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Author Topic: Around the World in 80 DVD's  (Read 36670 times)
Rich
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« Reply #90 on: February 23, 2008, 02:46:52 AM »

Going native in Bhutan...



In a series of enlightening, dramatic and moving films, former Royal Marine officer Bruce Parry immerses himself in the way of life of some of the most remote tribes in the world. Parry sets out, not just to observe, but to experience and learn about the lives of these remarkable people. He hunts, cooks, eats and sleps with his hosts - and even tries their ritualistic drugs.
Shedding the trappings of western life, Parry reveals not only the practices and traditions of those indigenous peoples but also their warmth, humour and incredible resilience. Along the way he shares roasted rat cake with the Himalayan Adi; joins the Dassanech, a tribe from the Omo Valley in Southern Ethiopia, on a night-time crocodile hunt; leaps naked across the backs of a line of cattle in a Hamar coming-of-age ritual, and, with the Sanema of the Amazon, attempts to become a shaman, by taking a massive dose of p[sychoactive tree sap.


I can't praise this series enough. Saw an episode on tv and was immediately hooked. This 'normal' guy goes native with various tribes around the world, living as one of them, experiencing the most amazing customs. Parry (unlike Bear Grylls) manages to remain humble and genuinely earnest, and he is typically adopted into the families, and normally his departure from the tribe a month later is a gut wrenching tearful farewell.
If you are looking for something more than a film, and enjoy real life adventures and discovery, I GUARANTEE you will love this. 9/10  Thumb up ! Thumb up !
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Rich
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« Reply #91 on: February 23, 2008, 02:55:32 AM »

Marching across Burma...



One of the last untold true stories of World War II in the Far East, a story of soldiers who learnt about courage, and used their courage for survival. The story begins at the end of the war when a group of starving British and Australian POWs have all but given up hope of escaping from the dreaded railway line that had already cost so many lives. As the wheels of war grind to a halt, the Japanese decide to send their more able-bodied POWs over to Japan in a final attempt for victory. Crammed into cattle trucks, they begin their journey through the Thai jungle, destined to be imprisoned in the hull of a transport ship sailing through submarine infested waters

The description best suited I could find for this film was 'a jolly jape'. A real middle of the road movie that neither offends, bores or excites. The fictional Bridge on the River Kwai stands head and shoulders above this, classic wooden acting in abundance and a concentration on facts rather than feature makes this an average 5/10
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Rich
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« Reply #92 on: February 26, 2008, 09:13:45 PM »

boxing through Thailand...



Based on the true story of Thailand's famed transvestite kickboxer, Beautiful Boxer is a poignant action drama that punches straight into the heart and mind of a boy who fights like a man so he can become a woman.

A fairy tale - literally, based on truth. Over-sentimental and gentle, it is neither action, drama or impacting. This film bored me senseless, and only warrants a 3/10 due to the brilliant cinematography and convincing acting of the lead role.
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Rich
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« Reply #93 on: February 26, 2008, 09:25:26 PM »

Enlightenment through Malaysia...



Academy Award® winner Jodie Foster and international action star Chow Yun-Fat star in this epic true story of a woman who challenged the heart of a king and inspired the destiny of a nation.
English schoolteacher Anna Leonowens has traveled to Siam to educate the fifty-eight children of King Mongkut. If she has preconceived notions about the East, the King has similar notions about the West. But amid the danger of growing political unrest, their respect for each other slowly turns into something more.


A joy to watch, superb acting by Foster and Yun-Fat, great 'based on fact' storyline and splendid momentum contributed to make this an 8/10. The initial culture clash, political background, and developing respect and love between Anna and King Mongkut are brilliantly directed and a film that would happily be enjoyed by all ages.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2008, 09:27:42 PM by richierich » Logged

Rich
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« Reply #94 on: February 26, 2008, 09:32:21 PM »

Sea-sick to Singapore...



Rugged Captain Alan Gaskell (Clark Gable) sails the perilous waters between Hong Kong and Singapore with a secret cargo: a fortune in British gold. That's not the only risky cargo he carries. Both his fiery mistress (Jean Harlow) and his refined fiancee (Rosalind Russell) are aboard!

I have viewed better acting at a kindergartens nativity play - to say this film is pants is flattering it. It is bad in every way, the only way I can give it a 2.5/10 are for the ridiculous stormy sea scenes which really made me laugh, and Jean Harlows breasts  Tongue   Avoid this!
« Last Edit: February 26, 2008, 09:59:13 PM by richierich » Logged

Rich
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« Reply #95 on: February 26, 2008, 09:46:59 PM »

Quick jump into Brunei Darussalam...



