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aiya "Rag"

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The Girl Who Could Fly
The Girl Who Could Fly
by Victoria Forester
Edition: Paperback

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars this is a made for movie kind of book, wonderful and extremely well written, 20 Feb 2010
This review is from: The Girl Who Could Fly (Paperback)
I picked up this book at a bookstore to see whether it would be suitable for sending via amazon to my 10 year old niece, ended up getting a copy for myself. Its rare that a children's book is so well written, the poetic imagery brilliantly captured by the author's words. "I was smiling the whole time( except for the part where I cried) Prepare to have your heart warmed" wrote Stephenie Meyer, author of those famous vampire books. ( This was on the cover of the book) and what is the book about? It says on the backcover' she leaves her parents farm to attend a top secret school for kids with exceptional abilities . Piper is special even among the special and there are consequences. Too crazy to consider,.. and too dangerous to ignore....' treat yourself or someone with this book.


Brigands Chapter VII [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Brigands Chapter VII [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Amiran Amiranashvili
Offered by supermart_usa
Price: £12.48

3.0 out of 5 stars interesting, as unhollywood as films can get, 15 Feb 2010
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dvd is taken from a scratchy print, so the quality isn't great. However, that sort of adds to the silent film feel because there is hardly any dialogue, just several vignettes of corruptions and violence with men in power and how easily power change hands, and these vignettes all feature the same actors and the scenes are skillfully filmed and cut together. There is the obligatory Georgian singing, piano playing, burly man strutting about, cute little children found in all Ioselliani films. with this director, its always themes and variations in the abstract as if he's composing music. I can't say the film is all that thrilling, but individual parts despite the small budget are well made which make it watchable and even clever. I read in the notes accompanying the dvd that Ioselliani doesn't think much of Tarkovsky saying that Tarkovsky always want to show how religious he is. This one statement, if it hadn't been misquoted, goes to show how much he misses the point, and why there are major retrospective aplenty for Tarkovsky and none for him.


Quantum
Quantum
by Tom Grace
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.58

2.0 out of 5 stars Ok for a 2 hour plane journey, 5 Feb 2010
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This review is from: Quantum (Paperback)
I bought this book hoping it would give me some idea about quantum vaccuums - the thing at the centre of the conflict in the book. Sadly, other than a few references and mention of it, the author delivered a book full of cliches, poor characterisations and utterly predictable B thriller plot. One interesting fact is that the author is actually a working architect, ( who writes in his spare time) so the book is filled with detailed descriptions of architectural stuff and buildings and how the characters negotiate these. If , like me you skip all these boring bits, you can read the book under two hours.


A Tree Of Palme [DVD]
A Tree Of Palme [DVD]
Dvd ~ Takashi Nakamura

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars never quite took off, 5 Feb 2010
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This review is from: A Tree Of Palme [DVD] (DVD)
the film, like its story about a wooden robot who aspires to freeing itself from returning to being a tree, never quite lose its woodeness. Like the robot, the film has the look of good animation, but it has nothing to animate. The story makes no sense, so contrived its painful to watch, and it borrow the good bits from other anime, ( magical plants and floating insects,) in an attempt at poetry, except here, they looked stuck on. The appearance is good enough to fool a lot of people and the opening sound track is truly magical. After that, its downhill all the way.


Paprika [DVD] [2007]
Paprika [DVD] [2007]
Dvd ~ Megumi Hayashibara
Offered by Springwood Media
Price: £14.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars madcap, thrilling,utterly sophisticated, authentic portrayal of dream state, 5 Feb 2010
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This review is from: Paprika [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
this dvd says what it does in the description, and I can only add that I was applauding all the way through because the scenes defy expectation and description, with its seamlessly illogical dream logic and some of it make such inventive rehash of old movies, its a wonderful postmodern treat. Truly loved it and would venture to say its the best thing I've seen in a long time.


Lust, Caution [DVD]
Lust, Caution [DVD]
Dvd ~ Tony Leung Chiu Wai
Price: £4.51

10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars the problem with ang lee's films, 29 Jan 2010
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This review is from: Lust, Caution [DVD] (DVD)
Ang Lee is undoubtedly a great master at representing his version of intimacies between people on screen. All the different shades and nuances. The problems with such prolonged close up is : 1. its a showcase for the director, 'see I can do it" but it does NOTHING else, is neither transcendent and ultimately quite pointless, not to mention boring 2. its a sign of a director who has nothing to say, and who chooses to work with a scriptwriter who has limited things to say, but both have access to sufficient skill and money to make important looking films. This is one director who, yes, takes on different challenges, from kung gu china to 18th cent england to woodstock to badlands cowboy, but the funny thing, none of his portrayals of people are convincing, ie as spirits vividly incarnated. They are very convincing as re-creations of characters from older period movies. If you don't believe me, watch a few 30s chinese films and then watch lust caution. To understand his portrayal of 50s cowboy in brokeback mountain, ( you have to look at 50s chinese films of unrequited love ) and if you have also lived in or near MOntana/ Alberta /badlands where the film was shot, you will see he's picked up absolutely NOTHING about the spirit of cowboys. With lust caution, he's on home turf, and as usual he's great at the intimate exchanges, and those close ups and minute details dominates the film. and of course the money is there for great sets costumes casts and its as good as any period extravaganza. I watched this film 3 times, once in the cinema, and as much as I would like to say its great or that ang lee is as good as director as people say he is, all I can report is that it has little to say other than the above. and the general theme is that humanity obey an impulse larger than ourselves and what a stupid way to say that. There were plenty of opportunities for subplots that would highlight, reflect that from different perspective in the film to make it richer deeper and more resonant, and neither scriptwriter nor director is astute enough to pick those up.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 6, 2010 6:01 PM GMT


