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I absolutely hated this. Whilst appreciating the scenery and the acting it was just so depressing that at the end I really wished I hadn't watched it - it's enough to make one suicidal. I kept watching hoping that things would get less pessimistic and bleak and that is just what never happened. Personally I don't watch television for reality (which I can get in plenty in real life) or to make me depressed. I might watch television for education (which is not what this offered other than some interesting views of Iceland which I enjoyed) or for enjoyment (which this certainly did not offer me). :( Watch it at your peril.
Six: The Mark Unleashed (2004)
The most boring film I've ever seen
This is without doubt the most boring film I have ever seen. It is nothing but an attempt at religious indoctrination which fails miserably as far as I am concerned and, I suspect, judging by the number of 1 votes that this film has received, that I am far from being alone in this respect. It is all just sickeningly goody goody and makes Plan 9 from Outer Space look interesting, exciting, realistic and relevant. There is no way in which this film is going to appeal to anybody other than the commercially and publicly religious. Any real Christian is going to be horrified at the public washing of their ideals in public - all the film does is to emulate the brainwashing that it purports to abhor. If this holier than thou attitude is how Christians see themselves (and believe me, most of those I know do not, I am pleased to say) then it would be the most hypocritical of religions - and most religious fanatics are hypocritical in the extreme. This is a tremendously bad advertisement for Christianity, will make no converts and will even lose it a lot of friends.
Tiger Bay (1959)
One of the best films of all time.
This film is absolutely magnificent. The period is captured perfectly in authentic black-and-white. The on-location shooting is now, itself, a historical document in its own right. The characters are totally believable and portrayed to perfection by the faultless and charismatic actors: Horst Buchholz, Hayley Mills and her father John Mills. Each of these produces a performance as good as any that they had produced or were ever to produce. Not one of these three could be said to be the principal actor or to outshine the others. Despite the fact that this was the first time Hayley was to appear in a film, it was certainly no amateur, novice or childish performance; the degree of maturity is unbelievable and itself a thing at which to marvel. Horst Buchholz manages to show to perfection a character of greatly mercurial temperament, ranging from great anger to great tenderness in seconds - a truly outstanding piece of acting and his is a character with which the viewer finds himself/herself sympathising completely. Altogether, this is a film to treasure and to see time and time again.
It is delightful to see my childhood heroes and heroine (Prof. Peabody, of course) reincarnated onto the silver screen. Pretty well everything is as it should be with the horrendous exception of Digby's voice. Seeing as the man is from Wigan and pure Lancashire through and through, it is a nightmare to hear him speaking with a Cockney accent. To say that Americans would not understand a Lancashire accent is insulting to both Lancastrians and Americans. Apart from this, the series is very enjoyable and will certainly make many friends from those who remember the original in the Eagle; those who are not able to reminisce may also be able to enjoy the series perfectly well and I hope that many people manage to do just this. It is a wonderful piece of nostalgia for some and great historical sci-fi for others.
Much better than the earlier film.
How wonderful it is to have a really good, honest and faithful version of Dune. The original film just seemed to revel in Gothic sets and a desire to out-gross itself with its over-the-top performances. What a pleasure it is, therefore, to have a version of the film that is so much more like one envisages it on reading the book! The scenery is spectacular and the special effects appear natural and genuine - always a rarity these days where the SFX Department seem to delight in their art for its own sake and not for the sake of the film. The character of Paul is expertly played as are all those of the principals - in fact, I would go so far as to say that there isn't a weak link in the entire mini-series. Congratulations to all concerned. A definite 10 out of 10.
Ocean's Twelve (2004)
This was a tremendous disappointment. After the wonderful Ocean's 11 I was really looking forward to this, the sequel; instead the first hour at least was totally disjointed and largely incomprehensible. It was impossible to 'get into' the film and empathise with the characters. We seemed to be with no character long enough to either like or dislike them, and certainly not long enough to understand them. The plot, if there was one, was flimsy and I really got to the couldn't care less stage pretty early on. The second hour was somewhat better but it was still very disjointed with an awful lot remaining unclear. Whereas Ocean's 11 got everyone involved in the plot, in this one it was simply a matter of wondering what was happening and not really caring about the answer in any case. A big disappointment. I am not looking forward to Ocean's 13, 14 and 15.
