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Julian (Stamford)

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RECARO Young Sport Group 1/2/3 Combination Car Seat (Saphir)
RECARO Young Sport Group 1/2/3 Combination Car Seat (Saphir)
Price: £165.00

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for the Ford ST, 22 Mar. 2014
Having a car that already has Recaro seats (and in blue) this was an absolute no brainer to buy this for my son as he had soon grown out of his former seat/carrier at an astonishingly quick rate.
Yes , there are cheaper seats to buy and probably just as practical , but this little beauty hasn't put a foot wrong so far and like the adult Recaro seats in my car , this wraps around and snuggly holds your child in position.
The seat will also adapt to your child's growth , as the padding can either slide upwards or be completely removed as they grow , so this will last you for a very long time... and for the materialistic people amongst us (lets face it , why else would you buy this model) the Recaro logo can clearly be seen through the side window for all to see... Hey, its not just me.
I have read in one review about the clips being a bit "too fiddly" and said it was probably down to him being left handed... I can assure you , i'm right handed and they're STILL fiddly , but then , so are most clips on these types of things.
I've done a few long journeys with this and my son sits quite happily and comfortably for the whole journey and really can't find any fault with this product apart from the price , as this is twice the price as most other car seats , but if you want the best , then you have to pay for it I'm afraid , but well worth the money in my view.

Chronicles of Riddick [Blu-ray][Region Free]
Chronicles of Riddick [Blu-ray][Region Free]
Dvd ~ Vin Diesel
Price: £5.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pretty potent for a Diesel, 25 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Having just bought the most recent film in the trilogy (simply called Riddick) I felt it was long overdue to upgrade the rest of the films in this franchise to Blu-ray.
When I found out that there was going to be a sequel to Pitch Black , I couldn't be happier. Even better , both Vin Diesel and director David Twohy were back in the saddle , so how could it possibly go wrong ?
For me , absolutely nothing ! It was excellent ! A thoroughly enjoyable popcorn sci-fi/action movie , but then I read the scathing reviews on how bad it was (mainly because there were no monsters to stab at) but I truly disagree as this just opened up the whole Riddick universe and makes the trilogy far more interesting than just a "Hack & Slash" series of movies.
Don't get me wrong , I'll take toothy monsters over an invading army any day , but I'm glad they didn't just rehash the same story as Pitch Black by using any excuse for Riddick to see in the dark , which was barely touched on in this film and the only thing that bothered me about this was the PG:13 rating it got compared to the R-rated Pitch Black , so you knew it was going to be a softer affair.
Even though the third instalment isn't a complete rip off of the first one , there is a lot of elements from it that doesn't quite make that film original... Still , very enjoyable enough for me to buy it , although I did hope that bounty hunter ,Toombs (played by Nick Chinlund) would have returned or had some kind of spin off movie of his own as I found him quite an enjoyable character... As slimy as he was.

Visually this Blu-ray is superb , flawless , excellent , absolutely top notch and couldn't be happier with the picture quality.
The same can be said for the 5.1 DTS master audio which really does test your AV receiver to the absolute max.
As for the extras , like Pitch Black there's nothing really to shout about from what you got on DVD.
There is a picture-in-picture behind the scenes feature that you now get along with a couple of other additions (U-Control for e.g.) but for £7 this is excellent value and very worthy of an upgrade.

Pitch Black [Blu-ray][Region Free]
Pitch Black [Blu-ray][Region Free]
Dvd ~ Vin Diesel
Price: £2.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pitch Perfect !, 24 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Having just bought the most recent film in the trilogy (simply called Riddick) I felt it was long overdue to upgrade the rest of the films in this franchise to Blu-ray.
I remember getting Pitch Black on US import DVD about 5 weeks before it was due out at the cinema here in the UK (almost a year before the UK DVD release) due to a February cinematic release in the US compared to an October release here , and it was a directors cut no less , but sadly , those days of getting movies weeks before their actual UK cinema release are long gone , as nearly all movies on DVD/Blu-ray in the US are now released at the same time (give or take) as the UK , so I find there is little point buying imports anymore.

