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Anvil! The Story of Anvil [DVD]
Anvil! The Story of Anvil [DVD]
Dvd ~ Anvil
Offered by 247dvd
Price: £3.94

60 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Admirable and Life-affirming, 10 May 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The previous reviews were excellent, especially in discussing the conflicts that arise in Anvil.

I admire Spinal Tap for how the situations, characters and most of all the music actually pay homage to the whole rock genre it so archly satirises. I approached Anvil suspecting it would be a diluted version of the original spoof, maybe even playing on the heavy metal clichés for cheap laughs, but that's not the case. Although Anvil initially promises to expose the failed dreams of two ageing and deluded rock musicians - and there are many uncomfortable and hilarious scenes - by the end of the film you only want success and recognition for them. Their passion, optimism and friendship deserve nothing less.

Beyond the human journey, the documentary is so well crafted, for example, the cohesion of the Japan angle, the understated meetings with other rock musicians and the suspense of the ending. I actually had a tear in my eye on several occasions such as when Lipps' wife is interviewed, but I think these aspects were made more poignant by the exquisitely excruciating Spinal Tap sequences - look out for the rendition of Thumb Hang, the `I'll tell you in one, no two, no three words' conversation, and the textured toilet painting.

I'm not a heavy metal fan but it's difficult to be cynical about these people or the music; this film is so admirable and life-affirming - it's just great.

The Royle Family - Christmas Special - The New Sofa [DVD]
The Royle Family - Christmas Special - The New Sofa [DVD]
Dvd ~ Caroline Aherne
Offered by clubbrasil1
Price: £9.99

22 of 36 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Lazy & Ridiculous, 27 Dec. 2008
I agree with the previous reviewer. This latest special was appalling. It lacked any subtlety and social commentary. With many of the original characters missing, the charm and complexity of the previous episodes was missing and this effort taints the reputation of what was a brilliant comedy series.

It spelt doom when the children were sent away on Christmas Day (No way!) and Denise and Dave got up at midday with the oversized turkey still frozen. All sympathy was lost. These characters, who you appreciate as being harmlessly vain or stupid, instantly became loathsome caricatures. It seemed like lazy writing.

Previously, the Royale Family worked because of the plausibility of it all. What these characters did was a twist on the mundanity. Here, however, their actions were just ridiculous. The cuppa soup sequence for example, was embarrassingly stupid. They agree to have more soup and so boiling water is poured into the bowls and ketchup mixed in. Any understated humour in the fact they used instant soup was destroyed.

What made the original series appealing and effective was how the characters so often offered hidden promise or talent. They might be trapped in that front room but their humour and hearts and sometimes aspirations, if not for themselves but for others, always shone through - think of the wedding episode or Nana's death. Here it was devoid of any hope. When Tom Courtenay arrived, it had more in common with an episode of Last of the Summer Wine, it was that bad.

There were some excellent lines which echoed their previous work but the tedious slapstick and repetitive jokes wrung out any wit. Am I being cynical in suspecting it was the lure of cash that resulted in this? Don't buy this DVD. Stick to the Complete Collection with the Queen of Sheba addition.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 17, 2009 12:41 PM GMT

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