Manage your own movie collection and always keep it with you with our Apps. Price track movies and get price drop notifications instantly. Become a member to take full advantage of all site features.

Best Blu-ray Deals

Best Blu-ray Deals, See All the Deals »
Top deals | Price drops  
 All countries United States United Kingdom Canada Germany France Spain Italy Japan
The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy (Blu-ray)
Last Action Hero (Blu-ray)
The Swimmer (Blu-ray)
Jaws (Blu-ray)
Pacific Rim (Blu-ray)
Mr. Peabody & Sherman (Blu-ray)
Freezing: Anime Classics Season 1 (Blu-ray)
Oldboy (Blu-ray)
Cannibal Holocaust (Blu-ray)
House of Cards: The Complete Second Season (Blu-ray)
The Legend of Billie Jean (Blu-ray)
Batman: The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
Sleepaway Camp (Blu-ray)
The Party (Blu-ray)
On the Beach (Blu-ray)
Sorcerer (Blu-ray)
God's Not Dead (Blu-ray)
Breakheart Pass (Blu-ray)
Lake Placid (Blu-ray)

Phil Spector

2013 | 92 min | Not rated | 1.78:1

Phil Spector


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

User reviews

No user reviews yet, post one

Movie appeal


TV release date

 Mar 24, 2013

Country of origin

 United States



Overview Preview Cast & crew Screenshots User reviews News Forum

Phil Spector

 (TV) (2013)

Phil Spector Preview  

 / 10
Preview by Brian Orndorf, March 29, 2013

"Phil Spector" opens with a bizarre disclaimer the places the events in the film in a state of limbo, unable to comment on the murder trial of the titular musical titan and unwilling to give the man an exhaustive exploration of his life and times. It's an ephemeral picture, taking a thin slice from the chaos of Spector's legal woes and savoring each bite. It's also the latest work from powerhouse writer David Mamet, lending the feature a pair of lungs to ease its odd quest to remain a satellite in Spector's orbit for 90 minutes, making no judgments and no pleas about a divisive individual flailing as he fights for his freedom.

In 2003, struggling actress Lana Clarkson was found dead in legendary music producer Phil Spector's mansion. While Spector claimed the incident was a suicide, the City of Los Angeles disagreed, putting the architect of the famous Wall of Sound on trial for murder, using his history with gun violence and physical abuse to suggest intent. Paying a large sum of money to criminal defense lawyer Bruce Cutler (Jeffrey Tambor) for top-tier legal work, Spector (Al Pacino) is instead paired with Linda Kenney Baden (Helen Mirren), a dogged investigator who's been brought on for her ace courtroom skills. Interviewing Spector in his funhouse of a home to shape a proper defense, Linda discovers an arrogant, unbalanced man clinging to his innocence, treating his courtroom appearances like theater, showing off a range of wigs to draw attention to himself. Gradually coming to the conclusion that Spector wasn't responsible for the suicide, Linda braces for the trial, attempting to toughen her unwieldy client before he's put on the stand.

"Phil Spector" is no bio-pic looking to retrace steps to pop music glory. It's not even a satisfying characterization of the man's current state of mind. Instead of history, Mamet elects to study millimeters of behavior as Spector gears up for his date with a jury, beginning the film with Linda's introduction to the defense team (while suffering from pneumonia) and her immediate attraction to the details of the case, where a fading bombshell with an extensive B-movie history died in the lair of one of music's most notorious hotheads, and he claims he had nothing to do with it. It's a legal bouillabaisse of lies, passions, and forensic science, observing Linda attempt to summon reasonable doubt when all signs point directly to Spector's short temper and his love of guns, using weapons to titillate and intimidate. The raw elements of the case are certainly enough to aid Mamet in his quest to inspect the legend at his lowest point, yet "Phil Spector" shows no interest in a grand depiction of identity, merely latching on to one aspect of the hitmaker's personality: his mania, which often manifests itself in monologues that reinforce his innocence and condemn Clarkson's fame-hungry desperation.

Structured like a television procedural drama, "Phil Spector" only selects parts of the case that interest Mamet the most. A question of blood spray after Clarkson allegedly pulled the trigger eats up considerable screentime, questioning why Spector's bone-white suit remained largely unsullied by wet red if the man shot the restaurant hostess himself. The movie presents drawings, diagrams, and exploding dummies to make a case for Spector's innocence, positioning this bloodless oversight as the key to the man's innocence. However, "Phil Spector" isn't truly concerned with challenging evidence, wisely sustaining a feeling of illness around the defendant that keeps Linda on edge, unsure of guilt, culminating in a chilling moment that equates Spector's taste in extravagant wigs (though he swears it's his real hair) with his fantasyland mental state, poisoning all legal planning. As much as it looks like Mamet is choosing sides, "Phil Spector" stays a judgmental shell game to the end, ignoring the lure of condemnation to play interesting notes of ambiguity.