This is arguably the film that launched Vin Diesel's career and , with what I thought was an excellent sequel that followed (apparently the critics didn't liked it) , it didn't just rehash the same storyline like so many sequels do , it completely opened up the Riddick universe and was turning out to be an excellent franchise.
As for the most recent instalment in the franchise , its fair to say the story has gone back to the first film , but still enjoyable enough... I'm not a big fan of Vin Diesel movies , but I do like his Riddick franchise which he has made his own and I could quite happily sit and watch all 3 movies in one sitting , and rumour has it , he's signed up to do more.

Visually the Blu-ray transfer is excellent. The scene where Riddick is chained up after the death of Zeke , the detail on his hair (what little there is) is quite remarkable. Even the alien creatures , which looked rather flat on the original DVD , gain incredible detail.
The contrast of going from having 2 suns to all out darkness , the black levels are solid and don't suffer the jerkiness that the DVD suffered from.
The sound is in 5.1 DTS master audio and is quit impressive given the low budget of this film , and the opening crash sequence is definitely one for the sound demo-ests out there with a decent audio setup... Although the best sound demo ever that still ranks No:1 for me is , Star Wars: A New Hope and the shutting down (or whining down) of the sub-light engines on the Millennium Falcon on its approach to the destroyed planet of Alderaan... It just can't be beat !

The extras are ok , but nothing really to shout about from what you got on DVD. There is a picture-in-picture behind the scenes feature that you now get along with a couple of other additions (U-Control for e.g.) but for £7 this is excellent value and very worthy of an upgrade.

Breaking Bad: The Complete Series [Blu-ray]
Breaking Bad: The Complete Series [Blu-ray]
Dvd ~ Bryan Cranston
Price: £55.00

17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blue-meth on Blu-ray, 13 Jan. 2014
So , this was voted in America as the greatest TV show ever made... Well , that's down to individual taste I suppose , but I do have to say this is the best thing I've seen in a very long while.
This being shown only on Netflix , I never got to see it when originally broadcast and was surprised to learn that this has been going since 2008 , so I'm a relative newcomer watching all 5 seasons in a couple of huge marathons throughout November/December of last year... This is not a show where you can just watch one episode in a sitting !

I'm glad that a spin off series of Saul Goodman (derived from the words "Its all good man") along with hit man Mike (Jonathan Banks) will be available come this November under the title "Better call Saul" as they're some of my favourite characters throughout the show , although NOTHING beats the wrinkled , gurning grimace on the face of wheelchair bound Tio Salamanca (played by the brilliant Mark Margolis) on his final appearance...Now THATS a face!!!!
At £70 this is quite expensive for a TV show with only 5 seasons and I'm sure it won't be too long before this drops dramatically in price , but its a refreshing change that they haven't just unnecessarily dragged out this show like they do with so many others that go up to 9 or 10 seasons as this really does end at the perfect time.
All in all this really is one box set you must own.

Is this the best TV show ever ?...Pretty close!

Star Wars Darth Vader 31in Big Figure
Star Wars Darth Vader 31in Big Figure
Price: £28.00

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Impressive... Most impressive!, 8 Dec. 2013
= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:1.0 out of 5 stars 
I'm not going mince my words here , but this thing is BIG ! HUGE ! MAHOOSIVE !
I have bought this for my son for Xmas and this thing is going to tower over him. Yes , it does say on the box 3 years and up and my son who is not quite there yet (as my wife kindly pointed out) , but I would have killed for something like this when I was his age , which is probably why I bought it as it brought out the big kid in me , but for £19.99 its an absolute bargain , although the price does seemed to have increased substantially since I bought it !
There is also a Batman and Superman (Man of Steel version, i.e: pantless) which are the same size and I will no doubt buy for myself... I mean , buy for my sons birthday!
The articulation of this is not great I'll admit , and its more like the original Star Wars action figures that you used to buy way back when , just on a giant scale. Saying that , this is a real treat for kids (and dads) out there compared to some of the rubbish you can buy , and the detailing is superb.
It could have done with a voice box or some flashing lights but don't let that put you off... Fewer batteries to buy or scavenge for on the big day and as any parent will tell you , the quieter the toy , the better !
If you can put up with hearing "I have you now!" for the 100th time within 5 minutes then there is a deluxe version with all the bells and whistles for a bit more cash.
Personally , you can't go wrong with this one.

