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Singing Detective
     

The Singing Detective

4.5 2
Director: Keith Gordon,

Cast: Keith Gordon, Robert Downey Jr., Robin Wright, Mel Gibson

 

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Dennis Potter's groundbreaking musical drama for television was brought to the big screen in this movie adaptation, which has been given a straightforward presentation on DVD. The Singing Detective has been transferred to disc in letterboxed format at the widescreen aspect ratio of 1.78:1, which has been enhanced for anamorphic playback on 16 x 9 monitors. The

Overview

Dennis Potter's groundbreaking musical drama for television was brought to the big screen in this movie adaptation, which has been given a straightforward presentation on DVD. The Singing Detective has been transferred to disc in letterboxed format at the widescreen aspect ratio of 1.78:1, which has been enhanced for anamorphic playback on 16 x 9 monitors. The English-language soundtrack has been presented in two audio options, Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Digital Surround. Optional English subtitles have been included, but no multiple language options are available. A commentary track from director Keith Gordon appears as a bonus.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
A pulp-fiction writer seeks temporary escape from a painful skin condition by retreating to the more appealing world he inhabits in his mind: So went Dennis Potter’s celebrated 1986 miniseries, and so goes this feature-length adaptation of the material, penned by Potter himself. And while it is not a transforming work in the manner of the original, the theatrical Singing Detective stands on its own as a fascinating piece of cinema. Suffering intensely from an extreme, body-covering case of psoriasis, Dan Dark (Robert Downey Jr.) roams an imaginary, film noir landscape, running into colorful characters adapted from people he has known -- and resented -- in real life, among them his cheating wife (Robin Wright Penn) and domineering mother (Carla Gugino). Dark is, of course, the hard-boiled hero of this fantasy world, which is also apt to erupt at any given moment into a colorful, choreographed musical number populated by members of the hospital staff or the visitors venturing into his room. Short-tempered and abusive, he endures painful treatments that offer no relief and little chance for improvement. Downey is a marvel as Dark; his own life experience has perhaps given him special insight into a character whose all-consuming anger and constant suffering has forced him to abandon reality in favor of a dreamlike existence with which he feels more comfortable. The Singing Detective isn't an easily classifiable movie: it's not a musical, it's not a drama, it's not a crime story, and it's certainly not a comedy. And yet it contains elements of all these, and more. Actor-turned-director Keith Gordon has always eschewed escapist film fare, and his passion for offbeat subjects and stories is plainly evident in his innovative handling of this bizarre material. He has assembled an all-star cast that also includes Mel Gibson, Jeremy Northam, Adrien Brody, and Katie Holmes -- and all of them are superb. Sadly, Potter died before the project reached completion, yet his legacy proudly lives on in this curiously satisfying movie.
Entertainment Weekly - Lisa Schwarzbaum
Robert Downey Jr. is great in a role no one less magnetically reckless would dare approach.
Variety
Potter's genius for wrapping black humor, poignancy and fantasy in utterly original story concepts lends this Detective an immediate fascination that doesn't begin wearing off for some time. Dennis Harvey
New York Post - Jonathan Foreman
It is worth catching The Singing Detective to see the brilliant Robert Downey Jr. in another extraordinary performance.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/23/2004
UPC:
0097363409045
Original Release:
2003
Rating:
R
Source:
Paramount
Region Code:
1
Sound:
[Dolby Digital Surround, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Time:
1:48:00

Special Features

Closed Caption; Commentary by director Keith Gordon; Trailers

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Robert Downey Dan Dark
Robin Wright Nicola,Nina,Blonde
Mel Gibson Dr. Gibbon
Jeremy Northam Mark Binney
Katie Holmes Nurse Mills
Adrien Brody First Hood
Jon Polito Second Hood
Carla Gugino Betty Dark,Hooker
Saul Rubinek Skin Specialist
Alfre Woodard Chief of Staff
Amy Aquino Actor
David Dorfman Actor
Eddie Jones Actor
Lily Knight Actor
Clyde Kusatsu Actor
Earl C. Poitier Actor
Don Fischer Actor
Andy Umberger Actor
David Denman Actor

Technical Credits
Keith Gordon Director
Jan K. Bergstrom Set Decoration/Design
Denise Chamian Casting
Bruce Davey Producer
Mel Gibson Producer
Steven Haft Producer
Eric Heffron Asst. Director
Marc Jacquier Choreography
Kevin Lake Associate Producer
Bill Landrum Choreography
James LeBrecht Sound/Sound Designer
Pat Norris Costumes/Costume Designer,Production Designer
John Nutt Sound/Sound Designer
Jane Potter Co-producer
Sarah Potter Co-producer
Robert Potter Co-producer
Dennis Potter Screenwriter
Tom Richmond Cinematographer
Ken Weiss Musical Direction/Supervision
Jeff Wishengrad Editor
Stan Wlodkowski Executive Producer

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Café Moonglow [6:41]
2. Doctors and Nurses [6:46]
3. No Tranquilizers [:51]
4. Boring Thoughts [5:39]
5. A Book Filled with Clues [4:32]
6. Poisons of the Mind [4:50]
7. Childhood [3:52]
8. Disruptive [:24]
9. Progress [5:20]
10. Screenplay in Shoeboxes [2:26]
11. Attempted Assassination [3:58]
12. Cheap Fiction [5:19]
13. Word Games [:16]
14. Examining the Past [3:05]
15. The Enemy [3:57]
16. Two Goons [:09]
17. Dance with the Doctor [:08]
18. True Identity [6:29]
19. Unfinished Ending [4:34]
20. The Warbler [2:10]

Videos

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The Singing Detective 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was intrigued with this movie. I don't know how to describe it, but it was a good movie with a different twist to it. Mel Gibson's part was quiet different from what you are used to seeing him play and Downey was great.