Christopher Guest Collection (A Mighty Wind / Best in Show / Waiting for Guffman)
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(Sep 23, 2003)
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There's A Mighty Wind a-blowin', along with the gales of laughter you'll get from Christopher Guest's third exercise in brilliant "mockumentary." After tackling small-town theatricals in Waiting for Guffman and obsessive dog-show contestants in Best in Show, Guest and his reliable stable of repertory players (including Fred Willard, Parker Posey, and Bob Balaban) apply their improvisational genius to a latter-day reunion of fictional '60s-era folk singers, a comedic goldmine that Guest first explored 30 years earlier on The National Lampoon Radio Hour. Collaborating with costar and cowriter Eugene Levy (who gives the film's funniest performance), Guest is so delicate in his satirical approach that the laughs aren't always obvious, and the subtlety can be as wistful (as in Catherine O'Hara's performance as Levy's auto-harpist partner) as it is hilarious. Some may wish for more blatant comedy, but that would compromise the genuine affection that Guest & Co. have for the music they're spoofing. --Jeff Shannon
Best in Show
Christopher Guest, the man behind Waiting for Guffman, turns his comic eye on another little world that takes itself a bit too seriously: the world of competitive dog shows. Best in Show follows a clutch of dog owners as they prepare and preen their dogs to win a national competition. They include the yuppie pair (Parker Posey and Michael Hitchcock) who fear they've traumatized their Weimaraner by having sex in front of him; a suburban husband and wife (Eugene Levy and Catherine O'Hara) with a terrier and a long history of previous lovers on the wife's part; the Southern owner of a bloodhound (Guest himself) with aspirations as a ventriloquist; and many more. Following the same "mockumentary" format of Spinal Tap and Guffman, Best in Show takes in some of the dog show officials, the manager of a nearby hotel that allows dogs to stay there, and the commentators of the competition (a particularly knockout comic turn by Fred Willard as an oafish announcer). The movie manages to paint an affectionate portrait of its quirky characters without ever losing sight of the ridiculousness of their obsessive world. Almost all of the scenes were created through improvisation. While lacking the overall focus of a written script, Best in Show captures hilarious and absurd aspects of human behavior that could never be written down. The movie's success is a testament to both the talent of the actors and Guest's discerning eye. --Bret Fetzer
Waiting for Guffman
One of the funniest films in many a moon was hiding at art house theaters in 1998. Former Saturday Night Live comedian and Spinal Tap member Christopher Guest creates the ultimate parody of small-town dramatics, Waiting for Guffman. Corky St. Claire (Guest), an overwhelming drama director hiding out in Blaine, Missouri, thinks he has found the vehicle to put him back on Broadway: the city's 150th anniversary play, Red, White, and Blaine. As rehearsals start, we learn of the town's history ("the stool capital of the world") including a brush with a UFO. The mockumentary follows the various townsfolk wishing for stardom: Parker Posey as a Dairy Queen clerk, Catherine O'Hara and Fred Willard as stage-struck travel agents, Matthew Keeslar as the town's bad boy, and Eugene Levy (who cowrote the film with Guest) as a dentist who dreams of glory on the stage. The film is a hoot from beginning to end, and be sure to watch the closing credits. Fans of Guest's deft dry humor should not miss his other parody of the entertainment world, The Big Picture (Kevin Bacon as a student filmmaker who goes to Hollywood). --Doug Thomas
Top Customer Reviews
Regardless, these three films are easily worth the money at either price.
You've taken three amazing movies and packaged them terribly.
I was extremely excited to have received this "box set" for Christmas, until I unwrapped it. It's three seperate loose DVDs with no box to tie them all together. And to add insult to injury, all of the DVDs are encased in the old-school type packaging with the cheap cardboard cover and black "snap" latch.
Very disappointing. Warner Brothers SUCKS! They really need to work on how they showcase their work on DVD in the future. They could take a real hint from New Line which always releases their best films with pride and flair.
As far as the movies go, they are amazing and packed with extras. It's just sad that they would call this a collection and not treat it as such.
This is a very worthy purchase for fans of any of the above mentioned movies (just be sure to pick up the Tap disc as well, as that's probably the best of the four). Improv humor at its absolute best.
"Waiting for Guffman" introduces us to the quirky but proud town of Blaine Missouri, the Stool Capital of the world and a pre-Roswell UFO landing site. Disillusioned writer Corky St. Claire sees the perfect vehicle to get back to Broadway: The town's anniversary celebration, which will now host a musical called "Red White and Blaine." Among the actors: A dentist who dreams of stardom, a husband-and-wife team, and a Dairy Queen clerk. The stakes are upped when Corky is told that they might end up on Broadway, if Mr. Guffman likes the performance...
Who is "Best in Show"? Hard to say. At a major dog show things start going wrong. Among the contestants: A yuppie couple who think they scarred their dog with their Kama Sutra sex, a rather dull ventriloquist hick with a bloodhound, a bored bubblebrain trophy wife with a poodle, a gay couple, and a guy with two left feet (literally) who is haunted by his wife's colorful past. As they arrive at a hotel for the competition, human neuroses threaten to derail the dogs...
"A Mighty Wind" is blowing through the folk music world. Guest gets himself back on track with this film. The great folk music icon Irving Steinbloom has just passed away, and his son Jonathan wants to pay tribute to his daddy with a special memorial concert.Read more ›
Guest absolutely nails the 'mockumentary' genre, no matter what his subject matter: a small-town theatre production ("Waiting for Guffman"), a dog show ("Best in Show"), or a folkie reunion ("A Mighty Wind"). Fans will argue all day about which of the three is the 'best', but it's certain that you will find something to love in each of them. Don't miss the deleted scenes!
All the characters are clearly drawn from real life. Although employing many of the same actors in diverse roles, the films allow each individual improv performer to shine a unique light that fully illuminates the target subjects. My two 20-ish daugthers and I often quote from these films. The biting wit is timeless. Outstanding talent, craftsmanship, and creativity forms the heart of all these stories. Very, very funny stuff.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I thought I was ordering a box set but it ended up being three DVDs stuck together with packing tape. Read morePublished 24 months ago by Sarah Furlong
MY "GO TO" DVD'S FOR A GOOD LAUGH. I LOVE HOW RIGHT ON HIS CHARACTERS ARE AND NEVER VERY FAR FROM THE TRUTH.Published on July 2, 2013 by Nora Greitzer
I love Christopher Guest movies, and the price for this collection was fabulous! We will watch them over and over, and I recommend them to anyone with a sophisticated sense of... Read morePublished on September 1, 2010 by Jeanze
The description of these three titles as a "collection" is gross misrepresentation. The term implies something special or extended in nature, and it is just not the case. Read morePublished on December 28, 2009 by C. Roberts
Consider this...buying each movie separately:
A Mighty Wind: $5.99
Best in Show: $7.99
Waiting for Guffman: $13.49
Total: $27. Read more
For anyone out there who like the work of Christopher Guest then this is the collection for you. Granted it doesn't have "For Your Consideration", but it is still a good buy for... Read morePublished on April 22, 2008 by BitNerdy
great and hillarious!!! a mighty wind, best in show, waiting for guffman...i have watched theses movies countless times and it still shockes me how funny and side splitting these... Read morePublished on August 17, 2006 by pirate the cool