Meet Joe Black

Meet Joe Black

Video Cassette - 1999
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Days before his 60th birthday, Bill Parrish receives a visit from a mysterious stranger, Joe Black, who soon reveals himself as Death. In exchange for extra time, Bill agrees to serve as Joe's earthly guide. But will he regret his choice when Joe unexpectedly falls in love with Bill's beautiful daughter.
Publisher: Willowdale, ON : Universal Studios Canada, c1999
Edition: Universal special edition
ISBN: 9780783237459
0783237456
Branch Call Number: VCR Drama / Meet 3558
Characteristics: 2 videocassettes (VHS) (180 min.) :,sd., col. ;,1.25 cm., in container

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m
mollylarsoncook
Oct 12, 2017

One of my go-to movies when I want to get away from politics and violence. It's my favorite Brad Pitt flick and I love Claire Forlani. Hopkins is a given, of course - always great. Two thumbs up!

t
TEENREVIEWBOARD
Oct 03, 2017

Bill Parrish (Anthony Hopkins), the CEO of a successful business, is visited by Death (Brad Pitt) a few weeks before his 65th birthday. Death takes the form of Joe Black, a young man who has recently passed away from a tragic car crash. Tired of his job, Death makes a deal with Bill to buy him some extra days so that he will live to his birthday. During these extra days, Bill will show Death what it’s like to be human. Complications arise when Death finds himself falling in love with Bill’s youngest daughter. Although this movie is three hours long, every minute was worth it. My only complaint about this movie was the ending. I felt that it was too rushed, making it a bit confusing at times. 
- @Vaseline of the Teen Review Board at the Hamilton Public Library

c
callig
Jun 16, 2015

Like many of my fellow reviewers i have mixed feelings about this movie, but probably the fact that i'm an old cynic who never watches any chick flicks, is even slowing down to comment on this one, says a lot.
It has an elusive charm, and that's something that Hollywood often brags of, but very rarely achieves.
Loved the heroine [gives Julia Roberts a run for the Mona Lisa smile prize].
Kinda reminded me of Groundhog day, another flawed minor classic.
Probably about as good as it gets these days.

c
ClarkZahn
Jan 05, 2015

I love this movie. The relationship between Death and the human was brilliantly carried out by Brad Pitt and Anthony Hopkins. In the end it is Death who feels the sorrow, not the human.

m
mswrite
Nov 14, 2014

An elegant misfire, "Meet Joe Black" is a remake of sorts of the 1934 film, "Death Takes a Holiday" starring Frederic March. Joe Black (Brad Pitt in the March role) meets Susan Parrish (played by Claire Forlani, a kind of sultry Audrey Hepburn) in a diner one morning. Over coffee they strike up a philosophical conversation about relationships. He's interested. She's interested back, but already involved with someone else. She says goodbye and rises to go about her day; you feel his disappointment. He leaves too, and turning once more to watch her as he crosses the street is suddenly and violently struck by a car.

Joe's body is immediately appropriated by Death who coincidentally (or maybe not) has come for Susan's father, Bill, a wealthy businessman (played by the always excellent Anthony Hopkins). Bill Parish is not ready to die. He wangles for a little more time, convincing this handsome Grim Reaper that there is merit in learning first hand why human beings are so passionately attached to life and living. Intrigued, Death/Joe agrees, and his quirky, unsettling interactions with the various people in Bill's life--including the perplexed Susan, startled to find the hunky stranger from the diner is now a fixture at her father's side--provide the film's humor and tension.

I wanted to like this movie more than I actually did. If anything Brad Pitt is more drop-dead gorgeous (pun not quite intended) than his leading lady. But he might have been the reason I couldn't fully embrace the film. Though I've liked him just fine in other performances, here Pitt seems slightly wooden.
That may be an odd and possibly unfair criticism. He's Death, after all. Not being human, he can't offer human feelings of warmth or empathy. He's supposed to be distant, strange and vaguely off-putting.

So maybe the real problem is Pitt's noticeable lack of chemistry with Ms. Forlani. Aren't we supposed to become emotionally invested in the destiny of these two impossibly beautiful young people? Aren't we supposed to watch them and find ourselves idly wondering if, just maybe, the onscreen heat became an off-screen reality?
But there was no heat. As luminous as these actors are, for some reason Pitt and Forlani simply don't have that spark that makes a movie couple seize and hold an audience's imagination. Instead what I found myself idly wondering was why no one was asking if, um, you know, Bill had gone gay.

I mean, here's this heart-stoppingly gorgeous young guy who shows up from out of nowhere. He attaches himself like Velcro to this wealthy and distinguished older man who isn't offering anyone--even his favorite child, Susan--any explanations that make sense. Whether they wanted to think it or not, in this day and age most people would begin to at least consider the possibility: After years of obeying societal rules and living for others, was the widowed Bill Parrish finally, quietly, emerging from the closet..?

Come on, nobody thought of that?

t
tnorris
Jun 09, 2014

I guess this is one of those "you should see it at least once to say you saw it" movies. Anthony Hopkins is brilliant, as usual. The concept of the movie itself was unique and intriguing. However, it is achingly long. I personally found the ending irritating, (but I seem to be in the minority).

b
BonnieBooks
Dec 13, 2013

5 Stars!

Terrific movie! Why wasn't this movie a big hit? Most likely, it's because of the subject matter, but the movie is not a downer at all. It will capture your attention from the very opening and keep it locked in for over 2.5 hours until a very satisfying end. Both Anthony Hopkins and Brad Pitt are wonderful in this film. Treat yourself. You'll be happy to saw it!

q
qassaq
Dec 19, 2012

This remains one of my favorite shows, simply for the chemistry between Brad Pitt and Anthony Hopkins among many other things. The subtle and yet profound views on the important meanings in life and what matters most. Love the quotes from Hopkins throughout the movie, especially his final farewell at his birthday.

m
Mazicu
Jul 05, 2012

Outstanding performance from Anthony Hopkins, Brad Pitt and Claire Forlani. It's for sure a must see movie.

Sunnchilde Oct 24, 2011

This movie is worth watching if only for the scene where Brad Pitt is eating peanut butter with a spoon.

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Sunnchilde Oct 24, 2011

Sunnchilde thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

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