of film you can like in spite of its many flaws. Parts of it (much of the first half of the movie, in fact) are truly atrociously directed and despite a script by Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, Spielberg's epic live-action cartoon is rarely ever particularly funny. A big part of the blame comes down to Spielberg's inability to properly time or stage many of the gags at that point in his career. But what Spielberg CAN do is stage the spectacle, which the film has in spades, as if compensating for the lack of jokes with an excess of explosions and destruction. And excess is what 1941 is ultimately all about. It may not be terribly good, but there's still a lot of fun to be had amid all the wreckage.

A kind of It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad War or The Japanese Are Coming, The Japanese Are Coming with the chaos triggered by Toshiro Mifune's off-course out-of-date Japanese submarine surfacing off the West Coast and determining not to go back until he can find something honourable to "blow the **** out of," it follows a group of disparate characters of various degrees of dementia through the resulting riots, chases, plane crashes and general wanton destruction: John Belushi's insanely gung-ho fighter pilot, Warren Oates' even more insanely paranoid colonel who makes Sterling Hayden in Dr Strangelove look rational, Tim Matheson's randy military aide determined to join the mile-high club with Nancy Allen, Dan Aykroyd's walking technical manual-cum-motor pool sergeant, Ned Beatty's family man who can't resist trying out the anti-aircraft gun in his back yard, Murray Hamilton's aircraft observer stuck atop a Ferris Wheel with Eddie Deezen (looking alarmingly like a pre-bearded Spielberg) and his ventriloquist's dummy, Slim Pickens' unfortunately named Christmas tree salesman, Bobby Di Cicco's jitterbugging fool and Treat Williams' barely human egg-hating incarnation of the Tasmanian Devil among them. Christopher Lee, Lionel Stander, Lorraine Gary, John Candy, Elisha Cook Jr and Mickey Rourke, making his screen debut, are in there as well, with cameos by Sam Fuller, John Landis and even an unbilled James Caan as a sailor in the riot if you look quickly. But the film's easily stolen by Robert Stack's General Stillwell, crying as he watches Dumbo while a riot rages in the streets outside, a beautifully underplayed oasis of unimpressed sanity in the eye of the storm.

In all honesty, neither the 146-minute director's cut available on Universal's US DVD nor the two-hour theatrical version on Sony's European PAL DVD works particularly well. While about ten minutes of footage from the uncut version could have been usefully included in the far too frenetically paced theatrical version, much of the deleted footage simply doesn't work on any level: certainly scenes like the misfired setpiece built around stealing a Zoot Suit from a department store never translate from the page to the screen - you can see why it should be funny in principle, but it falls horribly flat in practice. It's not until the halfway mark and the jitterbug contest, still one of Spielberg's most accomplished setpieces, that the film really starts to find its feet (though an unsung Heath-Robinsonish series of accidents that contrive to revive an unconscious Treat Williams is almost equally impressive). From that point on, the film goes into full-on destructive overkill mode with all the frenetic pace and appetite for destruction of a classic Warner Bros. or Tex Avery cartoon, all to the accompaniment of one of John Williams' best scores.

The last big Hollywood feature to use a huge amount of model work, the special effects are variable but the mechanical ones are often generally impressive, whether it's a dogfight over the streets of Los Angeles, the Santa Monica Pier Ferris Wheel rolling into the sea or a cliffside house falling into the ocean. And it's not all models: one gag with Belushi's plane landing at a gas station for a refill, recycled from Spielberg's first screenplay, Ace Eli and Rodger of the Skies and later recycled again in Octopussy, is played out for real, as is a plane crash on Hollywood Boulevard (they literally catapulted the plane onto the backlot set!). Of course, with such an emphasis on chaos and carnage it's pretty clear that, as Spielberg admits, it's only going to be loved by a small and insane group of people, but it's one of those once-in-a-lifetime folies de grandeur that has to be seen at least once just for the sheer demented, wasteful audacity of it all.

There's a particularly impressive extras package, most carried over from the film's Laser Disc release: 14 deleted and alternate scenes; 101-minute documentary The Making of 1941; stills and marketing galleries; reviews; 2 teaser trailers and full theatrical trailer. Both the Universal and Sony releases are in the original 2.35:1 widescreen ratio, with the NTSC version non-anamorphic, the PAL anamorphic. The NTSC version also includes an isolated score track not included on the PAL version.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I love this film!!!!!!!!!!!, 11 Jan. 2010
This review is from: 1941 [DVD] (DVD)
For those who are curious, here are the details of the Dvd.

