Customer Review

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brings 'The Prisoner' back to life, 4 Mar. 2009
This review is from: Don't Knock Yourself Out [DVD] (DVD)
This is easily the best documentary on 'The Prisoner' currently available. It was initially included in an anniversary DVD boxed set collection but it's now released as a stand alone disc.

I'm a little surprised that this DVD doesn't come up alongside the other Prisoner DVDs on Amazon. I had to look for it by title.

I, like many others, have watched the show many times and know the series quite intimately. There have been TV programmes that have explored 'The Prisoner' and most have been interesting. But this DVD is a bit different.

Unlike other attempts, it doesn't merely tell you what you already know but reveals plenty of other fascinating things as well. There are top quality interviews and one or two revelations. For example, it has an interview with George Markstein (in the back of a cab) which is both funny and enlightening. This is important because Mr Markstein was the co-creator of the show and his opinions are quite at odds with those of McGoohan himself. In fact some popularly held beliefs are questioned and this is right and proper.

In fact there are a few contributors who are not so complimentary about Patrick. He was difficult to work with, domineering and bullying too. But this isn't a bad thing. A good documentary shouldn't pander to popular notions. In fact we never forget that he was the engine behind this astonishing series. There is no doubt that this was his show but it's great to see a little light and dark about his character.

The cast of contributors are excellent and the whole project was clearly put together by someone who really knows and loves The Prisoner. I've never seen a better examination and it really brings the whole thing to life again.

There are some bits of audio from the man himself but no interview footage. This doesn't seem to matter really as it's not necessarily what people expect. McGoohan stopped commenting on the show saying everything had been said. There are a few excellent video interviews that really blow the lid off things but they currently seem confined to YouTube.

Until someone manages to collect those bits together for release this DVD is just fine.

There really was a meaning to The Prisoner and there really was an answer. In broad terms it did make sense and there was a proper conclusion. It's not hard to work out and wasn't really meant to be. For those who still love the show this DVD is essential.
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