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Dead Snow 2: Red Vs Dead [Blu-ray]
Dead Snow 2: Red Vs Dead [Blu-ray]
Dvd ~ Martin Starr
Price: £12.50

1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars An Intolerably Bad Sequel, With Almost No Redeeming Factors!, 17 Jan. 2015
Oh dear! Why, Tommy Wirkola? Why?! You gave us the sublime DEAD SNOW - one of the greatest and most enjoyable horror films in recent times, and then just a few years later, you give us this - this complete cow-pat of a sequel!

Everything that made the first film great - a likeable cast; a clever, literate, fun and well-honed script, along with some great gore - is jettisoned for this shoddy, third-rate release! An awful second film, with almost no redeeming qualities to it, whatsoever!

Firstly, fans should be made aware, that there are two versions of this sequel:
- The English-language version, that runs to 100m 32s, and
- the "International" or Norwegian version, which runs to 100m 53s.

Both are almost identical, in terms of content, with just occasional exceptions here-and-there, except for the spoken language. However, both were filmed at the same time with the same cast and crew. Why two versions were needed, unless that is, Mr Wirkola was trying to gain more fans in Hollywood, by Anglicising his work, I don't know. They cancel each other out, as both are neither wholly in Norwegian, nor wholly in English, to the detriment of the film as a whole!

Sadly, the UK Blu-Ray and/or DVD versions only get the International version, predominantly in Norwegian, with some English. which - if I had to choose - is a marginal improvement over the purely English-language version. The English-language version, is a US Exclusive to the US WellGo Entertainment Blu-Ray release. Admittedly, that release is labelled as being Region A (US only) locked, but their release is - in fact - Region Free, and can be safely imported into the UK and played on the vast majority of UK Blu-Ray players and drives.

With that said, and irrespective of which release you buy, or which version of the film you view, the film as a whole, is pretty bloody terrible. It starts off really well, with Martin (Vegar Hoel) the only survivor from the original, getting into his car, having chainsawed his arm off, and desperately trying to escape. Continuing off from the final moments of the original, was a great idea. As his escape is complicated by some more Nazi's, things don't run smoothly, and the resulting bloodbath is both side-splittingly funny and very graphic!

Alas, the film degenerates rapidly, once Martin arrives in hospital, and then tries to convince people that Nazi Zombies are about to take over the world, because of the Nazi Gold he and his friends from the original film discovered in their cabin, but were all brutally slaughtered for.

The film outstays its welcome for four reasons:
1) At 101-minutes, it chugs along rather slowly, compared to the dynamite pace of the first.
2) There's almost no plot once Martin arrives in hospital. He escapes, and he fights the Nazi Zombies. That's it!
3) The acting is absolutely horrific! Some of the worst "talent" I've seen in a movie, in many a year!
4) Tommy Wirkola clearly decided to forego a great script, and spend his budget on CGI effects and lots more zombies - both of which negate much of the enjoyment for the viewer.

Some of the CGI seems horribly misplaced. When Martin and Herzog, the lead Nazi Zombie, resurrect their armies of undead, they do so by punching the ground, and have the deceased brought back to life with "lightning bolts". The effect looks cheap, and is really hammy, in my view. Worse still, the fact we have more zombies, does not mean this is a more enjoyable film. It isn't! In fact, having about 80 or so, undead - split across the "good" and "bad" sides - just means Wirkola has to spend more time finding more interesting ways to dispatch each of those who die. There's only so many intestine-ripping deaths, or heads being crushed, that I can stomach, before it all blends into one, gigantic mess of movie Special Effects! It all becomes mind-numbingly dull, rather than exciting, shocking or enjoyable! For every fun or shocking death, there are ten or twelve others that are pointlessly repeated.

On top of this, the acting is atrocious! Martin seems to be acting very much by-the-numbers, just shouting and screaming enough to remain plausible. But the three "Americans" who form the "Zombie Squad" (an internet-based group who really believe that the world is being overrun by zombies) is just farcical, to the point of embarrasement! It's a shockingly inept set of characters, marred by an even worse bunch of talentless morons, who can't act for toffee!

