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Profile for Alec Trevalyan > Reviews

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Content by Alec Trevalyan
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Alec Trevalyan

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Glen Or Glenda [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Glen Or Glenda [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Price: £6.12

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great, 27 Mar. 2014
Ed Wood had a certain notoriety as a film maker although Tim Burton's biopic gave him back some dignity. So naturally his films today are viewed as the products of the worst director of all time. Certainly Brided of the Monster or Plan 9 are nothing but reasonably well executed b movies but Glen or Glenda is actually different. It would be an interesting experiment to show the film to people who have never heard of Ed Wood and tell them it's by an intellectual French film maker and give people the opportunity to judge the film without preconceptions. Would they see Lugosi's character and performance as camp or as legimitate surrealsim or his use of stock footage as a collage technique? It is very easy to make fun of this film because in these days the story seems trite and even camp. When watching this film you have to bear in mind that cross dressing and homosexuality (although the film actually makes the point that both are not necessarily related) were not only taboo topics but plainly illegal. Wood tells the autobiographic story of a heterosexual male who cross dresses and has to come to terms with this urge and learn to accept himself. To my knowledge that is the first film to give anyone termed a degenerate by society depth and dignity. Seeing Glen or Glenda simply as a camp classic draws away attention from the fact that Wood was a pioneer and also very courageous because he is in the lead role. The film itself is not really badly made except for the use of stock footage only loosely related to the film. The structure of the film is actually rather clever. The acting is more or less competent (certainly not worse than a lot of other b films I have watched), there are no wobbly sets and the story is coherent. Often fun has been made of Lugosi's character. I don't really see why. Yes, it's odd but Lugosi gives one hell of a charismatic performance and we don not generally call every film that employs surreal elements turkeys.

Bergerac: The Complete Collection [DVD] [1981]
Bergerac: The Complete Collection [DVD] [1981]
Dvd ~ John Nettles
Price: £34.99

7 of 34 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Uhm...., 19 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Okay, I know that Bergerac is one of the classic British TV series and I very much liked its predecessor Shoestring. However, I was rather disapointed. First I have to say that the quality of the picture does not really impress me if you compare it to such masterful restauration like The Sweeney. Secondly, I find the series itself very slow paced although the stories are actually quite good and original. All in all, Bergerac has all the excitement of watching paint dry and is an alternative for those fans of John Nettles who found the Midsomer Murders too exciting.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 20, 2015 12:31 PM BST

Lewis - Series 6 [DVD]
Lewis - Series 6 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Kevin Whately
Offered by MusicnMedia
Price: £12.44

4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre, 10 Aug. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Lewis - Series 6 [DVD] (DVD)
Although Lewis and Hathaway are very interesting and likable characters portrayed by two fantastic actors the sixth series fails to satisfy me. Overall the plots are not convincing. The series starts with an outlandish and not too exciting episode and seems to be carried by quirky characters rather than plot. The second episode is slightly more interesting but again very much character driven and comes up with an unexpected but also implausible solution. The third episode beggars belief. It builds up like a thriller in the style of "Seven" and comes to a ridiculous conclusion without any reasonable explanation as to the "why". The fourth episode sees an actor from our childhood reappearing and is the only well written mystery in the series although the second murder does not really make sense and is out of character for the murderer. All four episodes are university centered stories which is why they are a bit same-ish. Overall, I was disappointed.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 7, 2012 3:44 AM BST

Cover Stories
Cover Stories
Price: £13.10

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful album, 17 April 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Cover Stories (Audio CD)
It is the sign of a great artist to be able to teat songs as raw material and to create greatness even from mediocre material. Although Mari Wilson has done a lot of cover version, most notably "Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps", this album is a novel concept. She takes well known songs, often upbeat or even trivial numbers and turns them into ballads. In the hands of a minor singer this would a a recipe for disaster akin to Ian McKellen's rendition of "Like a Virgin" or some of the fun songs on "Girl Talk". However, here the result is quite amazing: Mari manages to render "I only wanna be with you" (also sung by Samantha Fox) into a touching song that gives you goose bumps. It is absolutely amazing what she creates with this raw material. The arrangements are minimalistic which is a good thing because it gives room to Mari's amazing voice and the interpretations she gives to the emotions in these songs. Overall this is a beautiful album of a mature singer at the height of her artistic development. The songs are beautiful, very enjoyable and it's a lot of fun to listen to some very good musicians playing around with songs everyone knows and yet creating something new.

John Major: The Autobiography
John Major: The Autobiography
by John Major
Edition: Paperback
Price: £20.00

22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great post war leader, 15 Jan. 2002
John Major was often ridiculed for his humble origins by left wing middle class journalists. He starts his autobiography by exploring the past of his family and the richness of his father's live, an account fascinating on its own. John Major as a person appears relatively late in the book but the reader quickly gets an impression of the ambitious young man driven by values, a sense of duty towards his family and the community. One begins to understand Major's own brand of liberal conservatism which is focused on the dignity of the individual. It is a sort of conservatism that was born from experiencing poverty and an ineffective welfare state. From his origins in local politics Major takes the reader into his carreer as an MP and thus paints a fascinating picture of post war Britain and some of the people who forged it. Major's style is very witty and analytical at the same time which makes the book a pleasure to read. The wealth of detail on macro-economic interdependencies make the book required reading for anyone who wants to understand politics. It emerges that Major was one of the most important Post-war Prime Ministers for two reasons: he launched the intiative for peace in Northern Ireland at a very great political if not personal risk thus breaking with taboos and he created a solid basis for local finance which lead to a ressurection of many British towns. Excellent reading!

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