Shop now Shop now Shop now Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Learn More Shop now Shop now Shop Fire Shop Kindle Shop now Shop now
Profile for Caleb Williams > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Caleb Williams
Top Reviewer Ranking: 16,485
Helpful Votes: 1969

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Caleb Williams (Liverpool)

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20
Up (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy)
Up (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy)
Dvd ~ Ed Asner

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As Expected, Brilliant., 8 April 2010
What an inspiring and yet, another genuinely enjoyable feature film from the artists at Disney & Pixar studios. I went into this having high hopes as I'm a massive fan of all Disney/Pixar collaborations with the exception of Wall-E which I simply did not enjoy for reasons I honestly cannot explain. I have to say my expectations were not only met, but surpassed. This not only warmed the heart but tickled me to the point I was in genuine tears of laughter. These types of films have developed a way of telling a story through the art of pictures; there is no need for words but music and moving images can tell just as much of a story than an entire script could. Even though I didn't enjoy Wall-E, this is something that I will praise it for. The makers have developed a way of telling a story without needing to explain it to you through dialogue. Well paced and well depicted animation is all you need to really tell a story and this is why I appreciated this that little bit more.

The movie tells the story of Carl Fredricksen an elderly man who, as a child, idolised explorer, Charles Muntz. Charles Muntz, while Carl was a young boy was discredited as a fraud by claiming to have discovered the bones of a giant bird which he found at Paradise Falls in South America. Determined to prove himself, Charles vows to not return until he has brought back a living specimen of the bird. Meanwhile, Carl meets Ellie, a feisty young girl with the same explorative dreams as Carl and they become fast friends. Then begins the silent homage to their life as it shows them becoming married and living their lives together still as in love as the day they first fell for one another. Sadly, Ellie, in her old age passes away and Carl is left alone in the home they bought and decorated together and around the home skyscrapers are being built with Carl being constantly pressured to sell his home to the company building the skyscrapers. After a series of more annoying events, Carl decides he's had enough and wants to go on that adventure to Paradise Falls him and Ellie always wanted to go on. But instead of just jumping on a plane, he fills his house with balloons and decides to fly there and take his house with him.

After the initial launch of the house, there is a lot more to the story as we are gradually introduced to Russell, a wilderness explorer aiming to achieve his "help the elderly" badge so he can become a senior Wilderness Explorer and in order to do this he is determined to help Carl with anything he needs help with. Then, when they make it to the wilderness we meet Kevin the giant bird and a talking dog named Dug. These are characters, although extremely different from one another, blend well together and actually make for a heart warming good guy ensemble cast. Some of the contents of the film are actually quite cliché. The grumpy old man who's grumpy because he never accomplished his dream and the young boy who has all the ambition in the world and just wants to impress his family. These are character traits indicative of the Disney genre, although that is no bad thing. The setting, although at times filled with vibrant colours, is actually quite bland and unimaginative, though that doesn't take anything away from the animation which, as you'd expect from a Pixar movie, is superb.

The comedy, again as you would expect, is very witty and at times unusual but always funny. The bizarre traits of the animal characters dragged along for the ride are both genuine and hysterical, such as the typical dog traits for Dug, but fitted with a human voice amplifies those traits to a comically terrific level. The voice acting of all involved is, again spot on. Although not voiced by major names, the voices fit the characters well; from the loveable old man Carl voiced by Edward Asner, to the adorable Russell voiced by the young talent new on the scene, Jordan Nagai. One of the voices, I wish to point out for personal reasons really took me by surprise as I only realised who this man really was through simply browsing Wikipedia, and I was overjoyed to discover who this man was. Christopher Plummer was the voice of Carl's hero, Charles Muntz. Now the name may not ring any bells with most modern film fans, but to those fans of the old movies, especially fans of musical, The Sound of Music you will recognise this man as Captain Von Trapp himself. That's a little nerdy joy for me, so I hope you'll forgive me for getting a little carried away.

