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Profile for Mr. A. Whiteside > Reviews

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Mr. A. Whiteside "tonyjackie3" (uk)

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The Bletchley Circle Series 2 [DVD]
The Bletchley Circle Series 2 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Anna Maxwell Martin
Price: £9.99

4 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars What went wrong?, 26 Jan. 2014
I enjoyed the first series of 'The Bletchley Circle' and was pleased to see a second was to be shown. What a disappointment! The first three episodes have been boring and the acting a bit ropey apart from Anna Maxwell Martin. In fact I am so bored with it that I won't watch the final episode. The only reason I carried on watching was because of Anna and to the detrement of the programme it looks as though (SPOILER AHEAD) she has jumped ship.

There is a reasonable sense of the period of the time that the series is set but it just didn't hold my interest at all and the loss of my favourite character doesn't bode well at all. Will there be a third series? It depends on the ratings I suppose but I'm not sure that I will be watching which is a shame as I had high hopes.

Doc Martin Series 6 [DVD]
Doc Martin Series 6 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Martin Clunes
Price: £11.51

22 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This Doc's a tonic, 24 Jan. 2014
This review is from: Doc Martin Series 6 [DVD] (DVD)
The sixth series of Doc Martin was the best one since the excellent second series. I thought that the previous two series were good but not as good as the previous efforts. Apart from the first episode which descended into a bit of a farce, this was right at the top of it's game.

A bit more of Bert, not quite so much of PC Penhale, these were plus points and the acting was spot on as usual. Another good thing is the way the series ended which left the way open for a series seven and that can only be a bonus. The scenery was of course superb and you care about the character's and are keen to see how they progress. Doc Martin still has plenty of life in it yet.

Sherlock - Series 3 [DVD]
Sherlock - Series 3 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Benedict Cumberbatch
Price: £7.99

23 of 33 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Saved by the last episode, 19 Jan. 2014
This review is from: Sherlock - Series 3 [DVD] (DVD)
This has been the weakest series of 'Sherlock' so far in my humble opinion. At times it has seemed a little too clever for it's own good even though the partnership between Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman is as strong as ever. Plaudits also to the very talented Mark Gatiss whos shines as Mycroft and also contributes largely to the shows success.

Episode one was OK but the faked death of Sherlock was way overdone as was the Watson's reaction to the reappearance of Sherlock. Of course he would have been furious but it just went on and on and became annoying. The introduction of Watson's future wife wasn't as bad as I thought it would be though but this was an average episode.

Episode two was odd to say the least and the wedding reception was in serious danger of becoming unwatchable until it was redeemed a little. One of the weakest episodes in the entire three series, my fiancee actually fell asleep half way through.

Episode three was the best by a country mile with a slimeball villain, many twists and a compelling storyline. It saved the entire series in my opinion and showed that there is still plenty of mileage left. I just got the feeling that this was a series that tried to be too clever and I can't agree at all with the five star reviews on here simply because I considered it to be the weakest, at least until the final episode. I would give 3.5 if I could so will have to give three stars on balance. It is still one of the highlights of the TV year and I think this was just a dip in the high standards it has set.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 26, 2014 2:48 PM GMT

Dexter - The Final Season [DVD]
Dexter - The Final Season [DVD]
Dvd ~ Michael C. Hall
Offered by HarriBella.UK.Ltd
Price: £12.47

16 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A series too many?, 15 Jan. 2014

I have followed Dexter from the very start and some of the eight series have been a mixed bag. Season 4 was without doubt the best of the lot and featured the Trinity killer. It was a terrific series. Series 1 was great and I liked series 5 as well with the character of Lumen making a memorable impact. I felt that series 6 and 7 were OK but not great and the 12 episodes seemed to be padded out. The final series is what I am supposed to be reviewing here so I will concentrate on that.


