Film DVD related reviews

DVD title: Trace Adkins - Video Hits
Productgroup: DVD
Trace Adkins - Video Hits - movie DVD cover picture
All of Trace's Best

Well, it's finally here. The music video collection we've all been waiting for is being released on DVD. All of Trace's best, from his first number one hit, "No Thinkin' Thing", to his latest number one video, "Hot Mama" is now on DVD. Trace is hot, the women are hot, and his songs are timeless. This is a must have for Trace fans everywhere.

Studio: Emi Distribution
Trace Adkins

DVD title: Dr. Strangelove Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
Productgroup: DVD
Dr. Strangelove Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb - movie DVD cover picture
"Don't forget to say your prayers..."

I'll admit that the first time I saw DR. STRANGELOVE, I thought it was merely good. An enjoyable film, but not one of the greatest films of all time, or so I believed. But I liked enough of it to give it a second chance. And then I gave it a third chance. And a fourth.
I've probably seen this film six or seven times now, and each viewing brings something new to my appreciation. From individual ad-libs by Peter Sellers to the complete absurdity of the whole situation, there is just too much hilarity to recount in one review. Each of the actors appears to be having an absolute blast reciting their subversively funny lines. Special mention must go to Peter Sellers playing three characters, and managing to make them all unique and individually funny. Group-Captain Mandrake, the straight-laced British Air Force officer trying to prevent a disaster. The U.S. President trying to limit the fallout (no pun intended) of that disaster. And, of course, Dr. Strangelove himself, the ex-Nazi scientist whipped into such a frenzy in anticipation of the disaster that he delivers cinema one of its most recognizable lines. (The fact that Dr. Strangelove's unique voice was apparently based on some actual person is almost as frightening as anything in the movie; I cannot imagine any real-life human being sounding like this Third Reich Muppet.)
Director Stanley Kubrick coaxes some wonderful performances out of the rest of the cast too. George C. Scott is wickedly fun as the over-the-top General who isn't quite sure of what all the fuss is about. Sterling Hayden is an utter riot as the cigar-smoking, paranoid General firing shots through his office window to protect his precious bodily fluids from the evil Communists. And who can forget Slim Pickens, whose final scene is perhaps one of the most surreal and hilarious in film history.
Much of the humor comes from the wonderful juxtaposition of the horrific with the mundane. The discussions over exactly how many million will be wiped out, and the efforts of the US to get the Soviet Premier on the telephone are both diabolically absurd, and probably closer to the truth than anyone realized.
This special edition DVD is quite good value for what it offers. First of all, the film itself looks to be in excellent condition. Yes, the aspect ratio changes throughout, but that's the way Kubrick intended it. The sound is also crisp; the echoes of footsteps in the War Room and Major Kong's yelping both come through equally clear.
The DVD also contains a few mini-documentaries. "The Art of Stanley Kubrick" highlights Kubrick's film career leading up to the filming of DR. STRANGELOVE. Hardcore Kubrick fans will probably already know most of what is discussed, but I found it to be a very informative look at the parts of Kubrick's filmography that I was least familiar with.
"Inside The Making Of Dr. Strangelove" combines many interviews with still-living members of the cast and crew as they recall their memories of working on this film. Some of the more famous anecdotes are recalled (such as Slim Pickens' line of having "a pretty good time in Dallas" being changed to "Vegas" because of the assassination of JFK) as well as some more obscure bits of trivia that I hadn't heard before (the fact that many of the crew upon first seeing Slim Pickens thought he had arrived in costume, when in fact he was just dressing as he normally did).
DR. STRANGELOVE is a truly great and hilarious movie. Thankfully, this DVD release is worthy of one of Kubrick's best films. If you already love this film, this disc is worth picking up immediately. If you've never seen it before, I suggest at least a rental is in order.

Studio: Warner Studios
Director: Stanley Kubrick
Peter Sellers
George C. Scott

DVD title: The Last House on the Left
Productgroup: DVD
The Last House on the Left - movie DVD cover picture
It's Only a Movie?

I just bought this movie today on MGM DVD. I'm so glad I did. Despite both my brother and my mother telling me how awful it was, I figured it couldn't suck too bad considering it's directed/written by Wes Craven and it's produced by Sean S. Cunningham. So, I decided to go ahead and pick it up. I was blown away! After the first time I watched it, I knew that this has GOT to sneak itself into my top 5 horror list. Also, a note to those who don't think this is the uncut version, it MOST DEFINITELY is. Wes Craven himself says it, and if you don't believe him, just watch the Outtakes & Dailies feature which contains the ENTIRE disembowelment scene, which lasts about 2 minutes of just playing around with the intestines. This is definitely not a movie for the family. It has lots of naughty stuff. It's quite graphic in it's depiction of the torment the two young woman went through. Some parts are very rough to watch, however. I think it should be required viewing in high school because it truly does teach compassion. If you don't feel sorry for those girls, you're one cold fish. It has many educational morals (don't do drugs, don't follow strangers to their apartment, don't kill, etc.) It's like the 10 commandments for horror movies. I enjoyed this movie immensely.

