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Major Dundee (The Extended Version) (1965)

Charlton Heston , Richard Harris , Sam Peckinpah  |  PG-13 |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)

List Price: $14.99
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Major Dundee Extended Cut   $2.99 $9.99

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Product Details

  • Actors: Charlton Heston, Richard Harris, Jim Hutton, James Coburn, Michael Anderson Jr.
  • Directors: Sam Peckinpah
  • Writers: Sam Peckinpah, Harry Julian Fink, Oscar Saul
  • Producers: Jerry Bresler
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English, French
  • Subtitles: English, French, Korean
  • Dubbed: French, Japanese
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: September 20, 2005
  • Run Time: 136 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00083FZFY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,661 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Major Dundee (The Extended Version)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Commentary by Peckinpah Historians
  • Incomplete Deleted Scene "Knife Fight"
  • Extended Scene "Major Dundee and Teresa"
  • Extended 20-minute Excerpt from Mike Sigel's Film "Passion & Poetry - The Ballad of Sam Peckinpah"
  • Vintage Stunts Featurette "Riding for a Fall"
  • Silent Extended Outtakes
  • Trailer Artwork Outtakes
  • Promotional Stills and Poster Artwork
  • Exhibitor Promo Reel Artwork
  • 2005 Re-release Trailer

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

This restoration of Sam Peckinpah's 1965 western Major Dundee is nothing short of magnificent, a noble attempt at restoring a famously wrecked masterpiece. When Peckinpah went over budget and over schedule during the Mexico shoot, unshot scenes were canceled and the footage rudely cut by the studio. The director disowned the results. In 2005, surviving footage was patched back in, and a new musical soundtrack commissioned to replace the score Peckinpah hated. This raises some legitimate questions about interpreting a director's intentions, and about messing with film history, but Major Dundee--The Extended Version is such a rousing, mysterious experience, one feels grateful.

Major Dundee (Charlton Heston) is a vainglorious officer busted to the decidedly inglorious job of overseeing prisoners in a fort in New Mexico. An abduction gives him the excuse to mount an expedition into Mexico, chasing the perpetrators and perhaps a shot at greatness. His ragtag posse includes Confederate POWs, notably one Captain Ben Tyreen (Richard Harris), whose intense former friendship with Dundee is tainted with a sense of betrayal on both sides. (Heston and Harris, two actors not known for subtlety, are splendid.) Part Ahab, part Alexander the Great, Dundee leads the expedition away from its purpose and into a near-mythic kind of wandering.

Peckinpah gets everything right--the landscapes, the sneaky humor, the code of men. He also takes time to distinguish the supporting characters, such as Jim Hutton's awkward young officer and Senta Berger's stranded widow. The Peckinpah stock company of amazing character actors is in place, too, including James Coburn, Warren Oates, Ben Johnson, L.Q. Jones, and Slim Pickens. It will never be exactly what Peckinpah envisioned, but now Major Dundee rides suspiciously close to greatness. --Robert Horton

Product Description

Sam Peckinpah's first big-budget film was also the first to be taken away and released in a shortened version. But now, 40 years later, most of the missing footage has been located and reinserted with the entire soundtrack remixed in 5.1 Dolby Digital, and a completely new score composed. The new scenes complete the electrifying depiction of an oppressive Union officer who leads a squad of Rebel prisoners, ex-slaves, and criminals into Mexico to hunt down a band of murdering Apaches which raises the question: who represents a greater threat?

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
100 of 105 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterpiece With More In It June 3, 2005
Format:DVD
Well, I've seen the extended version, and even if they added only 12 minutes, out of a possible forty I guess, it still makes so much more sense now it is totally worth it. Kudos to the editors behind this reconstruction. I didn't have any problem following any of it, and I'm not really bright at complicated plots. All the main outlines of the drama became extremely vivid and clear; the tension between the Confederates and the Union soldiers; the dilemma about the French army; the massacre of the family at the beginning that causes Major Dundee to go all medieval and turn over command at the prison to his skeptical sub-lieutenant. "Maybe there's a reason why you're a jailer, not a soldier, Amos." They keep saying this as though being a jailer were something terrible.

Charlton Heston's descent into a delirium of infection is painful to deal with, very real. Now we see him drawn to the Mexican woman who brings him food; he's so out of it he finds himself having sex with her for the comfort it brings, and then of all times that's when Senta Berger shows up at his door on her own mission of mercy. She sees the naked back of the Mexican woman and you can see the pain in her eyes. Heston's pretty covered up but you get the picture, and he's man enough not to lie about what happened.

Richard Harris looks great and brings a rebel energy to the movie. Warren Oates' death scene is pure poetry, shot through with genius. What a ham he is! And oh, that is ham deluxe, 100 percent pure gold!

