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Tales of the City: Complete Set
     

Tales of the City: Complete Set

5.0 2
Director: Alastair Reid, Laura Linney, Olympia Dukakis, Bill Campbell

Cast: Alastair Reid, Laura Linney, Olympia Dukakis, Bill Campbell

 

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Author Armistead Maupin's serialized tale of sexual infidelity and identity in 1970s San Francisco becomes a sprawling comic melodrama in this much-acclaimed miniseries. Produced by PBS and Britain's Channel 4, Tales of the City covers in its five hours the interlocking stories of more than a dozen main characters, many of whom reside at 28 Barbary Lane, a

Overview

Author Armistead Maupin's serialized tale of sexual infidelity and identity in 1970s San Francisco becomes a sprawling comic melodrama in this much-acclaimed miniseries. Produced by PBS and Britain's Channel 4, Tales of the City covers in its five hours the interlocking stories of more than a dozen main characters, many of whom reside at 28 Barbary Lane, a quaint multi-apartment house overseen by the open-minded but enigmatic Mrs. Madrigal (Olympia Dukakis). Among her stable of residents are the acerbic, unlucky-in-love Mona Ramsey (Chloe Webb) and her occasional roommate Michael Tolliver (Marcus D'Amico), who's her constant companion -- that is, when he's not shacked up with one of an endless series of short-term boyfriends. Mrs. Madrigal's newest charge is the apple-cheeked Mary Ann Singleton (Laura Linney), a naïve young woman from the Midwest who's come to San Francisco to visit her friend Connie (Parker Posey), but ends up staying, in search of both a career and a husband. It isn't long before she finds the former; unfortunately, along with it comes the unwanted advances of her boss Beauchamp Day (Thomas Gibson), a philandering executive unhappily married to his boss Edgar's daughter, DeDe (Barbara Garrick). Meanwhile, the regal Edgar (Donald Moffat) happens to be conducting an affair of his own with none other than Mrs. Madrigal. Also starring Bill Campbell and Paul Gross, Tales of the City was first aired on Channel 4 in the spring of 1993 and made its PBS premiere in the winter of 1994, when it garnered some of the network's highest ratings ever, amidst vocal protest of the show's risqué content.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Peter Marchand
Welcome to 28 Barbary Lane. You’ll want to stay a while. From the moment in 1976 when Cleveland ingénue MaryAnn Singleton (a then-unknown Laura Linney) settles into San Francisco’s quirkiest address, there’s no option but to be utterly drawn into all five hours of this vividly entertaining miniseries. Looking through MaryAnn’s eyes into the kaleidoscopic world of the five other Barbary tenants, we see not just an apartment complex that makes Melrose Place look like Sesame Street but a counterculture that bloomed between the Summer of Love and the winter of AIDS. Openly looking at homosexuality, rampant drug use, and sexual promiscuity, the six episodes intimately and honestly celebrate the era's experimentation while embracing the timeless human quests for love and identity. The cast brilliantly brings to life Armistead Maupin’s literary creations, born in his mid-'70s San Francisco Chronicle columns and later collected in six Tales of the City books. The performances are uniformly good: Linney (You Can Count On Me) captures the time’s innocence lost; Chloe Webb embodies eccentricity as Mona Ramsey; and a divine Olympia Dukakis (Moonstruck) is the series' soul as the mysterious, motherly landlord, Mrs. Madrigal, taping homegrown "Welcome" joints above newcomers’ doors. (Also keep your eyes open for notable supporting players, such as Janeane Garofalo hanging out in a bar). Genuinely funny scenes and situations abound, but there's also a romantic charm and an inescapable sadness as the characters' intertwined lives unfold. There are secrets, double-dealings, adultery, and death, yet things never devolve into soap opera. Whether it’s MaryAnn being seduced by her boss’s lecherous son (Thomas Gibson), Michael "Mouse" Tolliver (Paul Hopkins) trying to keep his homosexuality from his parents, or Mrs. Madrigal hiding her true identity, the emotion is real. You’ll be moved by this "family" as if it were your own.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/30/2013
UPC:
0054961899494
Original Release:
1993
Rating:
NR
Source:
Acorn Media
Time:
5:21:00
Sales rank:
9,279

Special Features

Audio commentaries on episodes 1, 3, and 6 with Armistead Maupin, director Alastair Reid, Olympia Dukakis, Laura Linney, and Barbara Garrick; Behind-the-scenes location and rehearsal footage (36 min.); 8-page insert with an introduction by Armistead Maupin, notes by producer Alan Poul, and filming locations and landmarks

Cast & Crew

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Tales of the City
1. Mary Ann Stays [7:06]
2. 28 Barbary Lane [9:42]
3. New Job [10:10]
4. Dinner Party [8:32]
5. A Straight Man [9:21]
6. Mouse [9:10]
1. Weekend Away [6:41]
2. Unlikely Evening [9:33]
3. Anna & Edgar [7:18]
4. Cold Shoulder [8:26]
5. Pennies in the Pot [11:04]
6. Falling for a New Man [12:26]
1. Crisis Switchboard [8:16]
2. Hey Boo [7:34]
3. An Anniversary [8:29]
4. Change for DeDe [9:14]
5. Meeting Norman Neal Williams [10:13]
6. D'orothea [9:08]
Disc #2 -- Tales of the City
1. Sunday Morning [8:39]
2. "A Woman Meant to Be Kissed Upon the Eyes" [8:12]
3. Lawyer Without a Cause [9:13]
4. Needing Security [9:49]
5. Trick or Treat? [9:00]
6. Very Old-Fashioned [7:33]
1. Not On the Menu [10:08]
2. Asking Questions [7:30]
3. DeDe's Blackmail [8:16]
4. Happy Birthday, Norman [9:53]
5. Cruising [9:34]
6. Climbing a Mountain [6:27]
1. Prepping for Christmas [8:24]
2. Mr. Wilson [9:48]
3. Mary Ann Snoops [9:48]
4. Meetings [9:34]
5. Christmas Eve [10:52]
6. The Accident [4:05]

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Tales of the City 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
After reading the Tales of the City book city series, I just had to have the the dvd series. Unlike most movies that come out after the books have been out, i find that the dvd series did the books justice. The dvds tackle the same issues that are in the book, which is uncomon in most cases in other book series. Both the dvds and the books are worth the money.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first saw Tales of the City on PBS. I applauded them for being brave enough to even show the edited version. It was still considered controversial as too many folks think that if something isn't shown on TV that it actually will go away or change. The situations and stories told here have been going on since the begining of time. They'll be going on when this generation is gone. This is an intellegent look into many facets of sexuality in society. In addition to telling the story of many folks that live in a apartment building on Barbary Lane...It's well written (so is the book, even though this started out as a serial in a San Fransciso newspaper) with a great cast, set, setting and production. This is an incredible fisheye look at the liberal climate of San Francisco in the 1970's and great entertainment too boot. The sequels are well worth the watch too. A must for any film collectors library.