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Resident Evil: Retribution (DVD + UV Copy) [2012]
Resident Evil: Retribution (DVD + UV Copy) [2012]
Dvd ~ Milla Jovovich
Price: £5.00

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Adequate but found myself pawing the Select button..., 2 April 2013
Spoilers

If you've played any of the Resident Evil games, you'll know that there are a fair few moments where you want to hit the select button to skip a cutscene. I had much the same feeling watching this film.

The movie revisits some of the concepts and backdrops used in the previous films, with mixed results. Whilst it's great to see a few familiar faces, most of the characters feel like afterthoughts, or the product of a fanboy's attempt at fiction. Hey, wouldn't it be cool if...? Nice to see Ada Wong in the flesh, plus the return of a few of the Hive team from the original film, but other much anticipated favourites like Leon Kennedy fell way short of the mark.

I think Anderson did a reasonable job of the first film, but I get the impression he is now so captivated by his muse Milla that he has completely lost perspective on what makes for a talented director. Don't get me wrong, I can see why guys enjoy watching her, but how about a half decent script, story, and a serious look at editing alongside Alice? Anderson's style is as subtle as a brick. I didn't need a ten minute bathroom break whilst a computer generated face explained the lousy plot of the film. The only thing missing was a roundup from Columbo at the end.

But...it's still kind of fun. It just could have been so much better in the hands of a different director...still, I guess they're hardly rushing to make zombie films, so I shouldn't complain...


The Reluctant Fundamentalist
The Reluctant Fundamentalist

0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Lovely writing but lousy plot (contains SPOILERS), 24 Mar 2013
This review is from: The Reluctant Fundamentalist
I realise that I may be alone in my thoughts on this book, but I hope that my review will help potential buyers to look elsewhere for more deserving reads, especially with a film on the horizon.

I found Hamid's style to be both beguiling and lyrical. However, take that away and you have a rather shallow and dull plot, whose characters make little sense. If you are hoping to gain an insight into the mind of the type of fundamentalist who might, for various reasons, resort to terrorism, then you should look elsewhere. There are no intelligent insights in this book. The reasons given for the main character's journey from innocent student to terrorist are extremely unlikely, even if you suspend logic. What about the role of the media (or lack of it), unemployment and poverty, perceived or genuine encroachment on cultural and religious values, ignorance, loss of identity, differences in beliefs etc. This book fails to tackle any of these themes.

There are far better books than this rather contrived nonsense.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 23, 2014 1:12 PM GMT


Dark Matter
Dark Matter
by Michelle Paver
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.74

5.0 out of 5 stars The bear post, 3 Mar 2013
This review is from: Dark Matter (Paperback)
A horror that horrifies: a rare find indeed. Any reader who prefers the suspense and dread of the better known Japanese horror films to the mindless slasher and gore flics will love this book. As a fan of the horror genre I did at one point think that I had become de-sensitised to the thrills and spills that authors and directors contrive to throw at us. I was very pleased to discover that I was wrong. This book is a masterpiece in suspense. It plays on a very basic fear; that nagging suspicion that there is something or someone, just out of eyeshot, that is moving that little bit closer whenever we turn our backs...a beautifully rendered tale where the frozen wastelands play host to the most chilling of events.


Aliens Colonial Marines - Limited Edition (Xbox 360)
Aliens Colonial Marines - Limited Edition (Xbox 360)
Price: £3.85

13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Apparently, she saw an alien once..., 23 Feb 2013
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
The good:

-The music and sound affects are excellent, and really add to the atmosphere.
- Some nice lighting.
- Pulse rifle 'feels' nice and heavy and sounds great.
- The motion tracker!
- The sets have been lovingly recreated from Cameron's Aliens with great attention to detail.
- Collecting goodies from the Aliens film.
- Some nice ideas: tip-toeing through the sewers without a weapon is quite creepy.
- Multi-player.

The bad

- Nothing like the trailers promised. Sob!
- Graphics just about acceptable for a title released 5 or 6 years back, but very poor by today's standards. Get up close and wince as the scenery turns to pixels.
- The campaign just isn't challenging enough, and I never really felt as if I got to let loose with the game's arsenal. Some weapons such as the flame thrower turn up at completely inappropriate points in the game.
- Aliens and other foes are dull and predictable.
- Fellow marines are bland and annoying. By the time your pal O'Neil has blundered through a door and awoken every sleeping alien in a half mile radius for the third time, you'll be wishing the Colonial Marines title wasn't plural.
- Often reliant on a marine opening a door for you to progress. Sometimes they forget and stand in a corner doing absolutely nothing. 'So you'll cover me right?' 'Oh yeah, I'm just going to stand in this corner two rooms back and face the wall.'
- Bullets pass right through your fellow marines, and so do you. This is especially annoying as you will often find the need to empty a few rounds into O'Neil.
- The motion tracker isn't really needed, which is a shame as it's a fun idea.
- Aliens walk like drag queens in stilettos, and even pull Jazz hands on occasion. Scary stuff!
- Glitches!
- No ability to issue commands to your team in campaign. The CPU characters babysit you throughout.
- Besides duck and jump there is no strafe command, or any way to sneak a look at your foes whilst staying under cover.
- Picking up items can be a bit hit and miss.
- The weapons interface is irritating, and often the same combo of buttons produces a different result. At times the torch refused to work.

