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60 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars They Got Married In A Fever
I will preface this by saying I was never a big Johnny Cash fan, but after seeing the excellent way Hollywood handled Ray Charles ("Ray") and Bobby Darin ("Beyond the Sea") I was anxious to see what it would do for The Man in Black. The results are phenomenal. Now, I'm sorry I didn't pay more attention to John and June when they were still living.

Joaquin...
Published on January 10, 2006 by Antoinette Klein

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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good drama & acting, but if you want to know about Johnnie Cash's life, you need to go elsewhere.
This movie is a good work of fiction, based on the life of Johnnie Cash and June Carter. You get drawn in and care about most of the characters, good or bad, because the acting is so excellent. The excellent acting is supported by a very well-crafted screen play with some wonderful lines and scenes. It's a treat if you like good acting. However, if you want the real...
Published on October 23, 2006 by Tony Thomas


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60 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars They Got Married In A Fever, January 10, 2006
By 
Antoinette Klein (Hoover, Alabama USA) - See all my reviews
I will preface this by saying I was never a big Johnny Cash fan, but after seeing the excellent way Hollywood handled Ray Charles ("Ray") and Bobby Darin ("Beyond the Sea") I was anxious to see what it would do for The Man in Black. The results are phenomenal. Now, I'm sorry I didn't pay more attention to John and June when they were still living.

Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon are phenomenal as Johnny and June Carter Cash. This unlikely casting yields such outstanding results that I would hand them both the Oscar right now if I could. I read that Reese almost bailed on the project when she found out she had to do her own singing, but you would never know it from the great vocals and spunky performances she delivers.

The film focuses on their love affair, first as friends and then torrid even while he was married to his first wife and the mother of his children. His drug abuse is highlighted but it is Johnny Cash, the complex man and his love for June Carter, darling daughter of the close-knit and totally supportive Carter clan, that comes shining through and makes this a totally enjoyable movie.

Two big thumbs up for a movie that thrills from its opening at the infamous Folsom Prison to its spectatcular closing.
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74 of 80 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Movie is great but 2nd Disc a Disappointment, March 5, 2006
By 
Dale Rhines (Alexandria, VA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
A dilemna here. I loved the movie- think the performances are just terrific. The sound and video are really top-notch and the music really enjoyable. I also enjoyed the deleted scens on the first disc and really to think this is a movie worth adding to the personal collection. The problem I have is the features added to the 2-disc collection. They just are not very good. An example- a special on the Folsom Prison concert- clearly one of the most important steps in Cash's career. The special, though it has interesting excerpts of interviews from people who were there, does not have any footage or stills of the actual concert. I found the same to be true of the other specials on the disc as well. Lots of shots of the two stars but very little of the "Man in Black" himself. I would encourage people to buy the movie but to skip the special edition. It just is not worth the extra money, unless you really need five postcards of the stars from the film.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating, February 21, 2006
By 
Scott Delo (Washington, DC) - See all my reviews
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I recently saw this in the theater and had mixed feelings going in. The story seemed similar to last year's Oscar winning biopic on Ray Charles and I wasn't sure a story about Johnny Cash would hold my interest for two hours. After all, this was the singer my dad used to listen to. Little did I know how fascinating Cash's tale would be.

The story touches on Cash's childhood and the tragedy and abuse that would provide the basis for many of his songs. Johnny Cash didn't have the nicest voice but when he sings about pain and regret, you honestly believe he's inside Folsom Prison. Most of the film charts Cash's inevitable path from aspiring songwriter to cultural icon. He has the expected bumps along the way but the tale ends up being inspiring. Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon turn in Oscar worthy performances as Cash and his wife and frequent collaborator June Carter Cash. A fun part of the films is that Johnny and June were contemporaries of Elvis, Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis and we get to see them represented as well.

