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Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1969)

4.5 out of 5 stars 209 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1969)

Peter O'Toole and Petula Clark star in a musical adaptation of the classic 1939 Academy Award-winning, heartwarming film about the love between a shy teacher and his outgoing wife. Although singing star Katherine Chipping (Clark) dies far too young, her love inspires Arthur Chipping (O'Toole) to become an exceptional teacher and schoolmaster in this story of honor, manners and the joy of a live lived in the service of others.

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Special Features

  • Trailers for the 1935 and 1969 films

Product Details

  • Actors: Peter O'Toole, Petula Clark, Michael Redgrave, Alison Leggatt, Siân Phillips
  • Directors: Herbert Ross
  • Writers: Terence Rattigan
  • Producers: Arthur P. Jacobs
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Original recording remastered, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: Japanese (Dolby Digital 1.0), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French, Japanese, Thai
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.20:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    G
    General Audience
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: January 27, 2009
  • Run Time: 151 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (209 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005JO3W
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #14,458 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1969)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: VHS Tape
Peter O'Toole and Petula Clark shine in this vastly underrated 1969 musical adaptation of James Hilton's classic novel. Beautifully directed by Herbert Ross, this film deserves to be restored to its 70MM / 6 track stereophonic glory and released in theaters and on widescreen DVD.

This is a heart-warming film for the entire family. Some would argue the acting isn't great, O'Toole can't sing and Robert Donat was better in the 1939 original. They miss the point. This film has a soul. It has grace, charm, warmth, music and is in a class of its own. I didn't expect to like this film and its songs -- but I do. Leslie Bricusse and John Williams won the Oscar for Best Music, Score of a Musical Picture (Original or Adaptation) and picked up the Golden Globe as well. O'Toole was nominated for, but did not win, the Oscar that year. However he did win the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture Actor - Musical/Comedy and the NBR Best Actor Award for this film. And Petula Clark sings beautifully!

Please, whoever holds the film rights (MGM or Warner), give us O'Toole and Clark in this wonderful, heart-warming film, both on DVD and CD. Delightful film. Highly recommended!

January 27, 2009 UPDATE:
See: ASIN: B00005JO3W. The restored film was released on DVD in its original widescreen format and 5.1 surround sound. Yes!
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"Goodbye, Mr. Chips" was a huge surprise to me when I first saw it in 1969. I had read the reviews (but most critics panned musicals no matter how much they really enjoyed them). I hadn't read anything that credited the tremendous quality lavished on every component of the film. Peter O'Toole, whose performance was singled out by most critics, is startlingly wonderful as the shy, yet intensely interesting Mr. Chippings. Petula Clark is totally luminous as Katherine. It was a wonderful follow-up role to her stunning debut in "Finian's Rainbow". We are most unfortunate that we never got more of her musical talents on film.

The music is stunning. You just don't hear music arranged/orchestrated like this any more. Most of the lyrics are simplistic, and often quite funny, but I think they all are endearing and enduring. I have friends who love this film as much as I. Whenever one of us is ready for another look (via the widescreen MGM laserdisc...not YET available on DVD, drat it!) we usually let the others know by quoting the lyrics to "London is London" (can there be any doubt about it?).

This film stands up much better than most film musicals of the era. For sheer entertainment value and an emotional wallop, it's nearly in a class by itself. O'Toole's then-wife, Sian Phillips, has one of the most delicious turns in film musical history as a man-mad (and man-eating) vamp.

Anyone who loves musicals will find this among the best they've ever seen.

John Williams adapted and conducted the score. Songs were written by Leslie Bricusse. Williams' adaptation efforts were to take Bricusse's songs and create an underscore that seamlessly blended with the songs and action on the film. He accomplished this with a brilliance we have since become accustomed to. For his magnificent efforts, Williams was nominated for the 1969 Best Scoring (adaptation) Oscar but did NOT win (Lennie Hayton and Lionel Newman won for "Hello, Dolly!"
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With all the films going on DVD, there is no reason why this musical version of "Goodbye, Mr. Chips" should be released immediately. There has never been a more sensitive, completely vulnerable performance than that of Peter O'Toole--with a devastating long close-up shot as he says goodbye to his school as he retires. And, I'm sorry, but Petula Clark has just the right theatricality for her role as a West End musical comedy star. Her performance rings much truer than Julie Andrews pale rendering of Gertrude Lawrence in "Star." Finally there's the score which is the epitome of a movie musical score, with "Walk Through the World With Me", "You and I", "What a Bunch of Flowers" and "London" as great examples of cinematic musical numbers. There's even an added treat in the comic turn of Siann Phillips as Tallulah Bankhead wanna be Ursula. How many five star reviews does it take to get MGM to put this "Goodbye, Mr. Chips" on DVD?
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It has always been a mystery to me as to the reasons behind the fashionable distaste for the musical version of "Goodbye, Mr. Chips." I've never been able to solve the mystery, but it is merely fashionability. The score is one of the most beautiful ever written -- I've listened to it across the span of my entire life from the time it was released in 1969 and have yet to find it anything but extraordinary. The film is a moving depiction of what love is really about and never fails to move me. The performances by both Peter O'Toole (why has Hollywood thought it useful to cheat this great actor of his due with a "real" Oscar -- sheer jealousy?) and Petula Clark are extraordinary. Yet, a strange, and, to me, bizarre cult of disparagement has risen about this film. Don't be fooled by fools who wish to belittle real talent. This is one of the all-time great musicals. Don't miss it.
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Format: VHS Tape
When this musical was released, critics unfairly blasted this film and blamed it for being one of the big budget film musicals that put an end to the production of film musicals. This shows you how wrong critics can be. Most people who watch this film today ADORE this movie! I certainly do. It is one of my favorite musicals. It is blessed with wonderful performances by Peter O'Toole and the fabulous Petula Clark, who is soulful and winning . It has a beautiful score of lovely songs (O'Toole does his own singing and Petula Clark's voice is sheer perfection). The photography for this movie is beautiful. Best of all, this is a movie about love, about its ability to transform individuals and provide happiness. This is a great movie, many times better than the non-musical version made by MGM in 1939. Beware: some prints of this film shown on television are shortened by about 30 minutes (they edited out many of the songs). Try to catch the full length version because the songs and music are an important facet of this film's appeal and greatness.
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