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Ziggy Stardust: The Motion Picture (1973)

David Bowie , Mick Ronson , D.A. Pennebaker  |  PG |  DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (88 customer reviews)


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Product Details

  • Actors: David Bowie, Mick Ronson, Trevor Bolder, Mick Woodmansy, Angela Bowie
  • Directors: D.A. Pennebaker
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Original recording remastered
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Parlophone
  • DVD Release Date: May 6, 2003
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (88 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00008YLUX
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #159,319 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Ziggy Stardust: The Motion Picture" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

The digitally remastered glam-rock classic features David Bowie as his gender-bending alter-ego Ziggy Stardust, in his final performance given at London’s Hammersmith Odeon in 1973.

Product Description

The digitally remastered glam-rock classic features David Bowie as his gender-bending alter-ego Ziggy Stardust, in his final performance given at London’s Hammersmith Odeon in 1973.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
115 of 115 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "This is the last show we'll ever do." July 12, 2002
By B-MAN
Format:DVD
This 1973 concert film directed by D.A. Pennebaker (Monterey Pop, Jimi Plays Monterey, Depeche Mode 101, etc.) documenting the final show of Ziggy Stardust (David Bowie) & the Spiders from Mars (Mick Ronson, Trevor Bolder, & Mick "Woody" Woodmansey)provides a rare glimpse into Bowie's glam rock period. It is a loud & flashy assault on the senses that is experienced through both "sound" & "vision". Film footage mostly consists of the performance, but also included are back stage scenes of Bowie changing from one costume to another.
Songs performed:
1) Hang on to yourself
2) Ziggy Stardust
3) Watch that man
4) Medley: Wild eyed boy from Freecloud/All the young dudes/Oh you pretty things
5) Moonage Daydream
6) Changes
7) Space Oddity
8) My death
9) Crack'd Actor
10) Time
11) Width of a circle
12) Let's spend the night together
13) Suffragette City
14) White light/white heat
15) Rock & Roll Suicide
Leonard Maltin dismisses this film as "practically unwatchable and unlistenable" which would only be true for people who either dislike Bowie or the style of music. Yes, the music is sometimes loud, the focus is blurry here & there, and the strobe lights go crazy, but this is a David Bowie rock concert from the 1970s, isnt that appropriate? Anyone who is interested in either David Bowie or the glam rock era of the 1970s will find this film essential. For one, it is the only film document of David Bowie's Ziggy/glam phase and for another it is the "last concert" with "the Spiders" including Mick Ronson, who was a part of Bowie's band since the 1969 album "Space Oddity" up until '73's "Pin Ups". Bowie would, by 1974, have a new back up band, as well as a new look. This film deserves preservation on DVD as the historical document that it is.
*Look quickly for Ringo Starr talking with Bowie backstage
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47 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CLASSIC May 1, 2003
Format:DVD
Some reviewers here have complained that this (the DVD version) looks and sounds like trash. But since I like Bowie I bought it anyhow, expecting something no better than a bootleg. Well, I've seen plenty of bootlegs and this is nowhere near that poor. In fact, it's AMAZING. Yes, the sound quality isn't the best, but it's perfectly listenable. And, yes, the camerawork is a bit spasmodic and grainy, but that only adds to the gritty mood. Glam rock is SUPPOSED to be a bit trashy. If you want sleek, overproduced Bowie, then look elsewhere. But if you want Bowie at his best, then you can't miss this one. Watching this concert film you enter a ZONE and don't leave it till the end. This is Bowie at his best. Every now and then, Bowie flashes a killer smile, and that's because he knows he's onto something good. The music is some of the best rock ever recorded. The atmosphere is electric. Throughout the concert, Bowie is in THE ZONE, the audience is in THE ZONE -- and, if you don't expect polished concert footage, you will be, too.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic footage, great concert, but technically poor February 23, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
It's 1973, in Hammersmith, London. Platformed teenagers in bell bottoms with blue hair and moons painted on their faces gather in civilised lines outside the converted cinema for what was a truly great concert. Although glam rock was far from the only teen movement in London at the time, this film makes it seem the most important. The first section of the film, and that with the clearest images, focuses on the fans outside the Hammersmith Odeon and Ziggy in the dressing room. Once the Spiders from Mars and Ziggy arrive on stage the atmosphere is electric. Some might miss the stereo of modern recordings, but the inferior sound quality somehow adds to the drama of the moment... for those who are eager to witness such a concert. Then there are the theatrics of Ziggy on stage - something never since emulated to the same degree. The concert is a seminal event both for Bowie's development as a performer, for glam rock (and then punk) as a movement, and for today's fans who only wish they had been there. If you have invested in a DVD player, then this film should definitely not be your first purchase. As other reviews testify, the picture and sound quality is poor; but then there are modern Bowie concerts with higher production values available. If you are keen to see what Ziggy was really like, however, it is well worth the money. Listen to the albums on your CD player, watch the modern concerts on your DVD player and watch this for the sheer spectacle. If you love Bowie and crave a closer view of his most acclaimed period, this is invaluable.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I saw Bowie during this tour. IT WAS MAGNIFICENT! November 10, 1999
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
This tape is the only record of Bowie with the Spiders from Mars. It is the next best thing to being there in spite of its unpolished state. There are some sound problems during the first two songs, and it looks more like a home movie than a concert tape. Still, for those of us who weren't there--and for those of us who were--it is a real treat! Bowie, though constantly changing and ever innovative, has never again quite captured the energy and charisma or the raw, edgy, yet refined perfection that he had while with the Spiders. Enjoy!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The FabMOST! February 5, 2005
By CC
Format:DVD
I was knocked out of my socks when I first watched this film - and the thrill is hardly less whenever I watch it again. If David Bowie/Ziggy Stardust don't rub you the right way, you'll hate this movie, but if they're in your bag it should be a real treat.