Studio: MGM/UA Video
Director: Wes Craven
Sandra Cassel
Lucy Grantham

DVD title: The Girl on a Motorcycle
Productgroup: DVD
The Girl on a Motorcycle - movie DVD cover picture
UNDERated Even By Cult Standards**!

In the 60s "Girl On A Motorcycle" was payed little attention,did poorly at the box office, and by 1960s standereds was written off as a "phoney" an unsucessful attempt by Ronald Duncan and Jack Cardiff at making a movie with a "mind-boggling anti-sanity" feel. And if THATS the case and this REALLY was an "embarrassing attempt" then they certainly played it off well, didn't they? Disregard all the negitive reviews, Im sure that if this kind of movie was released in today's pathetic film industry of arsty-fartsy would have been a classic right away and still carry the label of being a cult at the same time.
Girl on A Motorcycle has the 1960s written all over it! Its not brilliant like A Clockwork Orange or Mick Jagger's movie "Performance" (Nobody asked but Mick was also Marianne Faithful's love intreast at the time)When released in 1968 Warner Brothers carried it under the title "Naked Under Leather" and was also severely editied to maintain an "R" rating~WHICH IS THE MAIN REASON WHY THE MOVIE PROBLEY GOT TRASHED not because it was bad, but because it was so ridiculously cut. Thankfully now you can buy the European verison which shows the whole un-cut thing. Marianne Faithful (who complety surprised me with her A+ acting skills) stars as a newlywed housewife who wakes up in the middle of the night after an erotic fantasy of her and her ex lover Alain. She realizes Alain's the one she really loves. She puts on her quite small fitting fur-lined leather jump suit (and only wearing the jumpsuit) she takes off in her motorcycle for a long ride though Europe'c country side. Basically on her way, she experiences fantasies about her husband and her "lover". I did put off watching this movie for quite just didnt seem as if would be worth while, but even by its little-know status is still very underrated, im glad i finally got around to it;) If your a fan of the 60s such as (Psych-Out,Valley of the Dolls,Head,Faster Pussycat Kill Kill,Barbarella,Head, or even Mr.Powers (thats AUSTIN Powers) would enjoy this;)

Studio: Anchor Bay Entertainment
Director: Jack Cardiff
Alain Delon
Marianne Faithfull

DVD title: The Chaplin Mutuals, Vol. 1
Productgroup: DVD
The Chaplin Mutuals, Vol. 1 - movie DVD cover picture
The best of Chaplin's Mutual comedies are on Volume 1

The two-reel comedies that Charlie Chaplin made during his one-year contract with the Mutual Film Corporation are considered his best shorts. Having been offered $500,000 from Essanay to stay, Chaplin signed with Mutual for $10,000 a week for one year and a $150,000 signing bonus. More important, Mutual gave Chaplin virtually complete control over his shorts as writer, director, and star. It was during this period that Chaplin refined his filmmaking techniques and set the stage for moving on to longer and better films, from "A Dog's Life" and "The Kid" to his silent feature films such as "The Gold Rush" and "Modern Times."

Fortunately Kino started restoring Chaplin's work with both Essanay and Mutual, tracking down the best surviving 35mm negatives, digitally mastering the prints to clean them up, and then adding re-orchestrated musical scores. "The Chaplin Mutuals, Volume 1" actually offers the last four of the dozen two-reelers Chaplin did for Mutual, all of which were released in 1917 and all of which co-starred Edna Purviance as the Tramp's leading lady and had Eric Campbell in the role of the heavy:

"The Immigrant" (Released June 17, 1917) is arguably the best of Chaplin's shorts. He filmed 24 hours of footage over two months to produce a 21-minute film when most two-reelers were shot in two days. When Chaplin began, filming the restaurant scene (with Campbell as the head waiter), the film was going to be about the bohemian life, but the scene was too short and he decided to make the Tramp and the young girl immigrants, creating the opening sequence on the boat and the happy ending. Starting with the simple gag of the Tramp leaning over the ship's railing turning out to be something other than what we think, "The Immigrant" is classic Chaplin.

"Easy Street" (January 22, 1917) would be my choice for the second best of the Chaplin Mutuals. Reformed by Edna, the Missionary's daughter, Chaplin plays a cop whose beat is a wretched slum area, hence the irony of the title. There is a short but intricate chase scene before Edna is kidnapped by a dope addict and has to be rescued by Charlie. On the one hand there is lots of slapstick in this one, but you also have a depiction of urban poverty and violence that is a bit unsettling if you can stop laughing long enough to think about what you are seeing.

"The Adventurer" (October 22, 1917), the last of the films Chaplin did for Mutual, has him Chaplin a convict who escapes after a lengthy chase scene and end up rescuing not only the lovely Edna, but her mother and obnoxious fiance. Hailed as a hero, and presumed to be a wealthy yachtsman as is so often the case in these comedies, Charlie is invited to a dinner party at the Judge's mansion where it is just a question of time before his true identity is revealed.