These kinds of movies are good for people of my generation because they bring home exactly how innovative and visionary the performers of the past were. It's easy to hear Johnny Cash's voice over an Alamo commercial or see Ray Charles crooning about Diet Pepsi and think they are just silly old men trying to milk their fame. Movies like this make us reinvestigate their pasts to see exactly how trend setting they were. Johnny Cash and Ray Charles were cool, they were the very essence of cool. It would be difficult to imagine the performers of today, many of whom are overindulged and overrated, paying the kinds of dues these guys did and coming up with anything as unique.
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318 of 380 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hmmm. Doesn't look like Nancy and Lee, November 18, 2005
In WALK THE LINE, Joaquin Phoenix shows that he's come a long way since his role as the crazy Caesar in GLADIATOR.

Those going into WALK THE LINE thinking it's a comprehensive film bio of Johnny Cash may perhaps come out slightly disappointed. While there's a relative brief sequence of his early years growing up on an Arkansas cotton farm, an even briefer sequence of his time in the Air Force in the early 50s, the film really begins in 1955 when, failing as a door-to-door salesman and wannabe gospel singer, he cuts a rock 'n' roll record for Sun Studios in Memphis and his career as a CW crooner takes off. The film ends with his marriage to June Carter in 1968. In between, against the backdrop of early hits, it focuses on his failed marriage to first wife Vivian (Ginnifer Goodwin), his self-destructive abuse of amphetamines, and rocky relationship with singer/actress Carter (Reese Witherspoon), a twice-divorced single mother of two.

The real treat of WALK THE LINE is watching Phoenix and Witherspoon amaze with Oscar-caliber dramatic performances. Who would have suspected that the latter was capable of anything other than light comedy?

In case you haven't seen the film and you're wondering, Phoenix and Witherspoon themselves sing the Cash/Carter material; they're surprisingly effective. Mind you, I've never been such a Cash fan that I've possessed any of his albums, and I've only previously downloaded one of his songs ("City of New Orleans"). Indeed, when Phoenix and Witherspoon recreate the Cash/Carter duet of "Jackson", my first thought was: Didn't Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood do that?

Coming out of the screening, my wife remarked that Phoenix sounded very much like Johnny himself. My response was a non-committal but prudent "Mmmm". Back home at the computer, I downloaded a couple more Cash songs, including his "Jackson" duet with Carter. To my ears, the real Cash had a singing voice that was slightly hoarser, and with a more pronounced slow drawl than Joaquin's version. While that doesn't detract from the actor's performance, it may cause purists to grumble.

The film's opening scene is of two guards on a tower at Folsom Prison listening to the bass "thump, thump, thump" washing over the prison yard from the hall in which Cash is about to perform his famous concert before the inmates. My wife and I were sitting in the front row of the studio screening theater and the sound reverberated through our bones. I knew then that WALK THE LINE was going to be an exceptional film.
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33 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Walk The Line - Extended Cut, March 25, 2008
This review is from: Walk the Line (Extended Cut) (DVD)
On March 25th, 2008, Fox Home Entertainment released Walk The Line 2-Disc Extended Cut. The DVD features the following...

Disc 1:

Extended Cut (153 mins.)
Audio Commentary by James Mangold

Disc 2:

Eight Extended Musical Sequences
More Men in Black: Deleted Scenes
Becoming Cash / Becoming Carter featurette
Sun Records & The Johnny Cash Sound featurette
The Cash Legacy featurette
Folsom: Cash & the Comeback featurette
Ring of Fire: The Passion of Johnny & June featurette
Cash and his Faith featurette
Celebrating the Man in Black: The Making of Walk the Line featurette
Walk the Line Theatrical Trailer

As for what is actually new about the Extended Cut, most of the new material is spread throughout. The new scenes range from a few seconds to a minute or two.

The Extended Cut is presented in it's original aspect ratio, 2.39:1. As with most Extended/Director's Cuts, a fullscreen version isn't offered.

