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Strangers On  A Train (1951) [DVD]
Strangers On A Train (1951) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Farley Granger
Price: £4.21

26 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Strange and Wonderful Accomplishment, 28 Feb. 2004
This film is absolute Hitchcock. The suspense, the tension, the whole atmosphere is mouth watering. The dialogue is utterly stunning and the cinematography is quite brilliant. I am running out of superlatives to describe this film but one more superb aspect must be mentioned; the performance by Robert Walker. As the slightly deranged, yet extremely intelligent, young man Walker is absolutely spectacular. His mannerism is so incredibly convincing it is shocking and without him my rating of this film would be completely different.
The essential plot behind the film is that of two strangers meeting on a train (one being the slightly insane Walker) with one of the two unwittingly landing himself in a difficult situation, where he finds he is an accessory to murder with nowhere to hide. As with all Hitchcock films it is the suspense that makes the film an absolute masterpiece of cinema. However, with this film many other elements (mainly Walker) push the bar even higher giving an indescribably good product.
The only minor let down in this film was Farley Granger's part which I found to be lacking slightly. This, however, cannot detract from its 5 star rating and this is still a must buy film, especially if you are a fan of the classics.

Red Rock West [DVD] [1993]
Red Rock West [DVD] [1993]
Dvd ~ Nicolas Cage
Offered by HalfpriceDVDS_FBA
Price: £16.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Rock Solid Thriller, 28 Feb. 2004
This review is from: Red Rock West [DVD] [1993] (DVD)
Put simply, 'Red Rock West' is a very entertaining film. The plot is reasonably intriguing with some interesting twists and some lovely screenplay. There is some nice camera work with some particularly good shots and the acting is also quite excellent. Nicolas Cage is on top form playing the role perfectly suited to someone of his calm, controlled manner with great realism. The performance from Lara Flynn Boyle is, however, a little unconvincing and lacks the realism that Cage seems to bring to his roles. The dialogue adds to this already impressive mix to make a successful member of the film industry.
The fundamental story behind this little escapade is that of a certain man who, while looking for some honest work, is mistaken for a hit man and sent to kill somebody's wife, The plot unfolds to deliver a couple of interesting developments along the way creating a good overall result. Director John Dahl seems to have created a winner with 'Red Rock West' which has been sorely under rated in its time. Cage uses his remarkable talents to make this into a film which should definitely have a larger audience than it has received.
I give this film a solid 4 stars due to Lara Flynn Boyle's disappointing performance. In closing, I would only actually suggest buying this film if you desperately like Nicolas Cage or this kind of story. Otherwise it is probably a better idea to save your money to spend on a timeless classic.

Time And Tide [DVD] [2001]
Time And Tide [DVD] [2001]
Dvd ~ Yau Lai To
Offered by NetsavesUK
Price: £2.19

1 of 38 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Time to learn Japanese, 28 Feb. 2004
This review is from: Time And Tide [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
I found 'Time and Tide' to be very different from many other Japanese action films in that it had a complicated plot which had some substance to it. However, while on the surface this may seem a good thing I found it to be confusing at times. I am writing this review as someone who does not speak Japanese and so have adjusted my rating accordingly. I thought the acting, music and camera work were all very well done but I found the film very difficult to watch for the simple reason that I speak English. The plot was difficult to follow using subtitles and I am sure that some of the dialogue lost its power in translation. Aside from this I cannot fault the film to a great degree, the director having done a very good job.
I will attempt to summarise the complicated plot in a few sentences. The story follows the actions of a retired mercenary (Wu Bai) and a bodyguard (Nicholas Tse), who incidentally has knocked up a lesbian cop, as they form an uneasy alliance to against some old friends of said mercenary who are in town. The plot then gets quite complicated and, using subtitles, becomes very hard to follow. The film in itself is without a doubt an excellent achievement with some absolutely superb action sequences and I'm sure I would have enjoyed it a great deal had both the translation and subtitles not detracted from the entertainment.
I would love to give this film 4 but can, unfortunately, only award 3 stars due solely to my language. I would strongly recommend this film to anyone who speaks Japanese but, unless you are willing to watch the film several times in order to understand the plot, I would not advise the purchase of the DVD to anyone who would need to make use of subtitles.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 29, 2011 4:58 PM GMT

