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Zoe Butler "Zoe" (United Kingdom)

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Journey to the Centre of the Earth [DVD] [1977]
Journey to the Centre of the Earth [DVD] [1977]
Dvd ~ Juan Piquer Simón
Price: £12.81

2.0 out of 5 stars For Verne or Kenneth More Completists Only, 30 Nov. 2015
A travesty with some wasted talent and one or two redeeming features. It's a novelty to see Kenneth More acting with apparent amateurs. I am not being mean. Good direction could have improved it, but it is obvious that it has been partially dubbed into English, so that some of the shall we say 'less experienced' actors did not know what the others were saying, probably because they were speaking on set in another language. Kenneth More's performance is uncharacteristically laid back and low key. There is nothing of the Kenneth More we know and love from Reach For the Sky and Doctor in the House. He even looks a bit bewildered at times, and so he might. The elements of the Verne story are there, and the script wouldn't be too bad if it could be sharpened up a bit. But I did not recognise the Professor Lidenbrock of the novel. And why did one actor keep calling him: 'Lindenbrook'? There is potential for farce in some parts, but the lines and action are thrown away. It's just not tight enough. But if you love the story, or More, you will get something out of it -- if you watch it alone. It looks very much like a 1970s continental European film, shot on a small budget, not to say a production line. Oh, and I found the music repetitious and annoying.

There are some interesting additional science fiction type elements with the new character, the mysterious Olsen. He seems to be a borrowing from Bulwer Lytton or H. P. Lovecraft which are intriguing, but I wanted more of them. It was almost a kind of 'Jules Verne meets (1970s) Doctor Who'. The special effects let it down, though. I don't expect CGI in a 1970s film, but the 'dinosaurs' (?) are like muppets. They are like the John Pertwee Dinosaur invasion monsters; glove puppets. Even the distributors realised the mistake of the 'giant tortoises' and removed them from their re marketed print sold as, "Where Time Began" -- which I would certainly not recommend, because it's less value for money, having been cut to ribbons.

What else can I say? It's a brave attempt, but it's shaky and rattling around in their with: Timothy Hine's 'H.G. Wells' War of the Worlds' and it's even on the level of 'Plan 9 From Outer Space' but without the charm and unwitting humour. Some of the special effects work, some misfire very badly. I like the storm, I think that was well done, but most of the set pieces come off much better in the 1959 Fox film with James Mason. Despite the fact that they were iguanas with fins glued to them, the Dimetrodons in the earlier film are still much more convincing than the rubber oven gloves in this effort.

As I said, for completists only, watch it on your own, and it might just charm you. :)


Ulysses
Ulysses
Offered by Audible Ltd

5.0 out of 5 stars Jim Norton's reading is wonderful, he really brings it to life, 20 Oct. 2015
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This review is from: Ulysses (Audio Download)
Jim Norton's reading is wonderful, he really brings it to life. Marcella Riordan is excellent too, reading the women, especially Molly. If you found Ulysses difficult, this will make everything clear, and funny, wonderfully riotously funny.


The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1: Prelude No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 847
The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1: Prelude No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 847
Price: £0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent as usual., 18 Oct. 2015
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Excellent as usual.


Book of Snobs
Book of Snobs
by Duke of Bedford
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars It's Satire: Stupid., 25 Aug. 2015
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This review is from: Book of Snobs (Paperback)
This is a very funny book. And despite being around forty years old, it is still relevant -- though not in any way you might imagine. It purports to be a kind of textbook for social climbers. It is not. And just to cover himself, the titular author spells it out in no uncertain terms that only someone who is very rich can actually 'climb the social ladder'. And of course, someone who is very rich would not need a handbook or 'rough guide for social climbers' in order to do so. Money talks. And if you ain't got no money, you'd better stay where you belong, you dreadful oik! On this slender, delicate hook, The (late) Thirteenth Duke of Bedford -- largely and ably assisted by the wonderful humorist George Mikes -- has hung the British 'snobocracy' out to dry and smoked it like a kipper. All the foibles of the rich, powerful, and chinless are displayed for all to see -- the high and low. Lord Bedford doesn't mind ridiculing himself either, on occasion. And just in case we still don't get the joke, there are some marvellous Nicolas Bentley cartoons as signposts along the way.

