Jason and the Argonauts

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Overview

This cinematic rendition of ancient Greek mythology has always been a family favorite, thanks mainly to Ray Harryhausen's groundbreaking special effects, and Columbia TriStar has worked hard to do the film justice with this DVD edition. For an older film the picture quality is surprisingly crisp, and the sweeping landscapes and rippling oceans are perfectly captured in enhanced widescreen. The mono sound is also better than expected, Bernard Herrman's majestic score sounding better than ever. The special features...
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Overview

This cinematic rendition of ancient Greek mythology has always been a family favorite, thanks mainly to Ray Harryhausen's groundbreaking special effects, and Columbia TriStar has worked hard to do the film justice with this DVD edition. For an older film the picture quality is surprisingly crisp, and the sweeping landscapes and rippling oceans are perfectly captured in enhanced widescreen. The mono sound is also better than expected, Bernard Herrman's majestic score sounding better than ever. The special features on the DVD include the quaintly amusing original theatrical trailer and very brief filmographies. More interesting, though again brief, is an interview with Harryhausen by John Landis in which Harryhausen talks about the film and explains the basics of his stop-motion photography techniques. But the crowning glory of this DVD is "The Ray Harryhausen Chronicles," an hour-long documentary about the life and work of the great man. This includes extensive clips from many of the films on which he worked, endorsements from the likes of George Lucas, and detailed insight into his meticulous work methods. Although the extra features on this DVD are devoted more to Ray Harryhausen than to Jason and the Argonauts specifically, they do complement the film nicely, and the main feature itself is presented well enough to make this a pleasing DVD edition for fans of the acclaimed adventure tale.
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Special Features

Languages: English [mono], Spanish, French; Subtitles: English, Spanish, French; Theatrical trailer; Scene selections; Widescreen and full-screen formats; Interview with Ray Harryhausen by John Landis
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Amy Robinson
This entertaining screen version of the ancient Greek epic quickly became a staple for hordes of fantasy-minded moviegoers everywhere. Amid hordes of monsters and mythological evil, usurped heir apparent Jason Todd Armstrong battles his way to the ends of the earth to retrieve the infamous Golden Fleece and regain his father's throne. Like all entries in the fantasy genre of that period, Jason and the Argonauts offers plenty of campy pleasures, yet it is strong enough to stand on its own as a straight-up adventure tale -- the myth has stood the test of time, after all. The great Bernard Herrmann provides one of his typically evocative scores, and film buffs will enjoy hints of other Herrmann pieces that are weaved into it. The film's greatest claim to fame, however, is the special-effects wizardry of Ray Harryhausen, who also provided his fantastic stop-motion effects for the infamous Clash of the Titans and The 7th Voyage of Sinbad. In Jason, watch for a splendid bit of swordplay between the heroes and a pack of fighting skeletons. Harryhausen's creations -- wonderfully detailed and very much alive -- are seamlessly integrated into the thrilling action sequences that have made Jason and the Argonauts a fantasy genre favorite.
All Movie Guide - Ryan Shriver
A quintessential Ray Harryhausen/Charles Schnerr fantasy adventure, Jason and the Argonauts also holds up relatively well as a representative genre film, considering the vast achievements in technological effects since the film's 1963 release. While the story and direction are ably accomplished, the real draw of this film -- as with any Harryhausen endeavor -- are the legendary stop-motion special effects that influenced scores of subsequent filmmakers and helped pave the way for the fantasy/science fiction blockbusters of the 1980s and beyond. On the other hand, the human cast of the film -- while delightful in their own little ways -- never comes close to matching the impressiveness of the effects, with acting that is more often than not overwrought and just plain silly. As an entertainment, however, Jason and the Argonauts remains a light and engaging diversion for the entire family, worthy of afternoon viewings even after all these years.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/14/1998
  • UPC: 043396002593
  • Original Release: 1963
  • Rating:

  • Source: Sony Pictures
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Pre-1954 Standard (1.33.1), Theatre Wide-Screen (1.85.1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen / Pan & Scan / Mono
  • Sound: monaural
  • Language: English, Français, Español
  • Time: 1:44:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Todd Armstrong Jason
Nancy Kovack Medea
Gary Raymond Acoustus
Laurence Naismith Argus
Niall MacGinnis Zeus
Michael Gwynn Hermes
Honor Blackman Hera
Douglas Wilmer Pelias
John Cairney Hylas
Patrick Troughton Phineas
Andrew Faulds Phalerus
Nigel Green Hercules
John Crawford Polydeuces
Douglas Robinson Euphemus
Nando Poggi Castor
Jack Gwyllim King Aeetes
Technical Credits
Don Chaffey Director
Wilkie Cooper Cinematographer
Beverley Cross Screenwriter
John Dark Production Manager
Geoffrey Drake Production Designer
Ray Harryhausen Associate Producer, Special Effects
Herbert Smith Art Director
Bernard Herrmann Score Composer, Musical Direction/Supervision
Red Law Sound/Sound Designer
Jack Maxsted Art Director
Mario Nascimbene Musical Direction/Supervision
Syd Pearson Special Effects
Jan Read Screenwriter
Maurice Rootes Editor
Toni Sarzi-Braga Art Director
Charles H. Schneer Producer
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Scene Index

