The Beach [Blu-ray] 
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Leonardo DiCaprio is electrifying in this adrenaline-drenched, tantalisingly seductive thriller from the director of Trainspotting. Richard (DiCaprio) a young American backpacker, is willing to risk his life for just one thing: that mind-blowing rush you can only get from braving the ultimate adventure. But on a secret, deceptively perfect beach, he’ll soon discover that, as the level of intensity rises and the stakes climb higher, desire grows stronger... and danger grows deeper. Co-starring Virginie Ledoyen, this "journey to the unexpected, full of surprises, twists and turns, love and romance, lust and desire" (Maria Sallas, GEMS) explores the hidden perils and dark places that lurk just beyond the shores of paradise...
Leonardo DiCaprio sought to distance himself from the cloying wholesomeness of his character in Titanic, and his role in The Beach is in many ways a polar opposite. As Richard, a young American seeking to "suck in the experience" of freestyle travel in Thailand, he is a chronic liar, a pot-smoking hedonist, an amoral lover and ultimately an unstable snake in a doomed Garden of Eden. This crazy descent might be expected from the filmmakers of Trainspotting, but The Beach is a movie without a rudder, venturing into fascinating territory, promising a stimulating adventure and then careening out of control. After receiving a not-so-secret map to a secluded island from a stoned-out loony (Robert Carlyle, full of dark portent and spittle), Richard sets out to find the hidden paradise with a young French couple (Virginie Ledoyen, Guillaume Canet). What they find is a tropical commune existing in delicate balance with Thai pot farmers, and before long--as always--there is trouble in paradise. There is trouble in the movie, too, as DiCaprio is reduced to histrionics when the plot turns into a muddled mix of Lord of the Flies and Apocalypse Now, with shark attacks tossed in for shallow tension. Director Danny Boyle attempts perfunctory romance and a few audacious moves (notably DiCaprio's vision of life as a violent video game), but what's the point? Tilda Swinton registers strongly as the commune's charismatic leader, but her character--and the entire film--remains largely undeveloped; and pretty scenery is no guarantee of a laudable film. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Leonardo DiCaprio is Richard, a backpacker searching for a bit more in life, after a meeting with pot smoking loony Daffy (the wonderful Robert Carlyle), he learns of an island paradise that is everything he has yearned for in his life. Getting there will give him the adventure and danger he craves, because once there it apparently will be the thing of dreams, the perfect paradise cut off from civilisation...
The film is very much split in two, the first half introduces us to Richard and the people he would convince to travel with him to this island paradise, we then follow their journey that is perfect in fleshing out the characters, they come up against obstacles and learn about each other on the way. The second half is well worth waiting for because it's here that the story kicks in to make the viewer think, it's idyllic, it's gorgeous, it's near perfect, but wherever there is a community, there will be personal hang ups, jealousies, power seekers and etc, in short, the surroundings may be perfect but the human condition is far from flawless.
I love this film now, I love DiCaprio's performance, a cocky smart-arse thrill seeker about to get a wake up call is tailor made for him, and he delivers it with a skillful array of emotions.Read more ›
Back to the film...Leo is a great actor - the whole cast is fab. One if my favourite films
I really do like this film and i don't think it got the acknowledgement it deserved.The acting is great
and the scenery is both spectacular and beautiful.I put myself into the position of Richard when i watch this,thinking you
know if i went travelling and went to the places he does and the situations he gets himself into what would i do.
The story is of an American traveller,Richard (Di Caprio) and his chance meeting with Daffy (a cameo by Robert Carlyle)
in a hotel.Daffy gives him a map of a secret island where paradise can be found and Richard soon tells the story to two
French travellers and they all head of in search of the island,but when they get there the paradise soon turns into a
nightmare and for Richard his mind starts to lose control.
As i said this to me is a more than a cult classic where only a few people loved it.It should be liked by more and for some
reason people don't seem to like to say that they liked this film and they look at you as if you are sad for liking it yourself.
As i said try it for yourself and see.
But in exchange for these unavoidable losses you also get a lot more than on paper - the striking visuals which pay a more than fair tribute to the writer's wonderful skill with descriptions (director of photography Darius Kondji is a master of his art), the great casting and acting, a cool soundtrack, and more catchy twists in the plot. True, some of the variations from the book are clearly imposed by Hollywood standards - the extra sex and love interest, mostly, and the simplified ending. But they do work somehow here.
The extra features allow you to view the alternate ending as well as lots of scenes that were cut out for practical reasons. If they had been included, it would have been a three-hour long movie (and the Apocalypse Now connection would have been too much!) and most of all, a lot sadder and more subtly disturbing. It wouldn't have worked that well for the box office, and that's not a denigratory comment.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Love this film, a must for any DVD collection. Arrived as expected.
Could watch a 1,000 times !!!!!
Beautiful movie! I frequently visit the Pipi Islands where the movie was shot and it's absolutely breath taking.
Filled with suspense, romance and drama! Read more
Interesting to see Decaprio early in career. Not a bad film at allPublished 3 months ago by Charles Proctor