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The Jazz Singer - 25th Anniversary Edition (1980)

Neil Diamond , Laurence Olivier , Richard Fleischer  |  PG |  DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (198 customer reviews)

Price: $128.74 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Neil Diamond, Laurence Olivier, Lucie Arnaz, Catlin Adams, Franklyn Ajaye
  • Directors: Richard Fleischer
  • Format: Color, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (DTS ES)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
  • DVD Release Date: October 18, 2005
  • Run Time: 115 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (198 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000AQ69SQ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,442 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Jazz Singer - 25th Anniversary Edition" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Audio Commentary with Producer Jerry Leider
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • TV Spot
  • Poster & Still Gallery
  • Cast & Crew Bios

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Neil Diamond stars as Yussel in this tale of a young Jewish cantor who strives to make a career in music. Against the wishes of his rigid father and his loving wife, Yussel travels to California to play his music. Swept up by the excitement, he meets a woman who shares his dream. He grows apart from his family, and becomes confused about what he should ultimately do with his life.

Not much jazz spoken in this 1980 version of the Jolson classic, directed by Richard Fleischer (The Vikings) and starring a very tentative Neil Diamond as a cantor's son who would rather sing commercially than in a synagogue. The soundtrack is tedious, the portrait of L.A.'s music industry preposterous, and Diamond (despite his talents as a singer-songwriter in the real world) can't help but look like a speck on the wall in the presence of Laurence Olivier, who plays his father. --Tom Keogh

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
132 of 134 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better then ever in 2005! October 18, 2005
Hopefully I am the first to rate the 25th Anniversary DVD of this movie.