In modern Qingdao, Yin (Michelle Yeoh) and her brother Tong are the last heirs in a long lineage of acrobats protecting a Sharira relic. Being circus performers, they travel throughout the world, entrancing audiences with their stunningly beautiful gymnastic performance. One day, Eric, a man from Yin's past, shows up with a Medallion - the Heart of Dunhuang - a key to unlock the secrets, a clue to unveil the legend of the Sharira. Together they embark on a hazardous journey to rediscover what her ancestors once protected. Following closely on their trail is Karl, a merciless, unscrupulous rich man who will stop at nothing to get his hands on the valuable treasures

Yeoh remains as gorgeous as ever, but I thought this feature written and produced by her was a step too far. Wannabe Hollywood, falling slightly short in all counts, this never became anything more than a glorified commercial exercise. For what is basically a Hong Kong movie, it was below my expectations. 4/10
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« Reply #96 on: February 26, 2008, 09:53:54 PM »

the only way I can give it a 2/10 are for the ridiculous stormy sea scenes which really made me laugh, and Jean Harlows breasts  Tongue   Avoid this!

Surely that's a "3" then? Devil
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Rich
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« Reply #97 on: February 26, 2008, 09:57:30 PM »

Disclosing the truth in Cambodia...



Title: The Killing Fields

Runtime:141
Certificate:R
Year:1984
Genres:Drama, War

Plot:When the Khmer Rouge captured Phnom Penh in 1975, many thought the killing would end. Instead it started a long nightmare in which three million Cambodians would die in the "killing fields."
'The Killing Fields' is an epic story of friendship and survival produced by David Puttnam ('Chariots of Fire') and directed by Roland Joffé ('The Mission'). Sam Waterston plays Sydney Schanberg, whose war coverage entraps him and other journalists. Dr. Haing S. Ngor is Dith Pran, Schanberg's aide and friend who saves them from execution. But Pran is sentenced to labor camps, enduring starvation and torture before escaping to Thailand. Ngor also endured Khmer Rouge atrocities and saw his moving, Academy Award® winning portrayal of Pran (one of the film's three Oscars®) as a way of bringing his nation's tragic ordeal to light.
My Review:
One of the few films in the marathon I've seen before, and this repeat watching did not disappoint and was thoroughly enjoyed by my son also on his first viewing. Often criticised for the severe level of violence, this is purely a factual representation of the disgusting Pol Pot regime which the Cambodian people still suffer repercussions from. Thought-provoking and often disturbing, the only downside I can level at the film is the appalling 80's soundtrack by Mike Oldfield which is totally out of balance with the films content
My Rating
 Thumb up !
« Last Edit: January 17, 2010, 01:18:45 AM by Rich » Logged

Rich
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« Reply #98 on: February 26, 2008, 10:02:45 PM »

the only way I can give it a 2/10 are for the ridiculous stormy sea scenes which really made me laugh, and Jean Harlows breasts  Tongue   Avoid this!

Surely that's a "3" then? Devil

Amended to 2 1/2 - I could only see one of Jeans extremely stiff nipples in her wet shirt   Drooling !
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Rich
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« Reply #99 on: March 02, 2008, 09:46:12 PM »

that's livin alright in Laos...



Following a narrow escape from a British Embassy in Africa besieged by rioters, the lads relocate to the Australian Embassy in Laos for their next job. Whilst at work, after all their adventures, one by one the boys start realising there’s more to life than being part of their gang - a feeling brought into sharp focus after a letter arrives from Bomber telling them he’s swapping his trowel for a settled family life. On successfully completing the job, and sensing this could be the last time they’re all together, the boys make big plans for some rest and relaxation in Thailand. But it’s not long before events and a familiar enemy conspire against them, and rest and relaxation are a distant memory...

Being a big fan of Auf Wied this was always going to appeal. Nothing ground breaking or different from the series, this special was a final hurrah for the travelling brickies from the UK, and their ages dictated that as they were pushing it for this feature. A solid 6/10, but only for existing fans.
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Rich
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« Reply #100 on: March 02, 2008, 09:52:27 PM »

limping through 'nam...



