Film DVD related reviews

DVD title: Krull
Productgroup: DVD
Krull - movie DVD cover picture
Definatly a fun B-Movie

Right up there with Buckaroo Banzai, Big Trouble in Little China, Highlander (#1) this is one of the good B-Movies of the 1980's. Fun performances and interesting characters make this movie fun. VERY cliche but ya know sometimes that is a good thing. And Krull will always be in my top list of great films form my youth.

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: Peter Yates
Ken Marshall
Lysette Anthony

DVD title: Depeche Mode: The Videos 86-98
Productgroup: DVD
Depeche Mode: The Videos 86-98 - movie DVD cover picture
A Great video watch from a person stuck in the 1980s

I think Depeche Mode were a very underrated group of musicians From the 1980s through to the present.They were a groundbreaking British techno-pop group,that some people were not ready for and therefore didn't apreciate.This quartet from a london suburb'who took its name from a french fanzine or magazine were popular mostly with the british dance crowd in the early 80s.they didn't really make their North American debut untilllate 1985,with their modest hit "People are People"(Which isn'tincluded on this DVD).And in 1989 they released a film\concertalbum at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena California,titled "Depeche Mode 101,directed by DA Pennabaker.There is one live video takenfrom this concert which appears on the DVD,titled "Everything counts",which was popular at the time,I think it still looks goodtoday on DVD ,even after fifteen years.
This video collection captures the groups performance of the period from 86-98 as described in the title of the DVD .This DVD contains 23 videos in a total of two hours ,plus some short film at the end of the DVD ,also included are some videos from their two big albums "Violator" and "Songs of Faith and Devotion"in the early 90s.
What i think is great about the DVD is that the better videosare the earlier ones ,up to and including 1992.
From 86-92 i thought they were great,But from 92-98 the band were not as interesting ,I found that during that period ,thevideos looked and sounded the same ,so about half of the video is top rate,However the sound and picture quality is excellentall the way through. I would recommend this DVD to any DepecheMode fan .If you are looking for something earlier than 1986then this is not the right DVD for you.If you want something from their last album "Exiter" live,you should purchace the DVD"One niht in paris.

Studio: Wea/Warner Bros.

DVD title: The Flintstones - The Complete First Season
Productgroup: DVD
The Flintstones - The Complete First Season - movie DVD cover picture
the flinstones glory

only second to the simpsons, the flinstones is the best animated tv show.a jewel in animation history. a great plus is the original tracks in english. spanish and french. for mexicans like me this is as best as it gets. it takes me back to the golden age of american shows dubbled in spanish, when the translation were done with real quality.listening to Pedro(Fred)in its original track is pure dvd ever.

Studio: Warner Home Video

DVD title: Pirates of the Caribbean - The Curse of the Black Pearl (2-Disc Collector's Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
Pirates of the Caribbean - The Curse of the Black Pearl (2-Disc Collector's Edition) - movie DVD cover picture

all I can say is wow. Johnny Depp does an amazing job with the character, and this movie made him my official favorite actor. The story plot itself is great, it mixes the old Disney World theme of the ride "Pirates of the Carribean" with a good ol' surprise that pops up right in the middle (you have to find that out for yourself). The special effects literally couldn't be better, as well as the acting. Certainly a "must have" for anyone who likes movies in the least bit!

Studio: Walt Disney Home Video
Director: Gore Verbinski
Johnny Depp
Geoffrey Rush
Orlando Bloom
Keira Knightley
Jonathan Pryce

DVD title: National Security (Special Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
National Security (Special Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
Martin Lawrences best movie since Blue Streak

