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steve-barry-1

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13 reviews in total 
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Dutch Girls (1985) (TV)
5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
As a 16 year old, this was superb, 24 July 2007

I remembered this TV drama after searching IMDb for facts about Timothy Spall. I had no idea Bill Paterson and Colin Firth were in it too. OK, I was 16, totally besotted with a girl called Julie, so watching this show really made me wistful for female company! As I remember it, the hockey team board a ferry to Holland to play another school team, however, their training consists of smoking Silk Cut, Drinking and falling in love with Dutch Girls. I also seem to remember one of the characters drilling holes on his hockey stick and filling it with solder or some melted metal to aid his shots. I also remember Timothy Spall staying at some Dutch family's house and forgetting to flush the toilet after doing the no.2 and horrifying the Mother of the house when she goes in after him.

3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
A wonderful classic, 5 June 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Henry Palfrey is one of life's bridesmaids. Nothing ever is in his control. His work is a case in point. He is the boss of an unidentified London family firm but his long-serving deputy makes all the decisions for him. He meets the beautiful April Smith (well, actually he knocks her over running for a bus) and takes her for dinner. But even that doesn't run smoothly as his deputy has wrinkled his nose at his choice of eatery and has, presumably, deliberately got his name wrong for the reservation. Ultimately, his great rival Raymond Delauney, who is a suave and sophisticated lounge lizard takes control of the situation and woos April successfully. Even buying a car results in being ripped-off for some awful old banger. However, upon successfully attending a residential course in the West Country about how to get your revenge, Palfrey turns the tables on everyone and wins the heart of April.

One of my favourite films. It is a joy to watch, it is well crafted and hearkens back to a less congested, more innocent way of life. Perfect Saturday afternoon on the sofa material.

1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
I'm a convert to the no.23 theory. Yes, I'm unhealthily unbalanced, 6 March 2007

I enjoyed this film, although I was baffled about the relevance of the number 23 throughout history, and how one man can suddenly realise it is affecting him directly. Never mind, I thought to myself, let's just enjoy it for what it is, after all, there's only repeats on TV. So I watched and watched and watched. Now I'm a convert. I am convinced that the number 23 guides me. I was 23 when I met my wife. I always drive at 23 miles per hour in 30 mph zones, just to be on the safe side (no speeding tickets), I watched Shaun of the dead 23 times (until last night, but I won't count that one - I was drunk), when I get up in the morning I have 2 slices of toast + 1 apple + 2 cups of tea (2 + (1+2) = 23!) My birthday is 16th July (16+7=23). There may be some truth after all, I thought. So how could I randomly take dates,numbers, etc., and still get the number 23? My final test was the most compelling of all. I discovered my maternal grandmothers date of birth (4th September 1916) 4+9+1916=1929, on my wedding anniversary (celebrated recently) I added the amount of years I've been married, 10 (1929+10=1939), also I have been reading about the Titanic recently so I took away the year the titanic sank (1912 - 1939-1912=27, then finally took away the score out of 1,000,000,000 which I rated this film, 1, I did this four times just to be sure (27-4=23) and there you have it! I must stop writing now as a very nice man dressed in white has to re-strap me in my lovely tight jacket and take away my laptop. He says I'm getting better, but when I said I loved this film he smiled and upped my dosage.

2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Insane, 5 March 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Mr Jolly lives next door is one of my favourite Comic Strip Presents episodes. Starring Ade Edmondson and Rik Mayall as two very seedy, alcoholic escort agency owners. Unfortunately their escort agency has no girls on the books, just them who turn up at the appointment and get as drunk as possible. The episode opens with them being taken to a morgue to identify a body, a former client of theirs. A few clues in the scene reveal that they played a falling out of the window game when very drunk, unfortunately they were on the 18th floor. Getting back to their seedy offices, they drink the last of their gin, so set about their home brew, which they started the day before. We meet Mr Jolly, who has the office next door to "Dreamytime Escorts" and we rapidly discover that he is a psychopathic murderer, who runs a business fronting his actions called "Little fluffy Toys".

The Escorts get a call from a Japanese businessman at the Holiday Inn, and take him around London from pub to pub. Eventually they intercept a message for Mr Jolly, and £3000, to take our Nicholas Parsons. They rapidly spend all the money on Gin in one afternoon. Realising Mr Jolly may not be terribly happy that they've spent all his money, they decide to take Nicholas out themselves. However Gangster, Mr Lovebucket, follows them to the Dorchester to make sure they do the job, and the next day, he's not very happy that Parsons is still alive.

