Film DVD related reviews

DVD title: Empire Records
Productgroup: DVD
Empire Records - movie DVD cover picture

This is the sort of movie I do housecleaning to, because I can zip and dance around with a broom as I watch. Teeming over with great music (mostly rock, but other genres as well), "Empire Records" is a delightfully funny and endearing teen comedy, definitely a cut above average.
"The time to hesitate is through," quotes Lucas (Rory Cochrane), employee at Empire Records, when he finds that Empire is about to be sold to the massive chain "MusicTown." So he gambles away nine thousand bucks (the store's, not his) in an effort to increase the money and save Empire. Needless to say, his boss Joe (Anthony Lapaglia) is very, very angry -- since the money Lucas lost would have enabled him to buy a partnership in owning Empire.
The next day has an aging pop star, the arrogant Rex Manning (Maxwell Caulfield) coming to Empire for a signing. Virginal superstudent Corey (Liv Tyler) is planning to have Rex as her "first time," while her best pal A.J. (Johnny Whitworth) is planning to tell her how he feels about her. Lucas catches a very hostile young shoplifter (Brendan Sexton). There's also depressed Debra, and crazy Mark and Eddie. And as dark personal secrets spin out of control, the employees become determined to save their beloved music store. "Damn the man! Save the Empire!"
Any movie that stars primarily teens is going to automatically be spat on by critics. But "Empire" knows it's not a serious movie, and it's happy that way. After all, people dance on the rooftops, shoplifting is a contact sport, and customers are pirouetting in the aisles with the clerks. Realism? Who cares? It's funny and cute. There's some romance (most of it is kept low-key, like Debra and Berko), a seduction or two, and about five seconds of violence.
The reviewer who said this was one of the most quotable movies ever is right: there are dozens of lovely lines in here. Best of those is A.J. rehearsing his profession of love: "You make me feel like a bath. You're like vanilla ice cream -- FRENCH vanilla ice cream!" Not to mention Joe's, "He's the man, I'm the idiot, you're the screwup, and we are ALL losers." And I love the soundtrack, teeming over with the Cranberries, the Gin Blossoms, Better than Ezra, and dozens of others. Hard metal, rock, ballads, and so on -- some of it is background music, some of it has the cast singing and dancing along, and "Sugarhigh" is performed by Coyote Shivers and Renee Zellweger at the end.
The actors are also quite good. Anthony Lapaglia plays Joe with endearing frustration and crabbiness; Caulfield is good as the arrogant, slightly effeminate Rex. Liv Tyler swings between girlish sweetness and very occasional violent rage; Whitworth is cute and insecure as a guy who can't get the words "I love you" out of his mouth. Renee Zellweger is also great in an early role, never making the promiscuous Gina 2-D or slutty. And Rory Cochrane is great as the extremely dignified, human-fortune-cookie Lucas. Coyote Shivers (Tyler's real-life ex-stepfather), Robin Tunney, James Wills, and Ethan Embry (as the endearingly crazy Mark) round off the cast. The main sour note is Sexton, who is rather flat and over-the-top as Warren.
Overall, "Empire Records" is a wonderful light teen comedy, not stupid or gross, just cute. And it's a must for fans of good rock. (And if anyone can tell me what band did that "I want some money" song, I would be very grateful)

Studio: Warner Studios
Director: Allan Moyle
Anthony LaPaglia
Debi Mazar

DVD title: The World Is Not Enough
Productgroup: DVD
The World Is Not Enough - movie DVD cover picture
Possibly the best Bond to date.

I thought this movie was great. The action is stunning and it has some of the most beautiful Bond Girls yet. I was disappointed with the villain, Renard. I find it hard to belive that he can move if he has no senses in him. WATCH OUT! DON'T READ ON I'M ABOUT TO GIVE AWAY A SPOILER FOR THOSE WHO HAVEN'T SEEN THE MOVIE! I was disappointed at the fact that Valentin Zukouvsky and Q were both retired from the franchise in this installment. they were both very good characters. END OF SPOILER WARNING. Anyways, the movie is great and Sophie Marceau is a superb actress displaying huge talent in expressing emotion and vigor in her performance. A lot of witty lines and the introduction of Q's partner, "R", help to make this an A+ movie. As for the picture and sound on the disc: just as good as the movie. Solid picture and excellent sound accompanied by a wide list of features, with the most interesting being the audio commentary by the director, make this a DVD to be watched over and over again. Pick this baby up now.

