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John from Cincinnati: Season 1 (2008)

Rebecca De Mornay , Garret Dillahunt , Adam Davidson , Daniel Minahan  |  NR |  DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)

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John From Cincinnati Season 1   $1.99 $19.90

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John from Cincinnati: Season 1 + K Street - The Complete Series + Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman - Volume 1
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Product Details

  • Actors: Rebecca De Mornay, Garret Dillahunt, Greyson Fletcher, Willie Garson, Bruce Greenwood
  • Directors: Adam Davidson, Daniel Minahan, Ed Bianchi, Gregg Fienberg, Jeremy Podeswa
  • Format: Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: Unknown
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: HBO Studios
  • DVD Release Date: April 1, 2008
  • Run Time: 600 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0010XB1WM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #55,041 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "John from Cincinnati: Season 1" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

A 2007 HBO television series created by Deadwood's David Milch, John from Cincinnati details a week in the dysfunctional Yost family--a family comprised of three generations of men obsessed with surfing who experience firsthand the perils of fame, paranormal events, and an inexplicable realization of the interconnectedness of man. Past surfing great Mitch Yost (Bruce Greenwood) had his career halted by a knee injury, but passed his love of surfing onto his son Butchie (Brian Van Holt) only to have fame drive his son to a heavy drug use that's destroying his life. Butchie's son Shaun (Greyson Fletcher) is being raised by Mitch and his wife Cissy (Rebecca De Mornay) and also possesses a deep love surfing and a talent that promises him a great future, if he can only get his grandfather to allow him to compete. The family's circle of friends and acquaintances seem mostly to argue, swear, and generally tear each other down and include retired and mentally unstable police officer Bill (Ed O'Neill), surfer girl Kai (Keala Kennelly) who works at the Yost's surf shop and watches out for Shaun, motel manager Ramon (Luiz Gứzman), Butchie's settlement lawyer Palaka (Paul Ben-Victor), and a few other seemingly unrelated townspeople. The mysterious arrival of John, who insists on seeing Butchie, sparks the beginning of one strangely paranormal experience after another for the family and community including unexplained levitations and visions, a haunted hotel room, and two resurrections from death. Somehow, John emphasizes the connectedness of both family members and townspeople and, while John himself comes across as significantly dim, he has a knack for saying the profound without understanding a word of what he speaks. As the days go by, it becomes apparent that John gives voice to the words of his father or The Father. This eight-episode series is an exploration of self-centeredness, fear, and faith and John's role as savior, doomsayer, unwitting pawn, or simpleton is never clear--the end of the season at day seven brings no real resolution or sense of whether the Yost family is better off or worse than they were before John appeared. A truly bizarre show full of unanswered questions and crude language and subject matter, it is somehow intriguing even as it is repulsive and unsatisfying. --Tami Horiuchi

Product Description

Just north of the border, in the tired coastal town of Imperial Beach, CA, live three generations of Yosts: surfing royalty turned society misfits. The Yost's reign and reputation, once defined in the cure of a perfect wave, has been eroded by years of bad luck, addiction and hubris. But just as things are looking like they can't get worse, a stranger named John arrives - and the Yost's banal existence is lifted into something profound, miraculous and, possibly, universal.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
54 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Put John Back on the 'waves December 14, 2007
Format:DVD
Only the damned can be saved...and that's exactly what happens when John appears one morning, straight out of the blue (or Cincinnati as he'd have it) to tell Mitch Yost (patriarch of a multigenerational family of competitive surfers) to "Get back in the Game."
Funny stuff happens around John. People go up in the air. Things, usually in satisfyingly impressive denominations, materialize right out of his pockets.
The dead come back to life
The living begin to come back to life by both reaching out, and receiving kindnesses from one and other.
As one bemused individual, drawn into the strange and mysterious goings on around the Yost's observes: "There's a lot of quick healers in this zip code."
Love, Healing, Redemption, Spirituality and Slight-of-Hand... Sometimes hilariously, sometimes compassionately, John is the catalyst (think Starman crossed with Harpo Marx) who helps it all happen. I'd give ANYTHING to see the story continue with new episodes! Work with us at [...]
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38 of 41 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
It's unfortunate that the term "groundbreaking" when it comes to television series seems to equate only to pushing the boundaries of sex and violence. "John From Cincinnati" broke new ground in narrative style and tackling the difficult topic of our collective subjective experiences that looked from the outside to be a simplistic family drama about surfing. It is definitely much more than that.

"John From Cincinnati" plays more like a fable than a realistic drama whose characters are simultaneously over-the-top caricatures and profoundly human. They encompass our irrational fears, damaging anger, tendency to cling to the past, and our desire to escape from it and change. These characters ARE us, and we look at them both in their specific niche and set against the tableau of the history of our species' existence ("big and huge" as John describes).

At the center of this is John who is less of an actual character and more of a personification of that which connects us and our own naiveté. He is a narrative device analogous to a Greek chorus. He serves as a reflection of a character's innermost thoughts and desires and strives to connect them to each other. He even literally does this as he imitates them. He stands apart from the rest of the cast to comment on them in his own bizarre way.

