The Death of Klinghoffer

( 1 )


The Death of Klinghoffer is a cinematic adaptation of the opera of the same name. The film concerns the infamous 1985 hijacking of the Achille Lauro, an event that brought about the death of a passenger named Leon Klinghoffer. Penny Woolcock directed this adaptation.
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The Death of Klinghoffer is a cinematic adaptation of the opera of the same name. The film concerns the infamous 1985 hijacking of the Achille Lauro, an event that brought about the death of a passenger named Leon Klinghoffer. Penny Woolcock directed this adaptation.
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Special Features

Filming "The Death of Klinghoffer" (47 mins), an in-depth insight into the conception of the film, including exclusive interview footage with John Adams and Penny Woolcock; Director's commentary: Penny Woolcock, with Yvonne Howard, Christopher Maltman and Tom Randle
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/11/2003
  • UPC: 044007418994
  • Original Release: 2002
  • Source: Philips
  • Region Code: 0
  • Aspect Ratio: Alternate Wide Screen (1.78:1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:59:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 60,584

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Sanford Sylvan Leon Klinghoffer
Christopher Maltman Captain
Yvonne Howard
Tom Randle
Kamel Boutros Mamoud
Vivian Tierney
Leigh Melrose
Emil Marwa
Susan Bickley
Dean Robinson
Kirsten Blase
Nuala Willis
Technical Credits
Penny Woolcock Director, Screenwriter
Claire Anderson Costumes/Costume Designer
Madonna Baptiste Producer
John Ellis Production Designer
Tim Handley Sound/Sound Designer
Mike Hatch Sound/Sound Designer
John Adams Score Composer
John Berry Casting
Clarence Jones Makeup
Clare Jones Makeup
Nadira Seecoomar Casting
Graham Smith Cinematographer
Brand Thumim Editor
Jan Youngshusband Executive Producer
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Commissioning the Film [2:55]
2. From Libretto to Screenplay [5:35]
3. Making Cuts [3:05]
4. The Budget [:59]
5. Rehearsals, Sept. 11, 2001 [3:22]
6. Locations [1:56]
7. Singing Live on Location [8:07]
8. Singing for John Adams [4:19]
9. Setting of Text [4:36]
10. Omar [3:41]
11. Opera Singers Acting [3:17]
12. Editing Opera [1:40]
13. Contemporary Opera [2:17]
14. Closing Credits [:19]
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Side #1 --
   Play Film
   Select Act
      Act 1, Scene 1
      Act 1, Scene 2
      Act 2, Scene 1
      Act 2, Scene 2
      Act 2, Scene 3
   The Filming Of
      Documentary Scene Index
      Play Documentary
   Disc Set-Up
      Subtitle Options: English
      Subtitle Options: French
      Subtitle Options: German
      Subtitle Options: Italian
      Subtitle Options: Spanish
      Subtitle Options: None
      Audio Options: Dolby Digital Stereo
      Audio Options: Dolby Digital 5.1
      Audio Options: Commentary
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 1 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Don't expect the opera. Expect a great film.

    John Adams did not intend his opera 'The Death of Klinghoffer' to be an action oriented story. He worked closely with Alice Goodman to combine her libretto with his own sensitive text painting to create a drama based on the character's minds and motivations, not on their actions. The opera's slow pacing is perfect for the audience to contemplate the deep ramifications of what is being sung on stage. The film version retains very little of the original character, but it remains an effective adaptation. In the filmed version, Penny Woolcock focuses on relaying the event of the libretto over top of John Adam's music. By including character development during the choral pieces and relaying action during arias, she is able to communicate much more than what Adams originally intended. Is this a good thing? It all depends on what you are looking for. If you are looking for an uncut, 'authorized', version of the staged opera, you will probably be disappointed in this film. There are some strategic cuts (a couple of choruses most notably), and as discussed before, the drama is now more focused on the action than on character. I believe this film is a wonderful way to enjoy this opera though. The montage sequences add even more depth to the central struggle of Jew vs. Palestine at the core of the opera. The live performances give the characters and their arias a great deal of intensity that is lost in the more static world of the staged opera. Also, the cinematography is beautiful. The result is not quite an opera, and not quite a film. What is left is a valuable interpretation of Adams' opera.

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