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5 reviews in total 
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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
The Funniest Comedy series I have EVER seen, 5 January 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I suppose the mantra of the main character, Victor Meldrew (a Dickensian name, if ever there was one) would be, What could possibly happen to me next? The comedy arises from the most incredible things that happen to this poor soul in the retirement that he wished would be peaceful and uneventful. How should one react when, on returning from an event-filled vacation in a sunny clime, he can't immediately find his house, only to realize that it isn't there anymore? David Renwick is a master of comedic writing.

Richard Wilson and Annette Crosby play their roles perfectly. Many actors would appear hyper-excited or buffoonish in the situations that character Meldrew finds himself in. That is how it would probably be played in American sit-coms. Thank god a proposed American re-write of the series never got off the ground. And thankfully for all of us who have had the opportunity to see this series, Richard Wilson, who had been appearing in TV for 30 years, finally got the part that made him famous.

7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Best TV Comedy of the decade - British of course, 5 January 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Stumbled on to this amazing comedy series in the middle of the night on the BBC-America channel. They have this odd practice of broadcasting several episodes in a row - and good shows often played in the middle of the night - and then the shows disappear from their schedule, so one can not ever see any that have been missed. Pity. I missed the opening episode in this series of only 6 shows. One of the funniest comedy series I have seen. Then, in browsing the credits, I discovered why - it was written David Renwick, who also wrote the series, "One Foot in the Grave," which I believe to be the funniest comedy series of the last 20 years.

The comedy in this is very understated - hard to believe it came from the same pen of one who also wrote episodes for The Two Ronnies - and arises from the very nature of the characters themselves. Thankfully, there is no laugh track. Why do all the best comedies come from England? While England has produced a lot of trashy, unfunny comedies, among the comedy shows I have liked, the ratio of British to American is about 10:1.

ALL the roles are extremely wheel acted. Lead character Michale Landes does a wonderful job of playing his part in a very deadpan way - he IS the character he plays.

Possible spoiler here (although, how can one spoil comedy): One of the best comedic performances is by 75 year old Doreen Mantle, playing the mother of a long ago lover (recently deceased) of one of the main characters, coming to bring her the bequest of the videos the deceased boyfrined had made of all their sexual encounters.

26 out of 38 people found the following review useful:
A great film with no sex and no violence - so why the R rating?, 9 August 2006

When I went to see this film, I had no idea what it was about, other than that it had something to do with the 15th birthday of a latino girl. It was a preview and the ticket was free. I was very pleasantly surprised. This is a either a little gem of a movie or a gem of a little movie. It shows a little slice of life - centering around the (major) problems of members of a latino extended family in Los Angeles (mostly the younger members). I'm not latino, and I live in northern California - so I have no idea how accurate a picture it is, but the picture is nevertheless true to life. All the characters are very believable - a rather rare description of an American film these days. I have never heard of any of the actors, yet without exception the acting was superb. Every character seemed very real, like people I have known. Halfway through the film, I did not know where it would end - the story could still have turned in several different directions. With the exception of an anglo gay couple, all the characters spoke in both English and Spanish, as many Mexican-Americans do in California.

For some bizarre reason, one of the major characters - Herman (played by an actor named J.R. Cruz, is not listed in the credits in IMDb.

18 out of 42 people found the following review useful:
Was a good book that deserved a better screenplay, 26 July 2006

The film attempts to come off as a mystery or thriller, but Maupin is no Hitchcock. There was little in this movie that could captivate me (or I daresay, most of the others in the audience). Unlike good theatre or film, there was never a suspension of disbelief - I was unfortunately aware throughout that I was watching a film. There were points in the film where the (very well done) gimmicks of thrillerdom - creaking floors, strange noises, weird camera angles - almost brought on audience tittering, because there was nothing really to be afraid of. One is reminded of Jimmy Carter's battle with the rabbit - can a rabbit really be that threatening? Although the effects of thrillers were liberally applied, there was no thrill, because there was no fear, because there was not even an imagined evil force to deal with. If the producer had employed an experienced screenwriter instead of using the book's author(s), he might have arrived at a treatment of the mysterious subject matter that would have been much more engaging. What we have is the equivalent of a tragedy where the tragic event is only a torn dress - there is no there there. Robin Williams does a great job of acting , and it may be worth your while to see the film for this reason alone. He didn't do as good a job at script reading, or he probably would have passed on this one.

11 out of 28 people found the following review useful:
A silly title, but an Engaging Documentary, 16 July 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Yes, a ridiculous title, which almost deterred me from seeing it, but a noteworthy film that reveals why the electric cars that were available in the 90's disappeared from view. A subject I (and most other Americans, no doubt), never wondered about. Who knew that GM and Toyota actually destroyed all their electric cars, refusing to sell them to willing buyers, or that GM had access to a more efficient battery technology to enable those new electric cars, and then sold the rights to Exxon so that no company could make use of the battery technology until the patents run out? The filmmaker covered a very complex history in an amusing way. My only criticisms of the facts in the film are that the filmmaker kept referring to the role of "the government," when it was usually corrupt congressmen playing their usual role sloughing at their porcine troughs who were "the government", and that there was no mention of the thankfully re-called Governor Gray Davis who was the real power behind the California Air Resource Board when it made its historic decision.