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John Adams (2008) - Emmy ® Winner/Golden Globe ® Winner! - Best Mini-Series, Best Performance by an Actress, Actor & Supporting Actor

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John Adams
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Learn more about John Adams:

Format: DVD
Sku: 207684820
UPC: 883929020065
UPC 14: 00883929020065
Rating: Game Rating Code
|He United the States of America.
John Adams is a sprawling HBO miniseries event that depicts the extraordinary life and times of one of Americas least understood, and most underestimated, founding fathers: the second President of the United States, John Adams. Starring Paul Giamatti (Sideways, Cinderella Man, HBOs American Spendor) in the title role and Laura Linney (You Can Count on Me, Kinsey) as Adams devoted wife Abigail, John Adams chronicles the extraordinary life journey of one of the primary shapers of our independence and government, whose legacy has often been eclipsed by more flamboyant contemporaries like George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and Benjamin Franklin. Set against the backdrop of a nations stormy birth, this sweeping miniseries is a moving love story, a gripping narrative, and a fascinating study of human nature. Above all, at a time when the nation is increasingly polarized politically, this story celebrates the shared values of liberty and freedom upon which this country was built.

"...a rousing piece of filmmaking, a fascinating character study and a largely accurate presentation of the time when America was born.  Charlie McCollum, San Jose Mercury News
"Engaging...thought-provokingly exciting...  Entertainment Weekly
" sumptuous and satisfying as TV gets: gorgeously produced, marvelously acted and written with a sense of high drama amid generous displays of wit.  Matt Roush, TV Guide
"...Hooper has a straightforward style that gives flesh-and-blood dimension to names from history books.  New York Daily News
"A rich, intelligent and often moving miniseries.  Robert Abele, LA Weekly
"Wonderful...beautifully realized...  The New Yorker
"The filmmakers, including executive producer Tom Hanks, have attempted to re-create and enliven history--and they succeed grandly.  Tom Shales, The Washington Post

Editor's Note
This epic miniseries from HBO takes viewers inside the incredible life of John Adams, the second president of the United States. Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book by David McCullough, the seven-part series follow Adams (Paul Giamatti, SIDEWAYS) during his leadership of America during some of its most turbulent times. It also captures his profound relationship with his wife Abigail (Laura Linney, YOU CAN COUNT ON ME), one of history's great love stories. From the Boston Massacre--where Adams defended the accused British soldiers--to his role in the Revolution and framing the Constitution, Adams showed himself to be an uncommon man, following his convictions while also facing his own personal demons. It's a story of tragedy, love, war, friendship, freedom, liberty, and a uniquely American life.


Video Features DVD, No Longer Produced

Technical Info

Release Information
Video Mfg Name Studio: HBO
Video Release Date Release Date: 11/4/2014
Video Play Time Running Time: 501 minutes
Video Release Year Original Release Date: 2008
Video CategoryId Catalog ID: 1000038820
Video UPC UPC: 00883929020065
Video Number of Discs Number of Discs: 3

Audio & Video
Video Original Language Original Language: English
Video Audio Spec Available Audio Tracks: English
Video Color Spec Video: Color

Aspect Ratio
Video Aspect Ratio Anamorphic Widescreen  1.78:1

Cast & Crew

Video Cast Info David Morse
Video Cast Info Stephen Dillane
Video Cast Info Sarah Polley
Video Cast Info Rufus Sewell
Video Cast Info Danny Huston
Video Cast Info Paul Giamatti
Video Cast Info Laura Linney
Video Cast Info Tom Wilkinson
Video Cast Info David McCullough - Source Writer
Video Cast Info Tom Hanks - Executive Producer
Video Cast Info Kirk Ellis - Writer
Video Cast Info Tom Hooper - Director


