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Liza With A "Z"


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Liza With A "Z" + Liza Minnelli: Live from Radio City Music Hall + Cabaret (DVD)
Price for all three: $36.10

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Product Details

  • Actors: Liza Minnelli
  • Directors: Bob Fosse
  • Format: Collector's Edition, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Showtime Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: April 4, 2006
  • Run Time: 55 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000EBFLHC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #27,466 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Liza With A "Z"" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Includes Grammy-winning original Liza with a "Z" soundtrack on separate CD
  • Remarkably candid, fulll-length program commentary by Liza herself
  • Fan Q&A with Liza at the 2005 Toronto Film Festival
  • Liza's performance at the 2005 GLAAD Awards
  • Liza interviews legendary "Cabaret," New York, New York" and "Chicago" composer John Kander
  • The complete "Biography: Liza Minnelli" from A&E Network
  • Biographies of Liza Minnelli and Bob Fosse

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

With all her recent misadventures, it's hard to remember that Liza Minelli was once a startlingly impressive stage performer, following in her mother's footsteps (Judy Garland, for those that haven't been paying attention). This made for TV concert from 1972 shines the spotlight on Liza at her peak, with songs by Kander & Ebb and choreography by Bob Fosse. Forget everything else; all you need to know and remember about Liza Minelli is right here.

Amazon.com

The DVD Holy Grail for Liza Minnelli fans finally surfaces after 30-some years: Liza with a "Z", a splashy TV special from 1972. And wow, is it ever a product of its era. Minnelli and director-choreographer Bob Fosse were at the top of their popularity in 1972, having just made Cabaret, the blockbuster musical for which both won Oscars. Liza with a "Z" places the still-coltish Minnelli on the stage of the Lyceum Theater, in a one-night-only performance covered by Fosse's eight cameras. Songs by Cabaret composers John Kander and Fred Ebb provide a spine for the show, including a breathless rendition of "Ring Them Bells" and the tongue-twisting "Say Liza (Liza with a 'Z')," a goofball number that sounds more like one of Danny Kaye's patter songs than a tune for Liza Minnelli.

Liza treats each song as an emotional Mount Everest, never holding back a thing, and the result is a psychodrama played out in the klieg lights. (The outrageous costumes by Halston don't hold back a thing, either; Studio 54, here we come!) Memories of the all-or-nothing style of her mother, Judy Garland, are already heavy in the air by the time Minnelli reaches "My Mammy," and workouts on "God Bless the Child" and "Son of a Preacher Man" confirm the singer's approach.

As for Fosse's choreography, there are signature moves aplenty--his dancing so frequently suggested a choreographer lusting for actual sex to break out on stage. "Bye Bye Blackbird" gives Minnelli and her backup dancers a chance to stretch out in an echt-Fosse feast of bowler hats and white gloves. The bell-and-booty shaking in "Ring Them Bells" and the loony tuxedo-clad cowpokes in "I Gotcha" hint that Fosse was in the midst of a manic phase. Speaking of which, Minnelli tackling Joe Tex's "I Gotcha" is one of those jaw-dropping mismatches that she salvages only through dint of daft commitment. No quarreling with the Cabaret medley; say want you want about Liza, she owns those songs. Minnelli and Fosse won Emmys for the show. The restoration of the original materials looks about as good as can be expected, with the spirit of a glitzy seventies TV variety special quite intact. --Robert Horton

Customer Reviews

Great 5.1 sound and DVD quality!
Eduardo
If you love musicals, or Broadway, or Liza Minnelli, or Bob Fosse, you need this DVD.
Cynthia B. Astle
It is Fresh, Showy, Talent packed and GREAT performances.
Richard J. Marino

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

73 of 75 people found the following review helpful By Alejandra Vernon HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 1, 2006
Format: DVD
This "Concert for Television" from 1972 has been beautifully restored, in a DVD package that has lots of extras, and will delight all of Liza's fans, as well as those who admire choreographer/director Bob Fosse. Liza's natural sensuality fits into Fosse's unique (and difficult to master) choreography as if she was born to dance it, and she is one of the best interpreters of his work, which is no easy feat. Liza is fantastic in this concert, with her one-of-a-kind talent shining in every number. With 4 (Halston) costume changes, the show has sections of solo "spotlight" songs, and several production numbers where she is joined by some superb backup dancers, who unfortunately have not been given credit...my only other complaint is that with the running time of 1 hour, one wants more of this terrific multi award winning show! Those who enjoy this concert will also like the 1992 concert with Charles Aznavour at the Palais des Congres available on DVD.

