10/30/2014  
Reno 911!: The Complete Series on DVD Nov 4Merlin: The Complete Series on DVD & Blu-ray Nov 4Maleficent on Blu-ray, DVD, Digital Nov 4My Little Pony Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks on Blu-ray & DVD Oct 28Cook's Country: Season 7 on DVD Oct 28Zombie Hood VOD & Limited Edition DVD Oct 21An Evergreen Christmas on DVD Nov 4

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Reno 911!: The Complete Series on DVD Nov 4...
Merlin: The Complete Series on DVD & Blu-ray Nov 4...
Jay and Bey get 'royal' treatment at 'Nightcrawler' pre...
Maleficent on Blu-ray, DVD, Digital Nov 4...
My Little Pony Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks on Blu-ra...

JB Joseph Burke

The Answer to American Idol's Problems Is......
CONCRETE BLONDES...
CREAM FAREWELL CONCERT...
JACK REACHER...
MANBORG...

CA Chuck Aliaga

CORRUPTION (BLU-RAY)...
THE ATTACK (BLU-RAY)...
TANK GIRL (BLU-RAY)...
HORROR STORIES...
THE UNINVITED (BLU-RAY)...

JS Jesse Shanks

2 BROKE GIRLS...
DOWNTON ABBEY SEASONS ONE & TWO LIMITED EDITION...
FLORENCE AND THE SPIRIT OF THE RENAISSANCE...
NAZI COLLABORATORS...
KATT WILLIAMS: KATTPACALYPSE...

RJ Ross Johnson

THE LIFE AND DEATH OF COLONEL BLIMP (BLU-RAY)...
PURPLE NOON (BLU-RAY)...
WEEKEND (BLU-RAY)...
JUAN OF THE DEAD...
THE DEVIL'S NEEDLE AND OTHER TALES OF VICE AND REDEMPTI...

MZ Mark Zimmer

STORAGE WARS: VOLUME THREE...
Take Part in a Film Restoration...
THE 39 STEPS (BLU-RAY)...
DARK SHADOWS: THE BEST OF BARNABAS...
STORAGE WARS: SEASON ONE...

JD Jon Danziger

SUNSET BOULEVARD...
SALO, OR THE 120 DAYS OF SODOM...
TABLOID...
CUL-DE-SAC...
3 WOMEN...

RR Rich Rosell

LES VAMPIRES (BLU-RAY)...
THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE 2: FULL SEQUENCE (BLU-RAY)...
EXORCISMUS...
THE DEVIL'S ROCK...
THE NESTING...

JC Joel Cunningham

YOJIMBO/SANJURO...
SUMMER HOURS (L'heure d'ÈtÈ)...
WIZARD OF OZ...
WINGS OF DESIRE...
HORTON HEARS A WHO!...

DH Dan Heaton

REVANCHE...
LAST DAYS OF DISCO...
NIGHTS AND WEEKENDS...
STARGATE SG-1: CHILDREN OF THE GODS...
Star Trek: The Motion Picture...

MS Matt Serafini

THE STEPFATHER...
THE HILLS RUN RED...
MANAGEMENT...
NIGHT OF DEATH...
GNAW...

KC Kevin Clemons

Freddy Got Fingered...

JU Jeff Ulmer

Secure The Second Season of The Border on DVD August 25...
THE WALTONS: THE COMPLETE 9TH SEASON...
Dance Me Outside kicks onto DVD May 6, 2008...

DD Dale Dobson

Film-Fest 4: Sundance 2000 & Hawaii...

RM Robert Mandel

Saving Private Ryan...

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

MGM Studios DVD presents
The Entertainer (1960)

"Look at my eyes. I'm dead behind these eyes. I'm dead. Just like the whole damn shoddy lot out there."
- Archie Rice (Laurence Olivier)

Review By: Dale Dobson   
Published: June 12, 2001

Stars: Laurence Olivier, Joan Plowright
Other Stars: Roger Livesey, Brenda De Banzie, Albert Finney
Director: Tony Richardson

Manufacturer: IFPI
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (some adult themes and humor)
Run Time: 01h:43m:37s
Release Date: June 19, 2001
UPC: 027616862709
Genre: drama


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
C+ C-BD- D-

DVD Review

Laurence Olivier is Archie Rice, The Entertainer, struggling to keep his vaudeville career alive in London against a rising tide of television, movies, and more talented competition. An undischarged bankrupt, he can't even write a check in his own name without risking imprisonment, and he hasn't paid income taxes in two decades. While his current production sinks, he continues cheating on his wife Phoebe, (Brenda De Banzie), ignoring the advice of his daughter Jean (Joan Plowright), and trying to live up to the legacy of his father, music hall legend Billy (Roger Livesey). Even when his soldier son Mick (Albert Finney in his debut role) is taken prisoner in the Suez conflict, Archie is unable to devote as much attention to his family as he does to his floundering career.