The Ugly

- The blocky faces of your colleagues in the cutscenes. Think Kryten from Red Dwarf...

You have been warned! :-)
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 2, 2013 9:00 PM GMT


Wrath Of The Titans (Blu-ray + Blu-ray 3D + UV Copy) [2012] [Region Free]
Wrath Of The Titans (Blu-ray + Blu-ray 3D + UV Copy) [2012] [Region Free]
Dvd ~ Sam Worthington
Offered by Helen's Goodies
Price: £10.52

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Warning: this review contains spoilers! Finally found a film more disappointing than X-men: The Last Stand, 4 Nov 2012
Before watching this movie I recall reading that the film-makers had learned from the mistakes they made in the first film (an over-reliance on CGI, and too little character development). The first movie could have been a lot better, but I enjoyed it nonetheless, so I was expecting to see a great movie this time round.

Nope! I love Greek mythology. I'm a bit of an amateur enthusiast, and with so many great characters to choose from, I can't for the life of me understand why each of the gods on screen is granted at best the personality of a wet fish. How hard can it be, really? Poseidon is as useful as an inflatable cheeseknife. His son is even less useful and more annoying. Ares's motive for his actions is ridiculous. Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes as Zeus and Hades (two great actors), are reduced to the kind of silly arm waving that would merit a detention from Professor Snape, and don't get me started on Bill Nighy's cockney version of Hephaestus - he is meant to be the God of the Forge for goodness sake! What is present is about as irritating as what isn't: Apollo, Aphrodite, Hera, Athena...half the pantheon is missing and for no good reason.

The humans or demi-gods are no better. Perseus is in serious need of a haircut and a Rocky style montage. I thought he was going to collapse at one point when attempting to run at the start of the film. Then he put his sword through his cape. Was it meant to be funny? Or couldn't they be bothered to edit it out? These clunky moments might have been ok had Perseus shown the slightest hint of physical or mental character development during the film, but he doesn't. Towards the end of the movie the only thing he has going for him is Pegasus! And my goodness, does that flying horse take an age to get to Cronos.

This film also suffers from far too many `Lord of the Rings' moments. I am referring to those scenes that take place whenever a cast member arrives in Lothlorien, or the Mines of Moria, oops, wrong film. The camera pans from the character to some of the least convincing backdrops since George Lucas revamped the Star Wars franchise. I think that we are supposed to be awed, but I found it distracting. There are also some bizarre camera angles. I remember staring at the underside of Perseus's knee at one point. I like knees as much as the next person, but I didn't need that!

My advice is to avoid spending any of your hard earned dosh on this film. Rent it, if you must see it, but don't part with any money. Order a Hercules: The Legendary Journeys DVD box-set and bask in a far more entertaining take on Greek mythology instead (and a far superior Ares!) ;-D


The Iron Lady [DVD]
The Iron Lady [DVD]
Dvd ~ Meryl Streep
Price: £3.00

12 of 19 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Maggie: The Musical, 10 Aug 2012
This review is from: The Iron Lady [DVD] (DVD)
As a child, when I first became aware of politics, it occurred to me that the two top positions in the U.K. (the monarch and our p.m.) were both occupied by women. Subtlety, the message that gave me as a young girl was that I could do anything with my life.

That alone gave me a respect for Margaret Thatcher's achievements, and whilst I didn't agree with all of her decisions, I applauded her for her courage and strength and there can be no doubt that her legacy, both good and bad, affects all of us today.

This film is a belittling anti-tribute to a woman who remains very much alive today. Her many accomplishments are glossed over. The challenges she overcame to become p.m. In the first place are barely mentioned. The film is dominated by imagined and faintly ridiculous scenes of the p.m. as an elderly woman hallucinating images of her late husband and experiencing flashbacks - a rather obvious and tired plot device.

What we do see of the former p.m.'s career is all too brief and gives the impression that the U.K. was nothing but a riot zone throughout her whole time in office. You would also believe that she initiated the Falklands conflict. As if that isn't enough, we must also ignorantly insult her ability as a mother and a wife.

I admire Meryl Streep but this is not one of her better performances. Her Margaret owed more to Catherine Tate's foul-mouthed gran than the Iron Lady herself. Please do not base your opinion of Margaret Thatcher on this shoddy film.


Mudbound
Mudbound
by Hillary Jordan
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.74

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling, 14 Jun 2012
This review is from: Mudbound (Paperback)
The characters in this book will stay with you for a long time after you have closed its cover. One of those truly special reads; compelling, engaging and honest. The setting and the atmosphere is as tangible and oppressive as the attitudes shown towards one of the book's main characters - a coloured man returning changed from war to find that his country and its prejudices remain resolutely unchanged. Each character struggles to adapt his or her hopes and expectations to the stark reality, whether it be limitations placed by external factors or a man struggling with his own nature. The climax of this novel is absolutely gut-wrenching. You will not be disappointed. A very talented writer.


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