An all-time classic.
This is truly an all-time classic. It is a genuine gem from beginning to end. Its date of 1961 should not be allowed to put you off as you will find here a gripping film with truly serious overtones and a very worrying conclusion. The acting is excellent and the story-line convincingly brought out. The tension builds up throughout the duration of the film and the end of the film really makes one think. The special effects are more-than-adequate - indeed, no more is needed. Shot in dramatic black and white this film deserves a place on everyone's DVD shelf. If you haven't yet seen it, then don't hesitate a moment longer as you are missing one of the best sci-fi films of all time.
The Skulls II (2002)
An excellent sequel to a good film.
I enjoyed The Skulls a good deal on account of some charismatic acting by a number of individuals led by Paul Walker. It was not, however, as enjoyable a film as I had been led to believe but curiosity resulted in my watching The Skulls II. Was I disappointed? Certainly not! This film is much better than the original. The actors are certainly no less charismatic. The plot is infinitely better and the interplay between the characters leaves the first film looking worse than it had seemed at the time. I expect that most people will dismiss this film without watching it, as a sequel to an unspectacular film does not exactly draw the crowds. It would, however, be their loss if this were so. I am certainly pleased that I have seen it.
The War Zone (1999)
Absolutely disgusting film - Avoid at all costs.
This is without doubt the worst film I have ever seen. It fails in every respect. It is slow and reminds me of nothing more than the classic '60s 'arty' French film where everyone spends ages in silence trying to give meaningful glances, pouting and looking 'emotional'. I nearly turned the film off after the first half hour - nothing seemed to have happened. In truth, I wish I had turned the film off. The topic of anal intercourse between father and daughter is not one on which a film 'for entertainment' should be made. It is absolutely disgusting and not for viewing by normal people, only those with a sick mentality. I can watch horror films, psychological thrillers and the like with no problem, but this I found horrendous. It deserves a rating so that it can only be watched by people over the age of 200 when accompanied by both parents. It is the kind of film that might make a suitable discussion topic for a psychiatrists' convention, but I can see no other point in the film. Avoid it all costs. Minus 10/10.
Dark Heritage (1989)
Avoid this film at all costs.
This is probably the worst film I have ever seen; it makes Plan 9 from Outer Space look wonderful. The acting is wooden, the plot silly and the SFX non-existent. The only good thing about it is the fact that it is not a long film. The scenery is sometimes quite pretty, assuming you like trees, if that helps any!
Wow! Absolutely brilliant!
This film is an absolutely brilliant idea executed to perfection. The actors are superbly convincing from beginning to end. I first saw it under the belief that it was supposed to be an actual incident - and this is how the film was intended to be seen. It was years later that I realised it was a film not an actual record of events. Perhaps it is because of this that I found the film so convincing, but it is well worth watching even though you have seen that it is not a record of an actual alien abduction. However, the impact of the film will be lost on you. This does not diminish the skill of the film at all and I congratulate all concerned on conceiving the film and in carrying it off so convincingly.
Joy Ride (2001)
Absolutely phenomenal film.
This is a most fabulous film: it is a real nail-biting, edge-of-seat film from beginning to end. Right from the start you know things are going to get really nasty - it's only a question of what, when and to what extent. The actors are charismatic and perform very well indeed - their personalities are clearly established early on and are maintained consistently throughout. There is nothing I could say adverse about the film - it even comes on Region 1 DVD with 4 alternative endings. What more could one wish?
Children of Dune (2003)
Outstandingly worthy sequel to Dune.
