Film DVD related reviews

DVD title: Monstruos, Inc. (Monsters, Inc. - Spanish Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
Monstruos, Inc. (Monsters, Inc. - Spanish Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
Perhaps the Cutest Movie You?ll See All Year...

Like Toy Story, A Bug's Life, Antz and Shrek before it, Monsters Inc. is another powerhouse kids movie (from our good friends at Pixar) with all those cool animatronic characters we've come to marvel at. Full of comedy (lots of it slap-stick) and lovable (but not all that scary) characters, this movie will be loved by kids of all ages and just about anyone who sees it.
The basic plot follows the adventures of Sully (the huge bear like creature) and Mike Wazowski (you'll be hooked by the end...)(the one-eyed green thing) who work for Monsters Inc. In Monstropolis, the city is powered by the screams of young children who the monsters scare at night via a HUGE network of children's closet doors that they crawl through. The odd thing is that the Monsters are even MORE scared of the children, and that is where our story takes off as little baby "Boo" ventures into the world of Monstropolis. What follows is a hilarious (and cute) story of scares, laughs and corporate intrigue as Sully and Mike stumble across a dastardly plot that begins as a simple game of "healthy" competition between Sully and the chameleon Randal.
Movie Highlights:
- Our heroes chasing the villain throughout the world via the network of closet doors (that's TOTALLY ultra-cool).
- The hilarious actions of the "Child Detection Agency" and all their CODES.
Aimed more at the "cute" factor than its earlier predecessors, Monsters Inc. is bound to leave you with a smile on your face (or barf bag depending on your tastes) by the end of the film. Already a commercial success tons of parents are bound to be buying Sully, Mike or Boo dolls for X-mas.
Highly Recommended for kids and parentsRecommended for all others

Studio: Walt Disney Home Video
John Goodman
Billy Crystal

DVD title: The Beatles - Help!
Productgroup: DVD
The Beatles - Help! - movie DVD cover picture
Needs No "Help" at All !

It is a pleasure to watch The Beatle's film "Help." It's easy listening, lighthearted and a nice "snapshot" in time when they were all enjoying being at the top of their game! All the songs featured were big hits and are well woven into the framework of the movie. Nevertheless, to have another opportunity to experience the dry subtle humor of John Lennon is worth the purchase on it's own! But to know that this was one of the first exposures of Indian music for George Harrison, and to witness this milestone that influenced the rest of his musical and spiritual life, is an extremely rare treat indeed. Ringo Starr continues to entertain with his own brand of whimsical laconicism that remains unequaled and Paul McCartney is very warmly enjoyable in his portrayal of a love-struck member of the band with the lovely leading High Priestess. A must see for new and renewed fans alike!

Studio: Repnet
Director: Richard Lester
John Lennon
Paul McCartney
George Harrison
Ringo Starr

DVD title: Killer Klowns from Outer Space
Productgroup: DVD
Killer Klowns from Outer Space - movie DVD cover picture
An interstellar comedic horror spoof

All hell breaks loose when demented extraterrestrials camoflagued as clowns land on Earth in their big top space ship. Soon they terrorize the countryside, killing, eating, and capturing defenseless human beings. Earth's last chance is, of course, a rag-tag bunch of teens! No serious fan of campy sci-fi should be without this film; the soundtrack alone is worth the price of admission, featuring rocked-out electric guitars screaming diminished calliope licks. The creature designs are orginal and suitably freaky (as if clowns weren't freaky enough to begin with!). The whole movie comes off with an always-entertaining sense of style yet never makes the mistake of taking itself too seriously. Killer Klowns... even actually manages to be geniunely scary at times; it is truly a must-own flick for any scifi, horror, and/or comedy fan.

Studio: Mgm/Ua Studios
Director: Stephen Chiodo

DVD title: Kids in the Hall - Brain Candy
Productgroup: DVD
Kids in the Hall - Brain Candy - movie DVD cover picture
One of the greatest comedies of all time

This is an accomplished and brilliant piece of cinema. It is genuinely funny and yet at the same time has the blackest of black hearts. I truly believe this film is up there with Doctor Strangelove as one of the greatest comedies ever crafted for the big screen. The performances are perfect and the characters are brilliant exercises in the minutae of life. The film also has a strong and potent message. I am not sure that another cinema outing for the Kids in the Hall would be as strong despite their brilliant TV show, possibly if only because they have such a lot to live up to. I only wish more people could have seen this film at the cinema but I'm very pleased to see this film coming out on DVD and will buy it the day it is realised.

Studio: Paramount Home Video
Director: Kelly Makin
Dave Foley
Bruce McCulloch

DVD title: The Sandlot
Productgroup: DVD
The Sandlot - movie DVD cover picture
Loved By ALL Ages

This is one of the best movies made. I am the mother of a seven year old boy who watches this movie EVERY day. Great for all ages my father also watches this every weekend with my son. Wonderful story of past times, friendship, and BASEBALL.

Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
Director: David M. Evans
Tom Guiry
Mike Vitar

DVD title: The Children of Heaven
Productgroup: DVD
The Children of Heaven - movie DVD cover picture
work of art

The wonderful Iranian film, "Children of Heaven," and its companion piece, "The White Balloon", remind one of those great Czechoslovakian films of the 1960's ("The Shop on Main Street" and "Loves of a Blonde" etc.) in that they achieve their artistry by providing keenly observed glimpses into the minutiae of everyday life. They also help to humanize a culture often regarded as alien and even incomprehensible to western eyes. Above all, this magnificent film reminds us that real drama comes not in the form of overplotted special effects laden extravaganzas, but from films that examine the universal simplicities of life as we all know it. When it is distilled through the eyes of a poet - this is when art is achieved.
"Children of Heaven" has its roots planted firmly in the neorealist tradition. Its simple story echoes not merely the earlier "The White Balloon" but the original Italian classic, "The Bicycle Thief." In this film, young Ali accidentally loses his sister's recently mended shoes; out of this tale of utmost simplicity, the filmmakers take us on a fascinating tour of life in a typical Iranian village and family. As Ali and his sister scheme to overcome this obstacle, the film touches on any number of universal themes: the close ties of siblings united in their common bond of avoiding often irrational parental anger; well meaning, loving parents overwhelmed with the trials of everyday life who are often compelled to act out in ways that seem cruel to the children who adore them; the petty viciousness with which children often strike out at each other, yet, at the same time, the often unexpectant kindness and empathy with which they also treat one another. The film manages to keep the audience constantly engrossed in its action without once resorting to even a smidgen of incredibility or melodrama. Beautifully directed, with a superb soundtrack filled with heightened naturalistic noises, it is a film of many-splendored wonders, its lyricism caught in a glimpse of soap bubbles floating around a backyard produced by two children abandoned to their moment of incomprehensible youthful joy, its high drama found in a shoe racing down a city sewer with a desperate young girl in tow.
The actors, children and adults alike, underplay their roles in so naturalistic a fashion that one does not even feel they are performing at all; the film, through them, becomes a magical fabric of life that draws the audience deep into its world.
"Children of Heaven" brilliantly demonstrates that works of art often arise from the observation of the most seemingly mundane concerns of daily life and reminds us that this provides far more drama than all the exploding spaceships, car chases and hyperkinetic melodrama that flood the screen in the guise of entertainment. It certainly shows just how phony, empty and bereft of life most American films are. Don't miss "Children of Heaven"! It is a richly rewarding experience.

Studio: Miramax
Director: Majid Majidi

DVD title: The Rugrats Movie
Productgroup: DVD
The Rugrats Movie - movie DVD cover picture


Studio: Paramount Studio
Elizabeth Daily
Christine Cavanaugh

DVD title: Saw (Widescreen Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
Saw (Widescreen Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
Excellent Movie

This is one of the most original ideas of seen in any movie recently. A killer who teaches his victims the value of life through his sick and deadly games. I was intrigued with the ways the "Jigsaw Killer" was killing his victims. The ending surprised me greatly. My only complaint is that there's a lot of dialogue but though all that to see the violent scenes makes it worth your while.

Studio: Lions Gate Home Entertainment
Director: James Wan
Leigh Whannell
Cary Elwes
Danny Glover

DVD title: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Full Screen Edition) (Harry Potter 1)
Productgroup: DVD
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Full Screen Edition) (Harry Potter 1) - movie DVD cover picture
See you in Potions class ...

Despite a few shortcomings, I have to say that this is a good adaptation of an excellent book. If nothing else, watch the scenes with Alan Rickman as Professor Snape; you won't be disappointed.

Studio: Warner Home Video
Director: Chris Columbus
Daniel Radcliffe

DVD title: The Shootist
Productgroup: DVD
The Shootist - movie DVD cover picture
Wayne's Nudge to Ron Howard

I always think of this movie as a last hurrah not only for John Wayne but for Jimmy Stewart too.

The way Wayne tries his best to dissuade young Ron Howard from becoming a gunfighter, it's almost as though there were a subtext to this storyline, I feel that it is John Wayne trying subtly to dissuade Ron Howard away from being an actor and to nudge him gently into a directing career. After all, this is one of Howard's final pictures as an actor and soon afterwards he picked up the directing reins where he's been sitting pretty ever since. Wayne's own debut as a director was THE ALAMO and if you remember it was re-made not too long ago, not by Ron Howard but he was going to do it only the studio wouldn't back him up as to the huge budget the project required--exactly the same battles the Duke had fought way back in 1960. Now, Ron Howard has been very clear about the debt he has owed the Duke, and it all stems from working together on this one Don Siegel project. His recent flop Western film THE MISSING wioth Cate Blanchett is very much a tribute to Wayne's classic 1956 movie THE SEARCHERS. Howard's career has been more expansive than Wayne's, but really it's a case of the apple landing not too far from the tree. This lends their scenes together in THE SHOOTIST that extra edge of poignancy, it's like a glimpse into the heroic past of John Wayne, and into the directing future of Ron Howard. The clips that you see at the beginning of THE SHOOTIST were chosen with care, and provide a brief panoply of the greatness that was John Wayne. Though THE SHOOTIST isn't the best Wayne movie, not by a long shot, it was miles better than most films of the Bicentennial year 1976, and it seems to look better every year that goes by.

It's great to see Ricky Nelson, Christopher George and Johnny Crawford in bit parts on the DVD version, where you can stop the action and say, "Wow, that is who I thought it is!"

Studio: Paramount Home Video
Director: Don Siegel
John Wayne
Lauren Bacall

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