[DVD cover] [Screen shots] [Film] [Official web site]
Festival Express is a rousing record of a little-known, but monumental, moment in rock n' roll history, starring such music legends as Janis Joplin, The Band, and the Grateful Dead. Set in 1970, Festival Express was a multi-band, multi-day extravaganza that captured the spirit and imagination of a generation and a nation. What made it unique was that it was portable; for five days, the bands and performers lived, slept, rehearsed and did countless unmentionable things aboard a customized train that travelled from Toronto, to Calgary, to Winnipeg, with each stop culminating in a mega-concert. The entire experience, both off-stage and on, was filmed but the extensive footage remained locked away until 2003, when director Bob Smeaton released the Festival Express movie. A momentous achievement in rock film archaeology, Festival Express combines the long-lost material with contemporary interviews nearly 35 years after it was first filmed.
In November 2004, New Line Home Entertainment released a Region 1 2-disc DVD set of the concert film. The DVD set has over 50 additional minutes of exclusive performance footage not seen in the theatrical version of the film, and also offers 25 minutes of additional interviews, "The Making of the Festival Express Film" featurette, the theatrical trailer and a photo gallery as well as a 16x9 widescreen version of the film with Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound, DTS and stereo surround sound, with English and Spanish subtitles and closed captions.
MGM Home Entertainment put out an expensive two-disc Special Edition DVD in December 2004, with even more extras and a special feature that allows viewers to play only the performance tracks.
Various Artists - Festival Express - 2004 - New Line Home Entertainment DVD N7573