James Bond - 22 Film Collection [Blu-ray] [1962]
James Bond - 22 Film Collection [Blu-ray] [1962]
Dvd ~ Sean Connery
Price: £88.36

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Looking good at 50 !, 26 May 2013
There are few film characters in the world that movie fans would be willing to watch 23 times as most decent movie franchises fizzle out after 3 or 4 films , but James Bond is one of the very few exceptions where every new release is still a huge box office draw and the level of secrecy surrounding a new Bond movie , along with all the glitz and pomp that goes into promoting these films is pretty hard to match , and doesn't fall under that category of films (e.g Saw, Final Destination , Fast and the Furious) who seem to churn out a movie every fortnight that quite literally milks a franchise for every last drop.

I'm not going to get into an argument on "Who is the best Bond ?" as people tend to like the one they grew up with , Sir Roger Moore for me (who's name is a Bond statement in itself) , but I do feel its unfair of people who slate George Lazenby , who in my view is a very underrated Bond and I'm sure if he'd done a few more films , he would have been excepted as a decent Bond.
As much as I thought Pierce Brosnan was an excellent choice for the role , unfortunately (with the exception of Goldeneye) , I felt his stint at the job was mired by poor scripts , cringeable product placements and over the top gadgets (an invisible car for crying out loud , although saying that , Roger Moore's hovercraft gondola left me scratching my head !) and Brosnan's inability to pull off (ooh er misses) a double entendre as good as Connery or Moore , Bond really fell by the wayside by the end of his run.
The incredible dim wittedness from the studio of having Madonna (Or the "Kiss of death" for a movie) was the final nail in the coffin for him and Bond was in desperate need of revamping.
With the arrival of Mr Craig who , lets face it , nobody thought would be any good after his slating in the press before a single frame was filmed , has turned out to be an excellent Bond and with a breath of fresh air pumped into the scripts has made him more of a "Grounded" Bond with virtually no gadgets (people still divided on that) and relying on his wits alone , Casino Royale was the best Bond to come out in years... He did wobble a bit with Quantum of Solace (which is a film title I still think would have been better suited to a Harry Potter or Indiana Jones movie) , but Skyfall has placed him right back where he belongs.

So, onto this box set. Because the contents of this box set are far too much to go into any real detail for just one review , this will just be an overview of the whole thing.
I have to say that I was a little reluctant to replace my DVD box set in where all the cover spines made the 007 logo , it dominated the shelf space in my collection , but this new Blu-ray box set is a handsome beast and inside you have two book-like containers that hold two discs per page (these are split between movies made from 1962-1981 and 1983-2008) 24 slots for the 22 films , a bonus disc of extras and one empty slot for the release of Skyfall.
Sadly , the new bonus disc contains mostly duff montages and probably wasn't worth adding , but the best of them is the one hour string of every Bond title sequences along with their theme songs , which does make good viewing , but the rest of the extras that accompany the films you will have already seen if you owned them previously , so somewhat disappointing , and my Casino Royale Deluxe version on Blu-ray that I already own does contain more extras than the one you get in this set.

The picture quality is fantastic , particularly on the older Connery films and surprisingly its some of the newer films (Goldeneye , The World is not Enough) that suffer slightly with the quality , but nothing really to get worried about , but overall a good transfer with them all.
The sound has 5.1 DTS master audio , although its the films from Goldeneye onwards that are the ones that really benefit from this , but the new remixes of the older films are nothing to be sniffed at when it comes to the audio and they have done a pretty good job in giving you a modern 5.1 sound with them.