The Entertainer was based on John Osborne's play, and its best moments are rich with language and emotion, delivered by Olivier and company in highly theatrical style. Olivier has a field day with Archie's stage persona, singing and dancing awkwardly and delivering horrendous jokes, with pain and desperation just below the surface. Unfortunately, the story itself has serious flaws and few sympathetic characters. Archie is a scoundrel, a philanderer and a liar; he's not talented enough for us to love him in spite of his flaws, nor human enough to touch us as a tragic figure. Joan Plowright (who married Olivier shortly after this film was made) is well-meaning but ineffectual as his social-worker daughter Jean, while Brenda De Banzie generates volume but little genuine emotion as Archie's put-upon wife. Roger Livesey has a lot of fun as the aging Billy Rice, but the soundtrack recording technology of the time obscures many of his best lines.

Director Tony Richardson does what he can with the material, giving his talented cast plenty of room and time to work onscreen, but there isn't enough substance here to merit the effort. The Entertainer plays as "situation tragedy," with some tolerance for humanity and humor as long as everything comes out strident and conflicted in the end. It's the sort of drama that struts and frets its hour upon the stage, impressing the matinee crowd without leaving much of a lasting impression.

Rating for Style: C+
Rating for Substance: C-

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.66:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: MGM presents The Entertainer in its original 1.66:1 theatrical aspect ratio, letterboxed within a nonanamorphic 4:3 frame. I'm not normally a stickler for anamorphic enhancement on 1.66:1 titles, but in this case it would have been a better solution, as the frame is so fully employed that the edges of the credits will be lost to overscan on most displays. The transfer is otherwise quite impressive, with crisp black & white detail and well-balanced shadows, although some gate wobble and occasional damage detract from the experience. It's a solid transfer given the age of the unrestored film.

Image Transfer Grade: B

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
MonoEnglishno


Audio Transfer Review: There was a period in the 1950s and '60s when British films fell far behind their Hollywood counterparts in terms of audio technology, and The Entertainer is unfortunately no exception. "Live" dialogue recorded outdoors is almost always muddied and obscured by background noise, frequency range is heavily clipped, and even the studio scenes suffer excessive hiss and distortion. It's a shame, because many throwaway lines and important aspects of the performances are lost to poor recording quality; English subtitles would have been a valuable addition here, but are nowhere to be found. The DVD transfer isn't necessarily at fault, but this is one of the worst soundtracks I've heard on a non-public-domain, major studio release.

Audio Transfer Grade: D-

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 16 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in French, Spanish with remote access
Packaging: Amaray
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: There's nothing to look at here, just 16 picture-menu chapter stops and subtitles in Spanish and French (not English, unfortunately).

Extras Grade: D-

 

Final Comments

The Entertainer is a well-acted but muddled drama that doesn't mean as much as it seems to insist it does. MGM's DVD features a sharp-looking transfer, though the audio is poor and supplements are non-existent. Not recommended, though it may be worth a look to see Olivier at the top of his form.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

comedy, fantasy, celebrity, jay z, byonce, amc loews lincoln square, nightcrawler, jake gyllenhaal, rene russo, animation, kids, television, reading rainbow, lavar burton, kickstarter, seth macfarlane, family guy, movies, ouija, keanu reeves, john wick, fury, brad pitt, gone girl, box office, cooking, music, cream, jack bruce, eric clapton, ginger baker, sunshine of your love, holiday, movie, birdman, michael keaton, edward norton, alejandro ganzalez inarritu, babel, 21 grams, biutiful, emma stone, zach galifianakis, comedy-drama, crime, thriller, renee zellweger, kathie lee gifford, nicole wallace, surgery question, foo fighters, wrigley field show, chicago, sonic highways, hbo series, mystery, world war ii, logan lerman, shia lebeouf, jon bernthal, michael pena, war, documentary, warner bros, 10 super hero movies, jason mormoa, aquaman, ezra miller, the flash, batman v superman: dawn of justice, internet, cbs all access, $5.99, hbo, web-delivered television, oscars, neil patrick harris, host, the academy of motion pictures arts and sciences, tonys emmys, abc, out of the woods, good morning america, 1989, jack antonoff, bleachers, yamaha dx7, minimoog voyager, superhero, robert downey jr., captain america 3, marvel studios, chris evans

On Kindle!
On Facbook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

earth mosaics

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

DVD Marketplace

Snappy Planet

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store