STANDING ON GUARD

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Going Postal

Release Year:   2010
Studio:   Acorn Media
Format:   Colour; NTSC; Widescreen
Rated:   Not Rated
# of Discs:   2
Running Time:   185 m + bonus
DVD Release Date:   September 20, 2011

Creator:   Terry Pratchett
Screenwriters:   Richard Kurti, Bev Doyle
Director:   Jon Jones
Actors:   Richard Coyle, David Suchet, Claire Foy, Andrew Sachs, Charles Dance
DVD Features:   Terry Pratchett video introduction (5 min.); director Jon Jones audio commentary; and bonus disc (62 min.) with cast, crew, and fan interviews; deleted scenes; blooper reel; and image galleries. SDH subtitles
E: Top Picks Rating:   10/10

Acorn Media Write-up: 
Available to U.S. audiences for the first time with this release, Terry Patchett’s beloved Discworld novel comes to life in the dazzling two-part drama, Terry Pratchett’s Going Postal, debuting on Blu-ray and DVD. Starring top British actors Richard Coyle (Lorna Doone), David Suchet (Agatha Christie’s Poirot), Charles Dance (Game of Thrones), Claire Foy (Little Dorrit) and Timothy West (Bleak House, Edward the King), the spectacular 2010 production boasts first-class performances, elaborate costumes and impressive sets. The 2-disc DVD boxed set and Blu-ray Single feature more than an hour of exclusive extras, including video introduction from Terry Pratchett; director commentary; deleted scenes; blooper reel; and cast, crew, and fan interviews. A worldwide phenomenon best-known for his Discworld series, Pratchett ranks second only to J.K. Rowling as the U.K.’s bestselling author and in the top-ten bestselling non-U.S. authors in the United States.

Moist von Lipwig is a con man and a charlatan—and he loves every minute of it. From confidence tricks to far-reaching financial fraud, von Lipwig revels in hoodwinking, fleecing, and otherwise ripping off the citizens of Ankh-Morpork. When the law finally catches up to him, the city’s shrewd leader, Lord Vetinari (Charles Dance), offers von Lipwig a choice: he can take over the derelict post office . . . or suffer a painful death.
The reluctant postmaster finds himself in charge of thousands of undelivered letters, commanding a charmingly deranged staff of misfits, and at odds with corrupt businessman Reacher Gilt (David Suchet), who will stop at nothing to crush his competition. Along the way, he falls under the spell of the icy Adora Dearheart (Claire Foy), much to her chagrin. In this delightful adaptation, Moist von Lipwig needs every ounce of his considerable charm and cunning to restore the post office, trounce Gilt, and win Adora’s affections.

Jon Ted Wynne Review: 
Terry Pratchett is, apparently, a literary phenomenon. Even in this J.K. Rowling/Harry Potter age, he was the U.K.’s best-selling author in the 1990s. He is best known (also like Rowling) for his work in the fantasy genre, of which his Discworld series, which has become a staple of fantasy literature for young people. Several of the novels have been adapted into films.

GOING POSTAL is arguably the best film adaptation to date. Actually a two-part mini-series, GOING POSTAL is a delightful fantasy that takes its main inspiration from the most unlikely of sources: the post office.

Further, GOING POSTAL casts its main villain as the evil controller or what is obviously a medieval form of the Internet.

This brilliant fusion of unlikely sources, combined with the setting of a fantastical Dickensian-like fantasy world, takes some getting used to if, like me, you were unfamiliar with Pratchett’s novels or film adaptations of his work. But it doesn’t take long to be won over by the wonderful characters, the wit of the writing and the premise, and the sheer sense of fun that permeates this delightful program.

In the best British tradition, the film is full of great character actors and characterizations. Topping the bill is David (“Poirot”) Suchet as the corrupt business man Reacher Gilt. That’s “gilt” as in gold and guilt, both key motivations for his wonderfully slimy character.

Names in Pratchett’s world are a delight all its own in our world. Moist von Lipwig (the hero!); Adora Dearheart (the heroine!); Groat; Ridcully. You get the drift. This, by the way, is another nod to Dickens, who so often gave his characters fun and fanciful nomenclatures.

GOING POSTAL also works on another level. As a subtle reminder that putting pen to paper and actually producing a letter, Pratchett reminds us that doing so is much more personal than merely tossing off an electronic impulse (text/tweet/email) that can be just as impulsively dismissed. Ink on paper has a permanency that is as valuable as human thought and emotion.

GOING POSTAL has broad appeal and will play equally well to adults and children. Fans of “Fawlty Towers” will spot Andrew (Manuel) Sachs in an important supporting role.

GOING POSTAL has this reviewer’s stamp of approval!

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