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The Game (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] (1997)

Michael Douglas , Sean Penn , David Fincher  |  R |  Blu-ray
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (388 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Michael Douglas, Sean Penn, Deborah Kara Unger, James Rebhorn, Peter Donat
  • Directors: David Fincher
  • Format: DTS Surround Sound, NTSC, Color, Widescreen, Subtitled
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Criterion Collection
  • DVD Release Date: September 18, 2012
  • Run Time: 128 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (388 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B008CJ0JTI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,587 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

  • New, restored digital transfer, supervised by director David Fincher and director of photography Harris Savides, with original theatrical 5.1 surround theatrical soundtrack, in DTS-HD Master Audio on the Blu-ray edition
  • Alternate 5.1 surround mix optimized for home theater viewing, supervised by sound designer Ren Klyce and Fincher, in DTS-HD Master Audio on the Blu-ray edition
  • Audio commentary by Fincher, Savides, actor Michael Douglas, screenwriters John Brancato and Michael Ferris, digital animation supervisor Richard “Dr.” Baily, production designer Jeffrey Beecroft, visual effects supervisor Kevin Haug, and visual effects producer Robyn D’Arcy
  • An hour’s worth of exclusive behind-the-scenes footage and film-to-storyboard comparisons for four of the film’s major set pieces, with commentary
  • Alternate ending
  • Trailer and teaser trailer, with commentary
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic David Sterritt

  • Editorial Reviews

    Enormously wealthy and emotionally remote investment banker Nicholas Van Orton (Traffic’s Michael Douglas) receives a strange gift from his ne’er-do-well younger brother (Milk’s Sean Penn) on his forty-eighth birthday: a voucher for a game that, if he agrees to play it, will change his life. Thus begins a trip down a rabbit hole that is puzzling, terrifying, and exhilarating for Nicholas and viewer alike. This multilayered, noirish descent into one man’s personal hell is also a surreal, metacinematic journey that, two years after the phenomenon Se7en, further demonstrated that director David Fincher was one of Hollywood’s true contemporary visionaries.

