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Paris Blues [VHS]
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Customer Reviews:

  • Great music

    Paul Newman and Sidney Poitier are two expatriot jazz musicians living in Paris; Newman is there to compose serious music and Poitier to escape from racial prejudice in the US. Along come Joanne Woodward and Diahann Carroll on vacation, and in a flash they're paired off and in love. Carroll wants Poitier to return to the US ("life is better there now for blacks," she says). Newman wants to go back to America with Woodward, but realizes that music is his whole life and must pursue it further in Paris on his own. Since it's a jazz movie there's the obligatory drug scene with one of the other musicians. The plot and the writing are not that strong, but Newman (in only his second featured role) is pretty good. And when things start to sag, on comes Louis Armstrong for a swinging jam session (can't beat that!). Duke Ellington is responsible for the great musical score. Murray MacEachern dubbed Newman's trombone work, and Paul Gonsalves did Poitier's tenor sax dubs....more info
  • I'd like to share it with friends
    This movie has a lot going on -- the music, the romance, the city of Paris, some really great actors and a really good feel. Poitier and Newman are a little seedy and very worldly, while Carroll and Woodward are naive and easy. Everyone's just looking for a good time. It made me feel as if I was the one on vacation in Paris. The plot is good and I kept trying to guess how things might end up. As always, Louis Armstrong stole the show during his scenes. I really want to share this movie with my family and friends. I can't find it to rent. I'd love to have it on DVD....more info
  • Paris Blues - a defining moment
    I moved to Paris in 2003. I am retired, black and american. Friends always asked ... why Paris? I kept saying, I vacationed in Paris but never found the moment until today...

    I finally can identify when I first fell in love with Paris. It was when I was 10
    years old and saw the movie Paris Blues. It starred Paul Newman and Joanne
    Woodward but what struck me was it also starred Sidney Poitier and Diahann
    Carroll, that was unheard off back then but I was too young to know. I still
    remember a scene with Diahann Carroll wearing this coat. It was then that a quiet seed was planted inside me to love Paris. I don't recall who was with me that day, I just remember the film and I remember wishing it would come on television; I have no memory of seeing it again.

    What made it standout was that they Poitier and Carroll were featured in
    roles equal to Newman and Woodward. I never forgot that movie, it is truly
    the reason I fell in Love with Paris. Later, I went to the little store
    across from our place at 16th & Ridge and discovered a cheap perfume called ,
    Evening in Paris, incredible. I tear up with this memory. I was somehow able to come up with the money to buy a bottle. A defining moment! Please, where and when can I find the DVD: The movie comes on Paris TV today at 11h25 and I will be watching.

    Paulette...more info
  • The elusive frontier!
    The bliss against the love : two musicians in search of the fame and glory. Two women in love who suddenly find the love of their lives in the middle of the Light City.

    Paris the same city which opened its arms to Django Reinhardt, Charlie Parker and Miles Davis among others jazz celebrities.

    Ritt makes an exceptional tour de force film with impeccable performances of all the cast. The supreme highlight is the casual encounter between Satchmo, Poitier, Newman and the gypsy guitarrist.

    A must for any lover cinema and a reference for the jazz hard fans.

    What will they be waiting for the immediat release on DVD format?

    ...more info
  • More classics such as these on DVD please!
    With all the rubbish that is immediately thrown onto disks, why on earth does it take forever to get the good stuff on DVD?...more info
  • The film's great asset was the fascinating background music...
    The story is about two young jazzmen Newman and Poitier who live in Paris...Newman is after a serious musical career... Poitier enjoys the tolerant atmosphere and the freedom from U.S. racial tensions... They work at a Left Bank cub owned by Barbara Laage who is having a casual affair with Newman... Serge Raggiani a gypsy guitarist who is a narcotics addict, and Louis Armstrong a trumpeter, are among their friends... Newman and Poitier meet a couple of American tourists, Joanne Woodward and Diahann Carroll who are visiting Paris on a two-weeks vacations...

    A romance develops between Poitier and Carroll... Woodward and Newman also find that a feeling is growing between them... Woodward wants him to return with her to the U. S., but Newman believes that marriage would interfere with his career, and decides to remain...

    As in "The Hustler," Newman plays a man whose devotion to making his talent better than second-rate prevents love... But he was natural as the pool player, and convinced us--through his movements, dialog and expressions--of his feelings for the music...

    Woodward is more aggressive than Newman... Moved by his music, she displays genuine emotion, but Newman is so defensive, egocentric and selfish that he becomes hostile, stubborn, unpleasant and offensive... Woodward is determined to make something more of it, but he remains uninfluenced--willing to show slight affection but incapable of being sincerely tender... In their final bedroom scene, the two superb1y perform a progression from spontaneous domestic affection, to growing alienation, to his indifferent rejection of her love...

    Legend Louis Armstrong shines in one flamboyant jazz interlude... ...more info
  • Pleasant but uninvolving drama
    Paul Newman and Sidney Poitier play US expatriates ,both jazz musicians,living and working in Paris .Newman is in Paris because he feels more able to grow musically in a European environment while Poitier is escaping racial prejudice in the US .They meet two US tourists and pair off together ,Newman with Joanne Woodward and Poityier with Diahann Carroll .Cue much -frankly rather dull-discourse between the couples in bars ,cafes etc and frequent leisurely perambulations around the city in which they talk(my how they do talk!)about life ,love and the whole damned thing!Carroll devotes much time to trying to persuade Poitier to return to America,while woodward does the same with Newman.

    The problem for me with this movis is twofold-the dull maundering script by Jack Sher ,Irene Kamp and Walter Bernstein which tries to put a social consciousnes spin on what is pretty standard Hollywood material ;and Martin Ritt's direction.It almost seems as if he said "okay guys we are in Paris-let's do a Nouvelle Vague" movie -you know Truffaut and those cats ".The result is a movie with gestures to a European sensibility -and using a local crew -but one which is hafway between Hollywood and the Left Bank.

    Too often scenes go nowhere and the movie meanders rather than moves with a sense of purpose .On the plus side it is well acted all round ,the Ellington score is a delight and the presence of jazz luminaries like Satchmo give proceedings a shot in the arm when the action starts to sag .This will I suspect appeal mostly to jazz lovers and Francophiles I applaud its jazz theme but as a movie I found it a bit lacking in grit. ...more info