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Col William Russell (ret) (Springfield, VA)

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Hyde Park on Hudson [DVD]
Hyde Park on Hudson [DVD]
Dvd ~ Bill Murray
Price: £2.99

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars absolute rubbish both writing and "acting", 30 Mar. 2015
This review is from: Hyde Park on Hudson [DVD] (DVD)
The plot is rubbish and was probably written by a school kid. The worst part is Bill Murray. One, he thinks he can act (he can't) and, two, he gives the worst performance of FDR in cinematic history. Avoid this piece of garbage.


William Shakespeare: A Popular Life
William Shakespeare: A Popular Life
by Gary O'Connor
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £18.10

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Too many errors to be taken seriously, 29 Mar. 2015
Any Shakespeare fan knows that there is little actually known of Shakespeare's life so any biography is conjecture. But the conjecture can only be taken seriously if the author has done his homework. This book is so full of historical errors that there's no reason to believe his conjecture. For example, on page 49, he makes the big error of telling readers that Mary, Queen of Scots, (Mary Stuart or Mary I of Scotland), was the half-sister of Queen Elizabeth I. Wrong! Elizabeth's half-sister was Mary I of England (reigned 1553-58). Didn't he bother checking this simple fact? Obviously not. During that part he keeps calling them "sisters". He also has Philip of Spain marrying Mary, Queen of Scots. Again, wrong! He married the English queen, Mary I, in 1556. A easy confusion but not if someone is writing it as fact and they should check facts. He also (p 55) has the English not following up on the defeat of the Spanish armada. Why should they? The Spanish invasion was stopped and there was no reason to transport troops to Spain for an invasion. England was having enough trouble with France just across the Channel! So with such errors (that would have taken only a few minutes to check) O'Connor's conjecture cannot be taken seriously and this book consigned to the trash bin.


Bize - Karmen - Vera Davydova (2 CD Set)
Bize - Karmen - Vera Davydova (2 CD Set)
Offered by TOP-MUSIC-UK
Price: £15.99

5.0 out of 5 stars a fine performance that should be better known, 28 Mar. 2015
Here is an excellent recording of Bizet's much-recorded opera. Many Western collectors will bypass this because of the singers not being well-known in the West. These were top performers at the Bolshoi at the time and Melik-Pasheyev was one of their finest conductors who conducts a no-holds-barred performance full of fire and drive. the sound is clear and well-focused. Melik-Pasheyev also makes some interesting additions to the final act by including music from other Bizet works.The one note is that the date given in 1937. Other discographies give the date of recording as 1949 which is far more believeable given the sound quality. The label, Aquariqus, is a fine label that publishes excellent recordings, saving many Melodiya recordings from oblivion.


Fury [DVD]
Fury [DVD]
Dvd ~ Brad Pitt
Price: £6.99

13 of 18 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars absolute rubbish, 5 Mar. 2015
This review is from: Fury [DVD] (DVD)
This is a piece of absolute rubbish. Badly acted and even worse direction. Very tedious and plodding. I thought the John Wayne style days were gone when one fighting vehicle (tank, plane, whatever) could win the war. The last third of this boring movie has a disabled American tank holding off an entire German platoon. And did the director even bother watching the scenes? No. When the Germans were marching every other one had a panzerfaust (the German bazooka) BUT when they came upon the tank, not one was seen. Then the Germans only attacked from the front - with machine guns! Every time Pitt or another of the Amercans fired a shot, every shot killed a German. Great marksmanship, huh? The only good part of the film was seeing a real German Tiger in action (thanks to the Tank Museum in Wool). I'm amazed that there were so many idiots who gave this rubbish 5 stars!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 7, 2015 3:59 PM GMT


Herbert von Karajan: The Complete 1960s
Herbert von Karajan: The Complete 1960s
Price: £165.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a remarkable set for a remarkable conductor at his peak, 21 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a marvelous original jackets collection of von Karajan's 1960s DG recordings which show the maestro at his interpretive peak before his fixation on precision robbed the music of its flow and passion. The presentation is excellent but even more so is the rich, remastered sound. One place where this presentation excels is that the thick book here has pages at the end of what musical selections are on which CD, something DG failed to do in the 1970s box. This set is listed as a "limited edition" and I don't know whether that's true or an ad gimmick so I recommend grabbing one while they're available.


Karajan - 70s (DG box set)
Karajan - 70s (DG box set)
Price: £179.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a worthy addition to your collection, 17 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
These are von Karajan's last great recordings before he became so fixated on sound over musicality in his 1980s recordings. Here we have his first Mahler recordings as wll as another Beethoven cycle (I still prefer the 1963 cycle even tho this is still better than anything to have been recorded since then). My quibbles are two. One is that DG didn't include an index in the thick book included. It would have been easy to have included one or two pages showing what composition is on which CD(s). Two, is that the single jackets have the liner notes reproduced but the double jackets do not. Anyway, I recommend adding this set while it's still available.


Eugen Jochum conducts The Symphonies of Beethoven, Brahms & Bruckner
Eugen Jochum conducts The Symphonies of Beethoven, Brahms & Bruckner
Price: £90.15

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a superb set, 17 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I'll admit that I've been a bit prejudiced against Jochum due to his poorly-conducted DIE MESTERSINGER set. However, such is not the case here with strong recordings of the Beethoven Brahms, and Bruckner cycles that are marvelous in every way. Grab this before it disappears and greedy buggers are wanting high prices for it.


Mozart Opera Festival
Mozart Opera Festival
Price: £10.83

5.0 out of 5 stars a fine set worth having before it's gone again, 17 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Mozart Opera Festival (Audio CD)
I remember having this LP set many years ago and enjoying it then. The choice of arias is rather strange but the singing and conducting are strong. Grab this before it disappears again.


The Fifth Musketeer [Region 2] [Dutch import]
The Fifth Musketeer [Region 2] [Dutch import]
Dvd ~ Sylvia Kristel
Offered by MMRSALES
Price: £10.00

4.0 out of 5 stars not a great film but an enjoyable one well worth owning in the right version, 17 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Get the Dutch import as it's the only complete version. This isn't a strong version of "The Man in the Iron Mask" but could have been with a better director. However, it's still worth watching and enjoying but, again, do not get a British or American version as all the ones I've seen make too many cuts. This one is worth searching out.


Wagner: Der Fliegende Holländer
Wagner: Der Fliegende Holländer
Price: £5.99

1.0 out of 5 stars a recording sabotaged by a declining lead and an inadequate conductor., 17 Jan. 2015
This set is one of the worst recordings of this opera ever to have been recorded. George London was a great Dutchman. However, when he came to record this set he was showing vocal deterioration that soon ended his career. But even worse is Dorati's weak conducting. There's no mystery, fear, or power in his reading. This might as well have been a rehearsal. Do yourself a favor and ignore this travesty. Get any one of London's earlier performances to see what this is missing. Those also have much stronger conductors.


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