4 Films By Otar Iosseliani [DVD] [1962] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
4 Films By Otar Iosseliani [DVD] [1962] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Gela Kandelaki

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars pure gold among heaps of dvd rubbish, 23 Jan 2010
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if like me you find most films being made today are a waste of time, and you like Ozu and Satyajit Ray, you will LOVE this dvd. First of all, its only 3 films by O I, the first is actually an intro to his work by moscow film museum director. I began with a quick tour of the 3 films before I chose the one to view first. Even that little glimpse revealed a director of ENORMOUS talent. The camera is always just where it should be, the people ( a lot of whom may not even be professionals) are always natural, and the echo like strains of music, simply divine and perfectly chosen. He is exactly as Tarkovsky said' Ioselliani makes 'poetry" and not fake pretentious attempt at poetry like his other friend, Konchalovsky. Fallen Leaves was originally titled 'the month of st george' aka October, st george being the patron saint of Georgia (where the director is from) and it ties creatively the season of wine making with how a man conducts his life with integrity at a time where corruption is natural, in an offhand way, with plenty of delicious everyday incidents thrown in like Jacque Tati. `i think my jaws hung open most of the time watching this film. And then I watched the 'blackbird sings'. That was harder to follow because the premise of the film was about how one is pulled in all sorts of direction in daily life and the chaos and waste that is the result. But that chaos whilst it remains chaotic was so beautifully realised, life appeared on cellloid as powerfully noticeable natural. That, is the work of a magician. Imagine he did all this in his early 30's. And then he moved to France. 40 years later, he is making films like monday morning, garden in autumn, ( all available on amazon) which contain similar motifs as his early works, eg, in Fallen Leaves, the young man is one of many chasing a single girl, and in Garden in autumn, the man is now the object to be cared for being fought over by many women. Invariably, a table, or eating at table is a strong feature as is piano playing. I couldn't help comparing the later work to earlier works, and wonder if the slapdash approach of the later works is a deliberate thing ( like the abandonment of zen master) or that his naturalistic style only attracts small film budgets because cinema goers are too unsophisticated, or that by losing his roots in exile, he lost something profound that he seeks to regain by a simple universality and not quite getting there? yet?


Gardens In Autumn [DVD]
Gardens In Autumn [DVD]
Dvd ~ Otar Iosseliani
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £8.14

2 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars a string of perky ideas, not quite a film, 21 Jan 2010
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This review is from: Gardens In Autumn [DVD] (DVD)
I watched first the interview with the director in the special features section of the dvd and that was impressive. Then I started the film, and each time I played the film, I would fall asleep after about 10 minutes. I suspect the film was made on a minuscule budget, so he had friends and colleagues walk through a few scenes that illustrate the ideas the director wishes to put forth, ie power is a prison, and to have nothing is paradise. That the film is almost watchable is down to some fine acting from the lead actor and Michel Piccoli in drag who plays his mother. critics call it charming and surreal - it think the nod to Bunuel and Tati is a good way to liven up nothing material.


Serious Moonlight [Blu-ray] [2009] [US Import]
Serious Moonlight [Blu-ray] [2009] [US Import]
Dvd ~ Meg Ryan

11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars a puff of leaden atrocious nothing, 17 Jan 2010
all the action takes place inside a vacation home. Meg Ryan, looking painfully unnatural ( most likely surgical enhancement gone wrong) plays a lawyer who tied up her husband, so he has to talk to her and can't run off with his mistress. That's pretty much the story. Don't let the cast fool you into thinking this is an OK rom com. The script is appalling, with vacuous, banal dialogues and unimaginative direction, even the decent actors can't do much for it. I feel compelled to write this review because this is truly the worst film I've ever seen in my life. Nothing happened, and what does happen makes absolutely no sense, everything is irritatingly contrived, the sets are boring, characters go no where, and camera work is atrocious. I wonder how it got made? And what happened to writing with wit and verve?


A Year in the Life of Westonbirt
A Year in the Life of Westonbirt
by Colin Tudge
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £10.87

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars a disappointment, 5 Nov 2009
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I bought this book to give to a friend for xmas, and amazon sent me what appeared to be another customer's reject. when I opened it, I can understand why. There were a few good pictures, one or two with atmosphere, but the book is neither comprehensive, nor does it give you a sense of westonbirt because there is no orientation, great penetrating insight or raison d'etre.This is most definitely NOT the book for someone who TRULY loves nature, who wants to feel the spirit of the trees, and the forces of the growth. Those vital things are sadly absent in this book. What you get is a few details of leaves, pictures of a handful of trees, and the odd walk, obvious choices of autumnal colours, the obligatory morning light streaming through trees. Its like someone took snaps from various walks through the arboretum, and then decided afterwards to use the pics for a book. The pictures ( not a lot of them) are grouped under the four seasons but the photographer;s 'eye' was looking for shapes and colour, like a lady shopping for dresses at a store, and not for something deeper. For this reason, I too will return this book to amazon. what a disappointment because I agree with the other reviewer that the arboretum really deserves a great book, and i was so looking forward to something like that.


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