Favourite quotes:

Rik Mayall: (Being shot at by Mr Lovebucket's gang) Quick! Quick! Get me out of here before I s**t my pants! (Sound of a large f*rt) Too Late!

Mr Lovebucket: Now, where is Mr Jolly? Mr Jolly: I'm Mr Jolly Gangster #1: You're not Mr Jolly. Mr Jolly: I am Jolly Gangster #2: You don't look very Jolly Mr Jolly: Look, just because my second name is Jolly, doesn't mean I have to be Jolly all the f*****g time!

Rik Mayall: Right, that's it, we surrender! Mr Lovebucket: Which one of you is Mr Jolly? Rik Mayall: I am Mr Jolly, or rather HE is Mr Jolly. (Points to Ade Edmondson) Mr Jolly, someone to see you. Can I have a name please? Mr Lovebucket: Quiet you! Rik Mayall: It's a Mr Quietyou to see you. Er.. Hungarian I think.

1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Never taken a short-cut before?, 26 February 2007
10/10

Shaun is a loser. Of that there is no doubt. He shares a North London house with Pete, an uptight professional, and a total slob called Ed. Ed is his best mate from school and Shaun feels very protective of him. Shaun works as a sort of team leader in a branch of an Electrical shop where he suffers the daily tedium we have all felt when you work in a job you don't really like. His girlfriend, Liz, is dragged along by him every night the The Winchester, his local pub. As Shaun always brings Ed along, "Ed doesn't have many friends", so Liz brings along her flat mates, David and Dianne. After being dumped by Liz (For forgetting to book a restaurant and for trying to give her flowers destined for his mum), Shaun and Ed proceed to get massively drunk in the Winchester and head home to play loud music (annoying Pete in the process). However, the next morning and with huge hangovers, Shaun and Ed begin, very slowly, to realise that this is not a normal Sunday. It doesn't matter if you dislike horror films, romantic comedies or if you aren't a fan of British humour. This film will raise a chuckle at least, and have you roaring with laughter at best. George A Romero is a fan, as is Quentin Tarrantino. High praise indeed. My favourite moment? Well there are so many to choose from so I have to narrow it down to three. 1) Shaun's Sunday visit to the local shop where he fails to notice Zombie Nelson at the back of the shop, the bloody hand print on the drinks chiller and what it was on the floor which he slipped in. 2)In the lounge after their battle with the two Zombies in the back garden, where they are deciding on the best course of action; Ed: "So what are we gonna do now?" Shaun:"Have a sit down?" 3) When they are in the garden next to the Winchester, Shaun checks that the coast is clear by climbing up the steps of a child's slide. Superb comic timing! Shaun:"I'm just going to check that the coast is clear" (Climbs up few steps leaving us just with a shot of his legs and shoes on the rungs, pause for a few seconds, climbs back down into shot) Liz: "Well, is it clear?" Shaun:"No." David:"So how many are there?" Shaun: (Sounding like he's going to cry)"Lots."

Great film, I urge you to watch it!!!!

13 out of 32 people found the following review useful:
Stong start, hope it keeps up the pace, 24 October 2006

Started watching this on BBC3 on Sunday, there were two back-to-back episodes and it was like seeing Dr Who directed by Tarrantino. Captain Jack has gone very rude. The use of the F word, masturbating nightclub bouncers, Aliens who gain strength from the emotions of orgasm, nasty little creatures who bite your head off, and, largely owing to Russell T Davies, a Welsh setting with plenty of same sex kissing. I'm just waiting for a Dalek to show up and try to sh*g a dustbin! All in all an interesting start! Torchwood seems like a fun place to work. B.T.W, the team assembled to investigate the mysterious events all broke the rules on the same night. Had they just started working there? Liked the pheromone spray, although not sure about using it to pacify jealous boyfriends.

2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Classic Comedy, 23 October 2006

I have enjoyed watching these episodes may times. Well written and brilliantly acted was the blurb on the DVD boxes, and the reviewers are right. The cast are second to none, you believe they are tradesmen working for a living. The supporting characters also have great strength, in particular, Herr Grunwald, Ally Fraser, Brenda, Dagmar, Norma, Joe, etc, etc, etc.