    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    103 of 121 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Intelligent Thriller May 22, 2003
    What happens when you are a powerful multi-millionaire and have everything you ever wanted? While you and I might think this situation is highly desirable, for Nicholas Van Orton, played by Michael Douglas, it is very boring. In fact, you might say that Nicholas is miserable. However, Nicholas' brother Conrad Van Orton, played by Sean Penn, has bought Nicholas a gift for his 48th birthday, an invitation to play "The Game".
    From this point forward the movie drags for what seems forever. I was beginning to regret watching this movie. Looking back, though, I now know that this beginning helps us to more fully understand how boring and awful Nicholas' life is, and further provides an excellent contrast with what happens later in the movie.
    Nicholas is in a very upscale restaurant when a waitress (Deborah Unger as Christine) spills wine on his shirt. Christine is fired by the restaurant manager and leaves, very upset. Before you can say white rabbit, a waiter rushes by Nicholas' table and drops off a note that tells Nicholas' to follow the girl. Prepare for the roller coaster ride.
    Within moments Nicholas finds himself involved with an apparently dying man, then just as quickly he finds he is being chased by the police, and police dogs, and things just get worse and worse. The list of things to which Nicholas is subjected is too long and would leave you with no surprises.
    Nicholas tries to figure out how to make all the action and events to which he is being subjected stop. Nicholas can't handle the loss of control. Further, the chaos of his experiences seems to follow no pattern or order. Eventually Nicholas gets back to where he thinks it all began for a showdown with the characters that he has discovered are actors. The ending had me stunned and amazed.
    Read more ›
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    42 of 49 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars left my friends and i awake thinking March 16, 2000
    Format:VHS Tape
    The Game was directed by Fight Club director David Fincher and in many ways it prepares the viewer for the twists and turns of Fight Club. Michael Douglas as control junky investment banker Nicholas Van Orton is given an invitation to "the game" by his younger brother Conrad (Sean Penn). Before Van Orton knows it the game has started and it takes him on journey where he is in the dark so to speak and he never really gets out of it until it is over. Other reviews have said that it has no sense of humor, this movie doesn't need one. it's mysterious and intellectual strength is more than enough to keep most people fixed to it. Others have said that the ending is anticlimactic. If one cannot appreciate the ending of this movie, they haven't been paying attention. If you want a movie that makes you think, this movie is for you. my friends and i started it sometime after midnight a couple years ago and we didn't sleep for an hour after it was done because it made us think that much. the movie buff will not be disappointed.
    Was this review helpful to you?
    29 of 33 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Surprise, surprise! A great thriller! October 13, 2000
    Once in a while you come across a great thriller. To accomplish this you have to have a great story line, superb acting and cinematography, a generous budget and an excellent styling consultant so that everything's just perfect. And The Game has all these aspects. A wealthy financier (Michael Douglas) who has apparently everything and is bored with life gets a surprise birthday gift from his brother (Sean Penn): the participation in a very interesting and intense game. It is one of these movies that is unpredictable for the most part with action scenes that will take your breath away. The ending is unique and an unpredictable surprise and it gives the movie the final edge to classify it as one of these rare top-rated thrillers.
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    9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Has to be seen twice to appreciate it March 24, 2001
    I saw this movie when it first came out. Upon first viewing, I enjoyed it for several qualities. Director David Fincher provides a really creepy, eerie atmosphere to the story. The cinematography has a dark, eerie look (as in Seven). The music (such as the tinkering piano) has a way of creeping up on you. Michael Douglas is terrific, as usual. Towards the 2nd half however, I started to lose interest. I found the story was just cranking on and on with no point. By the end, I was dissappointed with the payoff. I felt it didn't have to go on so long to explain it's point. I guess this is the reason it didn't perform so well at the box office. The 2nd time I watched this was a different story. Knowing in advance about the ending, I could pay more attention to the meaning of all of the scenes (I don't want to give too much away). The early flashbacks are there to tell you what kind of unhappy, selfish, lonely person Douglas is like. As the movie progresses, you begin to see him changing as he is going through the game. This is the whole point of the story, not what is really going on. By the time the payoff has come around, you are touched with what has occured. The viewer is not really supposed to be surprised at the end, but emotionally moved. What I really would like to see someday is a DVD with Fincher's director's commentary. This is such a complex movie where each scene needs to be explained. I hope David Fincher does that someday (like the new Seven DVD). One minor note: For those of you complaining about how far fetched the movie is, this movie is supposed to be unreal. I could not believe one minute of it, but Fincher makes it clear he doesn't want you to believe in it. The Game is part mystery, part fantasy (as in the Twilight Zone).
    Was this review helpful to you?
    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    5.0 out of 5 stars The Game
    My husband loves this movie. He kept renting it and I desided to buy this copy for him. Great movie!
    Keeps you on the edge of your seat
    Great condition!
    Published 13 hours ago by EL
    5.0 out of 5 stars Will Blow Your Mind.
    The twists and turns of this movie are amazing, its like a sledgehammer blow every time a twist happens. Best movie I have seen in a long time 10/10
    Published 2 days ago by J
    5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie
    Loved it! I am not much of a Michael Douglas fan and I do not really care for Sean Penn, but this was a fantastic movie! Read more
    Published 3 days ago by Osball
    5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie!
    It was a really interesting movie. Especially seeing the extreme this man's brother would go through to play a trick on his brother. Read more
    Published 11 days ago by tia griffin
    5.0 out of 5 stars still just as entertaining!
    watched this movie over a decade ago, this movie is just as brilliant now as it was then! my nieces got a kick out of it!
    Published 19 days ago by Azra
    3.0 out of 5 stars Gift For My Hubby!
    This was a gift for my hubby who loves this movie......while I thought it was good, he can't stop raving about it and the twists....just great for him and for ;)
    Published 22 days ago by CJ
    5.0 out of 5 stars The Game
    The Game took me by surprise! I had no idea what this movie would be like, but after i saw the illusions. i had to order the movie. Read more
    Published 28 days ago by Midnight1
    4.0 out of 5 stars great concept
    What gazillionaires are able to do if forced to have free time....
    Well executed and perfectly cast. It even works on repeated viewing.
    Published 1 month ago by Mark Anderson
    5.0 out of 5 stars Great
    You'll love it. You must get it and watch it. You will not regret it I promise you. Just do it.
    Published 1 month ago by Matt
    5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic
    This movie is a must have , great suspense fantastic actors, this is a must have for teh cd collection wall
    Published 1 month ago by K. Hart
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