League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

3.8 39
Director: Steve Norrington

Cast: Sean Connery, Shane West, Stuart Townsend


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The underwhelming League of Extraordinary Gentlemen makes its way to home theaters with 20th Century Fox's widescreen edition DVD. With its brilliant 2.35:1 picture and 5.1 Dolby Surround Sound, the disc is nothing short of spectacular as it showcases the film's glorious production values and lush levels of sound design. Though technically splendid, the extras,See more details below


The underwhelming League of Extraordinary Gentlemen makes its way to home theaters with 20th Century Fox's widescreen edition DVD. With its brilliant 2.35:1 picture and 5.1 Dolby Surround Sound, the disc is nothing short of spectacular as it showcases the film's glorious production values and lush levels of sound design. Though technically splendid, the extras, on the other hand, tend to be a bit of a let down. The disc is fairly loaded with bonus features that give the viewer a nice overview of the production, but with no juicy mentions of the widely publicized spats between star Sean Connery and director Stephen Norrington (which ended in the screen legend literally taking over the editing room in the final stages), the overtly positive "spin" on the behind-the-scenes work becomes more than questionable. Still, for a film that is mostly known for its eye candy, the detailed sections on the rest of the production make for some fine coverage of the artisans behind the camera. Split into three different areas, the disc's special features include six featurettes in the Assembling the League section, 12 deleted and extended scenes in the Deleted Scenes area, and two full-length audio commentary tracks in the Commentaries section. At almost an hour in total length, the featurettes cover everything from Jackie West's costuming to the film's miniature work, with equal time also given to the producer's link to the comic's originator, Alan Moore (their second adaptation after From Hell). The best of the bunch details Steve Johnson's incredible makeup effects that helped realize original artist Kevin O'Neill's hulking vision of Mr. Hyde, played by Jason Flemyng. The British actor can also be found joking around with the Invisible Man himself, Tony Curran, on the first of two commentary tracks. Sadly, Curran's hilarious Sean Connery impersonations are interrupted time and time again by producer Don Murphy's obnoxious outbursts at the fans that questioned some of the more ridiculous story line changes (courtesy of the track's intercutting of three separate recordings from the film's two producers and actor Shane West). There aren't too many great producer commentaries out there and Murphy goes a long way here to prove to you why. The second track is a technical commentary consisting of a costume/makeup/visual effects tag team track, most of which lengthily expands on the behind-the-scenes talk in the featurettes. Finally, the disc presents a wealth of deleted and extended scenes, though there's no sign anywhere of the more graphic scenes Norrington was forced to cut to get the PG-13 rating. Considering the film's poor box office, it's understandable that the studio would want to put out a more family-friendly disc, so it seems the original vision of the film (and the story behind it) will have to wait for another edition. In the meantime, you get a pristine presentation of the theatrical cut and some nice behind-the-scenes production work with this release.

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
Extraordinary indeed! This rousing action-adventure film, steeped in the traditions of those grand old Saturday-matinee cliff-hangers, employs an audacious concept devised by graphic-novel writer Alan Moore: the uniting of memorable characters from Victorian-era fiction against an unseen and powerful adversary. The 20th century is just dawning when emissaries of the British government round up legendary adventurer Allan Quartermain (Sean Connery), rogue submariner Captain Nemo (Naseeruddin Shah), twisted genius Dr. Jekyll (Jason Flemyng), dapper but dangerous Dorian Gray (Stuart Townsend), and a grown-up Tom Sawyer (Shane West), along with mysterious Mina Harker (Peta Wilson), whose prior acquaintances have included one Count Dracula. They are offered various rewards and immunities to combat "The Fantom," whose technologically advanced, multinational crimes are calculated to turn the countries of Europe against each other and spark a Continent-wide conflagration. As you might imagine, this mission provides ample opportunities for outrageous feats of derring-do and the use of some very peculiar talents. There's hardly a single incident in League that isn't wildly improbable at the very least, but director Stephen Norrington (Blade) stages the action flamboyantly and imbues the venture with a disarming, tongue-in-cheek sensibility. The septuagenarian Connery still makes an amazingly robust hero, and he's given strong support by less well known but remarkably capable performers. Shah's terrific Captain Nemo is portrayed as the resourceful, dignified, and enigmatic Easterner created by Jules Verne but depicted inaccurately in most movie versions of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and its sequel, The Mysterious Island. For all the time, money, and effort that went into its production, League is, to its credit, a movie utterly without pretension; it aspires to be nothing but escapist entertainment, and in that it succeeds admirably.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
20th Century Fox
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Actor and producer commentaries with Trevor Albert, Jason Flemyng, and Tony Curran; a visual-effects commentary by production designer Carol Spier, costume designer Jacqueline West, members of the make-up and visual-effects crews, and the miniatures creators; a making-of featurette; 12 deleted scenes; more.

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Sean Connery Allan Quatermain
Shane West Tom Sawyer
Stuart Townsend Dorian Gray
Richard Roxburgh M
Peta Wilson Mina Harker (nee Murray)
Tony Curran Rodney Skinner, AKA The Invisible Man
Jason Flemyng Dr. Henry Jekyll/Edward Hyde
Naseeruddin Shah Captain Nemo
David Hemmings Nigel
Max Ryan Dante
Tom Goodman-Hill Sanderson Reed

Technical Credits
Steve Norrington Director
Trevor Albert Producer
Patrick Banister Set Decoration/Design
David Baxa Set Decoration/Design
Rick Benattar Associate Producer
Michel Cheyko Asst. Director
K.C. Colwell Asst. Director
Sean Connery Executive Producer
Elinor Rose Galbraith Art Director
Stephan O. Gessler Set Decoration/Design
Mark Gordon Executive Producer
Mark Holding Sound/Sound Designer
Industrial Light & Magic Special Effects
Donna Isaacson Casting
Trevor Jones Score Composer
Jason Knox-Johnston Set Decoration/Design
Jindrich Koci Art Director
Milena Koubkova Set Decoration/Design
Dan Laustsen Cinematographer
Gordon Lebredt Set Decoration/Design
James McAteer Art Director
Don Murphy Producer
New Deal Studios Incorporated Cinematographer
Peter P. Nicolakakos Set Decoration/Design
James Dale Robinson Screenwriter
Marco Bittner Rosser Art Director
Paul Rubell Editor
Carol Spier Production Designer
Jan Svoboda Set Decoration/Design
Lucinda Syson Casting
Andy Thomson Set Decoration/Design
James F. Truesdale Art Director
Grant Van Der Slagt Set Decoration/Design
Jacqueline West Costumes/Costume Designer
Gordon White Set Decoration/Design
David Wood Set Decoration/Design

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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. On the Brink of War (Main Titles)
2. Quatermain
3. Armored Assassins
4. The New League
5. Mr. Dorian Gray
6. The Fantom
7. Mrs. Harker's Conduct
8. The American Agent
9. The Last Member
10. Out of His League
11. Voyage to Violence
12. The Shooting Lesson
13. The Portrait
14. Death in Venice
15. Behind the Mask
16. Betrayed
17. The Game Is Over
18. Hyde the Hero
19. The Message
20. Waiting for Skinner
21. A Fortress Vast
22. The Game Is On
23. The Napoleon of Crime
24. A Woman's Wrath
25. Invisible Enemy
26. Meet Your Demon
27. The Dante Beast
28. Killing the Future
29. The Long Shot
30. A Hero's Bequest
31. The Flame of Life
32. End Titles


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