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Save the Tiger (1973)

Jack Lemmon , Jack Gilford , John G. Avildsen  |  R |  DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)

List Price: $12.98
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Product Details

  • Actors: Jack Lemmon, Jack Gilford, Laurie Heineman, Norman Burton, Patricia Smith
  • Directors: John G. Avildsen
  • Writers: Steve Shagan
  • Producers: Jack Lemmon, Edward S. Feldman, Martin Ransohoff, Steve Shagan
  • Format: Color, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: October 25, 2005
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000ANVPSS
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #70,013 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Save the Tiger" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

There are several films for which Jack Lemmon deserved to win the Oscar--The Apartment and Days of Wine and Roses among them--but it was this low-key entry from 1973 that garnered the gold (following a supporting award for Mister Roberts.) Harry Stoner is a Watergate-era man in the gray flannel suit--even if his is "Italian silk." Sure, he's got the Beverly Hills manse, complete with maid, but business is hanging by a thread. When it starts to unravel, he risks losing everything. And finances aren't his only problem. After 30 years, he's still haunted by the war and only wants to talk baseball and big bands. His wife urges him to see a therapist. Phil (Jack Gilford, a fine foil) is Harry's garment-manufacturing partner. Neither is a model of business ethics, but when Harry suggests torching a factory for insurance money, Phil is mortified. He suggests they turn to the Mob, but Harry would prefer a quicker fix. As in The Swimmer, another painful portrait of the American Dream gone bad, John G. Avildsen (who picked up his own statuette for Rocky) takes a revealing snapshot of a dying breed. Like much of Lemmon's best work, it can be hard to watch, but just as hard not to. In retrospect, Harry looks like a dry run for the even more nakedly desperate characters of Glengarry Glen Ross and Short Cuts. If you ever wondered how they got that way--Save the Tiger is your answer. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

Product Description

Jack Lemmon won an Oscar. for this dramatic performance, considered by many to be his finest. Lemmon plays Harry Stoner, a man caught in violent collision with his past and present life. He believes there is nothing significant in his life except survival, and that instinct pushes him beyond moral conduct. He'll juggle the books, supply women for clients... and even set fire to his own dress manufacturing factory. He is drawn to an America when life not only had values and heroes, it all seemed worth living and building. But Harry is frightened to break away from the emptiness of his seemingly successful life.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Memorable performance by Jack Lemmon June 14, 1999
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
Interesting story with great performances by both Jack Lemmon and Jack Gilford. Lemmon won the Best Actor Oscar for his intense portrayal of a businessman and WW2 vet contemplating insurance fraud and arson, who is having a nervous breakdown while longing for the clarity of the past. Forget the critics who gave this a lukewarm reception, this is an excellent movie with memorable performances.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
Harry Stoner (Jack Lemmon) isn't having a good day. He's burned out on his seemingly successful life. He's in hock up to his eyeballs and is an example of Paul Simon's observation about the "quiet desperation" of American lives. Lemmon picked up a deserved Academy Award for his portrayal of Harry with its echoes of other Lemmon characters throughout the latter part of his life.

"Save the Tiger" looks particularly good. Paramount has done a nice, crisp and clean transfer here. While the film occasionally looks soft with noticeably grain in some sequences that's the result of age, the film stock and lighting conditions for the film. The 2.0 audio has nice clarity and presence.

I didn't see this mentioned anywhere when this was released (or on the box that I received with my preview copy) but there is a great commentary track from producer/writer Steve Shagan and director John G. Avildsen ("Rocky"). Both recall the difficulties they had in making the film and Lemmon's consummate professionalism in shooting this film. It's a pity that Lemmon wasn't tapped to provide a commentary while he was alive (and it's a pity that this wasn't issued earlier to take advantage of that) but having Shagan and Avildsen (much less any commentary track) relate their stories about the making of the movie is a delight.

