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The Grateful Dead Movie (Blu-ray)

The Grateful Dead    Blu-ray
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
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The only Grateful Dead video to have received a theatrical release (in the mid-'70s), this film is a real time capsule. See Keith and Donna Godcheaux as integral parts of the band! See the Wall of Sound! See the trippy animation! See Jerry with all-black hair! The photography and sound are crude and not on par with those in some of the more recent Dead videos, notably Ticket to New Year's or Downhill from Here, but its earnestness, and its focus on an era in the Band's history with little other video documentation, more than make up for the lack of polish. There's some above-average music, too, especially "Eyes of the World" and the ever-irresistible "U.S. Blues." --Anne Hurley

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Blu Ray release! Jan. 11 2012
By Stephen Bieth TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Blu-ray
I love the Grateful Dead and I love this movie. Coming out in the late '70's it is a classic rock documentary / concert film. The majority of the film is straight concert footage but it has some interveiws and a visual history of the band set to music. The film opens with a great animation sequence.
The Grateful Dead archive team did a phenomenal job fixing this film. The audio improvements made for the DVD release and then up graded here in HD audio are mind blowing (great documentary in this package looking at how they did it). You get am HD transfer of both the original 4 track mix (Done by Garcia) plus the 5.1 mix made for the films DVD release. The HD print of the film is near perfect for a film originally shot on 16mm. This is a must for any Dead fan. It is also a must for any lover of Rock music especially if you like music from the late 60's early 70's.
The only reason this is not getting 5 out of 5 for me is because the bonus disc is only on DVD. Most cases I would not care about that but this set has an additional 90 minutes plus of concert footage on the bonus disc. It would have been really nice to see an HD transfer of that film. It would even be better to have an HD Audio transfer for that as well!
There does not seem to be an overwhelming amount of film of the dead before the late 1980's so it's great to see this out. In one of the documentary they say there is enough film to make another release. Man I hope that comes true!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars There's nothing like a Grateful Dead concert... June 3 2001
Format:VHS Tape
...especially if you actually get to see and hear the band (not just the concert attendees). Allow me to elaborate:
Ok, I know that this review will probably get a lot of negative feedback.. but this is how I feel. I think that the Dead were GREAT during the nights they were filmed in concert. They all were amazing. It is great to see the dead live during their prime.. '74's STEAL YOUR FACE tour. The concert was great. 5 stars definitely for the concert itself.
However, I am very disturbed about the people who made this film. Yeah, it's ok to see behind the scenes and get audience shots sometimes, but the audience is shown more than the band! I bought this video expecting to see and hear the Grateful Dead.. not a bunch of spaced out hippies. The audience is shown WAAAAY too much. Also-- there are very few songs here in their entirety. It seems that when a song starts gettting good.. when the boys really start jammin', they cut to an interview with some spaced out Deadhead (no offense to spaced out Deadheads...) talking about how great the concert experience is.. OF COURSE SEEING THE DEAD LIVE IS FANTASTIC.. THAT'S WHY I BOUGHT THE VIDEO! I wasn't around the first time to see the dead live, so I was hoping that I would get a no-nonsense concert flick. The concert, or what we hear of it, is fantastic. If you want a no-bull$h!† concert, check out STOP MAKING SENSE... these filmmakers should take some notes from Johnathan Demme on how to shoot a concert. For God's sake, all I wanted was to see the dead.. not the Deadheads.
If you love the Dead, I still recommend buying this.. I don't really regret it, per sé, but I was very let down by the cinematic technique used in the filming of this.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Dead at their best Jan. 11 2004
Format:VHS Tape
I remember when I couldn't wait for this movie to come to the big screen every few years. It is awesome. It is The Grateful Dead at their best. I have been hoping it will come out on DVD. If you like The Grateful Dead during that time period you will love this movie.
