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R. Millington (UK)

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Wahl 9918-1117 Cord/ Cordless Grooming kit
Wahl 9918-1117 Cord/ Cordless Grooming kit
Price: £18.35

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't waste your money, 17 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
You get what you pay for: I thought I was grabbing a bargain ... I wasn't. I should have known it was going to be less than useful when it turned up in that moulded plastic packaging that you need a chainsaw to get through. It looked cheap ... it turned out to be rather tacky. I bought it to use on the stubble setting (if you're not quite sure how to put it together, don't rely on the 'instructions' - they're dire) and found it very frustrating. I suppose it might be okay if you have a head the size of a small potato; the head on this thing is so small you'll be standing in front of the mirror long after the last train has pulled out. Like I say, it performs okay if you're a hamster. In fact, it's only got two stars in case there are any rodents reading this. If you're human it's a one star. My last piece of kit has lasted 12 years - this lasted 12 days before it was binned.

Within Heaven's Gates
Within Heaven's Gates
by Rebecca Springer
Edition: Paperback
Price: £4.50

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Oh dear ..., 29 Oct. 2012
This review is from: Within Heaven's Gates (Paperback)
Christian propaganda. Only for the gullible (and yes, I do believe in God) and those who want support for their own very limited view of the divine. FAR better books out their on this subject.

Puccini: Tosca (Royal Opera House 2011) [Blu-ray] [2012]
Puccini: Tosca (Royal Opera House 2011) [Blu-ray] [2012]
Dvd ~ Angela Gheorghiu
Price: £18.99

5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Scarpia Ever!, 4 Oct. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Bryn Terfel is one of the finest singer/actors on the stage today, and his portrayal of Scarpia is masterley; the best I've ever seen ... and I've seen a lot! In fact, the casting is ideal, whilst Pappano's conducting is, as always, right on the money. The production is 'traditional' and very powerful.

There are many DVDs of Tosca on the market, but this is the best by a country mile.

The Art of Renée Fleming
The Art of Renée Fleming
Price: £7.24

1 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Also for Republicans!, 26 July 2012
I agree with everything Trev-R said, although being a staunch Republican I can't think of anything worse than watching Renee sing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace with a second-rater like Alfie Boe!! Enjoy the CD for what it is; a disc of one of the best sopranos of our day. Very tasteful ... unlike the Royal Family ...
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 20, 2012 10:58 PM BST

The Exorcist's Handbook
The Exorcist's Handbook
by Josephine McCarthy
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.95

7 of 24 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars X-Rated Harry Potter, 16 July 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
If you enjoyed Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone you'll love this book! I have to say that it is very readable and moderately entertaining. However, most of the claims are not only highly suspect, but also come with absolutely no supportive evidence. Indeed, the author does not at any stage explain how she arrives at her often preposterous conclusions, aside from intimating that she comes from a long line of priests and priestesses.

The author claims that it is possible to be `possessed' by everything from demons through to fairies (which apparently come out of vortexes), angels and evens gods and goddesses. She also divines the type of possessing entity through using a Tarot deck. Oh, and angels have absolutely no sense of humour and show signs of asberger syndrome! It's all a bit `airy-fairy' and `new-agey' ... and dangerous. `Dark' entities do exist but, if you're in trouble, following suggestions in this book could be like throwing petrol on a fire.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 29, 2012 8:16 PM BST

Dove: Adventures Of Pinocchio [Blu-ray] [2010] [Region Free]
Dove: Adventures Of Pinocchio [Blu-ray] [2010] [Region Free]
Dvd ~ David Parry
Offered by jim-exselecky
Price: £7.99

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Please ignore this review!, 22 Mar. 2012
Sorry, can't agree with other reviewers - I thought the Adventures of Pinocchio was weak and not a little boring. The libretto was particularly poor.

I do like Jonathan Dove and have enjoyed 'Tobias and the Angel' on CD, but this was just not my cup of tea, obviously a feeling not held by others. Indeed, the enjoyment of one particular opera over another (or anything else for that matter) is purely personal choice. I often buy an opera on DVD that has had terrible reviews and really enjoy it!