Overall, there's nothing bad I can say about this film. It's got originality to it that you see all the time with the Pixar outings, yet it keeps to the same old formula Disney has made famous since its creation, yet the mixing styles never get boring. Sure, to some the formulaic layout of the Disney movies may get a tad tedious, and they have even grated on me from time to time, but I adore the Disney/Pixar collaborations simply because they're fun and remind me of the simpler time when I was a kid. This is another strong outing from the team and I would strongly recommend it to all film fans of all ages, as there's something there for everyone.

haribo maoam stripes
haribo maoam stripes
Offered by Electro World
Price: £7.12

7 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm addicted to these things, 14 Feb. 2010
This review is from: haribo maoam stripes (Misc.)
Products like this in the marketplace are the reason why I wish one day Amazon UK will take another page out of their American counterpart and start selling food items just so I wouldn't have to wait about 3 weeks for these to arrive, which they took.

If you love MAOAM then you should pick these up in the shops, otherwise you'll be waiting a long time to get them when ordering them from here. 5 stars simply for the product itself.

A4 Refill Pad (Large) - Ruled / Margin 200 Sheets 65GSM
A4 Refill Pad (Large) - Ruled / Margin 200 Sheets 65GSM

5.0 out of 5 stars Good., 14 Feb. 2010
I use these pads for note taking in university and are ones I would recommend for those who need to do a lot of note taking in whatever they do.

Hurt Locker [Blu-ray]
Hurt Locker [Blu-ray]
Dvd ~ Jeremy Renner
Offered by DVDBayFBA
Price: £5.47

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 14 Feb. 2010
This review is from: Hurt Locker [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
"The Hurt Locker" currently stands as the most critically acclaimed film of 2009 and after seeing it just this week I'm inclined to agree this acclamation wholeheartedly. This really is a work of art from start to finish and has now been moved to the top of my list of movies to own and cherish forever. Since its release it has won numerous awards and has 9 Academy award nominations which they will undoubtedly win come the ceremony in March. The cast comprises of unknowns, but are ones with very familiar faces as, after doing a bit of research, a few of the actors have had very minor roles in other TV shows and movies so if this will be their leap to the big time, then it's well deserved.

During the early stages of the Iraq war in 2004, this film follows a 3 member EOD (Explosives Ordinance Disposal) unit as they go about their missions in providing cover for one member, Sergeant First Class William James (Jeremy Renner) while he disarms IED's (Improvised Explosive Devices. James' behaviour in rushing into the blast radius without sending in the bomb disposal robot first leads to him being labelled reckless by his fellow officers, Sergeant JT Sanborn (Anthony Mackie) and Specialist Owen Eldridge (Brian Geraghty). This image of a reckless officer has a negative effect on the team dynamic and as the film progresses you become more and more aware of the individual reasons why each character is the way he is.

This film doesn't really follow a plot in the sense of that the team must solve some form of deep seeded puzzle, or there is a mastermind behind the bombs that this unit specifically dealt with. It simply follows a trio of officers as they do the same job which is being done for real in Iraq and touches upon how those officers deal with the situations in which they find themselves. The director, Kathryn Bigelow, wanted the film to immerse the viewer into something that was "Raw, immediate and Visceral". That it certainly achieved perfectly as although some of the scenes may seem slow, they're slow for a purpose. It wants you to be aware that anything can change at any time and although there may be a slight stint of calm and silence, that can change in an instant and it was brilliantly done.

Although some of the actors may be better known than others, I'm happy in a way that it isn't a cast of megastars playing these roles. In a movie like this, if you had a cast that consisted of the likes of Brad Pitt, Matt Damon or Tom Cruise, for example, then the film simply wouldn't have the same impact. You would watch it for another purpose, rather than simply watching it for the story and that is why there appears to be this revolution of sorts with more and more of the most critically successful films containing unknown or little known actors rather than the big names. The film was shot in both Jordan and Kuwait and had a really authentic look and feel to it and the film is overall well deserving of any praise which it receives.

