Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon

Young Catherine [VHS]

4.4 out of 5 stars 114 customer reviews


Geek Boutique 2016 Geek Boutique HQP


Editorial Reviews

The story of Catherine the Great, starting with her teenaged marriage into Russian royalty.

Product Details

  • Actors: Vanessa Redgrave, Christopher Plummer, Franco Nero, Marthe Keller, Maximilian Schell
  • Directors: Michael Anderson
  • Writers: Chris Bryant
  • Producers: Michael Deeley, Neville C. Thompson, Stephen Smallwood
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: Turner Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: May 29, 1991
  • Run Time: 150 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (114 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6302025079
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #215,948 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Young Catherine [VHS]" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
Let me first of all clear up some confusion: this seems to be the double-cassette, 180-minute version of "Young Catherine", not the badly edited 150-minute version. If so, it's the best available. Unfortunately, even this, often sold as the "complete" movie, is not really complete. The laser disc version on the Internet Movie database lists a running time of 187 minutes; moreover, when I tried to watch my copy of this video, I noticed quickly that little scenes were missing. I took out my original tapes from the TV broadcasts. Sure enough, there ARE cuts -- maybe not huge cuts, but telling cuts just the same, that sacrifice details and context to no good purpose. Seven minutes may not seem like much (if that's ALL that is missing), but the scenes I noted (before I gave up comparing and just watched my old TV taping) added significant characterization to the script and established clearer motivations for several key players. Why bother to remove these scenes? Just to save seven minutes of videotape? bah!

Enough of that. I would still recommend this film to anyone who likes a rousing good historical drama with well-defined characters, a meaty plot involving intrigue and romance, witty and believable dialogue, and thoroughly engaging performances by all players. (Plummer's droll English ambassador is especially noteworthy.) If only half the period flicks were this intelligently scripted! I knew nothing at all about Catherine the Great before watching this (except for the scandalous gossip that later grew up around her), had never seen Julia Ormond before, yet both film and actress are now firm favorites. Also commendable are Redgrave's capricious Empress and Reece Dinsdale's thoroughly madcap Grand Duke Peter, Catherine's surprise bridegroom.
Read more ›
4 Comments 63 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
Frederick the Great sums it up beautifully at the end of this magnificent movie when he comments that this "frail, young slip of a girl has won herself an empire, and there is nothing anyone can do about it. Against all the odds, that is what she has done." I have always been fascinated by the bold outlines of the Catherine saga -- how she was shipped across a continent as a teenager to audition for marriage into a family renowned for its violence, how she was wed as a pawn of international politics to a strange youth who would emerge a mad sadist with autocratic power, how she survived and, although a woman and not of Russian stock, wrested a throne from the blood descendants of Peter the Great to become the dominant monarch of her age.
But how? And why? Until time travel is conquered, we'll probably never know all the answers. Meanwhile, though, this movie stands as the best "it could have happened this way" presentation of what might have lain behind the momentous historical facts. Even when there is a descent into bald speculation, such as with the non-Romanov paternity of Catherine's son, the speculation is based on a credible interpretation of known events and tracks what many court gossips suspected at the time and some historians have surmised since.
The icing on the cake of an intelligent script in the hands of talented actors is that these guessed-at events are filmed in the actual settings against which the real events played out. Sure, the palace was rebuilt after WWII more in its 19th-century garb than its 18th, and there are a few shots from Peterhof that are presented as being on the grounds of the Catherine Palace. But who cares? The sense of the grandeur of the age and the overwhelming luxury that still cannot squelch shabbiness of spirit remains intact. You'll find few, if any, historical dramas better done than this one.
Comment 90 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By A Customer on March 11, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
I originally saw this movie in 1991 or 1992 when it aired on TV. I recorded it and watched many, many times. I shared it with everyone I knew! Not a single person who has viewed this film disliked it! In college, I majored in Russian, so naturally I was drawn to it. It is breathtaking, rich, dramatic. I now teach Russian to high school students and show this movie each year. Every single one of my high school students is glued to every scene, every word, every character of this film. They comment on it, discuss it, and are enthralled by the characters, the costumes, the palaces, and of course the historical period. It has a timeless appeal and is enjoyed by anyone aged 10 to age 100. I highly recommend seeing it!
1 Comment 41 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By Car on February 8, 2008
Format: DVD
If you're thinking of buying this DVD think again and save your money. It's an obvious bootleg copy of the film. The picture is so grainy you could never believe this is a Brand New DVD.
5 Comments 54 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I am very pleased to revise my review of the original VHS release of Young Catherine in order to comment here on this brand new official DVD release that, joyfully, marks the appearance at last of the complete version of this outstanding 1991 TV film (a British/Canadian production filmed on locations in Russia) as broadcast on cable television, before the edited versions began to take over.

Finally we can shelve our old TV tapings in favor of this DVD and enjoy the full scope of this production, with a smart script, lavish palace sets, and a young Julia Ormond, so often under-appreciated and misused, in a breakout role as "young" Catherine. I highly recommend this film to anyone who likes a rousing good historical drama with well-defined characters, a meaty plot involving intrigue and romance, witty yet believable dialogue, and thoroughly engaging performances by all players. (Redgrave as the capricious Empress Elizabeth, Schell's conniving Frederick the Great, and Plummer's droll English ambassador are especially noteworthy.) If only half the period flicks were this intelligently scripted! I knew nothing at all about Catherine the Great before watching this (except for the scandalous gossip that later grew up around her), had never seen Julia Ormond before, yet both film and actress are now firm favorites. Also commendable is Reece Dinsdale's thoroughly madcap Grand Duke Peter, Catherine's surprise bridegroom. Dinsdale must have graduated first in his class at the Roddy McDowall School of Acting -- his resemblance to the veteran English actor is startling in this picture, and he makes a wonderfully loony (but still dangerous) Grand Duke, with his delusions, perversions, and idiocies.
Read more ›
Comment 21 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse



What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customers Also Watched on Amazon Video


Pages with Related Products. See and discover other items: aliens movie