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To Be Or Not To Be [Region B]

4.5 out of 5 stars 164 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Australia released, Blu-Ray/Region B : it WILL NOT play on regular DVD player, or on standard US Blu-Ray player. You need multi-region Blu-Ray player to view it in USA/Canada: LANGUAGES: English ( Dolby Digital 5.1 ), English ( DTS-HD Master Audio ), WIDESCREEN (1.85:1), SPECIAL FEATURES: Interactive Menu, Scene Access, SYNOPSIS: A bad polish actor is just trying to make a living when what should intrude but World War II in the form of an invasion. His wife has the habit of entertaining young polish officers while he's on stage which is also a source of depression to him. When one of her officers comes back on a Secret Mission, the actor takes charge and comes up with a plan for them to escape.
SCREENED/AWARDED AT: Golden Globes, Oscar Academy Awards, ...To Be Or Not To Be (1983)

Product Details

  • Actors: Mel Brooks, Anne Bancroft, Tim Matheson, Charles Durning, Christopher Lloyd
  • Directors: Alan Johnson
  • Producers: To Be Or Not To Be (1983)
  • Format: Import, Blu-ray, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0)
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Unrated
    Not Rated
  • Run Time: 107.00 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (164 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B006NOC16S
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #313,137 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Dom Miliano VINE VOICE on December 26, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
When I see the name Mel Brooks on a film title, I think bawdy gags, double-entendres and a bathroom-humor punchline. (But that's me!) This movie was a pleasant change from the usual Brooks offerings with crisp dramatic direction, a good dramatic cast (Ann Bancroft was perfect as the wife with a wandering eye) and a bitter sweet plot. Watching Mel Brooks interact with some accomplished actors, you realize the depth of his talent - he holds his own very well and has a strong screen presence. Although this is a remake of a wonderful 1942 Jack Benny film, Brooks does a great job updating the script for today's audiences. It's not Young Frankenstein or even High Anxiety but it is a nice little movie that any Brooks fan will thoroughly enjoy. As an aside, I think Mel must lay awake at night thinking of ways to poke fun at Nazis in general and Hitler in particular (think Producers, Blazing Saddles...). He does it so well, I hope he never stops.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
This is, for me, the best of the Brooks films. How often does one enjoy a re-make as well as the original? Jack Benny and Carol Lombard are wonderful in the 1942 original, a must-see, but I love this version just as much - José Ferrer steals the show along with a host of great modern character actors. This is a more refined, less raw Mel Brooks comedy, with a wonderful homage to the original. Charles Durning is fabulous as well as the entire well-cast cast. I have been patiently waiting to replace my VHS with a DVD version. Hello? How much longer do I have to wait?
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Format: VHS Tape
Mel Brooks' remake of TO BE OR NOT TO BE doesn't improve on the Ernst Lubitsch classic, but it's a very enjoyable film in it's own right. Perhaps wisely, the script follows the 1942 original very closely, but the comedy is broader this time and the thriller aspect lessened.Brooks and Anne Bancroft play stars of a Warsaw theatrical troupe in 1939 (A highlight is their duet of "Sweet Georgia Brown," sung in Polish). When Bancroft discovers she is the object of a pilot's affections, it begins a chain of events that has the troupe working to save the underground movement after Hitler invades Poland.Brooks gives one of his very best performances as an actor who uses his skills to outwit the Nazis, while worrying whether or not his wife is having an affair. Bancroft matches him every step of the way, and comes closer than anyone in the cast to achieving "the Lubitsch touch." Charles Durning is also a standout as the notorious "Concentration Camp Ehrhardt."While this film is well worth watching, I also STRONGLY recommend the original Lombard-Benny classic, if you've never seen it. But you won't hear Jack Benny and Carole Lombard sing "Sweet Georgia Brown" in Polish!
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Format: DVD
My children, now ages 12 and 9, have loved this film for the last six years, since the day we allowed them to watch it. The Nazis are not the bumbling dimwits of "Hogan's Heroes," but they are not quite as smart as Mel Brooks's Fredric Bronski. The characters are enjoyable and ultimately lovable: Brooks as the self-absorbed and not-quite-successful head of a rag-tag Polish vaudeville troupe; Anne Bancroft as his aging but flirtatious (and much better received) performing wife, and a wonderful ensemble cast to support each other. There is adventure, excitement, subtle and highbrow comedy, and as one might expect from Mel Brooks, victory over the Nazis. The theatre troupe is ultimately successful in its mission to stop a traitorous Polish spy, but when Brooks disguises himself as the spy to complete the mission, the movie really takes off. There is some sexual innuendo, as well as some slang references to homosexuals, so parents: be cautious. But as an introduction to Brooks, as a glimpse into the Nazi preoccupation with the conquering of Europe and the Final Solution, it is a winner.
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By A Customer on March 26, 2001
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
I personally thought that this movie was hillarious. The first time i saw it i couldn't stop laughing. Yes, it's true that it's not the best Brooks film but i thought it was a great change from watching most of his recent movies. The little things in the movie crack me up, like when the Col. keeps falling off the desk. That's just classic Brooks. Brooks is one of my favorite actor/directors and i think that it might not match up to Space Balls, Young Frankenstein, and others, but, i still think it's a great movie and very entertaining.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
This film is a combination of laughter and good drama. We need more artists like these who can see the good - even in the midst of difficulty. I've been looking all over town for this movie, and I would heartily recommend it. If you're not a Mel Brooks fan, this is a different kind of comedy than he usually does - and with spectacular results.
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Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
I'm not a Mel Brooks fan. This movie, To Be Or Not To Be, does not alter my view that Brooks' comical skills are vastly overrated. There is a fine line between a funny spoof and plain silliness. Brooks' method typically lands the scenes in the second category. There were very few occasions where the goings on made me crack a smile, and a lot more where I just groaned. The busload of famous stars making an appearance did not manage to save the show. If anything, the virus of bad acting that plagues Brooks seems to have spread to many of the celebrities as well.
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