To really twist the knife, in the viewers guts, two of the Zombie Squad are "American" teenage nerds/geeks, one of whom is obsessed with STAR WARS! This kind of tokenistic fan-worshipping kills the film stone dead! It's shambolic, to the point, that you'll feel ashamed to be spending time watch them desperately fight their way through the zombie hordes. I name and shame the following three actors: Martin Starr as Daniel, Jocelyn DeBoer as Monica, and Ingrid Haas as Blake, so you can avoid all of them, should they turn-up in any other work, in the near future. None of these three could punch their way out of a saturated paper bag. They give bad films a bad reputation, because they seem to be under the illusion, that all their hysterical screeching and shouting of "America", in a rather pathetic piece of blatant jingoism, counts as actual acting. It doesn't!

Yes, the film contains many fun and gory deaths, which are quite impressive. Yes, the film is mindlessly fun at times. But it all smacks of utter desperation and tragedy - and not in a good way. This is ineptness, painted large, with a budget that clearly didn't stretch to anyone remotely competent, having been completely decimated on the CGI and a fully working Army Tank! I kid you not! Even the Police officers are all hamming it up, whilst the viewer sits there, with their head in their hands just begging for this nonsense to cease as quickly as humanly possible! The latter part of the film, is a twenty-minute grudge match, with the Good Zombies fighting the Bad Nazi Zombies. It's embarassing to watch, for much of the time, and feels like I'm watching some talentless, bottom of the league, primary school football teams slug it out. It's just toe-curlingly awful!

Tommy Wirkola has, in my view at least, quite blatantly sold himself, (and that of the DEAD SNOW franchise), out! And this is absolutely a franchise, because Part 2 ends up with a post-credits coda that clearly demonstrates we are going to be seeing a DEAD SNOW 3 in the not-too-distant future.

Why did you have to sell yourself out, Mr Wirkola?! I get the impression that if you were given a smaller budget, and less time, you might have come up with something much more tightly-paced and innovative - the very things that made the first movie such a surprisingly great hit around the globe. As it stands, this is just a car-wreck of a movie, and should be immediately disassociated from the original!

Even the Extras aren't great: the UK release gets a 2-minute Special Effects thing, that merely shows the before and after shots. There's a trailer, and a short-film of about 14 minutes. Considering the original film, came with an 80-minute Documentary about the "Making Of", this is just a two-fingered-salute from the UK studio to the fans! At least the USA, gets the alternate edit of the film (the English-language version) to watch, alongside the other pitiful extras.

Ultimately, this is a film rotten to the core. It's barely worth renting, let alone purchasing, but either way, it sullies and degrades the original film's name. And that is something Tommy Wirkola should be thoroughly ashamed of! In my eyes, this is now another in a long line of great films, with really lousy sequels. Avoid it!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 19, 2015 2:57 PM GMT

Alien Nation - The Complete Series [DVD] [1990]  [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Alien Nation - The Complete Series [DVD] [1990] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Gary Graham
Offered by supermart_usa
Price: £14.77

1.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars For The Show, One Star For This US Release!, 12 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The show is fantastic, and I love it! One of the most innovative sci-fi shows ever made, cruelly cancelled way-too-soon, by Fox. (Though five TV movies did almost compensate, for the show's premature cancellation.) A 5-Star show, without doubt!

However, the reason for my 1-Star rating is for this reason, and this reason alone: the six discs are all single-layered, double-sided "flipper" discs! That is, you get AV material on both sides of each disc!

Considering this is 2015, and this set on my came out in the past few years, it's staggering AND shocking that a company like 20th Century Fox are still releasing any TV shows or films, on these kinds of discs! What are they thinking of?!

These discs are the worst kind of discs for users/customers, as they often arrive already covered in scratches, marks or fingerprints, as mine did! This is NOT acceptable! Only dual-layered, single-sided discs should be being used for a TV show like this! Moreso, when there's less than 90 minutes of AV material on each side!

