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64 of 71 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars South Brooklyn meets The South
Subtly employing the city mouse/country mouse theme, MY COUSIN VINNY is a light-hearted courtroom comedy. While it occasionally stoops to some stereotyping, the movie doesn't do so mean-spiritedly. In any event, both sides get equal skewering.
Vinny Gambini, brilliantly portrayed by Joe Pesci, is a Brooklyn boy who has finally passed the Bar (after repeated failures)...
Published on June 23, 2004 by Rocco Dormarunno

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Don't care for the excessive use of offensive vulgar language...otherwise would have given it 5 stars
Published 21 days ago by Frank P. Gudicello, M.D.


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64 of 71 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars South Brooklyn meets The South, June 23, 2004
This review is from: My Cousin Vinny (DVD)
Subtly employing the city mouse/country mouse theme, MY COUSIN VINNY is a light-hearted courtroom comedy. While it occasionally stoops to some stereotyping, the movie doesn't do so mean-spiritedly. In any event, both sides get equal skewering.
Vinny Gambini, brilliantly portrayed by Joe Pesci, is a Brooklyn boy who has finally passed the Bar (after repeated failures) and now finds himself defending his nephew and his nephew's friend against murder charges in the Bible Belt. Along with his too beautiful fiancee, played by Academy Award Winner Marissa Tomei, Pesci investigates the southern style of life, as he fathoms southern courtroom procedures and tries to get some sleep. The resulting clash of cultures is sometimes predictable, but honestly, is very inventive for the most part.
The comedy of the court room scenes is heightened by the late Fred Gwynne who plays the presiding judge. His by-the-book habits and short-fused temper are a perfect foil to Vinny's laconic style. It is their interaction that feeds most of the cultural clashing. But there is also a clash of the sexes that underlies the film, as Vinny stubbornly refuses the help of his fiancee. This confrontation is also highlighted in the courtroom when the DA refuses to believe that she could possibly be considered an expert in automechanics, even though her brothers, her father, her uncles, and just about everyone else in her family are expert mechanics. (The DA becomes convinced in a wonderful cross-interview scene.)
MY COUSIN VINNY was both critically well-received and a huge box-office success. There's a reason for that: it is a well-written, well-directed and perfectly acted comedy that stands up well even after repeated viewings. See it for yourself and you'll understand why, too.
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50 of 57 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Could have been 5 - had they added anything, August 2, 2009
I believe this to be one of those 90s comedies we all love, so the BD transfer was a nice addition to see come over. Playing it in the store today reminded everyone how fun the film was, but the obvious preservation work made for a nice sell on how these older films should be done.

The colors and clarity were actually cleaned up well, with the artifact being random to where there was no real detraction. The credit sequences looked solid, which for some of these 90s block letter credits the BD transfers can leave in horrible grain. With how they did Tomei's makeup in this, there could have been plenty of chances for a dull saturation look, but in actuality it turned out looking great.

The sound is what sold me though. They mixed and re-amplified it into a 5.1 DTS that rocked the channels. The train scenes were excellent and that owl made customers do a double take. The supplements suck though. They included a variety of trailers from theater and TV, but in that it does show how the original stock looked compared to this upgrade. The commentary was fine, but I was hoping for some visual treats. Instead, the film will have to stand alone for buying the Blu. The menu shows a cleaned up reel also and the navigation was simple. Enjoy.
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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magistrate's Gavel Hits Hard On Lawyer's Forehead!, September 12, 2005
By 
This review is from: My Cousin Vinny [VHS] (VHS Tape)
First of all: "My Cousin Vinny" (1992), is one of the funniest film I've ever seen! After the first ten minutes you can't stop laughing. You'll be able only to graduate from roaring outbursts to moderate laugh.

Jonathan Lynn has many skills in the cinematographic world: he is actor, director and playwright. As director this is, arguably, his best work. When making this film, it seems he was touched by a magic wand for comedic tempos. It is a pity he hasn't reached the same level with his other films, still there are some quite good as "Nuns on the Run" (1990) and "The Distinguished Gentleman" (1992).

This is the story of two New York youngsters wrongly accused of murder in Alabama. They are broken and endangered but Billy resorts to his Cousin Vinny, who's supposedly an experienced attorney.

Well... he isn't experienced, but he is faithful to family obligation and show up with his fiancée to help his relative.
The Court is commanded by Judge Chamberlain Haller inflexible and punctilious.
The rest of the movie shows the confrontation between Judge & Attorney, giving place to a series of hilarious scenes.

Joe Pesci, Marisa Tomei and Fred Gwynne flesh the three main characters producing outstanding alchemy for audience's delight.
Pesci is a purebred comedian and his characterization of a New Yorker confused by Southern etiquette is just a riot.
Beautiful Marisa Tomei earned an Oscar with her joyful play-acting.

