Profile for Benson > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Benson
Top Reviewer Ranking: 3,185
Helpful Votes: 935

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Benson (Cardiff, UK)

Page: 1-10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16
Glee: The Music, The Christmas Album
Glee: The Music, The Christmas Album
Offered by mrtopseller
Price: 6.00

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Glee does the holidays!, 29 Nov 2010
They've done Madonna... they've done Britney. This time the folks at Glee tackle numerous festive numbers just in time for the holiday season. It's a great collection of songs and one that will no doubt be enjoyed by even those unfamiliar with the show. For the most part the songs are very different to anything Glee has done before.

The solo lead numbers come in the form of Lea Michelle [Rachel] taking on 'O Holy Night' and 'Merry Christmas Baby' (typically more musical theatre influenced as you would expect from her character). Amber Riley [Mercedes] performs the traditional 'Angels We Have Heard On High' in a very pleasant upbeat gospel version and Matthew Morrison [Will] does a very slow and chilled out Michael Buble-esque 'O Christmas Tree'. I didn't care so much for the 'Mr Grinch' number but it's very different and perhaps will make more sense when the accompanying episode is screened.

Cory Monteith [Finn], Mark Salling [Puck] and Kevin McHale [Artie] feature on a toe-tapping, upbeat jazz reworking of 'Jingle Bells'. Newcomer and fan favorite Darren Criss [Blaine] duets with Chris Colfer [Kurt] on a jazz piano/string arrangement of 'Baby It's Cold Outside'. A great addition and will surely add further to his growing popularity.

The ensemble numbers include 'The Most Wonderful Day of the Year' and 'We Need A Little Christmas' which have a very 'classic holiday movie' feel; infact they could've come straight out of a Christmas musical from the 60s.

'Deck the Rooftop' samples the traditional 'Deck the Halls' and is one of the more poppy, catchy, contemporary numbers. The collection is rounded off with the Glee girls taking on a beautifully stripped down R&B take on the traditional 'God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman'. All the girls really get to stand out on this one including Naya Rivera [Santana] and Dianna Agron [Quinn]. 'Last Christmas' is about the only contemporary pop number found on this collection but it's a welcome one at that! Unfortunately if you wanted to see more Chord Overstreet [Sam] he is almost unrecognisable on the ensemble numbers and Jane Lynch [Sue] is evidently missing.

Glee and the holidays are definitely a great match. One for any fan of Glee or Christmas pop albums!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 19, 2010 10:01 PM GMT

Merry Christmas II You
Merry Christmas II You
Price: 8.49

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfectly Festive, 28 Nov 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I'll admit first I am not a huge Mariah fan. I do not own any of her full albums... just a few of her bigger hits. I don't doubt she is an extremely amazing vocalist but when I see her music videos I can't help but think far too much effort goes into 'looking good'. I look at her latest music video for 'Oh Santa' and just find it incredibly distracting how much effort goes into hiding the fact she is pregnant.

Likeability factor aside this a really great festive offering. I was persuaded to get this by the Amazon 'Friday 5' mp3 offer and my love of Christmas pop music. I'm glad I got it though. Will she ever top the brilliance of 'All I Want For Christmas Is You'? Unlikely... but Mariah can definitely do the 'Christmas album' like no other. 'Oh Santa' starts it all off nicely... then there are plenty of pleasing traditional numbers ('Oh Little Town of Bethlehem', 'The First Noel/Born is the King and 'O Come All Ye Faithful') and more modern including an R'n'B working of 'Here Comes Santa Claus'. There is even a nice nod to her first Christmas album with a live version of 'Oh Holy Night' proving she really can hit those squeaky high notes in person. Not sure how I feel about the dance take on 'Auld Lang Syne'... one to decide for yourself! 'All I Want For Christmas' has little changed to it... I would have loved to see something completely new done with it. Perhaps an acoustic, stripped down version with just piano. No qualms including it though, it is a Christmas classic after all.

If it's that time of year and you love listening to Christmas music by popular artists you are going to love this. I hope many of you will agree that Mariah should have more faith in her amazing vocals rather than worry if the wind machine is at the best angle possible. Happy holidays to all!

