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Almost Famous 2000

Uncool 15-year-old William is living every teenager's dream - he's touring with Stillwater, a up and coming rock band, and writing about it for Rolling Stone magazine. Though his mentor, a legendary rock critic, cautions him not to get too close, William befriends both the band and the girls who hang around them.

Starring:
Billy Crudup, Frances McDormand
Runtime:
1 hour, 58 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Drama
Director Cameron Crowe
Starring Billy Crudup, Frances McDormand
Supporting actors Kate Hudson, Jason Lee, Patrick Fugit, Zooey Deschanel, Michael Angarano, Anna Paquin, Fairuza Balk, Noah Taylor, John Fedevich, Mark Kozelek, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Liz Stauber, Jimmy Fallon, Olivia Rosewood, Bijou Phillips, Alice Marie Crowe, J.J. Cohen, Gary Kohn
Studio Sony Pictures International
BBFC rating Suitable for 15 years and over
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
[Amazon migrated my original review of this great movie across to the Blu-Ray edition from the Region 1 "Boot Cut". Unfortunately this means that a lot of it is completely inaccurate! The Boot Cut has great extras, such as the superb commentary, and the Blu-Ray has nothing much aside from the extended version of the film. Quite why it was possible to do more with the DVD format than it is with Blu-Ray I'm not sure, but with no Stillwater CD, no "Stairway to Heaven" scene, no deleted scenes etc. this is an opportunity badly missed. Still, it's the extended version and the film really is wonderful ... so it keeps its 5 stars either way.]

"Almost Famous" is a truly great film about music by someone who was also a great rock journalist. If you missed it in cinemas, this is a great opportunity to pick it up for home viewing.

The three discs here are a short CD by "Stillwater" (the fictional band from the film), a DVD of the original theatrical release and the main event: a DVD of the Director's Cut with a commentary by Cameron Crowe and his mother.

The longer version, it should be noted, takes what was already a brilliant autobiographical film and adds some key scenes, most of which explore further the rock world of the early seventies. Crowe himself wanted to tell not merely a love story, but - more importantly - the love story between a band and its fans. The additional detail really "sells" this aspect of the film, most notably in an extraordinarily moving scene when Kate Hudson's character is thrown a birthday party by the band. If you haven't seen this version, you haven't really seen the film: it really does make that much difference.

Finally, the commentary, which is one of the most informative that I've encountered.
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4 Comments 28 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
Crowe's partially autobiographical story about a gifted but naïve young rock journalist prematurely entering the world of his idols is moving, hilarious, thought-provoking and as good as any of his previous films. William comes of age as he deals with the rock and roll lifestyle, journalistic pressures, sex, jealousy and the questionable sincerity of his new 'friends' - all this with his over-protective mother demanding to know his every move.
The acting is fabulous - my favourite performance is the stunning (in every way) Kate Hudson as 'band-aid' Penny Lane ("not a groupie!"). Also an awesome debut from Fugit - perfectly cast and totally believable. My favourite film moment is when the characters reveal their deepest secrets on the tour plane because turbulence makes them believe they are going to die.
The DVD offers excellent extras including a documentary and actual Rolling Stone transcripts, written by Crowe. The soundtrack is impressive but the best feature is the picture of Hudson on the cover - almost perfect.
Comment 19 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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By A Customer on 11 Aug. 2001
Format: DVD
This film is both a eulogy for a bygone age (the mid 70s) and an intimate portrait of aspiring journalist William Miller's coming of age, as he follows up-and-coming rock band Stillwater around the USA. The young cast is excellent - Patrick Fugit shoulders the pivotal role with unassuming ease, Billy Crudup is a convincing guitar hero, Jason Lee is engaging as ever and Kate Hudson sparkles as the head "Band Aid".
Many scenes in the film are wish fulfillment writ large - the tourbus, the backstage parties, the hotel rooms and the groupies. However, the moments of abandon are tempered with displacement and loneliness for William as he tries to shake off his sheltered upbringing. Watching this process is often funny and sometimes painful, but even in its darker moments the film is shot through with warmth and affection.
An immaculate soundtrack complements the action perfectly. From the very beginning the music works with the sets, clothes and haircuts, to transport the viewer back to the 1970s. This is the most unashamedly enjoyable film I have seen in a long time. Stellar script, soundtrack, performances, and direction will make you feel 18....well, 17....OK - 16 again.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
I've loved this film since the first time I watched it and decided to replace my DVD copy with the Blu Ray version. Sadly the Blu Ray disk only contains the Extended Cut which adds around 40 minutes to the films running time. This is truly a case of "more is less" because the extra footage while not bad in and of itself destroys the pace and focus of the film. It is a shame that there is not an option to chose which version one wants to watch on the disk or even an option to buy a separate release version of the film on BD.

Initially when I saw a few extra bits in the film I was pleased because sometimes films are excessively trimmed to fit a two hour running time and as I like the film and the characters this initially seemed like it could be an improvement. But I was finding that what had been a really enjoyable film over multiple viewings was simply dragging. Yes we get to know a few of the supporting characters better in this version and yes there are undoubtedly "moments" that have a charm of their own, but none of these changed the story or added depth, only breadth. It is clear that the original release version had been edited well and that the quality of what was left in was better than the bits that ended up on the cutting room floor, and to an extent leaving the viewer to fill in the gaps can make us more sympathetic. It is often the same with "bonus" tracks on remastered CDs where the previously unheard tracks are clearly inferior to those on the original album.

Obviously some reviewer do appreciate the longer version and this is no doubt because their focus is on wallowing in the atmosphere of 1970s rock. My interest is generally in story, and personally find films that convey atmosphere and mood succinctly are more enjoyable.
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