The Rocking Horse Winner
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
- New digital transfer
- Michael Almeryda's (HAMLET, NADJA) 20 min. short film staring Eric Stoltz based on 'Rocking Horse Winner'
- Audio track of actor John Shea reading the story 'Rocking Horse Winner' (20 min.)
- 3 audio excerpts from a chamber opera based on 'Rocking Horse Winner' (15 min.)
- 24 page booklet including the entire text of 'Rocking' story and libretto excerpts from the chamber opera
Top Customer Reviews
This DVD has some of the most unique extras I've ever seen. Basically, Home Vision Entertainment has packaged it as a collection of different interpretations of Lawrence's story, and the entries are very interesting. Best of all are the Almereyda short film and a full copy of the original story in place of liner notes. HVM have teamed up with Criterion in the past, and they do not disappoint here. The transfer is fine.
The only thing that keeps me from giving this a full 5-star rating is that, unlike Criterion, HVM hasn't provided any substantial info on the feature film. This is an oversight in my opinion because this 1949 movie became a particularly strong influence on the next generation of British filmmakers who openly embraced fantasy (like Lindsay Anderson's "If..."). American audiences might not make that connection.
The "Rocking Horse Winner" is not particularly well-known, and it definitely deserves a larger audience. The film is highly enjoyable and unpredictable, with some unexpected eerie and sinister elements. The acting is generally good and somewhat larger than life, although Valerie Hobson portrays the mother in perhaps too unsympathetic a light. A highlight of the film is the demonic rocking horse that the boy receives for Christmas; the scenes with the boy riding it into a frenzy are frighteningly unforgettable, and perhaps more than a bit oedipal in nature. The DVD transfer is quite good, although no subtitles have been recorded - a shame considering the sometimes thick accents of some of the actors. Overall, the "Rocking Horse Winner" is a champion - an unusual, small British film that should be much better known.
Extras: Three different versions of "Rocking Horse Winner" are included.Read more ›
Paul gets a hobby horse for a Christmas present and with some encouragement from the family handyman/gardener, rides it with force and passion. Bassett, the handyman, also shows Paul his strong interest in horse racing. And so it happens that whenever Paul rides the hobby horse, something eerie happens; he "knows" the name of the winner at the next race.
Paul's mother is so materialistic that she drives the family almost to the point of bankruptcy. The stakes are raised with expert timing here; the more she spends, the more somebody has to win at the races. But Paul's obsession with the riding the hobby horse has a dangerous side effect....
In addition to the full length feature film, the DVD also includes a superb 1997 20 minute short film directed by Michael Almereyda (Nadja, Hamlet starring Ethan Hawke) based on the same story. Shot in Pixelvision, it is just as effective as the 1949 film with a radically different style and feeling. Yet the same sense of dread and creepiness is present.
The DVD also includes, in the booklet, the entire short story by D.H. Lawrence, and a reading of the story (audio only) by actor John Shea--AND excerpts from a chamber opera based on the story as well.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Just a little background about the actors in this entertaining film. The boy was played by John Howard Davies. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Rock Hound
Damn Awesome Movie! A dark well written English movie about a kid who starts gambling to help his "mummy" but ends up getting in touch with dark cosmic forces that allow... Read morePublished 16 months ago by ReadySetGo
The depiction of Paul and his parents in the movie could have been shown more creatively. The events in the movie are mostly consistent with the details embedded in the text... Read morePublished on September 7, 2013 by Rai
The DVD goes along nicely with the short story. The actors (especially the boy) are very convincing. I recommend this.Published on June 20, 2013 by Kathy D
I was glad to get this as it gave the class a great opportunity to discuss the things that were different in the movie portrayal versus the original text. Read morePublished on June 4, 2013 by Gabby
Yes, this is the classical psychological thriller. The short story is great and this film adaptation is also very good. Read morePublished on May 24, 2013 by Philip Suthons
The D.H.Lawrence short story on which this film is based, while unusual and arresting, would seem an unlikely basis for a feature length film. Read morePublished on February 15, 2012 by WSH
The Rocking Horse Winner(1950)is a flat this-out masterpiece!! Based on a short story by D.H. Lawrence, this dvd is an exceptional experience all in itself. Read morePublished on May 11, 2011 by Smrz