Director: Peter H. Hunt Cast: William Daniels, Howard Da Silva, Ken Howard

DVD (Wide Screen)

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Patriotism and musical exuberance collide in Hollywood's retelling of American history with a newly restored director's cut of the musical 1776. Columbia's work on this 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer is very nice. Sporting a solid array of colors and well-saturated black levels, this image appears to be very evenly produced save for a few instances of edge enhancement in a few key scenes. The audio is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround in English and should please those with home theater systems. With many instances of directional effects and a crystal clear soundtrack, this disc's audio presentation should make fans sit up and sing. Also included on the disc are English and French subtitles. The extra features on 1776 are small but substantial. Included on this disc is: a very enjoyable commentary track by director Peter H. Hunt and screenwriter Peter Stone, as they discuss the restoration process of the film and how it was brought to the silver screen; a few screen tests of some of the actors in the film; and theatrical trailers for the film and other Columbia musical movies.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/02/2002
UPC: 0043396058910
Original Release: 1972
Rating: PG
Source: Sony Pictures
Region Code: 1
Presentation: [Wide Screen]
Sound: [Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Time: 2:46:00
Sales rank: 216

Special Features

Director and screenwriter commentary; Screen tests; Bonus trailers; Production notes

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
William Daniels John Adams
Howard Da Silva Benjamin Franklin
Ken Howard Thomas Jefferson
David Ford John Hancock
Roy Poole Stephen Hopkins
Andy Albin William Paca
Emory Bass James Wilson
William H. Bassett Thomas Heyward, Jr.
Howard Caine Lewis Morris
John Cullum Edward Rutledge
Blythe Danner Martha Jefferson
Jack de Mave John Penn
Gordon Devol Thomas Lynch, Jr.
Frederic Downs Samuel Huntington
William Duell Custodian Andrew McNair
Peter Forster Oliver Wolcott
William Hansen Caesar Rodney
Ralston Hill Secretary Charles Thomson
Patrick Hines Samuel Chase
Ron Holgate Richard Henry Lee
John Holland William Whipple
Daniel Keyes Josiah Bartlett
Leo Leyden George Read
Donald Madden John Dickinson
Richard McMurray Francis Lewis
Ray Middleton Thomas McKean
Mark Montgomery Leather Apron
Jonathan Moore Lyman Hall
John Myhers Robert Livingston
Stephen Nathan Courier
James Noble John Witherspoon
Barry O'Hara George Walton
Jordan Rhodes William Hooper
Rex Robbins Roger Sherman
Wabei Slyolwe Richard Stockton
Virginia Vestoff Abigail Adams
Ray Heindorf Conductor

Technical Credits
Peter H. Hunt Director
Peter Stone Screenwriter
Sherman Edwards & Donald Meyer Score Composer,Songwriter
Onna White Choreography
Harry Stradling Cinematographer
Ray Heindorf Musical Direction/Supervision
George James Hopkins Set Decoration/Design
George Jenkins Art Director
Al Overton Sound/Sound Designer
Arthur Piantadosi Sound/Sound Designer
Sheldon Schrager Asst. Director
Allan Snyder Makeup
Jack L. Warner Producer
Florence Williamson Editor
William H. Ziegler Editor
Patricia Zipprodt Costumes/Costume Designer

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Start [2:25]
2. Mr. Adams [2:46]
3. "Sit Down, John" [1:39]
4. "Piddle, Twiddle & Resolve" [4:32]
5. Benjamin Franklin [4:22]
6. "The Lees of Old Virginia" [10:49]
7. Congress Now in Session [22:06]
8. The Declaration Committee [10:46]
9. "But, Mr. Adams" [1:37]
10. Writer's Block [6:05]
11. Mrs. Jefferson Arrives [3:16]
12. "Till Then" [4:15]
13. Reintroducing Themselves [2:16]
14. "He Plays the Violin" [3:28]
15. Congressional Committees [5:48]
16. "Cool Considerate Men" [9:09]
17. "Mama, Look Sharp" [6:57]
18. Reading the Declaration [2:12]
19. "The Egg" [3:09]
20. Alterations, Deletions, Amendments [1:49]
21. Slavery [3:47]
22. "Molasses to Rum" [7:17]
23. Abigail's Advice [3:56]
24. "Yours, Yours, Yours" [8:42]
25. "Is Anybody There?" [3:39]
26. The Vote on Independence [3:04]
27. "The Resolution Is Adopted." [6:08]
28. July 4: Let Freedom Ring [8:05]

