Film DVD related reviews

DVD title: Batman Begins (Widescreen Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
Batman Begins (Widescreen Edition) - movie DVD cover picture

In this fifth installment of the ever popular Batman feature film series, Christian Bale suits up as our caped superhero. Overall, Christian handles the role of Batman very effectively, complete with the scratchy, raspy voice that is downright creepy. He is a little bit less convincing as Bruce Wayne, although who watches a Batman movie to see Bruce Wayne? I thought the fighting scenes were done well, but most were shot so close-up to the action I felt like I wasn't seeing half of the scene. That is the one downside to this movie, if it has any downsides. Supporting Bale are Michael Caine, Katie Holmes, Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman, Liam Neeson and Cillian Murphy as the Scarecrow. Michael Caine brings the character of Alfred to a whole new great level although I would still take Michael Gough as Bruce's butler anyday. Katie Holmes I thought did a decent job as the assistant DA/Bruce Wayne's love interest, although I feel the film could have gone on without her. Finally Cillian Murphy does a great portrayal of the big villain in the fim, the Scarecrow/Dr. Jonathan Crane. Unlike in previous Bat films, where there is usually one or two villains or bad guys, in this film there is at least 5 if not more. The Scarecrow is a genuinely alarming and menacing bad guy and is definitely a step up from the goofball Mr. Freeze in Batman and Robin, the worst film in the series. Liam Neeson and Morgan Freeman are great additions to the cast as well as great portrayals of their characters, Neeson as Wayne's mentor and Freeman as Bruce's ally in Wayne Enterprises, remeniscent of Q in the James Bond series. Basically, this is the story in a nutshell: Bruce Wayne, seeking to restore Gotham City to its glory days before crime and corruption eroded it, sets out to be trained and taught all about the fundamentals of putting fear into the hearts of those who do evil, and the physical force necessary to stop them. Ra'as Al Guhl (Ken Wattanbe), along with Ducard (Liam Neeson) train Bruce on the skills that he desires. Scarecrow, along with a slew of corrupt cops in the Gotham City Police Department, set out to unleash a fear toxin upon the city using Gotham's water supply and a microwave transmitter. There are also some plot twists involving Ra'as Al Guhl and Ducard as well, but telling them here would seriously pretty much reveal the whole movie. It is up to Bruce Wayne, who designs the Batsuit and the Batmobile with the help of Morgan Freeman's character, to put a stop to the Scarecrow/Dr. Crane's plans. A very well told story, it thoroughly explains Bruce's youth and the entire backstory of the film that ultimately turns Bruce Wayne into his alter-ego, Batman. A superbly casted, and well directed film by Chris Nolan, this movie represents Batman's best. Gone are the silly anatomically correct Bat costumes, and the cartoonish villains, as well as the so-so Batmobile and gadgets. There is nothing silly, cartoonish or so-so about this great movie. The best movie of 2005 hands down, Batman Begins.

Studio: Warner Home Video
Director: Christopher Nolan
Christian Bale
Michael Caine
Ken Watanabe

DVD title: The Eagles - Farewell 1 Tour - Live From Melbourne
Productgroup: DVD
The Eagles - Farewell 1 Tour - Live From Melbourne - movie DVD cover picture

No one plays live better than the eagles. The best song? dirty laundrey. IT ROCKS!

Studio: Wea Corp

DVD title: The Best Years of Our Lives
Productgroup: DVD
The Best Years of Our Lives - movie DVD cover picture
Thought provoking

This masterpiece depicts the lives of 3 U.S. servicement after their return home from WW2. You learn that the acclamation back to normalcey isn't as easy as you may believe. The way the story is weaved to accurately portray 3 very destinct characters is amazing, and unparalled to this day. This milestone in movie making was nominated for eight academy awards, and received seven, including best supporting actor for real life WW2 veteran and amputee, Harold Russell. If you would like to see a portrayl of a story not so heard of, I would advise watching this superb classic.

Studio: Mgm/Ua Studios
Director: William Wyler
Fredric March
Dana Andrews

DVD title: The Honeymooners - Classic 39 Episodes
Productgroup: DVD
The Honeymooners - Classic 39 Episodes - movie DVD cover picture
Like Ralph would say...these are the greatest...and on DVD

