Customer Reviews


866 Reviews
5 star:
 (651)
4 star:
 (104)
3 star:
 (47)
2 star:
 (28)
1 star:
 (36)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


151 of 153 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We have seen "Cats" live twice, This is by far the very best
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...
Published on July 13, 2003 by J. Levin

versus
63 of 71 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars When good videos go bad on DVD
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...
Published on November 3, 2002 by Kitty


‹ Previous | 1 287 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

151 of 153 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We have seen "Cats" live twice, This is by far the very best, July 13, 2003
By 
J. Levin (Las Vegas, NV) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
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
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


239 of 256 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. It gives us the stage fantasy that needs practically no embellishment with a real ally or cinematic whiz-bang.

Like `The Fantasticks', I have seen `Cats' on the New York stage sitting in a mezzanine seat about 4 rows from the back of the Winter Garden theatre. And, while there is something about a live performance that simply cannot be recorded, I will say that this DVD (and VCR) recording is quite as good a record as you can get.

My most important criteria for evaluating a movie on DVD or VCR is whether or not the work wears well after the second or third or fourth viewing. For example, `Chicago' was fun to watch once, but I have no burning desire to watch it again. On the other hand, `Singin' in the Rain' I can watch about once a year and still find the time well spent. I will say with great conviction that I can watch this recording of `Cats' once a year and enjoy every minute spend with the experience, because I have done so over the last few years. The performance and its record are so durable that my second most important criteria for a DVD, a good commentary track, becomes unnecessary. And, the commentary track is basically a waste of time for a musical anyway, especially a musical based on famous poems written 65 years ago by the most notable poet, T. S. Eliot in `Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats'.

The play has the thinnest of plots based on a once a year selection of one Jellicle cat to ascend into some state of grace, presumably at the conclusion of their legendary nine (9) lives. The only other plot twist involves the kidnapping of the head cat, Old Deuteronomy, thereby preventing this feline apotheosis from being carried out.

This accounts for four or five out of the nineteen numbers. All the rest are based directly on fourteen out of the fifteen poems in Eliot's little book.

One may think that this work has but a single hit song and, therefore, the remaining musical numbers are second rate. This is certainly not the case. I find myself tapping my toe to all numbers, with especial pleasure coming from `Jellicle Cats', `Mungojerrie and Rumpleteaser', and `The Pekes and the Pollicles'. These are much more like stories in song than a simple ballad with easily remembered refrain.

Very highly recommended for anyone with a taste for musicals and worth a try for anyone who likes fantasy.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


60 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Life to the Everlasting Cat!!, July 6, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Cats [VHS] (VHS Tape)
All I can say is...wow...
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!!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best version of Cats yet!, October 22, 2000
By 
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!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