National Security is the perfect movie to see this year. I saw it the day it came out and I want to see it again. It stars one of the best comedians today (Martin Lawrence) and another funny misfit (Steve Zahn from SAVING SILVERMAN). The movie is funny yet has good action. Here is the plot.Steve Zhan plays Hank. An LA policeman who is bent on revenge to finding the guy who killed his partner in gun battle. Lawrence is Earl. A guy who just got kicked out of the force after turning a practice session into a disaster. Plus Earl always thinks that people have a problem with him because he is black- not because of his attitude. One day while Earl is trying to have a regular day, he realizes he left his keys in his car and tried to stick his hand in and get it. Hank catches him and interrogates what is going on. While that is happening, a bee comes by and Earl is allergic to bees and so Hank tries to get the bee away but the way they were positioned, it looked like Hank was beating on Earl and a guy who near by got the whole thing on camera. Because of that, a huge commotion started thru out the state about a white cop beating a black civilian. Hank is fired from the police and sent to jail for 6 months and Earl just kicks back and lets the whole thing happen even though he knows it was a bee.Hank serves his six months and after getting out he tries to do something similar toward police work- a job as a security guard. While on the job, Hanks gets called about a robbery and goes to check it out. It seems that the robbers were the guys he had an encounter with in the past and one of the guys was his partner's murderer. Hank goes into action right away and a fellow security guard who worked in the building comes to back up Hank and that person just happens to be Earl!! The two would've had a long argument but realized it wasn't the time and chased the bad guys but they were stopped by the police. Police that Hank kidnapped Earl for revenge but Earl decided not to have anything bad happen to Hank this time although it would have felt real good. Hank goes on to try find these guys who did the robbery because its personal and Earl thinks it is personal too because one them called him a monkey- and he thinks he was called that because he is black. Both Hank and Earl go on the case even though they are not policemen and along the way they go through many arguments that sometimes lead toward zany consequences like fighting over which to go on the street- right or left and they end up jumping the highway into a pile of portable toilets. Hank and Earl must try to put the past aside so they can help each other to try and find these bad guys.National Security loaded with intense action, thrilling chase scenes, gun battles, fist fights, and many parts that will make you laugh hard. It's definitely as good as blue Steak and you should see it while it is still in theaters.

Studio: Columbia Tristar Hom
Director: Dennis Dugan
Martin Lawrence
Steve Zahn
Colm Feore

DVD title: Farewell My Concubine
Productgroup: DVD
Farewell My Concubine - movie DVD cover picture
the best chinese film i've ever seen...

... and i'm chinese. this film is ridiculously well-made, as perfect in the realm of asian cinema as something like "the godfather" is in western cinema. read bill kang's review for specifics on the brilliant cinematography, acting, direction, and such, for his review represents my opinions well...
... so why am i writing this here? i don't write reviews often, but astonished as i was that there were reviewers who actually gave this film a rating of less than 5 stars, i decided to sift through all the entries and find out exactly what they had against this film... and not so surprisingly, the negative reviews came from westerners who thought that they might know better about chinese culture and history from reading books that other westerners have written than the chinese directors and scriptwriters themselves who've lived their entire lives in china, hong kong, and taiwan. -_-"...
is this film really that violent, really that gory? graphically, there is virtually no violence on screen... c'mon, hollywood is all blood and guts! that which disturbs and unsettles the viewer here is the psychological violence and perversion that chen so subtly (yet very effectively) communicates. and i'm sorry to shatter your ideas of the orient being an exotic paradise of incense, tiger balm, and petite women, but yes, psychological perversion can exist in a culture that has been around for over five thousand years. yes, eunichs did exist aplenty, and yes, these poor things did tend to have strange sexual interests, and no, you don't know nearly enough about chinese history to even begin placing things into context and making judgements.
... one reviewer was even kind enough to remind us not to let our children watch the film for the violence and the unsettling themes involved... well perhaps that's what the R-rating is for? just a thought... maybe that's why the film is rated R... i could be wrong...
if you are expecting kung-fu fighting, choreographed swordplay, or any other sort of monkey-antics some americans have come to associate with chinese filmmaking, do not watch this movie. your narrow mind might burst from the depth, breadth, and sheer beauty that radiates from every frame of this film, and the complexity of a plot that shows characters interacting with history and culture as much as they do with each other will completely escape you. if you're a viewer that's outraged by the audacity of the filmmakers behind such controversial films as, say, "monty python and the holy grail", this film is not for you. this film was not made in hollywood; do not expect a hollywood film. it is a film that is smart, unsettling, enlightening, and even educational, but the umbrella attribute that permeates the film above all and keeps us hypnotized is its breathtaking beauty...

Studio: Miramax Home Entertainment
Director: Kaige Chen
Leslie Cheung
Fengyi Zhang
Li Gong

DVD title: Peter Pan
Productgroup: DVD
Peter Pan - movie DVD cover picture
By FAR the best version!

I was about five years old when I first saw this on television. (Dating myself, of course - circa 1954) It hasn't lost its charm at all, and Mary Martin is the Peter Pan of all time. Not because I am biased, but when you first see her, as I did when I was a child, you forget about gender. She is magical, and musical, and mystical, and she embodies the character of J.M. Barrie's "Pan" to the hilt. Then there are the songs - "I'm Flying," "Never Land," "I Won't Grow Up," and others, and it's incredibly enchanting.
Cyril Ritchard is marvelous as Captain Hook, as well, and he embodies the role as well. You know that he's gone wrong, and the semi-comic, don't take me to seriously mischief he brings to the role is neat. He sings on "Tarantella," and "Captain Hook," and when the Crocodile makes its appearance, you are at first saddened, but glad that he has gone away.
All in all, this is superb family entertainment, and it is highly recommended. 10 stars would be more like it!!!

