Film DVD related reviews

DVD title: Miami Vice - Season One
Productgroup: DVD
Miami Vice - Season One - movie DVD cover picture
Incredible...that's all I can say, incredible!

The season one episodes have aged quite well. You would think it was CSI or something if it wasn't for the 80's hair and outfits, which of course are part of the appeal of buying Vice in the first place. And the soundtrack? Incredible. I would recommend this DVD to anyone who even half-liked Vice back when it was on TV, or to any collector of great 80's TV series/movies.

Studio: Universal Studios
Don Johnson

DVD title: Cirque du Soleil - Dralion
Productgroup: DVD
Cirque du Soleil - Dralion - movie DVD cover picture
Totally Awesome

I saw Dralion live in Minneapolis two years ago and can say that having this disk is as good as having a front row ticket. I can say that because when I was there, my seat was front row, in the center. I put off buying this DVD for a long time because I thought that there would inevitably be differences compared to the live show. Well, I was right. There's some stuff in the live show that you don't get on this disk. Such as the pre-show clown stuff (anyone who saw the live show will know what I'm talking about). However, the disk has some actual benefits over seeing the show live. For one thing, the sound quality on the disk makes the magnificent musical soundtrack much easier to hear, and you can turn the volume up as loud as you want. You also might get to see an act that wasn't playing when/if you saw it live (the foot juggling act, for example, was replaced with a different act when I was there). And of course, you can play it over and over. There's also the multi-angle feature for some of the acts--this is the first DVD I've seen that utilizes this feature.
All in all, I'd say that this is the coolest DVD in my collection. I like it even better than the Quidam DVD. I watched it three times when I first got it, and quite frankly, I'd rather be watching it right now than sitting here at this desk writing this review. :-) And, if you haven't had the chance to see Dralion live, owning this DVD is just about as good, especially when you compare the cost of this DVD to the price of a ticket (of course, you really should also see the show live if you get the chance--it's an experience you'll never forget).

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios

DVD title: Around the World in 80 Days (Miniseries)
Productgroup: DVD
Around the World in 80 Days (Miniseries) - movie DVD cover picture
Around the World in 80 Days (1989 version)

This 2 disc 5 hour version of Around the World in 80 Days was pretty much like the others -(The original Mike Todd version starring David Niven- and the newest one starring Jackie Chan.)
However, if you are a Pierce Brosnan fan, this is 5 delightful hours of watching delicious Pierce Brosnan. His "English" behavior is quite "proper" and amusing, and he carries this movie easily.
The "All Star Cast" was very enjoyable, too.

Studio: A.D. Vision
Director: Buzz Kulik
Pierce Brosnan
Eric Idle
Julia Nickson-Soul

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
Awesome Movie! Depp Shines!!!

Oh my gosh!! This is one of the best movies i have ever seen!!! And Orlando Bloom, Kiera Knightley, and Johnny Depp is in it!
The DVD is GREAT because you can wath the actors go through sword training, get into makeup and so much more. Plus you get commentaries, behind the scenes stuff, pictures, and SOOOOOO much more! I would defenitely bye it if I were you!
There was one part in the second disk that skipped a bit, but that's it.

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

DVD title: Good Will Hunting
Productgroup: DVD
Good Will Hunting - movie DVD cover picture
A brilliant film.

This is one of the best films I have ever seen. Matt Damon does full justice to his 'troubled genius' character, with Robin Williams giving him excellent support. Ben Afflect is good too, as Damon's friend. Gus Van Sant's direction is flawless, as he builds up Damon's character. The movie is touching and meaningful, with the ending being the icing on the cake. If you want to see a truly inspiring film, this one is for you!

Studio: Miramax Home Entertainment
Director: Gus Van Sant
Robin Williams
Matt Damon
Ben Affleck

DVD title: At First Sight
Productgroup: DVD
At First Sight - movie DVD cover picture
Have you ever listened to the rain.....

Yes, this is a very emotional story and I believe it was based on a true story. If you watch this movie on the surface, you may actually agree with some of the other reviews. If you look deeper into the story, this is about two people who awaken from a sleep. One from blindness and the other from unawareness.
Amy (Mira Sorvino) has a stressful job and seeks refuge at a spa. There she meets Virgil (Val Kilmer) who not only helps her relax, he helps her view the world differently. Amy becomes very attracted to Virgil. His blindness is not a barrier between them because they find that they relate to one another on a much deeper level.
Amy wants Virgil to try to regain his site and miraculously his site is restored. The only question long will it last?
This movie deals with some deep issues which I rarely see brought to the screen. We rarely look up at the sky in our busy lives. We take so much for granted. What this movie succeeds in doing is making you realize how much there is in your life to truly be grateful for. Mira Sorvino is such a delightful actress and it was a treat to see Val Kilmer in a romantic movie. I think romance suits them both.
You will cry for most of the movie. It is really emotional. Sometimes you want to feel deeply and sometimes you want to laugh. This movie will make you feel as deeply as any movie can.
The next time it rains, close your eyes and listen. You will be amazed at how much you don't hear when you see the rain. It is only when you close your eyes that you will hear every drop. Every drop you cry will be very healing. In a way, a massage for the soul.

Studio: Mgm/Ua Studios
Director: Irwin Winkler
Val Kilmer
Mira Sorvino

DVD title: Drop Squad
Productgroup: DVD
Drop Squad - movie DVD cover picture

Drop Squad is a great flick that addresses the negative mindsets that destroy the black community.Everything about this movie is excellent including the soundtrack (as all Spike Lee soundtracks are) The terrible thing though is that when this movie was in the 1st-run theaters,it's title conflicted with "Drop Zone" came out @ the same time,so it was pulled from many theaters.GET THIS FLICK!!

