'Dallas: The Movie Collection'
(Larry Hagman, Ken Kercheval, Patrick Duffy, Linda Gray, Barbara Bel Geddes, et al / 2-Disc DVD / NR / 2011 / Warner Bros.)
Overview: Big D gets even bigger with three movies and a cast reunion! From 1978 to 1991, the TV series Dallas grew legions of fans with compulsively watchable tales of greed, sexy and schemes – most masterminded by smilin’ J.R. Ewing (Larry Hagman), the double-dealing oilman folks love to hate. Dallas was so popular is also spawned the four exciting pieces in this special collection, starting with a prequel (The Early Years) that sets the stage for the drama to come.
DVD Verdict: I have to say, firstly I am so glad these movies are finally out. And in the one lovingly-created collection too! I've been looking for 'The Early Years' all over the place. It's hard to come by. Got a hold of a poorly reproduced copy of 'JR Returns' a while back too, but it/they pale in comparison to this wonderful collection.
First up is the 'Early Years,' a great prequel film from '86 written by series creator David Jacobs. It is interesting in its way, although not entirely in sync with the show. Next is 'JR Returns,' the first reunion sequel. This is a great film, providing an excellent resolution to the series with a great sense of continuity and finality. It was written by Dallas masters Leonard Katzman and Art Lewis and directed by Katzman, who died shortly before it's release. As the main man behind all of Dallas except the dream, it is a fitting tribute to him and swansong to his show which he ran and crafted for so long.
The next one, 'War of the Ewings,' is not as good, having a new writer come on and in general being extraneous. Finally, the '04 reunion (which was already on another season release) can be found here too. So, trust me, it's some great Dallas moments which blend so wonderfully together.
I was a huge Dallas fan, just twelve years old when it started. Watched it all the way through. I love the cast as if they were my own family, and watching the reunion gives you a feel for who these people are in real life, not just on-screen. [CB] This is a Full Screen Presentation (1.33:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Feature of the Dallas Reunion: Return to Southfork: 13 years after the series concluded its orginal run, Larry Hagman hosts a behind-the-scenes look at the most exciting moments in Dallas history.