on May 10, 2004
The AMERICAN GRAFFITI DRIVE-IN DOUBLE FEATURE DVD is absolutely entertaining to watch as only George Lucas and Francis Ford Coppola could offer!! This DVD (part of Universal's Franchise Collection of film series made by the studio for affordable prices on DVD) contains the two full-length films AMERICAN GRAFFITI (George Lucas,1973) and its sequel MORE AMERICAN GRAFFITI (B.W.L. Norton,1979) and is actually a double-sided disc,one movie on both sides instead of two discs which is mislabeled.First,AMERICAN GRAFFITI is beautifully presented in its original glorious anamorphic widescreen format (2.35.1) along with Dolby Digital Surround Sound and contains the original theatrical trailer and documentary THE MAKING OF AMERICAN GRAFFITI which runs close to 80 mins.Then,MORE AMERICAN GRAFFITI is presented in a crisp,clear new anamorphic widescreen transfer (1.85.1 to 2.35.1).The second film was shot using different camera processes which explains the differences in aspect ratios.The 1.85.1 ratio was used for some of the Vietnam and non-objectionable scenes while the 2.35.1 Panavision format is used for mostly the innovative split-screen techniques and race sequences which is interesting to watch,but it's not the best sequel.The two films and a eye-catching cover art makes this set a must for any fan of the films and that the first film alone would serve as the inspiration for the classic TV sitcom HAPPY DAYS!!! Thanks to Universal and lets hope that they will make some more Franchise Collection releases like the John Hughes films,and The Mummy as well!!!
on January 15, 2007
The general take on these movies is that "American Graffiti" is one of the best teen movies ever made and that "More American Graffiti" is a significantly inferior follow-up with a much less entertaining tone to it. And this is true - if laughs are what you're looking for. You'll find lots of them in the first one and few in the second. However, it should be noted that this is a rare instance where a successful comedy was followed by a sequel in which comedy was very obviously not the main aim.
Another way to view this two-movie package, with the films watched one shortly after the other in sequence, is that they together are a good depiction for today's youth of why the `60s are referred to as THE SIXTIES. "American Graffiti" is set in 1962; "More American Graffiti" is set in several periods from 1964 through 1967. With the exception of the absence of Richard Dreyfuss in the second movie, the six main characters and the actors who portray them in the first movie return for the second one. The first movie is indeed extraordinarily well done and is an exception to most teen-movie comedies in that the characters are very, very real. The second movie is fairly well done and is, for, the most part, a drama - with a number of parts being very dramatic.
Is 2007 significantly different from 2002 from a social standpoint for young people? I think most people would say not a whole lot. For 16- to 24-year-olds living from 1962 to 1967, however, the 5-year difference was HUGE - especially in socially progressive areas such as Northwestern California, where these movies' characters grow up. Cultural renaissance so often quickly turned to cultural upheaval, and many youths lost their innocence very quickly and changed their worldviews very significantly. "More American Graffiti," especially when seen in immediate follow-up to "American Graffiti," depicts, about as well as a movie is capable of do so, how significant, often dramatic, and comparatively rapidly occurring the social upheavals of the `60s were, and how these upheavals tugged and jerked, often very, very hard, on so many young people back then.
on March 2, 2004
What a great film. I have grown so fond of these characters over the years. So fond,in fact, that i was afraid to watch this movie. I had already mapped out the futures of all of the cast members. However, Mr. Lucas came through with flying colors. What a realistic and truthful telling of love and loss, happiness and sadness, Peace and war, and making up. Some of my favorite moments:
Our favorite geek, Terry the Toad, has a subtle,yet bittersweet, finale. He gains his freedom, and loses something just as important to him. And, 'car-man', John Milner, has a riveting performance as a drag strip racer. Every moment you wonder if he'll live or die. I was so floored, i didn't even notice the absence of Richard Dreyfus. His absence took nothing away from this movie. I will cherish this movie as much as i do the original. But, i think to fully enjoy this sequel, you must have an affection for the characters. I am way too biased.
on May 4, 2007
I would award 5 stars for the American Graffiti movie alone. It is well-presented here, and also includes some special features, including an informative "Making of.." documentary that features interviews with alot of the cast as well as those behind the camera. The movie is a classic, and is required viewing for any lover of fine movies.
