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Half a Sixpence

Tommy Steele , Julia Foster , George Sidney    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 25.00
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Half a Sixpence + Finians Rainbow
Price For Both: CDN$ 46.99

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A constant joy May 26 2004
I resent the Amazon reviewer's caustic remarks about the movie, Richard and Steele. This movie was a true delight from beginning to end. The dancing was glorious and lots of it. The songs by this time were old friends. Incidentally, I've heard the cast recordings of the London, Bway and movie versions. A few songs were the same in all 3, others came and went, which I thought was odd. Tommy Steele (35 years ago, can you believe it!) was wonderful as was everyone, it was a little long (2 hours and 25 minutes), but it was always fun and exciting. I loved it. Incidentally, the villains were just nasty enough to get their point across, nothing to enrage you, and their comeuppance was also just right, not some scathing triumph. I found the whole thing a pleasure, just as I did 35 years ago.
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4.0 out of 5 stars cute by corny May 10 2004
By A Customer
When I was a bit of a wee lad I traveled back and forth across the ocean on the HMS Orianna from the U.S. to Great Britain. On both voyages I visited the on-board movie theater and enjoyed the same movie twice, the only movie they showed. Made sense, British liner, british popular film of the time. On both trips I was the only one sitting in the dark theater. "Half a Sixpence" - thanks to today's modern everything we can re-live so much of what we did back then, and have these toys bring our sweet memories back to life. But for the life of me, I couldn't remember anything, short of a couple of song lyrics, about the movie. Now that I've seen the DVD I understand why. What an empty bit of fluff. Cute songs, pretty scenary. But what was the message? What was the story? Part socialism (perhaps they thought edgy communism at the time - those wild sixties people) / part religious morality / all very confusing - I'm still not sure of the point. Are we meant to be happy being poor, but, money is ultimately ok to have? And, looking into the face of what is clearly a 'common girl' at the end and saying 'You're lovely" - is that the social statement? The subtle hidden message? But then, the final consumation, they barely kiss during the entire movie but at the end Tommy and his young bride actually rub noses, longer and harder than any other romantic display. Was that a message? Fortunately while on board I did meet a romantic interest, Allison. Ah, now that's a memory. And purchasing this DVD had me remember much, all very sweet. And isn't that part of the reason we grow nostalgic?
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4.0 out of 5 stars Half a Sixpence on DVD--Better Than None April 10 2004
Contrary to what another reviewer has said, Half a Sixpence was a throughly delightful show on stage, at least on Broadway, thanks to a great performance by Tommy Steele, a charming cast, and wonderful choreography by Onna White who went on to do the choreography for the film version of Oliver! The movie version of Sixpence didn't quite have all the charm of the show, but it does have Steele, who gives his all, a touching performance by Julia Foster as Anne, and Grover Dale from the Broadway cast (who would also appear in the Demy film musical The Young Girls of Rochefort. The production values are pleasing to the eye. I'd say one of the flaws of the movie is the unimaginative choroeography by Gillian Lynne (who eventually worked on Cats)--I'm not sure why White wasn't available. The movie includes most of the score of the show, but it cuts one of the show's best songs, Long Ago--it's sung briefly by a chorus at the beginning and is also used as background music but it was an important number in the show because it reaffirmed the love of Kipps and Anne. Having said all this, Half a Sixpence is worth owning because it is an example of lavish filmmaking we don't get to see much anymore. And it's a good musical that for some reason isn't performed very much, at least in the US. I just wish they would have done an interview with Steele about being in the musical. I believe this movie did much better in England than in the US when it was originally released.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Widescreen and Stereo at last! April 7 2004
By A Customer
British entertainer Tommy Steele appeared in three big-budget, reserved seat musicals within a year's time - 1967-1968, and then never made another musical film again. While Steele is one of the only assets in Disney's interminable "The Happiest Millionaire", he was much more well utilized in "Finian's Rainbow" as Og the Leprechaun. But his biggest starring role was in the film that came between those two - the gigantic film version of the stage musical "Half a Sixpence". Directed by George Sidney, the film massively realizes what had been a fairly middle-weight, mediocre stage show. Until this DVD release, the film has never been available on home video in its original Panavision aspect ration, with four track stereo surround. And what a difference this transfer makes from the cropped, grainy VHS tape of the film! Splendidly designed, beautifully shot, elegantly scored, and using both studio sets and sweeping location footage, the film is at least as big as "Hello, Dolly!". And that's pretty big for the movie screen. Stuffed with huge production numbers, long takes during the dance sequences, and a terrifically souped-up musical score (thanks to Irwin Kostal), this is truly one of the most dazzling, spectacular movies of its era. The DVD has no extras, but the transfer is quite wonderful to see, and it is indeed the full roadshow version, with intermission and entr'acte music included. What a wonderful treat to see this old-fashioned, razzle-dazzle picture presented in its full glory. Show this to someone under the age of 30, who has no idea how entertaining those big musicals of the '60s really were. Smashing, tuneful, and as the ads proclaimed "The biggest bloomin' musical of the year!"
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great fun coupled with a good dose of nostalgia
Tommy Steele is a bundle of energy and this DVD brings back happy memories of more innocent times. You can watch this with the kids and the vicar and have a good laugh.
Published 20 months ago by William Sinden
For the longest time I thought I was the only one in the world who could be hoping against hope for a widescreen stereo DVD of "Half A Sixpence" and thought it would... Read more
Published on April 14 2004 by Peter Gardner
"Half a Sixpence" is the story of Arthur Kipp (Tommy Steele), a destitute young man who inherits enough cash to buy half of London. So what does he do? Read more
Published on April 6 2004 by Nix Pix
5.0 out of 5 stars Take Me Back
I remember going to the theatre time after time to see Tommy Steele. I loved this movie, the innocence of the time, the music and dancing. Now, my children love it too. Read more
Published on Feb. 14 2003 by Jeanne Palos
4.0 out of 5 stars Wide-screen musical - Needs DVD Treatment
Director George Sidney gave this tuneful London/Broadway musical the full Hollywood treatment - leaving the film audience with a dreamy, family-style comedic, romantic romp. Read more
Published on Jan. 20 2002
4.0 out of 5 stars A heart-warming tale about what really is important in life.
I recently watched this video again and I had forgotten how truly nice it was to watch two people who love each other, find out the true meaning of that love, and what our riches... Read more
Published on Aug. 31 1999
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth the price. Fun for the whole family.
Sit back and enjoy this one with the kids. Sure, call me a sentimentalist, but after viewing this film, I went out with my best friend, found a foreign coin, and cut it in half. Read more
Published on July 7 1999
1.0 out of 5 stars A sickly singalong.
I used to watch this film as a young wipper-snapper on a Sunday afternoon in England, cup of tea with digestives, fire crackling in the corner etc.. as you do. Read more
Published on May 21 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars This entertaining HG Well's moral tale is indeed timeless.
In the footsteps of Dickens, HASP proves an entertaining musical with hidden moral tale as timely today as 25 years ago when it rose to popularity on Broadway. Read more
Published on April 29 1999
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