However, there is one gripe I have about this film and it is one which was touched upon by other reviewers who unfairly gave it 1 star just due to this point alone. The way in which British servicemen were portrayed around the middle of the film was terribly offensive and overly typical to the point I had expected it to happen at some point during the film before even switching it on. There have been mountains of films that have done this and this will not be the last to make such a mistake, on the other side of the argument though, you would almost expect an English film to do the same thing to the Americans regardless of how serious the film is supposed to be. Although I did find this slightly offensive, I didn't let this damage my view of the film as a whole which I still support as being sublime.

Shockingly brilliant and although it let me down in one particular scene, the film overall was superb. On Blu-Ray this film is especially done justice as the detail and resolution just makes it visually superb in its own right. Buy it, rent it or watch it at a friend's house. This is definitely a film to see.

The American Presidents: Biographies of the Chief Executives from George Washington Through Barack Obama
The American Presidents: Biographies of the Chief Executives from George Washington Through Barack Obama
by David C. Whitney & Robin Vaughn Whitney
Edition: Hardcover

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully Accessible, 1 Feb. 2010
If only a book like this existed for the British Prime Ministers, then I would be happy. This is a wonderful book that gives brief biographical accounts of the lives of each president of the United States from George Washington to Barack Obama. It's an objective approach to the lives of the presidents, which is a good thing for a book that without doubt explores the lives of some of the more controversial presidents. Very factual and very interesting, for those who at least show a passing interest in the subject of the American presidency, this is also a great reference point that will give you guidance if you want to know more about a particular subject.

Inglourious Basterds [DVD] (2009)
Inglourious Basterds [DVD] (2009)
Dvd ~ Brad Pitt
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.89

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Masterful, 20 Jan. 2010
I'm a big fan of Tarantino. He's always been a man I've respected as a film maker and his collection of films sit comfortably in my list of favourite films of all time. This is one he's been working on for over a decade, refining the script to create his ultimate masterpiece that he was hoping would match the perfection of Pulp Fiction. This sincerely did not disappoint and the wait made it even more special when I got my chance to see it for the first time. Tarantino is sincerely a master of cinema and although some of his more recent films, amongst critics, are generally hit and miss, this is genuinely a masterpiece and displays the man's ability on top form once again.

The story unfolds over 5 chapters: Once upon a time... In Nazi occupied France; Inglourious Basterds; A German Night in Paris; Operation Kino and Revenge of the Giant Face. It tells of two separate plots to assassinate Hitler at the same time and place. On the one side we have Emmanuelle Mimieux, a cinema owner with revenge in her heart as her previous name was Shoshanna Dreyfus and she is the only surviving member of her family who were murdered by SS Colonel Hans Landa. The other side focuses on a group lead by Lieutenant Aldo Raine known as the Basterds are a group of Nazi killers who just enjoy killing Nazi's until they find out about a plan to hold a propaganda film premiere in the cinema owned by Emanuelle in which the Fuehrer will be in attendance. This group of Nazi killers are determined to kill the head Nazi, but the question is, will they even get close to their goal?

One of Tarantino's main talents is that he has an ear for intense dialogue and can create a lengthy scene which has only that and allow the viewer to be gripped throughout. This is not different as the dialogue in this film is intense and filled with dynamic mood changes and superb acting. Sure, the fact that the dialogue is heavy with subtitles, they work in setting an authentic mood and rather than having the actors play Germans or Frenchmen talking to their fellow countrymen in American accents which would diminish the mood entirely, I personally preferred the subtitles. The first scene of the movie I see it as acknowledging this possibility of subtitle overkill by having Colonel Landa request that the opposing character Perrier LaPadite switch to English as his French was exhausted. Although there was a plot justification for this switch, it was a clever and I found it to be quite a humorous aspect.

The acting is sublime, it really is. There are moments when it is slightly camp and the stereotypical traits are a bit over -exaggerated but they add a little relief to what is quite an intense film throughout. The cast are well fitted to their roles, especially Christopher Waltz as "The Jew Hunter" Hans Landa and Brad Pitt as Aldo "The Apache" Raine. They are both comically and seriously believable in their own right and add a lot to the film individually. The talk that Waltz should gain an academy award for his role in this film is well deserved and I pray he receives that nomination and ultimately the award. The supporting cast members such as Eli Roth, Mike Myers, Diane Kruger, Melanie Laurent and Martin Wuttke add their own individual flairs to the film to make it a genuinely pleasant experience.

