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Gulliver's Travels (Widescreen Special Edition) (1996)

Ned Beatty , Geraldine Chaplin , Charles Sturridge  |  NR |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)

Price: $7.93 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Ned Beatty, Geraldine Chaplin, Ted Danson, Edward Fox, John Gielgud
  • Directors: Charles Sturridge
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Special Edition, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Genius Products (TVN)
  • DVD Release Date: September 9, 2008
  • Run Time: 187 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001AR0D22
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,525 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Gulliver s Travels is a brilliant satire and inventive fantasy that basically invented the idea of even-television. With ground-breaking special effects by Jim Henson Productions, Gulliver s Travels is
the story of an 18th century physician who journeys are something of legend he towers over the tiny city of Lilliput, matches wits with a cunning sorcerer, and proves his mettle in a realm where horses rule and humans are beasts. Gulliver s Travels Special Edition now presents the classic for the first time in widescreen picture and includes new bonus features including a Making Of segment and interviews with the cast, photo galleries.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
61 of 64 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Splendid! December 28, 2000
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Contrary to popular belief, Jonathan Swift's "Gulliver's Travels" was never intended to be simply a children's fantasy / fairy tale. Although the Lilliputans are cute as heck, this story has some serious overtones. As a matter of fact, although more subtle perhaps, there are aspects of this tale which are as dark and bitter as the commentaries on humankind written by the likes of Dostoevsky, Camus and Kafka. Jonathan Swift never was a very happy man.
This rendition of Swift's classic is, in a word, fabulous. It reaches to the heart of the message Swift was trying to convey while at the same time is accessible to all. It is also appropriate for a family to watch. I cannot remark enough on just how well done this film was; it would have been so easy to do a half-baked job and let it be yet another ambitious television movie that somehow went awry. I'm so glad that didn't happen here.
In truth, I have never cared too much for Ted Danson. However, in this film he delivers a surprisingly exceptional performance. So much so, in fact, that looking back I can't imagine anyone else as Gulliver. The rest of the cast did a superb job as well, and the inclusion of Peter O'Toole as the king of the Lilliputans was a great touch. (Then again, when can having Peter O'Toole in the cast of a movie ever HURT?) The direction and the way they chose to tell the story was wonderfully done. The soundtrack (written by Trevor Jones, who co-wrote the soundtrack to "The Last Of The Mohicans" among other things) was right on the $$$ for emotionally gripping scenes.
This is the type of ambitious, fervent film-making that studios can be proud of. If one Jonathan Swift were around today, I have no doubt that he could not and would not have asked for a better adaptation of his prose. A GREAT movie!
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Immodest Production October 19, 2008
I recall being enormously impressed with this 2-part made-for-TV movie when it was first broadcast in 1996, and the intervening twelve years have not diminished it any. The production is fairly true to Swift's original, and contains many innovative and surprisingly-effective special effects (for the time). All of the cast members give boffo performances, particularly hammy Peter O'Toole in the role of a lifetime. But most impressive of all is the gentle and very sly interweaving of fantasy and insanity, where Lemuel Gulliver's state of mind continuously shifts between frames of reference both in size and veracity.

Swift's vulgar sense of humor is given free expression, and the biting satire of his political wit still rings familiar 270 years later. The film contains the free-wheeling giddiness of Terry Gilliam's "Time Bandits" (1981) and the time- and frame-of-reference-shifting vertigo of "Smoke Signals" (1998). Tiny details and thrown-away background elements make it a production for rewarding repeated viewing.

In short this is a film of Brobdingnagian proportions which has received Lilliputian acclaim. This is a gap of Yahooian injustice.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I know I usually give 4 stars as my best... January 30, 2004
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
But this Hallmark TV production was so exceptional, I felt five was the least this sucker deserved.

This was the first of an extended series of high-toned TV movies produced by Robert Halmi Sr. for NBC and ABC that had production values previously unseen on television. In art direction and general feel, this production of the Jonathan Swift classic resembled "Amadeus" more than it resembled "The Winds Of War" or "Mother, Can I Sleep With Danger?".

