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Behind the Candelabra

(DVD - 2013 )
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
Behind the Candelabra
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Directed by acclaimed filmmaker Steven Soderbergh and executive produced by Jerry Weintraub, this HBO Films drama recreates the glittering private world of Liberace, the flamboyant, phenomenally successful entertainer whose extravagant costumes, trademark candelabra, and elaborate stage shows made him the most bankable entertainer of his time.
Title: Behind the candelabra
[videorecording (DVD)]
Publisher: Burbank, CA : Distributed by Warner Home Video, [2013]
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (ca. 118 min.) :,sound, color ;,4 3/4 in.
video file, DVD video, Region 1, rda
digital, optical, stereo
digital, optical, surround
Content Type: two-dimensional moving image
Media Type: video
Carrier Type: videodisc
Notes: Special features: The making of Behind the Candelabra.
Based on the book by Scott Thorson and Alex Thorleifson.
Cataloged primarily from container.
Summary: Directed by acclaimed filmmaker Steven Soderbergh and executive produced by Jerry Weintraub, this HBO Films drama recreates the glittering private world of Liberace, the flamboyant, phenomenally successful entertainer whose extravagant costumes, trademark candelabra, and elaborate stage shows made him the most bankable entertainer of his time.
Audience: Rating TV-MA for adult themes, adult activity, hard language, intense or persistent violence, sexually-oriented nudity, drug abuse or other elements.
Statement of Responsibility: HBO Films presents a Jerry Weintraub production ; produced by Gregory Jacobs, Susan Ekins, Michael Polaire ; screenplay by Richard LaGravenese ; directed by Steven Soderbergh
Credits: Director of photography, Peter Andrews ; edited by Mary Ann Bernard ; music adapted by Marvin Hamlisch.
Performers: Michael Douglas, Matt Damon, Dan Aykroyd, Scott Bakula, Rob Lowe, Tom Papa, Paul Reiser, Debbie Reynolds.
Event: Originally broadcast as a made-for-TV movie by HBO on May 26, 2013.
System Details: DVD; Region 1; widescreen (16:9) presentation; Dolby Digital 5.1, Dolby Surround 2.0.
Other Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1) or dubbed Spanish (Dolby Surround 2.0) dialogue; optional English, French and Spanish subtitles; closed-captioned.
Subject Headings: Gay couples Drama. Gay musicians Drama. Pianists United States Drama. Thorson, Scott Drama. Liberace, 1919-1987 Drama.
Genre/Form: Video recordings for the hearing impaired.
Fiction films.
Feature films.
Biographical films
Made-for-TV movies.
Topical Term: Gay couples
Gay musicians
Pianists
Publisher No: WAR348657002
3000051765
2000088397
1000411874
MARC Display»

Library Staff

List - DVDs - Feb. 2014 by: EPLReadersServices Mar 19, 2014

Let’s be honest, I watched this movie to see what the big fuss was about Matt Damon and Michael Douglas making out. I found, however, one of the best displays of acting I’ve seen this year. Both men are absolutely spot-on in this film, from their bravado in some scenes to moments of pure vulner... Read More »


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Jun 20, 2014
  • Bookworm39 rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Entertaining, but I think there was more to Liberace then was shown in this movie. I think there should have been more scenes of his brilliant piano playing. This movie only showed mostly negetative parts of his life. It was a time where one could not expose one's personal life or their career would be ruined. Today stars are coming out of the closet everyday. I think he did his best and that he was a Great Artist and Person.

Jun 15, 2014
  • teddypawz rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

I found this movie to be precise, not offensive or over the top. He was a flamboyant persona (like any big name stars today) who liked to show it off. He didn't pretend to be anything short of flamboyant. He died in a time new to the public about AIDS. I enjoyed the movie and learned more about Liberace, which is the point of most true-to-life movies.