Having been born 24 years after the initial showing of the Honeymooners, I might not be the target audience that came to mind when this DVD collection was assembled. Funny is funny, however, and these "Classic 39" episodes of the Honeymooners are the funniest half hours ever shown on television and the greatest situation comedy of all time.
You just don't see shows like this now. Nothing is this well acted or this well written. And nothing is just this funny. This is a husband and wife struggling to get by and they look like it, too. This "Friends" where the cast lives like millionaires. This isn't "Fraiser" where they work in some high-profile industry. Ralph drives a bus and Norton works in the sewer (an "underground engineer.") The Kramdens and Norton are real people and real neighbors.
What made the show work so well was the actors. Jackie Gleason owns the material. He doesn't even have to say a word to provide a hilarious moment. Just watch him stew, his face contort while listening to his mother-in-law just prior to his famous blabbermouth rant.
Audrey Meadows is perfect. When Gleason sets 'em up, Meadows' Alice knocks 'em down like no one else. Ralph: "The bills will get bigger & bigger, and I'll get less to eat. Then you know what I'll look like?" Alice: "Yeah, a human being." Episode after episode, she deadpans cut down and cut down with deadly accuracy.
Art Carney's Norton should have his own statue in Washington DC. A terrific actor playing the part perfectly. Like Meadows, Carney has an uncanny chemistry with Gleason. You really can feel the history between the two characters, as if they've been best friends for long enough to be close friends and long enough to get on each others nerves all the time.
Likewise, you get the same feeling between Ralph and Alice as well as Norton and Trixie, who -- played by Joyce Randolph -- is the perfect match for screwball Norton.
And of course, there is every else that made the show so great. Bert Weedemeyer, Mr. Marshall, the Friendly Raccoons and Haaaaaarrrrrvy.
Every episode has one belly laugh moment and at least a half dozen great lines. I'm buying two sets. One for myself and one for my - Brooklyn born and raised - dad for Christmas.

Studio: Paramount Home Video
Jackie Gleason

DVD title: Rounders
Productgroup: DVD
Rounders - movie DVD cover picture
Entertaining movie

I love Matt Damon and Ed Norton, so I was already predisposed to like this movie. And I did. This movie is both a buddy movie, a poker movie, a bit of a love story, and a suspense flick. That actually doesn't make the movie sound to original except for perhaps the poker part.
Matt Damon is happy in law school, having left his poker swindling days behind, when an old friend (Ed Norton) needs his help. Damon reluctantly helps him out. Their relationship reflects the loyalty and trust they have for eachother, but also how that loyalty could bring Damon's ruin, particularly since Norton's behavior is self-destructive.
The movie's end is a tad predictable, but Norton is always entertaining. He plays his character erratic and unpredictable, yet you can see why Matt is moved to help him.
Definately an enjoyable movie

Studio: Miramax Home Entertainment
Director: John Dahl
Matt Damon
Edward Norton

DVD title: Star Trek - The Original Series, Vol. 14, Episodes 27 & 28: Errand of Mercy/ The City on the Edge of Forever
Productgroup: DVD
Star Trek - The Original Series, Vol. 14, Episodes 27 & 28: Errand of Mercy/ The City on the Edge of Forever - movie DVD cover picture

I think everyone will agree that Volume 14 is definetly one of the most popular Trek DVD's to date. The reason being well it's actually quite simple: (1) The debut of the Klingons and of course (2) One of the best Trek episodes ever. So I can easily say that this is Highly recommended before going into great detail about the episodes.
The first episode here is ERRAND OF MERCY which features the debut of the Klingons led by Commander Korr (played by John Colicos). This episode finds the Enterprise races to Organia to prevent the Klingons from taking over the planet. However when they arrive the Organians refuse the help of Starfleet and pretty soon the Klingons invade the planet. A frustrated Kirk tries to reason with the stubborn Organians who will not allow the Klingons and Starfleet to fight. Both sides completely unnerved later find out that there is more to the Organians than meets the eye for they are a far superior race compare humans or Klingons. A classic!
The next episode is one of Trek's finest CITY ON THE EDGE OF FOREVER is easily one of my favourites. McCoy goes insane after consuming a drug accidently and beams down to a planet with a bizarre Time portal. When the crew beams down to catch him McCoy jumps into the portal and wisked off to the past altering the course of time to the extent that the Enterpirse no longer exists. Kirk and Spock go back in time to find McCoy and end up it the early 1930's during the depression. There Kirk and Spock await for McCoy to show up and they befriend the beautiful social worker Edith Keeler (played by Joan Collins). Kirk begins to fall in love with the woman and Spock later reveals that in order to set time straight again Edith Keeler must die unfortunetly. This episode is a powerful drama and easily one of Star Trek's finest episodes ever. A true classic.
Bottom Line: these episodes must be seen. Both are excellent and belong in everyones collection! Highly recommended!