Last but not least Fred Gwynne is a Judge full of irony and subtleties.

This movie is an excellent pastime, I wholeheartedly recommend it.

Reviewed by Max Yofre.
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Feel Good Comedy About "City Slickers" Colliding With "Southern Bumpkins" In Courtroom "Drama", June 12, 2008
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This review is from: My Cousin Vinny (DVD)
I cautiously first went to see "My Cousin Vinny" when Marisa Tomei won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, because--unlike many people--I don't like Joe Pesci. I still don't like Joe Pesci, BUT the role of Vincent LaGuardia Gambini in "My Cousin Vinny" is perfect for him, and his performance is stellar. For me Joe Pesci is Vincent Gambini and Vincent Gambini is Joe Pesci. And, it was my opinion when I first saw "My Cousin Vinny," as it is now after watching the DVD I just got, that Marisa Tomei more than deserved the Oscar. It is my opinion, moreover, that many times award winning performances are discredited by viewers because the actor is performing so well that it appears they are not acting at all. (Please note that I count myself among those who see the Oscars as politically driven; so, when I agree with them--which is seldom--I am truly standing up to be counted).

The product description does a fair job of describing the story outline; although it hardly makes "My Cousin Vinny" sound nearly as funny as it is. But the movie is about more than two kids from the city mistakenly arrested for murder in (the implicitly implied "redneck") Alabama. The film is a light-hearted study of culture clashes, where all characters have stereotypical traits and stereotype the other characters themselves. The movie is also about assumptions--along with the inherent danger of such--and how the "meaning" of these assumptions vary with regards to experience and socialization. "My Cousin Vinny" also examines gender roles--and it is here that Tomei shines--and education/science versus experience and common knowledge. But, most importantly, "My Cousin Vinny" demonstrates the importance of "doing the right thing," regardless of the consequences (and in some cases the legality of the action). Pesci's character finally "gets it," and is able to find his way; but only through the assistance of Tomei's character and the trust of Billy Gambini (inconsistently performed by Ralph Macchio).

As for the other reviewer's triad about the language in this DVD version of the movie, as compared to the bleeped television version, I have these comments: 1) the movie is rated "R," which should have informed you about the probability of profanity; 2) while it may seem like there is a lot of profanity in the movie, it is completely applicable to the way these characters would actually speak--and I suspect that there is actually less profanity than it sounds like; 3) when "My Cousin Vinny" was made (1992), most movies were moving towards increased use of profanity--especially "R" rated movies; and 4) is overt profanity that much worse than suggested or ribald "comedy?" Moreover, just how does the sudden inclusion of (generally appropriately used) profanity into any dialog--films or otherwise--change the humor or make it no longer funny? In fact, I personally hear just as much, if not more, profanity used by children, teenagers, adults, and seniors at the store than in the movie; which I believe is gross misuse of profanity, but is the way of life today. For me, and I am sure many others, a great funny movie, is a great funny movie in spite of the language. Remember, there was a day when movies couldn't even rely on language to be funny.

Now for the mystery I am having trouble understanding: Why is this version of the DVD/VHS not being lumped together with the other versions with regards to reviews? To date (12 June 2008), there is only one review listed for this version, while there are 129 reviews for the other version currently available. This is so uncharacteristic of Amazon! And, in near ultimate irony, it appears that there is no difference between this version and the other "lower priced" (I got mine when it was sale) version, other than the fact that this version has a gold cardboard slipcase (the box inside is exactly like the other one) and the listing has the wrong actors!

Update--1 July 2008: If this review was not helpful to you, I would appreciate learning the reason(s) so I can improve my reviews. My goal is to provide help to potential buyers, not get into any arguments. So, if you only disagree with my opinion, could you please say so in the comments and not indicate that the review was not helpful. Thanks.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Two "yewts," a green Buick... and murder, November 6, 2001
By 
This review is from: My Cousin Vinny (DVD)
Probably one of the funniest movies I've seen in at least the past twenty years is "My Cousin Vinny," starring Joe Pesci, Marisa Tomei, Fred Gwynne, Ralph Macchio, and Mitchell Whitfield.
"My Cousin Vinny" tells the story of how a coupla easy-goin' college kids on their way from "Big Apple," where they live, to California, where they go to school, run afoul of the law in Alabama. Somehow, Bill Gambini and Stan Rothenstein manage to get themselves charged with a murder they didn't commit. Two New York City kids, alone and broke in a small-town jail, charged with murder... And no lawyer in sight. What to do? Call home, of course! The solution to their problem of not having a lawyer? Naturally - enlist the help of the lawyer in the family,!

