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BOTTLE SHOCK - DVD Movie
"Bottle shock" describes what can happen to wine as it travels from place to place. Set in 1976, Randall Miller's widescreen docudrama concerns the real-life showdown between California's wineries and their French counterparts. Napa Valley's Jim Barrett Lost Highway's Bill Pullman has been plugging away for years with minimal success. A former attorney, Barrett runs Chateau Montelena with his wayward son, Bo Chris Pine, the Star Trek prequel's Captain Kirk, who would rather do anything than assist his stern father. Bo's co-workers include Gustavo Six Feet Under's Freddy Rodríguez and Sam Transformers' Rachael Taylor, who long to produce the perfect chardonnay. Naturally, the young men compete for the favors of the beautiful blonde the movie's least interesting angle. Across the Atlantic, Steven Spurrier Alan Rickman struggles to keep his Parisian wine shop going cheapskate American Dennis Farina is his only regular customer. Then Spurrier conceives a contest to attract customers; surely, his beloved French growers will put those upstart Yanks in their place. He flies to Napa to look around, and persuades the Barretts to compete. Miller and his wife, screenwriter Jody Savin, previously worked with Pullman and Rickman on Nobel Son, but decided to release Bottle Shock first. Though comparisons to Sideways will be inevitable, the filmmakers take more of a historical look at California wine country. The "Judgment of Paris" changed the face of the business forever, and they've found a lively way to recount the tale. --Kathleen C. Fennessy