Profile for R. F. Stevens > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by R. F. Stevens
Top Reviewer Ranking: 21
Helpful Votes: 5992

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
R. F. Stevens "richard23491" (Ickenham UK)
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   

Show:  
Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20
pixel
The Longest Day [DVD] [1962]
The Longest Day [DVD] [1962]
Dvd ~ John Wayne
Offered by TwoRedSevens
Price: £11.08

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Maybe the most authentic D-Day film, 15 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Longest Day [DVD] [1962] (DVD)
Maybe the best Hollywood version of the D-Day landing, certainly the best researched and most accurate, with actual participants who had been there now acting in the film and advising. Some will argue the more recent productions such as Saving Private Ryan or Band of Brothers (both excellent) do it better cinematically, but for me this is still the best version.

I saw it for the first time on its initial release when several local senior schools had arranged special showings during the mornings at the local cinema. Most of our parents had been involved in D-Day one way or another so there was added significance. Although it is a B&W film some of my memories of that viewing are in colour, I guess because of the vivid impression it made on me allowing my mind to fill in the blanks, so to speak.

It is worth reading the Wiki entry for this film as it has a lot of interesting information about the star-studded cast and the multi-lingual production and who contributed to all the research and background.

This 60th Anniversary Edition comes on two DVDs and lasts for 168 minutes, and is clean sharp B&W shown in 2.35:1 wide-screen with excellent 5.1 surround sound. It has a booklet about D-Day and the making of the film and the extras include two documentaries about the film as well as the theatrical trailers.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 17, 2014 8:38 PM GMT


Dunkirk [DVD]
Dunkirk [DVD]
Dvd ~ John Mills
Offered by HalfpriceDVDS_FBA
Price: £13.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gritty drama that is also a documentary lest we forget, 15 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Dunkirk [DVD] (DVD)
Many people in the 21st Century will have forgotten the significance of Dunkirk, especially as most of those who survived it are no longer with us now. This film brings back to life the very real fears and the desperately inadequate and under-prepared state of Britain in those early months of WW2. My Uncle was shot down piloting a Blenheim just a few weeks before the evacuation, and many others of my generation will also have lost a relative who served in the BEF, so for us the film really does mean something.

Bearing in mind that it was shot in 1950 when the country was still in the grip of rationing and shortages it is remarkable what a good film it is and how little of it is simple morale boosting propaganda. The action scenes used a lot of real combat equipment and personnel recently redundant from the fighting, again something impossible now without resorting to CGI, and it is a genuine snapshot on what was possible and what was done.

And then there is the consummate acting. The cast list is stellar and all perform brilliantly, again because the very real memories were still there, many of them having lived through similar experiences only a few years earlier. One of the real tragedies of that war is that those I knew (including my parents) who had survived it refused to talk about it, so it is only through films like this that we can understand what they endured, and why they fought so valiantly.

The film lasts for 130minutes and is 4:3 aspect ratio in B&W with good image quality and with Mono sound.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 21, 2014 11:09 AM GMT


Queen Of Soul The Best of Aretha Franklin
Queen Of Soul The Best of Aretha Franklin
Offered by Direct Entertainment UK
Price: £5.74

4.0 out of 5 stars Aretha as we first heard her, 15 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is an excellent introduction to the songs of Aretha Franklin, with the majority of her most popular hits included in their original versions. Aretha is at her youthful very best, and the soulful emotion expressed in her songs is second to none.

However this also means that the audio quality is not quite as good as one might expect from a modern CD, but I prefer to hear the original that has not been cleaned up and re-processed because the authentic sound brings back all the memories of what we were doing when we first heard them.

There are other more complete collections which have been reprocessed, and if you are after the ultimate in completeness then go for this box set instead. But this CD is the one for me.


From The Reach
From The Reach
Price: £12.69

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Slide master, 15 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: From The Reach (Audio CD)
The excellent guitar and slide playing by Sonny Landreth is an inspiration to all budding guitarists, but few will ever match him.

I first heard a couple of these tracks on the Paul Jones show and bought the CD six years ago on the strength of them. The rest of the album is almost as good, and over the years since then hearing more of the detail I've grown to appreciate it more and more.

My initial rating would have been 4* but now it is a solid 5*.


Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy : Complete BBC Series [DVD] [1979]
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy : Complete BBC Series [DVD] [1979]
Dvd ~ Alec Guinness
Price: £7.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential classic BBC spy drama, 15 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Alec Guinness gives us an unforgettable performance as Le Carre's George Smiley. And then the supporting cast shine just as brightly in the murky firmament of Cold War espionage beautifully interpreted by the BBC production team.

Remember that this was mostly shot on grainy 16mm colour film in 4:3 and the sound will be in Mono, but these deficiencies are soon forgotten on a dark and cold wet winter's day when one is snugly wrapped up on the settee with a pot of tea and some biscuits and engrossed in the unfolding drama on the screen.

