Film DVD related reviews


DVD title: Gallipoli
Productgroup: DVD
Gallipoli - movie DVD cover picture
Postscript: Too real to be invented


And if you think the climax of the movie, the charge by the Australian Light Horse at The Nek, is too ludicrous, too horrible, too absurd to be true, too insane to have ever been allowed to take place, well.... it happened, and it happened just as it is portrayed in the film. Such is the madness of war.

Studio: Paramount Studio
Director: Peter Weir
Actors:
Mark Lee
Mel Gibson




DVD title: La Dolce Vita (2-Disc Collector's Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
La Dolce Vita (2-Disc Collector's Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
Fellini's Best


What a great movie...It needs to be watched more than once for full understanding...Crikey, get this movie on DVD...I can't say too much but it looks like too little. Watch it if you have an open mind.

Studio: Koch Lorber
Director: Federico Fellini
Actors:
Marcello Mastroianni
Anita Ekberg




DVD title: Top Gun
Productgroup: DVD
Top Gun - movie DVD cover picture
My Favorite All-Time Movie


And I'm a chic. For those of you who haven't seen this movie, it is THE BEST. Anytime my mom and I are feeling down we just curl up on our couches and watch this movie. Because of this movie, besides the Eagles' "Witchy Woman"...Otis Reddings' "Sitting on the Dock of the Bay" is one of my all-time favorite songs. Something about that scene with that music and them talking at her beach house, him about his father, I don't know...it just feels right to me. Not to mention that it has prob. the best...scene of all time...all silhouettes and just emotion. And what girl couldn't love the chestbaring volleyball scene? The chics in this movie are great too, even if they aren't the main focus. All around, if I could only buy one movie to have for all time, it would be this one. Show me the way home, honey!

Studio: Paramount Studio
Director: Tony Scott
Actors:
Tom Cruise
Kelly McGillis
Val Kilmer
Anthony Edwards




DVD title: The Wiggles - Wiggle Time
Productgroup: DVD
The Wiggles - Wiggle Time - movie DVD cover picture
My toddler loves to Wiggle.


The Wiggles are a bunch of Australian musicians who didn't make it as pop stars, so decided to make a video for kids. They're a huge hit Down Under and you'll soon see why. The music is so much better than the usual Barney-type stuff. And unlike most videos, your children won't sit there like lumps on a log - they'll get up and dance. When Wiggles are on the tube, there is peace in our household. My 2 year old and 4 year old both love to wiggle!

Studio: Hit Entertainment, P



DVD title: Akira (Limited Special Edition Tin)
Productgroup: DVD
Akira (Limited Special Edition Tin) - movie DVD cover picture
The best Anime movie ever.. or is it.....JK


Like certain operas, Akira has a great overture and grand finale but much in between is just wasted energy. It's like watching kids play with bombs. It's impressive but forget about having a purpose or hitting suitable targets. The message seems to be human technology always runs ahead of human wisdom, that whatever knowledge culled from science too often and quickly ends up in the hands of powerhungry loons. Well, the movie demonstrates much the same thing. Those who make movies are't necessarily ones who should be making movies.

Studio: Pioneer Video
Director: Katsuhiro Ôtomo
Actors:
Mitsuo Iwata
Nozomu Sasaki
Mami Koyama




DVD title: Truth or Consequences, N.M.
Productgroup: DVD
Truth or Consequences, N.M. - movie DVD cover picture
Incredible Characters


It takes a lot of skill to direct and star in a major hollywood flick, and Sutherland proves that hard work does pay off. This crime drama keeps you on edge, probabulary one of the first time you actually hope the super cute bad guys don't die. I love kiefer sutherland, and thats why I intentionally rented the movie. But once I saw it a few times--I fell in love! Definetanly the Kiefer movie you want to rent.

Studio: Columbia/Tristar Studios
Director: Kiefer Sutherland
Actors:
Kiefer Sutherland
Kim Dickens




DVD title: The Lord of the Rings - The Two Towers (Widescreen Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
The Lord of the Rings - The Two Towers (Widescreen Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
Isengard...and Mordor


Wow, I got mine and I still can't get enough of it. I am inclined to agree with some reviwers: I prefer the films to the books, just because the books are written in such an obscure manner. Take the "cheesy" lines with humor and no one better disrespect Christopher Lee.

Studio: New Line Home Entertainment
Director: Peter Jackson
Actors:
Elijah Wood
Ian McKellen
Viggo Mortensen




DVD title: Clownhouse
Productgroup: DVD
Clownhouse - movie DVD cover picture
Best clown Movie Ever..


I guess i'm a horror freak and this is by far the best movie about clowns i've ever seen. I watched this movie when i was younger so much that i wore the tape out. If you like horror movies you have to get this one.

Studio: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Director: Victor Salva



DVD title: Sports Night - The Complete Series Boxed Set
Productgroup: DVD
Sports Night - The Complete Series Boxed Set - movie DVD cover picture
The best show ever!


"Sports Night" is easily the finest television show ever made. Even better than "The West Wing." If you read this review, ignore the other ones that say "if you like sports..." I don't happen to be into sports and I still adore this show. Sports are merely a MacGuffin for the good stuff.
I have often said that Aaron Sorkin is like Shakespeare: even if you didn't understand what they just said, it's EXTREMELY fun to listen to. Money spent on this show will not be wasted.