Studio: Goodtimes Home Video
Director: Vincent J. Donehue

DVD title: Holiday
Productgroup: DVD
Holiday - movie DVD cover picture
One of my all time favorite movies

This wonderful film has long been my all-time favorite movie. Both the script and the performances are so, so memorable. A perfect showcase for both Hepburn and Grant and some wonderful character actors. Perfect Christmas gift.

Director: George Cukor
Katharine Hepburn
Cary Grant

DVD title: The Last of Sheila
Productgroup: DVD
The Last of Sheila - movie DVD cover picture
A fun and intriguing murder mystery from the 1970s

Sheila Green is killed by a hit-and-run driver following a lavish party. A year later, and still no one arrested for his wife's death, movie mogul Clinton Green invites 6 guests to his yacht in the Mediterranean but not for the usual rest and relaxation. You see, each of the 6 guests was at that party one year ago, and it's possible one of them may be hiding something about that night, and Clinton may know who....
This is a a great, under-acknowledged murder mystery, filled with many film stars of the 1970s: James Coburn as the devilish mogul Clinton Green; Richard Benjamin as Tom, the has-been screenwriter; Joan Hackett as Lee, Tom's wife; Dyan Cannon as Christine, the busy head of a talent agency; James Mason as Philip, a reknowned movie director; and Ian McShane and Racquel Welch as the married couple, Anthony and Alice. And, they all have fun with the incredilby detailed script by Stephen Sondheim and Anthony Perkins. Both Sondheim and Perkins were known to love murder mysteries and intricate puzzles, and it shows in the crafting of the surprising twists and turns of the script.
What's even more intriging is that you get involved in trying to solve the mystery yourself. All the clues are there, and if you pay close attention, you can figure it out. But one of the more interesting surprises is the theme song, "Friends" sung by Bette Midler. (One of her trademark songs This is a fun movie that really draws you in and keeps you until the very end.

Studio: Warner Home Video
Director: Herbert Ross
Richard Benjamin
James Coburn
James Mason

DVD title: The Big Country
Productgroup: DVD
The Big Country - movie DVD cover picture
A Man For All Seasons

The BIG COUNTRY has it all: big stars, excellent supporting cast, interesting story, familiar music, and colorful scenry. John Ford used this same combination to produce a series of successful Westerns, and it is wonderful to see someone else use a similiar pattern. It is the unspoken theme that sets this film apart: A Big Country requires a Big Man. And exactly what kind of Big Man is needed? Well, the contrasts are what make this film interesting.
Major Henry Terrill has all the appearance of integrity, but none of the substance. Rufus Hannassey is nearly the opposite. Each of these men have a top hand. Terrill has Steve Leech, who he raised. Rufus has his son Buck. Leech and Buck are opposites: Buck is one of the nastest bad guys you've ever seen, while Leech seems to embody all the stero-typical hero elements. The opposites are not there just for the story's sake, they beg the question "What is the measure of a man?"
It is also tempting to suggest, "What is the measure of a woman?" because even the women in this story seem to be opposites: Patricia Terrill is as spoiled and impulsive as her friend, Julie Maragon is self reliant and reflective.
Into this world comes James McKay. Almost immediately McKay comes in conflict with the appearance-only nature of the Terrill side of the conflict. Leech, like his mentor, needs an outward show to back up his authority. When McKay demonstrates that appearances do not translate into real authority, that integrity means much more, Leech's view of the world begins to crumble.
The conflict between Rufus, who has a measure of integrity, and his son, who has no redeeming characteristics, is sad. Near the film's end, McKay forces Rufus to accept the consequences of his integrity.
It is interesting that McKay is really not an intruder, he is (in fact) restoring balance to a community. In the film we learn that Julie Maragon's Grandfather played the role that McKay is obviously going to fill. Unfortunately, because of his death, the Big Country has been going to rack and ruin (as symbolized by the deteriorating Grand House).
One could argue that this film is about who is the rightful heir to the Big Country: the bickering, fighting families or Julie Maragon and her Man. I believe that Wyler answers the question clearly. The rightful heir is he who can maintain balance by means of clear sight and integrity.
I wish this film was released in a Wide Screen version (on DVD). Highly Recommended

Studio: MGM/UA Video
Director: William Wyler
Gregory Peck
Jean Simmons

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