This set is definitely one for the DVD collection.


I Sing the Body Electric
I Sing the Body Electric
by Ray Bradbury
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'What If?' fiction written by a master of the short story, 14 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is an eclectic collection of 'What If?' short stories. Most are not hard SF, and in fact many might not be classed as SF or Fantasy at all, until one thinks about them a little bit more deeply to see just what the subtle twist is. Bear in mind that these were original ideas and fresh thinking when written in the late 1940s, 1950s and 1960s, and many of the concepts have been borrowed and enlarged upon by other authors since.

As always, Bradbury's writing is excellent and the pictures live on the inside of ones eyelids during the occasional momentary pause to savour the ideas. I was pleased to find this 1969/1970 collection only recently to help fill out the Bradbury section of my library, and while some of the stories have dated over the last half century or more, most of them still feel fresh.

In the list below I have added the dates for those which I have been able to identify as previously published elsewhere.

The Kilimanjaro Device
The Terrible Conflagration Up at the Place (1960)
Tomorrow's Child (1948)
The Women (1948)
The Inspired Chicken Motel
Downwind from Gettysburg
Yes, We'll Gather at the River
The Cold Wind and the Warm
Night Call, Collect (1949)
The Haunting of the New
I Sing the Body Electric! (1960)
The Tombling Day (1952)
Any Friend of Nicholas Nickleby's Is a Friend of Mine
Heavy-Set
The Man in the Rorschach Shirt
Henry the Ninth
The Lost City of Mars
Christus Apollo

Other collections of his well worth a look are
Dark Carnival (1947)
The Martian Chronicles (1950)
The Illustrated Man (1951)
The Golden Apples of the Sun (1953)
Later editions of these usually have added some more stories so it is worth checking what is in which.


Classic Sci-Fi Collection [DVD]
Classic Sci-Fi Collection [DVD]
Dvd ~ Margaret Sheridan

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic SF films from the 1950s, 14 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Some of the films here are very dated with obvious visual effects, but where they score is in having the original ideas and putting them on screen for the first time, and making the most of limited budgets in producing what were then very scary movies. There are seven films in this collection, mostly B&W and mostly 4:3 and mostly Mono.

They are films that all SF enthusiasts will want to have in their collection, and in most cases they have been restored to a very good standard. Some have relevant extras typically including Production Commentary, Trailer, Photos, cast lists, etc. The Invasion of the Body Snatchers has two versions, the later (1988) being a colourized extended version of the original Black and White (1956).

In the set are:
The Thing From Another World (1951), 4:3, B&W, Mono
It Came From Outer Space (1953), 4:3, B&W, Stereo
The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954), 4:3, B&W, Mono
Tarantula (1955), 4:3, B&W, Mono
This Island Earth (1955), 1.85:1, Colour,Mono
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), 5:3 letterbox, B&W, Mono
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1988), 4:3, Colourised, Mono
The Incredible Shrinking Man (1957), 16:9, B&W, Mono


Michael McIntyre - Live & Laughing [DVD]
Michael McIntyre - Live & Laughing [DVD]
Dvd ~ Michael Mcintyre
Offered by Factory Shop Deals
Price: £9.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Side-splittingly funny, 14 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
At his best, like in this DVD, Michael MacIntyre is one of the funniest and most entertaining observational comedians in Britain. The Amazon blurb is accurate.
This 2008 DVD is better than his later 2009 DVD because here he has mostly avoided the use of gratuitous expletives and yet he is still side-splittingly funny.


Michael McIntyre Live 2009: Hello Wembley! [DVD]
Michael McIntyre Live 2009: Hello Wembley! [DVD]
Dvd ~ Michael McIntyre
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.74

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Funny Man is back again, 14 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Brilliantly funny as one might expect from MM, but I was disappointed that it is let down by just a few too many gratuitous swear words. His 2008 DVD is much better in this respect.


Edge Of Darkness - The Complete Series [1985] [DVD]
Edge Of Darkness - The Complete Series [1985] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Bob Peck
Price: £5.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Atmospheric, moody, political, scary., 14 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
An outstanding TV series when this political thriller was first aired, this newer remaster fully restored to how it should be with nothing missing is so good one can see the grain of the 16mm 4:3 film it was originally shot on.

But we soon forget the weakness of the film medium as the story grips us, and Bob Peck, Joanne Whalley and Joe Don Baker convince us that the world is a darker place, but there are just a few people determined to put things right - at all costs. The music from Kamen and Clapton is amazingly appropriate and helps to set the atmosphere.

This is one of my favourite TV series, being quite unique. For all we know this sort of scenario might well be played out in reality some time soon. The Az blurb is accurate and to the point. If you don't already have a copy in your DVD collection then now is a good time to add to it.


Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20