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Kid [VHS]
Kid [VHS]

3.0 out of 5 stars Familiar themes but a decent film, 30 April 2014
This review is from: Kid [VHS] (VHS Tape)
As contemporary westerns go, this fifteen year old movie isnt too shabby. When a nameless young drifter steps off the bus in a desert town; little do the townsfolk know that he has a dark purpose in mind for some of their neighbours. The familiar themes of justice and secrecy are played out alongside vengeance, truth and freedom in this engaging b-movie. C Thomas Howell seems to be playing this as a straight western, he's the man with no name and barely a smile, although we do hear him laugh if memory serves. The screenplay does wind down at times but there's a certain charm in the interactions that the drifter has with two of the townsfolk and the Arizona setting looks locations are beautifully shot. Brian Austin Green lightens the mood as a music loving teenager add odds with the small town mentality who aids our hero in his quest for revenge. Sarah Trigger provides amiable distraction as the love interest. It has a couple of good action scenes, one in particular where he makes valuable use of a toilet cistern; the only gripe is that they're over too soon. The screenplay is familiar and you could write the ending yourself but I still remember enjoying this as undemanding entertainment.

One Foot In Hell [DVD] (1960)
One Foot In Hell [DVD] (1960)
Dvd ~ Alan Ladd
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £7.56

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Slow burner, 28 April 2014
Alan Ladd's last western is a simmering tale of vengeance where we see him take up the offer of deputy Sherrif so he can ruin a town and get revenge on those whose callousness led to the demise of his ailing wife. This slow burner was something of a surprise to me in that Ladd plays a nailed on anti-hero whose "howdy" smiles hide a stone cold killer. His plot to ruin the town turns the tale into a caper movie and I was all set for that until Aaron Spelling's script brought out the darkness of its leading man and revealed the title's real meaning. The movie explores themes such as acoholism, murder, greed and ultimately redemption which gave it a
certain freshness before it stumbled towards an offbeat ending.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 24, 2014 11:44 AM BST

Coronado [DVD]
Coronado [DVD]
Dvd ~ Kristin Dattilo
Price: £2.28

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars High Adventure indeed, 24 April 2014
This review is from: Coronado [DVD] (DVD)
This is a superb little adventure movie that barely anyone appears to have seen. The engaging leads have strong on screen chemistry and share some sparkling dialogue. There are some classy production values on display; high end sets, excellent cinematography, solid looking CGI with a rich colour palette play out alongside an orchestrated musical score reminiscent of that used in indiana jones. There are easy comparisons between this and Romancing the Stone and it should've made Kristin Datillo a huge star. The basic premise takes a wealthy socialite (Datillo) who after travelling to Europe to surprise her fiance, finds he isn't there, she then tracks him to the South American country of Coronado where she hooks up with a TV crew covering an armed rebellion who agree to take her in country to find her fiance.

From here on in, we're talking chases, train crashes, huge action set pieces in the jungle, bags of gunfights, amazing CGI gunship armadas and plenty of bickering and tongue in cheek humour between Datillo and the lead reporter.

Datillo makes a really appealing heroin who effortlessly carries the movie from centre stage; she has great comic timing, looks amazing and handles an action set piece like any hollywood A lister.

There is no reason for me to give this gushing praise, it's an honest review giving credit for a really enjoyable experience although I freely admit I've given it an extra star for Datillo.

If you like adventure movies and you're searching for something new.....you've just found it because this hidden gem is well worth tracking down.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 26, 2014 2:26 AM BST

I Am Soldier [DVD] [2014]
I Am Soldier [DVD] [2014]
Dvd ~ Ronnie Thompson
Offered by FREETIME
Price: £2.94

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An honest review, 23 April 2014
This review is from: I Am Soldier [DVD] [2014] (DVD)
The shooting style is quite different, almost a blend of docudrama and motion picture.The harsh landscape could've done with a more artful cinematographer to bring out its rugged and unforgiving nature. There are plenty of landscape shots but as a viewer they kept me distant when I really needed to feel the footfalls in the snow and ice on my breath.

Ronnie Thompson took on a impossible task, a film of this nature has to revisit elements of Ultimate Force and Who Dares Wins, both of which were well received and criticised in equal merit; UF was a popcorn piece whilst WDW erred towards the espionage angle rather than acton, neither of them pleased everybody. We've also had the ground breaking SAS "are you tough enough" series which was pretty compelling viewing for anyone with a passing interest. Added to that are comparisons with every similar movie made across the pond, The Finest Hour, Full Metal Jacket and GI Jane etc cover similar ground of recruitment and selection culminating in a military operation. I considered all of these past viewings while I watched the strangely titled I am Soldier.

As an accompaniment to the myriad of books on SAS selection this does a decent enough job. There are patches of dark humour; prospective recruits being directed to a derelict pub raised a wry smile. The parts of selection that we do get to see are well filmed, in good locations and we also get a couple of cast members we can actually invest in. Cliche is inevitable and although the story trods a few well worn paths they don't spoil things. My initial casting reservations were swept aside, Noel Clarke held a surprising amount of gravitas and was able to pull off the instructor role - I particularly like the moment when a candidate asks a spanner of a queston and Clarke just silently glares at him before carrying on. Alex Reid is a welcome addition, besides being able to act, she decorates the proceedings and also gets the best mission kill. Speaking of the mission, it's shoehorned into the screenplay with a couple of exposition scenes during the training segment; on paper its fine, the screenplay gives us a firefight and then like every action movie, some hand to hand combat.

If I'm honest, the mission segment is a little "small screen" which is odd because the training segment had enough budget to bring in three Chinooks - unless they were CGI which is even more impressive.