As big of a Bond fan that I am, I'm not going to just give this 5 stars as I feel this box set isn't quite perfect , but at £90 (or roughly £4 per film) , this really is a bargain , and although it was nice of them to give you an extra slot for Skyfall , you're still going to have the same old problem of where to put Bond 24/25/26 and so on when they come out.
All in all this is a very worthy upgrade and think you'll be very impressed with the older films.

Star Trek: The Original Series - The Full Journey [Blu-ray] [1966] [Region Free]
Star Trek: The Original Series - The Full Journey [Blu-ray] [1966] [Region Free]
Dvd ~ William Shatner
Price: £73.56

41 of 49 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Its about time , MISTER!, 10 April 2013
Its taken me a long while to get around to buying this box set , as when I first heard (a few years ago now) that Star Trek: The Original Series would be undergoing a Star Wars style complete digital makeover , in which all its main special effects would be replaced with CGI , it was like having burning hot pokers rammed through my eyes at the very mention of it , so I refused to have anything to do with them (let alone buy them) out of my pure hatred for Lucas starting this god awful trend.

The thought of Paramount doing a "Lucas" on this beloved show was almost too much to bare and thought it was the "datedness" of the show that is a big part of the charm and appeal of the original series.
The miniskirts, crazy costumes, wobbly sets , obvious stunt doubles with no effort to hide the fact and OTT theatrical acting really are all things to cherish , along with the dodgy space FX.
A few years past and I'd completely forgotten all about them , but when channel flicking a couple of months ago , I came across an episode of 'The Doomsday Machine' on CBS Action and had no idea it would be these updated versions , and as I watched the new CGI unfold in front of me , I actually started to think "This is bloody brilliant" and it completely won me over in a matter of minutes and set the series link on my Skybox immediately.

It makes you wonder how on Earth Lucas could get it SO WRONG and yet this so right , and completely blame him for putting me off any kind of "special editions" which made me miss out on these for such a long time , due to his appalling attempts at fiddling/faffing/poking and tweaking with his own classic films and truly deserves a "Kirk style" chop to the back of the neck for being such a git!!!!... George , I'm laughing at the superior CGI !
Have viewed all 79 episodes and didn't find a single thing offensive at all. Even the iconic theme tune has been completely redone using the original Alexander Courage sheet music to produce an almost perfect copy and think whoever did the work on this was obviously a big fan and didn't want to upset anyone , and if anything , deserves congratulating... Maybe Lucas should have hired this guy ?

The CGI has been made to look like it was special FX from the 60's , but with a slight modern twist and really blends in quite well and hasn't just been "shoehorned in" for the sake of it like Star Wars... Don't get me wrong , I love Star Wars more than most , but Lucas and Star Wars these days is like David Beckham and tattoos , i.e: he just cant stop adding more and more until you end up with something truly quite repugnant !!!!
It could have been so tempting to go all out by giving us nice new modern special FX and truly ruined something quite special , so extremely glad they managed to restrain themselves and do only what was necessary... Birthday was coming up , so hinted (very loudly) to my wife what I wanted.
The picture quality is gorgeous and astonishingly , the sound has been given a 7.1 remastering , which may seem like overkill on a 60's TV show , but it sounds pleasant enough on my 7.1 setup , so more than happy.
You also get the original versions (YOU HEAR THAT , LUCAS!) if you want to view them , and can even flip from one to the other at the touch of a button if you want to compare old FX for new , so it really is the best of both worlds (no pun intended).
Extras are good , but nothing really to shout about from what you got from previous releases.

The box it comes in could have been better and I have read a lot of complaints about it , but not really had any major issues with it myself , but I am starting to wish I'd asked for the individual series instead , which comes in proper boxes and is a little more expensive (Hey , I wasn't paying) , but I'm considering swapping all the discs into my old Star Trek DVD yellow/blue/red plastic boxes that I also have , which is a much better looking and sturdier box to hold them in and seems a shame not to use or keep them , but overall its a good box set to own... Not perfect , but good enough and very well priced.

