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Showing 1-10 of 79 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 340 reviews
on March 1, 2015
An awesome action adventure. Creative and involving. Sean Connery delivers a great performance as Sir August DeWynter, an maniacal genius and former British Intelligence agent (?) with an axe to grind with the Royal Empire. He has stolen control of a satellite that allows him to control the weather everywhere on the planet. He is holding the world hostage and has a hefty ransom. So British super agent John Steed (Ralph Fiennes) is called into action to stop him, and he is first advised to bring in Dr. Emma Peel (Uma Thurman), a noble prize winning physicist and the number one suspected ally of DeWynter after video footage of her surfaces implicating her in the murder of a high ranking member of the British business community. After he brings her in to meet Mother and Father, they determine she is innocent. But if so, then who is the woman on the video? They decide to team up to get some answers, and start at the home of Sir August DeWynter, where they quickly discover who their enemy is. But he is ready for their every move, and has them both at his mercy in a hurry. But they also soon discover he has a friend on the inside who gave him vital information to help him steal the weather satellite. A mole in British Intelligence. But who? This a exciting and involving action film that has every bit of the charm and charisma of the popular 60's TV series, and all the gadgets as well. It gets a 90's update, of course, but still keeps true to the show at the same time. Thurman and Fiennes have great onscreen chemistry, and as I mentioned, Connery was awesome. The idea of him being a former British agent was a bit cheesy, but still worked well. Brief nudity and mild language are all parents will have to worry about. There's a ton of action and snappy banter, as well as tea. Their was no sequel, which I felt was unfortunate. It didn't exactly kill at the box office, which might be its only downfall. I found it enjoyable and fun.
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on March 7, 2017
Patrick McNee has a bit part in this film. Reason enough to have a copy. The movie tried to add too much of the quirks old series that made it campy. This DVD has the version that was in the theaters.
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on August 31, 2012
In the Nineties it was fashionable for Hollywood to adapt popular television series for the big screen the best being "The Fugitive" and the very worst, in my mind, "Lost In Space". There were high hopes riding on "The Avengers" in the Summer of 1998 with a dream cast of Ralph Fiennes, Uma Thurman, and the iconic Sean Connery. Things didn't bode well for the film when the film's release date kept getting pushed back. Things looked even worse when the film wasn't even previewed for the critics and naturally the daggers were drawn when it was seen and the public followed suit. I saw it in the theatre and was disappointed because it didn't meet my expectations. But what were my expectations? Is this a bad film because it isn't the film I thought it should be? I don't know why I revisited "The Avengers" but I'm glad I did. Common criticisms of the film at the time are these. Fiennes as John Steed and Thurman as Emma Peel had no chemistry. Connery as Sir August De Wynter was lackluster as the villain. London, a bustling city, is oddly bereft of people. Eddie Izzard as one of Connery's henchmen has no dialogue which is strange for a man who makes his living as a stand-up comic. For the first two criticisms I'll say the critics are dead wrong. For the second two I'll say that the makers of the film were making an ironic stab at comedy that may have gone over some people's heads. Viewing this film unbiased by the criticisms at the time of it's release I'll say it's chief virtues are not only Fiennes, Thurman, and Connery but also terrific supporting work by Jim Broadbent, Fiona Shaw, and Eileen Atkins. Patrick MacNee also has a decent cameo. The film has decent production values and special effects but they're secondary to some cheeky dialogue notably between Fiennes and Thurman. It's rare that I do a 180 on a film but that's the case here. This film may have its detractors but if you go into it with an open mind you may find delight in "The Avengers".
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VINE VOICEon September 23, 2008
Prior to 1967, "The Avengers" was yielded in black-and-white. Going to color was a definite improvement; however in 1968 there were three additional significant changes:

1. Mrs. Peel (Diana Rigg) was traded out for Steed's new partner, Tara King (Linda Thorson).

2. The producers asserted that the 1968 episodes were more [paraphrasing] "believable" -- in fact, just the opposite is true. The '68 episodes are more bizarre than ever, but still very good.

3. There is more involvement by Steed's boss, "Mother" (a wheelchair-bound chubby guy who shows up in very strange places to discuss Steed's progress on respective cases).

This DVD package, (2 DVDs, individually cased and further packaged in an attractive cardboard box, this "Set No. 4" color-coded RED), is the fourth of FIVE sets for the 1968 episodes. The marketing of "The Avengers" can be quite confusing so I wanted to get that information out up front. This is also the BEST way to buy the DVDs (by the "set" rather than by the "volume") for any season, from 1963 through 1968.

Patrick Macnee shrewdly plays John Steed, England's gentleman undercover agent. Linda Thorson is one of several of a line of Steed's voluptuous sidekicks. In the U.S., most of us didn't even know about Honor Blackman and Macnee's other (earlier) partners until years later when these episodes finally emerged on VHS tape. Diana Rigg can probably claim about 60% of the credit for the vast number of U.S. audience members who were glued to their TVs when "The Avengers" finally hit here. The other 40% (not forgetting Macnee's fine performances) had to do with the presentation of this excellent series.

