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Taking Lives - Director's Cut (Widescreen Edition)

3.5 out of 5 stars 263 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Taking Lives (DVD) (WS) (Unrated)

He would kill to be you. Angelina Jolie stars as FBI Special Agent Illeana Scott, hunting a murderer whom she believes takes both the lives--and assumes the identities--of his victims. But when an unexpected attraction sparks a romantic entanglement, the consummate specialist begins to doubt her finely honed instincts. Now, alone in an unfamiliar city, Agent Scott suddenly finds herself on a case that has become chillingly personal--surrounded by suspects . . . with no one she can trust . . . and a serial killer who is Taking Lives.

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Additional Features

More sex. More violence. That's what you get in the unrated director's cut of Taking Lives, which ought to tell you where director D.J. Caruso's priorities lie. The hot scenes between Angelina Jolie and Ethan Hawke are extended (offering a bit more nudity for Jolie's lecherous fans), and the fate of Gena Rowlands's character is considerably more graphic, but none of the added footage makes the movie any better or worse. That said, this cynical director's cut is the only version worth buying if you're looking to fill out your serial-killer-thriller collection (or your movies-in-which-Jolie-gets-naked collection), and you might as well enjoy the gag reel outtakes because they contain the only footage on the entire DVD in which Jolie cracks a genuine smile. The four featurettes are really just one standard-issue promo reel chopped into thematic categories with a pretentious CSI vibe, and while they offer little of substance, seasoned film buffs will welcome the appearance of veteran British editor Anne V. Coates, who briefly explains her approach to cutting high-tension scenes. The rest is routine at best, but given the choice between the full-screen DVD and this steamier, more gruesome widescreen version, well, it's no contest. Jolie and her breasts await you. --Jeff Shannon

Special Features

Documentaries: Four probing documentaries with the Cast and Crew. * The Art of Collaboration: How the filmmaking team came together * Profiling a Director: Inside D.J. Caruso's Mind * Bodies of Evidence: Stars confess their secrets of working on an ultra-intense thriller * Puzzle Within The Puzzle: The teamwork of Caruso and veteran editor Anne V. CoatesDocumentaries: Four probing documentaries with the Cast and Crew. * The Art of Collaboration: How the filmmaking team came together * Profiling a Director: Inside D.J. Caruso's Mind * Bodies of Evidence: Stars confess their secrets of working on an ultra-intense thriller * Puzzle Within The Puzzle: The teamwork of Caruso and veteran editor Anne V. CoatesDocumentaries: Four probing documentaries with the Cast and Crew. * The Art of Collaboration: How the filmmaking team came together * Profiling a Director: Inside D.J. Caruso's Mind * Bodies of Evidence: Stars confess their secrets of working on an ultra-intense thriller * Puzzle Within The Puzzle: The teamwork of Caruso and veteran editor Anne V. CoatesDocumentaries: Four probing documentaries with the Cast and Crew. * The Art of Collaboration: How the filmmaking team came together * Profiling a Director: Inside D.J. Caruso's Mind * Bodies of Evidence: Stars confess their secrets of working on an ultra-intense thriller * Puzzle Within The Puzzle: The teamwork of Caruso and veteran editor Anne V. CoatesDocumentaries: Four probing documentaries with the Cast and Crew. * The Art of Collaboration: How the filmmaking team came together * Profiling a Director: Inside D.J. Caruso's Mind * Bodies of Evidence: Stars confess their secrets of working on an ultra-intense thriller * Puzzle Within The Puzzle: The teamwork of Caruso and veteran editor Anne V. CoatesDocumentaries: Four probing documentaries with the Cast and Crew. * The Art of Collaboration: How the filmmaking team came together * Profiling a Director: Inside D.J. Caruso's Mind * Bodies of Evidence: Stars confess their secrets of working on an ultra-intense thriller * Puzzle Within The Puzzle: The teamwork of Caruso and veteran editor Anne V. CoatesDocumentaries: Four probing documentaries with the Cast and Crew. * The Art of Collaboration: How the filmmaking team came together * Profiling a Director: Inside D.J. Caruso's Mind * Bodies of Evidence: Stars confess their secrets of working on an ultra-intense thriller * Puzzle Within The Puzzle: The teamwork of Caruso and veteran editor Anne V. Coates

Product Details

  • Actors: Angelina Jolie, Ethan Hawke, Kiefer Sutherland, Olivier Martinez, Tcheky Karyo
  • Directors: D.J. Caruso
  • Writers: Jon Bokenkamp
  • Producers: Mark Canton, Bruce Berman, Bernie Goldmann, Dana Goldberg, David Heyman
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: May 23, 2006
  • Run Time: 103 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (263 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005JMWP
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,959 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Taking Lives - Director's Cut (Widescreen Edition)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Michael Butts HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on August 27, 2004
Format: DVD
Angelina Jolie is to be commended for taking on so many different kinds of characters from her Oscar winning turn in GIRL INTERRUPTED, to the athletic Lara Croft in those two movies, to this suspenseful, if predictable, serial killer thriller. She plays an FBI agent/profiler called in to help the Montreal police in trapping a serial killer. This particular nasty has been killing for over 20 years, and we find out early in the film who he is when he's a youngster, but what about now? Who has he metamorphosized in to?

