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Saturday Night Live: 25 Years Of Laughs [VHS] (1975)

Dan Aykroyd , Alec Baldwin , Beth McCarthy-Miller  |  NR |  VHS Tape
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Dan Aykroyd, Alec Baldwin, Candice Bergen, David Bowie, Garth Brooks
  • Directors: Beth McCarthy-Miller
  • Format: Box set, NTSC
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Number of tapes: 2
  • Studio: NBC Home Video
  • VHS Release Date: November 9, 1999
  • Run Time: 160 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000214GE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #434,302 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

Like many of the clips that make up the bulk of its content, the Saturday Night Live 25th Anniversary special suffers from that malady specific to almost every SNL sketch: it starts out brilliantly, loses steam about halfway through, then slowly but gamely limps to the finish line with occasional spurts of humor. This special (which actually marks the show's 24th anniversary, but never you mind about those small details!) gathered almost all of the Saturday Night Live alumni--well, the funny ones, anyway--for a celebration of the show's entrenchment in the cultural landscape. It's basically an occasion to show a lot of clips, ranging in time from the Coneheads to Mary Katherine Gallagher, put together in a sprightly, rapid-pace manner and interspersed with occasional live audience-interaction bits. An hysterically funny Bill Murray kicks things off as a lounge singer at an Indian reservation casino who hobnobs with the celebrity audience members; Tom Hanks, a fave guest host, offers up a lively Q&A session (with a dryly funny Christopher Walken, among others); and Billy Crystal revives his Fernando persona to great effect. Dan Aykroyd, Laraine Newman, and Steve Martin provide the best cast tribute, warmly remembering John Belushi while wryly offering up memorabilia for online auction, and Jan Hooks introduces a heartfelt short film featuring her and the late Phil Hartman. Other cast members, with the notable absence of Eddie Murphy and the surprise appearance of Norm MacDonald, pop up for various intros of clips--some are funny (Dennis Miller), some are not (Adam Sandler), some are obviously uncomfortable (David Spade), but at about the halfway mark it all starts to wear on you, like most tribute shows. Still, the stable of classic skits (including a surprisingly strong showing from the current cast) make this worth sticking around for. And at least this time, unlike during the live broadcasts, you can fast-forward through the unfunny parts. --Mark Englehart

