Film DVD related reviews

DVD title: Auntie Mame
Productgroup: DVD
Auntie Mame - movie DVD cover picture
Great movie, great transfer, too bad there's no DVD extras

My absolute favorite film of all time - and finally in DVD format!!! Could life get any better?!It's a great joy to at last be able to view Auntie Mame's trailers, and the picture quality provided by DVD is a great improvement over VHS. But enough of the technical stuff - let's get on to the film!I don't know quite where to start in singing the praises of Auntie Mame - the humor, the message, the music, the costumes (oh, God - such wonderful costumes - Orry Kelly's best), everything - timeless in its charm. Rosalind Russell is just amazing - her portrayal of this legendary character is perfection itself. And her supporting actors are just marvelous, as well - Coral Browne as Vera Charles is tremendous. And whoever says that the role of Ito is an embarrassment takes life too seriously. The film flows beautifully, and makes one wonder, "why does this ever have to end?" One can easily see that the film is based on Patrick Dennis' stage play, complete with fade-outs, but that doesn't take anything away from it. Rather, I feel it adds to the charm.If you haven't seen Auntie Mame, please do so. If you haven't seen it in awhile, have another look. And if you've just seen it recently, isn't it worth another viewing? This film is just that good - timeless humor and touching soul. My only question is...why on earth did they have to go and create that monstrosity with Lucille Ball? It brings down the integrity of this film, a real crime.Please consider purchasing this DVD, even if you already have the film on VHS. The special features are really great, and the picture quality is improved immensely. Also, if you haven't read the book, definitely give it a chance. I think it's even better than the film - there's so much to it that just couldn't fit into the film.

Studio: Warner Home Video
Director: Morton DaCosta
Rosalind Russell
Forrest Tucker

DVD title: Spy Hard
Productgroup: DVD
Spy Hard - movie DVD cover picture
Leslie Nielsen Rocks in Spy Hard!!!-Yankovic's Theme Sucks!!

I have been a big fan of Leslie Nielsen ever since I first saw The Naked Gun. And Nielsen keeps getting better every time out. Nielsen is at his best in Spy Hard, reluctantly leaving 15 years of retirement to take on Griffith, who wants world domination as well as revenge on Nielsen for halting him. Nielsen in turn, wants revenge on Griffith for killing his girlfriend, (who literally slips through Nielsen's fingers and fell off a cliff to her death), during his last mission. I especially like the part when Charles Durning disquises himself as a chair as tells Nielsen he did it to hide from his wife's lawyer. I also like the part when Nielsen walks into headquarters and sees the combination lock on a fellow agent's briefcase and mistakes it for an Agency gadget. I liked Barry Bostwick as Norm Coleman because he sounds like JFK in every way and because Durning embarasses Bostwick, who wants Durning's job and doesn't like Nielsen. Nicolette Sheridan is a knockout, both as Nielsen's assistant and sexual partner. And being a KGB agent, she's smarter than hell!!! They first meet at an airport, then on Nielsen's plane to Washington, then formally at a resturant, where Nielsen tries to lie as to who he is, but Sheridan doesn't fall for it, as she already knows everything about him. All the while, Sheridan is worried about her father, who is the scienist who built the chip Griffith needs for his plans. So how does Nielsen calm her down, he takes her dancing at a club,(spoofing a scene from Saturday Night Fever). And as I said, Sheridan is a knockout. When she and Nielsen have sex at a fellow agent's apartment, it's the best!!! It's even funnier because while they do it, a missle passes by her window!!! Nielsen's parachuting in the beginning is pretty cool too, but the best part in the entire movie is when Griffith tries to feed Nielsen to some crocs, saying he would be their meal while he, as he puts it, "plays Mortal Kombat with the entire world!!!" I also like Nlelsen's lecture to Griffith about contury and service. As I said in the title of this movie review, Weird Al Yankovic's opening theme sucks!!! Okay, maybe not the whole song. In fact, the only reason i say it sucks is because at the end of the song, in the chorus in particular, Al screws up the whole thing by not adding anything catchy, which he does do in the first part of the song. The first choral verse is "if you're gonna spy, you gotta Spy Hard," which is fine. The second verse is "if you wanna win, you gotta Spy Hard," which is also fine. But the final part kills it. Instead of doing something cool, he just says "The name of this movie is Spy Hard," And then he says you're watching it as if you don't already know. At the end of the movie, he replaces watching with just seen, again as if you don't already know. I don't really like the part about Nielsen's dental plan ethier, but i can stand it compared to the very end of the song. When it comes to laughs, Spy Hard hits a bigger home run than Babe Ruth himself!!! I like the first Naked Gun best of all Nielsen's movies, but Spy Hard gets a very, very, very, very, very, close second, and Wrongfully Accused gets third by just about as close. Spy Hard is worth one rent or a million. I promise you.

Studio: Hollywood Pictures
Director: Rick Friedberg
Leslie Nielsen
Nicollette Sheridan
Charles Durning

DVD title: Les Miserables
Productgroup: DVD
Les Miserables - movie DVD cover picture

I rarely find drama's appealing. However, this was a good movie. It had a good storyline. People were actually acting in the 90's! Liam Neeson is a good actor. He did a great job. I really felt for him. He was put through alot of pain and he still surived. This is a good movie that teaches you about life. Good will always win in the end. The music was really deep. I'm thinking on checking out the soundtrack. I think this movie deserved some more attention. It's worth seeing more than once.

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: Bille August
Liam Neeson
Geoffrey Rush
Uma Thurman

DVD title: Ghost
Productgroup: DVD
Ghost - movie DVD cover picture
A classic in the making

"Ghost" is not a classic film in the manner of "Gone With The Wind" or "Casablanca". However, this little film caught the heart of the public with the hopeful promise of its premise and ending and fifteen years after its first release, it is still being watched. Demi Moore, Patrick Swayze and Tony Goldwyn were all very young when they made this film, but young people were needed for their roles. Whoopi Goldberg does a wonderful job as the medium with a questionable past who is trying hard not to let her better side get the best of her. The Academy cited her work by awarding her an Oscar that year. Also, featured is the wonderful character actor, Vincent Schavelli, as a schizaphrenic ghost who lives in the subway and shows Swayze's character how to "survive" in the world of the living.

The story is simple. Swayze is about to discover that his best friend, Goldwyn, is acting as a go-between in a money laundering scheme. Unknowingly, he has come into possession of the little black book which will bring down the whole scheme. Goldwyn's hired thug kills Swayze during the attempt to get back the book. Moore, as Swayze's fiancee, is devastated and continues her life in deep grief. If her performance lacks depth, it may be that someone in this state is really only going through the motions of living. Swayze is caught in the world of the living, perhaps because of the unfinished business his sudden death has left. As he moves through this world, he discovers what really happened, and why he was attacked. Because Moore is now in possession of the incriminating book, Goldwyn and his henchman must get the book back. The book is also needed because the account numbers where the money is parked are in it. Swayze, needing to warn Moore that she is in danger, uses Goldberg's skills as a medium, to contact her. Information, which only Moore and Swayze knew, is used to convince Moore that Swayze's ghost is still on earth, and Goldberg is acting on his behalf. Swayze discovers that Goldman is going to transfer the money into an offshore account, and, in a very funny sequence, Goldberg dressed up in a bright pink suit and armed with fake identification, withdraws the money and, after some soul searching and pressure, signs the four million dollar check over to a group of nuns collecting money for the homeless. Goldwyn, discovering that the money is gone, goes after Goldberg, and, not able to find her, move on to Moore's apartment. Goldwyn, in his desperation, attacks both Goldberg and Moore and is killed.

As you can see, this is a very straightforward, simple story. The reason it has held its own over the years is that it shows Swayze protecting Moore and bringing the guilty to punishment. Many of us believe in guardian angels. There are also two scenes where Moore, first through Goldberg, and then on her own (because of the pureness of the love she shared with Swayze?) is able to see and touch Swayze. Which of us, having lost someone dear to us, hasn't wished for one more chance to speak to or touch that person, if only for a short while. Finally, Swayze must go because as Goldberg tells him "they are waiting for you". In the distance, we see a bright light and shiny figures. Again, this fulfills the hope of many of that this isn't the end, and there really will be love ones waiting to meet us as we leave this world for the next.

Studio: Paramount Home Video
Director: Jerry Zucker
Patrick Swayze
Demi Moore
Whoopi Goldberg

DVD title: All About Eve
Productgroup: DVD
All About Eve - movie DVD cover picture
My favorite movie

Bette Davis gives her career defining performance as Margo Channing in this film. This film gives a brilliant depiction of the back stabbing and heartache's that go into a play and the Broadway world. Anne Baxter plays the title character of Eve Harrington, the mousy little girl who isn't who she appears to be. She claws her way to the top stepping over Margo, but in the process makes a lot of enemies, which makes me ask the question was it worth it, Eve? George Sanders gives his best performance ever as slimey sneaky Addison DeWitt, the only person in this movie to see through Eve's wall of lies and to confront her about it. Celeste Holm and Gary Merrill are also good in their roles. The one supporting person who really gave an outstanding performance was Thelma Ritter as Margo's assistant, Miss. Birdy Cooper. Thelma Ritter was dazzaling and brilliant in this role and should have won the Oscar that year. This landmark film recieved the most Oscar nominations ever [14].14 Academy Award Nominations including- *Best Picture [1950] *Best Director-Joseph L. Manckewicz *Best Screenplay-Joseph L. Manckewicz Best Actress-Bette Davis Best Actress-Anne Baxter *Best Supporting Actor-George Sanders Best Supporting Actress-Celeste Holm Best Supporting Actress-Thelma Ritter Best Cinematography [B/W] Best Art Direction/Set Decoration[B/W] *Best Costume Design[B/W]-Edith Head *Best Sound Recording Best Film Editing Best Score

Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Bette Davis
Anne Baxter

DVD title: Firefly - The Complete Series
Productgroup: DVD
Firefly - The Complete Series - movie DVD cover picture
Joss Whedon vs. studio executives

This series is the brainchild of writer/director Joss Whedon (whom you might remember from the Buffy and Angel series). He has a wonderful sense of ensemble cast dynamics and a terribly witty writing style(Swearing in Chinese is a nice touch). This series is action comedy at it's finest. Even the theme song, which Joss wrote his-multitalented-self, is catchy.

The characters are well developed and uniquely funny(even the witless thug Jayne is endearing at times) and the interaction they have with eachother are complex and quirky. The swearing in Chinese is a nice touch.

The acting is also excellent. Nathan Fillion is especially superb as the saavy Captain Malcolm Reynolds. From the interviews I saw in the box set, everyone in the cast really felt a part of something great and loved working on the project. Their enthusiasm shows through. Each person brings his/her own strength to the table.

The series starts out a little slow on the plot side, focusing more on developing the characters and mis en scene. You can tell he had big dreams for this series and was going to develop a rich and entertaiing story, but studio executives wanted more whiz bang right away. For some reason they didn't give the series much of a chance and cancelled in the first season. The box set tells air dates for the episodes and includes the unreleased ones.

I'm hoping that the theatrical release of the firefly movie Serenity will evoke enough interest to jumpstart the series again. After watching the final episode in the set, I was left wanting more of the witty camaraderie and tricky plots. There are a lot of questions left unanswered (maybe some will be revealed in the movie) and a feeling that there are many adventures still to come.

Unfortunately, the execs didn't feel the same. But I, for one, am delighted to add this box set to my DVD library and look forward to Joss's future projects.

Studio: Twentieth Century Fox Home Video
Nathan Fillion

DVD title: Eddie Izzard - Dress to Kill
Productgroup: DVD
Eddie Izzard - Dress to Kill - movie DVD cover picture
smart smart humor...

eddie is educated,smart,funny as any I have ever seen. I have never been so impressed with a stand up routine.his humor is totally classy.I am a new fan and have called everyone I know to view him. A ten star man....

Studio: WEA Corp.
Director: Lawrence Jordan (II)
Eddie Izzard

DVD title: Savior
Productgroup: DVD
Savior - movie DVD cover picture
No hope

This is a movie about rebirth and the value of life... several victories of life over death... the man the learns to love life again, the women that gives her life for the child of her torturers, a profound lesson on love and optimism that I had not seen for a while... A superb cast of actors, the beautifull landscape and the traditional songs that grabs you and haunts you... poetry!

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: Predrag Antonijevic
Nastassja Kinski
Dennis Quaid

DVD title: My Fellow Americans
Productgroup: DVD
My Fellow Americans - movie DVD cover picture
A Comedy Must!!

If you enjoy a classic comedy then this is a MUST for you! Lemmon, Garner and Ackroyd make a hysterical mix in this political comedy. My husband had seen this and brought it home ... at first I was skeptical about watching it, but must admit I rolled through the entire thing. It is truly hysterical! Especially the "tuck and roll" scene!
Lauren Bacall adds a nice touch of class to an already hilarious movie. Trust me, this one will leave you in stitches!!

Studio: Warner Studios
Director: Peter Segal
Jack Lemmon
James Garner

DVD title: Fahrenheit 9/11
Productgroup: DVD
Fahrenheit 9/11 - movie DVD cover picture
I cried, laughed, got angry, saw hope....

If you go into this movie thinking that you will get a picture of what precipitated the events of 9/11/01 and its aftermath, you will be disappointed. Michael Moore's primary concern is to make George W. Bush look like a complete idiot. The title is very misleading. This movie is no more than an attempt to discredit the entire anti-terrorist policies of the Bush adminstration. It is very closed-minded and does not give any credit for anything that has gone right in the war on terror. While I do not support all the policies of the Bush adminstration, I do know that we haven't had attacks on American soil by terrorists in 34 months. They must be doing something right. I also could not understand applause by many who attended this film. Their closed-minded hatred was clearly apparent. If you want to get inside a movie theater to beat the heat, see something else. This movie is a combination of fact and fiction. If you like George W. Bush you shouldn't see this film. It will only make you angry.

Studio: Columbia Tristar Hom
Director: Michael Moore (II)
Michael Moore (II)

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