The songs are:
1: "Yes," from the Kander & Ebb show "70, Girls, 70."
2: "God Bless the Child," a marvelous take on the Billie Holiday classic.
3: "Say Liza," a novelty John Kander number and the show's title song.
4: "It Was a Good Time," a touching song where Liza gets to use her acting talent.
5: "I Gottcha," the first of 3 production numbers, with Liza in a red micro mini.
6: "Son of a Preacher Man."
7: "Ring Them Bells" is very amusing with Liza having to travel to Europe to meet the boy next door.
8: "Bye Bye Blackbird," the standout number for choreography, staging and performance. Liza dazzles in black velvet!
9: "You've Let Yourself Go," Charles Aznavour's mature love song, and few can sing Aznavour like Liza.
10: "My Mammy," wonderful!
11: "Cabaret" medley ("Wilkommen," "Married," "Money," "Maybe this Time," "Cabaret"). What can you say...Liza IS Sally Bowles!
12: Curtain calls and titles.
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56 of 62 people found the following review helpful By California Greg VINE VOICE on March 1, 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Not seen since its initial airing in September, 1972, fans of Liza Minnelli have waited patiently for over 30 years to have this show released on DVD. The recording has never gone out of print for good reason -- it was Liza's first landmark live solo performance that was put to vinyl and by 1972, she had honed her talents and worked out her material and it all came together in an extraordinary achievement under the amazing hand of director Bob Fosse. Kander & Ebb, Fosse and Minnelli all had quite a time of it in 1972 with triumphs on film, television and the theatre.

I've only seen clips of the show over the years and look forward to sitting down and seeing it as those lucky enough in the audience did. Shot on film for a unique and different approach to the traditional variety or musical show, it's more like a movie of a concert than a TV special.

Grab this one right away...lest it disappear from the shelves for another 30 years!

UPDATE: I saw the show in Los Angeles on 03/23/06 at a screening with Liza herself, sponsored by the TV Academy, and it's truly amazing. I've had the album for years so I know every song, but to actually see the show as it was intended added a whole new layer and dimension. In the discussion panel afterwards (featuring Minnelli and the producers), they said, and rightly so, after the years of bad headlines and drama played out in the public, putting this out points the press back in the direction of what they should be talking about -- the singular and stunning talent that is Liza.

Run don't walk...and see what real talent is all about. This is it!
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful By David Kusumoto on April 14, 2006
Format: DVD
Rather than review the fantastic material in this wonderful "time capsule," I want to add a few comments about the technical quality of this DVD.

In nearly all of the extras, especially the panel discussion that's worth the price of the DVD itself, you're looking at contemporary digital video.

However, in the restoration of "Liza with a "Z" -- the 1972 program itself -- it must be noted that the video quality isn't up to the quality of the audio.

In fairness, this video restoration was based on raw material that was originally captured on 16 millimeter film. This is the kind of lower grade film stock shown in schools and small auditoriums. And small TV screens.

When you blow up 16-millimeter film stock (rather than standard 35-millimeter), you'll sometimes get, depending upon the size of your display screen -- a fuzzy, off-and-on, "out of focus" appearance.

This is most apparent in close-ups of Liza's face. The colors are brilliant, the sound is wonderful, the production is spectacular -- but this show was not intended for big-screen projection screens now available at electronics stores in the 21st century.

The intermittent fuzziness is more noticeable watching "Liza with a "Z" on a 32-inch TV screen vs. your computer.

One can only imagine the horrific problems that must have emerged during the restoration of this important historical document. That we're able to view anything at all with no degradation in color or sound is a miracle.

So to that end, customers -- be advised that this package is still, in my view, worth every penny.
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Topic From this Discussion
LIZA LIZA LIZA..WE LOVE YOU SO MUCH
I saw Liza With A Z while stationed in California, and was lucky enough to travel to Lake Tahoe where I saw Liza live...I think it was 1974...we were at a table next to the stage...her opening act was Paul Williams (of whom I had never heard, until he started singing songs he had written)...she... Read More
Apr 1, 2006 by Charles S. Mull |  See all 3 posts
Defective DVD's and CD's in this set. What's up with that?
I watched the A&E Biography last night, and the picture does indeed pixilate several times. And yes, the first note of the cd is missing. It's a noticeable mistake and I'd like to know how I can exchange it for one that works. I havn't watched the show itself yet, I'm afraid it will black out... Read More
Apr 30, 2006 by Amazon Customer |  See all 4 posts
Since we're on the topic of Liza, why isn't "Stepping Out" on DVD?
I too wish to know WHEN will "Stepping Out" be available on DVD
as well as "Liza In London?"
Aug 20, 2009 by Larry Heller |  See all 2 posts
Where is it?
You're talking about "Liza Minnelli: Live at Carnegie Hall" from 1978, I believe. It's available as an audio CD, but I Googled it and cannot find a VHS version available, let alone DVD. Sorry. I hope maybe you've found it on you own since then.
Aug 1, 2009 by TurquoiseEyes |  See all 2 posts
Comments from children in their 20's who complain about the video...
funny you resort to such a sterotypical generalization there

but i'm WELL AWARE BACK IN THE DAY FOOTAGE WAS NOT THAT GOOD AND FYI MADONNA'S BOOBS ARE SMALLER NOW
Apr 30, 2006 by paris |  See all 7 posts
Liza with a Z Be the first to reply
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