While the movie lacks muscle as a legal drama, skipping around to such a degree, it's impossible to process exactly what the courtroom stakes are, "Phil Spector" does have Mirren and Pacino, who make a fine pair of opposites, munching away on Mamet's finger-snap dialogue. Pacino is Pacino, yet there's identifiable characterization, portraying Spector as a fragile man trying to put on a show of strength, though powerless to his hair-trigger temper. He's boisterous but memorable, while Mirren is the straight woman, processing the big show with communicative eyes. With the material nearly ready-to-wear as a theatrical experience, it's wonderful to watch two gifted performers work with each other, trading barbs, questions, and yelps with aplomb. "Phil Spector" doesn't display any dramatic direction, but it has thespian verve and more than a few great scenes to help digest any inconsistencies and interruptions Mamet refuses to iron out.

Starring: Al Pacino, Helen Mirren, Jeffrey Tambor, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Rebecca Pidgeon, Matt Malloy
Director: David Mamet

» See full cast & crew

Have you seen this movie?

Rate and write your own review
The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy (Blu-ray)
Gold Box Deal of the Day
Today only: $37.99

Buy Now


Get Daily Blu-ray Deals

* We do not share your email and you may opt out at any time.

Top Blu-ray Deals


The best Blu-ray deals online. Don't miss out on these great deals.

See Today's Deals »

 Top movies

Latest Deals United States

The latest deals on Blu-ray movies
at Amazon.

Show new deals »

Trending Blu-ray Movies
1. The Legend of Billie Jean
2. Insomnia
3. Scanners
4. Sabotage
5. The Essential Jacques Demy
6. Batman: The Complete Series
7. Transcendence
8. Maleficent
9. Under the Skin
10. The Wolf of Wall Street
11. Hercules 3D
12. Jaws
13. Hercules
14. Heaven Is for Real
15. A Hard Day's Night

Trending in Theaters
1. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
2. Lucy
3. Hercules
4. The LEGO Movie
5. Sabotage
6. Under the Skin
7. Noah
8. Godzilla
9. X-Men: Days of Future Past
10. The Purge: Anarchy
11. Maleficent
12. 300: Rise of an Empire
13. Transcendence
14. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
15. Transformers: Age of Extinction

Top 10 Sellers United States
1.  Divergent
2.  Noah
3.  Batman: The Complete Series
4.  Game of Thrones: The Complete Fourt...
5.  The LEGO Movie
6.  Heaven Is for Real
7.  Transformers: Age of Extinction
8.  X-Men: Days of Future Past
9.  Godzilla 3D
10.  Frozen
  » See more top sellers

Top 10 Pre-orders United States
1.  Divergent
2.  Noah
3.  Batman: The Complete Series
4.  Game of Thrones: The Complete Fourt...
5.  Transformers: Age of Extinction
6.  X-Men: Days of Future Past
7.  Godzilla 3D
8.  The Amazing Spider-Man 2 3D
9.  How to Train Your Dragon 2
10.  The Other Woman
  » See more pre-orders

Top 10 Bargains United States
1.  Divergent
$19.96, Save 50%
2.  Noah
$17.99, Save 55%
3.  The LEGO Movie
$17.96, Save 50%
4.  Transformers: Age of Extinction
$19.99, Save 50%
5.  Jaws
$7.99, Save 60%
6.  Rio 2 3D
$22.99, Save 54%
7.  The Wolf of Wall Street
$11.99, Save 56%
8.  The Other Woman
$19.99, Save 50%
9.  The Legend of Billie Jean
$5.19, Save 48%
10.  Les MisÚrables
$8.99, Save 61%
  » See more deals

Most Popular Blu-ray Movie Deals

The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy

 United States

$119.98 $37.99

Last Action Hero

 United States

$9.98 $5.19

The Swimmer

 United States

$29.95 $17.29

Best Blu-ray Movie Deals »

This web site is not affiliated with the Blu-ray Disc Association.
All trademarks are the property of the respective trademark owners.
© 2002-2014 All rights reserved.
Registration problems | Business/Advertising Inquiries | Privacy Policy | Legal Notices