With the amount of written material currently covering the subject I can't imagine any movie giving us something genuinely new but this at least has a good go at offering a British perspective amongst some of the glamorised stuff churned out by Hollywood. After reading the polarised views of this movie I managed my expectations and went in well informed and whilst I didn't think it was brilliant, I'm glad I watched this all the same. I've not seen any of Ronnie Thompsons other work but I'm looking forward to watching Screwed and Tower Block.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 6, 2014 8:37 PM BST

Beverly Hills Cop [DVD] [1985]
Beverly Hills Cop [DVD] [1985]
Dvd ~ Eddie Murphy
Price: £2.23

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic crime comedy, 21 April 2014
This genre defining picture showcases Murphy at his best. He's athletic and funny but has more than enough emotional depth to switch from a wisecracking funster to a dogged and sincere detective in a heartbeat. He's surrounded by a strong ensemble cast who provide the menace and the funnies in equal measure. The story about a Detroit cop searching Beverly Hills to investigate the murder of an old friend doesn't offer a great leap in terms of storytelling but the parts come together in a sufficiently nuanced and well paced tale that provides more laughs and action than its legion of clones put together.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 24, 2014 10:28 PM BST

Taking of Beverly Hills [VHS]
Taking of Beverly Hills [VHS]

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Die soft, 21 April 2014
This die hard clone is a sad excuse for an action picture and was a major disappointment to me when it first came out. The basic premise is great; a fake toxic spill causes the evacuation of the worlds richest place so a gang of crooks can stage a huge robbery; added to that is the ex-quarterback hero who foils the plot. The ingredients are there, they're just lazily handled at every turn. No amount of cars turning over can make up for the lack of "proper" action. The soundtrack makes the most of contemporary tunes but it completely fails to use music to highten tension, or enhance what little action there is. In a split second final fight, Wahl and Davi fall over some furniture before the bad guy is done away with in spectacularly poor "is that it!" fashion. They also had the opportunity to use the "quarterback's arm" to take out a bad guy but it's as if I was behind the camera doing the take and also in the sound booth editing things together, trust me, it's that inept. This is a subjective review of course and I've already said I was disappointed, but I'm an action fan and just trying to be honest. If you're making your way through the action genre as I did then I'm hardly likely to dissuade you from seeing this but keep your expectations low......the film is worth a look for curiosity value anyway and for the sight of Ken Wahl's ridiculous mullet.

D-Tox [DVD] [2002]
D-Tox [DVD] [2002]
Dvd ~ Sylvester Stallone
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.55

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Stallone-lite!, 21 April 2014
This review is from: D-Tox [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Although Stallone's atmospheric slasher flick is lower on action than I've come to expect from him, it's high on the suspense stakes at times. The basic premise is that after a traumatic case culminating in the loss of a loved one, Stallone's FBI agent Malloy is checked into a remote rehab site to work through his problems. The site is a below ground, ex military compound which is cut off due to a heavy winter storm. Of course, that's not the end of his problems as a killer is stalking the halls bumping off the patients in all manner of ways. The cast of well known faces offer us plenty of suspects and Stallone is his watchable self. Apart from a rather unique setting, the screenplay doesn't offer anything new in terms of storytelling but the sets are decent and everyone puts in an honest performance. The movie culminates in a rather grizzly killing.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 6, 2014 8:46 PM BST

Offered by JAD Warehouse
Price: £7.95

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Head above water, 19 April 2014
With sets reminiscent of Alien and Outland this creature feature had a decent budget and a very dependable cast. The script is fine in terms of motivation and character development although seeing Daniel Stern as a stereotypical chauvinist feels a little off given his comedic presence in subsequent movies. The pacing is a little off at times and although the tension racks up during the final third it lacks a bit of punch. The monster is very much like "The Thing" in appearance which would've been a visual treat if we'd been able to see more of it. In terms of storytelling we don't get much background to the tale but Weller and the group are easy to route for. Amanda Pays and Lisa Elibacher dress the set as well as pulling off credible characters in a tale where corporate greed is as big an enemy as the hybrid monster lurking in the murky depths of the underwater drilling station. Not a bad effort at all really.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 28, 2014 3:38 PM GMT

Fifty/Fifty [DVD] [1992] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Fifty/Fifty [DVD] [1992] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Offered by Newtownvideo_EU
Price: £10.52

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 100% fun ride, 19 April 2014
The two likeable stars have massive on screen chemistry in this competent but forgotten comedy actioner. The writing team were responsible for the likes of Code of Silence and the Gauntlet and the director is the multi talented Charles Martin Smith. The premise echoes Dogs of War where two bickering mercs team up to overthrow a south american dictator but the emphasis is on comedy action rather than any dramatic tension. The script is littered with great dialogue and the duo remind me of Gregory Hines and Billy Crystal in Running Scared. The movie offers loads of action and its modest budget doesn't detract from a surprisingly enjoyable experience. Reportedly, this is the film Stallone and Russell dipped out on in favour of making Tango and Cash. This was barely screened at the cinema which is a shame because it isn't bad at all.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 25, 2014 7:14 AM BST

The Grid [DVD]
The Grid [DVD]
Dvd ~ Dylan McDermott
Price: £7.46

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 24 ish, 18 April 2014
This review is from: The Grid [DVD] (DVD)
In a similar vein to the above mentioned 24 this slick anglo american miniseries has a high end budget a first class cast and enough intrigue to keep you watching. Aside from McDermott and Marguiles who are excellent, we get a cracking cameo from our very own Bernard Hill whose character is right on the money and who gives us the best moment of the whole show. The show has a decent go at depicting an allied intelligence effort with different parties getting in on the act, it also goes some way to show the in fighting and political manoeuvring which famously grinds these efforts to a halt. Best of all though, you don't have to wait ages to get to the end!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 6, 2014 8:51 PM BST

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