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The King and I

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This visual and musical masterpiece features Yul Brynner's Academy Award-winning performance, an unforgettable Rodgers and Hammerstein score, and brilliant choreography by Jerome Robbins. It tells the true story of an Englishwoman, Anna Leonowens (Deborah Kerr), who comes to Siam as schoolteacher to the royal court in the 1860's. Though she soon finds herself at odds with the stubborn monarch (Brynner), over time, Anna and the King stop trying to change each other and begin to understand one another.

Starring:
Deborah Kerr, Yul Brynner
Runtime:
2 hours, 13 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Drama, Romance, Musical
Director Walter Lang
Starring Deborah Kerr, Yul Brynner
Supporting actors Rita Moreno, Martin Benson, Terry Saunders, Rex Thompson, Carlos Rivas, Patrick Adiarte, Alan Mowbray, Geoffrey Toone, Leo Abbey, Robert Banas, Dennis Bonilla, Thomas Bonilla, Jerry Chien, Nancy Chien, Mary Lou Clifford, Judy Dan, Gemze De Lappe, Amir Farr
Studio 20th Century Fox
MPAA rating NR (Not Rated)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Lars Sandell on October 30, 2006
Format: DVD
It's finally here! The so-called definitive version of this lovely classic has now been restored AGAIN from the surviving 55mm negative, and there is indeed cause for cheers. Yes, it is now finally anamorphic on DVD! And yes, it looks absolutely gorgeous! Better color, sharpness and contrast than the old DVD issued in 1999 - and that one still looks quite impressive thanks to THX, although sadly non-anamorphic. Even so, the new one looks superior and has lots more bonus material!

But now a sad warning: If you own the old DVD and want this beauty of a film in its complete roadshow version - keep it by all means! The new 50th Anniversary Edition lacks the Overture, the Intermission Music and the Exit Music!

Incredible! And all that lush music was available on the 1999 DVD! What goes on in the heads of the people in charge at Fox? After the fiasco with the Todd-AO "Oklahoma!" recently, Fox should very well know by now that fans of these Rodgers & Hammerstein-films are not likely to accept inferior and sloppy product. Here's a loud and clear boo aimed at Fox Home Video top brass from one fan! Get yourselves new jobs outside the entertainment industry and leave the DVD-business to smart film lovers who are also responsible professionals!
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Format: DVD
A long-awaited arrival on DVD, THE KING AND I is one of the best examples of stage-to-screen adaptation, except for one glaring fault - the trimming of the score! 20th Century-Fox spent lots of effort and money to bring this Rodgers and Hammerstein hit to the very wide CinemaScope 55 screen, and the various artists who worked on the project certainly put a stunning vision of the show up on that wide screen. Production and costume design are dazzling, the orchestrations are expansive in magnetic stereo (re-engineered for Dolby 5.1), the cast is simply perfect; overall a first rate presentation of the material. But at the last minute, the studio scrapped their original idea to roadshow the picture in 55mm, and some filmed numbers were dropped to shorten the overall length. This is always detrimental, not matter what the excuses for cutting, because it means that the show becomes less than complete. But even if we could overlook the cutting of the second half of "I Whistle a Happy Tune", "Western People Funny", and maybe "My Lord and Master", the deletion of Anna's biting "Shall I Tell You What I Think of You?" is inexcusable, and the cutting of the score's most beautiful ballad, "I Have Dreamed", is a genuine crime. One might have been hopeful that Fox would have restored, or at least included as outtakes, the missing numbers for DVD, but no such luck! The same fate has also befallen their recent release of the 1967 DOCTOR DOLITTLE.
All of that said, this is a gorgeous transfer of a beautiful film, both visually and sonically. The deluxe laserdisc set was very pretty, but the DVD image is much sharper and clearer.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Blu-Ray, with its high definition picture, color and sound, is an ideal format for musicals. So, my hopes were high for 20th Century Fox's opulent "The King And I" (1956) on Blu-Ray. Instead, I was shocked. In many places, the color and picture looked washed out or muddled. It looked as if someone had taken a fading print of "The King And I" and transferred it to Blu-Ray. Previously, I had been blown away by such musical classics as "West Side Story" and "The Sound Of Music" on Blu-Ray, which fairly pop with vividness in Blu-Ray High Definition. Not so here. I watched the entire movie, but knew "The King And I" should not look like this on Blu-Ray. So I did a test. I got out my DVD of "The King And I" from the 2005 "Rodgers And Hammerstein Collection." I watched the first 15 minutes of the movie again. Sure enough. Everything was sharper and clearer on DVD! This combo pack also includes two DVDS. Hopefully, they also look better than the Blu-ray. All the Extras from the 2005 DVD edition seem to also be included here.
The Blu-Ray bust is especially disappointing because "The King And I" features the most crackling and complicated central relationship in all of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals. Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr play the multiple conflicts between the mercurial King and the high-minded English governess Anna beautifully. This is, in fact, a musical drama, or more accurately, musical tragedy. And it is a tragedy that comes out of the best of intentions. The King was born a conservative, but he wants to be a liberal, modern monarch. Anna comes to Siam with an open heart, if not necessarily an open mind. She is sincerely interested in, and wants to help, the people of Siam. And she is fascinated by the charismatic King.
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Format: DVD
This brand-new 50th Anniversary edition of THE KING AND I is a must for all fans of the timeless Rodgers and Hammerstein masterpiece. Widowed English schoolteacher Anna Leonowens (Deborah Kerr) travels to Siam after she is offered a position to tutor the children of the King (Yul Brynner). Once in Siam, Anna and the King clash on matters of politics, ethics and the heart...two very different individuals who manage to still find the very best in each other. This magical movie has never looked or sounded better, in a new DVD remaster. Audio commentary for the film is provided by Michael Portantiere and Richard Barrios.

This DVD has been available for a while in the UK and Australia, and will finally get a US release this November. Extra features will include the pilot episode of the "Anna and the King" TV series starring Samantha Eggar and Brynner (with optional commentary by Eggar); vintage performances from the "General Foods" Rodgers & Hammerstein TV tribute (Patricia Morison and Brynner). Several new featurettes and rare MovieTone news segments.
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