Studio: Paramount Home Video
Star Trek Original Series
William Shatner

DVD title: Man on Fire
Productgroup: DVD
Man on Fire - movie DVD cover picture
Brutal, brooding and spellbinding

With kidnapping a viable enterprise in Mexico City, wealthy parents are expected to purchase multi-million dollar life insurance policies, with expectations that their children can be randomly snatched and held for ransom. These kidnappings have become culturally endemic, a source of enormous profit for clever criminals who have bribed the appropriate officials to extort money from terrified parents, with no real assurance that they will see their children alive after the ordeal.

One family hires an ex-Black ops specialist, John Creasy, now a despondent alcoholic, to act as bodyguard for their daughter to qualify for the necessary insurance. From the start, it is abundantly clear that no one is to be trusted, not the police investigators, nor the insurance brokers. Creasy steps into a landmine without any idea of the challenges that await him.

The hard-boiled, cynical Creasy has no illusions about himself, seeking temporary solace in a bottle, a few vague hours of peace in a life gone wrong. Yet the bodyguard (Denzel Washington), looking every bit the dissipated has-been, is slowly thawed by the irrepressible Pita (an endearing Dakota Fanning), gradually losing his fight against an emotional entanglement. When the girl is kidnapped, Creasy is gravely wounded, but determined to revenge the child's loss, although told she is dead.

Then begins a brutal foray through the poverty-riddled barrios of Mexico in search of the culprits, anyone involved in Pita's kidnapping. Creasy is virtually unstoppable in his determination and takes advantage of the help of a newspaper reporter who wants to see the corrupt politicians destroyed. While the first half of Tony Scott's visually stunning Man on Fire is a set up for Creasy's unintentional attachment to Pita, the second half is action-packed and bloody, pulling no punches in a race against time. Grainy, jumpy sequences support the accelerating tension as Creasy moves closer to his target, a man so well-protected that he is known only as "the voice". The rough-cut cinematography intensifies the sinister brutality of a city that is morally compromised by opportunistic crime.

Washington is intense and brooding, his single-mindedness contrasted against the chattering of enterprising families who struggle for space in a chaotic city, but there are equally strong supporting actors, Christopher Walken as an old Black-ops friend, now retired with a family and a distaste for murder and Mickey Rourke, in a small but believable bit as a corrupt broker. The real beauty of the film is the attachment between Creasy and Pita, the little girl who chips away at the frozen heart of a world-weary man on a downhill slide, his final chance at redemption. Like a wounded elephant, Creasy follows his instincts, utterly merciless in his quest for the head of the kidnapping ring. Honor wins out against senseless violence for one brief moment, before the city sinks back into the mire of corruption. Luan Gaines/2005.

Studio: Fox Home Entertainme
Director: Tony Scott
Denzel Washington
Dakota Fanning
Christopher Walken

DVD title: Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
Productgroup: DVD
Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi - movie DVD cover picture
5 stars for the entire star wars saga

The greatest six part story I've ever watched or read.
I refuse to review these episodes seperate, they all have their places in the saga.
Can't wait to have all six on DVD.

Studio: 20TH Century Fox
Mark Hamill
Harrison Ford
Carrier Fisher

DVD title: The Nutty Professor
Productgroup: DVD
The Nutty Professor - movie DVD cover picture
"Thank you very much I'm fatter...I mean flattered"

As great as "Coming to America" was, this movie may have the best special effects of any movie I have ever seen in terms of people, not objects. Murphy shows his amazing talent as he portrays six different characters. I believe this is Murphy's first film as where he plays the character of a genius. Several scenes are funny, but my favorite ones include the night at the club when Buddy Love is on stage and outperforms the comedian and also at the dinner table where the family is present. While watching this, I easily develop an appetite from looking at the food. Personally, I think all the jokes (especially at the club and dinner table) are very funny as well as the movie's message. If one takes offense to this movie, that is their problem amd I'm sure the directors could care less as well. Overall, I would have to say this is the best "Murphy" movie of the 1990's.

Studio: Universal Studios
Director: Tom Shadyac
Eddie Murphy

DVD title: Family Guy, Vol. 1 (Seasons 1 & 2)
Productgroup: DVD
Family Guy, Vol. 1 (Seasons 1 & 2) - movie DVD cover picture
Smart and Funny

Family Guy is the best show EVER MADE! The characters are all brilliant. The jokes are original and hilarious. It pokes fun at everything on the planet. THIS SHOW IS GENIOUS! It is 100 times better than the Simpsons and Futurama combined! BUY IT NOW!

Studio: Fox Home Entertainme
Seth Macfarlane

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TopSellers at Amazon - Comedy movie DVD disks

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TopSellers at Amazon - Sci-Fi and Fantasy movie DVD disks

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Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter (J.K. Rowling))
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