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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Too cool
This is a review for the Bluray. Somehow I have managed to go through life without ever seeing Cool Hand Luke. Despite hearing my wife go on and on about eggs, I had still missed it. I bought the Bluray on an Amazon special offer a couple of months ago, and we have just got around to watching it. I'm now sitting here wondering why on earth I waited so long...
Published on 31 July 2010 by Mr. James West

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Newman is super-cool... but not much else
Version I watched: UK Bluray release
Actors: 7/10
Plot/script: 6/10
Photography/visual style: 6/10
Music/score: 6/10
Overall: 6/10

Paul Newman is a screen icon, and this is one of his early roles, before he grew his trademark moustache. It's a pretty seminal film, being referenced and drawn from by generations afterward.
The...
Published 6 months ago by Mr. R. A. Thompson


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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Too cool, 31 July 2010
By 
Mr. James West "Nebulous" (Aberdeen, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is a review for the Bluray. Somehow I have managed to go through life without ever seeing Cool Hand Luke. Despite hearing my wife go on and on about eggs, I had still missed it. I bought the Bluray on an Amazon special offer a couple of months ago, and we have just got around to watching it. I'm now sitting here wondering why on earth I waited so long.

Despite some good supporting roles this film belongs to Paul Newman. Although the acting and dialogue is variable, Paul Newman's cheerful, non-conformist character is absolutely iconic. I thought he was good in The Hustler, but I would say this is right up there, and possibly even shades it. You keep willing him to escape, to win, whilst knowing that he isn't going to. I started off thinking - rarely can anyone have paid such a heavy price for destroying municipal property- then realised, actually that wasn't what he was punished for, it was for refusing to play by the rules. Although the film was over two hours long it didn't try to do everything. It left gaps for you to fill in yourself, and was all the stronger for that. An example was, after he was caught destroying parking meters, we didn't see him again until he arrived at the prison.

It has a great tagline as well:- "What we've got here is failure to communicate."

Picture Quality was very good. I often find scenery works best in HD, but here close-ups of faces were detailed and memorable. Watch out particularly for scenes reflected in the mirrored sunglasses of a warden. Colours were strong and natural looking with skin tones working well. It is presented in 2.4:1 so you are looking at it being letter-boxed on a widescreen TV, but that is how it was intended to be seen, and suits the film very well.

Audio Quality is much weaker. Dolby Digital is the best offering, and I had to fiddle with the sound control several times. Even when the dialogue isn't being overwhelmed it is sometimes slightly muffled and flat. I had particular difficulty picking out the words of some songs.

Largely as a result of the audio I found rating difficult. I think it deserves four and a half stars, but it's such a good film, and the picture is so good, that I finally plumped for five.
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just excellent filmmaking, 4 Sep 2006
By 
H. Feddern "demideniro" (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cool Hand Luke [1967] [DVD] (DVD)
Cool Hand Luke is yet again proof of Paul Newman's iconic status as a actor. Given the fact Newman was 42 when this film was made, one has to acknowledge that he was something special and cinema rarely has produced such actors with such a raw charisma, such a warmth and presence in front of the camera.

This film is up there with 'The Sting' and 'Butch Cassidy' in terms of classic Newman. The script and characterisation is just as entertaining and quirky as anything else Newman has appeared in.

Cool Hand Luke is more an analysis in the pride of the male ego and the systematic attempt to break it. It takes many twists and turns, but Luke always seems to have to edge over the system, his inmates and its tyrannical guards and wardens. Although its ending may seem not the one the audience could have wished for, Newman plays his role with such vigour and energy that really it doesnt matter what ending this film has - its just fun watching someone as good as Newman in a film as good as this.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nostalgia for my youth, 5 Sep 2010
This review is from: Cool Hand Luke (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1967] (DVD)
Cool Hand Luke (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1967]