Studio: Warner Home Video
Director: Michael Apted
Pierce Brosnan
Sophie Marceau

DVD title: Cube
Productgroup: DVD
Cube - movie DVD cover picture
Great sci-fi nail-biter!

This is one of the best sci-fi's I have ever seen. Ever. It kept me totally on the edge of my seat the entire time, and I wasn't disappointed with it. There were so many HUGE twists. Great premise and decent special effects are a major plus. The acting is somewhat amateur, but it does not ruin the effect of the film at all! Very, very suspenseful film!

Studio: Vidmark/Trimark
Director: Vincenzo Natali
Nicole de Boer
Nicky Guadagni
David Hewlett
Andrew Miller
Maurice Dean Wint

DVD title: Ike - Countdown to D-Day
Productgroup: DVD
Ike - Countdown to D-Day - movie DVD cover picture
Hallmark of leadership

I watch this film every weekend since I got it weeks back. What a leader! Ike was a natural leader, his concern for the young men and woman that would die in battle only shows how a true leader should feel about a decision for war. Tom Selleck does a masterful job and should win an emmy and a golden globe for this. He absolutely digs into the character bring out the fair, hard and emotional parts very well.

The directing is excellent, drawing in close when needed and an excellent combination of music and background to capture the momment. I would recommend an emmy also for the director.

This movie should be shown in any leadership class. The world benefited from two great men being together at the same time, Ike and Churchil. I cannot immagine if Montgomery had been made supreme commander, it would have been a riot house. Ike handled the huge egos of the Generals and the political and media pressure very well.

Ike says something, as he contemplates the decision to attack..."THERE IS NO GLORY IN WAR" true, how true...At the end he says "WE WILL NEVER SEE THE KIND OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO DIED EVER AGAIN"

Studio: Columbia Tristar Hom
Director: Robert Harmon

DVD title: Little Women - Collector's Edition
Productgroup: DVD
Little Women - Collector's Edition - movie DVD cover picture
Little Woman-1994-

The book that Louisa May Alcott wrote touched us all, and now the movie is even better. It's a heartwarming family movie, that is now my favorite. I recommend every one see it. I believe it will touch you.

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: Gillian Armstrong
Winona Ryder
Kirsten Dunst
Claire Danes
Susan Sarandon

DVD title: Verdi - Rigoletto / Downes, Gavanelli, Schafer, Alvarez, Royal Opera House
Productgroup: DVD
Verdi - Rigoletto / Downes, Gavanelli, Schafer, Alvarez, Royal Opera House - movie DVD cover picture
I 'second' all the 5-star reviewers,

This opera has MORE than enough bonus points to make up for the awful sound 'editing': the orchestra often blasts you out of your seat, shortly after you adjust it so you can hear the singing properly. Perhaps they can re-release it with the fixes. I would have no problem buying another copy, if that was the case. The first time I viewed it, I had to play the poingnent duet sequence between Rigoletto and Gilda about 8 times. I was still tearing up, even then. Gavanelli grabbed the reins of his character, and never let go. And Schafer, as Gilda, projects a fabulous beauty onstage that is rarely seen. Any man with a pulse will want to adopt her, or marry her, or BOTH. She may appear frail, but she aces every note, hits every mark with a hammer, and makes you believe this story is REAL. [...] The gruesome orgy-out-of control in the first scene is quite graphic, and scary, but it really sets the stage for the inevitable conclusion. [...] There are lots of copies on sale,worth double the price, but you will NEVER see MINE.(unless they release one that is sound-edited) Click on "Buy Now", and get ready to rock-and-roll!

Studio: Opus Arte
David McVicar
Paolo Gavanelli

DVD title: Something Wild
Productgroup: DVD
Something Wild - movie DVD cover picture
My favorrite movie... on DVD at last!