This Dvd features the original, shorter, theatrical cut of the film, running 1 hour 54 minutes. The picture and sound are remastered and is miles better than the older U.S. disc. It is also 16:9 enhanced for you widescreen TV.

The extras are the same as the older U.S. disc, but come on a 2nd disc instead of cramming it all onto one. Even the menus are the same as the decade-old American release.

Making of 1941 (Almost as long as the film).
Deleted scenes
Original Trailers
Production photos

One thing the US disc has that this new one doesn't, is the John Williams Isolated Score.

Overall I highly recommend this.

If you want the longer cut you can still pick it up cheap.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A VERY FUNNY FILM, but that's just my opinion, 23 July 2003
This review is from: 1941 [VHS] (VHS Tape)
Although many people find this film largely unfunny I find it hilarious. They got John Belushi to play the same kind of character that he did in Animal House and, in my opinion, it works!! Dan Aykroyd is also as funny as ever, he gets a bump on the head and does some crazy things that are sure to make you laugh. This film is worth renting just to see John Belushi's many comedy falls and Dan Aykroyd's impression of a bug.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 1941 - an under-rated classic, 2 July 2011
This review is from: 1941 [DVD] (DVD)
I love this film; in fact, I've loved it since I first saw it, over 25 years ago. It's a very under-rated movie, many critics and film guides giving it around 3 out of 5, but I think it's much better than its reputation.

An homage to classic 1940s screwball comedies, this film has some great characters, played by a real all-star cast (Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi, Warren Oates, Nancy Allen, Ned Beatty, Christopher Lee, Tim Matheson, Toshiro Mifune, Robert Stack, Treat Williams, etc etc). Set in Los Angeles, a week after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, it brings together a normal family, a tank crew, a plane-crazy woman, a plain crazy fighter pilot, a really crazy Colonel, a Japanese submarine, and General 'Vinegar Joe' Stillwell, throwing them into an ever-escalating emergency, complete with fistfights, dogfights, dance fights, and a shoot-out between a Ferris wheel, a house and a submarine! How anyone could fail to like this movie is beyond me.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Still as enjoyable 19 years later, 15 July 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: 1941 [DVD] [1979] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] (DVD)
First saw this back in 1989ish on BBC 2 as a 12 year old and loved it then. Only seen it a couple of times since and, seeing as it feels like it will never come out on region 2, i went and bought this.
Film isnt hysterically funny but it will make you laugh. v v v entertaining, great to look at, great score, great direction.
Extras are brilliant - 1hr 40 documentary, lots of deleted scenes, extras and home movies.
This new directors cut extends the movies running time to 2hrs 40. Some of the new scenes work, others are just plain dull. But its just great to actually find a copy of this movie.
Still could do with a region 2 edition but for the moment this is the best we can get here in the UK.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars release this on dvd region 2 now, 21 Nov. 2005
By 
David M. Grant (lONDON .ENGLAND.) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: 1941 [DVD] [1979] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] (DVD)
Brilliant film with 2 of the funniest most talented men in comedy apart from Steve Martin and John Candy and not to mention Chevy chase....why dont they release this on DVD REGION 2 ??????
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Pure slapstick, 30 Oct. 2013
By 
Mr. M. Herbert "Bowmore" (Scotland uk) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: 1941 [DVD] [1979] (DVD)
Hilarious film, providing you like total slapstick! Built around a yarn about a lost Japanese submarine attempting an attack on Hollywood just after Pearl harbour, it highlights the paranoia amongst the more gullible American public on the west coast in that period. Excellent acting, good choreography and music and full on, in your face, slapstick comedy throughout. Critics slammed it of course, as they always do, unless its some French sub-titled atmospheric, dreamy, surreal black and white film which appeals to no-one except themselves! For me though, good family fun and a good laugh.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun and games, 19 Oct. 2010
By 
Colin Steele "Adventure freak" (London, E14) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
1941 is a rather underated film. When it first came out it was virtually ignored but as time has gone on it has found its proper place in the lists.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 26 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Only search this product's reviews