Profile for Simon Yates > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Simon Yates
Top Reviewer Ranking: 79,974
Helpful Votes: 135

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Simon Yates "Simon" (UK)

Page: 1 | 2 | 3
Twilight: Twilight, Book 1 (Twilight Saga)
Twilight: Twilight, Book 1 (Twilight Saga)
by Stephenie Meyer
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.29

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's not just for girls..., 12 April 2010
There is no way that I wrote this review. Why would I? How could I give four stars to a novel in which the teenage heroine does nothing but fall over and simper over an alabaster skinned emo? It's impossible.

But I loved it... I wanted to be Bella. It transported me back to my youth when relationships were so much more intense and, more often than not, unrequited. Don't get me wrong I love being married and having children, but nothing comes close to the feeling of exquisite hopelessness of adoring someone you consider out of your league. When you get older, more cynical, more hardened to the world you begin to guard against being hurt and once those barriers are in place life becomes a little less vivid.

Stephenie Meyer has somehow created a portal back to a time when I felt as acutely as Bella does. Embarrassed? Possibly. Youthful? Certainly. As if my life could never be complete unless I fall in love with a vampire? Always.

Dark Fire (The Shardlake Series)
Dark Fire (The Shardlake Series)
by C. J. Sansom
Edition: Paperback
Price: £4.00

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Medieval Mayhem Mastered by Matthew... (sorry), 30 Mar. 2010
"I don't know how to describe Matthew Shardlake."
"How about: a hunchback Tudor lawyer."
"That sounds far too silly to actually work."
"But that's what he is. And it does work." My literary appreciation raises a superior eyebrow. "Doesn't it?"
"Well yes. But I don't now how it works. I really want to know more about him. And I like him and I really want something nice to happen to him. Tudor England sounds so grim and horrid..."
"And he's a beacon of thoughtful conscience juxtaposed against the stark brutality of the times."
"Oooo. That'll do. That's Matthew Shardlake."

Alright, Still
Alright, Still
Price: £2.75

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I prescribe Lily for growing old grumpiness..., 15 July 2009
This review is from: Alright, Still (Audio CD)
I'm a stuffy old codger who couldn't stand Lily Allen when she first elbowed her way into the spot light from the ghettoes of Hammersmith and private schools. She seemed far too perky and rude to appeal to me and so I dismissed her from my thoughts and ears for a long time.

Unfortunately I did this before I'd actually listened to any of her songs, and so I shall take this opportunity to apologise whole-heartedly for my prejudices and hope these five orange stars make up for it somewhat.

And now that I have listened, I think all her songs are deliciously perky and rude and tongue-in-cheek and serious and fantastic. Each one different, but each bearing her very distinctive style.

She's a product of today's society no doubt, swearing, leering and pseudo-celebrity-common, but she swears so well and leers so prettily that she makes today's society seem rather big and rather clever.

Even for someone as curmudgeonly as me...

Mamma Mia! The Movie [DVD] [2008]
Mamma Mia! The Movie [DVD] [2008]
Dvd ~ Meryl Streep
Offered by Qoolist
Price: £3.78

52 of 75 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The first truly marvelous film for the bi-polar, 23 Dec. 2008
I have a confession to make: I love musicals.

I also think Meryl Streep is a fantastic actress and I adore Julie Walters unconditionally. I also love the Greek islands and I have had Abba Gold on my iPod for as long as I've owned one. So toss these ingredients into a celluloid melting pot and what golden nugget will emerge?

A pile of unspeakable hogwash, that's what.

"Whoa there! You can't say that! It's just a feel good summer movie! You're missing the point! It's not meant to be a literary film! It's just meant to make you feel happy!" I hear a million happy, satisfied film-goers raging. "You don't understand! You don't get it!"

Well, no. I don't get it. But it's the laziness of the whole thing that staggers. I have no real problem with the saggy plot, nor the singing from some of the lead characters. No, what I don't like are, firstly, the needless emotional roller-coasters some of the characters insist on inflicting upon me, and secondly the sheer idleness of the script when it comes to song insertion. I double-heartedly believe the writers must have written the first draft and then merely inserted a song wherever they found a single line of the script matched a single line of a song. And they didn't care a single iota of a jot whether or not the song in its entirety actually made sense in the context of the movie. "Who cares? It's still fun!" Quiet you lot.

The exceptions to this rule of scriptwriting are the twee song on the boat and embarrassing song on the beach, where the scriptwriters earned their money by actively wrestling a song in. Whether it wanted to be there or not.

There are some good things in the film which mean that I don't have to hack in to Amazon's scoring system to enable a minus star rating. The beautiful scenery and an all too short dance routine whilst the chorus are wearing flippers. Two hours of flipper dancing with the twinkling azure of the Mediterranean behind would have been a thousand times more entertaining than this rubbish.
Comment Comments (8) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 24, 2014 11:41 AM GMT

The Field Guide (Spiderwick Chronicles, book 1)
The Field Guide (Spiderwick Chronicles, book 1)
by Tony DiTerlizzi
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £6.99

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but too short., 28 Oct. 2003
This book needs to be looked at as much as read. The prose is nicely written and atmospheric, but the illustrations taken alongside the text make this into a really beautiful book. The people who publish it have taken great pains to make this an enjoyable experience and I hope more publishers follow this trend.
The downside to this is the price. When you put all five Spiderwick books together you will get about the same number of words as a normal novel, just split over five books, and therefore you will be paying five times as much.
This said, however, I would pay it.

Page: 1 | 2 | 3