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Pirates of Silicon Valley (2005)

Anthony Michael Hall , Noah Wyle , Martyn Burke  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (277 customer reviews)

List Price: $19.98
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Product Details

  • Actors: Anthony Michael Hall, Noah Wyle, Joey Slotnick
  • Directors: Martyn Burke
  • Writers: Martyn Burke
  • Producers: Nick Lombardo
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Turner Home Ent
  • DVD Release Date: August 30, 2005
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (277 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0009NSCS0
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,061 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Pirates of Silicon Valley" on IMDb

Special Features

Introduction by Noah Wyle

Editorial Reviews

The revolution came when we weren't looking. It happened in a garage. In a dorm room. In countless hours of effort, imagining and intrigue. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates were changing the way the world works, lives and communicates. The event-packed saga of the quirky visionaries who jump-started the future unfolds with exhilarating, cutting-edge style in Pirates of Silicon Valley. Noah Wyle (ER) portrays Jobs and Anthony Michael Hall (The Dead Zone) portrays Gates in this chronicle of the fierce and often humorous battle to rule the fledgling personal computer empire. "The story is almost Shakespearean... it's a tale of lust, greed, ambition, love and hate," writer/director Martyn Burke reflects. And it's a success story unlike any other.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
102 of 104 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Insight into a revolution. November 21, 1999
Format:VHS Tape
I watched the movie as it aired on tv, and enjoyed it so much I rented it a number of times when it released. Taking only 90% to be near historical accuracy, it still has captivated me enough to make me pre-order the re-publication of the book "Fire in the Valley" by Paul Freiberger and Michael Swaine, on which the movie is based, just to find out what the movie left out. This movie gives such an insight into a true revolution, taking the computers out of the hands of corporate types, and giving them over to the masses. Noah Wyle is Steve Jobs in this movie. His acting brings to life one of the most influential people of the time. Anthony Michael Hall does a superb job of showing Bill Gates as the capitalistic businessman in its trueist form. The only reason I don't give it a 5 star rating is that I feel they spend a little too much time on Steve Jobs' personal drug trip. This was time that could have been better spent explaining what has happened since 1997, when Jobs came back to Apple. Or, they could have led up to the Gates vs. United States trial. All in all a great movie. Rent it, Buy it, show it to your kids. This is current history, and it is relevant to today.
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109 of 114 people found the following review helpful
Format:VHS Tape|Verified Purchase
In the first few minutes of the film, we see Steve Jobs pacing the floor on a Boston stage (year 1997--shortly after his return to Apple), and above him is the gigantic image of Bill Gates smiling down (smirking?) at him, while we hear the voice of Steve Wozniac (the Woz) in the background say, "How did we get from there to here?" And there, dear readers, lies the tale of the century.
Kudos for the director, the casting director, and the fine performances from Hall and Wyle. In this film, we see the rise of the personal computer from two of most important players of the era, and along the way, we are shown how deeply power and wealth corrupts. Those of us that lived through this period are well acquainted with the first personal computers. Indeed, many of us have heard enough rumors concerning Steve Jobs' late night tantrums as he walked the halls of his empire, to know that this film depicted both him and Steve Wozniac fairly honestly. As far as the depiction of Bill Gates, there are those that agree and those that disagree. Obviously, artistic license was used on both sides. Steve Wozniac mentioned that he was surprised how accurately the movie portrayed the personalities, but indicated they got many of the dates screwed up (check his web site, he has many interesting comments concerning the movie).
As the title aptly suggests, both Steve and Bill gained their initial fame not just from their own creative genius (although both are considered geniuses), but as much from "borrowing" -- Jobs from Xerox PARC, and Gates from Apple Computer.
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41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The great american success story, timing is everything! February 27, 2003
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
This takes you from beginning to present day.
Shows Paul Allen (who now OWNS the Seahawks and Trailblazers pro teams) Bill Gates, Steve Jobs etc. etc. Dropping out of college to pursue a slow burning fire that would become the personal computer/windows software that we know today.
What is interesting is that it shows who talks and who works. Gates lies a lot, pretty much living by the saying "telling people what they want to hear" while Paul Allen grinds away at making code.
On the other end it's the same somewhat, rogue cannon Steve Jobs handling the business part while we get a sense that Steve Wozniak is a true tech who goes above and beyond Jobs' rantings to produce the final product.
What is so funny is the irony of this movie:
Loan Officer: "Sorry Mr. Jobs, but we don't think the ordinary person will have any use for a computer".
HP: "You think people are interested in something called a mouse?".
Xerox: "We build it and then they can come right in here and steal it from us? It's just not fair, this operating system is a result of our hard work!".
Jobs to Gates: "You're STEALING FROM US!!!"
Assistant to Gates: "Do you realize Apple has a pirate flag over their front door, and they just gave us 3 prototypes of their operating system?"
Jobs: "I don't want people to look at it like a monitor and mouse, I think of this as art, a vision, people need to think outside the box".
Jobs: "You stole it from ussss!" Gates: "No it's not stealing, you see, it's like we both have this neighbor, and he leaves his door open all the time. You go over there to get his TV, only I've gotten their first..and now you're calling me the thief?!".
Just some of the excerpts that make this movie a classic and show you everything that went down when a bunch of college dropouts set out and changed the world in which we live today.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Only Made-For-TV movie I have ever enjoyed. August 19, 2004
Format:VHS Tape
Going in I expected little of this movie, as I am very skeptical about the low budget made-for-TV style of film making. Most "based on a true story" movies are trite and nothing more than exploitation. Ripped from the headlines movies using someone's suffering or crime as a ratings getter. Pure crap!