Michael Anderson, Jr. is excellent in his role as the young bugler, so much better here than in his other parts. He's sort of playing the Claude Jarman role, or maybe the part Brandon De Wilde played in IN HARMS WAY.
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135 of 148 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Viva Dundee! April 16, 2005
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is another one of those films which I could only faintly recall from childhood. Recently I was fortunate to view a limited run of this firm in its new revised format. Having also seen the older version recently I am able to compare and contrast both versions of this interesting film. The biggest change noted in the revised edition is the music. A new score has been created and this completely changes the mood of the entire movie. The old score was a quirky, sardonic affair with the opening credits leading off with Mitch Miller's sing along gang! A big difference from the symphonic version we have here. If you are one of those people who don't notice movie music that much, try viewing the same film twice with two different scores! The music can make a big difference in how a movie feels to its viewer. We certainly have that here.

In addition to the score, about 13 minutes of footage has been restored. Dundee was one of those films that was butchered on the editing floor, so much so that there has been a lively debate about this ever since it was released back in the 1960s. Apparently almost an hour was cut out, and while 13 minutes does not seem a lot in comparison it can make a difference. Some of the restored scenes include showing the Confederates being captured as they try to escpae in the beginning, as well as showing Heston involved with the Mexican woman before the Austrian lady returns to see how he has recovered from his wound. Small stuff, but it can add up.

The background for this film is Heston (Dundee) putting together a scratch Troop of cavalry to pursue a renegade group of raiding Apaches. His unlikely command includes Confederate POWS, Blacks, and assorted riff-raff.
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51 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Viva Dundee-EXTENDED to a point. May 17, 2005
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Finally, some missing footage from Bloody Sam's flawed masterpiece is coming out. The web news and ads promise 12-15 minutes restored which should help with the major continuity of the film. Having loved this movie for over 30 years and read everything possible on the "butchery" of it, I can offer the following cut footage information;

1. The longest cut was noted in a critical film analysis book I found in the U. of Toronto library. The scene is supposedly 10-12 minutes long and shows the Cavalry detachment at the farm dancing and celebrating with the Rustis (?) family. The Apaches attack, the massacre ensues (and is shown in detail),Trooper Ryan escapes, and the wounded Lieutenant (Brannon ?) is strung up under the slow fire, which is exactly where the movie STARTS in the cut version. The Critical Film Analysis book claimed that the sudio refused to accept that a film could run almost 15 minutes with no major character introduction and then kill off the characters before the main character (Dundee) even appears!

2. Peckinpah's original directors release was to be 152 minutes and this cut at the beginning accounts for approximately 10-12 minutes.If the new Restored release adds about 15 minutes we should get to see about what Sam had intended, better continuity, including the despair/decay of Dundee in the Mexican village, the double back of the Apaches in the hills and the extended knife fight between Potts/Gomez, along with the truth behind Riago (the Apache scout, who is supposedly a traitor). The restored version will apparently not include the Farm massacre scene.

3. The recent book, Bloody Sam, mentions the many cuts and mentions an even longer version.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
EXCELLENT TRANSACTION. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Published 5 days ago by JOHNNY BROOK WARFORD
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb
This 2 disc Blu-Ray movie arrived intact and with no sign of damage to either the discs or the case that the discs came in. Picture, sound and features playback is superb. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Robert Andrew Curry
3.0 out of 5 stars a bit of a mess
I wonder if Sam Peckinpah's later reputation was read back into his relatively early (1964) "Major Dundee. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Stanley Crowe
3.0 out of 5 stars Major Dundee Instant Video
Just a word to those who might be considering buying the "extended cut" version on instant video. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Writing Historian
4.0 out of 5 stars A GREAT WATCH !!!
Charlton Heston, Richard Harris, James Coburn ! What a great movie and a real joy to watch! It is a most welcomed addition to ANY movie collection!!!
Published 5 months ago by Michael A. Barile
4.0 out of 5 stars Angry Frenemies Fighting Uncommon Enemies
An excellent hard working cast for this semi-bizarre Western Indian War meets Civil War meets European War in Mexico story. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Alan K. Sumrall
4.0 out of 5 stars major western classic
in a world hard to find good western movies, this is a good one!'' great characters, action, plot. enjoyed it immensely. wish there were more of this gendre.
Published 6 months ago by barbara Turner
5.0 out of 5 stars major dundee
this movie is a nice addition to our cowboys one of the best maded thank you for the early time
Published 7 months ago by hiroko
5.0 out of 5 stars I love this film
because it involves you in what is an important part of non-history that one needs to think about. That's right - NON-HISTORY it is just a file about life in the Western area of... Read more
Published 9 months ago by E. McConnell
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Heston's best movies.
Great movie with many stars. One of Heston's best movies. Sam Peckinpah's movie is one of his best action packed westerns.
Published 10 months ago by James T.
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