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The Professionals [Blu-ray]

248 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Burt Lancaster and Lee Marvin headline the top-notch, rip-roaring Western action/adventure, THE PROFESSIONALS. Four soldiers of fortune are hired by a wealthy Texan oil baron (Ralph Bellamy) to rescue his kidnapped wife (Claudia Cardinale), who's been spirited acress the Mexican Border by a band ofmercenaries led by Jesus Raza (Jack Palance). The four rugged professionals, each regarded as a specialist in his selected field - an expert marksman and tracker (Woody Strode), the explosives master(Lancaster), horse handler (Robert Ryan) and one skilled in tactics and weaponry (Marvin) - make their way across the treacherous landscape to retrieve the beautiful kidnappee, but discover all is not what it seems in the explosive climax. Excellent performances from an all-star cast, Maurice Jarre's haunting musical score and surprising plot twists make THE PROFESSIONALS a true classic. THE PROFESSIONALS garnered three Academy Award(r) nominations; two for Richard Brooks (Best Direction and BestA

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Before The Wild Bunch, there was The Professionals, Richard Brooks's marvelous ode to friendship, loyalty, and disillusionment. It may not have the stylistic bravado or fatalistic doom of the legendary Sam Peckinpah film, but Brooks's storytelling is simple and steady and just as insightful. The difference is Brooks is a lot more optimistic. Lee Marvin and Burt Lancaster are buddies who have drifted into oblivion after fighting together in the Mexican Revolution. Marvin, the principled loyalist and munitions expert, lost his wife and his heart. Lancaster, the dynamite expert and unprincipled adventurer, keeps losing his pants. They team up with wrangler Robert Ryan and archer Woody Strode to rescue the beguiling Claudia Cardinale, who has been kidnapped by their old revolutionary buddie Jack Palance. So it's back into bloody Mexico they go on a "mission of mercy" for railroad tycoon Ralph Bellamy, who's paying handsomely for the return of his wife.

But nothing is what it seems in this exciting, existential adventure, which was beautifully shot by Conrad Hall. Sarcastic quips, philosophical musings, and heart-rending reversals underlie Brooks's humanistic sentiments. These are tired, world-weary men who somehow find the strength and the will to pull together for the sake of love and commitment. Through it all, Brooks seems to be lamenting a decline in professionalism much deeper than his story. He's decrying Hollywood and the society at large, anticipating Peckinpah's later strategy. --Bill Desowitz

Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Robert Ryan, Woody Strode, Jack Palance
  • Directors: Richard Brooks
  • Writers: Richard Brooks, Frank O'Rourke
  • Producers: Richard Brooks
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Blu-ray, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Korean, Thai
  • Dubbed: French
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 10, 2008
  • Run Time: 117 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (248 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000HEVZ76
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,915 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Professionals [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

129 of 136 people found the following review helpful By cookieman108 on July 12, 2004
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Given the credentials of the people involved in bringing The Professionals (1966) to the screen, written and directed by Richard Brooks, who also did The Killers (1946), Key Largo (1948), Elmer Gantry (1967), and In Cold Blood (1967), starring Lee Marvin, Burt Lancaster, Robert Ryan, Woody Strode, and Jack Palance (Believe it....or not!), you would have thought I would have heard about it before now, but I didn't, and there you go...
Anyway, the film begins with the assemblage of four men by a rich, Texas cattleman named Joe Grant, played by Ralph Bellamy (the old dude who wasn't Don Ameche in the John Landis/Eddie Murphy/Dan Aykroyd movie Trading Places), for the purpose of rescuing his young wife Maria, played by the voluptuous Claudia Cardinale, from the clutches of her kidnapper, a Mexican rebel bandit named Jesus Raza (Palance). Seems Raza has made off with the woman and is now demanding $100,000 for her safe return, an amount Mr. Grant would be willing to pay, except he fears that even after he pays the monies, Raza would still harm his wife. As the men come together with the offer of $10,000 apiece if they're successful, we learn of their particular talents. First there's Henry 'Rico' Fardan (Marvin), a master tactician and someone who actually knows Raza as they served together in the Mexican revolution, followed by Bill Dolworth (Lancaster), who also served with Fardan and Raza, and is an expert with explosives, Hans Ehrengard (Ryan), whose skills involve horse wrangling, and finally Jake Sharp (Strode), an expert with weapons, specifically guns and the bow and arrow, and also an experienced tracker.
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102 of 115 people found the following review helpful By L. Moore on July 14, 1999
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I thoroughly enjoyed viewing The Professionals on DVD, with one exception...during a seduction scene between Lancaster and Cardinale, a black band is artificially placed across Cardinale's chest so that the viewer cannot see her in her topless glory. Wait a second, didn't I buy this disc? Why is this film being censored in this fashion? Viewers should be notified of this travesty before deciding whether to purchase an otherwise worthwhile film.
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57 of 64 people found the following review helpful By C. A. Luster on February 28, 2005
Format: DVD
Fans of great westerns will love this movie. I consider it one of the best ever made. Being a fan of movies like "The Magnificent Seven", "The Wild Bunch", "Once Upon a Time in the West", "Hombre", "Valdez is Coming", and "El Dorado", I think this one is a keeper too.

