Film DVD related reviews

DVD title: National Lampoon's Animal House
Productgroup: DVD
National Lampoon's Animal House - movie DVD cover picture
laugh riot

This was a great movie. Believe it or not, my MOM suggested this movie to me. Out of all people, my MOTHER! Oh well. You should get the 20th anniversary edition. It's great.

Studio: Universal Studios
Director: John Landis
John Belushi
Karen Allen

DVD title: Bringing Down The House (Widescreen Edition)
Productgroup: DVD
Bringing Down The House (Widescreen Edition) - movie DVD cover picture
Bringing Down The Box Office

Hm, Like "Mrs. Doubtfire", u could easily pass this movie by. You shouldn't, though. This movie has everything, comedy, romance, and even action. The scene when she whoops that the best, and is a reflection of what Queen Latifah can do in the music buisness, too. Definetly a must have for your DVD collection!!

Studio: Buena Vista Home Vid
Director: Adam Shankman
Steve Martin
Queen Latifah
Eugene Levy

DVD title: The Sum of Us
Productgroup: DVD
The Sum of Us - movie DVD cover picture
very touching and well made

This is a quality gay-themed film. It does help to know Aussie speak in order to understand some of the things that are said. And sometimes you have to rewind/replay to understand some of the phrases. It was a touching and humorous story. I'm glad I bought it.

Studio: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Jack Thompson
Russell Crowe

DVD title: Knebworth Concert
Productgroup: DVD
Knebworth Concert - movie DVD cover picture


Studio: Image Entertainment

DVD title: Joshua
Productgroup: DVD
Joshua - movie DVD cover picture
What a move!

It was refreshing to see this movie...if you compare Joshua to 99 percent of the [stuff] that is out there, you would agree.

Studio: Lions Gate Home Entertainment
Director: Jon Purdy
Tony Goldwyn
F. Murray Abraham

DVD title: Bear in the Big Blue House - Tidy Time With Bear
Productgroup: DVD
Bear in the Big Blue House - Tidy Time With Bear - movie DVD cover picture
My daughters favorit

Great that this one comes in spanish too. We live in Colombia and my 1 year old daughter is watching this same Bear DVD several times each week since she has 6 months. She knows when the songs are coming and prepares herself for dancing with the bear and she learned to use the tooth-brush.When she's watching the bear it gives us some free time for cooking or cleaning because she is sitting still and watching for 15 or more minutes. A great wish is to have bear also in german, because she has to learn that. German and Spanish. I think finally she will speak english too if shes watching bear in english some times.

Studio: Columbia Tristar Hom

DVD title: Crimes and Misdemeanors
Productgroup: DVD
Crimes and Misdemeanors - movie DVD cover picture
Choose your life

I've watched Woody Allen's "Crimes and Misdemeanors" perhaps 10 times since the movie was released. I consider it an outstanding film for several reasons. First, the underlying moral questions are profound. See the flashback scene, for example, to the Seder dinner. Listen to the conversation and reflect on the questions raised. Second, the acting is superb, especially by Landau and Houston, but all the characters are memorable. Third, the dialogue combines humor and seriousness is a way rarely seen in American films. Fourth, the sound track is refreshingly sophisticated, combining big band classics with Schubert. Fifth, the construction of the story is well-balanced, juxtaposing different characters and their dilemmas, but always moving toward the ending. This is no "Hollywood Movie." Wm. Paul McKane

Studio: Image Entertainment
Director: Woody Allen
Woody Allen
Martin Landau

DVD title: Titus Season 1 & 2
Productgroup: DVD
Titus Season 1 & 2 - movie DVD cover picture
Hilarious sitcom since "Married..with children"

I saw a couple of the first episodes and loved them. Unfortunately after that I stopped watching because the show kept changing days and times and I kept missing them. The show deserved better treatment as the comedic writing was excellent.

Christopher Titus stars as a hot body shop owner who has a naive brother, Dave, a paranoid and coward friend, Tommy, a very supportive girlfriend, Erin, and an abusive, alcoholic father, "DAD." Each episode begins as Titus is inside a closet giving a monologue and telling flashbacks of his high school days in the 80s. It is hilarious seeing him protray his youth. The rest of the episode involves some of the best comedy on television. From Titus's accusation of Erin's affair, his father's intervention to start drinking again, to Tommy's crazy "girlfriend".