The series was too long winded and even a little boring in places and most of the filler stories such as Vince suddenly finding out he was a Father added nothing at all. Dexter changed too much and all because of dreary Hannah. Letting off the brain surgeon would never had happened and he just didn't seem like the same character that we had grown to have a grudging respect for and things started to go wrong in season 7. The main cast were great as usual but a couple of guest spots weren't too good. Charlotte Rampling was hit and miss as Dr Vogel and Julian Sands was awful as Hannah's husband. I just felt that the series was losing it's way and developed into a soap opera. There was one instance in the final episode when little Harrison turned to Hannah and said 'I love you Hannah' and I cringed at the way it felt so out of place. The big problem for me was the character of Hannah ever since she appeared in season 7. She was one of the least plausable character's in the shows history. A much wanted criminal with several murders to her credit, she turns up as bold as brass, no disguise, not much attempt to hide, she was a weakness in my opinion and not the type of person that Dexter would sacrifice everything for. Dexter fell head over heels in love with her and Dexter in love meant Dexter becoming boring as his character started to change. I just didn't warm to Hannah and Lumen was a much better and stronger character. It's funny that for the first 3 or so series I couldn't stand Debra but by the end she was pretty much my favourite person in the show and huge credit to Jennifer Carpenter for consistantly great performances. Now I will give my take on the ending and some of it worked and a lot of it didn't. My biggest gripe was Hannah escaping and the only one to emerge virtually unscathed. She was a killer of innocent people and quite annoying a lot of the time. She didn't even seem too bothered when she read about Dexter's 'death'. Why kill off poor old tortured Debra in an almost underwhelming way just when she had hope in her life and what was that all about with Dexter dumping her in the ocean, a place that he reserves for the scum of the earth. Given the context of how things panned out, I think they did the right thing with Dexter choosing to live a tortured and empty life as punishment for the lives he had ruined. The easy way out would have been for him to throw himself off his boat to his doom but the choice to carry on living and to suffer felt correct, at least to me.

So the ending was frustrating but not a complete disaster. It certainly wasn't perfect but not quite as dreadful as so many people think it was. I would rather Hannah had been caught and arrested and maybe Dexter and Deb to have a suicide pact with both administering a fatal injection to each other at the same time. The writers had obviously decided that she wouldn't survive and this would have been a better way than the awful way they eventually killed off Debs in this episode. Harrison? I guess he would have gone off to live with Rita's parents. Blimey, I've rambled on a bit, sorry about that. To conclude then, Dexter was a programme that I will remember with fondness but it went on for maybe a couple of series too many. Micheal C Hall and Jennifer Carpenter made a great couple with fabulous chemistry and their acting was always spot on. It wasn't the ending I wanted but it did need to be bleak I suppose.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 8, 2014 6:38 PM BST

Sunrise - Murnau - Masters of Cinema series [DVD]
Sunrise - Murnau - Masters of Cinema series [DVD]
Dvd ~ George O'Brien

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant in places, not great elsewhere, 14 Jan. 2014
This was a DVD I bought purely based on the reputation of this movie. Listed in many silent movie web sites as one of the greatest silent films ever produced, I looked forward to watching this with keen anticipation. The first 30 minutes or so were terrific but the film lost it's way when the man and wife went to the city. Many of the images in the first third of this film are memorable with lot's of effects being used and I found the story to be gripping and it certainly held my attention. I could see why so many people rated this so highly as it was atmospheric and beautifully filmed. However, when the action moved on to the city I started to lose interest pretty quickly.

The gradual forgiveness of the wife was reasonably well done but became way too sentimental and unrealistic. Scenes of a drunken pig and several comedic moments seemed out of place to me and I couldn't really warm to the husband. He was a tormented soul for sure but also psychotic as he very nearly drowned his wife, took a knife to ward off a harmless chap who happened to flirt with his wife and very nearly murdered his lover. The action in the city went on for too long and became boring and a bit daft and I was relieved when the action returned to the lake and farm and the movie picked up again towards the end.

I can truly appreciate the long tracking shots, the focus on the actor's reactions and the overall look of the movie but the middle part was a drag and beacause of this I don't consider it a classic. Oh yes, Janet Gaynor's wig was awful and almost distracted from her fine performance. A good film but not a great one, sorry.

