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The Moon Spinners (The Hayley Mills Collection, Vol. 4)

4.3 out of 5 stars 280 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Hayley Mills, Eli Wallach, Peter McEnery, Pola Negri, Joan Greenwood
  • Directors: James Neilson
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, HiFi Sound, Digital Sound
  • Language: English
  • Rated:
    G
    General Audience
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Walt Disney Home Video
  • VHS Release Date: March 3, 1998
  • Run Time: 119 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (280 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 0788806734
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #76,736 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Start with a fortune in stolen jewels. Add a dash of danger. A pinch of romance. Season with Hitchcock-like intrigue and comic flair. What do you have? A mystery thriller for the whole family ... with the Disney touch. Set against the sun-bleached beauty of the Isle of Crete, the story pits a young English tourist (Hayley Mills) against a wily Greek jewel thief (Eli Wallach). Mistaken identities and perilous escapes -- including a nail-biting battle with a windmill -- lead the junior-miss detective to a final confrontation aboard the yacht of an eccentric millionairess (Pola Negri) with a passion for priceless gems and pet cheetahs!

Amazon.com

Hayley Mills was well on her way to adulthood when she found intrigue and chaste romance on the island of Crete in this 1964 Disney attempt at Hitchcock in one of his lighter moods. That means the principals do wind up in a hearse trapped on a narrow street by celebratory but ominous masked paraders. And that seemingly good guys can and do turn out to be bad guys and vice versa. But it's Disney and Mills, so there are no deaths in this mystery, although gunplay and some scariness do earn it a PG rating. Based on the Mary Stewart novel of the same name, this 118-minute film finds Mills and her aunt visiting a Cretan village on holiday. In the face of hostility from their innkeeper's brother (Eli Wallach), the pair befriend a fellow Brit. The young man's escapades with jewel thief Wallach draw a beguiled Mills into a sometimes perilous adventure involving a harrowing ride upon the sails of a windmill, hiding out in an underground crypt, and a showdown with a cheetah-loving millionairess (the scene-stealing Pola Negri) aboard her yacht. Probably a little too sophisticated for those under 8. --Kimberly Heinrichs

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This classic Walt Disney movie is very unique and fun mystery adventure, and I really enjoyed the unique setting on the beautiful Island of Crete of the mid-1960's. Directed by James Neilson, produced by Bill Anderson. Released in theatres in 1964, it starred Hayley Mills, Eli Wallach, Joan Greenwood, and Peter McErney. It is the fast paced story of two tourists that accidently tangle with some murderous jewel thieves. Hayley plays Nikky, on vacation with her Aunt Frances in a small Greek fishing village. They stay at a remote sleepy little inn, and note that a dashing young man that Nikky is falling for from England suddenly dissappears. Romance, drama, mystery, action, and humor are in this film. The actors all work hard to make the film believable and do a great job. Pola Negri who had not made a film in 20 years was convinced to come out of retirement, and does a wonderful job as the treacherous Madame Habib. She lives on a yacht and has a cheetah on a leash for a pet. Young MCEnery went on to appear in "the Fighting Prince of Donegal" for Disney.

There is some good cultural stuff, the greek wedding dancers costumes were from a musuem, and the dancers were local professionals. Filming on location, Disney spent a fortune rebuilding the village that had been ravaged by WWII. They used 25,000 feet of lumber and 2,000 sheets of plywood. The story was taken from a book by Mary Stewart, suggested to become a movie by Mrs. Lillian Disney, but the finished film is pretty far from it's original story. Good mucical score by Ron Grainer, title song written by Terry Gilkyson.

It eventually aired on "the Wonderful World of Disney", in 1966, '67, and '82. It even aired in 1975 in conjunction with the "Saturday Night at the Movies with Disney" specials.
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Format: DVD
I have just acquired the new Disney DVD release of The Moonspinners. What is the matter with those people? Last year, they released three excellent, high quality DVD sets of The Swiss Family Robinson, Pollyanna and The Parent Trap. I can understand not producing two disks each time - there is only so much extraneous material available, but this new DVD is inexcusable. It looks like it's been recorded straight off a video tape - the quality is appalling; indeed, I have an old video that is superior in quality. And not to issue the film in it's original screen format (or both!) is just insulting. After all, one of the main attributes of DVD is that it can reproduce film quality for the TV screen, and it seems very silly of Disney not to take advantage of that. It seems to be impossible to contact Disney to express my disappointment, and if I could get a refund I would.....
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By A Customer on February 13, 2003
Format: DVD
For the life of me, I'll never understand Disney. Buying DVD's from them is worse than gambling. One time I get a beautiful widescreen version of "Pollyanna", "Swiss Family Robinson", and "The Parent Trap" and the next time I get this piece of garbage with a disgusting transfer in the hated full screen format. This is not the first time I've been fooled by Disney, but rest assured it will be the last. I should have known better after being burned in the past when I ordered "Castaway Cowboy" and "Blackbeard's Ghost". Both of those two also came dressed like this version of Moon-Spinners. Disney, I have ordered my LAST DVD from you until you get your act together.
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Format: DVD
Once again, Disney misses the mark with an inferior DVD release. Why do we crave seeing our favorite stars on DVD? Picture clarity, extra features, restored prints, optional commentary... none of which are evident on this poor release of a wonderful Hayley Mills film. Disney's inexplicable inconsistency becomes evident when poor efforts such as this one are compared to stellar, awe-inspired efforts such as "The Parent Trap" and "Pollyanna", multi-disk sets released with quality and features on par with Criterion Collection releases. I give up on buying Disney. Next time, I'm going to rent the DVD first. Why waste money on new Disney DVD's that are inferior in quality to the VHS versions I already have! Hey Disney, wake up!
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Format: DVD
This is so sad! When will the Disney people understand that it is NOT the young kids of today who want to buy this movie? The willing consumers for a film like "Moon Spinners" are those who were kids when this film opened in theatres. I'm one! And I want my fond memories to look they way they did then! Which means sharp, fresh, colorful, and in the correct aspect ratios! This DVD is colorful! The rest is lacking! As a matter of fact, this disc is an exact copy of the old laserdisc issue. The Disney folks have not lifted a finger to clean dirt or scratches from the earlier transfer. Very annoying, not to mention the tight and ugly framing we get when the widescreen original is ignored. This is not a "scope" film, but there are still quite a lot of picture information missing on the sides. That also explains the foggy look. I often get the impression that the Disney organization care about their consumer products. But then I watch DVD:s like this one, "The Absent Minded Professor" and several others, and completely loose my faith. We fans want ALL Disney films on DVD to look like theatrical screenings. If not, we will simply refuse to buy any more. Period!
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