Customer Reviews

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1776 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 44 reviews.
clemmy More than 1 year ago
I absolutely adore this movie. It is perfectly hilarious. The characters are as unique as they were in real life, but candid and not stuffy and austere as they seem to be when they are read about (John Adams, Ben Franklin, John Hancock, Thomas Jefferson, etc.). Then there are characters that were not preserved for posterity, such as "Andrew McNair, Congressional Custodian." Then there are the dispatches, missing New Jersey, and George Washington forever complaining about the state of his troops. The very first song always makes me laugh - because not only is it funny, it reminds us that they weren't always serious or had their minds glued on independence their whole time in Philadelphia, especially in the summertime. Then there is the noble turkey, the bird Ben Franklin wanted to be the nation's symbol instead of the eagle, who he claimed was "a scavenger, a theif, and a coward." Or Abigail and John arguing about saltpeter and pins. This is a wonderful movie and well worth the time and money.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best musicals you will ever see in your life. It brings all the characters (especially that small, fiery man John Adams) to life and lets you see that they were not as stiff and serene and polite as their portraits and biographies indicate. A must-see.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This musical is a true rarity of strong acting, inspiring song,and patriotic fervor.It is surprisingly accurate as well(though i doubt anyone in the second continetal congress could sing that well). you can't go wrong
Anthony341 More than 1 year ago
Best movie I've ever seen.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm sorry. I love this show, and looked forward to the added portions and better DVD screening with great anticipation. But the wide screen, with it's tight black- edged framing destroys the beauty of the picture. Try watching John Adams with the top of his head cut off. You'll want to cry. Back to my good old VHS version, where I can truly sit back and enjoy the whole show.
LADYJAGUAR More than 1 year ago
FrustratedTraveller68 More than 1 year ago
This movie has always been a favorite of mine since seeing it on television when I was a kid. I have the movie on VHS, and on DVD. It is one of those movies that reminds you of how this country was built, formed and organized by just a few men that were elected or appointed by the states that they represented. Back then, that is when they represented their constituancy without putting their hand out for more money or asking "What's in it for me?".
CarrieSue More than 1 year ago
In a world where we are continually pushed into a left-right political mentality, it is refreshing to see a film where the ideals of liberty are championed so plainly. William Daniels plays John Adams (actually a combination of historical figures John and Samuel Adams) to script-chomping perfection. Every line crackles from his lips, and you can feel the pathos in every phrase. I don't know what one customer reviewer is talking about regarding the beautiful widescreen presentation here; no one's heads are cut off. Every frame is a work of art, and the ensemble of actors is never underused. The film was photographed for widescreen, and it's the only way to see this film. If you're wondering why the Tea Party Patriots are so upset, you couldn't do much worse than to see "1776." We need to get back to our Founding Fathers' principles of limited government and individual liberty. Once you're done viewing this film, read the Declaration of Independence and ponder the significance of what those great men did back then.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A truly inspired work that mostly flows easily in its retelling of the discussions and choices surrounding the attempt to declare independence from England. William Daniels' portrayal of John Adams was magnetic.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Originally, I watched this many years ago in school, and then saw the on stage version. For the younger veiwer it is a fantastic way to make a historically significant event come alive and be ''memorable''. The performances are top notch. And the facts close enough for most. A great family movie for all.
James_Lampert 4 months ago