Studio: Buena Vista Home Entertainment
Actors:
Peter Krause



DVD title: Frida
Productgroup: DVD
Frida - movie DVD cover picture
Visually interesting, hagiagraphy, inaccurate,


The film Frida and the accompanying background material here is a visual entertainment that seems to be oriented with the current fascination with her art as an expression of inwardly turned, self-referential, and pyscholoigcal concerns that seem to pass as social concern these days. The acting, direction, and production design here are all masterful. Yet, there seems to be a simplification to enable glorification. Frida emerges as a saint, a heroine, but not a real person.
People I knew who knew her 1938-1942 and the biographies that were written about her before she began to be taken up by the New York hipsters, tended to talk about how the pain and difficulty of her life were expressed in a personality that was not exactly the sweet, sunny, firm clear, fair and always just character portrayed in the movie. The condition created by the Frida Fad of the past 10 years has made her into such a non-person, such a glorified abstraction, that otherwise serious grownups who have no real knowledge other than she is now popular and "collectable" wince when you tell them people world wide for their warmth, judgement, and trust who saw her every day for years could say that Frida was not always fun to be around. No less than the Diego depicted in her film, Kahlo did not really understand the consequences her own personal picadillos and adventures could have on people who had more conventional views of life and love, and who needed stability in life.
The movie and the accompanying DVD background material were either false or ignorant about why Trotsky moved out of the Blue House. He did not move out because of Natalia Sedova's anger over the affair. [ The affair really break Natalia's heart and almost caused a split among the Trotskys, although that split was healed. Trotsky is almost rapsodic in his diary when he realizes his love for Natalya is there emotionally and physically and they are still together.] Trotsky and the Riveras split due to a deep and public political disagreement over elections in Mexico. Diego was making public statements that gave people the impression that Trotsky was backing a right-wing candidate for President of Mexico that Trotsky stridently opposed. Moroever, Diego's actions gave the false impression that Trotsky was publically intervening in Mexican politics, something Trotsky resolutely refused to do. Both Trotsky and the Mexican section of the Fourth International, the world organization Trotsky founded, had to disassociate themselves from Deigo at this point.
This movie uses Kahlo's association with Trotsky to give a gloss to her and Rivera. Unlike the Mexican movie made about her entitled Freida (this is the name Kahlo was born with, not Frida), this film does not tell the view that in the late 1940s, Rivera and Kahlo became ultra-Stalinists. They revived their friendship with David Alfred Siqueros who had attempted to murder Trotsky. Frida Kahlo issued public statements denouncing herself for having had sex with Trotsky and pledged her eternal devotion to Stalin. Of course, this aspect of her life doesn't fit into the kind of marketable hagiagraphy that has less concern with the reality of a person and of politics than it does with a marketable image. It is true you do see a picture of Stalin on a canvas toward the end, but it is not clear to anyone who isn't already familiar with the story.
I also was disappointed in the actor they had playing Diego. He played his part extremely well, but he was just not the right person for anyone to think to be Diego. The person was an English actor, apparently of Italian or Spanish origin.
Diego was mostly if not entirely Indian, whereas Frida was actually half German Jewish. Diego actually did the rough outlines and instructions of his murals and then got very indigenous Indians to paint in the colors with their rough brush strokes.
This attempt to identify with the non-European art and culture and political identity of Mexico was a big part of what Diego and Frida were about, but it gets no play or reference in the movie. Frida adopted the regional dress of one of the most indigenous areas of Mexico,rather than follow the Europe-centered fashions of Mexico's intelligensia. Mexico is a nation where the the vast majority, the scores of millions of people of mixed and all Indian blood have traditionally struggled against an elite which emphasizes its "Spanish" ancestry. Diego's proclamation of his Indianness and his sucess in Mexico as a mostly Indian cultural figure, and Frida's decision to identify with this was central to their lives and impact on their times.
To me what is rather unfortunate is that while Kahlo's art was interesting and beautiful, and great in some ways, Diego is simply lost in all of this. He was one of the great artists of the 20th Century, far more significant than Kahlo in his impact on Mexican, Latin American, and world culture. Moreover, particularly for Mexicans and other Latin Americans, the cultural ideas about reclaiming the Indian identity and linking with the popular masses and the pre-Columbian cultures that he advanced were very important, not just for artists, but in political and literary circles as well. Diego played an important role fighting with his friend Andre Breton in charting an independent and radical artistic and intellectual response to Stalinist theory of "socialist realist" art. Pathfinder Press has just come out with a brand new updated and better noted and glosseried edition of Breton's What is Surrealism which contains the declaration on Art and Artists in the 20th Century that Deigo, Trotsky, and Breton wrote together.
Of course, all of Deigo's work dealt with the political struggle of Mexico and the world's working people to fight against imperialism and capitalism. This isn't very marketable among the upper middle class fadists at whom this film seems to aimed. They prefer a Frida and a Diego whose personal concerns about romance, sex, and personal fame are at the center of their lives, not two fighters for a socialist world!

Studio: Miramax Home Entertainment
Director: Julie Taymor
Actors:
Salma Hayek
Alfred Molina




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