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Sounder

103 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

From the classic book by William H. Armstrong comes Disney's all-new production of SOUNDER, an uplifting story of one boy's faith, strength, and dogged determination. As Boy's (Daniel Lee Robertson III) family faces the daily struggles of Depression-era sharecroppers, a loyal coonhound named Sounder becomes their only real friend. Food is scarce, and nightly hunting trips offer little relief. In an act of desperation, Father steals to feed his hungry family. When Father is convicted, it triggers Boy's courageous journey to find him in the labor camps. Boy comes a long way to discover much more -- a friendly teacher, a hunger to read, and a better life.

Amazon.com

In a quirk of film history, this new version of the 1972 classic is directed by Kevin Hooks--who played the central role of the sharecropper's son in the original. That's a nice full circle, although it leaves unanswered a basic question: why bother remaking a movie that got it right the first time? The story is simplicity: a black family in the Depression suffers when the father is arrested for stealing a ham. The punishment? Five years, hard labor. Sounder has an under-rehearsed, rushed quality common to low-budget TV pictures, although Carl Lumbly brings a powerful presence to the role of the father. (That's Paul Winfield, the star of the original, as the teacher who befriends the son.) The shortcomings may not matter much to the young audiences Disney targets, as they'll probably be too busy rooting for the return of the dog that gives the movie its name. --Robert Horton


Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Carl Lumbly, Suzzanne Douglass, Daniel Lee Robertson III, Peter MacNeil, Bill Lake
  • Directors: Kevin Hooks
  • Writers: Bill Cain
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Walt Disney Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 24, 2003
  • Run Time: 87 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (103 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000093FHD
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #100,272 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Sounder" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Chris Aldridge on August 2, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
"Sounder" is a film of sublime beauty- one of the most powerful films for anyone to see. Even though the title made no immediate sense to me (it's the name of the family dog), the plot and script is choice and proves what I've always believed regarding most scripts: less is more. Films which feature close, reverent African-American families are still rare in the 21st century, and this was a *1972* release- which broke ground when it was nominated at that year's Academy Awards for lead actor (Paul Winfield), lead actress (Cicely Tyson), screenplay (Lonne Elder III), and best picture. Only director Martin Ritt was not nominated- which was a travesty, but the Academy is historically famous for bonehead decisions. At any rate, I was happy to see a film which shows family supporting each other- even in the event of the father's absence. I won't say why that happens, but it's only temporary, and his third act return- staged against a long stretch of open farm field and spotlighting a barefoot Tyson and limping Winfield running into each other's arms- is a bewitching, magical, sequence in the film. Everyone is a standout, including Kevin Hooks's pre-teen who needs to grow up overnight and to Carmen Matthews as the neighbor who supports and tries to help the family. Even more amazing is that this is a G-rated film; your whole family- black, white, or brown- will absolutely cherish it. Nice to have in any recording, it needs to be released to DVD.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 4, 2003
Format: VHS Tape
There is something authentic about the original that this new version lacks. I remember being a child in school watching the Cicely Tyson & Paul Winfield classic, and I'm just being honest, but nothing beats the original. If you're going to watch the modern remake, do yourself the favor and enjoy the classic too! It's one-of-a-kind :)
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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 20, 2003
Format: DVD
This great movie deserves better treatment on DVD. The "extras" are worthless, the picture transfer is rather faded and flat, and the movie is presented in "pan and scan" format instead of the original widescreen. Dolby Mono.
This is a great movie with great music. Can't somebody see their way to giving it the DVD treatment it deserves?
On the plus side, it is cheap, and if you love this movie, you can look past these flaws.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on April 2, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
This heartwarming movie is one you'll never forget. Sounder is certainly one of Martin Kitt's(Director) best. Both children and adults will feel elated after seeing this movie. Based on the best-selling book, by William Armstrong, this film will blow you away.
When Nathan Lee Morgan, played by Paul Winfield, has to steal food from a local neighbor for his family, and gets arrested, the whole family has to pull through life, and survive without the man of the house. The Morgans are black sharecroppers during the depression. The family consists of the oldest son, David Lee(Kevin Hooks), the father Nathan Lee, the mother Rebecca(Cicely Tyson), David's brother and sister, and of course, Sounder the family huntin' dog. This story portrays how horrible life for blacks was. In this great dramatic and adventurous story, you will learn about what blacks had to go through just to feel equal.
The actors and actresses were wisely picked for this movie. The whole Morgan Family 'walks the walk and talks the talk'. By this, I mean that the actors/actresses had the perfect southern accent, and the perfect southern hospitality. Whether it was dramatic or funny, the actors did a phenomenal job portraying their character.
The moral to this story, I think, is that all people should be treated equally, no matter what race or color of skin. Back in the early 1930s, blacks were treated very unequally. They weren't allowed to go to the same church, and were accused of many things that they never even did. This movie explains all of this, and shows how the Morgan Family survives these everyday rules.
The setting of this story is in Louisiana in 1933. As sharecroppers, the Morgan's don't own much but their own clothes and some food.
Read more ›
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By MAXIMILLIAN MUHAMMAD HALL OF FAME on February 2, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
this film still has strong quality and values in times of need.Cicely Tyson does a wonderful job at holding her family together.this is one of the best family films ever.it captures pain,struggle,joy&love all at once.
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Format: DVD
Here's a film that portrays two aspects of American history that pull at your heartstrings: the Great Depression and Racism. Cicely Tyson and Paul Winfield star in this story about a family of black sharecroppers who endure the hardships of poverty and prejudice when the father is imprisoned for stealing food to feed his starving family. Nominated for four Oscars, this 1972 classic film is beautifully told and teaches many valuable lessons about honesty and love even in the face of adversity. Director, Martin Ritt pulls outstanding performances from the entire cast and recreates 1930s south in a believable and wonderful tale. In spite of all the hardships, the film is filled with lightness, music and laughter and makes for good entertainment. Ranny Levy, KIDS FIRST!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 7, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
THE ONLY THING WRONG WITH THE MOVIE "SOUNDER" IS THAT (IF MEMORY SERVES) IT CAME OUT THE SAME YEAR AS "THE GODFATHER" AND CONSEQUENTLY DIDN'T GARNER DESERVED ACADEMY AWARDS FOR ACTOR, ACTRESS AND BEST PICTURE. A SIMPLE TALE, SIMPLY TOLD WITH GREAT HEART AND SOUL FOR THE FAMILY INVOLVED. TYSON AND WINFIELD MADE NAMES FOR THEMSELVES IN THIS MOVIE, THOUGH, PITY, WERE NOT REALLY REWARDED WITH GREAT SUBSEQUENT ROLES, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF TYSON'S "AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF MISS JANE PITTMAN". A GREAT FAMILY FILM THAT WILL AFFECT MEMBERS OF ALL AGES. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
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