Director D. J. Caruso gives us a probable suspect, but it's really a red herring, and the true identity should be detected early on. That doesn't spoil the movie, though; it actually makes you feel like a detective because you figured it out.

Along with Jolie's competent performance, Ethan Hawke does well as artist James Costa; Gena Rowlands gives a good performance as Mrs. Asher; and Kiefer Sutherland, looking a little older and heavier, does a usually good turn as a mysterious neighbor of Hawke's. There's a couple of jump out of your seat scares and overall, despite the predictability, TAKING LIVES is a good entry in the ever growing serial killer genre.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
I must say, "Taking Lives" started out as the usual hum-drum serial-killer thriller, and I wasn't expecting it to be very interesting but like many others I have seen. Was I wrong! I found it hard to tear myself away, as the movie became more and more interesting as it went along. Angelina Jolie played her part well. Eathen Hawk was great. And the ending, which I thought was predictable, turned out to be quite the contrary. Good Blu-Ray quality. Very good acting!
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Format: DVD
"Taking Lives" stars Angelina Jolie as FBI profiler Illeana Scott who is assigned to Montreal, and the case of a particularly vicious serial murderer. The killer has been taking lives for 20 years, since his teens, assuming his victims' identities with each crime. There's a line in the movie to the effect that he's "like a hermit crab - when he grows out of his shell, (home), he moves on." OK! So it's not brilliant dialogue, but until we reach the film's halfway mark it is forgivable. After the 1st hour, or so, this scary, chiller-thriller loses its edge in a serious way. The last scenes are really contrived - just not believable by any stretch of the imagination.

Jolie is her usual sexy self as the loner, fast-track agent from Washington, DC. She is welcomed by her old friend and colleague, Captain Hugo Leclair, (Tchécky Karyo), of the Montreal Sûreté, but is resented by macho detective Paquette, (Olivier Martinez), who is handsome in a surly kinda way. Illeana's approach to crime solving is extremely intuitive and unconventional, to say the least - but her unorthodox methods get results, and this case is no different. She quickly comes up with some leads that her Canadian counterparts have missed. Then art gallery owner James Costa, (Ethan Hawke), an actual murder witness, steps in to help the detectives. Costa, who has some artistic talent, is able to sketch the suspect. The hunt picks up speed, and the plot begins to twist, turn and occasionally surprise. I had at least one major scare! There's a decent car chase, a steamy love scene, (super steamy in the Director's Cut), and an unusual take on Illeana's character - all pluses.

The cast is excellent. Ms. Jolie is good here and she develops her character well.
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Format: DVD
Angelina Jole is an attractive lady, so sexy nude scenes of her are always welcome... BUT...I question why she would be willing to show flesh in a lame movie such as this.

Predictabilty is the first problem with this film.

No question por mystery who the killer is after the first 15 minutes.

Poor acting by Ethan Hawke.

A short cameo by Keifer Sutherland that was not needed and very, very brief.

All in all this looked and felt like a "Made for TV" movie except for the nudity and occasional graphic crime scene shots.

I am sure with some editing you will see this movie on LIFESTYLE: TELEVISION FOR WOMEN because it rapidly drops from being a "find the serial killer" movie into a romantic twist film..... seemed forced and unnatural.

The worst complaint......... THE SOUND MAN FOR THIS MOVIE SHOULD BE SHOT !!!!

I can't remember the last time I had to roller-coaster my volume control up and down non-stop thru the entire movie.

Dialogue scenes could barely be heard and action scenes overloaded the sound system..... I had to watch the movie with the TV volume remote in my hand and readjust volume from scene to scene.
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Format: DVD
Angelina Jolie seems to be falling into the same hole as other actresses who have won Oscars recently; Mira Sorvino and Halle Berry come to mind. The roles/films she has chosen have simply not been very good, and 'Taking Lives' is a prime example. It is a gory, derivative mess of a film.

The plot is essentially 'a young man grows to adulthood murdering other men to adopt their lives'. He (Ethan Hawke) finds men who are serial wanderers (no pun intended) who conveniently have no friends or family - really - then murders them in a most vicious fashion. He then 'assumes' their identity until he fancies someone else. Apparently the Montreal, Quebec police are too incompetent to figure this out, so they need Jolie's FBI agent to essentially perform the investigation for them. The Jolie character then proceeds to fall in love with the 'witness' to one of the murders - another instance where the woman cannot be in a film without falling in love with someone. This blew the movie out of the water for me.

The story is a direct derivation of two films: 'Silence of the Lambs' (female FBI agent), and 'Seven' (dark, ugly sets, gore, and general feeling of depression), both of which were done far better than this film. It's not that hard to figure out that the Ethan Hawke character is the culprit within the first hour of the film, even though the scriptwriters try to throw curves at the viewer to heighten the 'suspense'.

The gore is extreme. There are faces smashed in with rocks, stabbings, beatings and decapitations, all depicted in graphic detail. There is also the obligatory morgue/autopsy scene (again clearly lifted from 'Lambs').

I cannot recommend this film; it is simply too derivative and stereotypical.
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