63 of 71 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars When good videos go bad on DVD, November 3, 2002
By 
Kitty (Tacoma, WA USA) - See all my reviews
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.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What the show is REALLY all about..., June 28, 2005
This review is from: Cats: The Musical (Commemorative Edition) (DVD)
I am a musical theater major from Point Park University who felt compelled to speak my mind after reading the other reviews. Most of the people offering advice in their reviews are missing the point of the show...and the story behind it. "Cats" is written by T.S. Eliot, one of the most masterful poets in history, through a series of letters. While he was travelling Europe he mailed these letters to a young, child friend in London. Each letter told a story of a different type of cat that Eliot had encountered. There is no plot. There isn't supposed to be a plot. The whole show is a series of poetic letters adapted to music. (And quite literally adapted, I believe that in the credits inside of a copy of the soundtrack it states that ALL lyrics, minus "Jellicle Songs for Jellicle Cats" are unchanged from T.S. Eliot's Poetry Book "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats.") As fas as the music is concerned, I have a personal theroy that Andrew Lloyd Webber made a deal with the devil so that he could write the world's most brilliant melodies. The songs are repetetive, they are supposed to be. It's a melody. I must admit that from both a perfomer's standpoint as well as an avid theatergoer, you lose something of the magic of the show by not being able to see it live. There's just something about how the energy travels through the air when you're in the theater...alas, the show is closed until Webber is bored with life and chooses to revive it. Frankly, "Cats" is poetry (no plot), set to the most brilliant melodies (which are supposed to be repetetive), brought to life by amazing dancers and singers, on a stage made COMPLETELY out of pieces of trash (that's a fact), is the longest running Broadway show in history until Phantom of the Opera topples it somewhere between Dec. 2005 and Feb. 2006 and is a solid piece of musical theater history. Knowing that, do you dare risk being embarassed by your family and friends by saying you've never heard or seen it? (Check out Andrew Lloyd Webber's website for short music and video clips: [...]
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I'm obsessed with CATS, but the movie was rushed., March 3, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Cats [VHS] (VHS Tape)
Ok, here's the deal. Weber and all gave a group of three international casts (New York, London and Germany)4 0r 5 weeks to finish the film. All the casts had to work under gruling conditions to the point where (even on film) Drew Varley (Mungojerrie), was seen in the background gasping for air in the background after his duet with Jo Gibb (Rumpleteazer). IT WASN'T THE CASTS FAULT THAT THE MOVIE WAS RUSHED YOU GUYS! The editing, if one could notice, was horrible and very noticeable to the eye. If you've ever seen the real performance in New York or London, even Germany, nothing beats a live musical. After the song, Gus the Theatre Cat, was suppose to have been another song called Growltiger's Last Stand, where Gus thinks back to his younger days playing the role Growltiger. That was completely taken out of the movie. The production of the movie also cut Gumbie Cat's tap dance act and Mistoffelees' solo dance. The casts were completely exausted, not being allowed to rest, which on the video is clearly seen. Yes, I love the Broadway Cats. But Andrew Lloyd Weber, since he directed the movie, ripped apart the magic of the real thing. Truly, I am disappointed.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cats the musical, December 15, 1999
By 
Craig Johnson (Prior Lake, Minnesota) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Cats (DVD)
This is truely the greatest musical ever made. It has drama, lots of fun songs, a wonderful cast line up, beautifully designed costumes, exotic makeup, great dances, wonderful music, and is really fun for all ages. When you watch this you really do become one with the Jellicle tribe. You are taking a journey into a fantacy realm and into the mystical world of Cats. It really makes you feel young. It teaches you the values of forgivness, and understanding, and that no matter what you may have done in your life to someone, or vice-versa that one should always forgive. This video for a matter of 2 hours plus tells you to let go of the outside world and all of its chaos, and let your imagination run free. On the DVD version you get an added bonus, the behind the scenes of Cats called 'The Making of Cats.' They show you old clips of the original London stage production from 1981, as well as the present. They have cast interviews, and a few more tid-bits. This video has turned the longest running musical on Broadway and in London, into a global phenomenon. Experience Cats on video or on DVD for yourself, and Let the Memory Live in Your Hearts Now & Forever.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars One of the longest MTV style videos on the market!, March 15, 1999
By A Customer
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Cats [VHS] (VHS Tape)
First of all, the music is wonderful. I loved the show and all the music from it, and the music is there, in all its splendor, wonderful to listen to. But, if I want to hear the music, I listen to the CD. I was looking forward to a video that would capture my joy in seeing the staged performance. This doesn't come near! There are changes in camera angle every 3 or 4 seconds. Very effective for a 3 minute MTV video, but extremely annoying for a full-length video. Shows are choreographed to be seen from the orchestra section - that is, the front. This video shows the musical from the front, back, above, below, both sides, angled, you name it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great video with something missing, December 4, 2006
This review is from: Cats: The Musical (Commemorative Edition) (DVD)
I was 14 years old when I saw Cats for the first time in NYC. It became my favorite musical and went to see it many more times over the years. This DVD does a great job preserving the musical for longtime fans and future ones. However, one of the best moments in the show was left out. "Growltiger's Last Stand" which is a continuation of "Gus, The Theatre Cat" was completely left out. This was an amazing scene with great choreography, a spectacular set that literally came out of the backdrop of the stage, and an amazing Italian aria duet between the cats Growltiger(Gus) and Griddlebone(Jellylorum). I am sure there was a good reason for it being left out. However, it would have been nice to have had the complete show preserved for video. It is still worth having in your collection. Especially, if the show lives in your heart like it does mine.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 287 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Cats: The Musical (Commemorative Edition)
Cats: The Musical (Commemorative Edition) by David Mallet (DVD - 2000)
$19.98 $10.49
In stock on December 29, 2014
Add to cart Add to wishlist
Search these reviews only
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.