As such, I can only advise all customers to NOT buy the US Region 1 set, unless you have no other choice! I'm going to now purchase the UK Region 2 release, which come on single-sided, dual-layered discs. I'd have preferred to keep the US set, as it doesn't have the 4% Pal speed-up issue that affects the UK set, and it was about £8 cheaper. But if the extra £8 in costs, means I get proper, single-sided, dual-layered discs that are more robust, then so be it!

A rare occasion when the US release is actually inferior to the UK one!

Nix 5g Styptic Pencil
Nix 5g Styptic Pencil
Offered by JMHWholesalers
Price: £3.28

5.0 out of 5 stars Why Aren't These Sold In Every Supermarket And Pharmacy?, 22 Dec. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
If you're a bloke, and you've ever cut yourself shaving, then you need these Styptic Pencils in your bathroom right now! Forget blotting your face with bits of toilet roll, or clamping a towel to your face and neck, in the vague hope that the blood will stop flowing sooner, rather than later! Now, you can stop the bleeding in just a few, short minutes!

Once you've shaved, wash your face off with water. Dry your skin, and then take the Styptic Pencil. Dip it in water, to wet the tip, and then dab the damp tip onto your cut(s).

Yes, this will sting, for a moment, but that soon goes away. Leave for a few minutes, and then you'll notice small, white patches on the areas you've used the Pencil on. Use a bit of damp tissue, and dab the white patches, until they go away. Do NOT apply aftershave or any kind of after-shave skin lotion/balm, however, as this can reopen the cuts, and/or cause immense pain when the aftershave enters the cuts!

Once this has been done, your neck and face should no longer look like Jack The Ripper's had some fun on it!

An excellent device, but I do have to ask why Styptic Pencils aren't sold in every single supermarket and pharmacy up-and-down the land?! (And more importantly, why aren't these included in shaving sets/kits, as standard?!) I've asked in numerous places, and hardly anyone knows about these things!

Get this, and never suffer from self-inflicted blood loss again! Fantastic stuff!

P.S. You could probably use these things on other minor cuts and bruises, but I wouldn't like to guess if they would do the job or not. Might be worth trying though. :)

20 x Silicone Analog Controller Thumb Stick Grips Cap Cover For PS3 Xbox 360 Xbox One Game Accessories Replacement Parts
20 x Silicone Analog Controller Thumb Stick Grips Cap Cover For PS3 Xbox 360 Xbox One Game Accessories Replacement Parts
Offered by Gosear-tech
Price: £2.31

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cheap, But Excellent! Highly Recommended!, 25 Nov. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Cheap, but excellent Thumb Stick Grip Covers! Considering these are less than £3, I would heartily recommend these! Fantastic value, for a fab product!

Shock & Awe: Four Films by Lars von Trier [Blu-ray]
Shock & Awe: Four Films by Lars von Trier [Blu-ray]
Dvd ~ Charlotte Gainsbourg
Price: £59.99

7 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hit & Miss More Like!, 12 Nov. 2014
LVT is a director you will either love or hate. This collection offers nothing new, to those of you who have bought the releases separately, except for the lower price.

What you get here, is a couple of great films, one very good, and two really pretty awful ones. For me, ANTI-CHRIST and MELANCHOLIA are the great films. BREAKING THE WAVES is good, and NYMPHOMANIAC PARTS 1 & 2 are the two titles that are the least interesting, and possibly two of LVT's worst works. I'll leave it to you to decide whether you agree with my verdicts or not, because Von Trier is a very Marmite director.

As such, buy accordingly.

Detectorists (Original Soundtrack from the TV Series)
Detectorists (Original Soundtrack from the TV Series)
Price: £0.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Joyous And Delightful!, 8 Nov. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A delightful song that accompanies the superb BBC4 series of the same name. I just wish that we could also get the instrumental version of the song as well, which percolates through the show, on a regular basis.

