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JFK is a 1991 American film directed by Oliver Stone. It examines the events leading to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and alleged subsequent cover-up, through the eyes of former New Orleans district attorney Jim Garrison (played by Kevin Costner). Garrison filed charges against New Orleans businessman Clay Shaw (Tommy Lee Jones) for his alleged participation in a conspiracy to assassinate the president, for which Lee Harvey Oswald (Gary Oldman) was found responsible by two Government investigations: the Warren Commission, and the House Select Committee on Assassinations (which concluded that there was another assassin shooting with Oswald). The film was adapted by Stone and Zachary Sklar from the books On the Trail of the Assassins by Jim Garrison and Crossfire: The Plot That Killed Kennedy by Jim Marrs. Stone described this account as a "counter-myth" to the "fictional myth" of the Warren Commission. The film became embroiled in controversy. Upon JFK's theatrical release, many major American newspapers ran editorials accusing Stone of taking liberties with historical facts, including the film's implication that President Lyndon B.
So give it a chance. November 22, 2003 marks the 40th anniversary of the death of John F. Kennedy, and there's no better way to look back than with a screening of Oliver Stone's thoughtful and exhaustive study of Jim Garrison's (Kevin Costner) investigation into the president's assassination. Stone's masterpiece has now been reissued on DVD in Stone's director's cut, with 17 minutes of restored footage that Camelot enthusiasts should find rewarding -- the same version as the previous DVD release. (Included among the restored scenes is a long passage about George DeMohrenschildt, a Nazi sympathizer who befriended Lee Harvey Oswald (Gary Oldman) and later betrayed him to the Warren Commission. There's more about Bill Broussard's (Michael Rooker) defection, and a scene of Garrison later being accosted in an airport. Extra witnesses are paraded through the final courtroom scene, and, most peculiarly, there's a restored sequence of Garrison's appearance on the gaudy The Jerry Johnson Show, with John Larroquette as the smarmy host.)
There's also a new second disc of material, including the documentary Beyond JFK: The Question of Conspiracy, even more of Stone's deleted and extened scenes, and some updated multimedia about the assassination (notably some recently declassified documents) and some info about 'Mr. X' (played by Donald Sutherland in the film) -- revealed to be military man Fletcher Prouty. Stone's commentary to the feature film is so exhaustive and full of data it reaches the point of being dizzying.
Presented in 2.35:1 widescreen and with full Dolby Digital sound, the DVD edition of JFK holds dozens of new secrets waiting to be discovered. The Zapruder film is much more vivid here than on videotape, and when those shots ring out, they echo through the room, a haunting memory of what's gone before. Still, at a running time of 206 minutes, this special edition of JFK may not be for everyone. But at least you don't have to rewind.
The new Ultimate Collector's Edition box set includes the director's cut of the movie, plus a copy of The Kennedys: America's Emerald Kings. A short book about the film is also included, along with postcards, printed photos, and other keepsakes. A new documentary outlining recently declassified material about the assassination, however, sheds only minimal new light on the case. ), The numerous deleted scenes, including the alternate ending, which originally concluded with Mr. X's soliloquy, are also worth a look.
The Blu-ray version offers similar extras (without the photographic extras or The Kennedys). It's a great Blu-ray disc to buy if you're looking to start your collection.
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