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The 3 Worlds of Gulliver

49 customer reviews

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
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(Apr 16, 2002)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Kerwin Mathews stars as Gulliver, the swashbuckling doctor who sets sail for fame and fortune in the fabled East Indies, but finds adventure, romance and danger instead in Brobdingnag and Lilliput, the infamous lands of the great and small. One of the most complicated films of its time, THE 3 WORLDS OF GULLIVER is both an enchanting fantasy and a captivating visual treat. Because the storyline calls for scenes that juxtapose forty-foot giants with six-inch-tall people, special effects wizard Ray Harryhausen perfected a state-of-the-art trick photography process so innovative, they had to invent a new word for it: Superdynamation.

Imaginative special effects by the legendary Ray Harryhausen are the highlights of this adaptation of Jonathan Swift's classic fantasy novel. Kerwin Mathews, who rose to fame after appearing opposite Harryhausen's "Superdynamation" effects in The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad (1958), stars as the English Dr. Gulliver, whose travels bring him in contact with both the diminutive Lilliputians and the gigantic Brobdingnagians. Director Jack Sher's script (with Arthur Ross) tempers Swift's pointed satire in favor of broader humor, and the musical numbers are decidedly unwelcome, but viewers of all ages will be delighted by the film's spirited action and Bernard Herrmann's rousing score. Harryhausen aficionados may be disappointed by the lack of fantastical creatures on display (though a giant squirrel and alligator are impressive), but his matte work here is nothing short of spectacular. --Paul Gaita

Special Features

  • Making-of featurette
  • "This is Dynamation" featurette
  • "The Harryhausen Chronicles" featurette

Product Details

  • Actors: Kerwin Mathews, Sherry Alberoni, Ray Harryhausen
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dubbed, Widescreen, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Dubbed: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Columbia Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: April 16, 2002
  • Run Time: 98 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000062XE5
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #25,320 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The 3 Worlds of Gulliver" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Berkley S. Summers on March 28, 2005
Format: DVD
If you're considering a purchase of this title, but are wary because of the occasional misinformation and confusion regarding the original screen ratio and the preservation of this ratio in the transfer, then don't fret. With no intention of starting a debate, I can comfortably state that the film hasn't been re-formatted to fit your screen (although this is inaccurately stated before the film begins). Concerned that the studio/corporation had balked on an authentic widescreen transfer, I spent more time than I care to admit in pursuit of clues and/or answers without doing any severe film-scholar-like research. Anyway, although you may encounter what appears to be a 16X9 transfer in the U.K. and EU markets, I don't believe that these are any more accurate than the supposed widescreen preview/trailer found on several of the Harryhausen Collection discs. In fact, it's the very preview on "3 Worlds" for "3 Worlds" that solved the riddle. Here's the deal: It's a banded, or barred trailer (wherein the black bars at the top and bottom are actually hiding or covering the picture beneath). Whether this was done for exhibition on a 1:85 to 1 or 16X9 big screen, I can't say, but the visual material in between the bars is composed the same as the "supposedly" cropped transfer. I took a couple of easy-to-find images from the trailer and double-checked them by using the chapter search. Anyway, you don't want the widescreen version of "3 Worlds" anymore than you want a widescreen version of "Shane." It simply isn't the screen ratio in which these films were shot. If you think I'm wrong, then please check for yourself. Screen composition and visuals are only being compromised in the artificially "wide" versions.Read more ›
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Robin Simmons VINE VOICE on July 9, 2002
Format: DVD
"THE HARRYHAUSEN CHRONICLES" focuses on the art of Ray Harryhausen. This affectionate and classy documentary is a perfect companion title to the feature "20 Million Miles to Earth." Narrated by Leonard Nimoy and written, produced and directed by Richard Schickel, Time magazine's film critic and film historian, this entertaining celebration of Harryhausen's singular cinematic legacy features numerous film clips and observations by George Lucas and others whose lives were impacted by his films. Harryhausen says the "essence of fantasy is the transfer of reality into the imagination." Certainly his remarkable stop-motion sequences have entertained generations and haunted memories. Schickel says it best with an observation spoken by Nimoy: "In this moment of mechanized imagination, this unforgettable work recalls for us the value of the open and wondering eye and the informed and compassionate heart."
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Michael Butts HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on June 19, 2004
Format: DVD
Jonathan Swift's satirical novel is given the Ray Harryhausen treatment, and though most of the satire is lost, there still remains echoes of it. For instance, the war the Lilliputians are involved in revolves around the best way to crack open your eggs...from the top or the bottom? And of course in Brobdingnag, any unusual behavior is attached to witchcraft..sound familiar?
At any rate, this is one of the least visually impressive of Harryhausen's works, mainly because the script didn't call for a lot of the trademark stop action effects. The squirrel and alligator are impressive, but don't come near any of the other creatures Harryhausen so brilliantly created. For a 1960 film, however, the effects are impressive.
Kerwin Mathews, who gained his stardom with THE SEVENTH VOYAGE OF SINBAD and JACK THE GIANT KILLER is sort of a British John Gavin. His dashing good looks and charming accent made him an ideal catch for the idealist Gulliver. Jo Morrow (the original 13 Ghosts) played Gwendolyn, and June Thorburn (Tom Thumb) was Gulliver's Elizabeth. The talented character actor Gregoire Aslan was a perfectly foppish Emperor, and Lee Patterson (Tv'S Surfside 6) a gallant prime minister.
While not a bad film by any means, GULLIVER just doesn't have the overwhelming magic of previous Harryhausen efforts. But it is entertaining and I think kids will like it.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Erik Morton on June 12, 2003
Format: DVD
Like most of Ray Harryhausen's films, THE 3 WORLDS OF GULLIVER is not a film to watch for plotting and drama. The acting is overall mediocre (the girl who plays Glumdalclitch is terrible), and the plot removes much of Swift's satirical touches that made his book so damn ingenius. It is a movie to simply entertain you, and it succeeds excellently at that. Like the reviews on the cover and booklet included in the DVD state, the two most notable features of the film are the music and special effects. Bernard Herrmann's whimsical score is one of his best, and you'll find yourself whistling the melodies for weeks afterwards. And, of course, there are the special effects; they are nothing short of astonishing. This was 1960, people, and they totally outdo some of the ... CGI plaguing the cinema these days! Diehard Harryhausen fans may be disappointed with the fact that the film is almost devoid of any stop-motion effects. However, what IS present (during the two scenes with the giant squirrel and alligator) is extremely impressive. The main effects in the film are those of miniscule and giant people, and they're some of the best special effects I've ever seen.
THE 3 WORLDS OF GULLIVER is part of Columbia Pictures' "Ray Harryhausen Signature Collection", and like all other titles, the first-rate documentary "The Ray Harryhausen Chronicles" and the featurette "This Is Dynamation" are both included. As well, the film has digitally mastered audio and video, the latter of which has been remastered in high definition and looks brand-new.
No Ray Harryhausen DVD collection would be complete without THE 3 WORLDS OF GULLIVER, a rollicking good time complete with first-rate music and special effects.
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