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Three Sisters

Overview

Part of the American Film Theatre series, Three Sisters comes to DVD from Kino International. Originally written by Anton Chekhov, this play is adapted to film by director Laurence Olivier in 1970. This DVD is presented with a widescreen transfer enhanced for 16 x 9 televisions. Special features start off with "Anton Chekhov and Three Sisters," an essay by Michael Feingold, chief theater critic at the Village Voice. Also included are the theatrical trailer, a stills gallery, and an interview with actor Alan ...
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Overview

Part of the American Film Theatre series, Three Sisters comes to DVD from Kino International. Originally written by Anton Chekhov, this play is adapted to film by director Laurence Olivier in 1970. This DVD is presented with a widescreen transfer enhanced for 16 x 9 televisions. Special features start off with "Anton Chekhov and Three Sisters," an essay by Michael Feingold, chief theater critic at the Village Voice. Also included are the theatrical trailer, a stills gallery, and an interview with actor Alan Bates. Most of the other special features are vintage American Film Theatre promotional materials, like an AFT cinebill, stills gallery, and scrapbook.
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Special Features

An interview with Alan Bates; Theatrical trailer; "Anton Chekhov and Three Sisters," an essay by Michael Feingold, Chief Theatre Critic, The Village Voice; The AFT cinebill for Three Sisters; Stills gallery; The American Film Theatre scrapbook
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Tom Wiener
It's valuable to have a screen record of Anton Chekhov's celebrated drama of dreams delayed and crushed, especially with a first-rate British cast under the direction of Laurence Olivier. After a rather stiffly played first act, the drama seems to catch fire -- no pun intended -- during the nighttime scene in which most of the male characters return from helping to put out a conflagration in the village. The third act, in the garden with the soldiers about to depart amid the impending duel between Vassili and the baron, concludes the film on a strong note. As a director, Olivier may have had only modest resources at his disposal to "open up" the action (there is one montage of scenes dreamt by Irina that take place outside the house and offer a transition from Act II to Act III), but compared to his Shakespeare trilogy (Henry V, Hamlet, and Richard III), this feels less like a drama re-imagined for the screen and too much like a photographed play. The performances are finely tuned, but none catch fire, but for one: Joan Plowright's smoldering Masha. Her exchanges with Alan Bates' Vershinin are eloquent expressions of repressed desire, and her weary sighs at the failings of almost everyone around her offer the only shades of wit in the proceedings. And she does have one scene with her real-life husband as the volatile doctor in the third act, which also sets off sparks.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/22/2003
  • UPC: 738329028923
  • Original Release: 1970
  • Rating:

  • Source: Kino Video
  • Aspect Ratio: Theatre Wide-Screen (1.85.1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Language: English
  • Time: 2:42:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 64,797

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Jeanne Watts Olga
Joan Plowright Masha
Louise Pumell Irina Prosorov
Derek Jacobi Andrei Prosorov
Kenneth Mackintosh Kulighin
Harry Lomax Ferrapont
Frank Wylie Solloni
Alan Bates Vershinin
Richard Kay Fedotik
David Belcher Lt. Bode
David Munro
George Selway Orderly
Robert Walker Jr. Officer
Daphne Heard Anfissa
Ronald Pickup Baron Tusenbach
Sheila Reid Natasha
Leonid Gallis Kulygin
Laurence Olivier Ivan Chebutikin
Technical Credits
Laurence Olivier Director, Producer
John Sichel Director
Moura Budberg Screenwriter
Timothy Burrill Associate Producer, Producer
Beatrice Dawson Costumes/Costume Designer
John Goldstone Producer
Jack Harris Editor
Gary Hughes Score Composer
Bill Hutchinson Art Director
James C. Katz Producer
Ely Landau Producer
Bob Lawrence Makeup
Phil Leakey Makeup
Simon Relph Associate Producer
Geoffrey Unsworth Cinematographer
William Walton Score Composer
Marc Wilkinson Musical Direction/Supervision
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. A Spring Afternoon [7:29]
2. An Extravagant Present [7:14]
3. Our Lives [7:08]
4. Superfluous Knowledge [10:32]
5. Irina's Birthday [5:45]
6. "How Deceptive Life Can Be" [8:35]
7. "I Love..." [8:19]
8. "Let's Philosophize" [8:33]
9. "Let's Make Peace" [8:00]
10. "Moscow, Moscow" [8:52]
11. A Cruel Natasha [7:24]
12. "Maybe I'm Not a Man at All" [9:46]
13. "You Are a Remarkable Woman" [7:59]
14. Confessions [7:48]
15. A Dream [4:50]
16. Happiness [4:11]
17. A Duel [8:08]
18. Wives [5:55]
19. "Everything Comes to an End" [10:12]
20. "Let Us Live" [7:45]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play
   Scenes
   Special Features
      An Interview With Alan Bates
      Three Sisters Theatrical Trailer
      "Anton Chekhov and Three Sisters" by Michael Feingold, Chief Theatre Critic, The Village Voice
      The AFT Cinebill for Three Sisters
         A Memorable Three Sisters
         Olivier on Chekhov and Shakespeare
         Letters From Chekhov
      Three Sisters Stills Gallery
      The American Film Theatre Scrapbook - A Collection of Articles and Essays
         A Letter From Ely Landau, Written in 1973, to Potential AFT Subscribers
         "Ely Landau Presents the American Film Theatre," an Article by Larry Gross
         An Interview With Ely Landau
         Very Nice for Us All by Edward Albee
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