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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent film with great extra features
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...
Published on July 3 2004 by Ted

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Who DOES Michael Bay know at Criterion?
How is it that this director of summer shoot-'em-up blockbuster fare has managed to have not one, but TWO of his films (the other being "Armageddon - Criterion Collection") accepted into the exclusive Criterion family, a label typically reserved for "important classic and contemporary films"?
Granted, "The Rock" was enjoyable. With...
Published on March 2 2001 by Charlie Peterson


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent film with great extra features, July 3 2004
By 
Ted "Ted" (Pennsylvania, USA) - See all my reviews
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. This specail contains depictions of errors made in action films regarding the use of guns it emphasises saftey and common mistakes including gun drawing techniques that don't "work" such as the "gangster grab" or the "wyatt earp pull".
There are also 2 features on the films special effects. One is on the dive sequence and the other is on other effects, like the cable car crash. There are also storyboards, production stills and drawings.
This is a must biy for fans of the movie as well a fans of the Criterion Collection.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Connery Elevates the Entire Film, June 15 2004
By 
Michael K. Beusch (San Mateo, California United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Rock DVD (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. But there is Connery, putting all the action into perspective by not taking anyting too seriously and grounding the material by recognizing what it really is: sheer entertainment.
Bay, Bruckheimer and company keep trying to push the fact that Ed Harris' desperate General Hummell is a man of honor, a real hero, etc., etc. Anyone who questions his judgment, like the hapless, simpering Presidential Chief of Staff at the first briefing scene, is shot down as a liberal wimp who would never make the sacrifices that Harris' character made for America and should shut up before one of the real men in the room shoot him (I wonder what George McGovern, Daniel Inouye and other liberals who fought for and were decorated for fighting for their country think of this kind of portrayal). Never mind that the General threatens to kill thousands of San Franciscans with nerve gas. Bay-Bruckheimer have stacked the deck by having the great Ed Harris play General Hummell, giving the character an inherent integrity that can't help but make him sympathetic. Fox News isn't this slanted.
In walks Connery who, in his big confrontation scene with Harris, gets right to the heart of the matter in a few lines. He correctly says that he doesn't see how "you cherish the memory of the dead by killing another million" and sums up Hummell's actions as "an act of lunacy." In one fell swoop, Connery slaps the collective message of the film across the face and shows that terrorism is terrorism, no matter if it's done by decorated U.S. soldiers with a legitimate gripe against the government. It's fairly certain that Connery, an executive producer of the film, purposely torpedoed Bay-Bruckheimer's testosterone toned view of the world.
In The Rock, Connery proves, once again, that an actor with a strong enough presence and a large amount of talent doesn't need to scream and shout to give a great performance. Nicholas Cage, Connery's co-star, bellows and shouts like he's on fire most of the film ("How, in Zeus' BUTTHOLE did you get out of your cell?!?!?!?!?!?" -- god, give it a rest, Nick!). Cage certainly isn't alone -- the rest of the cast buys into Bay-Bruckheimer's "this film is the most important thing you'll ever watch" mentality. However, Sean Connery, with his charm, wit and grace, throws a bucket of cold water over the entire proceedings and reminds everyone that the film is what it is and nothing more: a technically superb action film that exists merely to entertain ... period.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Maybe director Michael Bay's action masterpiece, June 13 2004
By 
Kenji Fujishima (East Brunswick, NJ USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Rock DVD (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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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Who DOES Michael Bay know at Criterion?, March 2 2001
By 
Charlie Peterson (Minneapolis, MN USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
How is it that this director of summer shoot-'em-up blockbuster fare has managed to have not one, but TWO of his films (the other being "Armageddon - Criterion Collection") accepted into the exclusive Criterion family, a label typically reserved for "important classic and contemporary films"?
Granted, "The Rock" was enjoyable. With cheesy dialogue like "I'll take pleasure in guttin' you, boy!" and "I drive a Volvo--a beige one", what's not to like? And, rest assured, Criterion will make this one look gorgeous. All those explosions in downtown San Francisco, not to mention Sean Connery's fiery dive through the furnace once on the Rock will look fantastic, especially after you've adjusted your TV's color settings with the color bars Criterion will most certainly include on the DVD.
You'll thrill to the car chases in San Francisco, as Sean Connery pilots a stolen Humvee with reckless abandon! You'll gasp as Nicolas Cage, who does a masterful job of playing Nicolas Cage, narrowly escapes a doomed Ferrari F355 from a hurtling, derailed streetcar! You'll shudder as Ed Harris' mercenaries gun down an entire Seal team in the Alcatraz shower room (all except, that is, Sean and Nicolas, who then manage to overtake a battalion of money-hungry assassins by distracting them with lines like, "Hi, my name's Stanley Goodspeed. Glass or plastic?")!
Yeah, this will be fantastic. Meticulous lines recreated in Criterion-perfect subtitles. They may even feature foreign subtitles, thereby making "The Rock" an international masterpiece. Probably some deleted scenes....that means more cheesy dialogue! And audio? Guaranteed! Nothing but the best. The problem is, unfortunately, that you've seen it all before. If not, you probably saw it the following summer, only it was called "Con Air".
I suppose Criterion, in their efforts to represent all genres of the film spectrum, must not overlook the high-budget summer blockbuster. In this regard, "The Rock" satisfies, even if the material is recycled and touched up with new, stupendous dialogue. Any film purist will appreciate the care which Criterion will apply to this print, as they apply to every other movie under their discriminating title. For some people, that's enough.
There you go--I've defeated my own argument. Put me down for a copy. Kudos to Michael Bay and his boys for doing it again.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Warning - missing content, Nov. 13 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: The Rock DVD (DVD)
This review has nothing to do with the quality of the movie and everything to do with the quality of the DVD.
The 'widescreen' is really a fullscreen movie with matting (horizontal black bars) added at the top and bottom. What does this mean? MISSING CONTENT. You just cannot enjoy the movie with this presentation.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie & price, Feb. 14 2014
By 
Donald Cyr "donone" (nnipeg MB Canada) - See all my reviews
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Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Rock DVD (DVD)
I was very pleased with the quality of the this movie and was surprised on the price for that I paid for it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT!!, Nov. 3 2013
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CAGE, CONNERY...can't lose...non-stop action can't lose wth Jerry Bruckheimer producing the movie. Sounds great and looks great on Blu-ay. A must for blu-ray collectors
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5.0 out of 5 stars cool tks, July 21 2013
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This review is from: The Rock DVD (DVD)
good show all great subtitles prefect I really happy to watch it cool we won't forget about dvd we will order more tks
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Rock, June 26 2013
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This review is from: The Rock DVD (DVD)
One of my favourite old time movie that has action and some comedy. Great acting and i recommend this movie.
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5.0 out of 5 stars good, June 12 2013
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This review is from: The Rock DVD (DVD)
Really good, really funny too and loved it since i first saw this movie!! Always good and full of action! I recommend it!
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The Rock DVD by Michael Bay (DVD - 1997)
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