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Smithereens [DVD] [1982]

  • SKU: 6915485
  • Release Date: 11/16/2004
  • Rating: R
Susan Seidelman's portrait of one would-be celebrity trying to break into New York's Downtown rock scene was one of the pioneering films of the independent film movement, and Blue Underground has given it a suitably strong presentation on DVD. Smithereens has been given a letterboxed transfer to disc in the widescreen aspect ratio of 1.66:1, which is also enhanced for anamorphic play on 16 x 9 monitors. The image is often grainy (thanks largely to its 16mm origins), but the transfer accurately reflects how the film looked in theaters when it was first released, and the colors are potent and well saturated. The film's original audio mix is included in Dolby Digital Mono, and two new multi-channel mixes also appear on this release, in Dolby Digital Surround and Dolby Digital 5.1. No subtitles or multiple language options have been included. This edition includes a bonus documentary on the making of the movie, featuring interviews with stars Susan Berman and Richard Hell, as well as a commentary track from director Seidelman, the film's original trailer, and a gallery of stills and promotional artwork. Blue Underground is to be congratulated for giving an important and underappreciated film the quality DVD presentation it deserves.

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    Ratings & Reviews

    Overall Customer Rating:
    50% of customers would recommend this product to a friend (1 out of 2)

    Special Features

    • Audio commentary with co-writer/director Susan Seidelman
    • Desperately Seeking Susan & Richard - interviews with stars Susan Berman and Richard Hell
    • Theatrical trailer
    • Poster and still gallery


    Written, produced, directed, and edited by Susan Seidelman in true student film fashion, Smithereens is the story of Wren (Susan Berman), an independent spirit from New Jersey trying to self-promote herself into the New York punk scene. She meets Paul (Brad Rijn), who ran away from Montana and lives out of his van in a parking lot. Paul seems to offer genuine friendship, however, Wren is only interested in forming meaningless relationships in hopes of bolstering her nonexistent career. She has no musical talents or industry skills, yet she aggressively pursues a pathetic spot for herself in places like the Peppermint Lounge. She drops Paul for Eric (Richard Hell, who also performs on the musical score), who has a record deal, and they work out a plan to escape to California, which requires Wren to pose as a prostitute in order to scam money from a prospective john. Things don't work out, and Wren finds herself hitting one wall after another, eventually getting kicked out of her apartment. With no place to go, Wren seeks out everyone she knows in the city, only to find herself left alone. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, Rovi

    Cast & Crew

    • Image coming soon
      Susan Berman - Wren
    • Image coming soon
      Richard Hell - Eric
    • Image coming soon
      Roger Jett - Billy
    • Image coming soon
      Nada Despotovich - Cecile
    • Image coming soon
      Kitty Summerall - Blonde

    Customer rating

    Rating 4 out of 5 stars with 2 reviews

    would recommend to a friend

    Most relevant reviews

    See all customer reviews
    • Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

      A disturbing piece of significant cinema

      • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
      • My Best Buy® Elite MemberElite Member

      SMITHEREENS may not be a film I would want to sit back and watch again, but its subject matter is such that one must realize is an in your face depiction of underbelly of social order. Its characters are the epitome of bottom feeders.

      No, I would not recommend this to a friend

    • Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

      This version blows the others to smithereens...

      • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
      • My Best Buy® Elite Plus MemberElite Plus Member

      Love love love this title and buying the Criterion version is what you should do for superior quality and bonus features!

      I would recommend this to a friend

    Product images, including color, may differ from actual product appearance.