Jun 12, 2014
  • 1_critic rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

Entertaining, seedy, sometimes humorous but mostly sad account of the secret life of Liberace as told by a disgruntled ex-lover.
Thorsen's account of the realtionship is obviously a biased, kink-em-when-they're-dead narrative reminiscent of Christina Crawford's dishing of Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest. That Liberace used and manipulated Thorsen and other young men is evident, however, these young men willingly participated and gained from the arrangement. Would young, handsome Thorsen really have taken up with Walter Liberace if he was not wealthy, generous, famous? Both men in my view were victims as well as perpetrators of a dysfunctional, co-dependant relationship now public knowledge. Sadly, the entertainer's greatest fear would appear to be realized - that one day he would be remembered as the flamboyant old queen who died of AIDS.

Jun 04, 2014
  • BloomFree rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

I believe that one of the reasons this movie doesn't work is that the director is far too concerned how the general public might respond to gay sexuality. Older rich person younger not so rich person - not a new combination. The movie felt cut in half -- the first upbeat and entertaining the second very dark and disturbing. This movie needed something -- probably some good honest feedback might have helped.

I'm interested by the wide variety of opinions expressed by readers. I agree with those who found the movie insulting, tasteless and sleazy. I liked Liberace the entertainer and realized he was gay but for me some scenes were disturbing, whatever his lifestyle. I don't think most (or any)celebrities would want that kind of scrutiny. I had thought of watching with an older lady and am very glad I didn't.

Apr 26, 2014
  • pigweed rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Not a great movie, but it has some entertainment value. I couldn't ever get past the awareness that I was watching Michael Douglas "pretend" to be Liberace. It wasn't a good performance in my opinion. Rob Lowe was amusing but over the top. The supporting actors for the most part were good and I thought that Matt Damon gave a good performance. I've grown to like him as a skilled actor who works hard at his craft.

Apr 25, 2014
  • rationallady rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

As a 66-year-old woman I found the true story of Liberace interesting. The acting is great. I do think the presumption that Liberace's female audience had no idea he was gay is false. I remember as a sheltered teenager first learning about homosexuality and immediately connecting it to Liberace! He was the-now false-epitome of gayness.

Apr 22, 2014
  • eastriverside rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

Wildly overhyped--definitely less than the sum of its rhinestone-encrusted parts. I can understand the impetus to bringing this story to life--Liberace, for chrissakes! But the casting of Matt Damon is a clunker--Scott Thorson was 18 years old when he was plucked from obscurity, and despite his talents, Matt Damon doesn't remotely look or act like any 18-year old I've ever met. It killed any plausibility for me, since it removes, from the get-go, the very real "ick factor" of the 18-year old animal trainer and the 57-year old, flamboyant entertainer. Douglas does a serviceable Liberace impression, but there's no revelations or deep insights herein. Even the hyped cameos were deadly dull: Rob Lowe and Debbie Reynolds serve as stunt casting with no meat to sink their teeth into. The highlight for me was Cheyenne Jackson as the boy-of-the-moment who gets the boot when Liberace sets his sights on Thorson. Other than that...it's a surprising bore given what the primary subject might have inspired in another director.

Apr 08, 2014
  • Palomino rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

Funny, tragic, captivating, weird, retro, touching, and entertaining. I'd describe it as a combination of Mad Men, House MD, and Frozen.

I almost didn't watch, I was put off by negative reviews and thought it would be a lot of work, but I was amazed how quickly I got into the story and how much empathy I felt with these sad, stupid characters.

This is either the most honest and deep love story movie I've seen in ages, or it's the best acting, because while watching I forgot that these guys are famous actors that I've seen in other roles.

I think anyone would enjoy this for the music (?? I know!) and the costumes. Beware if you're offended by drugs, homosexuals, bedroom scenes, plastic surgery, china-smashing tantrums, bare bums, language, crimes against fashion, or dogs on sofas.

Mar 18, 2014
  • Scaltro rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Bit bizarre to see the action between Michael Douglas and Matt Damon - you have to suspend your opinion of these actors. Based on a real story - it was worth learning about this person. They gave the script a good try.

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Jul 18, 2013
  • libguy_1 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Behind the Candelabra trailer

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