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EllaGuru "rockcandyman" (West Yorkshire, England)

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47 Ronin / RIPD / Immortals [Blu-ray] [2011] [Region Free]
47 Ronin / RIPD / Immortals [Blu-ray] [2011] [Region Free]
Dvd ~ Keanu Reeves
Offered by HarriBella.UK.Ltd
Price: £34.43

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, good value 'instant 3D collection', 7 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
None of these movies has (or deserves) a reputation as a modern classic, but at the right price this set makes a very worthwhile addition to a 3D Blu Ray collection. (I paid £11 or so; at the time of writing it's in a '3 Box Sets for £24' deal!)

I bought this set (along with Hugo and Dredd, two other great value 3D titles) immediately upon upgrading from a DVD-based, 2D-only setup to a Blu Ray-based, 3D-capable setup, as a sort of instant 3D movie collection on a budget. As such it was a very good buy.

RIPD is a decent if rather by-the-numbers supernatural comedy that looks good in HD and 3D. Three stars.

Immortals is a very stylised affair with a distinctive, muted gold-and-brown colour palette and some oddly austere (digital) sets. As a story it's no more than OK, so how much you enjoy this will depend on how much the aesthetics appeal to you. I wasn't that keen, although the picture quality and use of 3D are both fine. Two stars.

The stand-out film for me was 47 Ronin, which really makes the most of its Japanese setting in visual terms. There's a real sense of scale and the beautiful and richly-coloured costumes, architecture/sets and landscapes look great. The story, like the setting, benefits from being relatively unfamiliar to a Western audience. Four stars.

The bonus star overall is for value relative to other 3D Blu Ray releases.

The Marx Brothers Collection - A Girl In Every Port/The Cocoanuts/Room Service/Love Happy [DVD]
The Marx Brothers Collection - A Girl In Every Port/The Cocoanuts/Room Service/Love Happy [DVD]
Dvd ~ The Marx Brothers

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not the best option, 8 Aug. 2009
Marx Brothers Boxset: A Girl in Every Port/The Cocoanuts/Love Happy/Room Service/Animal Crackers/Monkey Business/Horse Feathers/Duck Soup [DVD]

I'm sure I'm stating the obvious here, but it's actually cheaper to buy the 8-movie box set which includes these 4 films plus Duck Soup, Horse Feathers, Animal Crackers and Monkey Business. (I wanted to complete my collection and ended up having to buy those 4 films for a second time - grr!)

OPTOMA DV11 DVD Home Cinema DLP Projector
OPTOMA DV11 DVD Home Cinema DLP Projector

34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb all-in-one home cinema solution, 20 Feb. 2008
Just bought this projector a couple of days ago, and I have to say I'm extremely chuffed with it. In terms of picture and sound quality, I'm sure it doesn't compete with a £2000-plus home cinema system featuring a big HD TV, BluRay player and 5.1 speaker system all carefully positioned in an ideal viewing environment, but so what? For less than a quarter of that price - and probably less than a quarter of the hassle involved in planning your living room around that sort of set-up - you get something really pretty impressive.

Within 10 minutes of getting this projector delivered, I'd set it up on a coffee table, pointed it at a blank wall, and was watching Star Wars on a screen around four times the size of a 42" TV. OK, so it wasn't HD and I couldn't hear laser beams zapping around behind my head, but still, the sound was more than adequate even without the subwoofer - better than typical TV speakers I think, loud and clear and with decent bass - and the picture was bright, vivid and pretty much pin-sharp. DVDs haven't started looking rubbish just because something better has come along, and the resolution of this projector is perfectly suited to them. (Of course, as with any modern TV, you start to see the pixels if you get too close to the screen - but at the right distance the picture genuinely looked superb.)

A few things were worrying me before I bought this projector, so just in case the same things are worrying you I'll talk about them here. 1 - I was worried the fan noise would be a problem. It really isn't. It's just about audible in those rare ultra-quiet bits of a movie where there's no music or dialogue, but even then it's just a quiet hum - nothing like the loud whirr my computer fan gives off! 2 - I was worried the picture wouldn't be bright enough. Actually it's fine - better in a dark room, obviously, but certainly watchable in daylight with the curtains drawn. In fact, thinking about how much the reflections on a normal TV screen in daylight can spoil the picture, this really doen't count against the projector at all for me. 3 - I was worried it would be weird having the sound coming out of speakers in the projector just in front of me while the picture was on the other side of the room. Actually you soon forget about this - the sound fills the room quite nicely, and when you watch the screen, I think your brain quite naturally tricks you into thinking that's where the matching sound is coming from.

All in all I would recommend this to pretty much anyone for whom HD isn't the prime concern. It displays a great DVD-quality picture bigger than any TV could, and offers surprisingly beefy sound too - not to mention the convenience of being able to pack it away easily (it comes complete with a carry case) and take it to another room, a friend's house, on holiday etc. And for anyone who really IS bothered about HD, surround sound and all the rest of it - I would still strongly suggest that you think about the projector option in general rather than the TV option. Frankly I just don't see how even the largest TV could begin to compete with the sort of picture a projector can give you.

All in all a great purchase - I'm definitely going to enjoy rediscovering my DVD collection on the big screen!

The Taking
The Taking
by Dean Koontz
Edition: Paperback

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "Message" leaves a bad taste in the mouth, 23 Jan. 2007
This review is from: The Taking (Paperback)
I enjoyed most of this book for its nightmarish atmosphere, imaginative creatures and intriguing, "what's-really-going-on-here" plot. But right from the start, there's a slightly uncomfortable "Religious Right" feel to several passages (with Koontz griping about fence-sitters and peace-lovers, judicial leniency, etc.). By the end of the book, sure enough, he's making it clear that everything we've just witnessed - terror, violence, suffering and death on an unimaginable scale - is actually just what humanity needed to get rid of the all the dead wood and make the world a safer place for God-fearing, gun-toting all-American heroes. And supposedly this is a book about "hope"! Really rather unpleasant when you think about it.

Song Cycle
Song Cycle
Offered by themusicmerchant
Price: £29.97

4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Has 'cult' and 'masterpiece' written all over it, 16 Sept. 2002
This review is from: Song Cycle (Audio CD)
Poor old Van Dyke Parks. After his high-profile collaboration with Brian Wilson (as lyricist on the abortive Smile album), everything must have seemed to be going his way when Warners bankrolled his own ambitious, lavish and hugely expensive Song Cycle. Trouble was, it didn't sell. Why? I suppose simply because the cool kids wanted pop/rock music and this just wasn't a pop/rock album. Certainly there's a psychedelic flavour to the surreal lyrics and musical twists and turns, but in Van Dyke Parks' universe that experimental edge is applied not to rock and roll but to folk, showtunes, Tin Pan Alley - the songs America was singing before Elvis hit. The result is a truly unique album, containing some of the richest and most rewarding music of the sixties. Essential.

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