Messy Little Raindrops
Messy Little Raindrops
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: 5.34

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars One for the fans!, 5 Nov 2010
This review is from: Messy Little Raindrops (Audio CD)
Would tend to agree with most reviews that have already gone up. At first listen 'Messy Little Raindrops' is a little bland and repetitive. It's not as strong as a whole as '3 Words'. However, on second listen there are some great feel good tracks that have potential as future singles. Most noticeably, 'Live Tonight', 'The Flood', 'Everyone' (with Dizzy Rascal) and 'Better to Lie' (with August). The already released 'Promise This' is probably the strongest song on the album though.
Truth is, as a standalone the album is unlikely to win over any new fans... but for the armies of devotees who already adore Cheryl Cole, they will find something to like here. And there's nothing wrong with being a fan pleaser. If nothing else, it's a good album for the car or to listen while getting ready to go out.

Back To Scratch
Back To Scratch
Offered by MasterDVD
Price: 4.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding!, 5 Nov 2010
This review is from: Back To Scratch (Audio CD)
On Charlotte's latest release in five years there is so much to like. The main weakness of 'Tissues & Issues' was the vocal battle with what style works. You'll remember 'Crazy Chick' having an extremely different vocal sound and approach to something like 'Even God'. Not the case here though... Charlotte has really found her sound here keeping that beautiful pureness and vibrato from her classical technique. That really stands out on a lot of the tracks.
My favorite moments outside of the title track 'Back to Scratch' include 'We Were Young', 'Cup of the Sun', 'Honestly' and 'Snow'. I think the big winner with this album is the lyrical sincerity and really organic production style. There are many moments with little more than vocals and guitar but it is really gorgeous to listen to. There is an almost 'retro' feel across the entire album... it feels very sixties to me at times. This could well be my favorite album of 2010.

Babel [DVD]
Babel [DVD]
Dvd ~ Brad Pitt
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: 2.73

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping!, 24 May 2010
This review is from: Babel [DVD] (DVD)
I'm a big fan of the director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (most notably famous for the hugely popular Amores Perros) so there was no doubt I wanted to own this movie.
'Babel' works in the same way as the directors other movies in that four separate stories are cleverly woven together. 'Babel' differs in that the stories are not only separated by language but by culture... the stories set in Morocco, Mexico, Japan and the US respectively. To sum up I found the stories in the movie absolutely gripping. I especially enjoyed the story set in Japan where we get a little glimpse into the world behind the eyes of a deaf girl... something I felt very unique about this movie. This movie does require a certain amount of concentration because of the differing languages... so not one for those who don't enjoy subtitled movies. There are some very thought provoking moments in the movie... I know for certain I'll watch this again in the future!

Sleeping Beauty (50th Anniversary Platinum Edition) (1959) [DVD]
Sleeping Beauty (50th Anniversary Platinum Edition) (1959) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Mary Costa
Offered by smith@uk
Price: 14.99

76 of 79 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spectacular, 15 Oct 2008
Unfortunately demand from the public caused Sleeping Beauty to be almost rush released a few years ago. Now it's fantastic to have this classic back getting the 'Platinum Edition' treatment it deserves.
The digital restoration makes Sleeping Beauty look incredible... beautiful is kind of an understatement. If you researched into this film you'd discover that Walt's vision was for the art to carry the movie. Being able to see Sleeping Beauty in its original widescreen splendidness certainly highlights that. The restoration really makes those colorful backgrounds stand out. It's incredible to think that this entire movie was produced by hand even though some of the special effects look like they could have been produced in the computer editing process (that kind of editing wasn't invented in the era of this movie though). Sleeping Beauty truly was the end to an era.
The extras are the standard kind of thing we've come to expect from Disney's 'Platinum' series... deleted scenes, a making of featurette, deleted songs, an alterate opening and some games for the really young ones. The 'making of' is extremely informative and a must for anyone fascinated by the art of this movie. Disney have kept this fresh for the new generation by having Emily Osment of Hannah Montana fame sing a new version of 'Once Upon A Dream' in an exclusive music video just for the DVD.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 18, 2009 3:14 PM GMT

The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning [DVD]
The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning [DVD]
Dvd ~ Peggy Holmes
Price: 6.56

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sequels on the mend, 22 Sep 2008
It's true... Disney has delivered a few sequels to their most famous movies which in someways offend the original...

Would be silly to say Ariel's Beginning matches the brilliance of the original movie but it is definitely an improvement on The Little Mermaid 2: Return To The Sea. The animation looks great and it is fantastic that almost all the original voice cast are back including Jodi Benson as Ariel.

