Film DVD related reviews


DVD title: Igby Goes Down
Productgroup: DVD
Igby Goes Down - movie DVD cover picture
Kieran Culkin gets his day.


When I started to watch this, I immediately compared Igby to Holden, there were similarities that I couldn't dismiss. However as I came to the end, Holden was nowhere in my mind, only Igby and his incredibly touching presence throughout this story. Kieran Culkin brought Igby to life in so many detailed ways, he made Igby more clever than I think even the director imagined him to be. What a pretty picture he painted, leaving me wanting more but being satisfied that I got to be a part of his life, even if it was only for a couple of hours. Those hours were golden. Pete Yorn's "Murray" is played as the end credits rolled. What an amazing surprise. Amazing song to end an amazing movie.

Studio: MGM/UA Video
Director: Burr Steers
Actors:
Kieran Culkin
Jeff Goldblum
Susan Sarandon




DVD title: Spirited Away
Productgroup: DVD
Spirited Away - movie DVD cover picture
Greatest animated film ever!!!


When i first watched this film i was absolutely blown away. The Music, the animation, the acting and the storyline are all top-notch and all add to the perfection of this film. Seriously, this film is perfect in every sense of the word and, i absolutely love it. Spirited away will enchant anybody who watches it no matter how old they are. I even managed to get my 45 year old dad to watch it and, no joke, he thought it was amazing.

This is the highest grossing film ever in Japan and one of the highest grossing animated films in the world, which goes to show how fantastic this film is. I watched this film a total of 5 times in the first week I bought it and, it is very rare for me to watch any film twice, never mind five times in one week. Another point to make is the fact that the dubbing on this film is great. The script was slightly changed for the English version so that the words fit into the japanese speaking mouths of the characters. They really hit the nail on the head with this film and if there was one animated film i had advice anybody to get, it would be this one.

Studio: Walt Disney Home Video
Director: Hayao Miyazaki
Actors:
Miyu Irino



DVD title: Chungking Express
Productgroup: DVD
Chungking Express - movie DVD cover picture
A beautiful and poignant story.


CKE is a beautiful tear-jerker which I can't get out of my thoughts. The film is a diamond, with very fine acting by all, but Faye Wong's performance was nothing less than stellar! I understand that CKE was her acting debut and that she won an award for best actress for her work in that unforgetable film. She more than deserved it! My only problem is to find a remedy for the crush I've developed for her. She is just too adorable! I challenge any self-respecting male to see this movie without losing his heart to this excruciatingly seductive coquette!

Studio: Miramax
Director: Kar Wai Wong
Actors:
Brigitte Lin
Tony Leung Chiu Wai
Faye Wong
Takeshi Kaneshiro




DVD title: Fletch
Productgroup: DVD
Fletch - movie DVD cover picture
Great adaption of a novel that I thought couldn't be adapted


Much as "L.A. Law" seduced thousands of college students into law school with the promise of riches, the novel "Fletch" seduced me into journalism school with the promise of adventure and mystery. Sadly, I discovered that much of journalism is nothing like the novel.
That said, Gregory McDonald's "Fletch" remains one of my all time favorite books. When the novel was adapted into a movie, I was skeptical. The novel succeeds because Fletch is much smarter than everyone else, and it moves along based on sharp witty dialogue. How was Chevy Chase going to play Fletch? (Quite frankly, I had always envisioned Fletch as someone like Dirk Benedict -- aka "Faceman" on "The A-Team," or perhaps you remember him as "Starbuck" on "Battlestar Galactica.")
The producers of this movie wisely recognized that they couldn't adapt Chevy Chase into the novel's Fletch, so instead, they took what they could from the novel and adapted it to Chase's strengths. The result is wildly successful. Chase's deadpan delivery and physical klutziness makes the movie fun and funny, while the novel's detailed plot keeps the viewer guessing. This is one of the few times where I've liked both the book and the movie equally.
Now, on to the technical aspects of the DVD. The picture quality is fine, as with DVDs, but the sound, particularly the end credit music sequence, is a bit flat and monostereo at times. Since I noticed this same problem with the laserdisc version, I don't think it's a DVD defect, but rather a problem with the original source, which is too bad.
In summary, I highly recommend this movie; when you're done, you might search for a copy of the novel for a much different presentation of the plot.

Studio: Universal Studios
Director: Michael Ritchie
Actors:
Chevy Chase
Joe Don Baker




DVD title: Family Guy, Vol. 1 (Seasons 1 & 2)
Productgroup: DVD
Family Guy, Vol. 1 (Seasons 1 & 2) - movie DVD cover picture
Insanely funny!


Often one will hear the phrase tossed about that a show was "too edgy" for TV. Usually, this is just apologia for a poorly conceived product, but in the case of "Family Guy" it is absolutely true. This is a show that was every bit as radical as "South Park" but in a much more sophisticated, droll manner. The odd thing is that at the same time it's skewering every sacred cow imaginable (more on that latter) with brilliantly satirical writing, it was also producing some of the most hysterical physical (for lack of a better phrase for a cartoon) comedy I have ever seen on any show.

Much like "The Simpsons", "Family Guy" revolves around one family, in this case the Griffins. That's pretty much where the similarities end though. Whereas the Simpsons interact with a huge cast of characters, and will frequently tackle an overarching theme, "Family Guy" involves a cast that is largely replaced from episode to episode (other than a few neighbors) and manages to turn utterly inane pop-culture references and mundane household events into major plot points. A particularly good example of this would be when Peter (the father) has his choice for the town parade theme selected; the fact that his theme revolves around an obscure reference to the `80's TV show "Who's the Boss?" barely even registers as odd within the context of the show.

Also, whereas "The Simpsons" operate within the context of a `world' that is relatively similar to our own, the Griffins have a talking, booze-swilling dog and a psychotic, super-genius baby bent on killing his mother. Furthermore, there are constant flashbacks, pop-culture references and super-natural visitors (Death appears in several episodes).

All those details aside, what makes this show so brilliant is that it's willing to tackle any subject. Bathroom humor? Done. Abortion? Done. Politics, the handicapped and sex? Done, done and done. There is absolutely nothing "Family Guy" won't tackle, and it does so in such a pragmatic way that one can't help but laugh. I suppose if you're really sensitive, this isn't a series for you, but since everyone and everything is a target, it's hard to get too upset (especially since you'll be too busy laughing yourself sick).

In the end, "Family Guy" is the perfect blend of satire, physical comedy, pop-culture send-ups and excellent animation. It is a genuinely raw show that on more than one occasion left me thinking, "Can they say that?" and that's probably why it's not on the air anymore. But it's also hysterically funny, and well packaged on the DVD's in this set. While the extra's are nothing to get worked up about, the episodes alone are more than funny enough to justify the purchase.

Enjoy!

Jake Mohlman

Studio: Fox Home Entertainme
Actors:
Seth Macfarlane



DVD title: Dancer, Texas Pop. 81
Productgroup: DVD
Dancer, Texas Pop. 81 - movie DVD cover picture
good depiction of small town advantages and angst


The movie depicts the compassion and pressures inherent in a small community with unparrelled acuity. A place where all classes are forced into contact with each other for the general betterment of all. "Dancer" also highlights the rich and intricate personal and social workings of small town life. The movie beats what the big studios have offered in the last 2 or 3 years.

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: Tim McCanlies
Actors:
Breckin Meyer
Peter Facinelli
Eddie Mills (II)
Ethan Embry




DVD title: French & Saunders Collection 1
Productgroup: DVD
French & Saunders Collection 1 - movie DVD cover picture
Brit Com Fanatic


French and Saunders are very funny, and for reasons I don't understand have not been imported sufficiently. Perhaps it's because Americans don't want women to be funny, or worse Americans think it is somehow unseemly for women to be funny. These women are funny and put all comers to shame. Dan Ackroid once said the "Women are not funny."--with the sort of end to the argument tone that intimadated all who might dissent. Dear Dan Ackroid these women put you to shame, you're funny but not consistent; they are consistent, in a way you should honor. I'll make this offer--I'll be happy to have Amazon send you all their work on my dime--perhaps then you can reconsider your position. If you still think women aren't funny, I'll eat the cost, if you have a revelation and experience appropriate shame regarding your stance, you can reimburse me. My proviso is this, don't let your testosterone get in the way of your professional judgement, as it has in the past.

Studio: BBC Video



DVD title: Black Scorpion - The TV Series
Productgroup: DVD
Black Scorpion - The TV Series - movie DVD cover picture
a must for fans


This was a really fun series and it's quite an impressive DVD set. One of the nicest looking DVD sets I own as a matter of fact. I loved this show and every episode of the series is here on DVD to enjoy over and over. A great buy for Scorpion fans.


Studio: New Concorde Home En



DVD title: Jewel Hunter Lime Bem
Productgroup: DVD
Jewel Hunter Lime Bem - movie DVD cover picture
Adorable!


Why was this the only DVD made?? It's soo cute, but definitly not for little kids. Surpassed my expectations. REALLY disappointed when it ends with no conclusion and really mad when you find out no more episodes were made! Still enjoyable enough to buy, definitly worth it.

Studio: Media Blasters
Actors:
Jewel Bem Hunter Lime



DVD title: To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar
Productgroup: DVD
To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar - movie DVD cover picture
Supercallafragalisticexpialadoseous!


Wesley Snipes really makes this movie what it is, and what is it you say? Funnier than hell! You just don't get to see action stars all done up like drag queens every day of the week, you know! With that in mind, pick this up 'cause it's more than a riot, it's a RARE riot.

Studio: Universal Studios Ho
Director: Beeban Kidron
Actors:
Wesley Snipes
Patrick Swayze
John Leguizamo




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