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5.0 out of 5 stars travel with your mind Nov. 18 2003
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
The Grateful Dead Movie is a total gas from start to finish. It documents a pretty amazing scene, when 90 percent of the audience was tripping and enjoying an intense journey through time and space. The Dead were arguably at the peak of their powers during this era and the playing is fantastic. HIGHLY recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars It's a ten on the 1-5 scale. Jan. 10 2003
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
I am amazed at how many younger fans I know who have not seen this classic.
There is NOTHING LIKE the Grateful Dead Movie.
Watch the movie tripping, then get out your 1968-69, and 1973-74 tapes.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Culturally rich Dec 4 2002
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
This is one of the most important video documentaries w live footage from the Oct Winterland '74 shows. Happy, yet serious shows were we see the typical heads rolling in to the arena commentating on what they think the band may play; and at the same time seeing an important part of what I see as a 70 s in America were things like the GD were important to ventilate some of the political and social issues that were graceing the country and the world.
Awesome verions of 'Eyes', Stella Blue and Mornig Dew. Not to mention the all too typical Trucking. A gem.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Dead to the World! Sept. 25 2002
Format:VHS Tape
Unlike many other music fans my age (just hit 50 two days ago--Yikes!), I've only seen the Dead in concert once. And that was during their WORKING MAN'S DEAD/AMERICAN BEAUTY phase, which means it was not nearly as trippy and cosmic as I had hoped. At the time, I remember grousing, "If I had wanted Crosby, Stills and Nash," I'd have gone to see Crosby, Stills and Nash!... Give me "Dark Star" for crying out loud!"
Oh, the impatience of youth. Somehow I never quite got around to seeing them again. I still enjoyed their music, but as the concerts became bigger and bigger and more and more crowded, I lost all interest in attending one. I am mildly agoraphobic and besides, who wants to wait in line all day to get a bracelet which will ultimately allow you to purchase a ticket--if you're lucky.
Well, this is as close as I'm gonna get to the 70's style concert experience. And it's pretty darn good. It's nice to see Jerry still alive and without even a touch of grey. Eerie to hear Bill Graham talk about having a plane to catch. The Deadheads we observe are still kind of innocent and goofy--and kind of likeable in their own spacy way. Not a scene I'd want to be reliving in 2002 certainly, but it does evoke a kind of nostalgia for what was really a more innocent age.
And the music is grand. The Dead's languid sound was earthy and experimental at the same time. They always maintained that they were a jug band at heart, and there's truth in that assertion-- if you mean a jug band from outer space. Anyway, this video has a lot of wonderful moments, as well as a few where those of us of a certain age will be scratching our heads and saying, "Well, we were pretty SILLY back then, I guess!" Worth repeated viewings, in any event, even if you'll never ever wear tie-dye again.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Waiting for this one for a while!
I'm so glad to see this released on blu-ray! It was getting to the point that the only chance to own it was almost $100.00 new on ebay or almost $50 used. Read more
Published on Nov. 14 2011 by J. Bonvie
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the very best concert films
Rather than simply focus on the musicians playing on stage (though a lot of this is done), the film meanders through pre-concert setup with Bill Graham and the roadies interacting,... Read more
Published on July 31 2002 by Francis P. Ferguson
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely the best movie about the Dead!
This great movie has done something no other Grateful Dead production has succeeded in doing: blending the music of the Dead with the feeling of what it was like to attend a '70s... Read more
Published on March 5 2002 by J. Polsgrove
5.0 out of 5 stars Film vs. Video
This is one of the best Concert Film's ever made. The shows were actually filmed October 16-20, 1974, right before they took a year off to make Blues For Allah & work on solo... Read more
Published on Feb. 2 2001 by Shiva Ho
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the finest Grateful Dead video available
This movie captures all the energy and excitement of a real Grateful Dead concert. Having seen several concerts in person, I have to say that this is the best way to recapture your... Read more
Published on Nov. 3 2000 by Richard Sullivan
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Have, A Trip to the Past
I had more fun watching this video. Jerry is in top form, I adore Donna, Bobby looks like he's 16, but wasn't he? It was just a blast from the past! Read more
Published on Aug. 29 2000 by Vickie Murphy
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