To Live and Die in L.A.

( 3 )


The films of director William Friedkin have gone from the highs of The French Connection to the lows of Cruising. Fortunately, To Live and Die in L.A. ranks as one of his better efforts, and this special edition DVD is a perfect accompaniment. The 1.85:1 transfer, enhanced for 16 x 9 televisions, is far better than expected. It's obvious that some restoration work has been done here, as is evident by the limited number of scratches and grain and the exceptional recreation of color and detail. The grime and ...
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The films of director William Friedkin have gone from the highs of The French Connection to the lows of Cruising. Fortunately, To Live and Die in L.A. ranks as one of his better efforts, and this special edition DVD is a perfect accompaniment. The 1.85:1 transfer, enhanced for 16 x 9 televisions, is far better than expected. It's obvious that some restoration work has been done here, as is evident by the limited number of scratches and grain and the exceptional recreation of color and detail. The grime and glitter of Los Angeles are captured flawlessly on this disc. The sound is equally impressive. Using a 5.1 Dolby Digital track, the surrounds aren't as prevalent as would be hoped, but the overall audio scheme is full and clear, including the dialogue and sound effects. While possibly a bit dated, the music from '80s new wave group Wang Chung is also very powerful with strong bass lines. As mentioned, this is a special edition, so the supplements are far above average. Friedkin provides another commentary track, and while it's only partly scene-specific, he's always engaging to listen to, and provides plenty of anecdotal information. Though some details are repeated in the documentary "Counterfeit World: The Making of To Live and Die in L.A.," this piece is exceptional in every way. Friedkin, stars William Petersen, Willem Dafoe,John Pankow, and numerous other key personal, recall this fast-paced production, along with plenty of behind-the-scenes shots. Real finds are a deleted scene and an alternate ending, both which can be viewed with or without a brief introduction. The deleted scene is excellent and could easily have fit in the film, but the different ending is so out of place that the inclusion here is fine, but would have been horrible for the movie. To finish things off, a decent photo gallery has been included, in addition to a trailer and teaser for this film and trailers for La Femme Nikita, Fargo, and Dark Blue.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Deleted scene and alternate ending featurettes; "Counterfeit World: The Making of to Live and Die in L.A." documentary; Audio commentary by director William Friedkin; Photo gallery; Original theatrical trailers
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
This gritty, stylish thriller, made in 1985, did for Los Angeles what Miami Vice did for that outwardly glamorous and appealing metropolis: exposed its corrupt and repellent underside. At the time of its theatrical release, To Live and Die… set a new benchmark for urban-cop dramas; many critics were appalled by its graphic language, the brutality of its violent action scenes, and its underlying nihilism. But they generally liked William Petersen -- today the star of CSI, TV’s top drama, but then just establishing himself as an edgy leading man -- who portrays a dogged Secret Service agent obsessed with nailing the ruthless counterfeiter Willem Dafoe, in his best role up to that time responsible for killing his partner. Director William Friedkin rather self-consciously imposed upon the film a peculiar, hyper-realistic style that has proven highly influential. His characters often behave unbelievably, even foolishly, but their actions seem perfectly reasonable and acceptable within the context of the story. A well-staged, brilliantly edited car chase harkens back to Friedkin’s French Connection, and that’s just one of the action highlights in this fast-paced two hours. Although To Live and Die… remains firmly rooted in its ‘80s time frame an air reinforced by the Wang Chung score, it offers a driving pace and visceral impact that audiences have come to expect from violent urban melodramas.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 12/2/2003
  • UPC: 027616886453
  • Original Release: 1985
  • Rating:

  • Source: Fox Searchlight
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Theatre Wide-Screen (1.85.1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Mono, Dolby Digital Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Language: English, Français, Español
  • Time: 1:56:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 10,596