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare - Day Zero Edition (Xbox 360)
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare - Day Zero Edition (Xbox 360)
Price: £42.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very By-The-Numbers COD, 8 Nov. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
So, I've bought this, and having played most of the COD games in the long-running series, I have to say, that I'm definitely in the less-positive camp of those of you who have reviewed this game so far.

Playing on my XBox 360, the game is just good or average, at best. It almost never reaches anything better than that.

Graphically, it's okay. Nothing trend-setting, nothing amazing, and certainly nothing that makes you go "wow"! In fact, I would probably argue that graphically, it's not as good as the MODERN WARFARE series. ADVANCED WARFARE definitely makes the characters look far more "cartoony" (computer-graphicy) than realistic. Everyone looks like a CGI version of themselves. You don't feel like you're playing against actual characters, just computer-generated "corpses" that look vaguely human. Obviously, all the characters are CGI-creations, but in previous COD incarnations, the characters had depth and emotion to them. When they got hurt, you felt like you had a duty to help them out. Here, it just feels completely artificial. There's no attempt at making me feel like I'm playing anything other than a very bog-standard computer game.

Check out how acclaimed actor Kevin Spacey looks in the original ADVANCED WARFARE trailer, against how he looks in the XBox 360 version of the game. Do you see any differences?

In the trailer, he looked like a CGI variant of Spacey, but with all of his mannerisms, and characterisations. In the 360 version, it looks like Spacey, and sounds like him too, but it doesn't feel like you are playing against him. There's just no gravitas - for want of a better word - to him in the game. You'll also notice that the 360 version seems to have been downgraded from the XBox One version. Graphics aren't as sharp. The resolution isn't as clear or detailed. Things just don't appear as they should do. It just all feels very "meh"!

Likewise, with the offline gameplay. It's all merely acceptable, rather than enjoyable. Shoot this, avoid that, move on. There's no depth here. I don't feel like I'm being entertained. It's more of an effort to get me to sit through this! There's nothing that hooks me in, and makes me want to come back again. In fact, I'd even argue that this game is a genuine chore to play, because - with the exception of one level near the very end of the game - it's a struggle to enjoy any aspect of the scenarios you're placed in. It's just a complete chore!

What frustrated me more than anything, are the irritating glitches:
- The lip-sync of the CGI characters is atrocious! It's all over the place, and makes it look like you are watching a foreign-language film that's been dubbed badly into English. Half the time, the lip-movements bear no resemblance to the dialogue you can hear, and it really takes you out of the game.
- The new "jumping" moves: yes, it's fun at first, but as you progress, you realise that it's really just a gimmick, with little worthwhile value to it.
- The gameplay: there's nothing here you haven't seen before, and seen done better in MODERN WARFARE 2 or MODERN WARFARE 3. Whole levels are pretty much carbon-copies, with changes to the way they physically look. It's all a tad depressing, to be honest.

Ultimately, this should have been so much better than it actually was. The game is nothing more than very average; by-the-book; run-of-the-mill, and that disappoints me greatly. Any game that is like that, is invariably going to annoy more people than it pleases.

My XBox isn't connected online, so I can't comment on what the online gameplay is like, but if it's anything like the offline game, then it's hardly going to be making your jaw drop.

If you've never played a COD game before, I would recommend MODERN WARFARE 1, 2 or 3. They are all much better, and more enjoyable in every aspect, and are significantly cheaper too. As it stands, ADVANCED WARFARE is just acceptable: nothing more, nothing less. Definitely a case of not living up to the hype! A real shame! Ideally, I'd rate it 1.5, but as Amazon doesn't let us do that, I'll be generous and rate it at 2-Stars.

However, be warned, the game has a real cop-out ending, that is utterly disastrous, as if the games-designers just couldn't be bothered either. Only buy this game if you are an absolute COD completist, or it's dirt cheap!

