BILLY CRYSTAL: 700 SUNDAYS

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THE PLOT THUS FAR

In 700 Sundays, legendary comedian and actor Billy Crystal tells the stories of his youth, growing up in the jazz world of Manhattan, his teenage years, and finally adulthood. The Tony Award-winning show is a funny and poignant exploration of family and fate, loving and loss.

WHAT WE THOUGHT

“700 Sundays” is a loving tribute to the men in his early adulthood. First, he discusses his father and his death when Billy was only 17. Then, they transition into his father and uncle’s love of Jazz. I didn’t know that Billy Crystal’s uncle was the founder of Commodore Records. At that label, they did amazing things like recording Billie Holliday’s take on “Strange Fruit”. There were other major albums there, but this is a story about a young Billy Crystal. Between this and “The Wonder Years”, I’ve spent the last week aggressively focusing on tomes about adolescence. There is a certain power to the past that impacts your child in ways that inform every quirk about your adult self.

Billy Crystal manages to create something unique. You can almost see shades of his performance in “Mr. Saturday Night”, but Crystal remains true to himself and his past specials. This is a comedian telling you about the man before the craft. So often we forget the personalities that entertain us were formed by real life. Listening to Crystal talk about losing his dad and burying the pain as he tried to grow into the Jazz of Manhattan is eye-opening. I can see why it won a Tony now. If anything, I hope we get a follow-up in a decade or so from Crystal.

The DVD comes with no special features. The A/V Quality is on par with a standard definition broadcast. The transfer shows no sign of digital noise. The Dolby 5.1 track is supportive for a stage show. In the end, I’d recommend a purchase.

RELEASE DATE: 10/21/2014

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