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Spider
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Spider

Director: David Cronenberg, Ralph Fiennes, Miranda Richardson, Gabriel Byrne

Cast: David Cronenberg, Ralph Fiennes, Miranda Richardson, Gabriel Byrne

 
David Cronenberg's disturbing psychological drama Spider comes to DVD from Columbia Tri Star presented with a widescreen anamorphic transfer and Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound in English. English subtitles and closed captions are available. The special features start off with a feature-length commentary track by director David Cronenberg. He also hosts the

Overview

David Cronenberg's disturbing psychological drama Spider comes to DVD from Columbia Tri Star presented with a widescreen anamorphic transfer and Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound in English. English subtitles and closed captions are available. The special features start off with a feature-length commentary track by director David Cronenberg. He also hosts the bulk of the three featurettes exploring the making of the film. "In the Beginning: How Spider Came to Be" is an eight-minute segment about the process of bringing the original text to the screen and the difficulties of making a Canada/U.K. co-production; it includes comments from writer Patrick McGrath, producer Catherine Bailey, and actress Miranda Richardson. "Weaving the Web: The Making of Spider" is a nine-minute segment about the actual shooting of several key scenes; it includes comments from cast members Gabriel Byrne, Lynn Redgrave, and Ralph Fiennes. "Caught in Spider's Web: The Cast" is a 12-minute discussion about the casting with Ralph Fiennes, Miranda Richardson, and Gabriel Byrne. Finally, there are theatrical trailers for Spider, Adaptation, Punch-Drunk Love, and The Devil's Backbone. This is a welcome DVD for an award-winning film that only received a limited theatrical release in the U.S.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Gregory Baird
A mysterious space between memory and confabulation opens wide in Spider, a skillfully austere psychodrama from Canadian filmmaker David Cronenberg. Adapted from the novel by Patrick McGrath, who also wrote the screenplay, Spider follows Cleg (Ralph Fiennes), a.k.a. Spider, who arrives at an English halfway house after a stint in a mental institution. Upon release, Cleg experiences disturbing flashbacks of his childhood with his mother (Miranda Richardson) and father (Gabriel Byrne) that inevitably lead to paranoia and violence. Despite the story's emotional depths, Cronenberg manages to cut a clear path with his typically clean, uncluttered style. The spare realization -- shooting on a minimum of sets and with as few extras as necessary -- strengthens the story's psychodramatic quagmire. And as Spider, Fiennes anchors the film superbly: His tensed-muscled approach effectively suggests internal struggle amid incessant mumbling and methodical scribbling in a notebook. The result is a genre movie that trades quick thrills for a cumulative effect that is consummately intense, eerie, and hypnotic.
All Movie Guide - Mark Deming
David Cronenberg is a filmmaker so full of ideas that he sometimes seems to have trouble coming up with a narrative framework which will support them all; at times Videodrome and eXistenZ seemed to exist more for the sake of their subtexts rather than their principle story lines. But while Spider is one of his most powerful and compelling voyages into the human psyche, it's also a rare example of a film where Cronenberg doesn't seem to have quite enough material to flesh out a full-length feature. Ralph Fiennes gives an riveting performance as the emotionally damaged Spider, but so much time is spent watching Fiennes silently wrestle with the horrible memories in his head that one senses this is a brilliant one-hour film stretched to fit 99 minutes; it's a testament to the strength of Fiennes' work that he's able to make so many scenes in which he's not doing much of anything so absorbing. But the material in Spider that works ranks with the best realized moments in Cronenberg's career: He handles his cast beautifully (Miranda Richardson, Gabriel Byrne, and Lynn Redgrave all deliver top-shelf performances), his vision of a gray and crumbling England trapped somewhere in time is superb, and the remarkably detailed flashbacks of Spider's blighted childhood are at once painful and mesmerizing. Spider is a flawed film, but one well worth watching; even its lesser moments are too strong to dismiss, and the highlights are at once horrible, honest, and deeply human.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/29/2003
UPC:
0043396003736
Original Release:
2002
Rating:
R
Source:
Sony Pictures
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Time:
1:38:00

Special Features

Closed Caption; Filmmaker's commentary; "In the Beginning: How Spider Came to Be" featurette; "Weaving the Web: The Making of Spider" featurette; "Caught in Spider's Web: The Cast" featurette; Filmographies; Web link to official website; Bonus trailers

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Ralph Fiennes Spider
Miranda Richardson Mrs. Cleg,Mrs. Wilkinson,Yvonne
Gabriel Byrne Bill Cleg
Bradley Hall Young Spider
Lynn Redgrave Mrs. Wilkinson
John Neville Terrence
Gary Reineke Freddy
Philip Craig John

Technical Credits
David Cronenberg Director,Producer
Maria Aitken Associate Producer
Catherine Bailey Producer
Jane Barclay Executive Producer
Sanjay Burnam Associate Producer
Christian Cooke Sound/Sound Designer
Denise Cronenberg Costumes/Costume Designer
Tony Currie Sound Editor
David Evans Sound Editor
Charles Finch Executive Producer
Simon Franks Executive Producer
Walter Gasparovic Asst. Director
Glen Gauthier Sound/Sound Designer
Arvinder Grewal Art Director
Wayne Griffin Sound Editor
Samuel Hadida Producer
Victor Hadida Executive Producer
Sharon Harel Executive Producer
Zygi Kamasa Executive Producer
Martin F. Katz Executive Producer
Goro Koyama Sound Editor
Hannah Leader Executive Producer
Andy Malcolm Sound Editor
Patrick McGrath Screenwriter
Luc Roeg Executive Producer
Andrew Sanders Production Designer
Ronald Sanders Editor
Howard Shore Score Composer
Suzanne Smith Casting
Peter Suschitzky Cinematographer
Orest Sushko Sound/Sound Designer
Don White Sound/Sound Designer

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Start
2. Spider Cleg
3. Mrs. Wilkinson
4. Terrence
5. Spider's Room
6. Breakfast Thoughts
7. "Are You Making Progress?"
8. Spider's Journal
9. A Look into the Past
10. The Dog & Beggar
11. Tales of Silken Webs
12. Trouble With Her Pipes
13. Yvonne's Handiwork
14. "Gas. Smell Gas."
15. Trysting Place
16. Looking for Bill
17. Out With the Old
18. In With the New
19. "I Am Not A Spaniard!"
20. The Missing Shard
21. "Murderer!"
22. A Word With Dennis
23. Mother Everywhere
24. Spider's Web
25. "I'm Missing A Set of Keys."
26. About to Get Hammered
27. "You Murdered Your Mum."
28. Back to the Asylum

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