I saw this film in my twenties. I wanted to replace my VHS version with a DVD. I have always been a great fan of Paul Newman and this is probably my favourite film of his. It's the story of a young rebel in the US, who goes out on a drunken spree one night and vandalizes some parking meters, just for a lark. He ends up being sentenced to work on a chain-gang. A very harsh and inappropriate sentence. There is a very moving scene where he says goodbye to his elderly, sick mother, brilliantly played by the wonderful Jo Van Fleet. Luke sets to work on the chain-gang amongst bullying prison warders and co-prisoners, carrying out soul destroying hard-labour tasks. He isn't as physically strong as most of the other prisoners, but his plucky spirit eventually endears him to one of the bullying prisoners, played by George Kennedy and there is a reversal of feeling. Luke becomes a mascot to the other prisoners and tries to meake a getaway. I won't spoil the ending. Be prepared to get a hanky out from time to time. A moving classic from the Sixties.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspirationally cool, 4 Nov 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Cool Hand Luke [VHS] (VHS Tape)
"What we've got here is failure to communicate!". The prision warden says this as he tries to humiliate and break Paul Newman's character Luke.
Luke is the hero of the prison population for his non-conformative style. This is an awe inspiring film with some truely great pieces of character acting. Paul Newman and George Kennedy are the two main stars, with Strother Martin strong as the warden. Kennedy is the prision hard man, who just can't get the better of Luke in a bare knuckle prison yard scrap. Luke just won't stay down. The scenes as the two work on the chain gangs are some of the best in the film.
Pual Newman is immense as the con who just won't reform. He has never ever done as he was told, and won't now, even in when beaten and tested to the physical limits in jail. When his mother dies, Luke begins a spiral towards self destruction, questioning everything from the system to God.
Luke is the anti-establishment hero that so many of our modern actors try to portray but are left not even fit to polish Newan's dusty prison boots.
Sharp filming and clever use of music make this a film that rises above most. It is so good it is well worth watching again and again.
"He had that ole Luke smile". Cool as you like Luke!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best films ever made, 5 Mar 2011
Definitely one of the best films of all time, great acting, very funny and sad, what more could anybody want from a film?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cool Hand Luke, 16 Dec 2009
By 
Spider Monkey (UK) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: Cool Hand Luke (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1967] (DVD)
To call `Cool Hand Luke' a classic is a vast understatement. I saw this a few days ago on TV and was hooked within the first fifteen minutes and as I was unable to finish watching it I bought it straight away and I know already that this will be one film I will watch again and again. This has an amazing performance from Paul Newman as Luke, a loner who refuses to bow to the might of authority, whether it be in society or in the prison he is sent to. He manages to inspire his fellow inmates with his humour and quiet dignity in the face of the warders cruelty and you can't help but connect with his character. This has many memorable scenes and the egg eating scene is wonderfully funny and yet others scenes are especially poignant and emotional. The direction is pretty good, if a little dated and stylised, but this only adds to the character and classic nature of the film on offer. The supporting cast are very good in this film and the entire ensemble elevate this film from being merely good to being great. This also has an excellent 'making of' documentary included on the extras. Having heard a lot about this film over the years and never having seen it I am delighted I finally have and I can honestly see what all the fuss is about. This has style, a great story, many famous lines and scenes and a wonderful anti establishment feel that makes you feel mildly rebellious just by watching it. Highly recommended indeed.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand', 14 Dec 2009
By 
Peter Buckley "peter15115" (Dyfed, Wales) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Cool Hand Luke (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1967] (DVD)
Paul Newman stars as the loner who will not conform to the arbitrary, oppressive rules of his prison captivity. As the film opens, Luke is using a pipe cutter to cut the tops off of parking meters. He is drinking, but not violent. When the police arrive, he is arrested. He is tried, and sentenced to two years in prison.
There is no dream of victory or success, any moral mission or revenge, but detached indifference, and a life lived on his terms. Co-author Donn Pearce spent two years on a chain gang, and the result is a grim, unflinching portrayal of `man's inhumanity to man'.
On the chain gang, Luke encourages the other prisoners, by his own attitude and energy, to excel at their menial tasks. This builds camaraderie among the prisoners. They are forced to shovel sand over a freshly tarred road, and perform the job with zeal and a sense of competition, and complete the job early, to the amazement of the guards. This is a high point in the story.
George Kennedy (as Dragline) heads the cast of fellow prisoners who express the full range of human emotion at Luke and his actions; pity, contempt, fear, disgust, but also as the story unfolds, outright admiration, hero worship, genuine comradeship and sympathy.
In my view, the success of the story lies in the effect Luke has on his fellow prisoners. Champion is just the role he does not want, he yells at them `you're all feeding off me!'
In a confined world where normal human values were conspicuously absent, Luke stands as a contrast, but in a mirror of the world today, does not stand for anything in a sense. At his third escape attempt, when he and we, his audience, knew he would die, he repeats the captains earlier words. `What we've got here is.. a failure to communicate!'
The nihilistic message of this film is compelling. In its conclusion we see and hear Luke, sheltering in a church, shouting at God for the seeming indifference to his, and by extension, mankinds, woes. Because, for me at least, this vital question raised is the often asked `why do bad things happen to good people?' I was reminded of how a number of individuals directly involved in the events of the Nazi holocaust have written with a spirit of the same tenacity as Luke, (such as Max Liebster in `Crucible of Terror') but with a clear understanding of what they were challenging and why. This is the reason hope is so important to us, although seemingly absent for Luke. A quote from the `Shawshank Redemption', another prison film that deals with these issues, `You have got to have hope, without it, life is pointless'.
A film to make you think, it deserves true classic status, a tribute to the late Paul Newman.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The highlight of a glittering career, 13 Aug 2009
By 
This review is from: Cool Hand Luke (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1967] (DVD)
The film that, personally, is the pinnacle of Paul Newman's career. Funny, poignant, inspiring, rebellious and a true cinematic classic, Cool Hand Luke is the story of Luke, a war veteran in prison for vandalism. He acts as a rebel within the camp and becomes a hero to his fellow inmates for his "guts", despite his laid back and unsociable nature. By standing up to the authorities and escaping three times from the prison, Luke is one of the great anti-heroes, a character symbolic of the culutral struggles between the generations that occupied contemporary thought.

Cool Hand Luke is a must see for all who appreciate cinema; full of great lines, fabulous acting, a inspired script and is a film that deserves to be in the echelons of the all-time hollywood classics, comparable to greats such as The Godfather, Casablanca, One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest and Raging Bull. See it now or truly miss out.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Newman,Robbed of an Oscar Here!!!, 1 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Cool Hand Luke [1967] [DVD] (DVD)
This is a fantastic film and probably Newmans best ever role.For a small crime hes sentenced to a chain gang.George Kennedy is the tough guy who keeps all his fellow inmates in line till Newman comes along.You dont have to be tough to be a leader shows Newman to Kennedys hefty beating of him after several verbal run ins,but the two become pals and an unlikely alliance is struck up by the two.The highlight of the movie is the "eating of 50 eggs in an hour?",but so too are the several escape attempts and cruelty from the guards.A downbeat ending,but a fantastic piece of movie making,as mentioned Newman was overlooked for the Oscar but Kennedy got it for best supporting actor here.A must watch.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh Luke you wild beautiful thing!, 12 July 2013
By 
Spike Owen "John Rouse Merriott Chard" (Birmingham, England.) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Cool Hand Luke (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1967] (DVD)
*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Luke (Paul Newman) lands himself in a Deep South prison farm for drunkenly cutting the heads off of parking meters. Once at the farm Luke refuses to be ground down by the system and its grinning warden (a brilliant Strother Martin). As things role by Luke becomes something of a hero to his fellow inmates and this is not lost on the authority in charge of the farm. Things are sure to come to a head as Luke rebels to the point of no return...

Division of Corrections. Road Prison 36.

The close examination of Cool Hand Luke over the years has rightly thrown up the fact that it's a Christ allegory. Which is just fine given that Stuart Rosenberg's film is one of the finest films that the 60s had to offer. It also boasts, arguably of course, the Paul Newman signature role (yes even better than The Hustler). As the title suggests, Cool Hand Luke, both the film and character, there is a great deal of cool here, in fact for a great deal of the first half of movie it's laced with comic touches as we warm easily to the "rebel - against - the - system" machismo and charm that Newman provides as Lukas Jackson. But the film shifts considerably at the mid-point to give us something far more potent and dramatic to alter any preconceptions the audience had of this just being a movie about a macho loner earning our sympathy.

Calling it your job don't make it right Boss.

Much in the film has been firmly ensconced in the memorable moments department: 50 eggs, tar that road quickly, the "Kick a Buck" poker game, "still shaking boss", a mountain of rice to be eaten, sneezing bloodhounds, the boxing match and one of the greatest and most iconic of tag-lines ever; "what we got here is a failure to communicate", all forming part of a truly great whole. However, revisiting the picture often brings the realisation that so much more is on offer than at first thought. Luke is a real war hero whose crime is pretty tame for the sentence he finds himself faced with, the Dragline (George Kennedy kicking up a storm of acting quality) and Luke friendship that builds with grace and thunder, sexual frustration of the incarcerated male and a mother and son arc that attacks the soul and lets Newman show many of his acting peers just how grief should be acted out on screen...

"Well, I don't care if it rains or freezes, Long as I have my plastic Jesus, Riding on the dashboard of my car. Through all trials and tribulations, We will travel every nation, With my plastic Jesus I'll go far"

With Newman, Kennedy and Martin holding court with every scene they are in, it would be easy at first glance to ignore the supporting roles, but Rosenberg ensures that supporting players make telling marks. It's a roll call of sweaty and twitchy character actors that features the likes of Anthony Zerbe, Joe Don Baker, Clifton James, Harry Dean Stanton, Dennis Hopper, Morgan Woodward, Wayne Rogers and J.D. Cannon. Filmed in Technicolor and Panavision, Rosenberg and cinematographer Conrad Hall do an amazing job of making Stockton, California feel like the actual Deep South. Film unfolds to the backdrop of a sun-drenched land inhabited by life's unfortunates and the supposed upstanding face of American officialdom...

Iconography and martyrdom unbound, Cool Hand Luke is a slow-burn classic of deep thematic worth. 10/10
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Cool Hand Luke (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1967]
Cool Hand Luke (Deluxe Edition) [DVD] [1967] by Anthony Zerbe (DVD - 2008)
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