Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Danny Aiello, Amy Aquino, Tony Azito, Robin Bartlett, Julie Bovasso
Genres: Action & Adventure, Comedy
Fall under the delightful spell of Moonstruck, the mesmerizing romantic comedy from director Norman Jewison (Fiddler on the Roof) and OscarÂ(r) winner* John Patrick Shanley. Academy AwardÂ(r) winners** Cher, Nicolas Cage a... more »
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To widescreen, or not to widescreen?
George | Twin Cities, Minnesota, USA | 09/02/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"(formerly a THREE-STAR review)GOOD NEWS AND ALTERED COMMENTS!! BUY IT, BUY IT, BUY IT!!! "Moonstruck" is a fabulous modern comedy/romance, a classic!! I LOVE this film, and you will, too!I had complained in my previous comment about the lack of widescreen theatrical release format in the previous release of this film, but I have just received word straight from the horse's mouth (MGM, via e-mail at their website) that the re-release of 'Moonstruck' on DVD (Nov.) will be available in either full-frame or (finally!) widescreen. AND they told me, in answer to my direct question, that 'Moonstruck' was shot in a full-frame 1.33:1 aspect ratio; theatrical presentation was 1.85:1. (Huh?)I found out that most 1.85:1 aspect ratio movies are actually shot in a 1.33:1 aspect ratio, with the intention that the top and bottom of the frames will be trimmed (matted) for 1.85:1 widescreen theatrical presentation. The cinematograper and director frame the shots with this in mind. The result of this is that the movie can be transferred easily to video without doing a pan-and-scan treatment of the photography for full-framed TV presentation. In other words, you're not missing anything in the full-screen framing. This is much preferred by the director, but still not ideal. In fact, you get MORE than the director and cinematographer intended you to see, so the framing of the shots is a bit tall, less subject-focused than intended for cinematic presentation. This is by far a better compromise than a pan-and-scan transfer: rather than losing portions of the picture and ruining the framing, you just get some extra film that the director considers superfluous. It's still a compromise, and as you watch the film, it could mean the difference between a great shot and merely a good one. So I personally still prefer theatrical release format, but I don't begrudge those who dislike widescreen their full-frame option, especially if they're not missing parts of the picture. I must say though that it surprises me how many people out there are bothered by widescreen movies on the normal 1.33:1 television. You get used to it quickly, unless you LET it bother you. (Have you noticed all the commercials and TV programs shot in widescreen recently? You probably haven't, so look for them!) As an owner of only a 27" TV (new), and a 20" before that, I say you can enjoy widescreen on TV! I would now buy this DVD even if it were only full frame. GEORGE'S RECIPE FOR INCREASED DVD AND VHS SALES: the movie studios should inform us on the back of all video releases as to what alterations have been made for the video release. If it says it's pan-and-scan, I won't touch it, but if it's this other method, I might. Many feel the same as I. I have many DVDs with widescreen on one side and full-screen on the other: the perfect compromise!"
A rich meal of a DVD!
Cubist | United States | 04/17/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When MGM first released Moonstruck on DVD they inexplicably did so with an inferior pan and scan transfer. They've rectified this situation with a new deluxe edition that restores its proper aspect ratio and with a collection of new extras. Moonstruck was the My Big Fat Geek Wedding of its day only infinitely better and about an Italian family as opposed to a Greek one. Watching Norman Jewison's film again, you realize just how much Nia Vardalos' film is heavily indebted to it. If Moonstruck is La Boheme than Greek Wedding is Tony and Tina's Wedding.
It's time to use your old disc as a coaster as this edition is definitely worth the double dip. MGM has taken TBS' dinner and a movie to the next level by including three recipe cards with fine Italian meals so that you can do your own cooking and eat it while watching the movie.
Carried over from the previous edition is the audio commentary by Cher, director Norman Jewison and screenwriter John Patrick Shanley. Both Jewison and Shanley talk about their fascination with death while Cher talks about the importance of costume and how it helps her get into character. This is a solid commentary with smart observations and excellent anecdotes from everyone.
"Moonstruck: At the Heart of an Italian Family" takes us through the genesis of the film mixing interviews done at the time of filming (Cage and Cher) and new ones (Aiello and Dukakis). There is great, behind-the-scenes rehearsal footage as Jewison and Shanley take us through the film telling several entertaining anecdotes.
"Pastas to Pastries: The Art of Fine Italian Food" is a tour of some of the best restaurants in Little Italy, in particular on Mulberry Street. You have six different places to choose from and their chefs demonstrate how to make a few choice foods guaranteed to make you hungry. If you love to cook and eat than this extra is for you.
Finally there is the "Music of Moonstruck" that examines the role that music plays in the movie. The first screening went badly because the music was all wrong."
On the Whole Widescreen Issue...
Timothy G. Morrison | Provo, UT United States | 07/03/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"First off, this is a brilliant movie. Absolutely wonderful, delightful, funny, romantic, and magical. Divine. Worth a cosmos of the brightest, most glorious stars, but I guess in this case a mere five will do.
But I'm sure you've heard what a great film this is by now, if you haven't seen it already and found out for yourself. What I want to address is the controversy regarding the new widescreen transfer on the deluxe DVD. It is indeed true that you see more in the original MGM pan & scan release--but this is still a legitimate widescreen presentation, and the way this beautiful movie was originally intended to be seen. There are many different ways to shoot film in widescreen, and one of these involves shooting onto 1.37 ratio film (pan & scan ratio) while composing it for theatrical widescreen with the aid of two lines representing the "bars" you see on a TV on the monitor. This how "Moonstruck" was filmed, and it is done so that the director can have control over how the film will look both when seen in a theater and when cropped for viewing on a conventional television. Thus, the film is shot with more image on top and bottom than you actually end up seeing in the theater, but although you are technically seeing more in pan & scan, the widescreen is still really the "definitive" version.
Anyway, I hope this review helps those who may be debating between which version of this wonderful movie they ought to buy. Both are legitimate--I've seen the pan & scan and it's lovely (it clearly was carefully composed for both aspect ratios) but I'm going to buy the widescreen version. Thanks, and hope I could help!"
Top 5 Best Romantic/Comedy Movies - EVER
R. Gorham | 07/25/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A great flick. Five stars is not enough. Cher & Cage are awesome together. Gardenia & Dukakis (as Cher's parents) are almost as brilliant. The backdrops of Manhattan and Brooklyn look terrific. Some great & memorable scenes... 1. Cher meeting Cage for the first time in the bakery basement, 2. Cage expressing his love for her the morning after, 3. Dukakis & Mahoney having dinner together & walking home, 4. Cher & Cage, (and her father and his "date") at the opera, and 5. The family sitting around the kitchen table when husband to-be Aiello shows up. Six Oscar nominations - and three awards. Cher & Dukakis were very deserving and this was easily the best screenplay of the year. How director Norman Jewison didn't win the Oscar is beyond me. I ran out and bought the delux '06 edition the week it was released. Slight picture upgrade - the widescreen is definitely better than the full frame, but there's no impprovement on the sound... dare I say it's worse. The music and most of the dialogue sounds like it is standard stereo (perhaps even mono at some points)... but the real kicker is the background music is so loud at times you can't hear the character talking. Great movie, but I feel it deserved better treament on the re-release."