Studio: Universal Studios
Director: David C. Johnson
Eriq La Salle
Vondie Curtis-Hall

DVD title: Bride and Prejudice
Productgroup: DVD
Bride and Prejudice - movie DVD cover picture
Delightful! Fun (if not entirely faithful) adaptation of Austen.

I wanted to see this film because I'm a big fan of the TV adaptations of "Pride and Prejudice" (and have read Austen's book many times). So I will try to review this movie from the perspective of a big P&P/Austen fan.

First of all, if you are watching this film as someone who is very familiar with Pride and Prejudice, prepare yourself for some changes. It captures the essence of the story, but things are shifted around, shortened, condensed, and so forth. However, rest assured that the main characters all are there, and the general plot points (the ones that make Pride and Prejudice what it is) are all there.

"Lizzie" is now Lalitha, played by the incredibly lovely and charming Aishwarya Rai, who is a number 1 movie star in India (and you can see why).

Martin Henderson plays "Will Darcy," and while he's very attractive, he lacks a certain charisma at the beginning (but hey! We're supposed to dislike Darcy!). However, he does a servicable job and at the end of the film you really warm up to him.

Naveen Andrews plays Balraj Bingley (aka "Mr. Bingley") and to me, he steals the show when he's onscreen. He has a whole lot of pizazz (especially in a great dance sequence early in the film).

Marsha Mason plays Darcy's mom, (she substitutes for the role of "Lady Catherine DeBurgh"). Her role is not as prominent in this movie as in the novel (or in the TV productions of P&P), however, look for a deleted scene on the DVD to see a key P&P scene between her and Lalitha ("Lizzy").

Mr. Wickham is here, as is one Miss Bingley (who doesn't seem quite as venomous as the two Bingley sisters in the book).

There are now 4 "Bennet" (now Bakshi) sisters in this version--it appears like the character of Kitty has been elemintated.

Mr. and Mrs. Bakshi ("Bennet") are *great* in this version, though their characters are not as clearly defined as in the book (the dad is not so much of a bookworm, the mom isn't quite so much of an over-the-top ninny--though she's pretty silly at times).

There's also a "Mr. Collins" character, a "Charlotte Lucas" character, "Georgina Darcy" character, and so forth. Really, they did an amazing job in adapting this story so it resembles the Austen book as much as it does (while still making it work for 21st Century audiences).

The core plot points of the book are all present here, but big changes have been made in the details, in order to make the story work for modern times (and for people from Indian, British and US cultures). You will recognize the plot points, but sometimes the motivations or outcomes are somewhat different.

There are several big musical (singing and dancing) sequences in the movie. As I found out from one of films presented in the DVD extras, this is an essential part of "Bollywood" films, and this movie was meant to appeal to both Western and Indian audiences. The songs were written by Indian composers, who crafted them to also be appealing to Western audiences. They did a fantastic job. The songs do eat up some screen time, but they are charming, fun, full of color and energy, and I decided that I liked them. A lot. Also, a seemingly unecessary dance number (Ashanti does a seductive dance and song in the middle of the movie) also is part of many Bollywood films (as the director explains in the DVD extras). Apparently, Indian filmgoers expect a big number such as this in the middle of such films.

If you are a big Pride and Prejudice fan you should see this movie, but prepare yourself for what it is and isn't. It's faithful to the book--up to a point, but by no means is it even remotely meant to follow it in any great detail. Characters and situations are altered or tweaked, but they're all (mostly) there. "Mr. Collins" (now called Mr. Kholi) does what he does. There's the big "rejection scene" (if you know the book or TV miniseries, you know what I mean). The "Darcy comes to the rescue" scene is present, but decidedly altered. And so forth and so on. If you know this about the movie going in and can accept this, you won't be disappointed at all.

Another interesting detail: apparently lead actress Rai (who plays Lalitha) will not kiss her leading men onscreen (due to cultural issues in India, it would be the "kiss of death" to her career to kiss onscreen). The lack of kissing in this movie doesn't really matter all that much (the characters are able to show tenderness and affection well enough without it), but the reasons why there isn't any smooching are pretty interesting.

Studio: Walt Disney Home Video
Director: Gurinder Chadha
Aishwarya Rai
Martin Henderson
Nadira Babbar

DVD title: Invasion of the Body Snatchers
Productgroup: DVD
Invasion of the Body Snatchers - movie DVD cover picture
Emotions and humanity...

Is it better to experience life's high happy peaks and its disastrous valleys of pain, or to live in a mediocre stasis with no ups, but no downs either? How important are emotions to the state of humanity?

Such are the questions posed by this influential black and white 1956 classic. Kevin McCarthy is great as the last hope Dr. Bennell, who must escape from the pod people to warn neighboring towns about the body snatchers! The story is great, the acting is good, the lighting and cinematography prove that you don't need today's modern colorization.

Its just an all around great watch.

Studio: Republic Studios
Director: Don Siegel
Kevin McCarthy
Dana Wynter

DVD title: Friends - The Complete Eighth Season
Productgroup: DVD
Friends - The Complete Eighth Season - movie DVD cover picture
'Bout Time

I have never been a fan of buying movies much less tv shows, however, after getting Season 1 as a gift I was hooked. I have all 7 seasons and have been checking for Season 8 release date. Whenever it is snowy or a boring day I just throw one of these discs in and just enjoy probably one of the best shows of my generation. I know that is a hard argument, most of the shows premises are a little hard to believe (the apartments, clothes, free time, etc.) but it is just really funny and smartly written. I cannot wait to have all 10 Seasons.

Studio: Warner Home Video
Lisa Kudrow

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