The Player [DVD] [1992]
The Player [DVD] [1992]
Dvd ~ Tim Robbins
Offered by videosanddvds
Price: £18.49

12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Will the bad guy finally win?, 24 Feb. 2004
This review is from: The Player [DVD] [1992] (DVD)
'The Player' is a rare film that has very little violence but is quite excellent, eliminating the need for any such action. The story is intriguing and very entertaining but it is the performance by Tim Robbins that makes the film come to life. Director Robert Altman has made some good choices concerning script, cinematography and suspense which add up to make an extremely interesting piece of cinema. All of the actors are on top form with some entertaining cameos from several well known performers (e.g. Bruce Willis and Julia Roberts).
The fundamental story behind this thriller is that of a studio director who receives threatening letters. One thing leads to another and the plot progresses into a fascinating tale of murder. I don't want to give any more of the storyline away but it develops very well. Tim Robbins is, however, what makes this film brilliant. His perfect performance as the cold studio director is incredibly convincing and his facial expressions are stunning. Add to this the fine story and wonderful script and you have a marvellous 5 star film.
This is a must buy DVD if you are a fan of thrillers and even those who aren't should seriously consider the purchase. I would definitely recommend this DVD to anyone.

The Omega Man [DVD] [1971]
The Omega Man [DVD] [1971]
Dvd ~ Charlton Heston
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: £12.89

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Brilliant Adventure, 11 Feb. 2004
This review is from: The Omega Man [DVD] [1971] (DVD)
'The Omega Man' is a simple film but still makes for a very enjoyable experience. The acting is quite excellent with Charlton Heston and the under-rated Anthony Zerbe both playing their parts very well. Director Boris Sagal makes some good choices where cinematic shots and tension are concerned and some of the music is very well interspersed with the action on screen. However, what really makes this film worth watching is Heston's ability to convey is growing insanity that emerges from being all alone with no-one to talk to.
The central idea behind the film is that an enemy (unknown) has launched a deadly bio-weapon at the USA. This bacteria warfare has caused the entire country to be wiped out except for one man, Neville (Heston), and a load of mutants. The film follows Heston's attempts to annihilate the mutant menace and the discoveries he makes along the way. The film has a superb climax which is quite emotional adding to the depth of an already meaningful story.
Boris Sagal has created an undeniable success which is only let down by some unrealistic moments and some shoddy acting by Rosalind Cash. I would definitely suggest watching this film if the chance arises but I would only buy the DVD if it sounds like it would be a worthy addition to your collection.

The Jackal [DVD] [1998]
The Jackal [DVD] [1998]
Dvd ~ Bruce Willis
Price: £6.74

5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Day of the Disappointment, 10 Feb. 2004
This review is from: The Jackal [DVD] [1998] (DVD)
I watched this remake of 'The Jackal' with tentative anticipation having seen the masterpiece that was the original film. I could not have been much more dsappointed with the result and seriously wish the film have never polluted my television screen. I was absolutely appalled that a film with so much potential could turn into such a letdown. All of the actors were very poor and, although Bruce makes a valiant attempt, the part of the Jackal is completely unbelievable and devoid of theatrical energy.
The fundamental idea behind the film is that an assassin with no name, the most deadly in the world, is hired to kill the first lady. The film follows his preparations for the kill and the pursuit of Richard Gere. Compared to the original this film lacks everything. The suspense and anticipation are missing and the pathetic romantic story that attempts to add a twist actually just sinks the film to a lower level. I don't think there is another remake this bad in existence.
The only thing that saves this film from a one star rating is the fact that it is a remake of a truly superb film and as such has a decent plot. I would not recommend anyone to see this film, let alone buy the DVD, unless they are a fan of terrible cinematic failures.

