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Lendrick (London)
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Sleeping Beauty [DVD]
Sleeping Beauty [DVD]
Dvd ~ Emily Browning
Offered by hunting_for_a_bargain
Price: £22.98

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Dull and dire prentention, 23 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Sleeping Beauty [DVD] (DVD)
It's hard to believe that a film with Emily Browning giving a decent performance in the lead role - and appearing frequently in various states of undress - could be so boring. But somehow Sleeping Beauty achieves this. It's a flat film with no character or plot depth, plenty of nudity but no eroticism and precious little engagement on the part of this viewer. Avoid


The Man Who Forgot His Wife
The Man Who Forgot His Wife
by John O'Farrell
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Divorce with laughs?, 23 Nov. 2012
The basic premise of this novel is a fascinating one. A man on the tube with no personal memories - doesn't know who he is, not even his name (it's Vaughan). He learns he is married with 2 kids, but on the verge of divorce - a divorce he instigated. He has to reasses his life, as bits of his memory come back.

However, the book doesn't quite live up to the possibilities of the set-up. O'Farrell is a decent writer who can be very funny (bits of this are laugh out loud). While the scenes where Vaughan remembers the rows and stresses that lead to the divorce proceedings are acutely observed, upsetting in parts. But blending the two successfully is a tricky task, one that for me O'Farrell isn't up to. It requires a degree of emotional subtlety that `lad-lit' doesn't really allow for.

I didn't warm to either Vaughan or his wife, both of whom seemed immature and self indulgent. There is a scene involving a school play late on that seems to typify this. Their long suffering kids were the only sympathetic characters. So I didn't really care how it turned out, which is another problem. Being a comic novel you know how it will resolve, which drains the plot of any tension. So the story telling starts to feel laboured, only enlivened by some comic set pieces. Though many of these are supplied by Vaughan's best friend the very annoying (but presumably supposed to be funny) Gary.

As a result a book that I was greatly enjoying in the first third had become irritating by the ending. It's hard not to wonder what a better novelist would have a achieved with it basic premise.

It's not dreadful just disappointing, I'd give it 2.5 starts if Amazon would let me.


Breakfast at Tiffany's  [1961] [Blu-ray] [Region Free]
Breakfast at Tiffany's [1961] [Blu-ray] [Region Free]
Dvd ~ Audrey Hepburn
Price: £7.10

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Captivating, 16 Nov. 2012
Quite how I got to my 50s without seeing this I don't know. But better late than never.

It's a captivating witty tale - pretty daring and adult for it's time. Hepburn is of course stunning and enchanting, Peppard a revelation for this like me who know him for his later action roles.

Yes it's dated badly in places, particularly the `comedy' Japanese neighbour.

But don't let that spoil your enjoyment, there are too many good things here.


Excel 2010 eLearning Kit For Dummies
Excel 2010 eLearning Kit For Dummies
by Faithe Wempen
Edition: Paperback
Price: £26.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly Poor, 9 Nov. 2012
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've bought quite a few Dummies book so had good expectations of this. However, I've not tried one of their eLearning kits before, this one was disappointing.

Elearning modules are I suspect very much a matter of personal taste, the ones supplied here are vary basic in the way they are put together. Clunky menus, synthesised voice. Probably not surprising given the price of the book. Personally I'd rather just work through the book. But there are problems doing that.

One of the basic things you would expect from this sort of book is sample files for each exercise, but the disk (and online content ) is missing some files while others are wrongly named. For instance try Lesson 5 on Tables and Lists and it tells you to open adresses.xlsx. It's not on the CD and it's not available in the online course.

Or Chapter 6 Exploring Financial functions tell you to open loans.xlsx and got to the PMT worksheet. But the file on the CD is called 'Chapter A07 Loans.xlsx' and the worksheet is called 'Payments'

The file for Lesson 10 is called 'Chapter A07 Errors.xlsx' etc. etc.

This really is pretty shoddy and makes it hard work to use the book.

It's a shame because I think the actual content of the book is up to Dummies usual standard, but I couldn't really recommend it to anyone.


The Lovely Bones [DVD] (2009)
The Lovely Bones [DVD] (2009)
Dvd ~ Mark Wahlberg
Offered by DVDBayFBA
Price: £3.94

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Muddled, 3 Nov. 2012
I'd not read the book this is based on so came to the film fresh.It's a slightly curious structure with what would normally be the main event - the murder of a teenage girl revealed right at the start.

Some ***SPOILERS*** in what follows

There are three main elements to it;
* The murder and the murderer
* The family adjusting to the death
* The dead girl observing, and sometimes influencing from the afterlife

I didn't think these worked very well together, in particular the mostly sugar coated fantasy afterlife scenes, while sometime visually stunning, jarred with the darker elements about the killer and the families pain.

