Pirates of Silicon Valley

( 4 )

Overview

This tech-world biopic traces the fortunes of personal-computer companies Apple and Microsoft from their obscure dorm-room and backyard origins to their very public battle for corporate supremacy. Writer/director Martyn Burke follows the parallel lives of Microsoft founder Bill Gates Anthony Michael Hall and Apple co-founders Steve Jobs Noah Wyle and Steve Wozniak Joey Slotnick -- the former a crafty Harvard dropout, the latter a pair of hippies with jobs at Hewlett-Packard and a yen to sell miniature versions of...
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Overview

This tech-world biopic traces the fortunes of personal-computer companies Apple and Microsoft from their obscure dorm-room and backyard origins to their very public battle for corporate supremacy. Writer/director Martyn Burke follows the parallel lives of Microsoft founder Bill Gates Anthony Michael Hall and Apple co-founders Steve Jobs Noah Wyle and Steve Wozniak Joey Slotnick -- the former a crafty Harvard dropout, the latter a pair of hippies with jobs at Hewlett-Packard and a yen to sell miniature versions of corporate mainframes to small businesses and at-home enthusiasts. Much like the personal-computer industry itself, the action starts with Apple then gradually shifts to Microsoft. The former plot thread recounts how Jobs and Wozniak "borrowed" key concepts from a Xerox computer lab, eked out their success as countercultural businessmen, and finally fell out with one another over the pressure of success. The latter thread focuses on the way Gates learned from, then surpassed, the brains behind Apple and turned his company into the global powerhouse that it is today. Based on Paul Freiberger and Michael Swaine's Fire in the Valley: The Making of the Personal Computer, the film actually focuses only on that book's final chapters. Produced for cable channel TNT, Pirates of Silicon Valley debuted June 18, 1999.
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Special Features

DVD-exclusive introduction by Noah Wyle; TV spot; Languages & subtitles: English & Español
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Brian J. Dillard
Thanks to inspired casting and strong writing, this well-oiled TV biopic managed to transform the unglamorous genesis of the personal-computer industry into solid entertainment precisely at the moment when dot-com mania was sweeping the nation. Perennial '80s geek Anthony Michael Hall gets his best screen role since Six Degrees of Separation in the form of Microsoft founder Bill Gates, the ultimate embodiment of the revenge of the nerds. Meanwhile, ER star Noah Wyle gets to step out of Dr. John Carter's skin and into a quietly intense portrayal of Apple guru Steve Jobs. Hall's smarmy intellect and Wyle's tortured-yuppie temper may conform closely to public perception of the men they portray, but neither performance sinks into infotainment schtick. And unlike a lot of true-life TV movies, Pirates of Silicon Valley doesn't telescope its complicated plot into a series of irritatingly unconnected vignettes. Instead, it meticulously traces the key events that shaped the Apple/Microsoft struggle and laid the foundations of today's business and, increasingly, personal world. There is a bit of Wired magazine-style hyperbole in the script's awe of the computer world -- a flaw that's especially obvious now, after the Internet stock crash. The overwrought treatment of Jobs' personal life, too, could have used a rewrite. But for the most part, writer/director Martyn Burke treats his subject objectively, with a dose of humor -- exactly what the material needs.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/30/2005
  • UPC: 053939699623
  • Original Release: 1999
  • Rating:

  • Source: Turner Home Ent
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Full Frame
  • Presentation: Full Frame
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:37:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 19,581

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Noah Wyle Steve Jobs
Anthony Michael Hall Bill Gates
Joey Slotnick Steve Wozniak
John DiMaggio Steve Ballmer
Josh Hopkins Paul Allen
Gema Zamprogna Arlene
Allan Royal John Sculley
Wayne Pere Captain Crunch
Technical Credits
Martyn Burke Director, Screenwriter
Aaron Barsky Asst. Director
Joseph Dougherty Executive Producer
Frank Fitzpatrick Score Composer
Lisa Freiberger Casting
Jeffrey S. Ginn Production Designer
Brandt Gordon Art Director
Steven Haft Executive Producer
Stephen Halbert Sound/Sound Designer
Richard Halsey Editor
Ross Judd Camera Operator
Nick Lombardo Executive Producer
Timothy A. Miguel Makeup
Leanne Moore Producer
Ousama Rawi Cinematographer
Gregory Sill Musical Direction/Supervision
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Pirates of Silicon Valley
1. Big Brother Credits [3:40]
2. Weird Places [5:32]
3. Computer Language [4:35]
4. Vision of Victory [2:18]
5. Revolutionary Ideas [3:53]
6. Businessmen [4:33]
7. Employee Zero's Trip [3:45]
8. Quit Harvard for This? [4:34]
9. The Rest of Us [4:06]
10. Computer Faire 1977 [3:20]
11. Unfit [5:32]
12. Belly of the Beast [5:02]
13. The Sound of Money [3:45]
14. The Right Name [6:08]
15. $100-Billion Head Start [4:02]
16. I Want It [2:26]
17. Who's the Pirate? [5:01]
18. Battle Casualties [4:23]
19. Torn Apart [2:35]
20. Flower Child [2:26]
21. Stealing From Us [4:18]
22. One Big Family [2:49]
23. Better Doesn't Matter [2:28]
24. Coda and End Credits [5:18]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Pirates of Silicon Valley
   Play Movie
   Scenes
   Features
      Introduction by Noah Wyle
      Pirates of Silicon Valley
      The Librarian: Quest for the Spear
      Evel Kneivel
   Languages
      Spoken Languages: English
      Spoken Languages: Español
      Subtitles: English
      Subtitles: Español
      Subtitles: Off
      Next
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 4 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(2)

4 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Good performances make it worth a look

    Released in 1999, just as Apple began its comeback with the hot-selling iMac, and Microsoft faced anti-trust lawsuits in the U.S. and Europe, ''Pirates'' is a well-cast, slickly made history of the beginnings of the personal computer industry, told through the parallel stories of Apple's Steve Jobs (Noah Wyle) and Microsoft's Bill Gates (Anthony Michael Hall). Both actors nail their characters, with Wyle's portrayal of Jobs being so good he was invited to reprise it at the opening of the MacWorld convention. The film also marks a stunning comeback for Hall, who would soon go from a 1980s has-been to the star of the popular drama ''The Dead Zone. My only gripe is that in framing the history of the PC industry around these two figures, it simplifies the story and eliminates other key figures. For a wider history, pick up the book ''Fire In the Valley,'' which served as the factual basis for ''Pirates.''

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    IF YOU LOVE COMPUTERS, YOU'LL LOVE THIS HISTORY OF SILICON VALLEY!

    BACK TO OUR ROOTS! For anyone who owns a computer and appreciates how far we've come with the Internet and all, this movie is a MUST! ––– It's fascinating material about the history of Apple and Microsoft too. ––– And if you love Silicon Valley, you might want to try a young adult book that's geared towards adults, too: THE TOONIES INVADE SILICON VALLEY. It's part satire, and stars Steve Wozniak romping around the VALLEY with the TOONIES who escape from the computer (WHERE ELSE!), helping the good TOONIES capture the bad ones who have taken over ORANGE Computer Co. A fun romp with a lot of action and a lot of humor. –––

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2004

    great movie

    i was surpised to see a tv movie that was actually great. very entertaining, informative, and dramatic!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 7, 2001

    Good pick you up!

    After watching this move you will not only how it happened, but it gives you a little faith in yourself. It shows every level in life from the bottom to the top and all the battles in-between. I think it is a good movie for everyone Even if you don't like computers. I give this movie three tumbs up. ''A must see move.''

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews