Film DVD related reviews

DVD title: Dragon Ball Z - The History of Trunks
Productgroup: DVD
Dragon Ball Z - The History of Trunks - movie DVD cover picture
More blood, more battles, and more surprises !

Once again I stopped by at one of my favorite stores to find "Dragonball Z-The History of Trunks", and I thought my luck ran out when I didn't find any, until finally I went to the last store and I saw a DVD version of the movie. I didn't buy the VHS version, instead I bought the DVD version. It's way better ! And so is this movie. Although I did love the action in "Dragonball Z-Bardock, The Father of Goku", The History of Trunks is way better and more twisted. This movie is about a dark and twisted future with no hope of survival for humanity. Krillin, Yamcha, Chiaotzu, Tien, and Piccolo lost their lives against two killer Androids. Goku is dead in result of a heart virus. Only two fighters remain, a 13 year old boy named Trunks, and Gohan, the only son of Goku. These two young fighters are determined to put an end to these vicious monsters once and for all. But they didn't have enough power. Even Gohan, the only boy who surpasses his father's powers, was killed in battle with the Androids. Now it's up to Trunks to save the world by doing one trough time ! His mission, to give Goku then antitdote, warn others about the Androids, and change the course of time ! Sounds intresting, huh ? Well it is ! This is one of the best DBZ movies that surpasses the action of the three early DBZ movies. To all DBZ fans, go get it ! It's definently worth it !

Studio: Goldhil Home Media 2
Director: Minoru Okazaki

DVD title: The Matrix
Productgroup: DVD
The Matrix - movie DVD cover picture
Wow, this is one neat movie

Based on the previews, I had no idea what the movie was about exactly. It was better than I imagined and I am a sci-fi buff.
In a nutshell, without ruining it for those who haven't seen it.
A computer programmer who haunts the net, feels that his reality isn't quite what it seems to be. Somehow, a strange woman becomes aware of his quest for answers. She puts him in contact with a mysterious man, who hints at an alternate reality and nothing he has every dreamed of.
However, his choice at revealing that alternate reality has no ability to return to the reality he knows. He must make a choice. In the meantime, a group of mysterious men, accost him at work and question what he knows of the mysterious man and women. The inquistion gets pretty scary.
Needless to say Keanu Reeves character, opts to find out what this alternative reality is. Then it gets really cool.
Maybe I missed this in many of the sci-fi movies I've seen, but this is an angle about reality that I never imagined. It must've taken this generation of writers to imagine what virtual reality could do to come up with that. It really stretches the imagination. Puts a new twist on the energizer bunny.
I thought the special effects were great. Mind you a bit on the violent side, but that does sell with this generation. I appreciate the fact that it was not gory, just mostly destructive.
Keanu Reeves was perfect for this role. He had the look and style to pull it off. It is nice when a person that was a young star matures into his roles and changes with his own seasons.
I know some of the guys were dissappointed that there was a love story plopped in the middle of it, but I think that's what makes it even more interesting.
You can't beat the big screen for this type of action flick. However, I bought the tape just to watch it every now and then for it's fabulous special effects. It is easy to see new things in it each time.
It it over the top? You betcha, but quite frankly, if it wasn't, it wouldn't be science fiction. Does it have some holes in it's theories? yup. But, let's face it, the Einstein's out there that tear it apart aren't writing anything better or as interesting. Can you imagine describing to Aristotle, how a microwave works?

Studio: Warner Studios
Keanu Reeves
Laurence Fishburne
Carrie-Anne Moss

DVD title: Nancy Wilson at Carnegie Hall
Productgroup: DVD
Nancy Wilson at Carnegie Hall - movie DVD cover picture
"technically and artistically flawless!"

Nancy Wilson makes every song uniquely her own. This 1987 JVC Jazz Festival concert, taped at New York's famed Carnegie Hall, showcases her distinctive amalgam of sensitive phrasing, secure intonation, and strong Jazz feeling. Featured are duets with Carl Anderson. JazzTimes reported this is a flawless video, both technically and artistically.
#1317 (52 min, Hi-Fi Stereo)

Studio: View Video
Nancy Wilson

DVD title: Rebecca
Productgroup: DVD
Rebecca - movie DVD cover picture
A Spellbinding Masterpiece

'Last night,I dreamt I went to Manderly again....'
So begins the atmospheric and moody story of REBECCA,and Mrs DeWinter's odyssey of epic proportions. Joan Fontaine plays the role of the child bride who wins the hand of the widowed Mr DeWinter (Laurence Olivier) a man plagued by the shrill ghosts of his unhappy past. She finds,in his ancestral home of Manderly,that she is continually at odds with the housekeeper,the foreboding Mrs Danvers (Judith Anderson) and Maxim's sister Beatrice (Gladys Cooper). Everything seems to lead back to the first wife of Maxim,Rebecca,who died under mysterious circumstances.
A truly riveting piece of cinema.

Studio: Anchor Bay Entertainment
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Laurence Olivier
Joan Fontaine

DVD title: My Girl
Productgroup: DVD
My Girl - movie DVD cover picture
you'll laugh you'll cry you'll love it

how old is this movie? it is very good. i can barely watch it without shedding a tear. i always laugh. an great movie and an classic.

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: Howard Zieff
Dan Aykroyd
Jamie Lee Curtis
Macaulay Culkin
Anna Chlumsky

DVD title: A League of Their Own
Productgroup: DVD
A League of Their Own - movie DVD cover picture
Wonderful movie, a must see for anyone

"A League of Their Own" (1992), directed by Penny Marshall, takes place during the World War II era. Since a lot of male baseball players were being drafted to the armed forces, an All American Girls Baseball League was formed to try to keep the prosperity of baseball alive in America. The two main characters Dottie Hinson (Geena Davis) and Kit Keller (Lori Petty) join up with a whole turnout of women including the flirtatious Mae Mordabito (Madonna) and the strong, bold Doris Murphy (Rosie O'Donnell), and experience life as a female athlete during the 1940's. Jimmy Dugan (Tom Hanks) is one of the male coaches hired to coach one of the all woman teams, and is one of the many that show transformation throughout the season.This movie is full of stereotypical ideas of what a female should be, but that is not to say that the movie promotes these ideas. Some examples could be shown through the uniforms that the women are forced to wear, which consists of a skirt! As stated in the movie, the women are to act "ladylike" and are sent to a beauty school, where they are taught "ladylike" manners and are given makeovers. We see in Dottie Hinson, whose husband Bob Hinson (Bill Pullman) is away at war, the outlook of women back then as she almost quits the league by the final game because Bob returns from the war and Dottie's aspirations are to start a family and be a housewife. Even in Jimmy Dugan, the coach barely cares at first about the team and states "girls can't play baseball", and how he doesn't have a team of ballplayers, but a "team of girls". We see a transformation however in him that shows his true love of the game, looking past what gender roles were considered back then. Although there are many more, one last example discussed here is Marla (Megan Cavanagh), who is a better hitter than most men, yet is almost not allowed in the league because she is considered "ugly". This movie was excellent. It shows how hard it was for women to be taken seriously outside of "housewife" labels that were bestowed upon them, yet it adds great humor throughout to make it a very entertaining, yet educational film!

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: Penny Marshall
Tom Hanks
Geena Davis
Lori Petty

DVD title: Ma Vie En Rose
Productgroup: DVD
Ma Vie En Rose - movie DVD cover picture
Adverse sexuality in society (Ma Vie en Rose)

Ma Vie en Rose is a provocative film about a young boy that urns to be a girl and the struggle that he and his family go through in order for him to find himself.
The young boy, Ludovic, feels so strong that he is a girl that he goes to extreme lengths to prove his sincerity. He wears dresses, make up, and watches a show that is equivalent to America's Barbie. He prefers to play with dolls than army men and dances over playing sports. Though Ludovic is anatomically male, everything he does is expressed as female. He even tries to kiss another boy. This action does not make him gay. Because he believes so sincerely that he is a girl, all of his actions seem normal to him.
The neighbors have a different idea of what Ludovic is. They call him "bent" and ban him from their homes and families. At first, Ludovic's parents are accepting and allow his behavior, but as it intensifies, they begin to worry and send Ludovic to a psychologist, who can offer little help.
Ludovic then goes to stay with his grandmother, the only person that accepts him for him. His parents are forced to move to another town after Ludovic's father loses his job, most likely because of Ludovic's behavior. After this move, his parents start to try and accept Luovic, but with little results and Ludovic starts to try and act more like a boy. Things seem to be going well, until a neighborhood girl has a costume party and forces Ludovic to switch costumes with her. Ludovic's mother flips out and tries to hurt him. When she is pulled off of him, she wanders the streets until she sees a 'Barbie' billboard. The billboard helps to show her what Ludovic is really like, a sweet, confusioned little boy looking for guidance, and she holds him for the first time since the problems began.
These reactions to adversity, in terms of sexuality, are faced regularly by a wide range of people. The film tries to portray them to the extreme, and does it well, making this movie on the edge of new generation of film.

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: Alain Berliner
Michèle Laroque
Jean-Philippe Écoffey
Hélène Vincent
Georges Du Fresne

DVD title: As Good As It Gets
Productgroup: DVD
As Good As It Gets - movie DVD cover picture

I've seen this movie about six times in the last six weeks. We need other people! If we get cut off for some reason, we become cruel and mean. The movie starts with Melvin Udall (Jack Nicolson) throwing a cute little dog down a trash shute. He has OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder). There are many theories running through this film. The theory that if we are cut off from people and love nobody, we become incredibly cruel. The theory that we may need to open up to some obnoxious people
because we really care for them. The theory that we have to accept ourselves no matter what other people say. Even our parents. This triad comes smashing together in a suprising way. Simon, Melvin, and Carol. Bouncing off each other like crazy without knowing that they are in a growth process. This film is a true classic. But you may have to watch it a second time to really see the deep pain that each of the three characters is experiencing. Beautifully acted. Beautifully directed. Academy awards to Jack Nicolson and Helen Hunt.

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: James L. Brooks
Jack Nicholson
Helen Hunt
Greg Kinnear

DVD title: This Is Spinal Tap - Criterion Collection
Productgroup: DVD
This Is Spinal Tap - Criterion Collection - movie DVD cover picture
Don't miss the commentary tracks

This classic comedy was outdone by the commentary tracks available on the DVD. The commentary by Rob Reiner and the actors in the band gives great insight into how the film was made. The commentary by the actors AS THE BAND rivals the comedy of the movie itself! Why is Criterion not producing this anymore? I was a fool not to buy it while it was still available!

Studio: Home Vision Entertainment
Director: Rob Reiner
Rob Reiner
Michael McKean
Christopher Guest

DVD title: Miles Davis - Live in Munich
Productgroup: DVD
Miles Davis - Live in Munich - movie DVD cover picture
Five stars for the group, four stars for Miles? playing

If you're in the mood to hear some excellent Miles Davis and don't have any particular biases (e.g., acoustic vs. electric), LIVE IN MUNICH (recorded July 1988) is the best video document yet of his final decade, much better in all respects than MILES IN PARIS (recorded a year later with some of the same personnel). Portions of this DVD were previously issued in Japan, but the program has been greatly expanded here, to the point where you have a nearly-complete, 132 minute-long concert with a sharp picture and fine 5.1 or 24-bit 2.0 sound (I favor the latter).
This is one of Miles' most-inspired 1980s-era ensembles, with everyone playing as a team and contributing fine solos. The underrated percussionist Marilyn Mazur is outstanding throughout, the same with acclaimed reedman Kenny Garrett. Lead bassist Foley shows a lot of range (from a whisper on DON'T STOP ME NOW to a scream on HEAVY METAL). Keyboardists Robert Irving III and Adam Holzman, bassist Benjamin Rietveld and drummer Ricky Wellman also excel whether they are soloing or not. Without exception, each bandmember has something distinctive to offer in Davis' group.
The music covers a lot of ground, from some fairly cutting-edge funk to poignant ballads that allow Miles in particular an opportunity to recast his classic muted-trumpet style in a modern musical context. Davis does not solo on every track...a number of the compositions are built as features for his sidepersons (e.g., HEAVY METAL PRELUDE for Mazur). With over two hours of material, you really get a full picture of how much stylistic ground Davis one concert, let alone his entire career. After hearing the expanded/altered live versions here of particular album tracks, you can appreciate that Miles saw his studio projects as blueprints for what would later greatly evolve on his concert tours.
The DVD extras range from superfluous (the timeline) to informative (Holzman's liner notes), and there are a few examples of Davis' artwork. There is a bonus second DVD with a 30 minute Miles Davis interview that will please collectors, albeit the context of some of his comments might confuse newcomers. Overall, LIVE IN MUNICH is highly recommended if you are open to this period of Miles' career!

Studio: Geneon Entertainment
János Darvas
Miles Davis

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