You do hear people complain that its too much money on Blu-ray , but these have never been cheaper to own all 79 episodes upon release.. VHS would have cost you more than 4 times as much back in the day to own them all. Even the DVD would have cost you £150 (at the time of release) to have all three seasons and you wouldn't have gotten 2 versions/extras/Hi-def picture and 7.1 sound with them either...MISTER !
Comment Comments (5) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 28, 2013 6:55 AM GMT

Die Hard Quadrilogy (with Bonus Disc) [Blu-ray] [1988]
Die Hard Quadrilogy (with Bonus Disc) [Blu-ray] [1988]
Dvd ~ Bruce Willis
Price: £17.88

22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Blu-ray 25th Anniversary is an Ode to disappointment !, 1 Feb. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Finally ! I've been waiting forever for a proper Blu-ray box set of these films to come along and have been toying with the idea of buying them individually for ages , but always knew a box set was on the horizon so held out.
Yes , I know I could have waited until all five movies were available to buy in one neat box set , but couldn't resist this 25th Anniversary Blu-ray set thats available now... I've waited too long !

Whats left to say about the Die Hard movies that hasn't already been said ?
I won't bore the pants off you by rehashing opinions on how Alan Rickman is the greatest onscreen villain ever (YES , he should have gotten away with it !) or Robert Davi's line about Saigon being the greatest line ever shouted and that the first Die Hard is without doubt the best of the bunch , as you know this already , so will concentrate on telling you about the Blu-ray quality that you get and whether its worthy of the upgrade.

For the first 3 films picture quality is good and much better than its DVD versions , BUT... You still get the feeling its not as good as they could have gotten them and could do with a further polish.
The audio transfer is acceptable and certainly not the worst I've heard , but its far from the best.
Die Hard 4.0 being relatively new compared to the others , has a flawless picture and sound.

As for the bonus disc "Decoding Die Hard" this is a brilliant addition , with new interviews with actors/directors/writers (Rickman and McTiernan are the real highlights) and Hart Bochner (who appears not to have aged a day) is a real treat , although weird without the beard , and looking at every aspect of all the films , but at a little over an hour and a half to cover all 4 films , this could and SHOULD have been twice as long.
When you have a distinguished actor (who rarely gives interviews) like Mr Rickman sat right in front of you ready to talk about his role as Hans Gruber , you really should milk it for all its worth and I'm fairly certain you're only getting a tiny fraction of footage that was filmed in these new interviews.

The films are of course great viewing and I like them all (DH2 not so much) , but all in all , this is NOT a very good presentation for a "milestone" box set , and when it comes to the picture/sound quality and extras , all the films really are just previous releases "tagged" together and even has trailers for old cinema releases on DH3 , which for me is an absolute no no when buying a box set , especially an Anniversary Edition.
Its a shame they didn't do a proper fold out box with an extra slot for the fifth film like they did on the 50th Anniversary Bond Blu-ray box set for the arrival of Skyfall...that would have at least told me someone cared.

I'm glad I now own these great movies on Blu-ray and is definitely worthy of an upgrade from DVD , but can't help but feel this was a wasted and missed opportunity here being the 25th Anniversary and was expecting just a little more effort than this.
There seems to be a real lack of any kind of work done here and I may as well have just bought them individually years ago and its only the bonus disc that really makes this box set worth having... Still , this hasn't cost me anything more than it would buying them separately , so I've not lost out.
If I'd bought these separately , I would have given 4 stars each for the quality , but this presentation for a "All New 25th Anniversary Box Set" is a real let down and a bit of a copout with only new sleeve covers and a bonus disc to shout about , so have decided its only worth 3 stars for making me feel so disappointed.

When I look at the other "milestone" box sets that I own on Blu-ray (Alien , Blade Runner , Indiana Jones , Bond) you just feel that no effort has been made whatsoever with this , and all that was needed was a proper overhaul/remastering of the first 3 films and a decent box... Just something different that stands out from whats already been available for a few years now , and would quite happily pay a bit more for it (as I'm sure most people would) if the work had been done.

