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Ahmed A. Al Ajmi "Caribbean Dream" (Oman)

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Fireworks Wednesday [DVD]
Fireworks Wednesday [DVD]
Dvd ~ Asghar Farhadi
Offered by DVD Vault UK
Price: £8.99

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Film By Asghar Farhadi, 22 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Fireworks Wednesday [DVD] (DVD)
I have purchased this film after I have seen A Separation, and About Elly and I must say this film is on par with those great films. Farhadi is like a surgeon whose cinema anatomies the complexities underlying Iran's contemporary society and here through the strained relationship between a wife and her husband on the eve of the Persian New Year.

What I especially like about Asghar Farhadi's films is the powerful well-written script which reveals the facts and truths gradually in a way that challenges our assumptions about the events unfolding in front of our eyes. The acting is superb and the music is sublime.

This is a gripping drama about love, betrayal, lack of trust. domestic violence, and the emotional and physiological aches that weigh heavy on our hears and souls.

By the way, I saw The Past (Farhadi's latest film) and I even liked Fireworks Wednesday better :)

Highly recommenced.

From Up On Poppy Hill (Collector's Edition) [Blu-ray]
From Up On Poppy Hill (Collector's Edition) [Blu-ray]
Dvd ~ Goro Miyazaki
Price: £16.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Subtitles are hard to read, 21 Oct 2013
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This is a very good film as most of the reviewers have already pointed out. I just want to say one thing about the subtitles because I like to see films in their original language. The English subtitles are very tiny and hard to read. They are tiny and not easy to follow and enjoy the charm of this film at all. As a result, I had to watch the dubbed version of the film.

Africa [DVD]
Africa [DVD]
Dvd ~ David Attenborough
Price: £8.50

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As If You Have Never Seen Africa Before, 8 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Africa [DVD] (DVD)
You know what I like about the BBC? When they do something, they do it right, astoundingly right. Their work is original and exceptional. And when it comes to professionalism, they are the masters. I have seen so many wildlife documentaries about Africa on TV and DVDs, but this one is like no other. I have seen all the six episodes in two days and what a richly rewarding experience it was.

The episodes are arranged 'regionally' rather than by habitat. The BBC team, and in four years, visit some of the striking places in Africa from the Atlas Mountains in North Africa to the Cape of Good Hope in the south to bring us some of the extraordinary wildlife spectacles this ancient continent has yet to offer. Some of these unforgettable events are: two male giraffes fighting in Nambia, black rhinos socializing near a waterhole in the cover of darkness in Gorongosa National Park in Mozambique, daring lizards catching flies off sleeping lions, chimpanzees using branches to dig honeycombs out of tree barks while the young ones watching and learning, silver ants battling the scorching the brutal African sun to gather food in just 10 minutes, spectacular sand dunes shifting which took months to video, etc. Really really amazing stuff.

In the extra materials, you get to learn what patience, endurance, dedication, and professionalism it all took in order to produce such top notch film making. I really take my hat to all the BBC team members who were involved in this project.

And yeah Sir David Attenborough is the narrator (who also appears in person in some of the episodes). What a joy it was to hear his voice : )

I enjoyed Africa immensely and I highly recommend it to anyone interested in wildlife documentary films. Perfect.

Heimat - A Chronicle of Germany [DVD]
Heimat - A Chronicle of Germany [DVD]
Dvd ~ Marita Breuer
Price: £29.99

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Magnificent Journey I Wished It Did Not End, 5 Jan 2013
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This has to be the greatest TV series I have ever seen. Though it's about 15 hours long, I finished watching all the episodes in just two days. Once I've started, I could not stop. I wanted to enjoy the series for as long as possible but it was just so gripping like a vice that I could not resist waiting.

Though I come from a different cultural, historical, and political background, I could easily connect with the characters in the series. I felt like I know them, and that deep within all of us there is a shared link that connects us to each other no matter where we live or how we were brought up. I think the ability of the director and the cast to portray a universal image of humanity is one of the key factors that made watching the series such a rewarding and appealing experience to me, and to many others out there I guess.

