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Cats: The Musical (Commemorative Edition) (1998)

David Mallet  |  NR |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (826 customer reviews)

List Price: $19.98
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Blu-ray 1-Disc Version $18.85  
DVD Commemorative Edition $14.42  
Other [VHS] Commemorative Edition $2.88  
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Product Details

  • Directors: David Mallet
  • Producers: Andrew Lloyd Webber
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, Letterboxed, NTSC, Special Edition, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Universal Studios
  • DVD Release Date: September 12, 2000
  • Run Time: 121 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (826 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004XMTJ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,894 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Cats: The Musical (Commemorative Edition)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • The Making of Cats

  • Editorial Reviews

    Additional Features

    The 30-minute documentary "What's a Jellicle Cat? The Making of Cats the Video" provides a backstage look at the video version of the longest-running show in Broadway history. After a brief discussion of the original show's start in 1981, the bulk of the time is spent on the creation of the video and the advantages it had over a stage production--a larger orchestra, clearer lyrics, and close-ups for better story-telling. There's plenty of rehearsal footage, plus comments by Lloyd Webber, director-choreographer Gillian Lynne, Elaine Paige (Grizabella), and other cast members. Of course "Memory" is discussed, and an excerpt of it played by the orchestra without vocals is positively gorgeous. --David Horiuchi

    Product Description

    "Cats" opened at The Winter Garden on October 7, 1982, carrying an advance of $6.2 million, the largest in Broadway history. In 1997 it surpassed "A Chorus Line" as the longest running show in Broadway history. On September 10, 2000, after 7,485 shows and a run of nearly 18 years, the show closed - a Broadway record. For the first time ever, an Andrew Lloyd Webber show has been specially filmed and made available on video. With a star cast including Elaine Paige and Sir John Mills, and its stunning production values, Cats will no doubt set a new standard for the filming of all future musicals. Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cats, the most famous musical of all time, first exploded onto the West End stage in 1981. 'Memory', one of its many classic songs, became an instant worldwide hit. Since then Cats has smashed records and conquered the world. Using the latest technology, all the excitement, thrill, romance and intimacy of this theatrical legend has been captured on screen. Breathtaking visuals and full digital sound (that has been completely re-recorded with a seventy piece orchestra) will lead you deep into the mysterious world of Cats. Cats - as you'll never see it again - more intoxicating and magical than you could possibly imagine.

    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    124 of 126 people found the following review helpful
    Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
    I am 77 years old.
    My beloved late wife and I were avid live theater patrons, both in GB and the USA.
    My wife and I were lucky to have seen our first "Cats" performance in London the first month it opened.
    Several years later we again revisited London and saw "Cats" again.
    Both times it was a remarkable theatrical experience.
    I just received my "Cats (Ultimate Edition)" DVD and it is the very best version of "Cats" I have ever seen.
    The extra bonus DVD that comes with the "Unlimited Edition," explaining in minute detail, how the play "Cats" was conceived and its production, is truly worth the price of DVD alone.
    Joe Levin, Las Vegas NV
    Was this review helpful to you?
    229 of 245 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Immensely Durable View of the Stage. Buy It April 15, 2005
    The `Cats' DVD is a cinematic record of the Andrew Lloyd Webber stage musical as performed on the London stage in, I believe, 1998 starring Elaine Paige in the `lead' role of Grizabella, although the only aspect of her role which warrants calling it the starring role is the fact that this character sings the `show-stopper' song, `Memory' which, if you are to believe writer / director Kevin Smith's bit in `Jersey Girl', has become a real Broadway cliché. The show is the most truly `ensemble' performance I can think of. Few characters stand out for more than the length of a single piece, yet practically all characters are on stage for over 50% of the two-hour performance. Aside from Paige, the only character / actor who is remotely familiar to me is John Mills who is on for but two scenes and who is more of a prop than a character.

