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Patty Hearst

4 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

A dramatization of the newspaper heiress' abduction and subsequent brainwashing by the Symbionese Liberation Army.

This product is manufactured on demand using DVD-R recordable media. Amazon.com's standard return policy will apply.


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Natasha Richardson, William Forsythe, Ving Rhames, Dana Delany, Frances Fisher
  • Directors: Paul Schrader
  • Writers: Nicholas Kazan
  • Producers: Marvin Worth
  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: MGM
  • DVD Release Date: April 4, 2011
  • Run Time: 103 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004ULEEZC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #102,505 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on July 23, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
"Patty Hearst"'s title is about as self-explanatory as they come. Natasha Richardson (Vanessa Redgrave's elder daughter) plays the eponymous, uhhh, heroine, kidnapped by the Symbionese Liberation Army (don't even ask...) and eventually brought round to the point of joining them on a bank robbery.
The second half of the film, in which Patty and the gang are on the run from the cops, is exciting enough in its way. Schrader's trademark willingness to explore what many people would regard as total amorality enables him to make us care for this raggle-taggle bunch of outlaws, as one after another they're arrested, gunned down or burned. Richardson herself is very good as Patty, having to run the gamut from spoiled heiress via terrified captive to bitterly experienced convict.
It's the first half, though, that makes the second half work. Patty's captivity is rendered in a dark, surreal, almost theatrical way; we are locked in a room with her for much of the first half an hour, experiencing her captors only as black silhouettes against white light. The stylisation that worked so well on Schrader's "Mishima" is here employed to other ends, and suprisingly successfully. If the earlier portions of "Patty Hearst" weren't so good, the later part wouldn't carry the charge that it has; Patty's wish to join the SLA only makes sense in terms of the extreme experience she's been through.
The real Patty Hearst went on to act in a John Waters movie, which must make Schrader wince whenever he thinks of it.
Read more ›
Comment 12 of 15 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: VHS Tape
This is the film that made me a fan of both Natasha Richardson, and Paul Schrader. I love the Storys progression, and how the views of Patty's kidnappers change from frighting creatures to just ordinary people - wishing they could be extraordinary and change the world - and in this case go about it in a most outlandish way.

It is not only taking part in viewing Patty's transformation while in captivity, but viewing the mores of this subculture/cult, and day to day living is fascinating.

Now that Ms. Richardson has just died at such a young age, it saddens me that the majority of Americans will never get to see this amazing performance because someone with the rights somewhere doesn't want to release it for us on DVD. Some online movie rental services allow you to watch the film streamed to your computer, but it is the pan and scan "video" version we get to see, not the quality we are used to viewing today. But it is worth adding to you movie collection even if it is just the VHS copy.
2 Comments 7 of 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: VHS Tape
This movie is hard to take at times. The first part of the movie puts you right inside Patty's head which isn't a nice place to be. The movie asks some really hard qestions like what would I have done if I was Patty? How far is to far to take your beliefs?

Over all the movie is a good one. But if you are looking for some cheap made for TV movie of the week skip this one. If you are looking for a thought provoking, well acted movie this is the one for you.
Comment 7 of 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: VHS Tape
Paul Schrader's superb direction and Natasha Richardson's hard hitting performance as Patty should have been a shoe-in to win on Oscar night. Film captures in great detail the terror felt by Hearst, tortured by kidnappers and forced to participate in bank robberies. Ending also is effective in the way it redicules the state's case at her trial (ex. The DA asks if she ever sent her parents any birthday cards) but I won't give the rest away. Like most movies, the lack of backing from a major studio probably reduced critic's reviews by a few stars. Natasha will be missed, passing away at a ripe age when an Oscar-winning part might have come her way.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
This film shows the story from the side of the only person that can tell the story, Patty Hearst.

I was on set of this film to be an extra (the bank robbery) but didn't make the cut.

The film is very acturate in facts and the performances are great. Ms. Richardson gives a great performance as Patty and from what I recall from the filming, a nice woman and beautiful.

What I love about this film is that at the Cannes Film Festable, Patty Hearst herself met John Waters and became friends. Since then she now has had rolls in all of his films. Good for Patty. The SLA may have taken years of her life, but in the end Patty has the last laugh. Go on Patty!

UPDATE: I just got this on DVD. The quality is great. I just got one of them thar fancy shamancy TV and even it this DVD isn't Blu Ray ... it look good!
Comment 9 of 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This film is interesting and visually striking. The cinematography helps to give a feeling of what it's like to be a prisoner and, later, a group of people in hiding but dedicated to a cause. The story as a whole, and Natasha Richardson's performance, gives a convincing picture of a paradoxical situation: how one may deliberately adopt a role simply in self-defence--for survival--and then how one may get lost in the role, to the point of identifying with people whom one had previously feared. The uncertain note at the end--where all seems confusion; where it seems difficult for Patti, not only to know what she feels, but even what she IS--was the right note on which to end this particular drama. (If one wants to learn more, one can read a book; but it won't do what the film does, though it may give more useful general info)
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