2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Get it?
Some people still don't get this. I'm amazed how many people still give me that perplexed glare when I compare the genius of `The Office' with that `Faulty Towers'. `The Office?' they say, as if their long-standing respect for my opinion is suddenly in jeopardy, `but why is it funny? It's just people in an office'. An worthy reflection and précis, no doubt! I'm...
Published on 27 Jun 2008 by KPA Lowe
3.0 out of 5 stars good
This dvd came to me on time. The casing is crushed and damaged but the dvd itself works fine. I paid for a used product at a low price, the service was fine.
Published on 23 May 2012 by Eleanor
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Get it?,
Some people still don't get this. I'm amazed how many people still give me that perplexed glare when I compare the genius of `The Office' with that `Faulty Towers'. `The Office?' they say, as if their long-standing respect for my opinion is suddenly in jeopardy, `but why is it funny? It's just people in an office'. An worthy reflection and précis, no doubt! I'm increasing convinced that people just don't WANT to get it! People just don't want to give undivided attention, absorb every aspect, and conclude for themselves (.e., without the assistance of a studio audience or laughter track) precisely what is and is not funny. Yes, the lack of a `laughter prompt' is a hindrance for some. I can't help but wonder how many past sitcoms would have been so superior if the laughter track been dropped: `I'm Alan Partridge', `Father Ted', `The Young Ones'..... but the dim reality is that they would not have been half as successful!
Thankfully, Merchant and Gervais managed it! In fact, they used this concept to attract the audience they desired: an audience who appreciated their art. Indeed, in this fast-paced day and age, many simply do not have the time they wish to emerge themselves in book, classics and culture, but are completely aggravated with the monotonous so-called entertainment that the `box' offers.
`The Office', in this sense, is perfect! That is not to say that it is for the elite. Actually, I fail to comprehend what is NOT to get or what is NOT funny. Gervais sets up the exasperatingly over-confident tactless idiocy of character David Brent right from the opening shot. As Brent interviews and promises to employ someone who is plainly under-qualified for a job as forklift diver, he `bigs up' the candidate to Sammy (who gives jobs in the warehouse) complete with fibs, comical hand gestures, and knowing glances at the candidate and camera that are the staple traits of this main character. The complex relationship between Tim (Martin Freeman) and Dawn (Lucy Davis) is performed outstandingly by the actors and produces the main thread of the plot that links all the episodes. In turn, their light-hearted harassment of Team Leader Garrath (Mackenzie Crook) is also great entertainment for the viewer. The highlight of the series is probably episode 4, when an outside trainer visits the team for a day's workshop. Having an outsider among the chaos enforces the ridiculousness and unprofessional nature of the whole set up, and what a real fool Brent really is, as his reaction to potentially being slightly out of control is played brilliantly by Gervais.
So, some people cannot understand what IS funny about `The Office', personally, I simply cannot see what IS NOT funny about it. Pure genius in fact.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cult & British Too,
British comedy took a new twist in "The Office," the brief but funny series starring Ricky Gervais as the worst boss you will (hopefully) never have. While the ending is somehow a letdown, the road there is a glorious tangle of cubicle hell and mad boss antics.
The first season opens with David Brent (Ricky Gervais) learning that either his branch or another branch of Wenham-Hogg will shortly be downsized. So this wannabe-comedian sets out to prove that his branch is better, stumbling. Trailing in his wake is bored everyman Tim (Martin Freeman), dead-looking yes-man Gareth (MacKenzie Crook), and pretty, quietly cynical receptionist Dawn (Lucy Davis).
"The Office" is clearly destined for cult status alongside classic "Fawlty Towers." While it has its dud moments, the mockumentary office comedy is a must-see for fans of subtler, weirder television.
We all have those moments in our own little offices
27 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best BBC comedy since Blackadder...,
In fact the best comedy since Blackadder, period. When I first stumbled upon The Office halfway through the first episode, I took a moment or two to realise that it was a spoof, and not a genuine fly-on-the-wall. When I realised I laughed my head off at it's often painful accuracy, and have done so with each episode since.
For those few who haven't yet seen it, The Office is not a traditional sitcom. The 'plotlines' are intentionally drab (end-of-financial year disco!!) and nothing of note happens at all. But this ridiculing of docusoap culture and it's pointlessness is what makes the series. As of course, are the people in it.
The character of Brent is magnificent. Every last mannerism, every utterance of cringeworthy 'let's all pull together' management-speak is spot-on. Finch is revolting in every way, Tim is terrific (although a little unrealistic, has there ever been a 20/30-something lad as intelligent and thoughtful as that?) and his yearning for Dawn, already in the clutches of caveman Lee is genuinely poignant. The scene where Lee discusses their future, and his plans for Dawn (a few kiddies under her belt and a cleaning job!) is priceless. So true, and so sad.