Now for the special features, you get quite a helping on this release. They range from featurettes about the movies production such as the music, casting...etc.

Unless you really enjoyed Walk The Line, I seriouslly doubt you will double or even triple dip for this release. But if you really enjoyed it then an upgrade is warranted.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie - This version should have been released earlier., April 6, 2008
By 
William Lynd "lynd8" (Poestenkill, NY United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Walk the Line (Extended Cut) (DVD)
Even if you are not a die-hard fan of Johnny Cash, you will likely enjoy this movie. His life truly warranted a big screen treatment! The music is terrific and Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon give spellbinding performances. This really is a 5 star movie but I am deducting one star as 20th Century Fox is basically performing a bit of a "gouging" of the customer here, because anyone that enjoyed this DVD enough to own it probably bought it last year in one of the earlier formats. Funny enough, upon the initial DVD release, there were two versions - the basic, and a "collectors" version with all the great extras. Now, only one year later the "collectors" version is made useless with this new "extended cut" but has many of the same extras. This should have been released last year.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant. Absolutely brilliant., June 20, 2006
In New Zealand, this was on for about two months at the main cinemas. After that, it was on for AT LEAST another month at the small-town cinemas. This is one of the most fantastic films you have ever see, I guarantee that. It only came out of the small cinemas when it came out on VHS/DVD.

It is a true story of success, fame, drugs, heartbreak and unhappiness - and about getting back on track. It is the story of the great Johnny Cash's life.

Mum (who is a big fan of Johnny Cash) dragged me off to town to see it and I must say I loved it.

It is very well done, and Phoenix and Witherspoon have good voices. I recommend it to all ages, though I don't think anyone under ten should be seeing it, as there is a lot of drugs in it.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No regrets..., February 19, 2006
It could be said that "Walk the line" is a movie about the life of Johnny Cash, a very well-known American artist that overcame all kinds of difficulties to become famous and share his music with the public. However, it would be more accurate to point out that this film is centered both on Johnny Cash (Joaquin Phoenix) and June Carter (Reese Witherspoon), and the love they had for each other.

The opening sequence is wonderful, and will make you realize that you weren`t wrong in choosing to watch "Walk the line". That feeling is likely to be specially strong if, like me, you don't really know a lot about Johnny Cash, and just want to watch a good and entertaining film. Notwithstanding that, you will also end up learning quite a few things about one of the most important American musicians of all time, and about a period in which many conventions were being broken by new artists.

This film tells the spectator about Johnny Cash's childhood and his bad relationship with his father (played by Robert Patrick), his time in the Air Force, and the beginnings of his music career, when he met people like Jerry Lee Lewis (Waylon Malloy Payne), Elvis (Tyler Hilton), and the love of his life, singer June Carter. There was a big problem though: Cash was already married to another woman, Vivian (Ginnifer Goodwin), something that June didn't forget, and repeated to Johnny every time she rejected his attempts to go beyond a friendship.

The scenes where Johnny struggles with his addiction to drugs and with depression are quite difficult to watch, probably due to the fact that Joaquin Phoenix delivers a splendid performance. Reese Witherspoon is also outstandingly good as June, the person that saves Johnny Cash from himself.

All the same, I want to mention that "Walk the line" is not all about drama. There are funny moments too, and also some wonderful scenes recreating Johnny's concerts that allow you to listen to the real deal. Oh well, maybe not the real deal, because Phoenix and Witherspoon did their own singing, but their version of those concerts is an extremely good one. I am seriously thinking about buying not only a cd with Cash's more important songs, but also another with the soundtrack of this movie. Listening to Phoenix singing "Folsom Prison Blues" is no hardship!

