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Saving Private Ryan (Two-Disc Special Edition)

4.3 out of 5 stars 201 customer reviews

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
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(May 25, 2004)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Edward Burns. An explosive WWII drama in which Private James Ryan becomes the object of a desperate and dangerous rescue mission in war-torn Germany after authorities learn his three other brothers already have been killed in combat. 2 DVDs. 1999/color/169 min/R/widescreen.

Additional Features

In many ways, the extras from this 2004 version could have been included in the initial 1999 DVD release. Laurent Bouzeraeu, the usual director of Spielberg DVD features, smoothly creates several segments on the making of the film, a refreshing change after Spielberg's other lauded World War II DVD, Schindler's List, did not give fans anything on the film's craft. About 90 minutes of new material is here, showing how the famous D-Day invasion was created, the historical facts of the story, and how the actors were trained through an abbreviated "basic training." There are plenty of interview snippets with Spielberg and his cast, but all of them were shot on the film's set; there is no years-later retrospection about the film. Only a new interview, with Oscar-winning sound designer Gary Rydstrom, puts the film in perspective--and hails the arrival of DVD. The same excellent DVD presentation of the film is on this new set; however, a DTS soundtrack can only be found on the World War II Collection. --Doug Thomas

Special Features

  • An Introduction By Steven Spielberg
  • Looking In To The Past: The Research, the Screenplay and the Vision
  • The Making of the Platoon
  • Boot Camp for the Cast
  • Re-creating D-Day: Omaha Beach
  • Music And Sound
  • Parting Words and more

Product Details

  • Actors: Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Tom Sizemore, Edward Burns, Barry Pepper
  • Directors: Steven Spielberg
  • Writers: Robert Rodat
  • Producers: Allison Lyon Segan, Bonnie Curtis, Gary Levinsohn, Ian Bryce, Kevin De La Noy
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Special Edition, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated:
  • Studio: Dreamworks Video
  • DVD Release Date: May 25, 2004
  • Run Time: 169 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (201 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001NBLVI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,702 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Saving Private Ryan (Two-Disc Special Edition)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I was completely blown away by "Saving Private Ryan." Spielberg, who (with the exception of "Schindler's List") only made warm entertainment before this, went against his usual ethics with this war film. And he succeeded.

"Saving Private Ryan," is without question one of the finest war movies ever made--possibly one of the finest movies ever. You don't really watch this film; you experience war, first-hand. The much-talked about scene, the Allied assault on Omaha Beach, is indeed extraordinarily brutal scene to watch, yet it is also mesmerizing at the same time.

The film follows a squad of U.S. soldiers on their PR mission to rescue Private James Ryan (Matt Damon), whose three brothers were all killed in combat. The squad is led by (Tom Hanks), a soldier's soldier, but all around a pretty good guy. The squad is portrayed by such actors as Edward Burns, Adam Goldberg, Barry Pepper, Vin Diesel, Giovanni Ribisi, and Jeremy Davies in a superb role as the terrified translator.

The acting is very good all around. Hanks received an Oscar nomination, but the rest of the cast is excellent, most notably Davies and Edward Burns.

I was shocked that "Saving Private Ryan" didn't win Best Picture. It was one of the Academy's most shamefull moments. Luckily, Spielberg won for Best Director. It also won for Cinematography, which was basically all hand-held during the battle scenes. This worked wonders; it almost looked as though I was watching a documentary. The violence is extremely difficult to watch, but it worked for the film. Usually I have a problem with over-the-top violence ("Cliffhanger," anyone?), but I didn't mind it here. Spielberg was trying to make a point about war, and he definitely pulled it off, and then some. The film runs at nearly three hours, and yet I was completely fascinated the entire time. That is indeed a rare thing. I strongly recommend "Saving Private Ryan."
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I will never forgive the academy for choosing 'Shakespeare in Love' over 'Saving Private Ryan' for best picture. As often happens, I loaned an older version of this movie to a friend, forgot, and bought another copy, because this film had to be in the collection. My disclaimer here is that I was never a combat soldier or a soldier in the US army. So please consider their opinion ahead of mine. This is no glamour war film, it's gritty, violent, uplifting, disgusting, heroic, and emotionally draining. This is a must see epic.
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By wiser consumer on September 12, 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
My military experience was limited. I joined the Army Reserve in 1956 right out of high school just to satisfy my draft obligation, went to Fort Leonard Wood, MO for six months of training, then did three and a half years of one-night-a-week meetings plus two weeks of summer camp once a year. So I'm no battle-hardened veteran.
But in this film, when I heard the German machine guns open up on the GIs coming into Omaha Beach, I thought, "That's the first time I've heard the actual sound of machine guns firing since my days in Leonard Wood." This film is probably as close to the real thing as you're apt to find. It makes the old John Wayne film "The Longest Day" and its depiction of that landing look like a Sunday stroll in the park.
Normally I avoid films that're violent, figuring they arouse human passions best left dormant. But I've added this film to my library because it's an accurate portrayal of just how stupid and cruel we can be to one another. And to what purpose -- I want your stuff and you want mine? It's like two-year-olds fighting over the same toy, but then two seconds later the winner could care less about that toy and is off to the next. We are a ridiculous and heinous species, the scourge of our planet, and this film does a very good job of showing it.
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Saving Private Ryan is one of my favorite movies to watch around Memorial Day and Veterans Day, as I think it's the best movie that makes me understand the value of sacrifice and brotherhood between members of the Armed Forces in times of war. On D-Day, Captain John Miller (Tom Hanks) is assigned, with a small platoon unit, to rescue Private James Ryan (Matt Damon) and bring him home safe and sound. Throughout this quest, the characters have to face the evil Nazi soldiers, concluding in an epic fight at the end of the movie.

This special edition, published for the 60th anniversary commemoration of D-Day, comes with 2 discs. The first disc includes the movie and its theatrical trailer. The second disc presents new materials made especially for this edition, including:
- An inside look with the filmmakers
- Looking into the past: the research, the screenplay and the vision
- The making of a platoon
- Boot camp for the cast
- Re-creating D-Day: Omaha Beach

All these new features are included only in this special edition. The disc also includes the other features previously released in the regular DVD edition. The box is made to look like a small vault, and inside it are included the official letter written by Dwight Eisenhower that was given to every soldier before they left for Omaha Beach, along with historic pictures and other accessories used by American soldiers. So if you're looking for a collector's edition of this movie, you should definitely go with this one!
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