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36 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Timeless film still being honored...and deservedly so, June 6, 2003
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This review is from: To Kill a Mockingbird (Collector's Edition) (DVD)
In a twist of time and fate I was viewing 'To Kill A Mockingbird' on DVD when AFI released their choice of Gregory Peck's portrayal of Lee Harper's character Atticus Finch, the Southern lawyer who defends a black man unjustly accused of rape, as Hollywood's all-time movie hero. No character in film history has more deserved to be designated as the best 'good guy'. Peck garnered a well-deserved Oscar for his role as a man of understated wisdom and quiet courage and the quintessential father-figure all men should aspire to be and all children long for in their lives. The fact that this film, it's participants, and the basic story are still being honored after 40+ years is a testament to the solid message if offered and the effective manner in which it was presented.
I read this Pulitzer Prize novel when it was published and saw the film upon its theatrical release. The memory of both have long lingered. Enough can't be said about the wisdom of Universal's decision to release this Collector's Edition DVD. The public owes them a monumental 'thank-you'. Interviews with Gregory Peck and commentary by director Robert Mulligan and producer Alan J. Pakula make us privy to their precious memories surrounding how the charming novel was transformed into the perfect film. Seeing Mary Badham (Scout) and Philip Alford (Jem) (non-professional southern children starring in an Oscar-nominated film) as adults offering insights into their unique experiences was an unbelievable treat. To watch Robert Duvall make his screen debut as 'Boo Radley', and what a debut that was; and to hear his comments nearly a half-century later proves as never before the value of the DVD format and special features.
Watching this film upon its release it was inconceivable that we could one day far in the future hear and see the inside story of its making in the comfort of our homes and from the mouths of the individuals so instrumental in the process of creating a legend.
This DVD is priceless. The details of the making of this time-honored film have now been documented forever in a piece of movie-history that deserves to be savored by any true movie-buff as well as by a generation not yet born at the time of it's release. The message and the method of communicating it are timeless and dear. Please do yourself the honor of viewing this film.
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