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Reviews Written by
Philippa Christmass (Perth, WA Australia)

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Doctor Zhivago [1965] [DVD]
Doctor Zhivago [1965] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Omar Sharif
Price: £4.98

142 of 151 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully restored masterpiece on DVD, 10 Dec. 2003
This review is from: Doctor Zhivago [1965] [DVD] (DVD)
I first saw this film about 10 years ago. I was an impressionable teenager and was swept away by the intensity and romanticism of this film. Coming to it again after all these years,I wasn't sure how I would react. But to say I was NOT disappointed would be an understatement. The first thing to say is that this film looks even more stunning on DVD - the breathtaking cinematography is served well by the transfer to DVD. I was struck again by the visual beauty and lyricism of this film, and I must disagree with the amazon review - I thought Omar Sharif and Julie Christie's performances were brilliant in a subtle, understated way. There is none of the cheesy overacting which mars so many films produced in the mid-sixties. Sharif is mesmerising - he brings a quiet, sensitive soulfulness to his role as Zhivago. This film is so long that the DVD actually contains an "intermission", but with such an intriguing, involving story, you don't notice the hours pass. I am generally not one for Hollywood epics, but after watching this again it's reinstated as one of my all-time favourite films. DVD was invented so that we can have the privilege of seeing these beautiful, classic films in all their intended glory.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 9, 2012 6:51 PM BST

De Stijl
De Stijl
Price: £7.00

11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The White Stripes' best, 11 Nov. 2003
This review is from: De Stijl (Audio CD)
I have all four Stripes albums and this is definitely the best (closely followed by Elephant). I instantly fell in love with this album and have played it relentlessly since buying it. It's very rare that I like every song on an album. This is what the Stripes do best - a combination of unbelievably good blues-punk ("Hello Operator" and "Little Bird" must be listened to LOUD), energetic 60s garage pop ("Jumble Jumble" and "You're Pretty Good Looking") and slightly folkier, introspective songs ("I'm Bound to Pack it Up"). My all-time favourite Stripes song, "Sister Do You Know My Name", is on this album. This has quickly become one of my favourite albums of all time - one of those albums that makes you want to throw a party, get drunk and dance around the house like a mad fool. It's totally bursting with energy and a sort of naive exuberance. If you're new to the White Stripes, get DE STIJL first - you'll understand that the music more than lives up to the hype.

God Is In The House [DVD] [2009]
God Is In The House [DVD] [2009]
Dvd ~ Nick Cave

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A legend in his own lifetime, 16 Sept. 2003
This is a no-frills concert DVD of the Bad Seeds' "And No More Shall We Part" tour. I had the privilege of seeing the Perth leg of this tour back in 2001, so the DVD brought back some great memories. I agree that the picture quality is not the sharpest I've ever seen, but it is by no means bad, and the sound quality is perfectly good. The set is split between the slower, ballady songs in the Bad Seeds repertoire (excellent renditions of "Into My Arms" and "Lime Tree Arbour") and faster, more manic songs like "Papa Won't Leave You, Henry" and the wondrous "Saint Huck". Nick is in fine voice, hovering over the front rows of the crowd like a sinister evangelist. The man is well into his forties and still has energy to burn. The DVD also has three promo clips, one of which ("As I Sat Sadly By Her Side") I'd never seen before, and it's very good. The studio documentary is quite interesting, and you get a glimpse ofNick Cave's dry wit, which was also evident in his comments for the video collection that came out after The Boatman's Call. I'd recommend this DVD to anyone who's a longtime and ardent fan of Nick Cave. For anyone who has seen Nick Cave live, it works as an excellent reminder of his power as a live performer.

Dog Man Star
Dog Man Star
Offered by Telstar Entertainment
Price: £7.99

13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Suede's masterpiece, 28 July 2003
This review is from: Dog Man Star (Audio CD)
I agree with the other review - Dog Man Star requires a few listens, but it will grow on you until you recognise it for what it is - a masterpiece, one of the greatest albums of the 1990s.
No other "Britpop band", if you can call Suede that, were making
music this ambitious, emotionally dramatic or powerful in 1994.
Brett Anderson is one of music's most remarkable vocalists - if you're in any doubt, take one listen to the album's closing track,"Still Life", one of the most climactic pieces of music I've ever heard. Put this song on and play it LOUD...This album is not for people who prefer lightweight, unchallenging pop. It contains some lush orchestral
arrangements, ambient Bowie-ish strangeness in "Daddy's Speeding", the lush romanticism of "The Wild Ones" and the jump-up-and-down anthem "New Generation". This is one of my two favourite albums of all time. The other is the first Suede album!
Suede have been criminally underrated in comparison with bands like Blur and Oasis. But in the early days of Britpop at least, Suede ran rings around these two bands, producing two albums of breathtaking beauty.