Another reason why I fell in love with the series is the script. I must say that Edgar Reitz is a genius to come up with such a powerful and mesmerizing script. It's easily noticeable that the dialogues and monologues in the series were written by the hand of a master; by someone who truly believes in the power of the word. I sometimes had to pause the episode to contemplate what I hear on the screen and to appreciate the sheer force spoken words can stir with us. I was truly impressed because to me cinema is not only about stunning visuals but also about language and how you can combine the two to produce a richer and deeper experience.

By the way, this series is not short of fascinating visuals. There are actually a lot of breathtaking images of rural Germany. And that made me sometimes wish that all the episodes were shot in colour to savour the enchanting beauty of German countryside more and more : )

One of the things that I noticed is that the episodes are not of equal length. Some last for one hours and others exceed that to about two hours. I did not expect that. What I expected is nine episodes of approximately the same time duration each. That was not a problem though : )

I am really very delighted, and privileged, I got to know and see Heimat. I cannot recommend this highly enough to anyone interested in deep and serious cinema.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 16, 2013 7:28 AM BST

Faust [DVD]
Faust [DVD]
Dvd ~ Johannes Zeiler
Price: £5.75

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It was something new to me, 9 Oct 2012
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This review is from: Faust [DVD] (DVD)
I bought this film because it won the Golden Lion at Venice Film Festival (2011). The film was difficult. I mean it required a lot of attention and focus from the viewer especially with the added difficulty of reading the subtitles before they disappear. Though I am used to watching subtitled films, I found this one a bit challenging because the subtitles would disappear so quickly, and sometimes I had to rewind or pause the film in order to take in the dialogue. I think if the subtitles' pace was a bit slower and the font a bit larger, watching the film would have been a much easier and pleasant experience.

I think I made a mistake by watching the film without first reading Goethe's Faust and Thomas Mann's Doctor Faustus. My background of the Faust legend was not sufficient to truly appreciate the film in its entirety. I really recommend those who want to watch this film to read more about Faust. At least, you should have some background information on the topic from the Internet; Wikipedia for example. What I am going to do now is to read Goethe's Faust and watch another Faust film directed by the F.W. Murnau in 1926.

The silver lining of this film is that it introduced me to this legend and made me curious to read and learn more about it and that's why I do not feel bad after watching this somewhat challenging film.

Watching this film reminded me of other directors such as Andrei Tarkovsky (Stalker), and Wojciech Jerzy Has (The Hour-Glass Sanatorium). If you have already watched for any of these directors and liked their films, then you are very likely to love this one, too.

The directing, acting, the cinematography, the setting, the costumes were all great and evocative of the era in which this story took place.

Unfortunately, there were no extra features on the DVD. I wished there were some to make the experience of watching the film richer and more informative.

If you want to watch this film I suggest you do some research about the legend of Faust if you are not familiar with it, and bear with the swift subtitles if you do not understand German.

Umm, I will give it 4 stars : )

The World At War: The Ultimate Restored Edition 2010 [DVD] [1973]
The World At War: The Ultimate Restored Edition 2010 [DVD] [1973]
Dvd ~ Peter Tiffin
Price: £17.50

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rich and gripping documenrary series; unforgettable, 17 Sep 2012
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This is the finest and most comprehensive World War 2 documentary I have ever seen. It's so rich with information and never boring. It progresses smoothly in a way that's easy to watch and follow its finest details. I used to watch bits and fragments of the history of World War 2 on TV but having watched this series put me into a wider and more consistent perspective of the war. The script and narration were superb especially the voice of Laurence Olivier; so serene and pleasantly haunting. Also, the music by Carl Davis is simply magnificent; could not have been any better. The interviews made the series more vivid and all the more interesting. I finished watching all the 26 episodes in less than a week : )

Watch it and you'll learn a lot not only about history but also about humans' behaviours and capabilities.

Sátántangó [1994] [DVD]
Sátántangó [1994] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Peter Berling
Offered by A2Z Entertains
Price: £12.15

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My father is the sea, my mother is the earth, 30 May 2012
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This review is from: Sátántangó [1994] [DVD] (DVD)
I have just finished watching this film. I have had this film for months and was waiting for the right moment to start watching it. And this is important because you really have to be in the mood for watching a film that won't be easy to watch if you do not give it your all. The film is long, really long and I knew that I won't be able to watch it one go so I decided to watch it in three days (since it came in three DVDs). Why is the rush, after all? I found it really useful to watch the film in three settings and gave me time to reflect and let all the scenes I have watched sink in.

