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"marcusmuck"

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Dr Phibes Rises Again [DVD] [1972] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Dr Phibes Rises Again [DVD] [1972] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Offered by passionFlix UK
Price: £24.74

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars He's back again., 8 April 2005
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
One of the most bizarre and sickly inventive films of all time and an absolute classic.
Vincent Price is back with more fiendish deaths devised for foolhardy folk. This time it's got an ancient Egyptian slant with some great macabre moments (normally the deaths it has to be said)
For me it's more polished than the first Phibes film. It starts with a zany recap of the first film (I'm not too sure about it's usefulness for those who haven't watched the original but there you go).
I love the mixture of ethereal organ music and kitsch 70's beebop. I wonder when they made it if they realised that people would view both as equally 'quaint' in the future.
There are lots of stalwarts British actors popping up in cameos (John Thaw is an example). The character 'Vulnavia' is there too (although played by a different actress). I'm a bit mystified as I seem to remember her dying in the first film. The character is very unsettling- played by Valli Kemp (Australian semi-finalist in the 1970 Miss World contest and whose only other film was the 'Great Muppet Caper' a decade later!).
Oh- and for those of you still interested the other actress to play Vulnavia was Virginia North................


Hellraiser 6: Hellseeker [DVD] [2002] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Hellraiser 6: Hellseeker [DVD] [2002] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars All problems solved, 1 April 2005
I came to this after watching the first 2 films many years ago. The reviews generally have been poor but I liked it (as did Clive Barker apparently).
There ARE big 'Jacob's Ladder' and 'Angel Heart' similarities (a man on the edge being pulled deeper and deeper toward damnation) and it's not REALLY a 'Hellraiser' film at all it has to be admitted - the production values say 'TV' and it's more like an episode of 'The Outer Limits' than a movie.
Although it's 89mins long I didn't find it overly drawn out as some have suggested. It gives you enough to keep you going......it's intriguing from the start with lots of threads spinning here and there (not all of them are resolved by the end and you're left assuming I'm afraid).
The acting and plot are no worse than a lot of blockbuster films out today and I found Dean Winters quite a sympathetic hero (not a macho man but someone who thinks he's losing his marbles).
And there's a good ending - quite a shock (but then I'm easily fooled).


John Carpenter's Ghosts Of Mars [DVD] [2001]
John Carpenter's Ghosts Of Mars [DVD] [2001]
Dvd ~ Natasha Henstridge
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.29

20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars There's no mistaking a Carpenter film, 1 April 2005
I enjoyed this film. It's refreshing and funny. There's no mistaking that it's a John Carpenter film. It has a good pace, witty one-liners and strong characters. It's also cheesy. But that's Carpenter for you.......
I mean, there's 200 psychos on the rampage and you're not supposed to kill them! So what do our heroes do? They blow the consequences! That's John Carpenter!
It's not the best film he has ever made but to his credit he's constantly renewing the framework he builds his films around.
This film has been denegrated by many reviewers but have these people forgotten how cliched his films can be? Surely this is one of their main attractions: they don't pretend to be anything else!
It has many similarities to a legion of other films (eg. Assault on Precinct 13, Mad Max and Rio Bravo). Carpenter has never worried about these things- take 'The Thing' for example which is a remake of Howard Hawk's 'Thing from another World'.
Ultimately though it's not scary - it's 'safe' really despite the threat of extinction and there's not enough time in the film to build tension and suspense.
Natasha Henstridge is a revelation in the lead role - she's a good actress! Jason Statham is brilliant too as the Cockney Sergeant (although I've yet to see him as anything else but 'streetwise)
The fighting (and there's a lot of it) is stylised and well choreographed (especially Henstridge).
Once again Carpenter writes the music and this time it's courtesy of Anthrax- I now see them in a new light.......
And finally, the DVD extras good- giving you a real insight into how the film was made.


Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon [DVD]
Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon [DVD]
Dvd ~ Basil Rathbone
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.99

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars That 'safe' feeling, 1 April 2005
Made in 1942 this was the fourth Basil Rathbone 'Sherlock Holmes' film.
As the credits roll you get the familiar warm 'safe' feeling that 'HE' is on the case. I love the music and dramatic effects; the crooked shots of Holmes in misty shadow with the 'in-your-face' fanfare and titles.
The film centres around a revolutionary 'bomb-sight' developed by a Swiss scientist. Holmes saves his life by posing as a Fascist 'Bookseller' "I sell you book by the famous German author Wilhelm Shakespeare" and decoys the Nazi agents. He then spirits the scientist to London where he wanders off stupidly and is kidnapped and tortured by none other than Professor Moriarty.
This is 221B with sandbags and it's more 'politically correct' than some of the other films. It's a propaganda film really.
The story skates over a lot of ground and ends abruptly (though not before England is saved) but of course the best bits are when Moriarty (Lionel Atwill) appears. In fact the rest of the film is a prelude leading up to the bit where they first lock horns. Atwill is immensely evil- he's brilliant!
Everything about this film is as good as I remember........


The 39 Steps [DVD][1939 version starring Robert Donat]
The 39 Steps [DVD][1939 version starring Robert Donat]
Dvd ~ Robert Donat
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.42

14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I still don�t know about Pippin Poultry!, 1 April 2005
How to be objective? I will start by saying that it blew me away when I first saw it years ago and even after repeated viewings there's never a dull moment.
It's my favorite Hitchcock and one of the greatest films ever made- what else would you expect!?
This film is 69 years old but still incredibly fresh.
From it's beginning in a music hall with the heckling of the 'Mr Memory' and subsequent fight: "Gentlemen, Gentlemen- you're not at home!" there's a procession of fine moments - scene after scene of sheer bliss.
Adapted from the frankly poor John Buchan novel (I read it specially) by Hitchcock favorite Charles Bennett (who wrote/adapted several other classics), it's funny, witty, clever, warm and spooky.
Robert Donat is the perfect gentleman when 'Annabella Smith' asks him to take her home with him.
Bad mistake! (though who can blame him?!) Real high drama ensues, a meeting with a comically charicatured milkman then the chase begins- this is from a time when a 'manhunt' was a REAL manhunt!
He gets to meet the sly John Laurie and the beautiful Peggy Ashcroft before a meeting with creepy Prof. Jordan.
There's great friction between Donat and Madeleine Carroll -lots of amusing one-liners, and the bit in the bedroom where Carroll takes his blanket is class.
Just read the other reviews too- it's not just me.....
The dvd is great quality and well presented- if you've not got this you know what you must do!


Hammer House Of Horror - Complete Collection [DVD] [1980]
Hammer House Of Horror - Complete Collection [DVD] [1980]
Dvd ~ Peter Cushing
Price: £8.99