Blue Velvet [Blu-ray] Special Edition inc Lost Footage (exclusive to
Blue Velvet [Blu-ray] Special Edition inc Lost Footage (exclusive to
Dvd ~ Isabella Rossellini
Price: £15.26

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 5-Stars For The Film, 2-Stars For This Misleading Amazon Exclusive Blu-Ray Release, 6 Nov. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The film is shocking, brilliant, twisted, nightmarish! But, you'll probably already be a fan anyway. This review, is really to warn everyone about Amazon's "Exclusive" Blu-Ray release, which is a nightmare for all the wrong reasons.

As others have already pointed-out, firstly this is absolutely NOT a Director's Cut, nor a Special Edition of the film in any way, shape or form! What you actually get is:

Disc 1 - The standard, much-loved 121 minute Theatrical Version of the film, in a nice, but nothing special 16:9 format, in the original 2.35:1 ratio, with a DTS HD Master Audio audio track in either 5.1 or 2.0. You also get about 2 hours of extras, which I have to admit, are pretty good. There's a 71-minute making-of documentary, plus a 45 minute interview with Dennis Hopper, some Outtakes and a featurette lasting less than a couple of minutes, of Roger Ebert's fairly scathing review of the film.

Disc 2 - This is the misleading part. Here you get the 52 minutes of "lost" material. They're not put into the film. They've not been contextualised in any way. And they're not in any particular order either. The Outtakes featurette is duplicated on here as well, for some odd reason, too.

If you don't own BLUE VELVET on Blu-Ray, then this edition IS worth purchasing. However, it's been horrifyingly misrepresented and missold by, as being something it absolutely is not. And that is why I, and many others, have returned their copies in anger and frustration.

There's one more thing: Disc 1 is a measly 25gb-sized disc. This means that more than four hours of content have been crammed onto a Single Layered Blu-Ray disc. Whilst the film looks fairly good, it's not perfect. If Amazon, Scanbox and High Fliers Films had gotten their act together, and presented this film properly, with both the Theatrical Cut and Director's Cut's (including all the "lost" footage re-inserted back into the film in its proper order and place), and put the films on 50gb discs, along with all of the extras, then I think most people would be raving about this disc.

Sadly, it's a real pig's ear of a release, (no pun intended!), and Amazon really do need to pull this release immediately, or at least stop advertising it as something it definitely is not!

ADDENDUM: It seems that Amazon are now trying to "hide" this release from public sight. If you do a normal search for "Blue Velvet" on Blu-Ray, you will NOT find this new release come-up! The only way to access it now, is by using the following weblink...

I wonder why it's gone into hiding? Maybe we should call in Agent Cooper for that answer! ;)

Detectorists [DVD]
Detectorists [DVD]
Dvd ~ Mackenzie Crook
Price: £13.62

59 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why Is This Buried On BBC4?!, 27 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Detectorists [DVD] (DVD)
N.B. This review has been added-too since it was originally published. Please pay attention to ADDENDUM 2, at the end! Thanks!

A very sweet-natured, and gentle British comedy, that is far better than it has any right to be. Mackenzie Crook plays Andy, a semi-awkward adult trying to get by in life, with his long-suffering school-teacher girlfriend. In his spare time, he joins up with Lance (the wonderfully wry, Toby Jones, in yet another show-stealing role), as they indulge in their passion for metal detecting.

As "Detectorists", they enjoy shooting-the-breeze about their not-so-happy lives, the perils of romance and relationships, and the gentle camaraderie between the two, as they aim to discover the horde of all hordes, in Danebury (actually the village/town of Framlingham in Suffolk).

Even if you have no interest in the hobby, this is still one of the loveliest shows in recent times, and the subtle characterisations and interplay between Andy and Lance, is wonderful. Through their conversations, we discover what makes them tick, as these two humble gents try to make their way in the world, taking each day and each discovery in their stride, whilst desperately trying to outwit their rivals at The Antiqui-Searchers!

The show rolls gently between drama, silly laugh-out-loud humour, and real human tenderness, often within a single episode, and it's clear Crook has worked hard at getting this show down to the finely-honed treat that you see on display here.