So if Pinocchio is your type of thing (aimed a children - but how many children watch opera?) you could really enjoy this, as the production and performances are uniformly excellent.

The fact is that until you see and hear it for yourself you won't know. All reviews are very personal and therefore complete hokkum!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 14, 2017 3:41 PM BST

Puccini: Madama Butterfly [Blu-ray] [2011] [Region Free]
Puccini: Madama Butterfly [Blu-ray] [2011] [Region Free]
Dvd ~ Fondatione Orchestra Regionale Delle Marche
Price: £29.99

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Casting Department should be shot!, 9 Mar. 2012
I must admit when I read a bad review about a DVD/Blue-ray disc I usually go out and buy it. I have a deep distrust of critics and have found that 'bad reviews' often translate into glorious performances! However, they've got me this time ... this is very poor indeed.

But let's start out on a positive note: the set was traditional and attractive (and very big!).

From there I'm afraid it's all downhill. Butterfly is a European woman (Raffaella Angeletti) in her 50s (?) and it shows. Don't get me wrong, I can suspend disbelief with the best of them when watching opera, but this was a step too far. The same can be said of Suzuki, a very tall lady with a decent voice and about as Japanese as Yorkshire Pudding. One reviewer commented on Angeletti's far from beautiful looks; I feel this is a bit unfair, as her case wasn't helped by the make-up in act one, which was just appalling (and at some angles downright scary). My gripe is not that she is not 15 ... it's that she hasn't been 15 for a long, long time!

Of course, it's impossible to get a 15 year old Butterfly, but certain older singers (Patricia Racette for the Met is a good example) allow you to suspend disbelief with relative ease. But why, when there are now so many excellent Chinese, Korean and Japanese singers out there, do we need Western performers (particularly when it is being filmed)?

Even so, the 'age thing' was not my biggest problem; my biggest problem was the total lack of any emotional link between the cast, especially Butterfly and Pinkerton (Massimiliano Pisapia). I think this is the worst Pinkerton I've seen; no acting ability whatsoever and an average voice. The best acting came from Nino Batatunashvili (Kate Pinkerton), but she of course is on stage for a very short period of time.

Vocally, this is not great across the board.

If you're not an emotional wreck at the end of this opera it's a very, very poor performance indeed - I wasn't. The two stars are for the set and, indeed, for Angeletti, who the casting department sent up the creek without a paddle.

La Boheme [Blu-ray] [2011]
La Boheme [Blu-ray] [2011]
Dvd ~ Alfie Boe
Offered by edinburghclassicalmusic
Price: £49.99

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Lacking Emotion, 17 Feb. 2012
I adore La Boheme, but this one almost completely lacks emotion - and what good is a La Boheme if you don't want to burst into tears from time to time! Alfie Boe's sweetly sung and modestly charming Rodolfo is simply not big enough, either vocally or dramatically. He has successfully found his niche as a 'cross-over' artist, and good luck to him, but he simply isn't good enough for the opera stage. I would suggest that most of the reviews here are from Alfie Boe fans, not opera fans, and there's nothing wrong with that (each to his own), but if you're an opera fan who expects quality singing be warned!

Bellini - Norma (Airapetian, Papian, Grigorian) [DVD] [2007] [Region 1] [NTSC]
Bellini - Norma (Airapetian, Papian, Grigorian) [DVD] [2007] [Region 1] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Vincenzo Bellini

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Awful ..., 31 Jan. 2012
The worst opera DVD I have ever seen ... and I've seen quite a few. The whole enterprise beggars belief - it's like a send-up. Simply terrible.

Berg: Lulu [DVD] [2011]
Berg: Lulu [DVD] [2011]
Dvd ~ Olivier Py
Price: £17.49

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Lulu Yet, 31 Jan. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Berg: Lulu [DVD] [2011] (DVD)
Amazing production, fantastic performances (particular Petibon) make this the Lulu to have. As a piece of music it's hard work (trying listenting to it on CD), but as a piece of theatre it is exceptional. A very definite five stars.

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