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
41 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still crazy after all these years March 15, 2000
Amidst the perennial criticism of _Saturday Night Live_, it's easy to forget just how big an impact the show has had on our national artistic identity. This retrospective is a great place to begin that (re)discovery. Through its vast collection of clips from the show's 25-year run, one gains a real appreciation of the hundreds of colloquialisms, impressions, and comedic commentary this program has added to our national identity.
What makes this show uniquely satisfying, however, is that it has significant original programming, including remarkable new material from Billy Crystal, Tom Hanks, Bill Murray, Mike Meyers, Robert Smeigel, various "Weekend Update" anchors, and the Eurythmics.
There's also a fascinating montage on the production of a typical episode of SNL. True, this segment is in some ways cleverly-edited eye candy, but to my knowledge, it's the only SNL-produced filmed exposition of the backstage process at SNL. (There are three press bits on the DVD-version of the product which greatly amplify one's appreciation of the show, but SNL itself has still not produced a significant exploration of its own machinations.)
It is a difficult thing, I would imagine, to make an anniversary show where so much material already exists. The temptation for Lorne Michaels was probably to air many more clips than his staff ended up including. For every bit that was included, there were at least five that I personally might have included as well. What Michaels and company were going for, though, was not an anthology, but an anniversary party. And that's what they ended up with. The show is in no way like the "Best of [insert performer's name here]" series that SNL has recently been releasing.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not quite what you might expect January 9, 2000
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
After seeing most of the Saturday Night Live 25th Anniversary Show, including some of my favorite clips, I thought this would be a great DVD to have. I was somewhat surprised when I received my order that it contained only 1 disk. I wondered how a 4+ hour show could be condensed to one disk, but since it was DVD, anything was possible. The content on the disk is NOT the complete show. Many of the clips shown in their entirety where greatly shortened. While this is a nice remembrance of the 25th anniversary show, don't buy it thinking all of your favorite clips will be there whole.
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34 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Funny Retrospective April 5, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
How many Saturday Night Live alumni can you think of right off the top of your head? How many of their skits can you remember? How many movie-spin offs? If you are like many Americans, you can probably rattle off many of these figures. After 25 years, it is quite an impressive resume.
This 25th anniversary retrospective is filled to the brim with star power. From Chevy Chase to Molly Shannon, all generations of SNL personnel were represented in person, along with frequent guest-hosts like John Goodman and Steve Martin.
You won't find your favorite skits in their entirety in this compilation, nor will you see the same tired episodes of the famous recurring characters. Instead, there are five extended montages of each five-year period since SNL's initial broadcast. The skits are edited down, but in many cases, that is a blessing - we all know that some of them go on a lot longer than they should.
Along with these montages come the memorial segments. For each departed cast member, a skit highlighting his/her work was presented in its entirety. They were truly funny people. Also included in this retrospective were highlights from "Weekend Update" and some of the most memorable commercials.
The funniest new moments of the evening came during Bill Murry's lounge style introduction, and Billy Crystal's "mavalus" chit chat. It is hard to work an audience of your peers, and they did it better than the rest.
If you missed this when it was aired last fall, this is a must see.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars classic snl January 13, 2000
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Being a semi-regular viewer of SNL, and having missed this when it was broadcast, I jumped at the chance to get it. It is classic SNL, from the begining with Bill Murray as a host at an Indian Casino, to the intro by Chris Rock who has the funniest line about SNL and movies, this is non-stop laughs. The show is broken up in 5 year segments with cast members from those years introducing them. There are retrospectives of the deceased cast members with touching intoductions, the best by Jon Lovitz, followed by a favorite skit. The Weekend Update with all the anchor's was great. The audience is star studded. A well done very enjoyable program. A fitting tribute to a show that has been on the air for 25 years. Billy Crystal is hilarious interviewing audience members.
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24 of 29 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Saturday Night LAME.... May 16, 2001
Let me start by stating that I am a huge fan of SNL. The DVD is funny, at times very funny, but there are some problems. The skits that they show mainly last about 15 seconds. Just when you get rolling with your favorite skit, and start remembering it they shoot to the best scene of another skit, not giving you a chance to enjoy them. Another problem is that this was taped in front of a large audience of today's stars (Tom Hanks, Sarah Michelle Gellar etc.) and when they are playing the clips from past episodes the laughter from the audience TOTALLY drowns out the sound of the skit resulting in alot of missed words and "what did he say"'s. This in my case is very dissapointing, especially due to the fact that as I mentioned earlier the skits last 10-15 seconds, and when you miss 5 seconds of a skit due to laughter it doesnt leave much more to enjoy. When making the DVD they should have surpressed the live audience track alot, but I am not sure if thats possible. All in all its not a bad DVD, but surely not what I expected. I dont plan to watch it again :-(
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful
This special is probably the best of all of SNL's specials and I would know because I have seen them all. Read more
Published 3 months ago by AKR
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect !
Got 4 of these ! One new (for myself) and three, slightly used, (for my daughters for Christmas) and they got here in time and all were in perfect shape !
Published 3 months ago by Brenda Abrams
5.0 out of 5 stars great laughs
wonderful to relive and relaugh the olden days of SNL all were hilarious esp.Steve Martin,Dan Ackroyd and Eddie Murphy and all their stars that regularily performed in the... Read more
Published 6 months ago by E. Fiske
5.0 out of 5 stars A good recap of SNL's past 25 years
Very good historical volume of comedy covering all of SNL's stars. The volume was a little too long giving a full evening's
Published 10 months ago by Big Fred
5.0 out of 5 stars For all SNL fans!
What a great DVD! What an era of comedy! It has all the best scenes from it's first 25 years. Excellent quality, loads of funny stuff!
Published 16 months ago by JOHN GIROLAMO
3.0 out of 5 stars Danitra Vance barely got any recognition at all!
I have no problem with them not showing the full clips. The parts of the skits that they show are still funny. Read more
Published on January 7, 2012 by Larry Hirsch
5.0 out of 5 stars SNL Anniversary
It's got it all from Belushi to Fay, Gilda Radner to Cheri O'Teri and everything in between.
The best of the best bits and MORE!! Read more
Published on February 15, 2011 by Paulie G. Bones
5.0 out of 5 stars snl 25th anniversary
What a great birthday gift - laughter and immense satire! Thank you arrived in time and in mint condition.
Published on June 16, 2010 by Sharon S. Kinard
3.0 out of 5 stars Not worth it, Buy the Best Of's
This was an uneventful anniversary. If you were expecting an entertaining reunion or funny new material, forget it. Read more
Published on July 5, 2009 by Rube Goldfinger
5.0 out of 5 stars Geat Comedy
I loved seeing the 25th Anniversary DVD of Saturday Night Live. It has some of the funniest comedy on it. I particularly liked Alec Baldwins Mr. Schweaty.
Published on March 20, 2009 by Gini
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Topic From this Discussion
Martin Short
that is the very same skit I am looking for, and harry shearer plays his brother and christopher guest is their instructor. funniest ever and my favorite season of snl. if you find it please let me know. best, pat obryan
Sep 10, 2006 by pat obryan |  See all 2 posts
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