There is also certainly a western movie style influence with the film and you know it's a Tarantino film the minute it begins. He has an individuality with his films that allows you to notice instantly that he had a hand in putting this masterpiece together. This is definitely an Oscar worthy film that I would strongly recommend to anybody with an ounce of respect for truly marvellous film making. For the HD fans there are the elements that take advantage of this, especially with the beautifully vibrant scenery. So get it, you will not be disappointed.

Star Trek (3-Disc Digital Copy Special Edition) [Blu-ray] [2009]
Star Trek (3-Disc Digital Copy Special Edition) [Blu-ray] [2009]
Dvd ~ Chris Pine

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Star Trek - How to revive a franchise, 17 Jan. 2010
JJ Abrams took on the project of reinventing the Star Trek universe to make it more appealing to a wider audience, while at the same time retaining the core Star Trek fan base. Although Abrams has been around for a long time, having a presence in Movie and Television in one way or another, he's only really rocketed to a higher status thanks to the success of the hit TV show Lost. Abrams has a sharp eye for what makes a movie work, no matter what type of genre that may be a part of. To take on the Trek franchise was an ambitious move by Abrams, but setting it on an alternate timeline allowed Abrams his own creative freedom within the universe whilst keeping the old Trek fans happy by not manipulating the original Trek timeline.

The film kicks off the USS Kelvin approaching a mysterious "lightning storm" in space. We discover quite quickly that this is not a mysterious anomaly, but a Black Hole, and out of it comes a massive Romulan ship captained by Nero (Eric Bana), a man filled with hate and looking for revenge against Ambassador Spock (Leonard Nimoy). Nero orders the destruction of the USS Kelvin, led by Acting Captain George Kirk (Chris Hemsworth). To save his wife, Winona (Jennifer Morrison) and their currently unborn son, Kirk orders their evacuation whilst he stays behind and holds the Romulan ship off to allow her to escape and give birth to their son.

Fast forward a number of years and we're introduced to an adult James Tiberius Kirk (Chris Pine), an intelligent and cocky womaniser who seems to have no real aim or purpose in life. After a bar fight over the beautiful Nyota Uhura (Zoey Saldana) he's approached by Captain Christopher Pike (Bruce Greenwood) who challenges him to emulate his father's heroic reputation. Kirk joins Starfleet and meets a new friend in Leonard `Bones' McCoy (Karl Urban) and a new and more challenging rival in Spock (Zachary Quinto). Their first mission together on the USS Enterprise, with other crew members including Hikaru Sulu (John Cho) and Pavel Chekov (Anton Yelchin), is investigating a familiar anomaly, which lead to the death of George Kirk, appearing not too far from the planet Vulcan.

The story was both interesting and epic in equal measure. The cast fits the film really well. Pine emulates the arrogance and attitude of Shatner's Captain Kirk well. The youth, intelligence and vigour of the character in this time period comes across well and I know that going forward, the character, played by Pine can only develop to become better and a more convincing captain. Zachary Quinto was an inspired choice to play the iconic Spock as; at that point Quinto was most famous for playing the dark and disturbing Sylar in the TV show, Heroes. He matches the personality and conflicting behaviours attributed to him by both his human and Vulcan parentage.

Other supporting cast members fill their roles well and each contributes their own individuality to the piece that makes it work. Simon Pegg as Scotty works well for what is a relatively small role in the bigger picture of the film, although the accent itself is nothing to shout and scream about. There was one disappointment, which was Eric Bana's role as Nero. The character is supposed to be a maniac driven by his want for revenge against Spock, but it came across that Bana didn't care about the role. He seemed uninterested in attempting to portray any really intense emotion and that dragged the film down. This is no criticism of Bana's overall acting ability as I'm a great fan of his other work, but his role as Nero was wholly disappointing.