It's a very interesting story with a little glimpse at Ariel's mother. When she is involved in a tragic accident King Triton is broken and Atlanta changes into a boring, military-like kingdom when he bans music. We learn a lot of the backstory of The Little Mermaid... why it is Ariel loves music... why Sebastian becomes the musical director of Atlanta... and how Ariel meets Flounder.

If you liked the other two mermaid films you'll definitely find something to like about this one. The extras which include a glimpse into the making of the Little Mermaid on Broadway are very interesting!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 23, 2008 6:41 PM BST

The Catherine Tate Show : Complete BBC Series 3 [2006] [DVD]
The Catherine Tate Show : Complete BBC Series 3 [2006] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Catherine Tate
Price: 6.32

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Best of the three, 15 Nov 2007
I think this series of the Catherine Tate Show was the strongest of her three. Many people I have spoken to did not find her first series very funny and I can understand that as I had to watch it a number of times to really *get* it.

By series three she is on form though and has filtered out the weaker characters. I think where Catherine Tate wins in comparison to Little Britain is that she is better at keeping her regular characters fresh. The asbo teen Lauren, the foul mouthed granny, Bernie the nurse and the in denial Derek all return here in fresh, hilarious scenarios. Of the new sketches Geordie Georgie is especially welcome with her persistant and random fundraising antics.

As a DVD this is slightly disapointing. There are only six episodes to this series and the only extra is selected commentary on select scenes. This would have been much better value if there were some more features such as 'Behind The Scenes' or they could have included one of Catherine Tates many interviews (Richard & Judy/Paul O Grady) like they often do with the Little Britain sets. Additionally, if you were expecting to have the Comic Relief specials included they are not on here.

If you enjoyed Series 2 you'll love this new series. If you're new to Catherine Tate give this a go if your sense of humour is along the lines of Little Britain.

Offered by filmrollen
Price: 4.34

9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The return of Britney Spears, 29 Oct 2007
This review is from: Blackout (Audio CD)
Since her Greatest Hits release back in 2004, Britney Spears has not stayed out of the media. Unfortunately, her personal life has far overshadowed her music career so the question now is can Britney still deliver?

'Blackout' sticks to a similar sound throughout... upbeat, heavy on production, electro-dance-pop numbers. It's evident from the choice of producers that Britney has gone for a sound that is really "in" at the moment and it works well for her. While this is a new funky sound for Britney, there are still a few nods to her previous efforts. 'Radar' is an annoyingly catchy song only someone like Britney can pull off.

Many critics are saying Britney's vocals have an uninteresting computerised sound on this new record. This is unfair criticism as only two of the songs overly use this effect and it's very obvious that it has been done intentionally to fit the sound of the track.

There's a few potential hits here ('Break The Ice' is sure to be a future single) but what disappoints most is not seeing a bigger range of sounds. If you're expecting to hear Britney explore her personal troubles in a heartfelt ballad you won't find it here... this is strictly a dance record.

If you like the direction taken with 'Gimme More' you're sure to find something else to appreciate here. This record won't be Britney's downfall and I'm sure her emotional exploration is all to come...

Shock Value
Shock Value
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: 3.79

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Weaker than expected, 5 April 2007
This review is from: Shock Value (Audio CD)
I would have to agree with many of the previous reviewers that were a bit disapointed.

I was expecting Timbaland to have kept all his best stuff for his own release but unfortunately the overall content does not match his work on 'Loose' or 'Futuresex/Lovesounds'.

The lead single 'Give it to Me' is fantastic but I wasn't convinced many of the other tracks matched it and nothing particularly groundbreaking. 'Give It To Me' aside my favourites were 'The Way I Are', 'Apologize' and '2 Man Show'.

I think where this CD fails is the collaborations. With some of the names featured you expect something particularly memorable. Nicole Scherzinger is hardly recognisable on 'Scream' and the track doesn't even compare to her collaboration with Diddy. As a Justin Timberlake fan I was disapointed with the two other tracks featuring him. 'Release' even sounds like some of the vocals could have been recycled from Justin's 'Futuresex/Lovesounds'... the backing vocals sound almost identical to 'Sexyback' at points.

Conclusion... by all means buy this if you're a fan of Timbaland but don't expect to dig the entire CD.

Page: 1-10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16