As for Gareth...well, as Mackenzie Crook says in the documentary, 'a right wally'. Boasting about army exploits has never sounded so ridiculous.
The vast majority of us have known the characters featured in The Office, and had the misfortune to work with them. It is a comfort to those of us who always suspected how supremely sad these people were, but never wanted to say. Now we have it confirmed. The Office is a masterpiece, and I hope it will stay that way, and that Gervais and co. don't blow it by making abysmal feature length versions, for example. The power of this series is that it took a fresh, raw idea, without a trace of commercial formula, and scored a massively deserved hit.
The DVD could hardly be bad, with this series on it. As previous reviews have suggested, a director's/writer's commentary would have been nice (even if it was just a couple of episodes) but the documentary is good, the deleted scenes definitely watchable, and the anamorphic picture lovely for a TV series. The couple of hidden extras are okay, but I haven't watched them more than once.
The Beeb don't always do a very good job with their comedy DVDs, but this one is a definite winner.
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, innit?,
If you crossed "Office Space" with "Spinal Tap," you might end up with something like "The Office." This hit British comedy defies the usual sitcom rules, and brings us into the cringingly dull world of a paper corporation, all delivered with straight-faced wit and hilarity.
Wernham Hogg is a suburban paper corporation, a stunningly dull place to work. And presiding over it is David Brent (Ricky Gervais), a wannabe comic who claims to be a pal to all the people under him, despite driving them all up the wall. There's also his partner in crime, vaguely corpse-like Gareth (Mackenzie Crook), the downtrodden everyman Tim (Martin Freeman), and the beautiful Dawn (Lucy Davis), whom Tim hopelessly longs for.
In the first season, David is informed that either his branch or another branch are going to be eliminated. If his branch is eliminated, some people will be downsized, and others relocated. The employees -- including Tim and Dawn -- reexamine their lives as they struggle to survive in the day-to-day chaos, including a Web porn scandal, a quiz competition, giant inflatable genitals, drunken carousing, inter-office romances, and Gareth playing detective.
Don't expect a typical sitcom in "The Office." No laughtracks. No punch lines. No gag humor... well, not much. And no episode has a clear-cut ending. Instead, we have the format seen in "This is Spinal Tap" and the Christopher Guest mockumentaries -- hidden cameras watching the madness. And what those cameras see is enough to make the world's cubicle-dwellers cry.
The series gets off to a slightly bumpy start -- at first, the jokes are a bit too thinly-spread. But soon "The Office" gets its footing and the humor steadies itself ("Tim's put my stapler inside a jelly again. That's the third time he's done it!" Gareth complains, displaying the stapler in a Jell-O mold). And a lot of the humor is a subversive, subtle kind -- it creeps into your mind, and by episode two you'll be laughing your head off at David's bad jokes and veiled prejudices.
Ricky Gervais is brilliant. David is every bit as annoying and obnoxious as the immortal Basil Fawlty, but hides it under a genial mask and stupid jokes. Mackenzie Crook is wonderful as the obsequious boot-licker. Tim, like Dilbert, is a lovable loser who can't get himself out of his soul-sucking job. And Dawn is mired in a relationship with an obnoxious cheapskate.
More subtle and yet goofier than American sitcoms, "The Office" is a unique slice of British humor. Funny, witty, and horrifyingly true to life, this is a brilliant series.
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Office,
This review is from: The Office - Series 1 [UMD Mini for PSP] (UMD Mini for PSP)
If you don't already own the Office Series One on DVD, then you might consider getting the series on UMD. The Office provides comedy which will make you laugh so loud everybody on the bus will want to know what's making you laugh so loud.
There are scenes from this TV show that are timelessly funny, and you'll enjoy watching them again and again. Each episode is 30 minutes and there are six of them. However, the series has been split onto two discs, so three are on each. Also, because of the shortage of space on the discs, there are no extras, which you would get on a DVD.
One more criticism is that the sound isn't very loud, even if you are wearing earphones with the sound to the maximum. If you're travelling on a bus that makes a lot of sound, or there are people around noisily chatting, you'll struggle to hear what is being said on the DVD. The only option is to have subtitles on.
Despite this, the Office is a comedy classic; and although its comedy concept has been done before (in the Day Today) it still manages to have you laughing out loud.
40 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Waiting for Godot,
I can only watch this curled up in a ball of cringe. It is utterly brilliant - perceptive, hilarious and totally tragic. An office of lonely people working for a paper merchant in Slough, bored out of their minds, just waiting for Godot. Nothing ever happens. And in the meantime they just pick at each other. I can't bear to watch it, but it is so eye-wateringly true to life that it's addictive. The overly competitive work pub quiz, the mind-numbing management seminar, wars over desk size... and best of all there's the rancid manager David Brent who flicks his eyes around the place and tries to be everyone's best mate.