"The Cure" (April 16, 1917) has Chaplin as a wealthy inebriate who is trying to dry out at a sanitarium where once again the lovely Edna catches his eye. If you have ever seen a clip from this one it is probably Chaplin's comic use of the revolving door and the poor guy with the gouty foot. The big joke is that the supply of booze he has brought in a trunk to survive the experience of sobering up ends up being dumped into the mineral spring, which makes for a lot of happy people in the end.

With "The Immigrant" and "Easy Street" this collection offers two of the very best of Charlie Chaplin's two-reelers. If, for some reason you wanted to only pick up one of the three volumes in this set then this would definitely be the one. But I think the whole set is worthwhile, certainly superior to everything Chaplin did with Keystone and Esssanay and clearly setting the stage for what would follow. I had a class once where I showed one work from each of the five periods of Chaplin's career, defined by the studio he worked for, to show how he progressed from simple reelers like "The Fatal Mallet" to my favorite, "City Lights."

Studio: Image Entertainment
Director: Charles Chaplin
Charles Chaplin
Edna Purviance

DVD title: Firefly - The Complete Series
Productgroup: DVD
Firefly - The Complete Series - movie DVD cover picture
Superb series, tragically cut short.

I can't add much about the series that hasn't already been said in the previous 1382 reviews. It's fantastic, you should buy it.

However, I've also seen the movie based on the series at a preview screening. And I have to say...the movie's wonderful. If you like the series, you'll like the movie. It has heart, humor, sadness, and action--lot's of action. So if you buy the DVD and you love the series, go see the movie. If enough people see the movie, then Universal will make two more. They might even bring back the TV series.

So if you want to see good television, buy the Firefly DVD. If you want to see a good movie, watch Serenity. It comes out on September 30, 2005. Mark your calendar, maybe tape it to your dog. That way, when you wonder "Why is my calendar taped to Prince?", you'll remember and go see the movie.

Studio: Twentieth Century Fox Home Video
Nathan Fillion

DVD title: Motley Crue: VH1 Behind the Music
Productgroup: DVD
Motley Crue: VH1 Behind the Music - movie DVD cover picture
THE MUTTS NUTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This dvd from Vh1 is killer! it tackles every angle of the crue and touches on things with them that most bands would never admit to. a very good watch!

Studio: Uni/Beyond

DVD title: Elvis - '68 Comeback Special
Productgroup: DVD
Elvis - '68 Comeback Special - movie DVD cover picture
Elvis - -The '68 Comeback Special

The title says it all, Comeback. This is a young, sexy, handsome, Elvis. When he did this concert everyone knew he was back.....He draws in the audience like no other. His black leather suit with the black hair and his famous smile is like no other. He had his audience back. I recommend this concert only second to his Aloha From Hawaii..I had both in VHS and now DVD. I can't tell you how many times I have watched it, and will continue too. Excellent.....

Studio: A Vision
Elvis Presley

DVD title: Scream Trilogy - Boxed Set
Productgroup: DVD
Scream Trilogy - Boxed Set - movie DVD cover picture
Three's a charm.

I always thought that after Scream was made they would'nt make anymore. But I am so glad they did. Scream 2&3 are the best sequals ever made. Scream 3 didn't have as much gore in it as the first movie had, or the second one for that matter. All of the "Screams" are great but Scream 3 is the BEST!!!

Studio: Dimension Home Video
Neve Campbell

DVD title: Amarcord - Criterion Collection
Productgroup: DVD
Amarcord - Criterion Collection - movie DVD cover picture

This film has all the trademark Fellini tracking shots and surrealism, but what makes it so enjoyable to me is the rude humor. One reviewer said, "lewd and bawdy." Exactly. Shots from behind as women place their derrieres on bicycle seats almost made me wet myself. Il Duce and the Fascists are made to look ridiculous. A grandfather who amuses himself with flatulence. A mad Uncle Teo who refuses to unzip while urinating, then climbs a tree and won't come down, while screaming, "I need a woman." A group of boys masturbating together in a car while verbalizing the sexual images that are in their heads. A boy who proves his worthiness by lifting an over-weight tobacconist, then plunges his face into her ample bossom as his reward. It all makes me squeal with delight.
In the film's most haunted and surreal image, some of the townsfolk go out at night in small boats to witness the passing of the luxury liner, The Rex. The liner floats by as if in a dream, and will delight lovers of FILM ART. Beautiful.
Don't miss the FUNNIEST and most BEAUTIFUL foreign film to come down the pike. I like it better than 8 1/2 and consider this Fellini's MASTERPIECE. WONDERFUL STUFF from a TRUE AUTEUR.

Studio: Criterion Collection
Director: Federico Fellini
Magali Noël
Bruno Zanin

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