I first saw this movie in the theaters, and I remember sitting spellbound, utterly enthralled by the adept manner in which Jonathan Demme blends comedy, romance, drama, and suspense in a single film. For years, I would catch it whenever I could on cable -- or, if I were hanging with a "virgin" friend who had never before seen the film, I'd scrounge up a rental copy (pan-n-scan, of course) at the local video store. All told, I've seen it about a dozen times, twice as many times as I have seen any other movie -- but only once in the widescreen format in which it was originally composed.
When people ask me what my favorite movie is, I tell them without hesitation, "Something Wild." Inevitably, a look of comprehension is absent from their face. I briefly explain the plot, describe Melanie Griffith in the black wig, Jeff Daniels as the nebbishy accountant, and Ray Liotta as the Lulu's sinister ex-con (IMHO, career-best performances for all three), and faces begin to light up. Most people have caught at least a part of this film on Comedy Central and recognize it (if only slightly) from those heavily edited screenings, which is a shame because this movie needs to be seen in its unexpurgated form in order to really gain an appreciation of its genius.
So you can imagine my delight when I opened a birthday gift from my girlfriend and found inside a copy of "Something Wild" on DVD. If I were capable of squealing, I would have. You see, I was under the impression that this was one of those "lost titles" that would never be released on DVD. Yet there it was, in my hands, a true cinematic masterpiece, one of the best films of the 80s, my favorite movie. Sigh. What a great birthday present!
Now that I have recovered from the initial giddiness of actually owning the flick and watched it once or twice, I can report objectively that the DVD release isn't perfect. The transfer is average (but nevertheless widescreen -- yay!), with a slightly washed-out look that minimizes some of the impact of the garish 80s couture. And the disk is pretty straightforward. You can select from 16 scenes, watch in the original English or dubbed Spanish, watch with French or Spanish subtitles, and view an irrelevant theatrical trailer. Or, you can just live with the fact that this great film is finally available on DVD and watch it start to finish, over and over again.

Studio: MGM/UA Video
Director: Jonathan Demme
Jeff Daniels
Melanie Griffith

DVD title: Elvis - That's the Way It Is (Special Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
Elvis - That's the Way It Is (Special Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
The absolutely best documentary about Elvis

This video was fantastic. It is for us oldies that loved him from the start but also for the next generation that is coming up. Most of his work, movies, he wasn't proud of, but this is one that he can be very happy about. It showed him, with his friends, and I use that term lightly since most people, betrayed him, used him, promoted him, but you could see he loved them and still does I am sure. THis shows the vital part of him that lived in these songs he sang. I know to every woman there is a Elvis that is hers, that sings to her, only her, he made us feel that way. It showed a time in his life, when he was in the best physical form, even tho all this performing would take it toil on him in a few short years, in this he was the best, it showed how he new music and did things to songs his way, and made them so much better. This was great, and that is all I know to say except it was AWESOME!! it is truly a video that if you do not own, so you can watch it over, and show it to our children and grandkids, to show where it all started, and the man they always heard about, Elvis Presley.

Studio: Warner Studios
Director: Denis Sanders
Elvis Presley

DVD title: American Pie 2 (Full Screen Collector's Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
American Pie 2 (Full Screen Collector's Edition) - movie DVD cover picture

I liked it better the the first but I found that this version cuts out some sceens that r in the original so i'd get the original instead.

Studio: Universal Studios
Director: James B. Rogers (II)
Jason Biggs
Seann William Scott

DVD title: American History X
Productgroup: DVD
American History X - movie DVD cover picture
A Magnificent Movie With Brilliant Acting

When i went to the theater with my girlfriend to see this movie i did not think it would be good. Boy was i wrong. It tured out to be one of the best movies that i have ever seen. It was a magnificent movie. I think that it taught everyone a lesson about the burdens of hate. The acting was great. Edward Norton was brilliant. He was flawless in this movie. This movie was a masterpiece to say the least and i hold it in high regards. I highly recomend this movie.

Studio: New Line Home Entertainment
Director: Tony Kaye
Edward Norton
Edward Furlong

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