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Comedy,
"The Office" has now reached an iconic status among British comedies ranking alongside the likes of "Fawlty Towers", "Blackadder" and "I'm Alan Partridge" in quality. It's comedy is based on strong characterisation and an achingly accurate observation of everyday office life,highlighting it's banality and mundanity while tapping a rich vein of humour in the process.Characters like David Brent, Finchy, Gareth, Tim and Dawn are all memorable ones and although there are few hilarious, side splitting scenes involving them , their interrelationships are constantly amusing and entertaining. Highlights of this first series for me would be the Training Day and the night out at Chasers Nightclub.
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Want some paper?",
I once came across this Protestant quotation: "Work is only meaningful if it hurts". Nowadays hard work doesn't have to involve physical pain: boredom, apathy and disillusionment are just as damaging to health and self-esteem as a broken leg. Thanks to an out-dated work ethic, people are trapped in a daily routine of monotony, stress and the mistaken belief that "you are your job" - an attitude compounded by the fear of redundancy and a loss of social worth.
And so we come to the setting of "The Office": a soulless environment of humming computers and ringing telephones. A sub-branch of the paper merchants Wernham-Hogg. From what we see of the workers and hear by the sound of their voices, it is clear that they get no pleasure from their work. Tim Cantebury makes it quite plain to the documentary crew that he'd rather be somewhere else. The only job satisfaction he gets is in winding up the military-minded team leader Gareth Keenan, who once tried to express his sensitivity to an attractive girl by saying: "Isn't 'Schindler's List' a great film?"
Perhaps the only person who seems to be enjoying himself is the manager David Brent. His version of reality is like the reflection we see in a distorting mirror: completely false. David sees himself as a lively, funny and charming friend to everyone. At one point he even compares himself to Jesus Christ. In actual fact he comes across as embarrassing, thoughtless and offensive. David plays up to the camera with a series of misfired jokes, to which his colleagues react with awkward, pained or stony expressions.
Many viewers of "The Office" say that this is frighteningly close to reality. Everyone can relate to at least one character. Ricky Gervais actually based some of the goings-on in "The Office" on his own experiences, although he said David Brent wasn't inspired by one particular person. Like "The Royle Family" or "People Like Us" you have to work out for yourself which bits to laugh at. Situations in real life aren't accompanied by disembodied hahahaha's or background music.
I read in the newspaper that Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant are planning to make a one-off Christmas special of "The Office", with David Brent dressed as Santa Claus. They said they would start filming in August. It sounds like that most stressful time of the year will be taken to new heights. I look forward to seeing it.
14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Frighteningly Realistic,
Ok, this is by far one of the best comedies I have watched so far. It would be a sin to compare it with countless other meaningless sitcoms that are aired day in day out.
This show is so realistic that while you are sitting there laughing your heart out, at the same time you can actually identify with most of the situations. Some situations are so real and acting so fanstastic that you actually want to get up from your couch and bash up the guy on TV.
The office doesnt use cheesy one liners and background laughs to catch your attention. There are too many classic scenes to name with my favourite one being "The Stapler and the Jelly scene". Get this DVD, it is well worth adding to your collection.
Only the british could have made such a classic comedy (and no I am not British).
22 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute masterwork of modern TV,
As relative newcomers to acting/directing, Brent & Merchant have created a series that will stand the test of time, I guarantee you. The best way to approach this is with no preconceptions. Just buy it, put it on, and sit back and be awestruck.
David Brent (played with genius by Gervais) is, at first glance, the archetypal "boss from hell" - he thinks he's King of Comedy, prime-time entertainer and friend to all, but to everyone in his employ, his "comedy" is pretentious and self-serving. But look a little closer; as the series progresses, we realise that Brent is really a lonely, desperate man crying out for appreciation. And it is that recognition of ourselves in him which makes it so painful to observe. We think of "The Office" as a comedy, but it's more, much more than that. In the ever-present (but never quite consumate) flirting between Tim and Dawn, we see our dreams, and how we reach out half-heartedly for them but never quite achieve them. Gareth is our ego, as we think to ourselves in that scruffy office "I could be boss here if I creep up enough". The supporting cast are really tremendous. There's just too much to say about "The Office" and not enough scope to say it in. This is simply the best BBC programme for decades, and I mean as a comedy or drama or tragedy. You can't afford not to see it, it's really THAT good.
By the way, I've just watched the last episode of Series 2 (the final one) and it was unquestionably the most intense thirty minutes of television I've seen....possibly ever. I cried.
It's hats off to Gervais and Merchant, they've pulled off a true masterpiece here. Well Done!
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The Office - Series 1 [UMD Mini for PSP] by Stephen Merchant (UMD Mini for PSP - 2005)