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John from Cincinnati: Season 1


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Product Details

  • Actors: Various
  • Directors: Various
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: French, Spanish
  • 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: October 21, 2014
  • Run Time: 600 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (98 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0010XB1WM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #27,880 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "John from Cincinnati: Season 1" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

John From Cincinnati: The Complete First Season (DVD)

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

Customer Reviews

Brilliant writing, dialogue, characters, actors, photography.
Rick Brewer
At base level, this is a story about family, evolution, human nature, and how each and every one of us is a product of our past.
Gekokujo
I think that pretty much tells the story - people either really liked this show or really hated it, there is no in-between!
G. Thornton

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

58 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Allison Lockwood Hansen on 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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41 of 44 people found the following review helpful By B. Boring on December 22, 2007
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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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By P. Brady on 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 By G. Thornton on 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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36 of 45 people found the following review helpful By M. Paraskevas on 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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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Sharon Cooper on 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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