Romeo + Juliet [DVD] [1996]
Romeo + Juliet [DVD] [1996]
Dvd ~ Leonardo DiCaprio
Price: £2.98

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Baz's best, 10 Mar. 2003
This review is from: Romeo + Juliet [DVD] [1996] (DVD)
Not everybody is, but I am a great fan of Baz Luhrmann. I didn't rate Moulin Rouge, but 'Romeo + Juliet' and 'Strictly Ballroom' are two of my favourite films of the 90s. Shakespeare purists
didn't like the translation into a postmodern setting and slagged
off what they saw as the film's quickfire, MTV mentality. Personally, I thought this was an invigorating, visually inventive way of ensuring that Shakespeare stays relevant for a young, modern-day audience. The sets are fantastic, the music is
memorable, and amongst all the glitter and flash, Leo and Claire Danes shine. This film (and 'Whats Eating Gilbert Grape') sold me on Leo di Caprio's acting talents - what a shame it's all been
downhill from there! See this marvellous film - you'll be inspired, moved and energised by it!

Offered by westworld-
Price: £12.98

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best Aussie albums ever, 14 Jan. 2003
This review is from: Diorama (Audio CD) has been a long time since an album has had such an emotional effect on me. I have approximately 300 Cd's in my collection and this rates up there with maybe 1 or 2 others as an all-time favourite. In the last 5 or so years my tastes have run more to electronic/dance music, but 'Diorama' has reminded me just how inspiring a good, powerful, passionate guitar-based album can be. Of course, this isn't just any old guitar album: it has stunning orchestration, poetic lyrics, and Daniel Johns' voice is incredible - snarling one minute on 'One Way Mule' and beautifully fragile the next on 'My Favourite Thing'. Diorama has just been voted Album of the Year here in Australia - I'd go beyond this to say one of the albums of the last ten years. Diorama represents a sort of quantum leap in Silverchair's music - there were hints of the new direction on 'Neon Ballroom' but I don't think anyone was expecting such maturity and beauty from someone who is only 22 or so years old. Magic - buy it now!

Henry and June: (From the Unexpurgated Diary of Anais Nin) (Penguin Modern Classics)
Henry and June: (From the Unexpurgated Diary of Anais Nin) (Penguin Modern Classics)
by AnaÔs Nin
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.48

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful and sensual writing from Anais Nin, 23 Aug. 2002
This was the first Anais Nin book I ever read and I was quite blown away by it. It sparked a deep interest in Nin's writing which I still feel, over ten years after having read "Henry and June" for the first time. This book traces Nin's sexual awakening as well as her discovery of the joy of living and writing in Paris in the early 1930s, and is written in an intimate, captivating and erotic tone - her descriptions of sexual desire are deeply affecting. Nin's style is not for everyone, but I can guarantee that "Henry and June" will be unlike anything else you've ever read.

Offered by Bridge_Records
Price: £4.95

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best British album of the 90s, 9 Aug. 2002
This review is from: Suede (Audio CD)
If I was stranded on a desert island for the rest of my life with only one disc to listen to, this would be it. Brett Anderson's voice is not everyone's cup of tea, and this ambitious, emotional, dramatic music is not for everyone. But for me, and without a doubt, Suede's debut album was the best album released in the 90s- British or otherwise. Almost ten years on, I still listen to it at least once a week. I am still waiting for the Suede album to match this one - Dog Man Star came close - let's hope "A New Morning" recaptures the brilliance!

Siouxsie And The Banshees: Twice Upon A Time [VHS]
Siouxsie And The Banshees: Twice Upon A Time [VHS]

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Banshees go psychedelic..., 22 Oct. 2001
Being a Banshees fan from way back it was great to
see these videos again, with Siouxsie at her gothic finest in 'Fireworks', 'Dear Prudence',
'Dazzle' and 'Cities in Dust'. Why oh why, though, has 'Swimming Horses' been omitted? 'Twice' traces the Banshees journey through psychedelic goth to the danciness of 'Peek-a-Boo' and 'Kiss them for me'. It's interesting to see Siouxsie's gradual change of image. This video would get four stars just on its 'memories' value alone, but there were only two Banshees videos with Robert Smith in them, and to exclude one is unforgivable!!

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