66 of 72 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I�ll never eat tofu again!, 3 Jan. 2005
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Televised in 1980, here are 13 hour long episodes- all self contained with shock endings - some predictable, some not. They're never out-and-out horror but very disturbing all the same.
Very good value despite being a mixed bag. Reading the other reviews it seems everyone has a different opinion on the best and worst......
Most seem to have watched this in 1980 and I'm no exception- the theme music was scarily familiar- you'll be humming it for ages......
The production values are very 'Hammer'-like. A lot of episodes shot in various country mansions in the Home Counties using cheap TV actors.
As a side issue, they were televised weekly in a different order to that on this DVD. The episode order in 1980 was: 5,10, 7,13, 1, 8, 2, 9, 11, 12, 6, 3, 4.
1/ THE HOUSE THAT BLED TO DEATH 8/10
A young couple (Nicholas Ball and Rachel Davies) with their little girl move into an innocent semi-detached- then things start to go wrong. They discover the house has a nasty history.......
It doesn't take long to start acting up- and it's always the family pet that suffers first! It has a very ordinary family under great strain- and especially where kids are involved your heart goes in your mouth.
Very effective.
2/ THE SILENT SCREAM 9/10
Another classic.
An ex-con (a youthful Brian Cox) is given a job by a nice pet-store owner (guess who) with a penchant for cages.
Peter Cushing is chilling and very very good.
What kind of mind thought of this? No violence, no bloodshed, no aliens or monsters but this will stay with you forever (I can remember lying awake as a kid trying to figure ways to escape.......)
3/ THE TWO FACES OF EVIL 6/10
A perfect family on holiday picks up a hitch-hiker with depressingly inevitable consequences.
This where things start to go downhill- lots of illogical happenings- more a nightmare and nothing is ever explained. A bit silly at times but still disturbing as a result with plenty of sinister odd people with sly off-set glances. Ugh!
4/ THE MARK OF SATAN 6/10
Disturbing as a descent into madness and nothing to do with devil whorship really. It keeps you guessing where the real danger lies.
Melodramatic and intense. It has it's good moments- it's bizarre if nothing else! Edwin (Peter McEnery) is very good
5/ WITCHING TIME 4/10
A cuckolded musician (Jon Finch) is entranced by a witch (a delightful Patricia Quinn as 'Lucinda Jessop') who's managed to escape death and travel forward through time. His wife (Prunella Gee) is now enemy No.1...
A bit lame but quite amusing in places.
6/ VISITOR FROM THE GRAVE 4/10
A woman with mental problems is attacked but kills her assailant. Then he returns to threaten her.
It seems obvious what's happening from the start and is only worth watching for well known faces- Simon MacCorkindale and Gareth Thomas ('Blake' from 'Blakes7') as the 'Swami Gupta Krishna. This is classic (corny) stuff.
7/ RUDE AWAKENING 8/10
This is more like it!
Denholm Elliot is absolutely head and shoulders above everyone as a deranged estate agent in a recurring nightmare.
It's scary and puzzling but has some really good comic moments too.
And look out for the brilliant (literally) bedstead and bedcovers in his house.
8/ CHARLIE BOY 5/10
No happy endings here! Interesting if predictable tale of an African 'Witchdoctors' doll that wreaks havoc in the lives of a couple that inherit it.
There's some good acting but it couldh've been made more sinister for me.
9/ CHILDREN OF THE FULL MOON 7/10
I quite liked this one- although it's pretty obvious what's happening from the start. Young couple (the man is Christopher Cazenove) break down and are very well looked after by an odd lady (Diana Dors is brilliantly creepy) and her collection of children in a secluded mansion.
For once the male lead is spot on the mark as far as assessing where the danger lies......it's an interesting slant on werewolves.
Looking at the credits I also notice Victoria Wood is in this one too! Must play it back again........
10/ THE 13TH REUNION 7/10
A farce initially it turns out better than you think it will- and quite grisly too!
This is a good-old fashioned mystery with a 'Woman's Weekly' reporter taking the lead investigating dodgy-goings-on at a health farm.
The dinner scene is very good- lots of close-ups of hungry faces- yum yum!
11/ THE CARPATHIAN EAGLE 6/10
This centres around a series of grisly killings where men are lured to their deaths by a 'mysterious' psychopath.
It's pretty obvious who the killer is: I mean, who is the fittest, most 'Amazonian' character in the episode?
It includes a young Pierce Brosnan as 'cannon fodder' and Suzanne Danielle is gorgeously strong- whatever happened to her?
Anthony Valentine is a stalwart too- I felt real sympathy for his character.
12/ GUARDIAN OF THE ABYSS 5/10
Charles Randolph (a mesmeric John Carson) runs a cult that is up to no good and wants to sacrifice various ladies (makes you wonder what possessed them to join up initially.......?)

Paul Darrow (another 'Blakes 7' actor: Avon this time) is a very bad antiques dealer (his attempt to buy the 'scrying glass' initially is ridiculous)
The hero (Ray Lonnen as Michael Roberts) is irritating and I found myself cheering on the baddies on this one.....
13/ GROWING PAINS 4/10
Happy Families! Horrible kids and possessed bunnies.......
An irritatingly stupid kid eats chemicals from his father's laboratory and dies (you later feel bad when you learn he was trying to gain attention from his preoccupied father and errant mother).
The parent's get another 'ready-made' child but it turns out to be a bad mistake.
There's a few creepy moments (with the bunnies) but some ridiculous bits with two Oxford-educated 'third-world' politicians and a deranged dog.
I'll never eat tofu again!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 22, 2008 1:38 AM BST


A Night At The Opera
A Night At The Opera
Offered by Bridge_Records
Price: £6.61

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worthy of a Good Night Out!, 17 Dec. 2004
This review is from: A Night At The Opera (Audio CD)
Worthy of a Good Night Out!
I bought this album over 25 years ago (yes- I'm that old!) Sad to say I've
not played it for many years- today I put it on & turned the volume up- It
absolutely blew me away.
'Death on Two Legs' is the absolutely best start to an album I can think of!
THE archetypal Queen track- a quiet piano introduction, orchestral chorus, shrill guitar solos and then Freddie kicking in with his cruelly snappy lyrics....wow!
I wouldn't consider myself a 'Rocker' and maybe this is why I don't see any inconsistencies between the tracks as some people do. It's well balanced- in terms of style, content and length. By the end you've experienced the gamut of emotions. What more could you ask for?
This is a '70's Rock album and there should be no surprise at the posturing- I mean they were very 'tongue in cheek.
If you want unremitting Rock why not compile your favorite guitar tracks on one big CD & forget about the 'whimsical' bits.
But if you want a piece of theatre, with comic asides ('Lazing on a Sunday afternoon', 'Seaside rendezvous'), flights of fancy ('I'm in love with my car' ), Sci-fi theatre ('39') and Biblical Epic ('Prophet's song ') then this is for you....
.......oh, and then there's that album filler called 'Bohemian rhapsody' too.


Tenebrae (Full Uncut Version) [DVD] [1983]
Tenebrae (Full Uncut Version) [DVD] [1983]
Dvd ~ Anthony Franciosa

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Argento �touch�., 15 Oct. 2004
This DVD is the full uncut version (though to be honest I've seen a lot worse gore in mainstream films today that have blithely floated past the censors).
This was made in 1982 and although it displays similarities to Argento's earlier triumphs it doesn't seem as compelling or experimental as Profondo Rosso or Suspiria. It doesn't seem to have that same quirkiness or genuine oddness either.
Having said that it DOES have the same beautiful high panning shots, creeping over the outside looking in and of course it has the 1st person killer point-of-view shots complete with heavy breathing. There's a great sequence in a plaza with John Saxon too as he waits for someone he watches the world go by.....
The music is 100% synthesiser based (very 80's) and is from ĺ of 'Goblin' (who collaborated on other Argento classics). I found the effect not as creepy as on other films but that didn't stop me from humming the refrain for ages after.........
The action starts abruptly enough with the bumping off of some low-lifes in an appropriate manner. There's a fair number of red herrings as things go along - the story gets more gripping as the story pans out.
But in the end it's a straightforward slasher with a shock ending. If it wasn't for the Argento 'touch' how different would this be from a lot of others in the genre?
Speaking of the 'touch', I did like the sculpture bit at the end - very creative and immensely cruel.
Also, the DVD extras make this a great package for your collection.......


Timeline [DVD] [2003]
Timeline [DVD] [2003]
Dvd ~ Paul Walker
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.34

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Archaeology is FUN!, 13 Oct. 2004
This review is from: Timeline [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
This has an interesting and unusual idea as a basis (from a book by Michael Crichton) but sadly seems to lose it's way at times.
Basically a space/time 'wormhole' is discovered enables people to travel back in time- but only to medieval France. A group of archaeologists are coerced into going back to save one of their number stranded there.
There's a clash of cultures between the Scientists/Military/MoneyMen versus the History-loving Archaeologists. There's a lot of inconsistencies glossed over (presumably explained in the book) but hey- it's an action film first and foremost.
It has an abrupt start and I thought 'Great! That means there's so much to fit into the rest of the film that they've glossed over character building and scene setting!'.
I was wrong. It meanders once it gets going and seems to think it has to justify how History can be 'F.U.N'
Having said that there's a dependable and credible (if odd) cast, and Richard Donner is a veritable stalwart of cinema direction.
The locations are beautiful- shot mainly in Quebec (which is in line with it's French connection!). Some of the sets are impressive too and the stunts pretty good.
So all-in-all a bit formulaic but not a bad film.


House Of Games [DVD]
House Of Games [DVD]
Dvd ~ Lindsay Crouse
Offered by Discs4all
Price: £5.26

8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars �You�re a bad pony and I�m not going to bet on you�, 13 Oct. 2004
This review is from: House Of Games [DVD] (DVD)
Directed and written by David Mamet (his directorial debut) it's a strange, moody film due mainly to the principle character's (Lindsay Crouse) stagnant emotionless performance (intended I hope).
She plays a celebrated psychologist that seem to wander through life in search of mystery and danger. She finds it in the shape of Joe Mantegna (who is brilliant as the mysterious con-man). Both characters have a magnetic quality about them.
You know there's a twist coming but don't know just where or how. There's a lot of talking and little action until the end. It's like this film has come out of the Edward Hopper painting 'Nighthawks'.......
The anticipated ending is a bit of a cop out really (to resort to violence when out-foxed that is).
You're left curiously empty.


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