    I make a strong point of the fact that this is a recording of a stage performance rather than a conversion of the play to a more realistic environment. This conversion is done for most Broadway plays turned into movies, especially for big musicals such as `Oklahoma', `The Sound of Music', `My Fair Lady', and `Chicago'. But this conversion is not always successful. That is, the very big realistic setting is not always an enhancement. My best evidence for this is the film done of `The Fantasticks' with a cast including such high powered talent as Joel Gray and others. As someone how has seen the play done on the live stage three times with three different interpretations, including a performance by the New York City cast, I can say that the movie failed to breath any life into the classic minimalist staging it gets in intimate little theaters. The movie was simply not as good as the live performance. This is clearly not the case with this DVD record.
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    57 of 61 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Life to the Everlasting Cat!! July 6, 1999
    By A Customer
    Format:VHS Tape
    All I can say
    I loved the VHS version of Cats. As one of those people who saw it on Broadway first, the video is a great way to bring back memories. It also gives you the chance to see facial expressions up close, and rewind great parts :-)
    Cast members who stick out (at least for me): John Partridge as Rum Tum Tugger (yummy! Good looking AND a great singer/dancer!); The fantastic Michael Gruber as Munkustrap (can't believe I missed him on Broadway..); Jacob Brent as The Magical Mr. Mistoffelees (this guy can DANCE!!), Rosemarie Ford as Bombalurina; Aeva Mae as Demeter; Elaine Paige as Grizabella; Drew Varley and Jo Gibb as Mungojerrie and Rumpleteazer (and they WERE NOT DUBBED!! Those beautiful, amazing voices are their own!!); ok, the WHOLE CAST was great!!
    One or two notes tho.. there are some PG-13 moments. Some er...interesting closeups (butt shots during Macavity.. and er.. crotch shots during Rum Tum Tugger), a little blooper where Tugger curses Griz (thankfully only mouthed!), and risque scene during the Jellicle Ball. If you have kids under say, 7 or 8, please watch it with them.
    All in all, a great buy! I highly recommend it!!
    Was this review helpful to you?
    58 of 64 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars When good videos go bad on DVD November 3, 2002
    By Kitty
    I own both the Cats video(best play in da world!) as well as the Ultimate Edition DVD of Cats due to my obsession with the beauty of this great play however there were quite a few things that kind of irked me when I made comparisions to both. One I couldn't help but notice the Ultimate Edition(in my opinion's) totally butchering of the music compared to the video. What the heck is up with the whole adding of dog sounds on the Pekes and the Pollicles, I for one love the cats doing the barking themselves! That and I didn't feel the whole intensity in the music on the Rum Tum Tugger song that gets me dancin to it, I mean I could barely hear the awesome guitar solo. All the tempos to me and a lot of the great sound effects from the video were cut or changed. Anybody know why the heck was that? Anyway I personally think the Cats video edition is the better buy.
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    19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars The best version of Cats yet! October 22, 2000
    By Carrie
    Format:VHS Tape
    This video of Cats is the best version of the show I have seen to date. I am a Cats addict and I have seen the show over 15 times with various casts, between London, Broadway and Japan. I think the cast assembled on this video is the best I have seen (more than just "competent" as the editorial review said).
    The only person I was not too keen on was the choice of John Mills, because of whom the excellent "Growltiger's Last Stand" was taken out. John Mills was great, don't get me wrong, but I wish Gus was played by someone who could have pulled this part off. I was very disappointed to see this part of the show taken out, as it was one of my favourites, and because of that some of the best performers on the video which are in this scene had their screen time shortened. Even so, the rest of the video is great. I did not get the commemorative edition, so I cannot comment on the "extras". I did not get it as I am not sure what exactly is on it. But the video of the show itself is fabulous because of the great cast - Michael Gruber is the strongest Munkustrap I have ever seen, Veerle Casteleyn is the cutest Jemima yet, Jo Bingham is adorable as Etcetera, John Partridge plays Rum Tum Tugger the way I always thought he should be played, Jacob Brent is absolutely amazing as Mistoffelees, Phyllida Crowley Smith is the most amazing dancer, Elaine Paige goes without saying, and I will not go on cause you get the message. Anyway, it took me a while before I bought this video, cause I wasn't sure if the atmosphere of the show would transfer well on the video, but it does cause of the amazing cast, and the fact that there are many close ups. Don't miss out on it, you won't be disappointed!
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    Topic From this Discussion
    Cats on Blu Ray
    Thomas; I'm researching that question myself. It appears the performance was recorded "straight-to-video" rather than film so may never have the high definition quality we're looking for. (Imagine how great it would have been if it had been filmed in IMAX 3D).
    Dec 9, 2012 by Jimmy Hooker |  See all 2 posts
    DVD soundtrack?
    I know! I've been looking for it, too
    May 18, 2012 by sweetishbubble |  See all 2 posts
    conjuring turn
    hi. have you been able to get your hands on cats, ultimate edition? it has the conjuring turns.
    Oct 30, 2009 by B.B. |  See all 4 posts
    sarah brightman
    Jul 21, 2009 by Carlo Castronovo |  See all 2 posts
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