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
William Petersen Richard Chance
Willem Dafoe Eric Masters
John Pankow John Vukovich
Debra Feuer Bianca Torres
John Turturro Carl Cody
Darlanne Fluegel Ruth Lanier
Dean Stockwell Bob Grimes
Steve James Jeff Rice
Robert Downey Sr. Thomas Bateman
Michael Greene Jim Hart
Christopher Allport Max Waxman
Jack Hoar Jack
Valentin de Vargas Judge Filo Cedillo
Dwier Brown Doctor
Michael Chong Thomas Ling
Jackelyn Giroux Claudia Leith
Bobby Bass FBI Agent
Anne Betancourt Nurse
Brian Bradley Tourist
Gerald H. Brownlee Visiting Room Guard
Jack Cota Agent
Rick Dalton Agent
Gregg G. Dandridge Prison Assailant
Thomas F. Duffy Second Agent
David M. DuFriend Tower Guard
Joe Duran Prison Guard
Gilbert Espinoza Utro's bartender
Ruben Garcia Inmate Ruben
Mark Gash Himself
Edward Harrell airport guard
Earnest Hart Jr. Rice's Friend
Richard L. Lane Agent
Katherine M. Louie Ticket Agent
Bufort L. McClerkins Jr. prison assailant
Pat McGroarty Criminal
John Petievich Agent
Dar Robinson FBI Agent
Shirley J. White Airline Passenger
Donny Williams Rice's Friend
Michael Zand Terrorist
Technical Credits
William Friedkin Director, Screenwriter
Bobby Bass Stunts
Linda M. Bass Costumes/Costume Designer
Billy Bates Stunts
Kenny Bates Stunts
Jophery Brown Stunts
Billy Burton Stunts
John Casino Stunts
Phil Chong Stunts
Buddy Cone Production Designer
Phil Corey Special Effects
Wally Crowder Stunts
Steve M. Davison Stunts
Tim A. Davison Stunts
Jeff Dawn Makeup
Justin Derosa Stunts
Eddy Donno Stunts
Doc Duhame Stunts
David R. Ellis Stunts
Kenny Endoso Stunts
James M. Halty Stunts
Buddy Joe Hooker Stunts
Thomas Huff Stunts
J.Paul Huntsman Sound Editor
Gary Hymes Stunts
Lamont Jackson Stunts
Loren Janes Stunts
Pat E. Johnson Stunts
Matt Johnson Stunts
Lilly Kilvert Production Designer
Henry Kingi Stunts
Irving H. Levin Producer
Billy Lucas Stunts
Pat McGroarty Stunts
Gary McLarty Stunts
John Meier Stunts
Robby Müller Cinematographer
Jim Nickerson Stunts
Manny Perry Stunts
Gerald Petievich Screenwriter
Jon Conrad Pochron Stunts
Chad Randall Stunts
Danny Rogers Stunts
Patrick Romano Stunts
R.A. Rondell Stunts
Cricket Rowland Set Decoration/Design
Samuel Schulman Executive Producer
Bud Smith Co-producer, Editor
Scott Smith Editor
John J. Smith Production Manager
Wang Chung Score Composer
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. "I'm Ready to Die!"
2. Main Title/Credits
3. Burning Art/Retirement
4. Money Laundering
5. Wrong Place, Wrong Time
6. Too Late
7. The New Parter
8. Arresting a Mule
9. "Don't Forget About Me"
10. Seeking Council
11. Unmasking a Problem
12. Compromising Position
13. Crime Scene Evidence
14. A Brush With Intimacy
15. Chasing Down Leads
16. A Neighborhood Deal
17. No Rat & No Pigeon
18. "Suck on This!"
19. Springing a Creep
20. Working Out a Scam
21. Stripping Away Clues
22. Picking Up a Package
23. A Jamming Ride
24. "I'm Worried!"
25. Face-Off
26. Legal Council
27. It's Payback Time
28. "I Can't Live With This!"
29. A Stinger Gets Stung
30. Up in Flames
31. Taking Chance's Place
32. End Credits
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Side #1 --
   Special Features
      Audio Commentary By Director William Friedkin: On
      Audio Commentary By Director William Friedkin: Off
      Counterfeit World: "The Making of To Live or Die in L.A."
      Alternate Ending Featurette
      Alternate Ending Only
      Deleted Scene Featurette
      Deleted Scene Only
      Stills Gallery
         View Gallery
      Theatrical Trailers
         Theatrical Trailer
         Teaser Trailer
         Other Great MGM Releases
            MGM Means Great Movies Trailer
            Femme Nikita - Watch Trailer
            Fargo - Watch Trailer
            Dark Blue - Watch Trailer
            More Great MGM Releases
      Spoken Languages: English 5.1 Surround
      Spoken Languages: Français Stereo Surround
      Spoken Languages: Español Mono
      Subtitles: English
      Subtitles: Français
      Subtitles: Español
      Subtitles: None
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 30, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Good movie!

    Well it was and is good one of those action movies i happend to like it! pretty good movie!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010


    One of the best film soundtracks of the last 10 or 50 years can be found here. Wang Chung's ultra-80's score bolsters one of the best crime dramas from that decade. William Friedkin knows cop films, he knows formula and he seldom screws up. He's at his best here with a lightening speed tale of vengence and self destruction on both sides of the law on the seemy side of Los Angeles. Great work by William L. Petersen, Wilem DaFoe and Dean Stockwell and a supporting cast of perfection in important key small roles. A modern classic.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 24, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews