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Slings and Arrows: The Complete Collection [Blu-ray]


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Product Details

  • Actors: Paul Gross, Martha Burns, Stephen Ouimette, Susan Coyne, Don McKellar
  • Writers: Susan Coyne, Mark McKinney, Bob Martin
  • Format: Box set, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 6
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: eOne Films
  • Release Date: Oct. 26 2010
  • Run Time: 60 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003VYCK1Y
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #20,582 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)

Product Description

Product Description

Winner of 13 Gemini Awards and showered with critical acclaim, this darkly comic Canadian series follows the fortunes of a dysfunctional Shakespearean theatre troupe, exposing the high drama, scorching battles, and electrifying thrills that happen behind the scenes.

Paul Gross (Due South) stars as Geoffrey Tennant, the passionate but unstable artistic director of the New Burbage Theatre Festival. Haunted by the ghost of his predecessor (Stephen Ouimette), he struggles to realize his creative vision while handling touchy actors, a jittery general manager (Mark McKinney), a pretentious guest director (Don McKellar), and his own tempestuous romance with the festival's leading lady (Martha Burns). The backstage bedlam mirrors the onstage angst as Geoffrey directs three of Shakespeare's masterpieces-Hamlet, Macbeth, and King Lear-one in each season. Guest stars include Rachel McAdams (The Notebook), Colm Feore (Chicago), Sarah Polley (Go, The Sweet Hereafter), and renowned Stratford Festival actor William Hutt in one of his last performances.

BONUS FEATURES - Exclusive episode commentary with Bob Martin, Mark McKinney, Susan Coyne, Graham Harley, Michael Polley, Paul Gross, Martha Burns and director Peter Wellington - Behind-the-scenes featurette - Extended scenes of King Lear - Deleted and Extended scenes - Bloopers - Trailer - Production notes - Song lyrics - Cast interviews - Photo gallery - Cast and crew on set

Review

"Absolutely addictive" -- The New York Times

"Beautiful, intelligent writing and polished acting" -- The Wall Street Journal

"Pitch-perfect drama and comedy" -- San Francisco Chronicle

"Terrific, inspired backstage comedy" -- Los Angeles Times

"The most fully satisfying slice of entertainment in ages" -- Newsday

Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Reader on Sept. 4 2010
Format: DVD
I love this series: it's funny, it's serious, it's insightful, with fantastic acting all round, even the minor characters are well-developed. And, although the story centers on the dramas that go on behind the scenes of a theatre company, I think it really touches on more than just that: the foibles of human relationships in general, in all their varied forms. The writers have a deft touch: they knew exactly how much to exaggerate the characters so that they are funny and yet still convincingly convey their deeply flawed and complex humanity. And, along the way I also learned something about Hamlet, Macbeth and King Lear!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Jaclyn Ludwig on April 29 2008
Format: DVD
Slings and Arrows is one of my favourite shows. While you can go wrong with a lot of Canadian programming, this is not one of those. It's an excellent series with accomplished acting. Good quality video and music. It kept my attention throughout the series. I definitely recommend for anyone who has even a little interest in theatre, and even for those who do not. It is fun and engaging coming from almost any perspective. The price for the box set is a great deal as well.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jeanie on Sept. 5 2009
Format: DVD
Anyone who has any experience with the production side of Canadian theatre, and even anyone who hasn't, will find themselves laughing to the point of tears at this wonderful look at the inner workings of a "major Canadian theatre festival" (not meaning any specific festival, of course).
Paul Gross, Martha Burns, and the rest of the cast create vivid, memorable characters, and the series would be worth getting just for the opportunity to see how Shakespeare should be played! William Hutt, appearing as King Lear (in Season 3) is quite simply magnificent - his storm scene, and Cordelia's death, reduce me to weeping each time I watch (and it is definitely worth watching more than once). And there are other subtle touches - the hiring of a young Hollywood heartthrob as Hamlet (surely not a nod at Keanu Reeves, at Manitoba Theatre Centre) is particularly noteworthy, as he is led into the world of real acting.
There's some pretty raw language (quite a lot, to be truthful), but not enough to discourage adults who live in the real world.
Highly recommended!
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By Brian Ashe TOP 1000 REVIEWER on Dec 28 2010
Format: DVD
This is the best Canadian TV series ever produced. Tightly modelled on the Stratford Festival, the first season starts with a truly mediocre production of Midsummer Night's Dream followed by the drunken artistic director being run over by a pig truck ("Canada's Best Hams"). This leads to Paul Gross' character being brought in as acting artistic director. Ten years before he had had a psychotic episode on stage while playing Hamlet, and an unresolved affair with the leading lady (a lovely bitchy Martha Henry). Despite being dead, the ex-artistic director continues to appear, only to Paul Gross, and at the worst possible moments, and has a major effect on the next three years.

Spanning three seasons in only 18 episodes, this show should be actionable. The characters are easily recognizable to Stratford watchers, and they are not potrayed as very smart or lovable. Why there hasn't been a libel or defamation suit beats me. Each episode rocks. All of the actors are excellent, there are no weak spots. From the corporate takeover to the abysmal advertizing ("Froghammer"), from the assistant to the artistic director to the nerdy financial director (who co-wrote the script), from the ex-psychotic artistic director to the truly psychotic guest director ("deal with it"), from the American film star guest artist who has never done Shakespeare, to the dying actor who absolutely needs to do Lear before he dies, the scripts ring true. And truly hilarious, even if you don't know Shakespeare or Stratford politics.

Again, this is the best Canadian TV series ever produced. If you liked Shakespeare in Love, you will be ecstatic about this.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Angelo on Nov. 29 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I have to say, I have not laughed so hard in ages! This series is an absolutely hilarious portrayal of the extreme characters involved with the stage, full of witty dialogue and plenty of sly in-jokes for anyone who is the least bit acquainted with the real-life Stratford festival.

However, to call this series simply a comedy does not do it justice. It is full of heart, especially in developing the many relationships, and the way the character of Geoffrey Tennant grows and struggles over three seasons. On top of all of this, the love and passion the characters have for Shakespeare will inspire you to revisit these classics and rediscover them for yourself.

Exceptional acting all around, though Paul Gross deserves special mention for making the haunted/manic/goofy Geoffrey so appealing that your heart just bleeds for him with every misfortune he has to endure. I can't recommend this series enough!
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Format: DVD
One of the funniest series ever produced for television. A great satire of survival in the theatre, equally skewering actors, writers, directors, administrators, sponsors, the media, the government, etc. Think of a theatre cliché and it's in here : blowhard actors and ditsy divas, aging bit players, avant-garde directors, sinister boardroom antics, backstage romances, media svengalis, quirky audiences, disastrous rehearsals and opening night pandemonium, ghosts and superstitions, plot twists galore... Only one sour note : subtitles are not available and the bonus material could have been better organized.
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