The look and feel of the film puts across the new Abrams vision of the Star Trek universe making it both sleeker and more real when it came to such aspects as seeing the bowels of the Enterprise and other planetary locations such as Vulcan. The battle sequences are intense and well put together and it's cool to see the old style gadgets, and firepower you may be familiar with from the old series such as the communicator, phasers and Uhura's earpiece. There are a number of nods to the old series, which the loyal fans will appreciate and enjoy, and there's enough action, explosions and comedy combined to make a really enjoyable film.

Definitely worth the watch.

Paranormal Activity [DVD]
Paranormal Activity [DVD]
Dvd ~ Katie Featherston
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.70

11 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sincerely The Most Frightening Movie I Have Ever Seen, 31 Dec. 2009
This review is from: Paranormal Activity [DVD] (DVD)
I was dragged to see this by a friend of mine against my will and quite frankly I'm thinking of no longer being friends with that person. To sum it up in one word before I relive the horror. This was terrifying. Not in the jumpy or gory horror movie way that you may be used to, but in the creepy suspense filled way. Although it was filled with cliché moments and towards the end became a bit too over the top, it was still a film that managed to encapsulate the pure horror of what you were witnessing and retain it throughout.

This is a "lost footage" movie which is one that seems to be a genre that is developing quite a trend in recent years. This tells the story of Micah and his girlfriend Katie, a couple "engaged to be engaged". Katie has mentioned that she has been haunted by a presence all her life and since she has moved in with Micah he has been determined to capture this "Paranormal Activity" on tape. The couple, after catching a few strange things, bring in a psychic who warns them that this isn't a ghost but a demon which shouldn't be messed with or things will get worse.

Micah is determined not to let this thing beat them or be around forever so he decides that he's going to challenge the demon to communicate with them so he can give it what it wants in the hope that it will go away (see the cliché?) Micah brings a Ouija board into the house in an attempt to communicate with it, but Katie, being terrified of playing with this type of thing is furious.

I'll leave it there as I fear I've given away too much as it is. The film is entirely from the one video camera perspective and over time the events get weirder and weirder gradually building the suspense to what you know will be a culmination of challenging this spirit or demon. The acting is sublime, it really is. From the girl playing Katie that is, the guy playing Micah is an interchangeable character that could be played just as well by anyone.

The pacing of the film is near perfect. A previous review said that the pace was too slow, well I think this person was missing the whole point. It was slow and remained slow throughout as it is not an action/horror movie, it's a suspense/horror shot from the perspective of a couple experiencing this as it happens. It retained no devices to set the mood or anything like that, it allowed you to witness these events and fear for the safety of those living in the house. The couple did look like a couple and I found myself being scared for them and their experience which is an achievement.

A golden film that knocks all the new horror movies out the water and presents something fresh and new. Maybe there's something to this lost footage type movie after all.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 4, 2010 9:56 AM BST

The Making of Modern Britain: From Queen Victoria to V.E. Day: 1
The Making of Modern Britain: From Queen Victoria to V.E. Day: 1
by Andrew Marr
Edition: Hardcover

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Fantastic Story Teller, 21 Dec. 2009
Like other reviews have pointed out, History can, at times, be quite a boring subject, especially when you're being taught it by a person who has the personality of a table. Andrew Marr doesn't have that, he is without a doubt the best story teller of historical periods I personally have ever encountered. He makes it interesting and fun but sadly, Marr is let down by the same failings that cursed his last book and that is the factual errors that you come to notice. I'm aware that Marr's book is not meant to be any particular authority on history, and in fact is just meant to be an entertaining read to give you some overview of key historical events. However, you do expect the facts around the events and people involved to be accurate, otherwise this book can only be considered historical fiction.

This is sort of a prequel to his last book as he now goes back further in time to the period ending with the death of Queen Victoria, up to the point of the end of the Second World War. Covering most influential events, social, political and economic. But he truly shines when talking about the tragedies of the wars. Obviously, with us currently going through a terrible war now, he needs to deal with the historical subject of war with sensitivity and understanding of the plight of the soldiers of that time. He describes the setting with such raw brutality I found myself questioning the truth of his statements, yet in the back of my mind I knew the story he was telling was true.

