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Jason and the Argonauts [Blu-ray] (1963)

Todd Armstrong , Nancy Kovack , Don Chaffey  |  G |  Blu-ray
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (277 customer reviews)

Price: $21.55 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Jason and the Argonauts [Blu-ray] + The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad [Blu-ray] + Clash of the Titans [Blu-ray]
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Product Details

  • Actors: Todd Armstrong, Nancy Kovack, Gary Raymond, Laurence Naismith, Niall MacGinnis
  • Directors: Don Chaffey
  • Writers: Apollonios Rhodios, Beverley Cross, Jan Read
  • Producers: Charles H. Schneer, Ray Harryhausen
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Blu-ray, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: G (General Audience)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: July 6, 2010
  • Run Time: 104 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (277 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003HTSJ9A
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,497 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Jason and the Argonauts [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Special Features

Commentary with Director Peter Jackson and Visual Effects Artist Randall William Cook
Commentary with Ray Harryhausen and Film Historian Tony Dalton
Original Skeleton Fight Storyboards
The Harryhausen Legacy
Interviews with Ray Harryhausen by John Landis

Editorial Reviews

Fantastic special effects by Ray Harryhausen and exciting mythological adventure make this a film that is fun for everyone. It's the story of Jason (Todd Armstrong), a fearless sailor and explorer, who returns to the kingdom of Thessaly after a 20-year voyage to make his rightful claim to the throne. But to do so, Jason must first find the magical Golden Fleece. He selects a crew and with the help of Hera, Queen of the Gods, sets sail in search of the Fleece. Jason and his crew must overcome incredible obstacles including a 100-foot bronze giant, the venomous Hydraa huge creature with the heads of seven snakes, and a spectacular battle with an army of skeletons.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
97 of 103 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Rise Up, you dead, slain of the Hydra." January 3, 2005
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I've reviewed quite a few films featuring the work of special effects artist Ray Harryhausen and found reasons to like them all, but Jason and the Argonauts (1963) features some of his most fantastic effects, and is considered to be one of the greatest fantasy pictures ever made. Would I say it's the greatest? No, but in terms of influencing many, including a majority of special effects artists in the business today, this film is a cinematic landmark, and deserves to be treated as such. Produced by long time Harryhausen collaborator Charles Schneer (The Valley of Gwangi, The Golden Voyage of Sinbad, Clash of the Titans) and directed by Don Chaffey (One Million Years B.C., Pete's Dragon), the film stars Todd Armstrong in his biggest role, but not his voice, as that was dubbed over by Tim Turner, a British actor who did a lot of voice over work on film trailers, including the trailer for this film. Also appearing is Nancy Kovack (The Silencers), and a whole bunch of British actors including Gary Raymond (El Cid), Laurence Naismith (The Valley of Gwangi), Niall MacGinnis (Night of the Demon), Jack Gwillim (Patton), Nigel Green (Countess Dracula), and Honor Blackman (Goldfinger), to name a few.

As this fantasy epic begins, we see the plight of Jason as an infant, his father slain and kingdom usurped, as so the seemingly fickle Gods have decided. Jason grows up, returns to re-take the land and peoples that are rightfully his, only to be sent on a quest, by the Gods (geez, who died and made them Gods? Oh yeah...they ARE Gods), to recover a golden fleece, one that would bring peace and prosperity to the troubled land. Only problem is the fleece is across the world, to where no one has sailed before.
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38 of 39 people found the following review helpful
By Surfink
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
Jason and the Argonauts is generally regarded as Ray Harryhausen's masterpiece (although my personal favorite is still Mysterious Island) and one of the greatest mythological fantasy films ever made, perhaps second only to the Kordas' Thief of Bagdad, if not better. This review, however, is not about the movie itself, but about the Blu-ray transfer versus the previous DVD release.

A number of reviewers have weighed in (both pro and con) on the Blu-ray transfer, but I wanted to add my two cents, having just cued up, synchronized, and directly compared the Blu-ray and DVD versions. Those complaining about the transfer could not possibly have compared the Blu-ray side by side with the DVD. Switching back and forth between the two, the superiority of the Blu-ray transfer is not only very noticeable, but indisputable.

The contrast, color balance, sharpness/detail, and black levels are all much improved in the Blu-ray. The DVD looks flat (low contrast) in comparison, the sharpness and detail are soft, and the color balance is considerably off, with the whole frame exhibiting a reddish-orange cast. In contrast, the Blu-ray is very sharp (even on my analog projection TV), fleshtones are natural, and the entire color palette is far more accurate (especially the blues and greens), revealing subtle gradations in hue (such as the slightly different colors of the two harpies) I had never even noticed before. I can only imagine how much better it looks on a digital TV.

Furthermore, visible film grain in a movie of this age (particularly in the optical effects and Dynarama shots) is to be expected and NOT a problem with the transfer.
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74 of 81 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nostalgiac Fun July 27, 2000
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I popped in this DVD very wary of how I would feel about an old childhood favorite after years of not seeing it. Well, I was pleasantly surprised that the film is still a lot of fun. Yes, a lot of the effects (blue screen, etc.) are unconvincing and show their age, but geeeez, the movie's almost 40 years old so what can you expect. This was a real stunner in it's day and Harryhausen's stop-motion sequences still outshine any boring CGI effect in today's cookie-cutter movies (just look at the awful recent TV remake with all those cheesy computer effects --- there's no contest!) The skeleton battle is most well-known, but I have a special fondness for Talos which was the first scene that caught my eye as a young kid on Saturday afternoon TV in the late 60's. Glad to see that "Jason" still has it's magic (along with some acceptable campiness) and the DVD is a nice presentation (there are some slight flaws to the print materials and grain in some scenes). The Harryhausen interview (with John Landis) is interesting and the original trailer is also included on the DVD.
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34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars To Be A Child Again May 30, 1999
Format:DVD
One of my fondest childhood memories was to spend Christmas Eve sitting near a warm fire watching the annual screening of "Jason and the Argonauts". As a teenager I stopped watching the film deciding that I had grown beyond it. A couple of years I rediscovered the film and found that I enjoyed as much as I ever did. All I need is to find a cabin somewhere in the wilds, take my DVD player up there and spend Christmas Eve as it was meant to be - next to a warm fire with "Jason..." playing away.
There is a sense of wonder and imagination to this film seldom echoed in the special fx epics of today, all bogged down with stupid (rather than stupendous) stunt sequences. This is good fun, highly enjoyable and a wonderful story.
This is a good DVD transfer - the picture is excellent (finally, the chance to see it in widescreen) and the sound is good. If you remember this from your childhood and wondeer if it is as good now then let me assure you that it has lost none of its magic.
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The Blu-ray is English only.
Mar 29, 2014 by Craig S. Thom |  See all 2 posts
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