Last Tango in Halifax - Series 2 [DVD]
Last Tango in Halifax - Series 2 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Anne Reid
Price: £8.08

38 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A good old fashioned drama, 3 Jan. 2014
It is refreshing to see a drama sereis based around an older couple and 'Last Tango In Halifax' is a treat. Derek Jacobi and Anne Reid are a delight as are the supporting players. Sarah Lancashire and Nicola Walker are fine consistant performers and both are spot on here.

There is always enough going on to keep you interested and you genuinely care about the character's. Gillian's generally chaotic personal life has more downs than ups and her confession to Caroline will certainly keep things interesting. This is quality stuff and the good news is that a third series has already been commissioned so there will be lots more happiness, tears and great acting to come.

Downton Abbey: The London Season (Christmas Special 2013) [DVD]
Downton Abbey: The London Season (Christmas Special 2013) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Hugh Bonneville
Price: £5.00

25 of 40 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very long winded, 26 Dec. 2013
I am a fan of Downton Abbey and have been since the start. This latest Christmas special though was a big disappointment and a two hour run time was way too long. It was boring, really it was. I kept waiting for something to happen and not a lot did. I have always thought that downstairs was more interesting than upstairs but unfortunately there was much more going on upstairs in this episode. Well I say going on but that didn't mean much and the acting especially from Lady Mary and Cora was very wooden. Bringing in a couple of Hollwood big hitters didn't help either.

It did pick up a little towards the end but this was the least interesting episode of Downton that I have seen and though many fans might not agree with me, this was very long winded and most definitely overlong.

Roberts CD9960 CD FM/MW/LW Radio Cassette Player
Roberts CD9960 CD FM/MW/LW Radio Cassette Player
Price: £62.62

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A Christmas Flop!!!!!!!!!!!!!, 26 Dec. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I bought this as a Christmas present for my better half and the CD player went on the blink literally within five minutes. We put on the CD, it made a funny clicking noise and then proceeded to play at twice the normal speed. Michael Buble's Christmas album became Pinky and Perky's Christmas album within seconds!!!! We tried a couple of other CDs which were exactly the same.

To say I was disappointed with this product is an understatement to say the least and I am sending it back for a full refund. HUMBUG!!!!

What My Mother Taught Me [Explicit]
What My Mother Taught Me [Explicit]
Price: £2.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars She could be a major star, 23 Dec. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is by and large a good EP and showcases just what a fine voice Laura White has. I hadn't heard of her for ages so it is good to see that she may well be on the verge of making a deserved breakthrough. I personally prefer the slower numbers on here and there is little doubt that Laura has a touch of Amy Winehouse about her.

One to watch and she just needs a bit of luck because she sure has got the talent.

Homeland - Season 3 [DVD]
Homeland - Season 3 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Damian Lewis
Price: £8.00

80 of 86 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Patience is a virtue, 30 Nov. 2013
This review is from: Homeland - Season 3 [DVD] (DVD)
I normally never write a review before a series has completed it's run. This time however, I felt compelled to write a review now simply to try and counterbalance the one star reviews written quite a while ago. The series has nearly finished now and patience has been well and truly rewarded. There have been many twists and turns and yes, Carrie is a pain but Homeland wouldn't be the same without her.

I have to admit that I don't much care for Brodies daughter and her mumbling but by and large this has been a compelling series that leaves the viewer wondering what the hell is going on and what the hell is going to happen next. It finally looks as though Brodie will get some screen time which would be welcome and the plot is building upto a gripping climax.

So I am sorry for writing an early review and I will update this when the series ends. There have been times when I have thought that it might be losing it's way but 'Homeland' is still one of the best programmes on TV.

UPDATE: The series has now ended and my original rating stays at five stars. The final episode in particular was well acted and kept the viewer hooked. I suppose that belief had to be suspended several times during a few of the episodes but I still feel this is a top TV series. Will a fourth series work as well? I have doubts but time will tell.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 14, 2016 8:49 PM GMT

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