Starting in 1965, with Rigg, the filmscore was notably updated and played more prominently throughout the story, enhancing the action and suspense. Also, the action itself was boosted. There was never a dull moment with Steed and Mrs. Peel. And these episodes were all FUN -- one embraced a sense that Macnee and Rigg were having a great time in making these films. Now that I've seen episodes from "The Avengers'" earlier years, ('63 and '64), I can see that they dragged quite a bit during that earlier era and were much more soap opera-ish. The fun continued throughout the final year, 1968, even though Linda Thorson was simply never quite as dynamic or as sexy as Diana Rigg. The '68 filmscore and title scenes at the beginning and the conclusion of each episode were spiffed up a bit too.

Each of these 52-minute episodes is futuristic (at least for the period) and on the cutting edge of excellent television productions. I know of no series, "The Original Star Trek Series" excepted, which has remained as timeless as "The Avengers". You'll encounter, in the 1968 episodes, every nemesis ranging from Eastern spies posing as murderous British Army officers to equally murderous hotel desk clerks.

In the 1968 Set No. 4 (which includes Vols. 7 and 8), we're talking about seven very enjoyable, action-packed, color episodes:

Volume 7:

"Wish You Were Here" - In a parody of "The Prisoner" Tara attempts to free her uncle from a hotel which has a firm "no check-out early" policy. This is a superb episode.

"Stay Tuned" - Investigating Steed's amnesia (a returning theme from previous years), Steed and Tara uncover a plot to kill their boss, "Mother".

"Take Me To Your Leader" - A briefcase stuffed with money and a bomb seems to have a mind of its own - and it's giving strange orders.

Volume 8:

"Fog" - When foreign committee members arrive in London for a meeting, they find themselves stalked by the "Gaslight Ghoul," a Victorian killer with a modern motive.

"Homicide and Old Lace" - On his birthday, Mother tells tales of an older adventure. The flashback scenes were originally filmed for the never-aired episode, "The Great Britain Crime".

"Love All" - The missile department is leaking secrets but Steed and Tara sniff out the source of the indiscretion. A terrific episode.

"Get-A-Way" - A prison is having trouble holding enemy agents. The first two escapees knock off Steed's pals... is he the next on the list?

The storylines of the various "The Avengers" episodes seem absurd to varying degrees as we view them today - but 1968 continued to escalate the absurdity beyond the previous years' entries. This did not diminish my enthusiasm for the "The Avengers" because the overall series always manifested a "Batman" (TV series) tongue-and-cheekness about it. I mention this only to prepare viewers for this actuality.

The casting in all episodes is spot-on, punctuated with the very best sets and scenic locations. And Linda Thorson's astounding beauty (tenoned with her great figure!) really accentuates the `60s look in her mod attire.

I'll be reviewing all of the 1968 sets, (as I mentioned earlier, there are five in all, with 2 "volumes" per set), so be on the watch for my comments regarding the other sets at their appropriate sites on Amazon. In the meantime, while not exactly as marvelous as the 1967 episodes, this particular set still garners my highest recommendation!
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on December 22, 2013
This movie had some plusses going for it, primarily the cast. A lot of money was spent on the production design and special effects, but the film suffers from a misconceived premise. First of all, it's dealing with a witty, effervescent spy romp -- an iconographical series of the 60's -- but it tries to turn it into a darker, insupportable James Bondian (same production designer). "Dark" and the Avengers don't really mix. The whole production is dark, lots of crashing special effects, derring do, conflict between "Father" and "Mother" which is never explained. The dialogue is hard to understand and captioning is not provided on the streaming version. A problem. Other elements in the script are also confusing--the Emma Peel imposter, rationale, etc. The direction is just leaden and that's fatal to this type of film.
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on July 14, 2016
Definitely not up to the standards of the TV series. Ralph Fiennes is a second rate John Steed. Uma Thurman is a little better as Emma Peele but making her an expert in every science is a little much. Having two people running the agency is too much. Having the man code named Mother and the woman code named Father is too cute by far.
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on April 19, 2017
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on February 14, 2014
Seeing Sean Connery in such a silly role is kind of worth it just as proof that it actually happened. Otherwise, I was surprised to see that Eddie Izzard is in this as well but is completely wasted as they gave him only one line in the entire movie - come on, he is a stand-up comedian!

Anyway, silly story, not greatly acted, and sub-par pacing makes this one to avoid for the most part.
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on October 22, 2016
One of the coolest TV shows from a time when there was something on that didn't insult your intelligence.
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Each of Steed's ladies made their own mark. Honor Blackman's Kathy Gale, set the pace. Sleek sassy women, who were as smart as they were sexy. They held their own in a man's world and didn't need someone to take care of them. Blackman and Rigg were two very positive role models in a time when most women were victims, wives or secretaries on telly at the time. Blackman made less of an impact in US, because they were generally shown as a Summer Replacement, to keep people from seeing reruns. Since they were run on ABC, tried to be recognized as a big-boy network the old Black and White Gales were not widely scene.

Rigg came along and made Emma Peel a character that will go down in the hall of fame. She is as popular today, if not more so. So when she left--to do as Blackman did -- go on to be a Bond girl, Steed had to have another partner. Enter Tara King. She gorgeous full figure Canadian with eyes to do for. They tried to play on her more feminine side (and with horrid fashions). Seriously, the clothes designers for Tara needs shooting. For the most part, they couldn't design more dumpy look clothes. They stuffed her in a series of wigs - some very bad - so point one, she was fighting an uphill battle. Also, the scripts were not as sharp. Even so Tara is charming and a pleasure to watch.

Episodes include:

Wish You Were Here

Stay Tuned

Take Me to Your Leader


Homocide and Old Lace

Love All

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