Film DVD related reviews


DVD title: A Morbid Taste for Bones
Productgroup: DVD
A Morbid Taste for Bones - movie DVD cover picture
Saints and Sinners - Beware!


"Have a care with visionaries, they are not always bidable," Brother Cadfael warns when young Columbarnus casts a spell as he continues to be seized with sightings of St. Winifred. She lies neglected in her native Gwytherin, Wales. Placing her in a splendid reliquary would certainly bring honor to the virgin martyr, to say nothing of the renown which would come to the Abbey of St. Peter and St. Paul in Shrewsbury were Winifred housed there for all to worship.
Cadfael reluctantly does as he is told by Abbot Radulfus and leads some of his brethren to rescue Winifred. The crusader turned herbalist monk/part-time detective, after all, is Welsh and knows the land and people. He needs every bit of that knowledge when the saint's bones are fought for by Lord Rhysart and the good people of Gwytherin. "St. Winifred is a country girl, she lies in country soil -- Welsh soil," Rhysart declares. He vows to protect the saint and her burial place to the death. The next morning he is found murdered.
Cadfael must solve the mystery else he and his Benedictine brothers die themselves. Their deaths, under the circumstances, would not be martyrdom. After separating facts from lies, Cadfael sees to it that St. Winifred and Columbarnus both rest peacefully.
In this episode Sir Derek Jacobi as the down-to-earth Cadfael is both subtle and powerful. Terrence Hardiman (Radulfus) manages to maintain his serene command despite the alarmists around him. Michael Culver (Prior Robert) and Julian Firth (Brother Jerome) continue their fervid roles. Mark Charnock (Brother Oswin) is enthusastically na?ve.
Nick Patrick (Columbarnus) makes the most of his monastic part. John Halliam (Rhysart), Ellis Jones (Father Ianto), and Philip Rowlands (Bened) are outstanding, turning in passionate performances. The talent of Anna Friel (Sinoed) matches her beauty. Stephen Moyer (Godwin) turns in a fine supporting presentation, as does Steffan Trefor (Peredur).
Those fascinated by Medieval ceremonies and pagan customs will enjoy "A Morbid Taste for Bones." The cinematography of lush pastorale scenes and quaint village life is superb. Casting of townsfolk is masterful; each face is a portrait of Welsh peasantry. Colin Towns, who composed the music for the Cadfael series, has done an extraordinary job in this episode. Without the mellifluous music and colorful chanting, it would have been less enthralling.
Director Rick Stroud captured the essence of 12th Century Medieval life and mysteriousness. Christopher Russell turned Ellis Peters' novel into a fascinating screenplay. Stephen Smallwood produced a classic Cadfael.

Studio: Acorn Media
Actors:
Brother Cadfael
Derek Jacobi




DVD title: The Triplets of Belleville
Productgroup: DVD
The Triplets of Belleville - movie DVD cover picture
Pure delight!


Madame Souza is a (Portuguese) sweet grandma who worries about her orphaned grandson's great sadness. Nothing interests Champion, at all; it's touching how Madame Souza cares about him and constantly watches him in order to find out what would possible bring the boy some happiness - watch TV, a piano, a puppy dog. So, when she discovers that Champion's biggest interest in life are bikes, she immediately gives him a tricycle - and the little one is pure joy when he sees it in front of him.

Champion grows up to be a professional biker (coached by his beloved - and demanding - grandma) who takes part of the famous cycle race Tour de France. However, something wicked comes to his way when he, in the middle of the race, is kidnapped by sinister men in black and taken to Belleville - making Madame Souza and her faithful dog Bruno start a long journey to rescue him. In Belleville, they meet the Triplets of the title, three very eccentric old ladies who back in the day were famous singers.

A wonderful, touching and interesting story, with charismatic characters and beautiful drawing. Almost without dialogue (it isn't really necessary), we see the most unusual instruments being used for massaging (a lawnmower, a vacuum cleaner and a whisk) and playing music (a coffeepot, a refrigerator, a newspaper and, again, a vacuum cleaner); we meet the Triplets living in an old, crappy building and having for dinner frogs, frogs and more frogs; and, finally, we watch four old women, a very fat dog and two skinny guys fighting the Mafia - all with our eyes glued to the screen.

For me, one more thing makes "The Triplets of Belleville" even more appealing - the dog Bruno. He just *is* my deceased Basset Hound Hommer... All Bruno's little quirks are very real - he isn't a dog's cartoon, who talks, thinks and bosses the humans around; he is just a sweet chubby dog, and that's what I love in him!

Studio: Columbia Tristar Hom
Director: Sylvain Chomet
Actors:
Jean-Claude Donda
Monica Viegas
Michèle Caucheteux
Michel Robin




DVD title: Office Space (Full Screen Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
Office Space (Full Screen Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
This is my life


This was seriously one of the best movies I have ever seen. I rented it and watched it 4 times, then skipped to some of the really funny parts and watched them a few more times. It almost gets funnier every time you watch it. A lot of the subtle humor goes unnoticed by some people, but I thought it was all great. Even the parts that aren't hysterically funny are still entertaining. Great movie, must buy!

Studio: Twentieth Century Fox Home Video
Director: Mike Judge
Actors:
Ron Livingston
Jennifer Aniston




DVD title: The Abyss (Special Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
The Abyss (Special Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
Excellent special effects work highlighting effective acting


This movie was very well done. The special effects work is virtually flawless, and the acting and writing fit very well. The storyline doesn't vary far from the book. END

Studio: Twentieth Century Fox Home Video
Director: James Cameron
Actors:
Ed Harris
Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio




DVD title: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
Productgroup: DVD
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon - movie DVD cover picture
CTHD and Wuxia


GREAT MOVIE. A MUST HAVE FOR ALL KUNGFU MOVIE COLLECTORS. IF YOU WATCHED IT IN THE THEATER,IT'S EVEN BETTER IN ENGLISH AT HOME ON 5.1 DOLBY DIGITAL. NO NEED TO MESS WITH SUBTITLES.

Studio: Columbia Tri-Star
Director: Ang Lee
Actors:
Yun-Fat Chow
Michelle Yeoh
Ziyi Zhang




DVD title: The Ugly Dachshund
Productgroup: DVD
The Ugly Dachshund - movie DVD cover picture
The Ugly Dachshund, Great For The Whole Family


This is one of my favorite movies! Dean Jones plays an artist married to Suzanne Pleshette who has a purebred dachshund about to have puppies. As a favor to their vet, Dean sneaks in a Great Dane pup with the dachshund pups and that's when all the fun begins! I had this movie on video and I've shared it with children and adults...everyone laughs at it. It's a sweet comedy that everyone can enjoy.

Studio: Walt Disney Home Video
Director: Norman Tokar
Actors:
Dean Jones
Suzanne Pleshette




DVD title: The Birds (Collector's Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
The Birds (Collector's Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
A classic Hitchcock thriller


This memorable tale of man versus bird stars Tippi Hedren as Melanie, a snooty San Francisco socialite who meets a dapper lawyer/weekend farmer (Rod Taylor). He disapproves of her jetsetter lifestyle; she dislikes him, too...or maybe not. She drives up the coast to his hometown to surprise him and is inexplicably attacked by seagulls. Soon, the whole town is besieged by murderous birds. Several people, including schoolteacher Suzanne Pleshette, are killed.

The reason for the attacks is never given; we are left to wonder: Was it because Melanie bought caged lovebirds in the opening scene? Are the birds getting back at mankind for past wrongs? We'll never know, but this is a very scary film (especially considering there is no musical soundtrack - only the menacing flapping of bird wings). Hedren is a classic ice-princess; Taylor is the earthy Everyman; they have a good chemistry between them. The rural setting makes an interesting backdrop for unexpected thrills. You'll be on the edge of your seat, waiting for the next attack of The Birds!

Studio: Universal Studios
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Actors:
Rod Taylor
Tippi Hedren




DVD title: Private Benjamin
Productgroup: DVD
Private Benjamin - movie DVD cover picture
Completely Fun


Goldie Hawn and Eileen Brennen exhibit perfect comedic timing in this film. The facial expressions, the mannerisms, the voice inflection--they all combine with a witty script to make this one of the funniest and most fun movies I have ever seen. Although at first glance, Hawn seems to be playing yet another dumb blonde; in reality, her character is not dumb but merely naive--the army provides her with the experiences to mature and to become independent. I really love this film.

Studio: Warner Studios
Director: Howard Zieff
Actors:
Goldie Hawn
Eileen Brennan




DVD title: Biography - Mahatma Gandhi: Pilgrim of Peace (A&E DVD Archives)
Productgroup: DVD
Biography - Mahatma Gandhi: Pilgrim of Peace (A&E DVD Archives) - movie DVD cover picture
Reveals the Mahatma for the human being he was


I enjoyed BIOGRAPHY - MAHATMA GANDHI because it shows Gandhi in both his greatness and his humanness. I believe that Gandhi's legacy is best preserved by remembering that he was, after all, only human. The sense I got from viewing this documentary is that the liberation of India from the British empire was just one aspect of Gandhi's quest for truth, almost an outgrowth of his inner spiritual battles. I don't think he set out to be "the Mahatma." He even writes in his autobiography THE STORY OF MY EXPERIMENTS WITH TRUTH that the title "Mahatma" (meaning "great soul") often caused him pain because he didn't want to be seen as above others in stature or spiritual enlightenment.
There are several people interviewed in BIOGRAPHY - MAHATMA GANDHI, reporters, biographers, politicians, even the Dalai Lama provides some brief comments (he mentions that deep conviction is necessary in order to maintain a nonviolent movement). But the two interviews that make the strongest impact are those with Arun Gandhi, Grandson of Mahatma Gandhi and founder of the "M. K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence" headquartered in Memphis, TN., and Lady Pamela Hicks, daughter of Earl Mountbatten (the last Viceroy of India). Both Arun Gandhi and Lady Pamela Hicks comment on something the Mahatma is not often known for: a sense of humor. Hicks says that his humor was almost "wicked," and Arun comments that the Mahatma got a good laugh out of the fact that some reporters made fun of him for supposedly looking like a monkey. "'Here's your monkey,' Grandfather would say."

Studio: A & E Home Video
Actors:
Mahatma Gandhi
Biography




DVD title: Amores Perros
Productgroup: DVD
Amores Perros - movie DVD cover picture
stunning! this film realy portrays its name well.


After seeing Amores Perros win best international film at the Baftas, I had to see the film. I ordered it over the net and when it arrived, I managed to watch it 3 times in one day. Magnificent - Congratulations Mexico on producing a truely amazing film. The film layout could not be any better, with a catestrophic car crash at the start, blending into action, arthouse and romance. In my eyes this is the best film i've ever seen, i'm not lying- AMORES PERROS-a must see!!

Studio: Studio Home Entertainment
Director: Alejandro González Iñárritu
Actors:
Emilio Echevarría
Gael García Bernal




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