He's an excellent storyteller, one of the best in fact. The accompanying documentary series is just sublime as he can bring these historical events to life by injecting a new lease of life into them. For those who have a passing interest in history or for those looking for brief reference points for further study then this is a worthy book to have in any collection.

Assassin's Creed II (PS3)
Assassin's Creed II (PS3)
Offered by DVDBayFBA
Price: £7.01

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Amazing Game, 14 Dec. 2009
I loved the first instalment and I truly cannot put into words how excited I was for the second instalment, especially when considering the rumours going around that Ubisoft had successfully addressed some of the key flaws in the first. Taking us back to the times of the Third Crusade in the first Assassin's Creed was an inspired choice, yet the newly created free run system and the immense landscapes and detailed ancient cities made for a truly unique gaming experience. The problem with this free running, exploration and high climbing was that it was the same thing over and over again and the repetition of the original game spoiled the overall experience. Also, the lack of any real interesting story telling or mission progression killed the excitement once you became used to the unique surroundings and control system. Assassin's Creed 2 addressed all these issues and presented the best bits of AC1, took away the worst parts and put in something else. This time it isn't just investigate your target and kill when you have eavesdropped, pick pocketed and bullied the info from those you have to get the information from. It is a full blown story worthy of a James Cameron masterpiece.

It is the year 2012 shortly after the ending of the original game and Desmond Miles is still the prisoner of Abstergo. After being released by Lucy Miles, the assistant of the professor in the first game, they go to a secret hideout where Desmond will be placed in another animus machine to explore the past life of his Italian descendant, Ezio Auditore da Firenze. This takes Desmond back to 15th century renaissance Italy and introduces you to some key players of that historical era. Going back to Ezio's time is not simply just done as a means of exploring the past and finding out more about the pieces of Eden but it is more about taking advantage of the bleeding effect which is in preparation for the battle that is to come with the Knights Templar. Ezio's story begins as him being the typical pretty boy always getting him into mischief, yet things take a turn for the worst very quickly as his father and two brothers are betrayed and executed by a close friend under a charge of conspiracy. As Ezio looks to seek revenge and find out who was behind this betrayal, he unravels an even bigger conspiracy involving the Knights Templar, The Pieces of Eden and even the Pope.

The first Assassin's Creed game was a great one in its own right but the gameplay in itself was massively flawed. Although the exploration element was fun and the combat system unique and interesting, it became boring very quickly indeed. The fact that for every target, before you were given the chance to assassinate them, you had to eavesdrop; pickpocket and bully people into providing information almost drained the game of any fun element and in some senses made it a chore to play. Ubisoft have addressed this by getting rid of it altogether. They have instead replaced it with a more linear storyline and given you additional assassination, beat up and race side missions as an option. Aside from that there are a number of different options that make for a more interesting experience. The introduction of a currency system allows for a more immersive experience in which you can buy and customise your armour and clothing. You can also employ the help of some allies including courtesan's, thieves and an army of fighters to distract the guards from bothering you while you try and eliminate your enemies.

This is truly an immense game. The personality of the renaissance time cities such as Florence is truly perfect. The exploration element is also turned up a notch as there is treasure and secret underground lairs to explore and unlock another present from the past. There is also a cool cribs (I know, I couldn't think of anything else to label it as) type element to the game known as the villa. This is a place where you ultimately become the ruler and owner of this small city and it is your duty to improve its stores and other attractions to bring in travellers. As the villa becomes more popular the town literally brightens up and becomes busier as a result of your hard work and dedication to bring in the cash. This also generates a decent little earner for you much like the business element in the Grand Theft Auto series which you would collect the earnings from your business when it reached its maximum amount. The inclusion of Leonardo Da Vinci and the ability to purchase paintings reminds you of the historical element of the game which, much like the first, makes me want to learn a little bit more about the era and I sincerely will be doing so.

The historical element, the customisation element, the currency, side missions and the whole game in general is truly a work of art. I would highly recommend it to anyone who was a fan of the original but would especially recommend it for those who haven't even played the original. There's so much more I could have spoken about, but it would be better that I let the reader discover all the brilliance of this game on their own as it would be much more rewarding as a result. Buy this game, I promise you will not be disappointed.

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20