The Sopranos: Season 1
|Additional DVD options||Edition||Discs||
|New from||Used from|
|Watch Instantly with||Per Episode||Buy Season|
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Sopranos, The: The Complete First Season (DVD)
On January 10th, 1999, America was introduced to two families that would make history: The Soprano family headed by Tony Soprano, and The Soprano "family" headed by ... Tony Soprano. ' 'Four Stars! The first gotta-watch, gotta love, Gotti-like TV series of 1999. Across the board it's an A-plus.' ' - The New York Post ' 'Achieves a fresh tone to match its irresistibly winning concept.' ' - The New York Times]]>
The Sopranos, writer-producer-director David Chase's extraordinary television series, is nominally an urban gangster drama, but its true impact strikes closer to home: Like 1999's other screen touchstone, American Beauty, the HBO series chronicles a dysfunctional, suburban American family in bold relief. And for protagonist Tony Soprano, there's the added complexity posed by heading twin families, his collegial mob clan and his own, nouveau riche brood.
The series' brilliant first season is built around what Tony learns when, whipsawed between those two worlds, he finds himself plunged into depression and seeks psychotherapy--a gesture at odds with his midlevel capo's machismo, yet instantly recognizable as a modern emotional test. With analysis built into the very spine of the show's elaborate episodic structure, creator Chase and his formidable corps of directors, writers, and actors weave an unpredictable series of parallel and intersecting plot arcs that twist from tragedy to farce to social realism. While creating for a smaller screen, they enjoy a far larger canvas than a single movie would afford, and the results, like the very best episodic television, attain a richness and scope far closer to a novel than movies normally get.
Unlike Francis Coppola's operatic dramatization of Mario Puzo's Godfather epic, The Sopranos sustains a poignant, even mundane intimacy in its focus on Tony, brought to vivid life by James Gandolfini's mercurial performance. Alternately seductive, exasperated, fearful, and murderous, Gandolfini is utterly convincing even when executing brutal shifts between domestic comedy and dramatic violence. Both he and the superb team of Italian-American actors recruited as his loyal (and, sometimes, not-so-loyal) henchmen and their various "associates" make this mob as credible as the evocative Bronx and New Jersey locations where the episodes were filmed.
The first season's other life force is Livia Soprano, Tony's monstrous, meddlesome mother. As Livia, the late Nancy Marchand eclipses her long career of patrician performances to create an indelibly earthy, calculating matriarch who shakes up both families; Livia also serves as foil and rival to Tony's loyal, usually level-headed wife, Carmela (Edie Falco). Lorraine Bracco makes Tony's therapist, Dr. Melfi, a convincing confidante, by turns "professional," perceptive, and sexy; the duo's therapeutic relationship is also depicted with uncommon accuracy. Such grace notes only enrich what's not merely an aesthetic high point for commercial television, but an absorbing film masterwork that deepens with subsequent screenings. --Sam SutherlandSee all Editorial Reviews
- An audio commentary on the pilot episode by series creator David Chase and actor/director Peter Bogdanovich
- A 77-minute interview with Chase 'shot' in Tony Soprano's kitchen, and conducted by Bogdanovich
- Two behind-the-scenes featurettes
- An episodic index, with previews and recaps
Would you like to tell us about a lower price?
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Now we understand why everyone else liked this series!
I like that while it is clearly a mob themed show, it also delves into the Soprano family life as well. It made it more interesting. My only (minor complaint) is that there is too much time in the psychiatrist's office. This is ok in Season 1, because it gives some insight into Tony, but in later seasons, it becomes a little dull.
I'm convinced that this is probably the best-written TV show in history--and easily among the best acted. But the writing is just superb. I never realized before, for example, that this series is really about the inner conflict Tony Soprano is having about his life and about him trying to sort out his own personal demons--far more that it is just a tale about the mob.
It's a brilliant series and as dark as parts of it surely are, it's an amazing thing to watch from start to finish.
Unspoken is the fact that Tony is in fact a Machiavellian Prince, a la "The Prince", which is a timeless model for political leaders.
Dominic Chianese is Junior Soprano, Tony's uncle/surrogate father and true head of the Soprano family. He, along with Tony's nephew Christopher, Michael Imperioli, run the gang.
This is a gritty show and certainly not for everybody. Those who followed Oz will likely be among the devotees of the viewing audience. Sopranos isn't always a shoot-em-up program. There's a lot of intrigue of inner working plots and "what do we do next?" thoughts.
The acting, especially from Gandolfini and Falco is above the average television norm. Having this in HBO allowed the series to expend nicely.