Enter Bill's cousin, Vinny Gambini (played by Joe Pesci), A sawed-off, wise-crackin,' street-wise, runt of a man with one of doze "tick Brawnx accents" and an ego that far exceeds his diminutive stature. His mission: to defend the two "yewts" (youths) against charges of murder. Accompanying Vinny is his beautiful fiancee, Mona Lisa (Lisa) Vito (Marisa Tomei), an unemployed beautician with an encyclopedic knowledge of automobiles and auto mechanics.
It looks like the day is saved for Stan and Bill. Only... they have a BI-I-G problem on their hands: Vinny's only been a lawyer for six weeks. That's after trying - and failing - to pass his bar exams for <i>six years!!</i> And, he's never... <i>ever...</i> tried a case in a real live courtroom.
I won't give away any more of the plot. You'll just have to watch "My Cousin Vinny" to see how Vinny Gambini stumbles and fumbles and bumbles his way through the most important case of his new-found legal career, all the while contending with characters like the austere Judge Chamberlain Haller, a man with a grim countenance and a sense of humor to match; Jim Trotter III, the local District Attorney, a smooth-talking, highly experienced, and very competent prosecutor; Public Defender John Gibbons, a second-rate lawyer who can barely spit words out of his mouth, much less complete sentences; and a host of the town's local citizens - some of them witnesses, others just a pain in the neck, but all of them busily engaged in a constant clash of cultures with Vinny, Lisa, Bill, and Stan.
Excellent performances abound in "My Cousin Vinny." Joe Pesci attacks his role as Vinny with gusto, imbuing his character with tons of bluster and baloney. Marisa Tomei comes darn close to stealing the entire show with her performance as Mona Lisa Vito. In fact, she's so good that she won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for this role. In one of his last roles before his death in 1993, Fred Gwynne is excellent as the no-nonsense Judge Chamberlain Haller. A stickler for the rules of proper courtroom etiquette, this formidably featured magistrate finds it his duty to get the hapless Vinny Gambini to shape up... or pay the consequences.
Screen Writer Dale Launer never misses an opportunity to poke fun at many of our American foibles. Of course, the legal profession takes the brunt of Launer's sharp-witted pen. Ambulance chasing, incompetence, and an overly legalistic approach to the law are but a few of the legal profession's faults lampooned in this film. "My Cousin Vinny" brilliantly parodies our cultural differences as well. It draws sharp - and hilarious - contrast between the bucolic and the urban; and the provincial and the urbane. The movie also does an excellent job of pointing out, in a humorous way, our tendency to stereotype people and cultures not our own.
All this makes for a side-splitting two hours of cinematic entertainment!
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My Cousin Vinny (1992), July 15, 2004
This review is from: My Cousin Vinny [VHS] (VHS Tape)
In 1992, My Cousin Vinny was the one movie that made everybody laugh until their sides split. I've been watching the film ever since it was released and all I did was laugh my rear-end off. Twelve years have gone by since the film was released and I'm still laughing today. Any actor or actress can get a rise out of you if they knew the right way to do it, but nobody can get a rise of you the way Joe Pesci does in this film; nobody can do it they way Marisa Tomei does in this film.
When two college buddies by the names of Bill (played by Ralph Macchio) and Stan (Mitchell Whitford) are driving down the roads of Beecham County, Alabama, they are suddenly arrested for the murder of a grocery store clerk, but what the police of Alabama don't know is that Bill and Stan are completely innocent. Unable to afford a public attorney, Bill turns to his cousin, Vincent Gambini (played by Joe Pesci), an ex-auto-mechanic turned lawyer from Brooklyn, New York, who just past his bar exam after failing it the first five times and knows absolutely nothing about law. By his side is his beautiful fiancee, Lisa Vito (played by Marisa Tomei, in her Oscar-winning role), who is an out-of-work hairdresser that knows every damn thing there is to know about cars. The court is led by Judge Chamberlain Haller (played by the late Fred Gwyne), who has absolutely no patience for any kind of misbehavior in his courtroom. Seems as though Vinny has now finally realized his no longer in New York and is now in a state where no one gets away with any kind of behavior or crime and has finally met his match. Can Vinny pull his cousin out of this mess without screwing up the case? Watch My Cousin Vinny as he desperately tries to save his little cousin while he gives you non-stop laughter along the way.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely Funny and Quotable Comedy, January 3, 2007
By 
This review is from: My Cousin Vinny (DVD)
"My Cousin Vinny" is an underrated gem. Or actually, I suppose (here, at least) it's not so underrated, as there are more than 100 people in agreement with me. If you're thinking about getting it, but not sure -- do! Fred Gwynne is terrific in his last film role. Marisa Tomei (Oscar debate notwithstanding) is also "dead-on balls accurate" as Mona Lisa, a tough-talking, out-of-work hairdresser from Brooklyn. And of course, Joe Pesci is absolutely perfect as Vinny. Just coming out of "Goodfellas" a couple of years before, he's a comedy revelation. Sure, he was funny in "Home Alone", but nothing like as funny as he is here.

