Slings & Arrows: The Complete Collection [Blu-ray]
Blu-ray | Box Set
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"Outrageously entertaining" --NPR
Winner of 13 Gemini Awards and showered with critical acclaim, this darkly comic Canadian series follows the fortunes of a dysfunctional Shakespearean theatre troupe, exposing the high drama, scorching battles, and electrifying thrills that happen behind the scenes.
Paul Gross (Due South) stars as Geoffrey Tennant, the passionate but unstable artistic director of the New Burbage Theatre Festival. Haunted by the ghost of his predecessor (Stephen Ouimette), he struggles to realize his creative vision while handling touchy actors, a jittery general manager (Mark McKinney), a pretentious guest director (Don McKellar), and his own tempestuous romance with the festival’s leading lady (Martha Burns). The backstage bedlam mirrors the onstage angst as Geoffrey directs three of Shakespeare’s masterpieces--Hamlet, Macbeth, and King Lear--one in each season. Guest stars include Rachel McAdams (The Notebook), Colm Feore (Chicago), Sarah Polley (Go, The Sweet Hereafter), and renowned Stratford Festival actor William Hutt in one of his last performances.
"A winner: funny, touching" -- E! Online
"Achieves perfect pitch with its mix of dark wit and drama" -- The Washington Post
"One of my all-time favorite television series. Filled with irreverent, hilarious dialogue and heart-felt performances" -- TVGuide.com
"Sophisticated and cutting yet sincere...A" -- TIME Magazine
4 of 5 stars. -- Fort Worth Star-Telegram, July 2007
An exceptionally well crafted, beautifully nuanced and wonderfully smart series. -- San Francisco Chronicle
Backstage masterpiece this one-in-a-million TV show. -- The Phoenix, July 2007
Charming and complex and lovely. -- The New York Times
EW Pick...A -- Entertainment Weekly
Funny, tragic and exhilarating, "Slings" memorably celebrates the nobility of human dreams and the intoxicating impact of live theater. --Newsday, July 2007
cast and crew interviews;
deleted and extended scenes;
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Top customer reviews
It definitely made me want to go back and read all those famous plays strategically ducked in high school. Better yet, to see them performed. The series writing is extraordinary, the humor better than engaging, and the ensemble casts headed by Paul Gross ["Geoffrey Tennant", Artistic Director, who's burdened by the ghost of his predecessor] and Martha Burns ["Ellen", Leading Lady who's burdened by Geoffrey, as well as her own foibles] are simply the best! I've watched all three seasons countless times, gaining insight as to why I never became an actress. Risking the cliché: You don't have to be totally crazy to act, [or direct, or write] but it must certainly help. Slings and Arrows is crazy, literate, humorous, and extremely enjoyable.
The only new extras (from the single seasons to this collection) are on the bonus disc, which I wouldn't have a problem with if there was anything substantial. The "A Look Behind the Scenes" Featurette includes a LOT of footage from the three (short) interviews and the (also short) "on the set sections". It implies on the box that there is over an hour of bonus material, but there is so much repeated footage that it feels like far less.
The trailers, interviews, deleted and extended scenes, and bloopers on the season discs are nice. And I have to say that I appreciated not having to sit through endless ads and company logos before the menu will load; it simply shows the copyright warning and the Acorn logo. I really would have loved episode commentaries (I understand there is one commentary on the Blu-Ray), and I missed having subtitles (really now, who doesn't include subtitles these days?)
Bottom line: If you own the individual seasons you aren't missing anything by not having the bonus disc.