But that's not all. The package also included the sequel to American Graffiti.. "More American Graffiti". This movie is not nearly the timeless classic as the original, but it is a great view for anyone who liked the first movie. Save for a few uninteresting plotlines involving the counter-culture in the 60's, the movie holds its own rather well. Milner's last race before his emminent death (this is not a spoiler, trust me) and Toad's tour in Vietnam are particularly worth viewing.
If you're willing to sacrifice not having the "Collector's Edition" of American Graffiti in exchange for having the sequel as well, then this is a great buy.
on January 10, 2001
I had heard many reviews on this movie. I heard that it was the worst thing he ever had anything to do with. I was a big fan of the original Graffiti and its soundtrack ((dispite my age of 15)). I heard More American Graffiti, the less sucessful sequal, was being rerealesed on VHS. A relative gave it to me for Christmas and I enjoyed it just as much as the first. The songs that were picked were all very good and I hope a soundtrack is released ((dispite the fact the Beatles were not included)). The stories were amazing. It shifts from year to year and tells us what each of the characters ((minus Richard Dreyfuss)) are up too. In 1964 John Millner is on his way to becoming a proffesional racer as he falls in love with a girl who does not even speak the same language as him. In 1965 Terry the Toad is trying to injury himself so he is sent out of Vietnam and back home to his girlfriend. No matter what he does he just gets into deeper doo doo ((seriously)). In 1966 we follow Terry's old girlfriend Debbie in her new life as a flower child. She really longs for a traditional marriage which her current boyfriend refuses to give to her. Dispite this she waits on him hand and foot. In 1967 Steve and Laurie are married with kids. Laurie wants to be more than a housewife but Steve just won't let that go. She runs away to her brother who is involved in a campus riot. Look for a cameo by Harrison Ford in this movie. I loved it and will cherish it in my video collection.
on June 28, 2000
This is a fine follow-up.Some carp about this one.What some people don't understand is that this shows those same lovable characters in a different time(they are older, more tumultous events have transpired in America since 1962 such as assassination of JFK, Vietnam starts for real, psychedelic drugs take off, polarization of American society due to the escalation of Vietnam War, changing styles, values, attitudes, perceptions,etc.), and so naturally the film is not going to be the "same" as the first one.It was a perfect way to capture the transition of the characters to the latter part of the 60s. The soundtrack kicks too! Basically, everyone(except for Dreyfuss) is back for this one including Harrison Ford who is now Officer Bob Falfa. I liked the Vietnam scenes the best with Terry "Toad" Fields and Joe the Pharoh. I don't think there was any other way to pull a believable and successful sequel off than to do it the way Lucas and Co did(you will have to watch it to understand what I mean---be advised this is very different from the first one).Excellent film all the way.
