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4.5 out of 5 stars32
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on 13 August 2007
So finally on the 30th anniversary of Elvis' death the first genuine filmed bio featuring actual Elvis performances hits the DVD shelf,(Elvis The Movie with Kurt Russell had Elvis' music dubbed by Ronnie McDowell) This Is Elvis, originally released in cinemas in 1981 had only been available previously on VHS, it was a pretty lousy transfer, being rather washed out and grainy, so to have the shiny shoes version is a welcome edition to the fans film library,

Since this film was released there have been many more filmed attempts at Elvis' life story, some good and some downright dreadful, in some respects with this film there is a respect(bordering on reverential at times) and naivety apparent, bearing in mind this was produced during Tom Parker's(Elvis' manager) lifetime and so covering some less savoury aspects would have been heavily discouraged, and in truth, this is the case here, Elvis' reliance in his final years on prescription medicine is barely touched but is quickly sidestepped, speaking as a fan I have no real desire to have Elvis' personal problems a subject of focus, preferring instead to enjoy the performances he left behind, still no honest bio-pic could omit the facts,

In summary what we have are some of the best musical and performance highlights in a truly remarkable career, spanning over 20 years, this two disc release has the original cinema version and the later extended version, obviously similar but the extended version has a stronger focus on the live performances, in particular the Aloha From Hawaii show in 1973, it also has Ronnie McDowell (from Elvis The Movie fame), a well known Elvis soundalike, re-dubbing some of the original dialogue as it was a little on the risque side, personally I love the un-edited dialogue as it shows Elvis' wicked and often 'blue' sense of humour, he comes across as all too human instead of the plastic doll image getting wheeled around nowadays, long story short, it's a very worthwhile purchase for longterm or newer fans and now I'm finally able to ditch my worn out VHS copy,
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on 17 January 2001
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on 9 December 2003
This has to be the best documentary of Elvis Presley's life I have ever seen, it really touched my heart, and I have to say the tears were rollng down my face when I saw how the most talented performing artist of the 20th century went from a poor boy from Tupelo to a world known artist of all time.
I have to say the only thing that did'nt appeal to me was the impersination of Elvis voice and also of his close friends and family, however the original footage of Elvis life was superb and definately deserves a 5 star rating, There was some footage I have never seen before and I could'nt believe how much of the footage was of Elvis private life e.g the court scene (which I have to say I was'nt ever aware of this ever happening ) and also when he went into the army. I think the best ever performance that Elvis did was the "aloha from hawaii" but unfortunately this was not shown, however the 1968 comeback tour was incredible and have to say he looks mighty fine in the clothes he was wearing for the show ;o) It was also so amazing to watch him perform at the Hilton in Las Vegas and also to see that so many famous faces were there to see him perform to high standard - I can watch this documentary over and over again - he is and always will be the greatest performer of all time
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on 21 September 2000
This video is amazing from start to finish,It starts at the young elvis and goes right through to the death of the king.early years,army years and the great late 60's early 70's an excellent video and a must for elvis fans.
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on 24 July 2003
No matter how many times I watch this video it will always send tears to my eyes. This version is much better than the television one. The bits I didnt like are the impersonations or "look alikes". I just wanted this to be only Elvis. From that dashing "rebel" (hes got the James Dean's sultry looks) in King Creole (his best film ever) to his last performance before his death - what a waste of his acting career. And what about the 1968 comeback special - his best I reckon. He was at his physical best - very lean and tall - in the Frank Sinatra show. And you could feel the loss of his sparkle when his marriage ended - he had everything but love. Irony isnt it when you think of all those beautiful ballads he sung and he never sings any song (save the Hollywood stuff of course)if he didnt believe in them.
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on 6 September 2007
This is ultimate documentary on life & music of Elvis Presley.
We have been waiting for this to come out on DVD for a long long time.
Now we have it. Moovie is great,full of many rare & candid videos but this double dvd edition stinks.
They have remastered sound & picture only on shorter, theatrical version and left longer one,(about 45 minutes longer)
in old picture and MONO sound!!! In 21st century!