David/Ziggy is singing with the full force of his voice throughout, which you don't get to experience on the ZS album, making these versions of the songs some of my favourites. The filming style is absolutely perfect as well: stark-raving bright blocks of colour on pitch black, with a sort of rough, glittery feel. Gives it an air of fantasy and urgency that you wouldn't get with regular filming. Mick Ronson is a wonderful part of the film, completing the sound with his amazing guitar playing and complementing Ziggy visually. David/Zig is at his sexiest and most teasing here, and the costumes he uses have only been beat by the ones he wore in the 1980 Floor Show.

It is gorgeous, glittering, sex-in-a-back-alley Rock and Roll! Buy it!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Lousy film of what must have been a terrific concert
My title sums up my views. This was clearly a superb show (who cares that the piano and guitar weren't in tune with each other when Bowie is at his best?). Read more
Published 3 months ago by Albert S. Copersino
4.0 out of 5 stars The 2003 remastered DVD is a major improvement
I owned the VHS tape and watched it many times. I agree that the original footage is of poor quality and should have been much better. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Fernando A.
3.0 out of 5 stars Ziggy Played Guitar
This was a gift so I never saw it so how can I review it? Heyyyyyy! Nice packaging! That's about it! Hope that helped!
Published 7 months ago by Bob Bower
5.0 out of 5 stars David
Bought for a friend who is a big fan of the director of this film. He also likes Bowie, but walking into his place you wouldn't here him play him at all!
Published 8 months ago by D. Ryan
5.0 out of 5 stars a must have for david bowie lovers
oh my word! i loved david bowie's music, but when i saw this on a tv channel, i knew i had to have it. it came in perfect condition and great music. Read more
Published 10 months ago by melissa harrison
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Have for 70s Bowie Fans!
Classic film that any 70s Bowie fan would love! Outstanding jams and solos by Mick Ronson, fantastic, classics songs from Ziggy Stardust, Space Oddity, The Man Who Sold the World,... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Vjs
1.0 out of 5 stars bowie great - filming terrible
This is very difficult to watch. Both the actual quality, and the editing/camera work are dreadful. I couldn't believe it when I heard on the commentary, that the director was... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Raymond Toms
4.0 out of 5 stars Mick Ronson is alive!!
A short (90-minute) DA Pennebaker movie about Bowie's final Ziggy Stardust concert in 1973, showing some backstage scenes (the first few minutes, and at two interludes; we get to... Read more
Published 15 months ago by Surferofromantica
5.0 out of 5 stars You just had to be there!
Have seen the complaints. People are so spoiled these days. Was a "Canadian student", come to London for the summer from school in Ireland. Read more
Published 16 months ago by W. T. Wilkinson
5.0 out of 5 stars Ziggy played guitar!
Awesome footage of an historic event! Opting to retire a character many others might have worn out over the long run, David Bowie shocked the world with his closing address:... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Gerald Draper
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Ziggy Stardust/Jeff Beck
Jeff Beck won't authorise it.
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