The writing is rich in its language and subtle humor. We aren't treated to immediate gratification either (and even the finale creates more mystery than it solves which is unfortunate in this case). Certainly airing immediately after the finale of "The Sopranos" when no one was watching handicapped such a series where continuity is significant.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful stuff - but not for everyone March 5, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
The excellent writing is often lost beneath the torrents of expletives -- but -- if you can get past that, JFC is totally engrossing. Miracles, mysterious figures, mysticism, surfing! The series was cut short to 10 episodes (from 13), so the series finale is a bit hurried. But the opening sequence (and Bob Dylan music) for that last episode is truly moving, given all that happened on the show's run.

So, giving JFC one star is right enough for those who don't get it, but those that do get it, 5 are not enough.

We won't see more of this show, and maybe we don't need to. It was great for what it was. If you're undecided, rent it. It's worth it.

KBrady
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I liked it March 6, 2008
Format:DVD
Yes, I am one of the majority of reviewers who liked this series. I watched each episode several times and will buy the DVD box set so I can see them whenever I feel like it. I am also disappointed that there will be no further episodes, and that Milch has left a lot of questions unanswered.

Rather than go into specifics, I would just like to point out that, as of this writing, all ratings here on Amazon.com are either 5 stars or 1 star. I think that pretty much tells the story - people either really liked this show or really hated it, there is no in-between!

If you want to get an idea of how polarizing JFC is just read some of the posts on the message board at IMDB.
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35 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best show from HBO in years December 14, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is without a doubt the strangest most wonderful watch since Twin Peaks first season...but actually... much better in sooooo many ways. Worth the price just to see Ed O'Niel and Zippy... on repeated viewing this show is one of the highest pieces of writing I've seen in years from TV...or film... too bad the show was cancelled but it still sort of works as a ten episode mini series..it leaves you hanging at the end..but somehow even that sort of works for this... Hey Milch and Nunn... just write a novel to finish it out for us fans.

mickey
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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HBO WAS WRONG TO CANCEL THIS SHOW January 1, 2008
Format:DVD
This was an absolutely wonderful show that only needed time to find a real audience. Quirky, intelligent, and well written, it was too cerebral to appeal to just the mundane viewer, which accounts for its lack of a huge following. It was also one of the best shows on TV in a very long time. Had HBO had the guts to keep in on the air, as they should have done, it would have developed the proper audience which it obviously needed for the powers that be to keep it on. Too bad it was so far out of the mainstream that the average Joe couldn't see it for the truly wonderful and uniquely appealing show that it was.

HBO needs to rethink its decision to take it off the air and put it back onto its schedule where it belongs. This show deserves every chance to develop an audience. After all, it is a show a bit off the beaten path; therefore, people deserve the chance to find it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast Delivery!
Great new boxed DVD set. I ordered it while sitting in Katy's Cafe (actual shooting location for the serie's "Imperial Beach Cafe") and it was waiting for me at home in... Read more
Published 13 days ago by Don Keeler
5.0 out of 5 stars Can John Fix me and my family please?
Son sent this to me, after I had just experienced Deadwood series. This is a masterpiece of work. I loved it.
Published 2 months ago by Timothy J. Donovan
4.0 out of 5 stars HBO classic
Weird story line. Saw this series years ago fell in love with the charictors..
Like some of the other hbo shows it was cancled and end abruptly.
Published 3 months ago by Andrew R Garrison
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes you think outside of the box
This series is in my top 5 of all time. Why only one year? Guess it was to deep for Joe App:)) Delivery was on time
Published 4 months ago by houcmg38
5.0 out of 5 stars JFC was a great series
I loved John from Cincinnati when I saw it on HBO and have watched this DVD series a few times. I know what I think is happening isn't probably what they mean, but its good. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Spike
3.0 out of 5 stars Surrealism and Surf Culture.
John from Cincinatti is flawed, but worth watching if you are a surfer, like surf culture, or want to reminisce about southern cali beach culture. The mini-series starts out well. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Nat Kat
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent TV Show that IMHO was killed prematurely
Excellent series that IMHO was pulled off the air way too early. Very complex story that keeps you thinking. Very interesting character / actors that keep you interested. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Quentin J. Lewis
1.0 out of 5 stars Abysmal writing that goes nowhere - Marvelous actors wasted
Idiot savant stranger who may have mystical abilities comes to a small (very) sleepy California surf mecca town where half the cast are apparently unemployed and spend their days... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Avg Joe
5.0 out of 5 stars Cancelled too soon
This show was so good, but HBO only gave it one year given it's odd writing style and uncomfortable subject matter. It had an audience but evidently that wasn't enough for HBO. Read more
Published 7 months ago by M. Brisson
5.0 out of 5 stars Ethereal
I loved this show when it was on HBO. It was cancelled way to soon. After every episode I watched I felt I was closer to some cosmic revelation.
Published 8 months ago by Crystal L.
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