By far one of Lee Marvin's and Burt Lancester's best movies. Fine performances are turned in by Robert Ryan, Woody Strode, Jack Palance, and Ralph Bellamy too. Claudia Cardinale is decent but nothing to write home about. She is much better in "Once Upon A Time in the West".

The action is excellently paced and the direction is masterful. Add in beautiful scenery and good music and you have a winner. The story of men rescueing someone from overwhelming odds is not new, but this is a magnificent rendition of it. This DVD is well priced and I highly recommend it.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By T O'Brien on June 25, 2003
Format: DVD
The Professionals is a very entertaining western that does not receive the same hype as many other westerns made during the same time period. It is an excellent story with an even better cast. The story is about the efforts of four men to rescue a railroad tycoon's wife from the Mexican revolutionaries she was kidnapped by. They must travel deep into Mexico to rescue her battling bandits, the weather, and themselves all the way. The film is very good at dealing with the friendships between the men as the time and the land changes much as the Wild Bunch or Butch Cassidy/Sundance Kid did. How can these men change their lives as the world around them changes? The movie blends plenty of great dialogue with a ton of quotable lines, a lively score from Maurice Jarre, and great acting all-around. Can't miss western and highly recommended.

Burt Lancaster gives another excellent performance as Bill Dolworth, the explosives expert, Lee Marvin stars as Rico Fardan, the leader of the men and also a munitions expert, Robert Ryan plays Hans Ehrengard, the horse wrangler who cares so much for his horses, and Woody Strode gives an excellent supporting performance as Jacob Sharp, the adept tracker who dispatches his enemy with bow and arrow. All four give great performances. How could you go wrong with such a cast? Jack Palance is very good as Raza, the leader of the revolutionaries/bandits who has a past with . Ralph Bellamy plays the husband who desperately wants his wife back, played by Claudia Cardinale who looks beautiful. The new Special Edition DVD includes three excellent featurettes, "The Professionals: A Classic," "Burt Lancaster: A Portrait," and "Memories from the Professionals" which includes interviews with Claudia Cardinale, widescreen presentation, and a theatrical trailer.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By David Baldwin on April 23, 2005
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Oil Baron (Ralph Bellamy) hires four specialists(Lee Marvin, Burt Lancaster, Robert Ryan, Woody Strode) to rescue his young Mexicana bride(Claudia Cardinale) out of the clutches of a revolutionary (Jack Palance) from behind the Mexican border. Sounds simple? Not in this complex film. Our heroes are flawed, disillusioned men and the bad guys aren't as bad as they seem. Credit director-screenwriter for crafting a western that stands the conventions of the form on it's head and keeps you guessing until the bitter end. Marvin and Lancaster are in top iconic form here. Cardinale adds a voluptuous mystique to her character. Palance contributes a complex reading to a character type that in previous films of this kind were cliched. This film also boasts gorgeous cinematography courtesy of the legendary Conrad Hall, a rollicking score by Maurice Jarre, and action sequences that are at the same time thrilling yet make sense.
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