So, if you have a few million pounds in the bank, and you think hunting down and killing defenceless wild animals, staying overnight in draughty, possibly verminous castles without even a television to watch, or just supporting a particularly brainless Conservative candidate is a good idea, this is the book for you! On the other hand, if you think it's about time that Britain entered the twenty-first -- or at least the twentieth century -- and enjoy a good laugh at our betters' inbred foibles, then you could do worse than throwing another peasant on the fire and curling up with this slender tome for an hour or three.


The Best of James Joyce (Annotated) Including: Ulysses, Dubliners, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, and Chamber Music
The Best of James Joyce (Annotated) Including: Ulysses, Dubliners, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, and Chamber Music
Price: £0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Ulysses: Funny and Clever -- But Mostly Funny, If You Let It Be, 25 Aug. 2015
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What can I say? Ulysses is actually a very funny book. But it is also a very clever one. Everything else is arguable. And gallons of ink have been spent in the arguing thereof. It's a long book. And it can be a difficult one, largely because it is written in so many different styles. Just as you get used to one style of writing, and one type of joke, it switches to something quite different. This can put off the uninitiated. And I say, 'uninitiated' advisedly, because 'Ulysses' is like an ancient mystery school initiation with its many different trials and ordeals, twists and turns. Just don't take it too seriously. And if possible, drink a half bottle of whiskey before you start and you'll be approaching it in the right spirit!

If you do read it, people will admire you. Just don't let on that it was actually a very funny book and they'll treat you like some kind of god!


Date
Date
Dvd

5.0 out of 5 stars Play Nice., 25 Aug. 2015
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This review is from: Miranda - Season 1 (Amazon Video)
Obviously, I enjoyed it. I've given it five stars. Miranda is quite frankly at play here, and we're all invited to join in, like the bunch of kids we all are -- at least some of the time. It's a children's party for grownups! Nothing very deep. Nostalgia Central with pop and sweeties.

To all the people who gave it only one star -- fair enough. That's your choice, and I think it's marvellous that we can all differ. Live and let live is what I say. And we know we're being shallow. There's a time for shallowness, just like there's a time for profundity.

I don't mind at all people saying they hate the show and can't bear to watch it. They are entitled to say that they think it's awful, badly written or anything else -- although they might care to contemplate its popularity. And I know that popularity is no guarantee of quality. But comedy is a social phenomenon. We laugh at what our friends laugh at. We don't all have the same friends. And we don't all have the same experiences. If something resonates with us, if Miranda Hart's style of comedy rings true, then it is probably because we share a common fund of humour. Perhaps we have a bossy, snobbish and silly mother that we love in spite of all that. Perhaps we were brought up to not be open about our feelings -- and our sexual feelings in particular. Perhaps we have silly, shallow friends who still call us by nicknames we hoped we'd outgrown. Or perhaps we just sympathise with a gauche, ungainly character who acts like a social fish out of water and doesn't know how to get what she wants out of life? It doesn't matter if we are uncomfortable about the main character breaking the Fourth Wall -- although it is a well established device going back hundreds of years. If we find nothing humorous in Amanda Hart's style of comedy, then we should should shrug our shoulders and move on. There is plenty of other comedy around.

What is inappropriate about some of the reviews is that the reviewers resort to insulting Miranda's audience in order to emphasise their points. To tell people who enjoy 'Miranda' that they 'suffer from arrested development' or that they 'need a lobotomy' is -- if anything -- demonstrating that the reviewers need to check their own attitudes, and quite possibly, their own sense of proportion -- or dare I say it -- sense of humour. Yes,of course you are entitled to your opinion. And so are we all.

So, play nice, children. Don't be a bully. If you enjoy something, say so, and tell it from the heart. If you do not enjoy it, and it does nobody any harm, just have your say -- and move on. There's enough jelly, cakes and lemonade for everyone!


The End of Diabetes: The Eat to Live Plan to Prevent and Reverse Diabetes
The End of Diabetes: The Eat to Live Plan to Prevent and Reverse Diabetes
by Joel Fuhrman
Edition: Paperback
Price: £11.21

5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 4 Mar. 2015
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Excellent


Transparent Things (Penguin Modern Classics)
Transparent Things (Penguin Modern Classics)
Price: £8.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 4 Mar. 2015
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Excellent


H. G. Wells (Leather-bound Classics)
H. G. Wells (Leather-bound Classics)
Price: £5.69

5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 4 Mar. 2015
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Excellent


The Zanthodon MEGAPACK ®: The Complete 5-Book Series
The Zanthodon MEGAPACK ®: The Complete 5-Book Series
Price: £0.74

5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 4 Mar. 2015
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Excellent


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