- Actors: Frank Sinatra, Laurence Harvey, Janet Leigh, Angela Lansbury, Henry Silva
- Directors: John Frankenheimer
- Writers: John Frankenheimer, George Axelrod, Richard Condon
- Producers: John Frankenheimer, George Axelrod, Howard W. Koch
- Format: VHS
- Classification: 15
- Studio: MGM
- VHS Release Date: 11 Sept. 2000
- Run Time: 126 minutes
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (90 customer reviews)
- ASIN: B00004W4FE
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 159,589 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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The Manchurian Candidate [VHS]
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Classic US thriller directed by John Frankenheimer. When Major Marco (Frank Sinatra) returns from service in Korea, he is haunted by a recurring dream in which Congressional Medal of Honor hero Raymond Shaw (Laurence Harvey) appears to kill two of his unit in front of an audience of Korean and Russian officials. Working for army intelligence, Marco eventually discovers that Shaw has become the unwitting pawn in a Communist conspiracy to kill an American presidential candidate. With time running out Marco is forced to go to extreme lengths to put a stop to Shaw's plans before it's too late.
You will never find a more chillingly suspenseful, perversely funny, or viciously satirical political thriller than The Manchurian Candidate, based on the novel by Richard Condon (author of Winter Kills). The film, withheld from distribution by star Frank Sinatra for almost a quarter-century after President Kennedy's assassination, has lost none of its potency over time. Former infantryman Bennet Marco (Sinatra) is haunted by nightmares about his platoon having been captured and brainwashed in Korea. The indecipherable dreams seem to centre on Sergeant Raymond Shaw (Laurence Harvey), a decorated war hero but a cold fish of a man whose own mother (Angela Lansbury, in one of the all-time great dragon-lady roles) describes him as looking like his head is "always about to come to a point". Mrs Bates has nothing on Lansbury's character, the manipulative queen behind her second husband, Senator John Iselin (James Gregory), a notoriously McCarthyesque demagogue. --Jim EmersonSee all Product description
Top customer reviews
No, seriously it is such an original story line, especially the
afternoon tea sessions. If you've never seen it before, you
are in for a treat. All the cast were marvellous, even Sinatra.
Of course The Manchurian Candidate is just pure fiction and the whole idea sounds ludicrous, served up as a slice of paranoia propaganda to the McCarthites, and a satire of said paranoia to the more liberal crowd. Produced and released at a time when the ghost of McCarthism was still very much present in the U.S. and all over the western world, The Manchurian Candidate was a film that hit the nail at both sides of the argument. With a compelling performance by Laurence Harvey, as the troubled and detestable young man at the centre of the whole story, and a sensantional performance by Angela (Jessica Fletcher) Lansbury as his horrid mother who would make Mrs Bates look like a saint, The Manchurian Candidate is a brilliant and captivating film that would take you on a suspence filled ride and would leave you hoping for more.
The Blu-Ray: Yet again Arrow have proven themselves very worthy. If there ever was a home video distributor that did an abrupt face on its reputation its this company. After investing heavily on re-energising their brilliant regular cult/expoloitation label (and I use this term loosely, since older mainstream titles that are ripe for rediscovery seemed to have crept into the catalogue) Arrow have gone back and reopened their dormant Arrow Academy label with the 2013 release of The Night of the Hunter and have excelled also. This release has a decent enough transfer. The PQ is stable and the majority of all scratches and marks have been removed, whilst the AQ (a 1.0 mono track) is stable, and dialogue is crisp and unobtrusive. Seeing as this is an Arrow release, extras are a major hook and yet again Arrow have not held back and have gave this release their detailed best.
Overall, fans of the film will be delighted by this release whilst newcomers will be greatly rewarded by a brilliant film and comprehensive extras that they would be sitting down to be play solitaire for many years to come.
Frank Sinatra is, as always, very good and so is Laurence Harvey, but the most scary person is portrayed by Angela Lansbury. There is quite a gap between her part in the sugar-coated TV-series, "Murder, she wrote", to her role as the cold-blooded and unscrupulous mother to her son (LH), and Meryl Streep in same role and in the remake of the movie in 2004 didn't come close.
Great director and a great movie!
For me this was a great film, and if you love slow burners, which end with you on the edge of your seat, then this film is for you.
Just like to mention the Blu-ray transfer was very good, and the booklet and bonus features are a nice touch.
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Most recent customer reviews
in 1988,after years of obscurity and it was bone chilling.Read more