And considering the choice for the titular lead, comic actor and former model Ted Danson, it could have been a real disaster. It wasn't! The man acquits himself nicely as the somewhat incredulous Lemuel Gulliver, the hero of a satirical tale told by the very cynical Jonathan Swift, Britain's answer to Voltaire. (Actually, Voltaire was a good deal younger than Swift and "Gulliver's Travels" was written 32-33 years before "Candide", allegedly, but they _were_ contemporaries, and had even met!)

The story features very fanciful alllusions to pettiness, classic paranoia of the delusions of grandeur variety, pomposity, a favorite target of Swift's, and superciliousness. There's the tiny Lilliputians, their opposites, the Brondignagians, the equine Houiynihms, (who, I seem to remember, were supposed to resemble giraffes as well,) and many other fantastic characters, all rendered beautifully in this, the first of a distinguished list of first rate classical adaptations shown on NBC in the late 90s.

The cast list is unbelievable...people who had NEVER been on TV before, like Peter O'Toole, Omar Sharif, James Fox, Isabelle Huppert, Geraldine Chaplin (hello!), Shashi Kapoor and John Gielgud were sprinkled all through it. The sets are incredible and acting superb.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
The film is told by way of flash backs. Gulliver (Ted Danson) finds himself ashore in England after a harrowing nine year absence from home. Unfortunately, once back at home in England, he suffers from periodic flashbacks wherein he provides narratives about his adventures in Lilliput, Brobdingnag, on a flying island, and elsewhere. Also unfortunately, even his wife (Mary Steenbergen; wife in real life too) does not believe the contents of his flash-back narratives. For example, towards the end of the movie she is asked if she believes her husband. Instead of saying "no," she avoids the question by replying, "I believe in him."

Everybody will be able to enjoy the brightly colored pomp and fanfares found in the various kingdoms that are encountered during Gulliver's travels. The special effects are almost as good as those found in the early Star Wars movies. Unlike most adventure movies, the movie under review has a high degree of character development. The credentials of the actors, e.g., Peter O'Toole, speak for themselves. Excellent "character actors" are also found, such as the rustic wheat farmer who discovers Gulliver and displays him in a one-man circus. In addition to the special effects, the presence of a boy character (Gulliver's son) and a girl character (wheat farmer's daughter) enhance the attraction of the film for kids.

What the movie is really "about" is not tiny villagers, flying islands, or talking horses. What the movie is really about is certain bizarre aspects of the social order, found at the time of Swift's writing. For example, one goal of the Gulliver story was to protest the practice of selling (as opposed to voting) government positions.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great adventure
Good movie received in great shape
Published 22 days ago by Laura Williams
4.0 out of 5 stars I rediscovered this movie
Well done and more true to the book. I watched about 15 minutes of the latest Gulliver with Black. Terrible but this Gulliver is worth seeing and well done. Read more
Published 3 months ago by S. Mitchell
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Rendition
This version is so well done, and a great way to introduce kids to Swift's satire. If showing it to students, they may find it a bit difficult to follow at first due to the story... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Annee Hall
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have for any collection.
Great movie...a classic! Definitely glad I got this for my classroom to pair with Swift's version. My students loved it.
Published 6 months ago by Mary Vasquez
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable and True to Form
This portrayal of the timeless Gulliver's Travels story is in my opinion one of the top-ranking versions that have ever been made. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Kelly Robbins
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie, Great Quality
Love this movie and the quality of the DVDs are great too. It's a loooonnng movie but is split into halves so you can take a break!
Published 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it
Best version of Gulliver's Travels! I watched this when I was a child, seeing this as an adult still has me moved by the storyline and the emotion put into its creation. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Latoya M Michel
1.0 out of 5 stars Great movie, horrible DVD. 4:3 Letterboxed.
It's 2014. This DVD was released in 2008, at which point, arguably, the shift to 16:9 aspect ratio had begun and HD was becoming the norm. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Grand Conjurer
5.0 out of 5 stars Ted Danson is great!
Another dvd that I've been searching for and a must have. There have been others made, but this was my favorite.
Published 8 months ago by SteveV
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable
I got this movie because my VCR finally broke and I wanted to replace the movies that I enjoy. This is one of the movies that is relaxing and enjoyable to watch .
Published 8 months ago by Kathleen S. Bryant
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