The Mean Machine (aka The Longest Yard) [DVD]
The Mean Machine (aka The Longest Yard) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Burt Reynolds
Offered by ReNew Entertainment
Price: £8.47

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Mean Feat, 6 Feb. 2004
Anyone who sees this film and the remake will immediately be able to tell that this is the better of the two. In fact it is an excellent film. The actors all play their parts well and some of the dialogue is very impressive. There are moments of comedy, suspense and pain all of which add to the overall affect. The main success of the film, however, are the performances of Burt Reynolds and James Hampton who play their parts to perfection with the most excellent scenes down to the style of Hampton as the caretaker.
The fundamental idea behind the film is that the old American Football captain, who had to leave after shaving points off a game, is convicted and sent to prison. There he must train his own football team to play the guards at the request of the warden. Along the way there are many comic moments and some minor action sequences which are quite well done. There are some quite emotional moments which seem to add another dimension to the film making the final product a certain success.
The only problem with this otherwise superb film is that it can drag a bit at times and for this I take off a star. I would recommend buying this film to anyone who thinks they would enjoy it. However, there are many other films which are even better so this is not a must buy DVD.

Dead Calm [DVD] [1989]
Dead Calm [DVD] [1989]
Dvd ~ Nicole Kidman
Offered by ____THE_BEST_ON_DVD____
Price: £6.79

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A film that is anything but calm, 31 Jan. 2004
This review is from: Dead Calm [DVD] [1989] (DVD)
'Dead Calm is a film that had me taut with excitement from start to finish. The tension and frustration really built up throughout the film right up to the climax. The feeling of isolation experienced by the charaters is well exploited with some excellent cinematography. I found the performances by the three stars to be both convincing and entertaining especially the 'bad guy' played by Billy Zane who is suitably sinister and quite frightening.
The story is a simple (on the surface) tale of a young couple who go away to spend some quality time together on a sailing trip. One day they meet a sinking ship and rescue a single survivor. However, after investigation things seem to take a turn for the worse and the couple begin to understand the kind of man they took on board. While all the acting is good it is really the director's (Philip Noyce) masterful manipulation of the tension that will have you on the verge of a heart attack towards the finish.
Overall this film gets a solid 4 stars due to a lack of explanation and insight into some key points that I felt needed to be explored in more detail. I would recommend watching this film but, unless it takes your fancy, it isn't worth buying.

Risky Business [DVD]
Risky Business [DVD]
Dvd ~ Tom Cruise
Price: £7.77

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A risk that pays off, 29 Jan. 2004
This review is from: Risky Business [DVD] (DVD)
When I first heard what this film was about I thought it was a joke, then I thought it sounded terrible and then I saw the film and realised it was brilliant. There is no doubt in my mind that if Tom Cruise was not the main actor of this film it would have been a major failure. He plays the role of an awkward boy so perfectly that it makes the whole film come to life. This film has comedy, romance (although a little twisted) and a little bit of action that mix together to make a wonderful experience.
Basically, 'Risky Business' is about a teenager who, after his parents leave him alone and go on holiday, forms a tentative partnership with a call girl providing a 'service' for all of his friends. Things take a nasty turn when the pimp Guido comes to get his revenge on Cruise for stealing all of his business. Most of the roles are played to perfection and some of the lines are absolutely hilarious. The film builds to a tantalizing finish which is both funny and tense.
The only things that stopped me giving this film 5 stars were the parts of Cruise's parents which I found to be completely unbelievable. However, I would still recommend this film on DVD if it sounds like a something you would enjoy.

Shiri [2003] [DVD]
Shiri [2003] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Suk-kyu Han
Offered by HalfpriceDVDS_FBA
Price: £8.47

9 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Action packed with an unreal plot, 29 Jan. 2004
This review is from: Shiri [2003] [DVD] (DVD)
If you are a fan of Japanese action films you may be aware many of them involve a hit man in one way or another. Shiri is no exception to the rule. This film is full of intense action and confusing plot twists that will leave you more bewildered than impressed. However, so long as you don't expect anything more, you won't be disappointed. There are some nice set pieces and a reasonable dialogue throughout which makes the overall experience acceptable. Some of the performances are also quite good but could be much better.
The fundamental idea behind the film is that of two special agents who must foil a plot to assassinate the leaders of North and South Korea before time runs out. As well as this the director also explores the social lives of the two men and their emotions throughout the evnet. While on this race against time the pair is also faced with a deadly hit man to combat. This massive plot provides ample entertainment to keep anyone interested until the end.
The main, and crucial, flaw in this film is that it seems to lack any depth. Add to this plot twists that are just too crazy sometimes and what you're left with is a 3 star film which just isn't worth buying on DVD.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 13, 2012 10:12 PM BST

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