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The Rock DVD [Import]

4.5 out of 5 stars 273 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Sean Connery, Nicolas Cage, Ed Harris, John Spencer, David Morse
  • Directors: John Schwartzman, Michael Bay
  • Writers: David Weisberg, Douglas Cook, Mark Rosner
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, DVD-Video, NTSC, Widescreen, Import
  • Language: English, French
  • Subtitles: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: R
  • Studio: Touchstone Home Entertainment
  • Release Date: Dec 2 1997
  • Run Time: 136 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 273 customer reviews
  • ASIN: 6304711891
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Product Description

Product Description

Hollywood superstar Sean Connery (THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER) joins Academy Award(R)-winner Nicolas Cage (1995 Best Actor -- LEAVING LAS VEGAS) in the action-packed thriller of the year, THE ROCK! All of San Francisco is taken hostage when a vengeful general (Ed Harris -- APOLLO 13) seizes control of Alcatraz Island, threatening to launch missiles loaded with deadly poison gas! With time running out, only a young FBI chemical weapons expert (Cage) and a notorious federal prisoner (Connery) have the skills to penetrate the island fortress and defuse the lethal situation! Edge-of-your-seat suspense and unstoppable action explode off the screen in this must-see motion picture event!


Between his high-octane debut, Bad Boys, and 1998's wannabe blockbuster Armageddon, hotshot director Michael Bay forged his dubious reputation with this crowd-pleasing action extravaganza. In it a psychotically disgruntled war hero (Ed Harris) seizes the island prison of Alcatraz and threatens to wage chemical warfare against nearby San Francisco unless the government publicly recognizes the men who were killed under Harris's top-secret command. Nicolas Cage plays the biochemist who teams up with the only man ever to have escaped from Alcatraz (Sean Connery) in an attempt to foil Harris's terrorist scheme. As one might expect, what follows is an action-packed barrage of bullets, bodies, and climactic confrontations, replete with enough plot contrivances to give even the most jaded action fan cause for alarm. It's a load of hooey, but the cast is obviously having a grand old time, and there's enough wit to make the recycled action sequences tolerable. If you're ordering this movie on DVD, be careful with the volume knobs on your home-theater sound systems, because The Rock could cause partial hearing loss and structural damage to your home. --Jeff Shannon

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
This review is for the Criterion Collection DVD edition of the film.
In this director approved Criterion Collection release, we are treated to some excellent materials.
The film follows the story of Francis Hummel (Ed Harris), a retired marine who takes hostages on Alcatraz island. His demand is that the families of soldiers killed in covert operations be given compensation. He treatens to launch VX nerve gas into the city of San Francisco if his demands are not met. A navy SEAL team is sent in to neutralize the threat. Helping out is Stanley Goodspeed (Nicholas Cage), a chemical weapons expert, and John Patrick Mason (Sean Connery), the only man to have escaped from Alcatraz.
The film has great acting and there are some good laughs in the film also. There are many action packed scenes including a car chase through the streets of San Francisco and the cars are often airborne when they go on the hills.
The Criterion DVD has many special features and is on a deouble disc set.
Disc 1 contains the movie with optional audio commentary by Director Michael Bay, Producer Jerry Bruckheimer, Technical advisor Harry Humphries, and actors Nicholas Cage and Ed Harris.
Disc 2 contains a theatrical trailer and TV spots, a video interview with producer Jerry Bruckheimer, a blooper reel, a special about the film's premiere on Alcatraz, scenes from a TV special "Secrets of Alcatraz" that contains interviews with actual former inmates and a history of the island from Native American times to modern times.
There is a special "Dos and Don'ts of Hollywood Gunplay" with the film's technical advisor Harry Humpries and Marshall Teague.
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Format: DVD
The Michael Bay - Jerry Bruckheimer formula, like that for the James Bond films, is pretty well set: lots of stuff blowing up, lots of bodies flying through the air, a cast dominated by strong male leads, women are very secondary, a very dramatic music score, lots of foul language and a very right of center political outlook (the military are always the heroes and anyone who questions the heroes' judgment are pansies or some other leftwing radical type). However, the James Bond films always had a sly sense of humor about themselves. Bond might save the American Space program, Fort Knox, Miami and the planet Earth, but there was always an underlying message: This is just for fun folks. The Bay-Bruckheimer films, however, have the delusion that they're actually fighting the battles depicted on screen. There's a lot of overwrought music, emotional scenes between the characters and slow motion closups of the hero(es) walking or running towards their battle with evil. The Rock, in this way, is no different. A team of marines, led by General Frank Hummell (Ed Harris) and disgusted with the way the U.S. Government has neglected the families of those soldiers killed in illegal missions abroad, has taken 81 hostages on Alcatraz, threatening to lauch nerve gas rockets into San Francisco unless reparations are paid to those soldiers' survivors. Heavy, heavy stuff.
However, injected into this serious mix is none other than the best James Bond himself -- Sean Connery. Even in the more serious early Bonds, Connery always managed to convey to the audience that they were supposed to have fun during these films. Bruckheimer and Bay do their best to elevate what is essentially Saturday morning action serial material into Wagnerian opera.
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Format: DVD
Okay, perhaps I am being very hasty with making that proclamation, since I'll admit I haven't seen any other Michael Bay film other than this one and ARMAGEDDON. Still, I cannot imagine that this much-maligned director has made a better action movie than this one. ARMAGEDDON was an ugly, bloated, flagrantly manipulative piece of action drivel. THE ROCK, on the other hand, may be just as manipulative, but I'll pick this very good pure action flick over ARMAGEDDON any day.
What's good about this particular action movie? Unlike ARMAGEDDON, THE ROCK doesn't attempt to be something more than good action entertainment. There are no synethetic emotions and all that nauseatingly insistent patriotism that seriously marred ARAMGEDDON, despite the fact that the antagonist of this movie is a former general who is looking for restitution for families of soldiers who died in combat under his command. THE ROCK is purely what it is, an action flick. As it turns out, it is a very skillful one at that, with convincing performances from all three leads (Sean Connery, Nicholas Cage, and Ed Harris) and exciting action scenes all around.
As for the plot, no, it is not particularly fresh (with elements borrowed from DIE HARD and even PULP FICTION), but the script adds some interesting elements to the equation, particularly with Ed Harris' General Hummel, who all throughout shows significant sympathetic human dimensions that make him stand out from the usual one-dimensional snarling villain. I liked those touches, as well as the twist at the end, in which the villains of the story seem to shift. It is with that twist that THE ROCK truly does stand apart from the action-movie crowd.
I always love a good action movie, and THE ROCK is definitely one of the good (if not absolutely great) ones. Recommended.
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