Brilliant acting, superb sets and effects. The first part relates the story of the book Dune Messiah and does it very well indeed; both the book and the episode are excellent. The continuation book, Children of Dune, I found extremely difficult to understand and I did not really get very much out of it, Happily, the 2 miniseries episodes relating the story of the book are much easier to understand and, though still complex, are not beyond one's ability to comprehend and enjoy. Altogether this is a more than worthy sequel to Frank Herbert's 'Dune' and is one to watch and revel in time and time again. Get out there and enjoy it!
A wonderful rendering of Bizet's masterpiece
It would appear I have seen a totally different film from the previous reviewer who thought this awful. Compared with the performances in most opera houses, this version of Bizet's masterpiece was a true revelation allowing one to get the genuine feel of Spain and to see the drama unfolding in realistic locations. Everyone performed very well indeed, the singing was magnificent, the scenery unbelievable and the atmosphere perfection. The only complaint is the inclusion of the appalling bullfight (slaughter) scene during the overture which was quite unnecessary and much to be deplored. Any other viewer who shares my sensitivities will do the same as I do and miss out the Overture (which is a pity) and go straight to chapter 2 of the DVD. A very silly and pointless move which does not give atmosphere, only repulsion. A shame to have spoilt the ship for a ha'p'orth of tar, as they say here in the UK.
Strategic Command (1997)
I enjoyed it very much
Well! I'm sorry to disagree entirely with everyone else here since I enjoyed this film tremendously. So, it's not original - what of it! That doesn't stop me enjoying 90 minutes of pure escapism. Michael Dudikoff is always well worth watching and many of his movies are great fun, indeed. This one is one of his best and I am delighted to have now bought it on VHS so that I can watch it many times, which I plan on doing.
I do feel sorry for everyone else who has seen and not enjoyed this film - perhaps they simply cannot let themselves go and enjoy the film for what it is, not what they think it ought to have been. Maybe I am too simplistic for their tastes - in that case I'm glad I am. There must be somebody else out there somewhere who, like me, has enjoyed this film!
Space: Above and Beyond (1995)
One of the truly greats
This is without doubt one of the truly great sci-fi series of all time. Why it was ever cancelled is, equally, one of the great mysteries of all time. The characters were all highly charismatic and all very different; yet they blended together perfectly to make one hell of a team. Nowhere was there a weak link: the weakest was the tendency to photograph the entire series in near blackness - a fault shared by so many TV and cinema films these days e.g. The X-Files. This is not a series with a single 'star' with everyone else playing satellite roles: in S:AAB, there are either no stars or everyone is a star. You cannot choose individuals as the entire series emphasises time and again that the group of youngsters and their commanding officers are all part of the team, and that they are all functioning as one unit. To anyone who is not impressed by S:AAB, then I really would like to know what they fancy, as I probably would not.
Second only to Babylon 5
There has only ever been one sci-fi series/miniseries better than V and that was, of course, Babylon 5. V retains a particular place in one's affections as it was quite revolutionary in its day and has lost very little of its impact since. It still has the ability to horrify and inspire in turn and this is no mean feat for something that is now twenty years old. It is far superior in its science to anything that had come before. Certainly one can find scientific and other flaws in the programme; for what series/film can one not do this? However, the important point is not the scientific accuracy but the credibility within the context of the programme, and this is never in question. Watching V one believes it all. Certainly one could criticise the fact that certain photographic shots occur several times throughout the entire series, but that is neither here nor there. As for Diana and her verbal sparring with Pamela and Lydia in turn - this is the major delight of the series. Jane Badler playing Diana is absolutely stunning - beautiful and evil in equal quantities: what a combination. There has never been a portrayal of a character that was more perfect, more charismatic, more love-hate than this, no matter what the film/TV series anywhere, anytime. Watch and enjoy.
Gale Force (2002)
I must admit to being disappointed with this film. Normally I very much enjoy films starring Michael Dudikoff but this was not up to the usual standard, perhaps because he did not play as important a role as he might. Scientifically the film was complete rot, particularly regarding the nature of tsunamis, and this stretched the imagination beyond acceptable limits and required too many allowances to enable one to participate in the film. Instead I found myself listing the errors within it. It's a pity, since although not by any means an original idea for a movie, there is still sufficient mileage in it for there to have been a good, exciting and enjoyable film. Alas, this is not it!