The rest of the cast deliver very strong character performances as well. From the state's attorney played by Lane Smith to the county sheriff played by Bruce McGill. Ralph Macchio and Mitchell Whitfield are also great as the two defendants. And don't miss Austin Pendleton's hilarious turn as a public defender with stage fright. Classic!

I used to know the dialogue pretty much backwards and forwards, and even now, 15 years later, I still watch the movie every so often and find myself quoting lines.

Note: The DVD has almost no special features at all. Disappointing. Maybe we can look forward to a special edition at some point in the future. Still, when you're looking for a pick-me-up, you can't go wrong with "My Cousin Vinny", so I recommend getting the DVD anyway -- special features or not.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the funniest movies you'll ever see..., April 20, 2005
This review is from: My Cousin Vinny (DVD)
Joe Pesci and Marisa Tomei steal the show in My Cousin Vinny, the hit 1992 comedy about a clash of cultures. When two college buddies from New York, Billy Gambini (Ralph Macchio) and Stan Rothenstein (Mitchell Whitfield) are mistakenly arrested for murder in Alabama, they are in desperate need of a high-profile defense attorney. But lawyers can be costly, so the two friends enlist the help of Billy's cousin, Vincent Gambini (Joe Pesci) - a former auto mechanic from Brooklyn who has never practiced in a court and needed seven attempts to pass the bar exam.

With the Alabama prosecutors calling for the death penalty, Vinny arrives in the heart of the Deep South with his Brooklyn hairdresser/auto mechanic girlfriend Lisa (Marisa Tomei). While roaming the town, the two learn about "mud in the tires," grits, and the 5am sirens that announce it's time to get up. One of the more hilarious scenes in the film occurs when Vincent is ushered to Stan and Billy's jail cell. With his cousin asleep, Vinny approaches Stan who believes that Vinny is a prisoner with intentions other than those of being good legal counsel. That one scene alone is worth the watching the whole film.

As the trial approaches, Vinny's courtroom antics dominate the movie as he has multiple run-ins with the by-the-book Judge Chamberlain Haller (Fred Gwynne) and engages in innumerable procedural snafus. The interplay between Pesci and Gwynne is worthy of an Academy Award. However, the Oscar in this one went to Marisa Tomei for her brilliant portrayal of Mona Lisa Vito. The screen relationship between Pesci and Tomei is magical, creating one of those rare comedy films with a decent plot, no outlandishly ridiculous scenes, and a hilarious atmosphere that covers the duration of the film...

The DVD Report
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Funniest Movie I Have Ever Seen, April 22, 2000
This review is from: My Cousin Vinny [VHS] (VHS Tape)
Joe Pesci wonderfully plays fresh out-of-Law School lawyer Vincent Gambini. He is asked to come to Alabama, and defend his cousin and a friend accused of murder. He is wonderfully humorous while trying to prove their innocence. He faces obstacles from Fred Gwynne's Judge Chamberlain Haller, which was wonderfully acted. As well as competition from Lane Smith's Prosecuting Attorney Jim Trotter III, also wonderfully acted. Marisa Tomei is excellent as Vinny's fiance, Mona Lisa Vito. That part won Tomei a Best Supporting Actress Award. This is a great film, thanks to great casting and a great storyline. I highly recommend this film to anyone who wants to laugh nonstop for two hours.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the funniest films ever., June 21, 2006
By 
This review is from: My Cousin Vinny (DVD)
Two friends, Stan and Billy, take a road trip down south but run into trouble when they are mistakenly arrested for murder in Alabama. The hapless youngsters have no money to hire an attorney but Billy's cousin Vinny (Joe Pesci) is a lawyer so they call on him to help. What they don't realise is that Vinny took 6 attempts to pass his legal exams and, what's more, has no courtroom experience to speak of. What follows is none stop humour and 'laugh aloud' moments as the brash New Yorker sweeps into the hick town accompanied by his strident girlfriend, Mona Lisa Vito (Marisa Tomei).

Vinny's lack of court etiquette, such as dressing in leathers and arriving late, quickly upsets the traditionalist judge, played by a brilliantly dry Fred Gwynne. The judge decides to have Vinny investigated in order to prove he is not fit to take the case whilst Vinny races against time to complete the case before the judge finds any information against him.

Marisa Tomei is the real scene-stealer with her brilliant portrayal of Mona Lisa, her courtroom scenes are pure genius, and she deservedly won an Oscar for the part. The film is no high budget work of art and the DVD has little in the way of extras but the sheer quality of acting and the wonderfully funny script more than compensate.
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