One or two of the characters, are a little sterotyped (Lance's ex-wife and her new boyfriend), but overall the pluses far outweigh any minuses. Episodes 2 and 3 are especially funny! This charming, gentle comedy show, is one of the BBC's best comedies, and it's been unfairly buried on BBC4. You owe it to yourself to rediscover it on DVD. (Shame there's no impending Blu-Ray release!)

Just be warned: the ending is a complete, blinding gem! It's one of the finest endings to any TV show I've ever seen! It mixes the right amount of humour, subtlety, pathos, and potential springboard for another series, absolutely perfectly!

My only real complaint, is that episodes are only 30-minutes long, and there's only six of them. I really do implore the BBC to give this another, longer, Second Series next year, as it's a real charmer, and deserves to become a real crossover hit, with the masses. Quite simply, it's a charmer and a grower! Enjoy this series, and the antics of the DMDC! It really is very good!

ADDENDUM 1: The BBC have officially confirmed and announced that DETECTORISTS WILL BE BACK in 2015, on BBC4, albeit only for another run of six x 30-minute episodes! That's not enough in my book, but if they're even half-as-good as this first batch, then this will still be - in my view - one of the best TV shows this year, and possibly the best BBC show of 2014!

ADDENDUM 2: Having now watched my DVD, there are a couple of important things worth noting:
1) The DVD includes a fun 25-minute "Making Of" documentary, which is really nice. You'll learn some fun facts about the show, the cast and Mackenzie Crook himself. (Hint: Metal-detecting as a hobby, wasn't something he just randomly chose for this show!)

2) The AV quality is not as good as I would have liked! As this is a UK-PAL formatted DVD, you get the annoying 4% speed-up, inherent when transferring any film/TV show onto DVD, and the music on the opening credits of each episode, sound a little bit faster, and with a higher pitch than that of the broadcast versions. It's an annoying quirk, and one that frustrates me somewhat. Jerome Flynn's theme song is so beautiful, and to hear it speeded-up, taints it somewhat!

The picture quality also suffers from being softer than necessary, because A) it's in Standard Definition rather than the High Definition we all viewed the show in originally, on BBC4, but more importantly, because of B) and that's because all six episodes, and extras (totalling around 3hrs 40 minutes) have been ruthlessly crammed onto a single, dual-layed DVD disc, rather than be spread-out across two discs, as is often customary for TV shows like this. DVD's shouldn't really have more than 3 hours of material crammed onto them. The AV needs room to breathe, and I so wished that Episodes 1-4 had been on one disc, and Episodes 5, 6 and the extras had been on a second one!

Due to these issues, I'm tempted to lower my rating down to 4 Stars. However, I won't, because the show itself, is as near to TV perfection as I've got this year, and I'm generously willing to overlook these two issues. With that said, you should be aware of these issues! I so wish this had been given a Blu-Ray release, and I really do implore the BBC to release Series 1 on Blu-Ray as soon as they can! It needs it, but more importantly, it deserves it! Standard Definition just doesn't do this show justice at all! Immensely frustrating!
Comment Comments (8) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 8, 2014 11:59 PM GMT

Anchorman - The Legend Of Ron Burgundy [DVD]
Anchorman - The Legend Of Ron Burgundy [DVD]
Dvd ~ Will Ferrell
Price: £5.00

0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Infantile In Every Aspect! Do Not Waste Money On This Drivel!, 21 Oct. 2014
It's taken me years to get around to bothering with this film, and now I know why. Despite what many others claim, this is NOT remotely funny. It's infantile in every aspect, and is merely an excuse for Will Ferrell to peddle some cheap, lame sexism for 90 minutes.

When the best joke in the film, is a woman punching a man in his genitals, then what does that tell you about the rest of the film's comedic mentality?!

The joke is sorely on us, the viewing public, who stupidly lapped-up the reviews about how great this film was! It's not great. It's not good. It's not even mediocre, or okay, or barely watchable. Even decrying this as infantile, is a tad too much of a compliment!

A worthless film, that somehow managed to spawn a sequel.

As Charlie Brown would say "Good grief"!

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