First of all, if you have the original copy that was released a few years back, get rid of it! The sound quality of this version is WAY better! (No more turning the volume way up for the dialogue, then way down for the music.) This is also done in widescreen, so you can see EVERYTHING! Also, unlike the original, there are actual REAL extras on this version: the original theatrical trailer, a TV spot, commentary by the producer, still shots, mini-bios of Neil, Lucie, Lawrence, and Richard Fleischer, AND you can select the sound as well! This is worth the money! I only wish my mother was here to see this version, as she was a Neil Diamond freak and loved this movie! This would've been one of her Christmas gifts this year.
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44 of 49 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Seven million votes June 11, 2000
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
I don't understand how some have said that this is not a good film. Lucie Arnaz is wonderful in her role as Neil Diamond's supporter and wife. The soundtrack sold over 7 MILLION copies and I remember the feeling the songs gave me years later. The songs are not "soapy" but are full of meaning for people of all ages. Neil Diamond is not a great actor but does a good job all the way through and a great job when dealing with his Jewish father. I saw the movie today for the first time in 12 years and it still brought tears to my eyes. The party scene after they move to LA and get fired is short but so much genuine fun to watch. I thought Lucie Arnaz was the best part of the movie.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure entertaining enjoyment July 29, 2002
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Perhaps because of my Music Teacher background, this movie rings so many is not for the teenage boys, who only enjoy motorcycle mania or special effects. This is a movie for folks who enjoy seeing and hearing art being created, the struggles involved and sacrifices given, the labor in bringing it forth.
Mr. Diamond does very well in his only acting venture, helped by the greatest actor who every lived, Sir Lawrence Olivier (Heathcliff, Henry 5, Hamlet etc. etc.) Who wouldn't be intimidated just being in the same room with the man, never mind having to share lines with him. Mr. Diamond's performance showed a great reverance for both the story line taken from the original "Jazz Singer" by Al Jolson, and the new update with wonderful music, plus the feeling of being honored to share a stage with Sir Olivier. It is a film for Teachers and Lovers of musicals, a genre which has been lost in Hollywood and in the Music industry.
No wonder there is no music left, only two-note noise. Buy this movie and be surrounded by singable tunes.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful movie; wonderful music. March 11, 1999
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
OK, so it's not a "real life" picture of the music business in California, or of how relationships begin and end. But it's a sweet story of a young jewish cantor who respects his roots, but has a deeper yearning to experience life outside the small community of his synagogue. Neil Diamond and Lucy Arnez each give a tender performance. The movie is sad enough to make you cry, but happy enough to make you feel satisfied at the end. To me, the song "Hello Again" is one of the most beautiful ever written. If you like Neil Diamond's music, you'll probably enjoy this movie. And yes, DO bring the kleenex.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ohhhh Baby, Baby, Ohhhh Baby Baby Now November 3, 2005
Fabulous movie, father and son relationship is so touching, it makes you cry if you are the sensitive type. As for the editorial written by Keough, he must be jealous. Critics have always been too quick to insult and degrade Mr. Diamond. Shame on them for their jealousy. Mr Diamond at 64 years old is still a heart throb to many many fans. Back to the movie, if you have never seen this movie, it is worth it for many reasons. Mr. Diamond's acting skills are as good as any acting I have ever seen. Mr. Olivier performance when he becomes re-united with his son (Neil Diamond) makes you just cry. Love it, love it. Glad they re-released it, many family members of mine look forward to receiving it. They have had to borrow my copy.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than when I first saw it July 24, 2006
Don't listen to the critics about The Jazz Singer. I just saw the movie again after about 15 years, and it's still wonderful. I thought everyone did a great. I've always been a Neil Diamond and Lucie Arnez fan, and they are both terrific. I'm now anxious to listen to my Jazz Singer soundtrack again. Wonderful songs and great acting by everyone. Some critics stated with was a BOMB, but don't listen to them. The movie is 116 minutes and the time just flew by for me. I feel watching it now it's gotten better and better. The extras are pretty good with long detailed information about the main actors. I wish Neil or Lucie would have done commentary, but still a winner in my book
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Music + Great Plot = 5 Stars August 30, 2002
Format:VHS Tape
Even if you're not a big fan of Diamond's music, the plot of this movie will still strike a touching chord. Many people will be able to identify with the father/son conflict. This movie not only gives insight into how the music industry (especially the search for new talent) works, but is also inspiring to those who dream of becoming successful musicians themselves. Although released in 1980, the story is universal and still applies today (even the romance in the sub-plot is well done). Fans of Neil Diamond will love the many songs in this movie, but the songs also work as an integral part of the plot (this is not a mere venue for Diamond to show off his musical talents). Although he's not a professional actor, Diamond was perfect for this role. In fact, all of the actors in this movie were brilliant. This is my favorite movie, and my only complaint is that it's hard to find (practically non-existent in video stores).
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
as amazing now as it was the first 25 times I watched!
Published 7 days ago by kathie cimini
4.0 out of 5 stars It is too bad they could not clean up the old film video ...
Ask the wife it was for her and she watches it. It is too bad they could not clean up the old film video to make it look better on a modern screen.
Published 8 days ago by Larry S.
5.0 out of 5 stars Neil Diamond at his best
Neil Diamond and Lucy Arnaz are awesome together. The music is the best I have the VHS and have worn it out because I have seen the movie so many times because I am in love with... Read more
Published 12 days ago by Penguin1
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent product!!
Published 17 days ago by Kurt M.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 22 days ago by Perry Mark
5.0 out of 5 stars Neil Diamond Rocks!!
What can I say, Neil Diamond, enough said!!
Published 1 month ago by Sara D Montemayor
5.0 out of 5 stars Must see for anyone, not just Neil Diamond fans
Excellent movie. Neil Diamond at his best. Fabulous music.
Published 1 month ago by mccartneyalarmclock
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Just what I wanted came in a timely matter!
Published 2 months ago by Suzan Gardner
5.0 out of 5 stars ... dvd was everything I expected and now I canwatch it as much as I...
This dvd was everything I expected and now I can watch it as much as I want. I have worn out at least 3-4 vhs tapes and will enjoy this.
Published 2 months ago by william colvin
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
I bought this for a friend and no problems.
Published 2 months ago by Douglas L. Kupke
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