One of modern Hollywood's most consistently controversial-- and highly regarded -- filmmakers gets the grand treatment he deserves with this collection of six of his most energetic, visceral movies. While the VHS and DVD editions both contain the same versions of each movie (and the documentary Oliver Stone's America,) there are many DVD-specific extras. Included in the set is Stone's most recent hit, Any Given Sunday, starring Al Pacino as a tired, aging football coach urged by ambitious franchise owner Cameron Diaz to spur his demoralized team to victory at any cost. The "Special Edition/Director's Cut" in this set includes six minutes of footage included in foreign prints of the film, and the double-disc DVD offers more than a dozen deleted or extended scenes, commentaries by Stone and supporting player Jamie Foxx, a behind-the-scenes documentary shot for HBO, and more. There's also a "Special Edition/Director's Cut" of JFK, Stone's most provocative film, which follows the attempts of New Orleans district attorney Jim Garrison (Kevin Costner) to prove that the assassination of John F. Kennedy was undertaken by conspirators within the government. The new digital transfer includes 17 minutes of footage excised from domestic prints, and the double-disc DVD boasts Stone's feature-length audio commentary, deleted scenes, multimedia essays updating the debate on Kennedy's assassination, cast/crew bios, and an interview with ex-government official Fletcher Prouty. Natural Born Killers, which stars Woody Harrelson, Juliette Lewis, and Robert Downey Jr., is Stone's inflammatory satire about dysfunctional miscreants whose violent excesses are eagerly chronicled by rabid media lapdogs. The DVD adds the director's Charlie Rose appearance defending the film, a documentary called "Chaos Rising," deleted scenes, an alternate ending, and extensive commentary by Stone.
The collection is rounded out by newly remastered versions of Born on the Fourth of July, Stone's scathing indictment of the Vietnam War as seen through the eyes of wounded veteran Ron Kovic (played by Tom Cruise); The Doors, his vivid fictionalization of the life and times of rock star Jim Morrison (Val Kilmer); and Wall Street, his now-legendary parable of Reagan-era greed starring Michael Douglas and Charlie Sheen. The documentary Oliver Stone's America is a comprehensive look at the director's career that includes interviews with his colleagues and rare, behind-the-scenes footage. While Stone's Oscar-winning war epic Platoon is sadly missing in the package, this sextet is a stunning reminder that Stone is perhaps our greatest chronicler of America -- a man whose films both electrify history and -- as with Natural Born Killers -- make history, too. Stone-ophiles may prefer the even heftier ten-volume box - which includes the seven titles mentioned here, plus Heaven and Earth, Nixon, Talk Radio, and U-Turn.