If you decide to watch this film, then you have to be patient otherwise you might give up on it. I am not saying that you have to be patient because the film will torture you or anything. On the contrary, it's a great film and different. Yes, it's different from all the films I watched before and I liked that. at least you get to watch something new and original.The cinematography is just superb.It's actually one reason why I had to finish the film. It's magical and surrealistic. You immediately feel that the camera is in the hands of a genius.

The direction the sequence of events are also beautifully composed. The cast are excellent. They acted with extraordinary naturality and spontaneity. Their faces! O the pain and suffering. You feel that every face has its own story to tell. A story that's buried somewhere in their eyes or the deep wrinkles on their faces. I will particularly remember the face of Futaki!

I have also to give credits to the soundtrack composer, Mihály Vig. This man is a master. Listening to the music was a joy. You will love the music.

Not everybody will enjoy this film because it's not every body. Actually, there is no film that's made for everybody. That's just impossible. There are people who would love it and those who would hate it. For those who are new to Tarr's filmography, I would recommend watching Werckmeister Harmonies (2000) as a start since it's a lighter and shorter film.

Time Of The Gypsies:region 2 compatable ntsc.Emir Kusturica's...
Time Of The Gypsies:region 2 compatable ntsc.Emir Kusturica's...
Offered by MagicoClassicMovies
Price: £14.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great film from the master, 26 May 2012
This is a great film by Kusturica. The story is about a gypsy boy is tricked by another man, Ahmed, into engaging in the world of crime by using the boy's magical powers. The story is captivating from start to finish. The music is beautiful and the acting is excellent. As one of the previous reviewers noted earlier, the only hiccup of the DVD release is the subtitles. There are minor spelling mistakes and at times the subtitles lines do not synchronize with the actors' lines. However, do not let this put you down from watching the film so that you do not miss out on one of Emir Kusturica's masterpieces.

Seven Samurai [DVD] [1954]
Seven Samurai [DVD] [1954]
Dvd ~ Toshirô Mifune

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Epic Samurai Film, 5 May 2012
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This review is from: Seven Samurai [DVD] [1954] (DVD)
This is definitely one of the best films I have ever seen. It's a thoughtful and profound film. Simple in its plot, yet powerful in the execution of its messages. This film is so great that you do not need to talk about it. You just have to watch it.

This was the first film I have seen by Akria Kurosawa. I was reluctant at first because I was afraid that I might not like it knowing that it was made in 1954 and shot in black and white. I was mistaken and the film turned out to be my favourite film of all time. Since then I have bought most of Kurosawa's films and I liked them all. I still have to watch the early Kurosawa films. And because of Akira Kurosawa I got to know other Japanese filmmakers including Shohei Imamura (Vengeance is Mine, The Eel) , Masaki Kobayashi (The Human Condition, Harakiri), Kenji Mizoguchi, Yasujirō Ozu, Hiroshi Teshigahara, Seijun Suzuki (Gate of Flesh, Tokyo Drifter) , Nagisa Ōshima (In the Realm of the Senses, Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence), Kon Ichikawa (The Burmese Harp, Fires on the Plain), Mikio Naruse (When a Woman Ascends the Stairs, Floating Clouds), and many more. Akira Kurosawa was the spark that ignited my love and appreciation for Japanese cinema.

A timeless classic from the master : )

A Short Film About Killing [1988] [DVD]
A Short Film About Killing [1988] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Miroslaw Baka
Offered by A2Z Entertains
Price: £7.39

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cinema of the highest order, 30 April 2012
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After watching this film by the great Krzysztof Kieslowski, I bought all of his films without reading any reviews and I was not disappointed. Krzysztof Kieslowski is a master. All his films are thought-provoking and so much relevant to our life. They have that human touch that make them timeless classics. Poland must be proud she gave birth to such a great soul. Love from Oman : )

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