An essential drama with a great performance by Jack Lemmon, "Save the Tiger" looks exceptionally good in this transfer from Paramount. Featuring a nice commentary track by Shagan and Lemmon, "Save the Tiger" is an enjoyable movie and fans will savor having this classic on DVD.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lemmon In One Of His Most Profound Roles April 25, 2002
Format:VHS Tape
Even though Save The Tiger May not of been a commercial sucsess
it still shows how great filmaking was once made. Basically
the story is about a day & a half in the Life of Harry Stoner
owner of a garment manufactuing company who's going through a
midlife crisis is in debt considers arson to his warehouse as a way of his troubles and manages to commit adultry. Jack Lemmon's
amazing performce which earned him a well deserved oscar plays
with sheer brillance and belivablity that he is pratcally in every scene of this film. One great scene was when Harry litterly
breaks emotinally thinking back to his army days seeing his friends wounded & killed when giving a speech at a fashion show.
No Matter how dated or strange this film may be today it's still
a great film it's defintely not a film for visual & special
effcts nuts but a film with certain amount of intelligence
and should be held as a clasic film.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lemmon Makes the Movie January 1, 2000
By Dave R
Format:VHS Tape
Jack Lemmon gives a performance that more than justifies his Oscar. Although difficult at first to sympathize with a Lincoln Continental-driving, Beverly Hills CEO, (this was 1973, and pre-Lexus), one cannot help but finding a purity and honesty in Lemmon's performance. Although far from a commercial hit (Lemmon agreed to do the film for scale wages),it's success lies as being a triumph in acting, interpretation, and honesty.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars You can see why Jack Lemmon won the Oscar February 11, 2003
Format:VHS Tape
Few people remember that this was the movie that Jack Lemmon won his Oscar in but it was well deserved. Dated in that obviously reeks of the late 60's and early 70's but a story line that would hold up today. Any business owner with a high rent, high life style and lots of people depending on you to produce understand the pressure that Harry Stoner was going through.
Great Actor in an interesting part. Movie gets low ratings by some critics as they think it is impossible for a business owner to be a sympatethic figure. Lemmon makes the part work and is an incredibly performance in a movie that is a true insight into how the world can get ugly at times.
Don McNay...
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
Jack Lemmon won the Oscar in 1973 for his performance in this movie. Jack Gilford was nominated for best supporting actor and it was also nominated for writing. The performances are very good. Theyer David makes a great impression as the professional arsonist Charlie Robbins, as well. The women in the movie are all more or less victims and are there to provide to the sense of moral decay in the movie. Not necessarily because they themselves are corrupt, but because they are consumed by the appetites of the men in the movie.

It is hard to capture the sense of America in 1973. Vietnam was in its death throes, the sexual revolution and drug culture were in full swing (hence all the casual promiscuity in the film), the schismatic rage over the Equal Rights Amendment was underway, Roe v. Wade was pushed on the country, Watergate was underway as were other corruption charges in the Nixon administration, and women were beginning to enter the workforce in large numbers.

Lemmon plays Harry Stoner. He is clearly suffering from what we would now call Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, but that wasn't really known at the time of this movie or was just beginning to be discussed because of Vietnam. Stoner is a World War II vet. He is unsuccessful in developing personal relationships because he deals with his pain by focusing on numbing it through work, through gratification of his sexual appetites, and fleeing intimacy. He dwells on his war experiences and is on the verge of a crackup.

His business is also about ready to fail because of bad finances. How much of his stress is caused by the business pressures or whether the business situation is caused by his narcissistic way of living is hard to distinguish.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Corporate Stress and manipulation at its worst, best!
Jack Lemmon took home the Best Actor Oscar for his superb portrayal of a philandering fashion proprietor in the failing garment business of the early to mid 1970's. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Bruce Grafford
5.0 out of 5 stars Jack Lemmon have such a realistic performance.
This is one of my favorite movies. One of my favorite shots is the opening scene of the movie. The overview of city melts into a deflated plastic swan in a swimming pool in the... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Christina Panczyk
4.0 out of 5 stars Reality and Futility
Save the Tiger's bleak theme is perfectly portrayed by Lemmon as Harry Stoner, who's played by the rules all his life, yet despite decades of hard work, and despite having a... Read more
Published 3 months ago by JBGood
4.0 out of 5 stars Jack Lemmon in an unusual role
I love Jack Lemmon and was surprised (to some extent) how different---from most of his roles--- this character is portrayed. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Paul
1.0 out of 5 stars Self-indulgent relic from the 70's
How this film is still generally well-regarded is beyond me. The dialogue reeks of "70's hip talk" - the bedroom scene at the film's beginning between Jack Lemmon and his wife ("I... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Joseph Deprospero
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic Lemmon film!
I've never seen a bad Jack Lemmon performance and Save The Tiger is one of his very best! This film captures the angst of 1970s life, on a personal and business level. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Scott C Marinoff
5.0 out of 5 stars Tremendously Dramatic and Human Depiction of Life Present and Life...
Jack Lemmon is absolutely one of the finest actor ever in the film business. Save the Tiger is the American quest to hold on to those things of value with the example of the... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Edward Griffin
4.0 out of 5 stars Forgotten
Watched the Long Goodbye on Netflix the other night, great movie, I upgraded it to five stars, then went back to see how it fared compared to its 1973 contemporaries. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Poe ballantine
3.0 out of 5 stars Forgettable
This movie was okay,I was really disappointed having worked in the garment center as a designer for 30 years it was all too common a story. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Nicci
5.0 out of 5 stars Save the Tiger as Baseball Movie
Few would immediately categorize Save the Tiger (the 1973 movie that garnered Jack Lemon an Academy Award for Best Actor) as a "baseball movie. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Carl Schinasi
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