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Tony Bennett: An American Classic

57 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Tony Bennett, Robert De Niro, Elton John, Catherine Zeta-Jones, k.d. lang
  • Directors: Rob Marshall
  • Format: Import, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Studio: Sony/Bmg Int'l
  • DVD Release Date: February 19, 2007
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000MV82SO
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #744,869 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
To accompany his lustrous "Duets" CD, perennial crooner Tony Bennett recruited some first-rank talent behind and before the cameras to help him produce this remarkable TV special to commemorate his 80th birthday. It is at once a throwback to the network variety specials from the 1960's and 70's (before pay-cable rendered them obsolete) and a reinvention of the format incorporating biographical elements within the context of mini-video performances. The result aired on NBC earlier this week as an hour-long special. Without commercials, the program scarcely runs forty minutes, but it remains a superbly crafted showcase for a timeless singer. Thanks to Rob Marshall's innovative conception and immaculate direction, the show follows a roughly chronological timeline of Bennett's career with nine starry-eyed duets connected by brief snippets of his professional milestones.

Things start on a high note with Bennett in an empty theater singing Charlie Chaplin's "Smile" joined by a mellifluous-sounding Barbra Streisand, his most accomplished partner for the evening. In a jazz nightclub setting, he is surrounded by the acrobatic Tony Bennett Dancers and swings though "Sing, You Sinners" with a confident John Legend. In a recording booth at Columbia Studios, Bennett sings his first hit, "Because of You" accompanied by smoky vocals from k.d. lang and a languorous trumpet solo by Chris Botti. Visually, my favorite part of the program is the black-and-white recreation of the 1960's-style variety show complete with dancers in sailor tops and Capri pants. In this segment, Diana Krall joins Bennett on a finger-snapping "The Best Is Yet to Come" followed by a sonorous version of "The Shadow of Your Smile" given a samba-accented makeover by Columbian rock singer Juanes.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Bruce London on November 24, 2006
Format: DVD
I've seen Tony 5 times live and have all his records. The dvd was great, what there was of it! PLEASE, what happened to the filming with Sting, Bono, Celine, Mcgraw etc??????If time was a problem then I have no problem with the edited program-a one hour special on TV. BUT, why didn't Sony film the rest and offer it to us on a full length dvd???I would gladly have paid for a complete film. Shame on you Sony!
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By R. Stapleford on December 24, 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This DVD was excellent as far as it went. However I saw the show when it was presented on TV. I was very disappointed that when veiwing the DVD at least four maybe more artists were left off . I never would have bought this product had I known that it was not complete. I feel cheated and want others to realize that they are not getting a complete show.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Al Lutz on December 22, 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
...and offers the choice of a rich sounding PCM Stereo (default) or an atmospheric (and tastefully restrained) 5.1 Dolby Digital surround mix (offered via the audio set-up menu). All of the bonus material is also presented in 16x9 anamorphic and in stereo - "enhanced for widescreen televisions." The show really takes advantage of this movie-like format - adding to the classy elegance of the, alas, much-too-short presentation.

I only note this here because nowhere on the packaging or on the disc itself is this information offered. It's obvious this was shot in HD, and apparently there will also be a Blu-Ray release of this title.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Cherilyn A. Jepsen on February 21, 2007
Format: Blu-ray
Outstanding duets. Tony Bennett again multi-generational. That's why he's still winning awards. LOVE the blu-ray format.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Zachary Vassar on March 26, 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
First, I give this four starts and not five only for the brevity of the program. But 40-odd minutes still offer many opportunities to appreciate what this 80 year-old can do! The creative program was directed by Rob Marshall and includes choreography (Tony even dances a bit) and visuals that live up to his Chicago accomplishments. Being something of a purist, I have to say I was initially skeptical of the "guest list." Each musician rises to the challenge, and the songs alternate between touching and flashy. Tony shines in each tune, an effect heightened by a full orchestra and elaborate sets. The film quality is excellent and vivid as is the sound recording. I found myself watching and re-watching sections over and over again -- you will, too. The extra features (including the "making of" documentary) are very interesting, too. This project was clearly a work of love for all involved. What a fine way to celebrate Tony's career.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By J. D. ROSE on April 10, 2007
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Uncompressed PCM stereo is superb. Picture is excellent, if you like contempary style music, this is a must.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Michael E. Todaro on September 27, 2007
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Everything about this show is top notch. I have the Blu-ray version and the video and audio quality was superb. The production was outstanding and was patterned after some of the old time tv variety shows. Every guest that performed seemed to thoroughly enjoy themselves and were at the top of there game. I would highly recommend this in any format but the Blu-ray version really stands out.
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