on May 19, 2009
Much has been made about how the magic of the first movie -- American Graffiti -- is lost in its sequel. However, that's the whole point. As Vietnam and Equal Rights and hippie movements took center stage, America became a stranger, even to itself, and to that end, writer/director B.W.L. Norton and the returning cast do a very successful job of showing what and how happened after that night in 1962, when Curt went to college and everyone else stayed behind. We see John Milner still racing cars on the last day of his life (probably the most touching story in the movie ... there is something so likable about Milner that you want him to kind of live forever), we see Toad going AWOL from that little firefight in southeast Asia, we see Steve and Laurie ironing out an unsatisfying marriage and we see Debbie (Candy Clark) doing the hippie thing in San Francisco. It has become a darker world in a few short years, and these kids who came of age in 1962 are having a hard time in it. The soundtrack doesn't end with the optimistic chorus of the Beach Boys, but rather the soulful cry of Bob Dylan. The soundtrack in this case has to do quadruple duty because the movie takes us from 1964 through '68 in a series of innovative, frankly mind-blowing segments. To this end, 'More American Graffiti' achieves its greatest success, ferrying us through four distinct time periods of the 60s using four very distinct cinematic devices. Toad's Vietnam is grainy and news footage-like, Debbie's San Francisco is split into three colorful screens, all doing the same thing but in a different way. Milner's 1964 California is clean and sharp. And as we see him drive off in his yellow Deuce Coup, we know he is headed for the drunk driver that will kill him. It's sad, yes ... in fact, 'More American Graffiti' is ultimately a bittersweet movie. Where 'American Graffiti' left us on the first morning of the rest of the kids' lives, 'More Graffiti' takes us through those lives, with all the little joys and greater sadnesses they contain. This is a very good movie. If you'd rather not really know what happened to Curt and Steve and Milner after 1962, that's okay. But if you want to catch up with them and see how it's turning out, this movie is the place to do it.
on July 17, 2000
MORE AMERICAN GRAFFITI follows the lives of some of the characters we met in the original movie and follows their lives from 1966-1970.
What I like about this movie is whilst retaining the interspersed ensemble feel of AMERICAN GRAFFITI, it also makes the characters mature: their transitions are believable - age and what's been happening around them has changed or kept their characters the same accordingly.
There are less comic moments than the original, although the bus scene will have you cheering for Laurie and co. with a smile on your face. The desperation of Terry 'Toad' to leave Vietnam meanwhile is hardly harrowing, but it does make you want him to get out of there.
And it all culminates with another special ending: the kind of endings that movies should try more often - not all the questions are answered and it's a quirky, original way to go out.
It may be a cliche to say it, but if you loved the first film, you'll like MORE AMERICAN GRAFFITI.
on April 1, 2016
It's much better if you have enough time to see American Graffitti and immediately
follow it up with More American Graffitti,,because it is the 2nd in a series of 2.It depends
on the viewer having,fresh in mind,the charcters,their original roles,and how they
ended up in the previous movie.Making a lot of the movie with 3 different views at the
same time,and fast-flashing views that look like the film from a reel-to-reel projector
broke didn't help it,though.Neitherdid changing some of the personalities...Joe is
the leader of the Pharaohs gang,and turning him from a fearless street hood into a
coward subservient to Toad-the jerk in the original movie- is just plain wrong.So is
having Toad asa leader,because hewas so subservient in the original.
But that doesn't mean it isnt good.A lot of people say it's not that funny,
but it isn't the first movie,American Graffitti,which they compare it to.That's setting
the bar too high...after all,American Graffitti won a name as one of the best movies
ever made,and then went into the movie hall of fame.But even with those
differences,there are still plenty of yuks.You just have to be able to accept that
not all of the cast is what they were,and that the order of importance is also
differences,it's still got plenty
of yuks going for it.
,you're talking about the
best...that movie went into the movie hall of fame.
the movie hall of fame
on June 6, 2002
I gave this movie four stars out of five for one reason - Richard Dreyfus is not in it. Apparently after he received his oscar in 1977, he felt he should get more money for doing the sequel. This movie is different from the first. It does not take place in one night but on New Years Eve in four years (1964, 1965, 1966 & 1967). Director B.W.L. Norton wrote the screenplay, expanding it from the George Lucas's epilogue at the end of the first film. The film is dramatic, funny and depressing. That was indeed the 60's! The music selected for the film includes Diana Ross and the Supremes, Martha and the Vandellas, Aretha Franklin and the Doors. It is DIFFERENT from the first one but SEQUELS should be DIFFERENT. I'm hoping that Universal will release the movie on DVD soon and in the WIDESCREEN format too! The film was shot in Cinemascope (2.35:1) and flat four (1.85:1) aspect ratios as well as 16mm for the Vietnam war scenes.