To pick a favourite episode is difficult, especially as even the "weaker" ones are far superior to anything you will see on TV today. But if I had to, I would say my favourite is Suspicion. The sheer delight of Oz going on one over his stolen watch, Neville falling in lust, Wayne not pulling, Moxey fronting up to Oz, Barry absolutely drunk, Dennis poking fun out of Oz because Oz thinks the lads are threadbare and Bomber, well just for being Bomber. Favourite quote from the episode "The sum total of all our possessions wouldn't raise a f*rt at a bring-and-buy sale!"

The first series was set in Dusseldorf, and followed their lives over (supposedly) 6 months. There was a common story theme but each individual episode was stand alone. Series two changed, as it followed their fortunes working for a Newcastle based villain, doing up his Manor in Derbyshire and then building him a swimming pool in Malaga. The third series finds the lads demolishing a famous bridge in Middlesborough, and rebuilding it in Arizona, and finally, the fourth sees them working for the Foreign Office in Cuba.

I had mixed feelings about the revival of the format for series 3 & 4, as sometimes it is better to be wanting more, than actually to have it. But I was pleasantly surprised with the end results, although, not sure how Barry could've changed so much from Methodist prude, to drug taking womaniser.

Still the best thing to have graced the TV screen. Cold & Rainy winter evenings are not so bad, when you surf SKY and see AWP on one of the channels.

4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Brilliant, 4 August 2006

Any Blackadder fans would (usually) place Blackadder 2 head and shoulders above any of the other series, and, yes, so do I. But this must come as a close second. Perhaps for the fact that it is recent history, and the events of that terrible war are still discussed and written about today. This makes it bold era to discover the next generation of Blackadder's family.

Captain Blackadder, a career soldier of many years, erstwhile of the 19/45th East African Rifles, (where he saved Field Marshal Haig in 1892 at the battle of M'Boto Gorge from having something very nasty done to him with a sharpened Mango) is not happy at all. War to him meant something altogether different. Pink Gins, native girls and shooting people who were under no circumstances allowed to be armed! Suddenly, many millions of heavily armed Germans upset the balance, and we catch up with him at the Somme in 1917. He is usually in a front line trench, usually accompanied by a couple of dimwits (Leuitenant George and Private Baldrick) and usually being asked to have his brains blown out for King and Country.

The series comprised of six wonderfully written episodes concerning many aspects of life on the Western Front. Covert operations to discover enemy firepower, discipline and the firing squad, keeping up morale with a concert party, the involvement of the Royal Flying Corps, being a spy catcher, and finally, going over the top.

Stephen Fry excelled as the mad General Melchett, sending his boys over the top, convinced they would duck and weave and pull through to victory in the same way as he did when he played rugby at his public school. Utterly insane, no grip on reality and oblivious to the terrors of this awful war. He was based on the early Generals of 1916 who were utterly inflexible when an attack came, and would not think on their feet.

Melchett's batman was Captain Darling, a pen-pusher who loves the fact that he will never see the front line, so is comfortable where he is, sucking up to the General. Throughout the series, you laugh at his weaselly attempts to get Blackadder into trouble, but yes, at the end, you do feel for him. George is an upper class volunteer from 1914. He is eternally optimistic and nothing seems to get him down, not even when we find out all his fellows from Cambridge University have been killed. Baldrick is a smelly low-life from the East End of London. Stupid, but yet, lovable. He has no idea why he is there, except it is better than where he came from in Turnip Street.

The last episode is one to really concentrate on. Close the lounge door, turn the volume up on the TV, take the phone off the hook, etc, etc, etc. Barricade the door if necessary. The last 5 Minutes will live with you, I promise, for a very long time. I leave the final words to Captain Blackadder: "Good Luck everyone."

Total anarchy in the early 1980's (You utter, utter, utter Spoiler), 1 October 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

These twelve episodes hit the UK screens in the early 1980's and have shaped our comedy scene for the better. It consists of four students living in a North London house, who all attend Scumbag College and whom rarely see eye-to-eye.

Rik is the wannabe anarchist of the house. Fiercely socialist, a radical self-styled "People's Poet" and secret transvestite. Vyvyan Basterd is the medical student who enjoys inflicting physical pain upon others and is a mad psychopathic punk rocker. A softer side of him is revealed by his affection for his equally lunatic pet hamster, SPG, and his love for his plant, a Begonia (which we find out he waters every day as "he can't be bothered to walk upstairs to use the toilet." Neil Pye is the house hippy. Passive, moaning, and a Vegan. Neil loves Genesis, Hawkwind & Marillion and owns a loudspeaker which Jimi Hendrix "once p*ssed on". The final housemate is Mike Thecoolperson. A sophisticated lounge lizard who boasts of his many female conquests, although an episode featuring a vampire reveals that he is in fact a virgin. The landlord is one Mr Balowzci, who's family feature in each episode.