One of the best films of its type
This is without doubt one of the best films of its type. The actors are not all household names, by any means, but this is no disadvantage at all. The characters are all charismatic and well-acted. You get a real sense of adventure and, especially importantly, of participation whilst watching this movie and the time passes all-too-quickly. There are a number of actors here who deserve much more high profile airings and I look forward to following their careers with interest.
Atomic Train (1999)
An outstanding film.
There is certainly no lack of excitement in this film right from the very start to the very end. The photography is incredible. All the characters are highly memorable and charismatic - you don't necessarily like them all, but they are all well acted.. I was glued to the TV the first time I saw it and having now bought the DVD remain just as glued to the set on every showing. Watch it and buy it.
Midnight Ride (1990)
An outstandingly good thriller.
This must be one of the best movies around for entertainment. It is concise (only about one and a half hours), full of well-acted, charismatic people. The story line is tense and full of imagination. The plot has plenty of twists and turns, mostly surprising ones. I do not want to say too much for fear of taking away some of the surprise. Altogether this is a must-see movie.
First Wave (1998)
An outstanding Sci Fi series not to be missed.
Contrary to the views of another reviewer, I find this series outstandingly entertaining and my wife and I have been addicted to every episode. I am in my 50's and have a postgraduate degree - so much for moronic, sex-craved teens only! It is excellent escapism. No-one is suggesting that the programme is 'realistic' - that could hardly be described as the purpose of most SciFi TV series - but it does hold one intrigued from the beginning of the first series to the end of the last to find out how, if at all, everything is going to work out. The 'prophecies' of Nostradamus add a novel twist to everything and since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery I should imagine that Nostradamus would feel well flattered indeed by this programme and the only somersaults he will be turning in his grave will be one's of delight. I would suggest that this programme be accepted for what it is and that one should not expect it to be deeply meaningful or anything else that it does not purport to be. It is well acted and directed throughout and I would recommend it unreservedly.
A Knight's Tale (2001)
A truly great film
A wonderfully detailed report about this film has already been given elsewhere and there is nothing really to add to that, but I have enjoyed the film so much that it would be remiss of me not to add a few words.
It is a modern fairy tale set in Mediaeval times with the inspired addition of Geoffrey Chaucer to add eloquent humour and to help set the date more accurately. The film is typical of a fairy tale in that you know exactly what is going to happen and to whom; you want it to happen; it does happen, and far from being disappointed you are absolutely delighted and even relieved.
The actors from beginning to end are 100% charismatic and the viewer gets swept along like on a roller coaster ride in the tunnel of love with thrills and spills and oohs and aahs and genuine romance and even, (dare one say it these days), love - complete with love-letters and poetry. The music is amazing - as far from Mediaeval music as it is possible to be, and yet perfect nonetheless, and some of the modernisms, such as the Mexican wave in the crowd at the joust are superbly entertaining.
Not a film for the cynical or those afraid of looking at the world with childlike innocence, but it is their loss; for the rest of us it is a film to be seen and enjoyed time after time after time.
This is a film where it would be too easy to give away too much information about the plot - suffice it to say that it is a First Contact with Aliens situation. Sounds hackneyed? Not at all! This film had 4 adults totally engrossed for significantly over 2 hours and at the end we were all wanting to talk about the film. The acting is superb, the plot with its twists and turns (not contrived ones) enthralling and the whole story magnificent. Watch it or miss out on one of life's great cinematographic experiences!
The Third Man (1949)
Probably the best film ever.
It has the most wonderful photography, the most haunting music, tremendous atmosphere, riveting personalities, historical interest - just simply, everything. No more need be said except that if you haven't yet seen it, then fall in love with it as soon as possible; you are missing pure magic.