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Buddy Holly Story [Blu-ray] [Import]

Blu-ray
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 44.84 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Rock historians and hard-core Buddy Holly fans can and do take issue with director Steve Rash's 1978 biopic of the Lubbock, Texas, rocker's life: the script liberally juggles details from Holly's brief but blazing career, replacing producer Norman Petty and Holly's original bassist and drummer with fictionalized composite characters. Yet the core of the film, and the reason it's definitely worth a look and listen, is Gary Busey's lusty performance in the title role, triumphing against what might have seemed miscasting.

The burly, lantern-jawed Busey steps into the lankier, narrow-faced Holly's blue suede shoes and dances off with the movie. At a time when live rock albums thought little of overdubbing mistakes in the studio, director Rash honored Busey's nervy gamble in performing these songs live, singing in his own raw voice and rumbling through his own approximations of Holly's guitar work. What's lost in precise verisimilitude is more than compensated by Busey's conviction and a palpable, almost ecstatic terror as he charges through Holly's wonderful songs before indifferent roller-rink audiences.

Other films have nailed the period more accurately through art direction or script, but Busey's authentic energy gives this movie an emotional veracity that's just right for this chapter in rock history. Still, for musical purposes, go straight to the source, Holly's wonderful recordings.--Sam Sutherland


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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Gary Busey brings Buddy Holly to life! July 17 2004
By Dave
Format:DVD
I'm a huge fan of Gary Busey, who may not be a "star" but is nevertheless a great actor. This is by far his best performance, & I feel he deserved the best actor oscar more than Jon Voight (who won for Coming Home). Few people know that Busey was a musician before he was an actor, so in this awesome musical biography of Buddy Holly we get to see just how talented he is. The film is mostly factual, although some screen characters are actually composites of two or more people. The energy in Busey's performance is what makes this a winner. Not only did he sing, he did it while being filmed live! That's what gives this such a realistic look to it & it's why this stands out among the other musical biographies as one of the best. There was also a lot of unscripted dialogue that makes this even more entertaining. The best thing about the dvd is the hilarious & very informative commentary from the director Steve Rash & Gary Busey, which is almost as good as the film itself! This is an excellent tribute to a lengendary rock & roll icon & it won an oscar for best score adaptation. Do yourself a favor, add this great film to your collection!
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By J. Boot
Format:DVD
The Buddy Holly Story starring Gary Busey should not be taken as a historical document. Nor do I believe it ever set out to be. What has been created is a film which gives the feel and atmosphere of Buddy Holly, his music and the USA of the day. To have been completely factual would have most probably killed the film with legal challenges and suppression. The Crickets leaving Buddy to side with Norman Petty in the split leading to the final tour and the bitter disappointment this must have caused Buddy, the actual split itself with Petty and the resultant financial complications, these happenings are really not the sort of thing to air in a movie to celebrate the life and music of one of the founders of Rock.
Instead Gary Busey has strapped on a Fender and in effect becomes Buddy Holly. The rhythm and beat, the frantic excitement, the sheer enjoyment of the music, it is all there. We actually get to experience a timeslice of a period some of us recall fondly and others would like to share. A wonderful reminder of good music for us oldies or a enjoyable introduction to a legend for others, a Rock'n'Roll legend quoted by The Beatles and a number of other major musical identities as a major influence in their music.
One of the lesser known items about this film and the making thereof is that Gary Busey actually formed a band and toured up and down the west coast of the USA before the making of it to provide himself with the feel and practice of performing Buddy Holly songs before an audience. He actually played and sang the songs in the film rather than lip-sync Buddy's records to provide some authentic feel to the whole thing - good on yer Gary !
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3.0 out of 5 stars A good bio-drama but.... Feb. 1 2003
Format:DVD
Buddy Hollly. Probably no one artist in Rock & Roll history has garnished as much deserving respect and admiration than this musical pioneer from Lubbock, Texas. However, while there's so much to like about this film, there's also a lot to be disgrunteled at. Gone are the real names of Crickets members Jerry Allison and Joe B. Mauldin, and Holly is never shown recording his first hits in New Mexico with Norman Petty. Holly never sang "Maybe Baby" during his 2 spots on the Ed Sullivan Show, he never toured with Sam Cooke, nor was there an orchestra with King Curtis on that fateful winter tour in 1959. Busey's Buddy doesn't even use his legendary trademark Fender Stratocaster model guitar until the last scene! My mother saw Buddy perform when she was younger at the old Paramount Theaters in NYC and Brooklyn and on TV - he was always sharply dressed, like a classical pianist, and never the gawky "white socked" nerd Busey portrays him as. The films best moments are when Busey interacts as Holly with his wife and others and the music! Historically it's hardly the real Buddy Holly Story, but it's fun never the less.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Gary Busey Makes this Movie Rock! Jan. 31 2002
By A Customer
Format:DVD
My parents took my brother, sister, and I to a drive-in theatre back in 1979 to see THE VILLIAN -Kirk Douglas, Ann Margaret, and "Aunuld" Schwarzenegger-(Does anyone remember that movie??!!). Fortunately for us, the evening wasn't a total loss because on the second billing was THE BUDDY HOLLY STORY. This film proved to be the better movie of course. Being a Beatles fan, and knowing Buddy Holly was one of their influences, this movie about one of the innovators of rock 'n' roll, is excellent. Gary Busey in the title roll pulls it off with such depth and passion that he actually did his own singing and guitar playing. Great supporting performances by Charles Martin Smith (who I only knew as "Toad" in American Graffitti, or as the guy who almost buys Greg Brady's "lemmon" of a car in the BRADY BUNCH) and Don Stroud (always plays bad guys on tv guest appearances etc..) who play their own bass and drums respectively. I found out later, that the movie takes some liberties with the actual events of Buddy Holly's short but great career, but it is an effective and entertaining biopic nonetheless. Also, Holly's songs are great. Other noteworthy performances from Conrad Janis (Mindy's Dad in MORK AND MINDY) as the record company owner Ross Turner, and Maria Richwine as Maria Elena Holly. Note: Look for Matthew 'Stymie' Beard (of OUR GANG/LITTLE RASCALS fame) as Luthor, the stage hand at the Apollo Theatre!!
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars The Buddy Holly Story
Very good movie! Excellent acting by all characters. Very sad story. Truly a legend in Rock & Roll history.