On the whole, I cannot recommend this movie strongly enough. It is not perfect, but it is the kind of movie that you simply must see and enjoy. No regrets :)

Belen Alcat
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WOW!, February 28, 2006
By 
Melissa Niksic (Chicago, IL United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Walk the Line (Widescreen Edition) (DVD)
I had a feeling that I would really like "Walk the Line," but I had no idea that is was such an AMAZING film! I didn't know Joaquin Phoenix had it in him. He did an incredible job bringing Johnny Cash to life. The movie chronicles Cash's rise to fame, his severe drug problem, and his relationship with June Carter (Reese Witherspoon). Phoenix and Witherspoon are PHENOMENAL! It would not be possible for anyone to portray Johnny and June with more accuracy, and their singing is FABULOUS! This movie is such a wonderful tribute to Cash's life and music, and it's also a beautiful love story. (I completely teared up during the final concert scene at the end of the film...how romantic!) In addition to Phoenix and Witherspoon, the supporting cast boasts excellent performances by Ginnifer Goodwin as Cash's first wife, Vivian, and Robert Patrick as Johnny's father. Everything about this movie is perfect...I was sitting on the edge of my seat the entire time!

A lot of great movies were released last year, but "Walk the Line" was definitely one of the better ones...it is a MASSIVE OVERSIGHT that the film wasn't rewarded with a Best Picture nomination by the Academy Awards committee. Hopefully Phoenix and Witherspoon will walk away with the top honors, though...they definitely deserve it.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautifully-crafted film about the human spirit, February 18, 2006
By 
Frodo (Bag End, The Shire) - See all my reviews
"Hello. I'm Johnny Cash..."

Steller performances and a gripping adapted soundtrack make "Walk the Line" one of the best films I personally have seen in a long time.

Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon display radiant chemistry starring together as legendary country music icons Johnny Cash and June Carter. The story weaves inside the life and mind of musically-driven Cash who is swarmed into the spotlight with his "sharp like a razor" sound. But the torments the childhood loss of his brother, his breaking marriage, as well as misunderstandings with his father rapidly lead to a heavy addiction to drugs. June Carter (played by a magnificent Witherspoon) acts as a mentor and inspiration to Cash, as well as his soul mate for whom he is very much in love with.

There are several aspects of this film that I want to mention. I'll start with the opening credits. Wow, from the very first moment I have to say I was completely taken aback. It's difficult to explain to those who haven't seen it, but those who have, I'm sure you'll agree with me what an utterly stunning opening it was, with that infectious country beat contrasted with the confides of the prison. It was riveting, and immediately I knew this was going to be a wonderful film.

Jaoquin Phoenix was captivating as Cash, and I was impressed with the depth of similarities between him and his character. We all know of River Phoenix, Jaoquin's late brother who suddenly died of drug overdose in the early 90s. Then ofcourse was Joaquin's own battle with substance and drug abuse. Whether he meant these details to impact or not, Joaquin's performance is so honest and raw, one MUST draw the parallels. But alone the performance is inspired and he well deserved the Golden Globe.

Reese Witherspoon is as you've never seen her (ie Brunette!) as June Carter, and she's marvellous. I could really relate and connect with her character. As mentioned earlier, the on-screen chemistry between Phoenix and Witherspoon was so strong and poignant. I could really sense the connection.

Last but certainly not least is the music, which acts as the third character in this bio-epic. Phoenix and Witherspoon as you know put their own singing skills to the test here, and the result is amazing! I will be the first to admit country music is CERTAINLY not my thing, but even I found Cash's melodies and the actors' impression of them captivating. My views on country music were definately changed after this film. So if you are, like me, not a fan of country music, this film will certainly be an exception to that.

"Walk the Line" exceeded all my expectations and was a truly insightful, inspiring and moving love story. Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon light up the silver screen and put in the finest performances so far in their careers. It's a film about self acceptance and companionship, that will certainly move you and make you think twice about country music. From it's thrilling beginning to it's heartwarming end, "Walk the Line" is a wonderful film!
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Walk the Line (Widescreen Edition)
Walk the Line (Widescreen Edition) by James Mangold (DVD - 2006)
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