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Gosford Park [Blu-ray]

Maggie Smith , Michael Gambon , Robert Altman    R (Restricted)   Blu-ray
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (149 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 14.99
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Gosford Park [Blu-ray] + Ladies in Lavender (Parfum de lavande) (Bilingual) + My House in Umbria (Bilingual)
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Product Description

Product Description

Import Blu-Ray/Region A Pressing... The Academy Award winner for Best Original Screenplay, Gosford Park is a whodunit as only director Robert Altman could do it. As a hunting party gathers at the country estate, no one is aware that before the weekend is over, someone will be murdered - twice! The police are baffled but the all-seeing, all-hearing servants know that almost everyone had a motive. This critically-acclaimed murder mystery features a who's who of celebrated actors. With a diverse cast of characters - all with something to hide - it'll keep you guessing right to the surprising end. Gosford Park proves that murder can be such an inconvenience.


Gosford Park finds director Robert Altman in sumptuously fine form indeed. From the opening shots, as the camera peers through the trees at an opulent English country estate, Altman exploits the 1930s period setting and whodunit formula of the film expertly. Aristocrats gather together for a weekend shooting party with their dutiful servants in tow, and the upstairs/downstairs division of the classes is perfectly tailored to Altman's method (as employed in Nashville and Short Cuts) of overlapping bits of dialogue and numerous subplots in order to betray underlying motives and the sins that propel them. Greed, vengeance, snobbery, and lust stir comic unrest as the near dizzying effect of brisk script turns is allayed by perhaps Altman's strongest ensemble to date. First and foremost, Maggie Smith is marvelous as Constance, a dependent countess with a quip for every occasion; Michael Gambon, as the ill-fated host, Sir William McCordle, is one of the most palpably salacious characters ever on screen; Kristin Scott Thomas is perfectly cold yet sexy as Lady Sylvia, Sir William's wife; and Helen Mirren, Emily Watson, and Clive Owen are equally memorable as key characters from the bustling servants' quarters below.Gosford Park manages to be fabulously entertaining while exposing human shortcomings, compromises, and our endless need for confession. --Fionn Meade

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:VHS Tape
The upperclass friends and relations of Sir William McCordle (Michael Gambon) arrive at his country house for a weekend of shooting, accompanied by maids, footmen, and valets, all of whom will be staying under one roof. Sir William is a mean-spirited and self-centered old man, married to a much younger, emotionally distant wife (Kristin Scott Thomas), with many family members dependent upon his continuing largesse. The hilariously waspish Countess of Trentham (Maggie Smith), who believes she has a lifetime stipend, arrives with young Mary Maceachran (Kelly MacDonald), who is trying valiantly to become a good lady's maid. Ivor Novello (Jeremy Northam), a Hollywood star, and Morris Weissman (Bob Balaban), a producer of Charlie Chan movies, are the only guests without aristocratic backgrounds and inherited privilege. The atmosphere of the house, filled with venomous "friends" and relations, soon becomes even more poisonous.
The "below stairs" lives of the servants are also fully revealed, as they share living quarters, eat meals together, tend to the laundry and cooking, and gossip about their employers. The butler Jennings (Alan Bates) and the head housekeeper (Helen Mirren) run the household and try to guarantee that no real-world cares will intrude upon the lives of their employers. Since "upstairs" and "downstairs" occasionally meet very privately at night, secrets abound, many of them secrets of long standing. When Sir William is poisoned and stabbed ("Trust Sir William to be murdered twice"), nearly everyone has a motive for wanting him dead.
For director Robert Altman, the primary focus of the film is on the characters, their way of life, and their values, with the murder mystery secondary.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Well, strictly speaking he doesn't of course - Robert Altman never simply tags onto an established genre; he plays with it and makes it his own by turning it upside down. So, while the idea for "Gosford Park" may have been inspired by murder mysteries "Christie style" and by the likes of "Brideshead Revisited" and the BBC series about the Bellamy's Eaton Square household, we leave familiar territory the moment we enter the estate ... through the servants' entrance; for although large parts of the action take place "upstairs," it is manifestly told from a "downstairs" perspective. Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars --Wonderfully Entertaining-- Jan. 11 2004
Format:VHS Tape
GOSFORD PARK was a nice surprise. The movie was purchased as a gift for my husband and I and we had no expectations because we didn't know what the film was about. It is a British film, and although we recognized the faces of a lot of the actors, we were glad to have the opportunity to learn their names. The acting was superb!
The story takes place in the 1930's at a country estate in England called Gosford Park. Sir William McCordle invites a large group of guests to a weekend hunting party. The movie begins with Constance (Maggie Smith) leaving her estate to travel to the event along with her driver and maid. We're treated to wonderful scenes as the guests arrive with their own assemblage of various servants. The often-snobbish guests are assigned rooms and at the same time their servants are in the kitchen receiving their own room assignments. The interesting part is to see that the pecking order for the Earl's guests is not that different from that among the various servants.
The camera scans the room while people are talking and it's difficult to hear most of the comments. I guess the director was giving us the feeling of being in any large place where dozens of people are making small talk. Constance is very snobbish and we get to clearly hear her views about the other guests. When a murder takes place, a bumbling detective is brought in to solve the crime. He doesn't have a clue, but several other people are able to surmise what happened. Everyone has his or her own individual stories and that's really what makes this big film work. I found myself more interested in what was going on with the servants than I was with their wealthy counterparts.
I especially enjoyed the acting of Clive Owen, Helen Mirren, Derek Jacobi and Maggie Smith. Jeremy Northam as a Hollywood star gives an excellent performance and also demonstrated a great singing voice.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by madeleine champagne
1.0 out of 5 stars Gosford Park
What a piece of fluff. Even the stellar cast could not save this one -- what was the story about ???
Published 5 months ago by Marsha
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful movie
I ordered this movie because I had not seen it in over 10 years. I was excited to get it and watch it and it did not disappoint at all!!! Read more
Published 5 months ago by MovieBuff
5.0 out of 5 stars Review.
This too is a classic production, with a "gang" again of very fine actors. The musical scores are similarly beautiful, written by Ivor Novello.
Published 6 months ago by Barrie Fisher
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable. Worth the money but a little disapointing for Magi Smith.
We enjoyed this film but knowing how Magi Smith is such a wonderful actor, I felt the writer or (film adapter) missed many good opportunities to show the "cut and thrust"... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Reginald Husbands
1.0 out of 5 stars NOT AS ADVERTISED !
It's not only packaging, do not received proper edition as shown on site! Yet to view the actual CD...to be continued.
Published 8 months ago by Paz
2.0 out of 5 stars wouldn't recommend
Not one of Julian Fellows' best works. Poor plot and minimalistic acting - we found it not engaging at all.
Published 9 months ago by Hans Van Riet Paap
5.0 out of 5 stars PARLOUR MYSTERY MOVIE
Published 11 months ago by DEANNA
5.0 out of 5 stars period piece with allusions to Ivor Novello
My interest in Gosford Park flows from having read that the only "real" character in the movie is the famed musician, movie star, playwright, song composer and composer and... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Douglas Jardine
1.0 out of 5 stars Disc will not play on my region A player. I complained, and received a...
My disc not playable. I tried all regions on my Oppo all region player, and it just won't play. All of my other Blurays of all regions work, but not this disc,
Published 16 months ago by Warren Thomson
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