And to make things worse,
Warner Brothers decided to treat Elvis like some candy bar product, and instead of great looking, one of the coolest front cover pictures of young Elvis, like in original issue, we have this childish, teenage bubble gum design for front picture. No booklet, you guessed it. On first disc we have even special features. But don't get too excited, cause it's only original moovie trailer and 10 minutes of realy bad picture quality 'Tour of Graceland' where we can see his ex-bodyguards showing us some bikes, cars, horses and nothing special. I prefered that beautifull Golden Palomino horse instead of bikes. Thank you very much, Warner Bross.
I had to turn off all my advanced sound options on Pioneer dvd player, I mean, stereo, multichanell etc,just to get sound on longer moovie version and i find it frustrating experience.
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on 1 July 2005
I have just watched "This Is Elvis", and I found it a really great documentary film. Naturally, such a film can never go too much in detail - and still, I thought it covered Elvis' early years pretty good. Personally, I didn't like the "Elvis narration", though. Especially towards the end of Elvis' life, it seems artificial that he should have seen things so clearly. What happened, in reality, was that it all caught up on him, and so Elvis could never be able to create any distance to his life.
Apart from that, there was some confusion when entering the seventies. Clips from "That's The Way It Is", "On Tour" and "Aloha From Hawaii" came scattered throughout the film, and not always properly matched with the narration. For an Elvis fan with a sense for the chronological, this was a bit odd.
But let's forget about all this. The film is great, and it gets better and better. The last 10 minutes alone are worth the buy, in my opinion. You can see that Elvis is a very sick man - not just pale as in "On Tour" - but swollen and extremely tired-looking. He stumbles awkwardly as he climbs the stage; his voice is very very weak and fringed. Still, "My Way" brings out something in him - and suddenly, he manages to convey some of the heartfelt emotion of former days. It's an accomplishment, but it's sad to see.
This is a classic Elvis documentary.
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on 17 April 2010
As an early Elvis fan who has recently come back to wanting to know and hear more about my teenage idol, this was a good overview dvd. It's a compilation of actors and real footage of Elvis and his family and charts his career starting with his childhood and ending with his death. Of necessity,it's a bit of a quick run through but it doesn't miss any crucial stages. You see him performing in black and white on various tv shows and interestingly, answering his critics who objected to his movements on stage. It's a good reminder of just how threatening Elvis was considered to be by conservative Americans but how the youth of America felt very differently. His films, army life, family, comeback show, touring and Vegas performances are all briefly covered. At the very end, we see him overweight and looking unwell which of course he was, as he would die in a matter of months. I couldn't quite put my finger on what it was about how he looked at this stage in his life until I realized he looked like his mother Gladys. And given their enmeshed relationship this is both interesting and understandable. There are two dvd one uncut version which contains crude comment Elvis makes to his guys about women he's spent the night with and one with these cut out.
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on 2 December 2013
Had this on vhs for years and watched it many times. Had a bit a dvd buying spree last week and got this dvd really expecting just better quality picture and sound which it is, however there was also lots of extra unseen footage as this is the original version that was never shown on uk tv.

Initially i was sceptical as the cover is written in German and i watched dvd 2 first which you get included which isn't the best in picture quality however the main film is great and shows what a one of never to be repeated entertainer and personality Elvis was and still is. I loved the 70s live shows and this gives a good account of them.
There'll never be anyone again who had this guys charisma, looks or talent. Even on the last show he performed he still had that something magical about him and the voice is so smooth with so much feeling.

If you havn't seen it before then it's well worth getting.
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on 6 August 2011
This Is Elvis (2-Disc Special Edition) [1981] [DVD] Delivery great, although this is a double DVD it is not a film, it is a performance special of Elvis at his best, price fantastic, another VHS bites the dust, more space. When this came out we had already lost the 'King', but to those true fans like myself, his memory will always remain. He was the first white to sing with the feeling and voice of a coloured man and thereby bringing 'rock and roll' to billions. I was only sad never to have seen him come to the U.K. and do a tour here.
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