Will buy again.

Thank you.
Published 15 months ago by JOHN R RACZYK
1.0 out of 5 stars worst quality blu ray ever
Don not waste your money on this Blu Ray. It is the worst transfer ever. The colours are washed out. During scene on stage at hall their faces are all bright and white. Read more
Published on Jan. 15 2012 by Bruce Fulton
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome, Must Have Movie!
I think this is a fantastic movie. Gary Busey did an excellent job portraying Buddy Holly. Though I am aware that not every detail of this movie is 100% factual, it still makes the... Read more
Published on July 8 2004 by Maria
1.0 out of 5 stars Not The Real Buddy Holly Story
This movie does not in any way portray the real Buddy Holly. It contains several inaccuracies, and, to me, Gary Busey is miscast as Buddy Holly. Read more
Published on May 9 2004 by Bill Emblom
5.0 out of 5 stars A simple but well done biography
This is not a huge hollywood production with slick lighting and camera work but rather a small production that almost has the feel of a cross between a home movie and a TV movie... Read more
Published on Jan. 18 2004 by J. Buettner
5.0 out of 5 stars The Buddy Holly Story
I'll keep it brief. Gary Busey delivers, in this reviewers humble opinion, the performance of a lifetime .. dare I say the role he was destined to play. Read more
Published on Nov. 15 2003
4.0 out of 5 stars Buddy Holly dies with Ritchie Valens and Big Bopper in plane
This is the ture story of Buddy Holly (played by Gary Busey) who was on the same private plane with Ritchie Valens and Jiles Perry "J.P. Read more
Published on July 31 2003 by James McDonald
2.0 out of 5 stars Gary Busey was on point in hit&miss film
while this film&it's take on Buddy's life leaves alot of error in time spots Gary Busey brings His only true noteworthy Performnace for His Entier Career here to me. Read more
Published on July 19 2003 by mistermaxxx08
1.0 out of 5 stars More than a few "historical innaccuracies."
Other than the title and a few of Buddy Holly's songs, this film has nothing to do with the Rock legend. Read more
Published on June 12 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars the buddy holly story
gary busey did a fantastic job of portraying buddy holly in this some what inaccurate biography of the lubbock texas rocker who died on february 3, 1959 along with the big bopper,... Read more
Published on Feb. 8 2003
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