Emmy (2008)
Video Award Name Donna Zakowska, et. al., Winner, Outstanding Costumes for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special
Video Award Name Erik Henry, et. al., Winner, Outstanding Special Visual Effects for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special
Video Award Name Gemma Jackson, et. al., Winner, Outstanding Art Direction for a Miniseries or Movie
Video Award Name Kathleen Chopin, et. al., Winner, Outstanding Casting for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special
Video Award Name Kirk Ellis, Winner, Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Dramatic Special
Video Award Name Laura Linney, Winner, Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie
Video Award Name Paul Giamatti, Winner, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie
Video Award Name Stephen Hunter Flick, et. al., Winner, Outstanding Sound Editing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special
Video Award Name Tak Fujimoto, Winner, Outstanding Cinematography for a Miniseries or Movie
Video Award Name Tom Hanks, et. al., Winner, Outstanding Miniseries
Video Award Name Tom Wilkinson, Winner, Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie
Video Award Name Trefor Proud, et. al., Winner, Outstanding Prosthetic Makeup for a Series, Miniseries, Movie or a Special

Professional Reviews

4 stars out of 5 -- "The acting, especially from Giamatti as the irascible Adams and Laura Linney as his wife Abigail, who steered him clear of vanity, has the tang of authenticity..." 03/01/2009 7 of 10
Remember when the epic television miniseries featured earth-shattering romances and big, shiny stallions and riotous town meetings with heroes and villains clearly delineated? The founders of our great nation would fight valiantly and give speeches that moved crowds of attractive blonds to tears, and then they'd get on their horses and ride off to fight the bloodthirsty redcoats...But these are the days of David Milch's "Deadwood" and Paul Thomas Anderson's "There Will Be Blood" and this is HBO, home of the story that's stubbornly grubby and full of stuttering and awkward moments and buzzing flies. The trend has swung past realism to realism through a dirty window, realism with a bad attitude and a hangover...Based on the book by David McCullough and directed by Tom Hooper, "John Adams" counterbalances heroism -- this was a man who helped to liberate the colonies from British rule, after all -- with dreary details: Abigail Adams is left at home with her children in the dead of winter, while her husband is off fine-tuning the language of the Declaration of Independence with other noble men. Abigail writes John love letters, sure, but she's also forced to grab a rifle and run to the door of their farmhouse at any sign of trouble. She and the kids witness haunting sights of injured Americans return from battle with the redcoats...But it's the casting of Giamatti as Adams that says it all. Giamatti is an almost defiantly ordinary-looking man, and that's a crucial detail as far as author David McCullough is concerned. In his book, the caption underneath the first paintings of a puffily wigged Adams and his wife reads, "Her decided nature is clearly evident, while he might be almost any untested, well-fed young man of the time." I believe what he means to express is that Adams looks like a fat frat boy with a squirrel glued to his head...Far from epic, "John Adams" is a biopic as intense and moody as the man himself. - Heather Havrilesky

The Onion A.V. Club 8 of 10
John Adams was one of the unlikeliest founding fathers, more swept up in the events of the American Revolution than out in front of them. Because of that, he's been an ideal subject for two ground-level studies of how America came to be: David McCullough's epic biography John Adams, and HBO's seven-part, nearly nine-hour adaptation of same. As portrayed by Paul Giamatti on HBO, Adams is a preening neurotic, worried about how his peers perceive him. And yet he's hardly unsympathetic. If anything, Adams' foibles help humanize the radical changes of the late 18th century...John Adams begins with Adams' defense of the British soldiers involved in the "Boston Massacre" and ends with his death on July 4th, 1826--fifty years after the adoption of the Declaration Of Independence...John Adams makes the American experiment look fragile and tentative, in the hands of a small group of men who couldn't agree on whether to replicate the culture and government of England or to start over with a clean slate...The miniseries also feels a little shapeless at times, and could probably have been streamlined without losing its message. But like the best TV, it's compulsively watchable, and in spending over an hour in each key era of Adams' adult life, Hooper encourages viewers to note the changing fashions, the appalling dental hygiene, and the subtlety of the performances by Giamatti and Laura Linney (who plays Adams' wife Abigail). John Adams begins with the eerie, apocalyptic sight of men in wigs marching down muddy streets behind "Join Or Die" banners, and it ends in rooms that look warm and domestic and distinctly American. It travels far over the course of five decades, and yet what's most striking about John Adams is that so much about it--like so much about the nation's history--feels unresolved. - Noel Murray

Product Attributes

Product attributeVideo Format:   DVD
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