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Gleason
     

Gleason

Director: Howard Deutch

Cast: Brad Garrett, Terry Farrell, Saul Rubinek

 
Everybody Loves Raymond co-star Brad Garrett brings "The Great One" to life in this made-for-TV biography of video icon Jackie Gleason. The product of a fractious Brooklyn childhood, capped by the abrupt desertion of his ne'er-do-well father, Gleason launches his show business career with the motto "Never depend on anyone." Yet because of his multitude of

Overview

Everybody Loves Raymond co-star Brad Garrett brings "The Great One" to life in this made-for-TV biography of video icon Jackie Gleason. The product of a fractious Brooklyn childhood, capped by the abrupt desertion of his ne'er-do-well father, Gleason launches his show business career with the motto "Never depend on anyone." Yet because of his multitude of insecurities, he demands total loyalty and 100-percent devotion from everyone around him. Trouble is, he has no loyalty or devotion to give in return: Dedicated to his career, his drinking, and his womanizing (not always in that order), Jackie neglects his wife Gen (Gretchen Egolf) and his children, tyrannizes his associates in general and his faithful agent George "Bullets" Durgom (Saul Rubinek) in particular, and shamelessly steals other people's ideas and comedy material, claiming it exclusively as his own. For all his bluster and bullying, Gleason remains likable and arguably even lovable -- just like his most famous TV character, Brooklyn bus driver Ralph Kramden (indeed, the script suggests that Gleason was Kramden and Kramden was Gleason -- and that Jackie was envious of Ralph's ability to "make things up" to his long-suffering wife Alice at the end of each Honeymooners sketch). The film is at its best in its re-creations of Gleason's stage and TV triumphs, though one could nitpick about the hazy and often downright inaccurate chronology of events. As the title character, Brad Garrett offers an uncannily on-target portrayal, despite the fact that the 6'8" actor was nearly a foot taller than the real Gleason (this discrepancy was amply compensated for by the clever camera angles of cinematographer Neil Roach, not to mention the elevator shoes worn by practically every other member of the cast). Of the supporting players, Gretchen Egolf and Terry Farrell are superb as Jackie's first and second wives respectively, while Michael Chieffo's portrayal of Art Carney is eerily perfect. Co-written by Michael Preminger and Rick Podell, the same team responsible for Jackie Gleason's final theatrical feature Nothing in Common, Gleason made its CBS network debut on October 13, 2002.

Product Details

Release Date:
12/27/2005
UPC:
0096009401092
Original Release:
2002
Source:
Echo Bridge
Time:
1:29:00

Special Features

Interactive menus; Chapter selections

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Brad Garrett Jackie Gleason
Terry Farrell Marilyn Taylor
Saul Rubinek George "Bullets" Durgom
Gretchen Egolf Genevieve Halford Gleason
Paula Jean Hixson Mae Gleason
Jack Langedijk Herb Gleason
Kristen Dalton Audrey Meadows
Michael Chieffo Art Carney
Jake Brockman Young Jackie
Johanna Nutter Joyce Randolph

Technical Credits
Howard Deutch Director
Chris Boardman Score Composer
Judy Cairo Producer
Barbara Lieberman Executive Producer
Rick Podell Teleplay
Michael Preminger Teleplay
Neil Roach Cinematographer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Gleason
1. The Great One [3:27]
2. Someone to Blame [4:18]
3. Cold Christmas [2:05]
4. Timing is Everything [4:21]
5. Meet my Ma [2:54]
6. Dinner for Big Shots [4:41]
7. One last Drink [3:21]
8. Jackie's Proposal [3:53]
9. On With the Show [3:15]
10. Jack Warner [3:18]
11. Make it Funny [4:05]
12. Out of Hiding [3:31]
13. On Broadway [2:25]
14. Leading Man [5:05]
15. Cavalcade of Stars [2:52]
16. Shake it Up [2:28]
17. The Honeymooners [3:31]
18. Test Run [3:57]
19. Let's Talk Numbers [3:04]
20. CBS Family [2:46]
21. Buying Love [4:00]
22. Marital Feud [4:32]
23. Absent Father [6:46]
24. Final Season [4:45]

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