The episodes are unconnected and are complete stories with many, many sub-plots to follow. Episode 1 - Demolition - Fascist oiks at the town hall want to demolish the house. But Vyvian decides to do it for them. Episode 2 - Oil - they arrive at a new house, greeted by the naked talking statue by the front door which culminates in a workers revolution against Mike's insistence that Neil & Rik dig for oil in the cellar and a fully fledged benefit concert in the lounge. Episode 3 - Boring - Life has become very Booooring for the students. But if they paid more attention to what was occurring around them, they would have witnessed a terrorist siege in their lounge, a visitation from hell, a fairy tale world that flourishes while they are asleep. Neil is so bored he digs himself a grave and Vyvian chops his finger off in a joke-gone-wrong. Epside 4 - Bomb - The guys wake up in the morning to find that a nuclear bomb has landed in their kitchen. Things can't get any worse for them as it is blocking the refrigerator causing Vyv to put Ketchup on his cornflakes. Worse still, the TV licence man calls around! Episode 5 - Interesting - It's party time! But what other party can you mingle with the four horsemen of the apocalypse, a gigantic sandwich and a singing tomato. Featuring Jim Morrison as Rik's sociology lecturer, Father Christmas & Oliver Twist stuck up the chimney and Neil's hippy mate cryogenically chilled in the fridge. Episode 6 - Flood - While London floods, Rik keeps everybody amused with a game of hide-and-seek.Meanwhile his Sociology file is set on fire by Vyv, Mike's room is occupied by a pride of lions and the Landlord turns out to be an axe-wielding, homicidal maniac.

Series 2 Episode 1 - Bambi - Who produced the world's stickiest bogey and who's the world's stupidest bottom-burp? Who's smashing the oiks on University Challenge, and who's swotting away for teacher, like a total ... Yes, the guy's represent Scumbag college on TV's University challenge against Footlight's college, Oxbridge. Motorhead kill five minutes by playing "Ace of Spades" in the lounge. Episode 2 - Cash - Hey man! It's really weird! Strange thing keep disappearing and the table is shrinking. The guy's think there is a "poltergoost" in the house, unaware they really are haunted. Episode 3 - Nasty - Ashes to ashes, Funk to funky, Mike borrows a video recorder from "Harry the B*stard" and him and Vyv plan to spend the night whole night watching banned video nasties. Unfortunately, a vampire is delivered by the postman, disrupting the night's entertainment... Episode 4 - Time - Vyv is violently and copiously sick after hearing the gory details of Rik's alleged night of passion with a strange girl. Even better than that, she turns out to be a psychopathic maniac on the run, and then the whole house goes through a time warp into the medieval ages. Episode 5 - Sick - Their's bogeys on the blanket and snot on the sheets as the guys come down with the worst colds in history. Neil's parents visit at the same time as an escaped criminal "Brian Damaged-Balowski" holds them all hostage. Episode 6 - Summer Holiday - Exam results are posted, and the guy's have come bottom in the whole world. Evicted from their house for destroying the fridge with a hand grenade, squashing an elephant-headed man (who was singing "Stop! In the name of love") under the rug and not paying any rent, they live on the street overnight until they decide to rob the Fascist Pig-Bank and flee on a red, double decker bus, to their demise!

2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Very funny, and very clever, 2 September 2005

This was a short lived series of 10 or 20 minute episodes put out on BBC2 in the late 80's / early 90's. The premise was simple. Devise a ludicrous story about normal events, then search Pathe, BBC, NBC, etc archives to find suitable B&W footage to support the stories. After assembling this, find some talented voice over artists (Jim Broadbent, Ronnie Anacona, etc) and voilà, you have a winning formula for a cult TV show.

Me and my flat-mates used to literally cry with laughter at the absurd story lines and the stupid images accompanying it.

Favourite episodes:

The Queen Mother loses her favourite Corgi "Shafty-boy". Barry "Bazza" Bagshaw, the nations favourite sportsman. A Welsh child stops believing in Jesus so the Pope cancels Christmas


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