So for those of you who are going to wait for the fifth instalment (which I've not seen yet , so can't comment) in a nice shiny box set , just hope they do an updated remastering of the first 3 before you buy , as I have a feeling that it will be just "tagged on" with this already available box set.
If you're as impatient as me and want this now , this isn't the worst box set you can get and its better than some I could mention , but given the hindsight on this , I'd try and wait a little longer until this drops to around £15.
Comment Comments (10) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 14, 2014 6:41 AM GMT

London 2012 Olympic Games  [Blu-ray]
London 2012 Olympic Games [Blu-ray]
Dvd ~ Kenneth Branagh
Offered by MediaMerchants
Price: £4.31

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best Xmas gift, 29 Dec. 2012
I gonna be honest...I was one of the many sceptical people who moaned about the Olympic Games before it all started.
I'm NOT a sport lover by any means and the thought of two weeks of nothing but sport on TV always fills me with dread.
I even avoided walking 500 yards to see the torch being taken through my hometown of Stamford.
How wrong I was... If it hadn't been for my wife insisting on watching the opening ceremony , I would have missed it all , and now feel guilty for being such a pessimist about the whole thing.

This was just fantastic and found myself watching EVERYTHING , even sports I'd never contemplate watching and just couldn't get enough and was absolutely gutted when it all finished , and when asked 'what do you want for Xmas' this was the first thing on my list.
Think what I enjoyed most about the whole thing was the level of support from the crowds , not just to our Team GB but to everyone involved and the level of "fair play" really makes this a joy to watch , which is probably why I don't like watching football; which is the only sport that I know of where the object of the game seems to be how much you can cheat before being caught (Tom Daley is a mere amateur compared to some of these footballers diving ability!) or to see how much you can insult the opposing team by the fans.

Hats off to Danny Boyle for pulling off quite possibly the best opening/closing ceremony EVER and never felt more proud to be British , and the Queen can now add the best accolade of her life with becoming a Bond girl.
Let us not forget Thomas Heatherwick who gave me the biggest surprise of all. This was the man who designed the Olympic cauldron and upon seeing it , my first thought was "Who in the hell designed that rubbish?"... This was of course before it all came together and I actually thought that it was going to remain open and just thought it was some "artsy fartsy" modern look to the Olympic flame , but when the flames rose to produce the classic Olympic cauldron shape , my jaw was touching the floor , so went from disappointment to absolute awe in a matter of seconds...Not to mention extra helpings of humble pie!

No one ever likes to be proven wrong , but on this occasion , I'm glad that I was with these games and on so many levels.
I completely regret not going to see a once in a lifetime opportunity of seeing the torch being paraded through my hometown , and if I could go back in time , I would even have ordered some tickets to any of the events , as these games really have changed my mind about watching sport... although I do feel I'll never capture that feeling again that I had with London 2012 , but I wont be such a misery guts about it next time.

Ocean's Trilogy [Blu-ray] [2007] [Region Free]
Ocean's Trilogy [Blu-ray] [2007] [Region Free]
Dvd ~ George Clooney
Price: £13.85

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Ocean's box set is a steal!, 6 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
With so many Blu-ray trilogy box sets at knock down prices , Spider-Man , Jurassic Park , The Matrix , Back to the Future , Bourne and now this all under the £10 mark , its unfair to say anything bad about them.

If I'd paid top price for this when first released , I would have plenty to say about the picture and sound quality. These will certainly NOT be in anyones top five for quality level (or top 10 for that matter) , so I'll just say that the picture and sound are....fair for £10!
Which is me being MORE than fair, I have to say!
With the exception of the "WTF!" moment of Julia Roberts playing Julia Roberts in Ocean's 12 , this would have been a perfect little trilogy , but honestly , for this sort of price , you just can't complain.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 28, 2013 5:59 PM BST

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