Golden Compass (2-Disc Platinum Series)

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Product Overview

Based on author Philip Pullman's bestselling and award-winning novel, The Golden Compass tells the first story in Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy. The Golden Compass is an exciting fantasy adventure, set in an alternative world where people's souls manifest themselves as animals, talking bears fight wars, and Gyptians and witches co-exist. At the center of the story is Lyra (played by newcomer Dakota Blue Richards), a 12-year-old girl who starts out trying to rescue a friend who's been kidnapped by a mysterious organization known as the Gobblers - and winds up on an epic quest to save not only her world, but ours as well. The Golden Compass stars an ensemble cast that includes Nicole Kidman, Daniel Craig, Sam Elliott, and Ian McShane.

Specifications

Studio New Line
SKU 206868724
UPC 794043120435
UPC 14 00794043120435
Format DVD
Rating Rating
Keywords
Bears
Fantasy
Fantasy Worlds
Music (General)
R&B/Soul
Soul
Theatrical Release
Witches
Witches And Wizards
Editors Note
Note THE GOLDEN COMPASS is an adaptation of the first book in the beloved but controversial fantasy series by Phillip Pullman. The story opens with Lyra Belacqua (Dakota Blue Richards) an orphan girl who lives in an alternate world that is similar to earth, but where people's souls exist outside of their bodies in animal form. The people are ruled by a shadowy and oppressive council known as the Magisterium, which is doing it's best to keep everyone from getting information about what is called "Dust." Lyra's Uncle Asriel (Daniel Craig) has been researching Dust, and he has seen to it that Lyra is given safe shelter at Jordan College. But when the visiting Mrs. Coulter (Nicole Kidman) arrives, she asks Lyra to accompany her on a trip to the North to meet the Panserbjorne, a race of armored bears. Before Lyra leaves, the Headmaster gives her a golden compass, a device which only she can read, and from which she can intuit the truth. Lyra leaves with Mrs. Coulter, but when she learns that her friends have been kidnapped by "Gobblers," she heads out to find them, and soon joins forces with the nomadic Gyptians, some witches, and an armored bear called Iorek Byrnison (voice by Ian McKellen). Lyra finds her friends, and so discovers the evil plans the Magisterium has cooked up for the world's children. By the film's end, she has vowed to track down her Uncle Asriel, and to discover the true power of Dust.^Hollywood had a tricky time of taming this tale, as Pullman's books portray religion - the Catholic Church in particular - in a less than flattering light. The film version carefully steers clear of these themes, and instead puts its enormous budget into creating visually stunning effects. While fans of the books may find fault with this streamlined version, children are sure to revel in the many talking animals and whimsical airships.
Reviews
Los Angeles Times "[A] formidable piece of craftsmanship, using some 1,100 effects shots to bring forth a physical space that has the ability to take your breath away." 12/07/2007
Sight and Sound "[D]irector Chris Weitz makes a spirited job of transferring Pullman's vision to screen..." 02/01/2008 p.65
Directors
Chris Weitz
Actors
Nicole Kidman
Cast & Crew
Alexandre Desplat - Original Music By
Andy Nicholson - Art Director
Anne V. Coates, et. al. - Editor
Bill Carraro - Producer
Chris Lowe - Art Director
Chris Weitz - Director
Chris Weitz - Screenplay
Christopher Lee - Actor
Dakota Blue Richards - Actor
Daniel Craig - Actor
Dennis Gassner - Production Designer
Derek Jacobi - Actor
Eva Green - Actor
Freddie Highmore - Voice Of
Henry Braham - Cinematographer
Ian McKellen - Voice Of
Ian McShane - Voice Of
Kathy Bates - Voice Of
Kristin Scott Thomas - Voice Of
Nicole Kidman - Actor
Philip Pullman - Based On Novel By
Sam Elliott - Actor
Toby Emmerich - Executive Producer
Technical Info
Original Release Date 2007
Catalog ID 1000038167
UPC 00794043120435
Number of Discs 2
Running Time 113 minutes
Color Color
Original Language English
Available Audio Tracks English
Aspect Ratio
Widescreen  2.35:1
Awards
Nominee (2008) British Academy Awards, Michael L. Fink, et. al., Best Special Visual Effects,Oscar, Dennis Gassner, Anna Pinnock, Best Achievement in Art Direction,Oscar, Michael L. Fink, et. al., Best Achievement in Visual Effects
Reviews
ReviewSource ReelViews
Review The Golden Compass, the long awaited cinematic adaptation of Philip Pullman's well-respected novel, is an adequate but not inspired translation of the source material. Writer/director Chris Weitz (one of the American Pie guys) brings a style that is more obligatory than deft. Constrained by a rushed feel and too little character development, this movie never seems to flow quite right. Passages of dense exposition are interspersed with impressively staged action/adventure sequences but the experience as a whole is less than what movies like The Lord of the Rings have shown us that fantasy adaptations can provide. One key missing element: the world in which this story takes place never feels unique. We aren't drawn into it the way we were with Middle Earth or Hogwarts. In fact, with all the airships flying around, there are times when it feels like an extension of Stardust...The film's final 45 minutes, which feature several rousing battle sequences (including an all-CGI bear-on-bear affair), will wake up those who have dozed off by that time. For the most part, The Golden Compass' first hour can be a struggle to sit through...The compromises made to get this on screen are easy to identify but it's questionable whether they have resulted in a better product.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer James Berardinelli
ReviewRating 7
ReviewSource Reel.com
Review That New Line Cinema did so well with the Lord of the Rings trilogy is both a blessing and a curse. After supporting Peter Jackson's fine work, it's a natural assumption that the company has the means and access to the appropriate talent to develop strong adaptations of youthful fantasy materials (ignoring Dungeons & Dragons, of course). It is, in fact, quite difficult to discuss another such type of film without comparing, but doing so threatens to tarnish some of the shine that The Golden Compass deserves...Writer/director Chris Weitz handles the material with ease once he becomes comfortable with it, and newcomer Dakota's spunk is entirely infectious. Kidman plays Coulter's various depths with aptitude and gracefully leaves you wondering who will aid Lyra for their own good, or for the betterment of all. There is just enough societal context to understand what is at stake, and to engender care for the outcome, without any overwhelming pedantic lessons to preach...The Golden Compass creatively evokes how a child's curiosity and care ropes people into her purpose and allows her to grow from a mischievous, unsupervised tot to a being capable of leading and working towards a greater good.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer Rachel Gordon
ReviewRating 8
Features
DVD, Special Edition, Widescreen, Aspect Ratio 2.35:1, English, Spanish, Subtitled
Product Attributes
Actor Kidman,Nicole
Label Turner Home Entertainment
Music Format DVD
Video Format DVD
Quotes
Jack Mathews, New York Daily News ...the year's biggest and most ambitious fantasy.
Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times ...[a] satisfying and successful version of the opening volume of the celebrated "His Dark Materials" trilogy.
Liam Lacey, The Globe and Mail A demanding blend of spectacle, drama and exposition of ideas.
Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle Likable and eye-catching, "The Golden Compass" presents an impressively realized fantasy world.
Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times A darker, deeper fantasy epic than the "Rings" trilogy, "The Chronicles of Narnia" or the "Potter" films.

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