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blackbird "blackbird" (Anchorage Alaska)

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Dr.Zhivago [DVD]
Dr.Zhivago [DVD]
Dvd ~ Hans Matheson
Price: £4.00

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The 2nd Zhivago movie, 19 May 2012
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This review is from: Dr.Zhivago [DVD] (DVD)
Some 37 years after the well known 1st movie we get a 2nd movie version of the book. Those who have read the book will know this movie version covers more of the book but not all of the book.

It is faster paced and longer than the 1st movie so more characters are developed. More scenes from the book are here.


Robbie Coltrane's B-Road Britain - Complete Series [DVD]
Robbie Coltrane's B-Road Britain - Complete Series [DVD]
Dvd ~ Robbie Coltrane
Offered by FREETIME
Price: £4.99

5.0 out of 5 stars really enjoyed, Robbie feels like a neighbor, 19 May 2012
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Precious little high minded pomp here. Down to earth. Good cinematography. Love the Jag which I think is an XK-150. Robbie takes the viewer to odd events and places not mention a few people.

I enjoy watching this again from time to time. I feel at home with Robbie.


Russia - A Journey With Jonathan Dimbleby : Complete BBC Series [DVD]
Russia - A Journey With Jonathan Dimbleby : Complete BBC Series [DVD]
Dvd ~ Jonathan Dimbleby
Price: £9.45

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars surprises, unusual, good for the beginner, 28 April 2012
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Full of history, unusual meetings with people. Questionable situations.

But many views of life and countryside. A bargain among travel vids in my opinion.

There are many good commenters so I need not repeat. Dislikes are present also.

But for me there are visual scenes that surprise and amaze. People from out-of-the-way places to glitzy glamour places.

Interviews of very personal depth give the feeling of being neighbors. I love the sights of children.

Dimbleby is sometimes a bit troublesome, trying too much, sometimes out of his understanding. "It could be America," he mutters as he finds a popcorn seller. "I hate popcorn," he declares but who cares? What does his prefence in food matter in his travels? His visit to a Moscow banya isn't necessary and is a pompous try to entertain. Declaring he is called little brother is a poor mannered intrusion in a young man's party.

But he makes his points all the same and he is alright by my opinion. Get him on a horse or a farm, on a sailboat and he is fine company. I'm jealous and for many good reasons.

Surprises. The tea lady on the boat was a moment of humor waiting to happen and Dimbleby plays such an unscripted moment just right. Tolstoys home is still a working farm and I wish I was there with Dimbleby. I love the place. The old retired collective farm worker woman. The herder in the mountains gives Dimbleby his horse so Dimbleby can be a herder as in very old times.

Historical places abound. The endless horror and tragedy of communist destruction is mentioned often enough for this video but just touches the subject.

Dimbleby is nothing to worry about unless you are excessively neat in which case the viewer is in need of correction, lol. He likes to show off his British upper class life but to me in my opinion, he is too often putting on airs and graces. He seems to be drawing attention to himself rather than to people and places.

Many subjects are not covered such as Chernobyl, the communist medical disaster, the nomadic native peoples of the north, and other cities on the Siberian railroad.

I like him well enough as guide although his Russian speaking producer lady Theresa Cherfas is a great guide in fact. She seems much more at home. I wish was she was featured much more often. Her presence is always welcome.


Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy / Smiley's People Double Pack [DVD] [1979]
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy / Smiley's People Double Pack [DVD] [1979]
Dvd ~ Alec Guinness
Price: £5.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars turning off subtitles, try this, seems to work for me, 13 Jan. 2012
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Play the movie for a few seconds then go to the main menu. Select the special feature "THE sECRET cENTRE" and let it play a bit then go back to the main menu. Select subtitles and to "OFF" then go back to "PLAY ALL" to restart the movie.

Subtitles are now off. At least for me.

I like the Secret Centre special feature very much.

Slogging through the details of the movie show realistic enough spy work. Not at all like 007 or Indy Jones. Human vanitys are there.

It is delightful to have an old, almost ancient, man take the main part. He seems grumpy enough and should be after getting the sack for reasons that made no sense at the time and make less sense as the movie begins and progresses.

Characters are great. The Russian agent Kirov is so funny. He wears a suit of the worst fitting and has the manners of your nasty inlaw. Grigoroff is hopeless, a fool of a husband which is understandable when you observe his greedy bossy naggy cow of a wife.

How can Karla think he will be safe by surrounding himself with these characters is humorous. The real KGB and Party were too much the same being full of friends and family memmbers.

History plays a part from time to time. The cold war with both reality and lunacy is there.


Little Dorrit [Blu-ray] [Region Free]
Little Dorrit [Blu-ray] [Region Free]
Dvd ~ Claire Foy
Price: £13.52

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars plays in the USA fine, excellent blu-ray, 12 Jan. 2012
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I'm a Yank living far across the pond and on the far side of the meadows. THIS REGION-FREE RELEASE PLAYS ON MY BLU-RAY PLAYER PERFECTLY. I'm watching disc one as I hammer my artful wordsmithing on my tattered keyboard.

The detail is amazing of course in blu-ray. Music and sound are great. I am not aware of a music cd release of the charming music but I do hope there is or will be a release of a music cd.

There is a small booklet enclosed providing brief words describing each of the 14 episodes. The case is strong. Sub-titles are included.

Other comments describle the plot and characters. All I can add is I consider this production to be a very good adaption of the novel which I have read.

The ending has been confusing for some viewers. Attention to details as the 8 hour series progresses provides the almost hidden understandings. Dickens, it seems, allowed his readers to think. The plot is not simplistic neither in the book nor this movie.

The special feature concerns the making of the film and it is excellent in my opinion.

The movie is entertaining for those new to Dickens while deeply thoughtful to fans of the writings of Dickens and the many movies based on his novels. He could tell a story with humor, justice, love, whodunnit, travel, satire, complex interweaving plots, and just plain fun.

The characters are classic examples of people and one might say Dickens is alive and well among us today.

Cynical folks may find nothing to like in this movie nor in the novels and that is a shame.

By my accounts, Dickens himself considered OUR MUTUAL FRIEND his favorite novel while his most autobiographical novel is DAVID COPPERFIELD and his most well known novel is OLIVER TWIST. Literary experts seem to pick BLEAK HOUSE as the greatest novel of Dickens.

LITTLE DORRIT has received precious little attention yet is known as a complex plot with grand satire elements downright shocking in its day.

It is hard to believe that the production crew thought the public would'nt've given the movie much of a high ranking yet the movie did very very well.

Oh yes, and a few love story elements rather unusual and certainly not the simple love stories so common today. Not boring, not a bit of it.

At 11.99 GBP this is a steal, daylight robbery, and I bought it at 12.99 GBP which is still a marvel.


Maigret - Volume 1 10 DVD Set ( Les scrupules de Maigret / Maigret et l'inspecteur Cadavre / Les petits cochons sans queue / La maison de Félicie / Signé Picpus / Maigret et l'ombre chinoise / Maigret
Maigret - Volume 1 10 DVD Set ( Les scrupules de Maigret / Maigret et l'inspecteur Cadavre / Les petits cochons sans queue / La maison de Félicie / Signé Picpus / Maigret et l'ombre chinoise / Maigret
Dvd ~ Bruno Cremer

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent, just right for me, 10 Dec. 2011
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Love it. Has English subtitles and I like them. I've read many many Maigret books. It is wonderful to see the stories set in France. I know a word or two of French so I enjoy it. Different directors and screenwriters made these movies.

By the way, volumes 1, 2, 3, and 4 have English subtitles for all movies. Volume 5 has only 2 of the ten movies with English subtitles leaving 8 without in the current release. Perhaps the future will see a release with all of volume 5 having English subtitles. Hope so. I have volumes 1 thru 4.

There are actually 54 storys in the Bruno Cremer series. The remaining 4 were released as 2 sets of 2 each without English subtitles. But.....but these releases are mighty hard to find. I hope they will also appear in the future with English subtitles.

Lots of characters of interest, some mighty so, hahahaaaaa, perhaps you'll agree.


The Incredible Human Journey [DVD] [2009]
The Incredible Human Journey [DVD] [2009]
Dvd ~ Alice Roberts
Price: £7.00

5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good for beginners, glamour, and some info from time to time, 9 Dec. 2011
I give it five stars and agree with the other comments. There are very many good points. Ihen I have some criticisms although my opinions are only just that. In a 5 hour program it seems to me that a better use of time could have been done.

The subject of human evolution is a giant subject. Homo sapien existance is still a massive study. This program is ok if viewers are new to it but there is too much waste of time.

Such as the section on comparing skin aging in China. What is that about? Then she moves on to the proper subject of facial features changing over time. Then to the contraversy about Chinese origins.

What's the taxi driver near Istanbul doing that is important to the story? A simple sentence could make a point. No need to waste time with the fellow's comments.

Why do viewers spend time watching her attempts to hit a vegetable with bow and arrow from a very close distance? It proves she is rubbish in archery. The man could have made the effort saving time and showing us something worth watching.

In a preview at the start of of episode 5 "The Americas" we watch Alice throw an atl-atl spear which goes through a car window. But it is a 2 part scene so did she actually do that or did the man? Later in the episode we see Alice and Dr. Andy Hemmings discuss Clovis points and demonstrate an atl-atl spear for hunting. But without a repeat of window piercing. Why? A spear going through a window is convincing. Very. The most interesting demo has been edited into the preview without proof she did do it. We get to see more of her fumbling attempts and more of the boring "look-at-me" style. It's a small point for me to make but such poor editing isn't very professional in my opinion.

Her program seems to lack info on the inventions of bows, arrows, spears, and atl-atl. Odd that, in my opinion. The needle is discussed and sinew. Barely.

The cartoon graphics are tolerable but in my opinion cause laughter and look crude rather than informative.

Sometimes the music seems all wrong. And about music, we are shown a flute made from carved mammoth ivory. Can we hear it even if it may be incomplete? She comments it is evidence of music yet doesn't mention percussion nor rattles. She finds the art piece of a carved phallis more interesting.

Sometimes the dvd seems more than a little bit like an SI swimsuit display as Alice ponces, prances, and struts for our viewing every now and then. Camera angles compliment her figure especially that purple strap top.

Not that I object. However that perfect model "look at me" attitude may be a modern style but after enough of it boredom sets in. She becomes too good to be true, too know-it-all, too pushy, too many airs and graces.

Not a smart way to be a guide in a film. Michael Wood can do this friendly intimate style well. He doesn't put on airs and graces, in my opinion, nor pomp.

I like the way viewers can take a peek at so many ancient sites. The Ice Ages need more coverage.

Alice does make mention of rock and cave art but in a shallow way. Not a word of new theories of German researcher Dr Michael Rappenglueck, of the University of Munich, offering an explanation that star charts were painted on the walls. Such theories were published 11 years ago or so yet omitted in Alice's presentation. Also omitted were shafts of light during the setting sun of the winter solstice. These are just 2 examples of info left out. Shallow. So shallow for a presentation of ancient prehistory human life.

She does mention the need for water but skims over it except for the ancient coast of Arabia. Drinking water is the key to survival.

The control of predators is more detailed and hurrah for her on that. Sleeping on the wild land of Africa barely touches on how humans protected themselves from predators. This important aspect of human survival seems to be a display of Alice's screenplay style of "look at me because I'm so clever, so perfect" rather than an understanding of human defences or a list of the predatory animals ancient Homo sapiens had to face in different parts of world. The cave bear is mentioned in a sentence but in an accidental way.

The animals hunted by European Neanderthals and Homo sapiens for food, hides, bones, sinew, and horn or antler, even hoof, are barely mentioned, if at all. The ancient horse, mammoth, mastodon, reindeer, aurach, wisent, giant elk, and so on are not in the program. Why? Strange omission. It gives the video a shallow feeling when such important hunting meant survival. Tanning hides for fur and leather isn't mentioned. A vital craft.

Where is the wooly rhino? Where are birds and their nests of eggs? A few sentences over several minutes may have helped.

Salmon runs in the streams were important as well and not a word in the video as well. Odd.

But we do get to see her many finger rings, bracelet, cargo trousers, and her good looks with a heaping dose of her boring style.

She looks at a reconstruction of a Neanderthal man and tells the viewer she has no want to breed with him. Could be a mutual opinion, eh? Why do viewers have to be lumbered with her opinion?


Oliver Twist [DVD]
Oliver Twist [DVD]
Dvd ~ Robert Lindsay
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: £5.92

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very detailed, embellished, great depth, 4 Feb. 2011
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This review is from: Oliver Twist [DVD] (DVD)
At this price it's daylight robbery, hours of well done story telling, no spoilers from me, and my menus are all English and subtitles are English as well. Over 6 hours of Dickens characters and plots weaving in unexpected ways. True to the themes of the book by my accounting. And then some. Humor has its places, that's certain.


Agatha Christie : The Miss Marple Collection (12 Disc Box Set) [DVD] [1984]
Agatha Christie : The Miss Marple Collection (12 Disc Box Set) [DVD] [1984]
Dvd ~ Joan Hickson
Offered by BB Corps UK
Price: £57.75

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "They"........don't make movies like this anymore, so few these days.., 7 Jan. 2011
The length of the films vary, none are short, some are quite long. In my opinion, they were made with great care and consideration for character depth, the villages, clothes, motors, all necessary for the proper time period.

I wish dvd transfer could be better, of course, but perhaps the originals put limits on transfer (and/or blu ray production in the future). Even so, I really love these stories. Sinply classic. Hardly a trace of modernity, thankfully. They tell very human stories without excess. Ironical, humorous, sweet and sour, endearing, subtle, and such characters, yes, such they are to me, sometimes I find I know people like them.

I've read many of these movies as novels. I think the films do a fine job.


Agatha Christie's Poirot - Collection 7 [DVD]
Agatha Christie's Poirot - Collection 7 [DVD]
Dvd ~ David Suchet
Price: £13.00

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank heavens and brave film makers for another set of Poirot, 16 May 2010
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Excellent characters, and well done acting of all parts even the smallest, cinematography, sounds, plus in aspect ratio of 16:9 (that is 1.78 to 1). Love the old cars. I can only hope another set is in the making. Having read some of the novels, and owning all Suchet's Poirot movies, I can only say it's great to see more movie adaptions. Cat Among the Pigeons was a favorite novel. No spoilers from me. But there are some great one-liner dialogue moments I'd love to quote.


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