Scene Selections
0. Scene Selections
1. Start [1:50]
2. Reading the Future [2:04]
3. Hera [3:38]
4. In Olympus [1:44]
5. 20 Years Later [4:46]
6. Hermes [2:36]
7. "Welcome to Olympus" [3:22]
8. Selecting a crew [1:06]
9. Hercules vs. Hylas [2:03]
10. The Argo [1:47]
11. The voyage begins [2:38]
12. Asking Hera's help [2:43]
13. Isle of Bronze [2:48]
14. Treasure Chamber [1:44]
15. Talos [10:07]
16. Rebuilding the Argo [4:15]
17. Tormenting Phineas [4:56]
18. Making Phineas master [4:46]
19. Clashing Rocks [5:09]
20. Triton [4:32]
21. Medea [2:47]
22. Acastus vs. Jason [4:17]
23. Temple of Hecate [4:09]
24. Aeetes' Palace [6:19]
25. The Golden Fleece [:49]
26. The Hydra [8:48]
27. "Rise Up!" [1:45]
28. Children of the teeth [6:04]
Scene Selections
0. Scene Selections
1. Start [1:50]
2. Reading the Future [2:04]
3. Hera [3:38]
4. In Olympus [1:44]
5. 20 Years Later [4:46]
6. Hermes [2:36]
7. "Welcome to Olympus" [3:22]
8. Selecting a crew [1:06]
9. Hercules vs. Hylas [2:03]
10. The Argo [1:47]
11. The voyage begins [2:38]
12. Asking Hera's help [2:43]
13. Isle of Bronze [2:48]
14. Treasure Chamber [1:44]
15. Talos [10:07]
16. Rebuilding the Argo [4:15]
17. Tormenting Phineas [4:56]
18. Making Phineas master [4:46]
19. Clashing Rocks [5:09]
20. Triton [4:32]
21. Medea [2:47]
22. Acastus vs. Jason [4:17]
23. Temple of Hecate [4:09]
24. Aeetes' Palace [6:19]
25. The Golden Fleece [:49]
26. The Hydra [8:48]
27. "Rise Up!" [1:45]
28. Children of the teeth [6:04]
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Menu

Side #1- Widescreen
Play Movie
Languages
Subtitles
Theatrical Trailer
   Menu Group #1 with 28 chapter(s) covering 01:43:44
Interview With Ray Harryhausin And John Landis
Side #2- Full Screen
Play Movie
Languages
Subtitles
Theatrical Trailer
   Menu Group #1 with 28 chapter(s) covering 01:43:44
Interview With Ray Harryhausin And John Landis
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 16 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(11)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 12 of 16 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    Jason and the Argonauts

    An oldie but goodie. Sure, it's kinda campy but they just don't make 'em like they used to. It's much better than the made for TV mini-series that came out a few years ago.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Loved It!

    My 7th and 8th grade literature classes loved the movie! While they thought the special effects were campy, they loved the action and could make the connections between what they had learned about Greek myths and the ancient world with this movie without me having to make the connections for them. They kept wanting to see the skeletons fight.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    The way mythology ought to be told

    If you enjoy Greek mythology and good film making, you'll certainly enjoy "Jason and the Argonauts." It is indeed possible to reproduce the ancient world without digital special effects! A strong cast, excellent photography and, of course, Ray Harryhousen's wonderful special effects make this a DVD you'll watch more than once.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Give it a try

    I can remember seeing this movie in the drive in as a child and being absolutely PETRIFIED of the skeletons popping up and sword fighting-the special effects in this movie are marvelous considering the year it was made. I ADORE neptune coming up from the sea to hold the clashing rocks and the bronze man coming down from his pedestal to avenge the plundering of his treasure trove. AND I LOVED the actor who played Jason . I always thought he was so handsome, but I have never seen him in anything else. It starts kind of slow at first, but is worth the wait.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    One of the Greatest Adventure Films Ever Made

    Larry D. Bohall, author of Martyr's Cry (ISBN: 1591295327): When I was a kid, our town showed this movie in the city park. I was about 6 or 7, and I was absolutely enthralled (and scared out of my wits by the Children of the Hydra!). I still love this film. Today's technology has improved, but some of these scenes (including the harpies and the Children of the Hydra) stand up to this day. I recommend it highly!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    One of the Best

    This wonderful fantasy has it all: Derring-do, romance and a good feel for the subject matter. On top of the well-known skeleton and harpy scenes, it has something no other Greek myth movie I know of has ever shown: in the original stories Hercules (or Heracles, if you're Greek) is a whining, self-centered baby who just happens to be super strong. Lo and behold, in this movie that's just the way he's portrayed. Loved it!

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    Posted December 21, 2010

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    Posted December 7, 2010

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 12 of 16 Customer Reviews