Of the 3 strands the one about the serial killer worked least well for me. Partly I am bit bored with the modern obsession with serial killer bogeymen. But more so because I didn't find it convincing, he was to much the seedy loner. While his method - building an underground bunker in the middle of field next to a housing estate which nobody notices - was rather far-fetched.

There are some good elements Saorise Ronan is very good in the lead role, and supporting performances are good. The 70s feel is well re-created (though curiously without any contemporary music) and some of the fantasy elements are stunning.

But for me they didn't work together, that combined with some rather clunky story elements, partly I suspect due to squeezing in bits of the book resulted in the whole film being an unsatisfactory experience


Priceless [DVD] (2006)
Priceless [DVD] (2006)
Dvd ~ Audrey Tautou
Price: £3.35

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Has a certain je ne sais quoi, 25 Oct. 2012
This review is from: Priceless [DVD] (2006) (DVD)
Apparently inspired by Breakfast at Tiffanys this tail of gold-digging among the age rich in the south of France deals with a potentially seedy subject with with great charm. It's hard to imagine a Hollywood rom-com tackling the same subject matter. But Priceless bring a French maturity to the subject matter. the participants present as knowing adults who by and large make their own choices. Though in the end the gold-diggers are always at the mercy of those with the gold. For a 12 there are plenty of references to sex, even if it is never shown, it's clear what is going on.

It the charm of the 2 leads that makes the film Tatou in particular is charming and sexy, but with a hint of steel, Gad Elmaleh excellent as her more naive fiol.

If the ending is predictable and sugar coated, that doesn't matter the journey has been such a pleasure.


Anything Else [DVD] [2003]
Anything Else [DVD] [2003]
Dvd ~ Woody Allen

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Amusing, 25 Oct. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Anything Else [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
It's kind of hard not to damn this with faint praise. It's light and fairly funny, in many ways a return the the style of earlier films. With woody to old, Jason Biggs takes on the lead role and does a decent job of it. While woody turns in a supporting roles that is the highlight of the film. There is also great use of New York location shots. But for me it's not quite funny enough, the central performances not quite good enough.

OK way to spend an evening in front of the TV.


Killing Me Softly [2002] [DVD]
Killing Me Softly [2002] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Heather Graham
Offered by Bridge_Records
Price: £4.54

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A mess, 15 Oct. 2012
I've read some other Nicci French novel but not the one this is based on. They are generally well put together plot wise - so I can only assume the script writers are responsible for the mess here.

Too list all it's failing would only add to the time I have wasted on it, suffice to say that after the initial set up, where our protagonists meet and fall in love/lust there is a absence of any coherent story or plot or character development. It is as if the writers had once seen a thriller and vaguely remembered how one works. The farcical ending couldn't come soon enough for me.

On the plus side it looks good, and makes good use of London settings. Heather Graham is quite watchable (with and without clothes!) and generally makes the best of what the awful script throws at her. Joseph Fiennes though is horrendously hammy, the rest of the cast forgettable.

Avoid.


The Sense of an Ending
The Sense of an Ending
by Julian Barnes
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Engaging - but ultimately unfulfilling, 15 Oct. 2012
This review is from: The Sense of an Ending (Paperback)
Not much to add to what has already been said in many of the reviews.

It is beautifully written and engaging tale which I greatly enjoyed up until the last 30 or 40 pages when the absence of any sort of satisfactory ending let the whole thing down. I guess like the central character is repeatedly told I just 'didn't get it' but like him I felt deprived of the information necessary to 'get it'.

Another review said this feels more like a series of wise insights than a novel, and I'm inclined to agree. Well worth the read for it's prose and observations on life, but not for it's plot.


Aliens Vs Predator - Requiem [DVD] [2007]
Aliens Vs Predator - Requiem [DVD] [2007]
Dvd ~ Steven Pasquale
Offered by DVDBayFBA
Price: £3.18

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Unbelievably awful, 8 Oct. 2012
Rather to my own surprise I enjoyed the first AVP film so thought I'd give this a go, big mistake.

The basic promise isn't bad, crash landing ship, aliens let loose on a small town. But the execution is dreadful. It's failings are well rehearsed in other reviews but two stand out for me;

So much of it takes place in such darkness that it is hard to tell what is going on. My guess is this is to hide the lack of special effects budget. The Aliens when you do see them are so obviously blokes in suits that it is at times it's like a 1960s monster movie.

Secondly the absolute absence of plot or characterisation, Reiko Aylesworth is underused as the Ripleyesque soldier. As for the rest they are instantly forgettable.

While it has it's moments, the combination of not being able to see what is happening and not caring a jot about the `characters' makes for a very boring film.


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