This is a twisted comedy along the lines of "Married with children" and "Arrested Development". It is great to finally see it on DVD, but it is a shame not to have seen this comedy run longer. It had the highest rating over 2 other shows, but it's over-the-edge comedy was too much for FOX. I recommend getting this DVD as this is a hilarious, dysfunctional family sitcom with black comedy and physical humor.

BTW Christopher Titus stills tours and I heard he will return to television with another twisted show. Hopefully it appears on Comedy Central, where limits can be pushed!!!

Studio: Anchor Bay Entertain
Christopher Titus

DVD title: What's Up, Tiger Lily?
Productgroup: DVD
What's Up, Tiger Lily? - movie DVD cover picture
You may not see it anywhere else

This is one of Woody's earliest movies, and perhaps, especially given it's obscurity, his best! The video portion of the movie appears to have been a Japanese Action/Adventure movie featuring a swinging James Bond-type hero surrounded by beautiful women and rival gangsters. Allen has dubbed the movie and has changed the plot, from what was probably a typical 007 scheme, to a scavenger hunt for a secret egg salad recipe! Allen interupts the film on a few occasions to provide commentary, and also splices in a couple of psychadelic rock (mock?) videos. I think you will agree that this is another testament to Allen's artistic versatility and comic genius. This is a very funny movie. END

Studio: Image Entertainment
Woody Allen

DVD title: A Clockwork Orange
Productgroup: DVD
A Clockwork Orange - movie DVD cover picture
One of Kubrick's finest films brutal to the core

It was rated X when it first came out. Why? The violence is so repulsive that the ratings board decreed that it should only be seen by someone over the age of 21. That didn't hurt its box office. A Clockwork Orange captures many of the bleaker aspects of Burgess novel. Kubrick wraps the story in a pop art day glo look. It's very much a movie of its time.
Our hero is Alex the leader of a violent gang who is captured after committing "ultra violence" which includes the rape and murder of a prominent writer. The government decides to make an example of Alex. Using a form of behavior modification, they make violence repulsive (to the point where Alex becomes physically ill). He's proclaimed "cured" and released now a potential victim vs. the predator he was before.
While Kubrick's film decries the esmasculation of others in pursuit of peace, he also satirizes the very government that attempts to make Alex safe for society. Kubrick seems to be arguing that redemption isn't possible for Alex and that, in fact, society will never be free of the predators around us. He implicates everyone in this failure of society and suggests that it's (much like he did in Dr. Strangelove, Paths of Glory and 2001)that violence fuels much of our society.
The imagery in Orange is still amazing fresh and vital 30 years on. As a satire, Orange occasionally fails; Kubrick's point of view doesn't exist. His detached style makes the film nonjudgemental about Alex and the world he grew up in. That approach makes it appear as if Kubrick approves of the very violence he deplores; the film is celebrated by those who miss the point for the violence at the heart of the film.
This DVD transfer is a huge improvement over the first release. There's very little of the analog artifacts (i.e., scratches, dirt, etc)that marred the original release of this classic film. The oustanding transfer does justice to Kubrick's vision. The color, flesh tones, blacks and grays are right on target as far as I can tell. There's little of the edge enhancement that marred the previous release as well. The widescreen composition is intact as well.
The sound has been digitally remastered in dolby digital 5.1 and sounds much improved over the previous version as well. The improvement doesn't jump out at you the way the visual improvements do. Obviously the 5.1 format isn't used here quite as effectively as more contemporary films (when it was released stereo was a luxery afforded few film releases) but it's utilized quite nicely.
There really aren't any extras to speak of except for the original trailer. Why a documentary wasn't produced and added to this release is beyond me. Perhaps it had more to do with Kubrick's private nature. Since Malcolm McDowell, David Prowse and other cast members are alive, the least that Warner could have done was provide an audio commentary. Perhaps with Kubrick gone they'll do that with the next edition. Hopefully we'll see a quality documentary about the controversy surrouding the film similar in nature to the one recently added to the Dr. Strangelove re-release.
Orange isn't an easy film to watch or to appreciate. It also isn't an easy film to pidgeonhold. Those very qualities make for great cinema. Unfortunately, Kubrick's and Burgess' vision is subject to intrepetation which has allowed Orange to be both misunderstood and misjudged ever since the day of its release. Kubrick's film doesn't make the case for violence but does suggest that violence is the heart and soul that fuels humanity. His cool, detached style also suggests that there is little hope of escaping the qualities that allowed us to arise out of the muck of creation and rule the world. It's a sad but true observation about our world.

Studio: Warner Studios
Director: Stanley Kubrick
Malcolm McDowell
Patrick Magee

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