Based on a true story, this action film set in the post-Vietnam era casts Gene Hackman as a retired military man who gets tired of government inaction in tracking down the whereabouts of his son, who has been listed as missing in action in Vietnam. So he gathers and trains a rough group of Vietnam vets to launch his own mission into Laos, where his intelligence tells him the son is being held. Hackman brings sorrowful power to the role of determined father, and has a rugged supporting cast (including Patrick Swayze, Fred Ward, and Randall "Tex" Cobb) to keep the story moving forward, even when the machinations become formulaic

Despite the fact it is loosely based on a true account, it comes across as a poor mans rambo. Dull, slow, wooden and predictable. Not recommended. 4/10
« Last Edit: March 02, 2008, 10:02:33 PM by richierich » Logged

Rich
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« Reply #101 on: March 02, 2008, 10:01:15 PM »

Ducking bullets in Hong Kong...



Hard-Boiled is the last film directed by Hong Kong action auteur John Woo before his arrival in the U.S. This 1992 thriller, along with The Killer, is widely seen as one of his best from his Hong Kong days. Every ingredient of the quintessential Woo thriller is present, including his ever-present anti-hero (Chow Yun-Fat). Yun-Fat portrays a maverick, clarinet-playing cop nicknamed "Tequila" whose partner is killed in the dizzying chaos of a restaurant gunfight with a small army of gangsters. It is soon revealed that one of the mob's high-ranking assassins is Tony (Tony Leung), an undercover cop who, despite his badge, is dangerously close to the edge

Is there any other film that lets loose so many bullets?!? Classic Woo HK flick, Yun-Fat in familiar laid-back hero role, Tony Leung again stars and excels in his role. It's not my preferred genre, so I mark it lower than a real fan, but I do appreciate the all action film making style and pulsating pace of this movie. 5/10
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Rich
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« Reply #102 on: March 06, 2008, 11:44:58 AM »

awestruck in Taiwan...



Two master warriors (Chow Yun Fat and Michelle Yeoh) are faced with their greatest challenge when the treasured Green Destiny sword is stolen. A young aristocrat (Zhang Ziyi) prepares for an arranged marriage, but soon reveals her superior fighting talents and her deeply romantic past. As each warrior battles for justice, they come face to face with their worst enemy - and the inescapable, enduring power of love.

This is beginning to feel like a Chow Yun Fat marathon (or is than Fat Chow Yun or Yun Fat Chow  Roll Eyes )
Watching this again but for the first time on a highly detailed 42" screen made it feel like a new viewing experience, what a masterpiece it is in film-making and handling of this genre. Stunning imagery and effects, brilliant acting from all parties, attention to detail is superb, an all round great and highly recommended film. 8/10
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Rich
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« Reply #103 on: March 07, 2008, 10:29:50 AM »

Hiding behind a cushion in Korea...



A man is inexplicably kidnapped and imprisoned for 15 years and his wife is brutally murdered. On his release, he is given a wallet full of money and a mobile phone. A stranger calls and asks him to try and figure out why he was imprisoned. A girl appears and promises to help him solve the enigma and seek vengeance for his cruel fate. As the search progresses, the man finally comes face to face with his kidnapper, who proposes a game: if the man discovers the reason for his imprisonment, his kidnapper will kill himself. If not, then the girl will be killed. He has only five days to unravel the mystery.

My prevailing image that remains from the film is the torture by means of removing the guys teeth with a claw hammer  Shocked  man that was awful!
Stylish and entertaining, at times funny, a brilliant score, moving and haunting all at the same time. Again this is never going to be a high score because it isn't my favourite type of film, but I could fully appreciate the praise it has been given and would easily watch it again. Recommended 7/10
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Rich
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« Reply #104 on: March 07, 2008, 10:41:06 AM »

Expectations in Japan...



Title: Seven Samurai

Runtime:206
Certificate:NR
Year:1954
Genres:Action, Drama

Plot:A desperate village hires seven samurai to protect it from marauders in this crown jewel of Japanese cinema. No other film so seamlessly weaves philosophy and entertainment, delicate human emotions and relentless action. Featuring Japan's legendary star, the great Toshiro Mifune, Akira Kurosawa's Seven Samurai is an inspired epic, a triumph of art, and an unforgettable three-hour ride.

My Review:
Ok, this was my second viewing of the film, I was all set-up for the marathon knowing the immense length of the production, and with expectations I would enjoy this more than when I watched it some years ago at a friends.
Nope - I still only see this as an average film.  Tomato I don't get all the hype?  Bag Just appears now like film buff BS.
Unrealistic acting, false wigs so clear to see on a bigger screen, did I miss a really good swordplay fight scene whilst comatose, all they seemed to do is shout at each other the whole film??
Unless you have a beard, wear cordrouys and jackets with patches on the elbows, and wish to pretend you are cultured, I would miss this one.
My Rating
 Undecided

« Last Edit: January 17, 2010, 01:29:16 AM by Rich » Logged

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