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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
63
Harold and Maude (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]
Format: Blu-ray|Change
Price:$27.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime


on November 7, 2017
"Harold and Maude" is a 1970's era gem that creeps right into your subconscious and never leaves and is one of the best, in and out, of its genre. Ruth Gordon, with delightful focus and subtle brilliance, treats the audience to her character "Maude", a spry, elderly woman who is forward thinking, worldly, intelligent, innovative and despite her advanced age, can seem to be much younger than her almost 80 years. Bud Cort, with controlled boyish charm and dry humor, creeps his character "Harold" into your subconscious and ends up, and you can never really know why, being a sort of reluctant, Gothic heartthrob. Regarding the age differences of the two title characters and their blossoming romance, there isn't the usual "forced acting" aspect that one might expect. The two seem well fit for this macabre pairing. Their odd chemistry keeps you eagerly rooting for their "May / December" relationship to work and last. "Harold and Maude" will appeal to a wide range of people and especially to those who love, offbeat movies from the 1960's and the 1970's. I love this movie and highly recommend it !
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on January 20, 2017
I've always loved this movie. Because it's from the 70's, the picture quality is not much better than the original, but glad to have on Blu-Ray.
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on August 4, 2013
Weren't the Seventies great? It isn't often that the stars align just right to create movie magic. Director Hal Ashby was coming off the critical success of "The Landlord". Colin Higgins would later write the Seventies Hitchcockian comic classics "Silver Streak" and "Foul Play". Bud Cort was coming off starring in Robert Altman's askewed dark comic classic "Brewster McCloud". Ruth Gordon was adding another character to her gallery of off-the-wall geriatrics. In order for "Harold and Maude" to succeed you have to believe in the central conceit of a twenty year old man with a death fixation mutually falling in love with an eighty year old free spirit otherwise it's a cynical exercise. These are not stereotypes but fully realized characters. One would have to note that Harold's staged suicides are probably more a cry for love than for attention. One would also have to notice the markings on Maude's arm probably the result of German atrocities. Not once do you disbelieve this relationship. Not in the performances of Cort and Gordon or in Ashby's direction or in the script. If you followed Ashby's career his films celebrate iconoclasm and he could be viewed as something of a maverick himself by making very personal films that through some act of God were green lighted by the studios. Good supporting turns by Vivian Pickles as Harold's frustrated mother, G. Wood, an Altman vet, as Harold's psychiatrist, Charles Tyner as Harold's militaristic uncle, Eric Christmas as a priest disgusted by Harold and Maude's relationship, and Judy Geer as an actress Harold's mother tries to fix him up with. I failed to mention the terrific song score offered by Cat Stevens which includes the beautiful "If You Want To Be Free, Be Free" as something of a signature theme for the two lovers. Oddly, at the time of the film's release they didn't issue a soundtrack album. It's only available on an out-of-print vinyl issue that came out some years after the film's release which also includes Gordon's version of the aforementioned song and the price is quite steep for even a second hand copy. Is it no wonder that a film that flopped both critically and commercially at the time of initial release has endeared itself to audiences forty years later? I last saw this film when I was sixteen on a double feature with "The King of Hearts" which is currently discontinued on DVD. Are you listening, Criterion? I didn't appreciate the subtleties of the film at the time because of my youth and my inexperience in the ways of love but thirty-four years on I am touched by its resonance and poignancy.
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on March 23, 2015
The Cat Stevens soundtrack is still great and it's an excellent transfer, rich colors. It has a number of extras worth seeing.
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on September 1, 2015
It is a very good film about freedom to be what you are.
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on February 11, 2015
One of my favorite movies. This one is a great version... I had seen it many times before, but could see the background of the scenes SO much better, there was so much more to see!! GREAT QUALITY!!!!
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on January 29, 2016
One of my favorite movies of all time. Deep and insightful Ruth Gordon teaches the true meaning of life......just to LIVE.
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on July 12, 2015
I've loved this movie since I saw it for the first time at age 12. It is beautifully made, and still provides insights for me. Funny and touching.
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on September 25, 2017
a long time favorite, great job Criterion. Dark humor of the best kind with an optimistic filter over it all.
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on May 16, 2014
Over the past 30+ years, I have watched this movie at least 50 times. I waited to purchase a blue ray copy and I'm glad that I did. If you are over 50, you'll appreciate being transported back in time. Ruth Gordon is at her best playing the cantankerous Maude.
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