As a history lesson about the Second Continental Congress, it's a failure: Virginia's resolution on Independence was adopted well before the Declaration was signed; Martha Jefferson was far too frail to visit her husband in Philadelphia; Judge Wilson was not the milquetoast he was portrayed as. But as a MUSICAL COMEDY about the Second Continental congress, intended to STIR UP INTEREST in history, it is a SMASHING SUCCESS ON ALL COUNTS. (And of course, with its multi-ethnic cast representing historic figures who were anything but multi-ethnic, and its use of hip-hop, soul, and so forth, Hamilton takes far more poetic license than 1776 ever did.) It inspired me to look up Caesar Rodney, only to find that reality was more amazing than fiction: despite a cancerous growth on his jaw, and despite being a lifelong asthmatic, he really did ride seventy miles through a thunderstorm, the night of July 1st, to break the deadlock in the Delaware delegation. Perhaps it will inspire you to look up heroes of the American Revolution you never knew about. Be prepared to sit for the long haul, and you will be rewarded: 1776 clocks in at two hours and 45 minutes, but it is worth every second. From the hilarious opening number ("Sit Down, John"), to the heart-rending "Mama, Look Sharp," to the perky "Dear Mr. Adams" and "The Egg" (the song was inspired by the poster of an American-flag-waving eagle from a Union Jack egg, not the other way around), to Rutledge's reminder that there is enough guilt for everybody on the matter of slavery ("Molasses to Rum"), to Adams' inspiring "Is Anybody There," the music is all top-notch. (And if you know anything about the historical Martha Jefferson (played by a roughly 29-year-old Blythe Danner), the final verse of "He Plays the Violin" will bring tears to your eyes. The casting (mostly taken from the original Broadway cast) was likewise top-notch: there is nobody better than William Daniels at playing the "obnoxious-and-disliked" John Adams, and Howard Da Silva and Ken Howard were excellent as Franklin and Jefferson. Suffice it to say, 1776 has been an Independence Day tradition for me, for many years now.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best cast, most hilarious, wonderful musicals ever made. Even 42 years later it makes my family laugh and cry - a thoroughly enjoyable family film for ages 8 and up.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This film is not only entertaining, it's as historically accurate as a musical can be.
Guest More than 1 year ago
For anyone who says that they don't want to watch ''1776'' because it is a 'Historical Movie' and it will be boring, we who have seen it can chuckle and know they haven't watched it. I really enjoyed watching this musical and the songs are just as comical as they are well sung.
Guest More than 1 year ago
First of all, having seen the original Broadway production back in 1969, be aware that the film actually trims some content (probably more due to the political content of that material, and the temper of the times), particularly notably the tune COOL CONSIDERATE MEN. This does not diminish this excellent film musical, but realize that if 1776 turns up at a stage near you, it is very much worth the trip and will have a few extra treats. One of the things I particularly appreciated about the way this tale is told is how we are made to at least understand (if not empathize with) those parties that were reticent about coming on board with the Declaration of Independence. You'll have a new-found appreciation of the significance of our Declaration of Independence. Plus the songs are tuneful and varied - there's the humous (THE EGG), the emotive (MAMA LOOK SHARP), and the passionate (MOLASSES TO RUM), and my favorite, HE PLAYS THE VIOLIN. Sure it's stagey, but I think that is what has served this film well over the years, allowing it to have a rather unique distinct quality.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie is INCREDIBLY funny and very historically accurate. A must see for every American. I have seen it over 50 times and I never get tired of it. Each time I grow deeper in love with our Founding Fathers and their courage during that time period.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This film has not diminished in stature one bit from the time I saw it in high school. It is every bit as entertaining today as it was then and also a good history lesson for the politics of the time. Five stars may not be high enough!
PIpersMom09 More than 1 year ago
I have always loved this play and movie. I have the old VCR tape, and visuallly I prefer it. The widescreen version chops the heads off some of the characters. The plus side of the widescreen is that it has the full version of it. I had forgotten that some of the scenes were deleted in the tape version. It's nice to have them back. It does add to the content. If you can get passed the visuals then it is worth watching. This has always been a July 4 tradition. It will continue to be. I never get tired of it. It's funny, educational and well done. One of my favorite musicals of all times. I remember as a kid watching it in the movies theatre during the bicentennial. I have seen the broadway play too. Nice to have those memories. The nieces love it and it's a great way to introduce them to the history of our country. I do wish they could redo the widescreen version so that the characters heads aren't cut off. That would be a plus. Get it anyways. You won't be disappointed.