I must say however, that Pirates Of Silicon Valley is brilliant. Every aspect of the movie appeals to me. It's visual style, it's pacing, it's characters, it's humor, and most engrossing, it's history. I knew much of the parallels between Bill Gates and Steve Jobs already and was pleasantly surprised to see much of the facts faithfully reproduced. The parts that were inaccurate were obviously for entertainment value, but they did fit the theme of the story and are forgivable (it is a movie after all).

The film makers were very original for two reasons. First, for focusing on the more interesting moments of computer history. Second for the brutally honest look at the two pivotal character's lives and personalities, they aren't depicted nicely. The movie flows from moment to moment, historical event to historical event, over the course of two decades, following the exploits of the two most influential men of the computer industry. We see thier origins, their beginning ventures in the industry, thier major deals, thier double-crosses and shady conquests, thier flaws, thier bad judgement, and ultimatley thier confrontation.

My favorite moments come from the bonehead mistakes that are made by the corporate types. IBM allowing Microsoft to retain ownership of DOS, Xerox not developing its own inventions (the mouse and the GUI), HP not even wanting ownership of the apple, and the biggest mistake of them all, Steve Jobs trusting Bill Gates.

I absolutely love this movie, and the only negative thing about it is that it doesn't exist in DVD format. I have the VHS but I would pay whatever price TNT asked for a DVD full of extras.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Apple or microsolt
Do you really know the 'way' it was?// I remember for my sons were so 'into' computers than they bought one of the first(which they STILL have and USE...An APPLE,of course.. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Jerre Issod
4.0 out of 5 stars A decent movie
For those of us who love the Apple/Microsoft battles, and are old enough to remember the original Mac and IBM PC computers, this is great. Read more
Published 14 days ago by Murph
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Movie
Watched this when I was a teenyboper, enjoyed it and wanted it in my collection. Now it is, and I am happy.
Published 29 days ago by James
3.0 out of 5 stars Pirates of Silicon Valley
Dwelled a little too much on partying rather than the significant facts. Such how apple developed the first object oriented operating system to be copied by Microsoft.
Published 1 month ago by Phil Hauger
4.0 out of 5 stars The Story of How Two Misfit Drop-Outs Became the Gods of the Personal...
Steve Jobs was a college radical, and Bill Gates was a Harvard bum who missed class to play poker. But each had certain friends. Read more
Published 1 month ago by classicalsteve
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid
Great insight into Steve Jobs and how he came to be. The actors really provide an image to associate with all of the stories and legends that went with Steve. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Aaron Cleek
5.0 out of 5 stars Pirates of Silicon Valley
Nice movie based on the lives of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. The struggle to get noticed, funded and to work together. Made for TV and very well delivered. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Santiago Jimenez
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie
Really good film, sheds light on many of the events leading up to computing as we know it today. I suspect you'll learn something no matter if you prefer Windows or Mac.
Published 2 months ago by K. Trochta
3.0 out of 5 stars semi-biographical
It gives you a feel for the amazing beginnings of apple computers but I am not sure how much was fiction vs fact.
Published 2 months ago by fred6301
3.0 out of 5 stars GOOD MOVIE
Having seen this movie many years ago, I was already acquainted with the story. The audio however was inconsistently loud at times and low at others during the first 1/4 of the... Read more
Published 2 months ago by leslie boyd
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