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Pleasantville [Blu-ray]

Tobey Maguire , Jeff Daniels , Gary Ross    PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)   Blu-ray
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (279 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 14.98
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Product Description

Amazon.ca

Fantastical writer Gary Ross (Big, Dave) makes an auspicious directorial debut with this inspired and oddly touching comedy about two '90s kids (Tobey Maguire and Reese Witherspoon) thrust into the black-and-white TV world of Pleasantville, a Leave It to Beaver-style sitcom complete with picket fences, corner malt shop, and warm chocolate chip cookies. When a somewhat unusual remote control (provided by repairman Don Knotts) transports them from the jaded real world to G-rated TV land, Maguire and Witherspoon are forced to play along as Bud and Mary Sue, the obedient children of George and Betty Parker (William H. Macy and Joan Allen). Maguire, an obsessive Pleasantville devotee, understands the need for not toppling the natural balance of things; Witherspoon, on the other hand, starts shaking the town up, most notably when she takes football stud Skip (Paul Walker) up to Lover's Lane for some modern-day fun and games. Soon enough, Pleasantville's teens are discovering sex along with--gasp!--rock & roll, free thinking, and soul-changing Technicolor. Filled with delightful and shrewd details about sitcom life (no toilets, no double beds, only two streets in the town), Pleasantville is a joy to watch, not only for its comedy but for the groundbreaking visual effects and astonishing production design as the town gradually transforms from crisp black and white to glorious color. Ross does tip his hand a bit about halfway through the film, obscuring the movie's basic message of the unpredictability of life with overloaded and obvious symbolism, as the black-and-white denizens of the town gang up on the "coloreds" and impose rules of conduct to keep their strait-laced town laced up. Still, the characterizations from the phenomenal cast--especially repressed housewife Allen and soda-shop owner Jeff Daniels, doing some of their best work ever--will keep you emotionally invested in the film's outcome, and waiting to see Pleasantville in all its final Technicolor glory. --Mark Englehart

Special Features

Includes a behind-the-scenes look at the special effects used in the making of Pleasantville.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a triumph May 29 2009
By falcon TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
i really enjoyed this movie.i thought it was very clever.it also deals
with themes that are as relevant today as they were in the 1950's and it
touches on themes that were relevant in the 1940's.this film is set both
in the 90's and the 50's.it's multi-layered in terms of story and
content.there's a lot of depth here.a lot of thought was put into the
characters,as well as the story.it's very thought provoking,as well as
entertaining and even funny.not only is the story well written,but so
are the quirky characters.Reese Witherspoon and Tobey Magiure are
wonderful as the two leads.Jeff Daniels,Joan Allen,William
H.Macy,J.T.Walsh,and the great Don Knotts also star and are equally
good.Credit must also go to Gary Ross,who not only directed the
movie,but also produced and wrote it.even though there are some dark
themes,i think this a movie that could be,and should be watched by the
whole family.but parents should use their discretion.for
me,Pleasantville is a 5/5
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars revolutionary Aug. 3 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is an older movie.. but ever time it came on tv I had to watch again. Finally decided that I would buy my own copy to watch when I please, A true "right of passage" movie.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding movie! March 17 2006
Format:DVD
I saw this movie under the impression that it would be a fun and lighthearted exploration of the Leave it to Beaver fantasy. While it certainly delivers on that, it's the fact that this movie doesn't shy away from the racially-charged undertones of the era that makes this flick really shine. A bright, smart and thoroughly satisfying movie.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Pleasantville Sept. 28 2011
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is another weird film that is totally irresistible. The concept of traveling through one's TV set into a 1950s sitcom where everything is black & white is kind of neat to say the least. The presence of the "strangers" causes those in Pleasantville to start assessing their existence in a town that only has a ring road; you can't get out of town because there's nothing beyond it.

The film also encourages the viewer to consider if a "Pleasantville" really is something to wish for.
It seems like it should be a good idea where everyone is pleasant to each other, but too much predictability can be a bad thing. When laws are enacted about being "Pleasant" you know you're in for an interesting ride.

I enjoyed it immensely and would put it on the same pegging as Back to the Future, Mr. Destiny and The Truman Show.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very Good Movie, Nice PQ and AQ March 3 2011
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
This is a very well made movie. The colors and black and whites are great.
Nice Picture and Audio Quality.
Not many extras though.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Not like anything you've seen Oct. 2 2010
Format:DVD
I liked it because it was so different. It's a story of a boy that likes an old black & white TV show, like `Leave it to Beaver', and he and his sister gets sucked into it. They become the children of the featured family in the show. The boy is having a good time living the dream and the girl is a real rebel and does not want to fit into this world.

Since they are the anomalies in the show, they start to distort and change the show. This is a world where everything is back and white and the anomalies start to show up as colour in the show. One of things that I liked about the show was having colour images on a B&W background and the further you got into the movie, the more you saw until its all colour. It's a fun movie about the `butterfly effect' - where any distortion in time will have a cascading effect. Once they solve the mystery in the show, they are allowed to return back to their world.

Most movies you can but in categories but you cant with this one. There is no other show that reminds me of this one. It is so unique that you have to see it to understand. I hope you all have a chance to watch it once.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful film but also thought provoking. Oct. 5 2004
Format:DVD
A modern day brother and sister David and Jennifer argue over what to watch on T.V. He wants to watch his favourite show 'Pleasantville'(a black and white show set in the 1950's); she wants to watch a music show. Their argument leads to the remote being broken at which point a mysterious repairman leaves them a new one which transports the pair to the idyllic Pleasantville. Finding themselves trapped in this monochrome world they try to fit in whilst finding a way back to reality.
The people of Pleasantville have never experienced art, rain, colour, or anything less than perfection and have no awareness of a world or life outside of their town. The arrival of the two teenagers sparks a change and gradually colour and reality start encroaching on this little town. At this point we can see the uglier side of reality developing as some of the townspeople turn against the 'coloureds' and fight against any change in their existence.
This is a wonderful film to watch. It has its magical, whimsical side whilst also managing to address the issue of prejudice. Tobey Maguire and Reese Witherspoon deliver great performances as the geeky brother and sparky sister and are a perfect foil for each other. Highly recommended
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5.0 out of 5 stars Deep in the extreme! July 1 2004
Format:DVD
Who says Hollywood can't make a movie that is both smart and entertaining? Pleasantville is proof that it can. Here is a movie that is an enjoyable escapist entertainment. But it is also a religious allegory similar to The Truman Show, depicting the fall of man and loss of innocence in a variety of forms.
I don't want to connect the dots for you because you need to watch this movie closely and think about its meanings. When is it that people begin to take on color? What causes it for some doesn't cause it for everyone. It is a commentary on everything from the Civil Rights and Women's Liberation movements to Christianity, Genesis and the fall of man. And all of it is dressed up in a clever conceit about the good old days of black and white sitcoms.
Along with The Truman Show, this is one of Hollywood's greatest productions of the decade. One day people will appreciate it for the masterwork that it is.
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