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141. Judgment at Nuremberg
$14.94 $8.56
142. Snatch
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143. The Fox and the Hound
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144. Ed Wood
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145. What Dreams May Come
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146. Saving Private Ryan
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147. Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's
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148. Thelma & Louise
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149. The Lion King - Special Edition
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150. Blade Runner
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151. The Godfather, Part III (Final
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152. Bridget Jones - The Edge of Reason
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153. Reds
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154. Butterflies Are Free
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155. Field of Dreams
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156. Hopscotch
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157. A Civil Action
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158. Circus World
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159. Forrest Gump
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160. 12 Angry Men (1997)

141. Judgment at Nuremberg
Director: Stanley Kramer
list price: $14.95
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Asin: 630396155X
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 5585
Average Customer Review: 4.83 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential video

Director Stanley Kramer's socially conscious 1961 film tackles the subject of the war crime trials arising out of World War II in an earnest and straightforward fashion, exploring the consciousness of two nations as they struggle to come to terms with the aftermath of the Holocaust. Spencer Tracy plays the American judge selected to head the tribunal that will try the suspected war criminals. As he sets about his task, he must confront the raw emotion felt by the German people, and his own notions of good and evil, right and wrong. Regarded as a classic, this stark rendering of one of the most pivotal events in the 20th century features a stellar cast including Burt Lancaster, Montgomery Clift, Marlene Dietrich, a young William Shatner, and Maximillian Schell, who won an Oscar for his role as counsel for the defense for those charged with crimes against humanity. Judgment at Nuremberg is important viewing not only for the history of film, but for the history of modern times. --Robert Lane ... Read more

Reviews (30)

5-0 out of 5 stars Star-Studded Recounting of Legendary Nazi Trials
This star-studded film vividly captures the characters on all 3 sides of the spectrum: The accused, the victims, and the international tribunal judging the perpetrators of unspeakable atrocities against fellow human beings. It is shocking to see how many of the people responsible for the gruesome deaths of millions justified their actions.

After hearing witnesses who often were tortured, mamed by sadistic doctors, and had their loved ones murdered, I can not grasp the fact that the majority of those on trial were released after serving minimal prison terms. Some of them are still among us, while millions of victims lie in their graves at the hands of an evil minority!

Stellar performances by an International cast. Most noteworthy are Montgomery Clift and Judy Garland as testifying victims, Maximilian Schell as Prosecutor (Oscar Winner), Marlene Dietrich as wife of a defendant, and an elderly Spencer Tracy, trying to make sense of it all.

Effective use of B&W photography, first rate sets and costumes, along with many other production values, make this a timeless Classic. Although considerd over-long by some, I recommend this film to be shown to high school classes as a reminder that these things happened in a not so distant past.*****

5-0 out of 5 stars SCHELL, TRACY, GARLAND, LANCASTER, CLIFT & WIDMARK GREAT!
This is a superb film by Stanley Kramer with an unbelievably great cast at the height of their craft. Each of the legendary actors were at the top of their performances in the reinactment of the Judge's Trial at Nuremberg. The world was tired of the Nuremberg trials. This one was a mopping up operation. Against a backdrop of an escalating Cold War with the Soviet Union, the selling out of justice by prominent Nazi judges serving the Third Reich is put on trial. Spencer Tracey plays Judge Dan Haywood, a retired Maine circuit court judge brought out of mothballs to serve as the chief justice. Amazingly, the usual action actor Burt Lancaster plays the top Nazi judge who at first does not recognize the Nuremberg tribunal's authority to judge him. For some mysterious reason, critics over the years failed to acknowledge the tremendous acting job he did in convincingly carrying off what was perhaps this film's most dynamic character change. However, my personal favorite was Maximillian Schell whose quintessential Germanic Hans Rolfe, the defense attorney released the full range of this incredible actor's virtuosity. For this he deservedly won an Academy Award Oscar.

One thousand words are not enough to celebrate this timeless film: Judy Garland (in perhaps her last film role) delivers a heartbreaking middle aging Irene Hoffman, reliving her experiences of Nazi cruelty on the witness stand; once again. However, not very good was the young Canadian actor, William Shatner playing Army Captain Byers, the aide de camp to Judge Haywood (Tracy). [The Starship Enterprise didn't seem to improve Shatner's skills any.] Richard Widmark (the moody, hostile prosecutor) and Montgomery Clift [who begged for the role he was willing to play without pay!] were excellent. Clift plays a slightly retarded German laborer, sterilized by Nazi doctors because of his mental slowness. This is among the very best films made by Kramer in the decade of the 1960s. Amazingly, it was released one year after INHERIT THE WIND, another Tracy-Kramer classic!

5-0 out of 5 stars MASTERPIECE
What happens when Stanley Kramer teams Tracy, Dietrich, Garland, Schell, Clift, Lancaster and Widmark in a drama based on the trials in pos-war Nuremberg??? It`s vintage Hollywood; still 1 IF not THE BEST about the horrors from World War II ..... The film should be in every school-library across the world

5-0 out of 5 stars MASTERPIECE
What happens when Stanley Kraner teams Tracy, Dietrich, Garland, Schell, Clift, Lancaster and Widmark in a drama based on the trials in pos-war Nuremberg??? It`s vintage Hollywood; still 1 IF not THE BEST about the horrors from World War II ..... The film should be in every school-library across the world

5-0 out of 5 stars Wooooooooow
Ok, you`ll get Garland, Dietrich, Clift, Tracy, Widmark & Schell - the production headed by Stanley Kramer.... the result is pure Hollywood vintage combined with horrors from the 2nd World War??? But indeed; it is a masterpiece.... It should be in every school-library all over the world:-) ... Read more


142. Snatch
Director: Guy Ritchie
list price: $14.94
our price: $14.94
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Asin: B00005JHAD
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 3281
Average Customer Review: 4.49 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (272)

5-0 out of 5 stars Another masterpiece from Guy Ritchie
Highly talented writer/director Guy Ritchie delivers another masterpiece with Snatch, that equals the sheer quality and genius of his other masterpiece, Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrells. Once again the film is edgy with vast undertones of dark, gritty realism centering on the underworld but refreshingly encapsulates a darkly humorous side to it making the film have an even balance and therefore making it more enjoyable and entertaining in the process. The film has a host of subplots all shrewdly linked to the main storyline and a wealth of characters including a couple of likeley Cockney lads who are two novice unlicensed boxing promotors, Turkish (Jason Statham) and Tommy (Stephen Graham), fellow boxing promotor Brick Top (Alan Ford), Mickey O'Neil played by Brad Pitt as an Irish gypsy who gets roped into the boxing match where his opposition is rigged to win, Avi (Dennis Farina) as the man due to deliver a stolen 86 carat diamond and Bullet Tooth Villain (Vinnie Jones) who Avi hires to trace the diamond after he is robbed. The characters and performances are superb and vastly convincing, the host of plots are well-structured and the attutude-laced dialogue rides along like a roller coaster. Snatch on the whole is an utterly compelling film that will grip your attention and not let it go until the film is completed. Essential viewing and the extra features on this DVD are an added bonus. Highly recommended!

4-0 out of 5 stars Chaotic, kinetic and outrageous fun
Snatch is a fast-paced gangster thriller from England. Like many such British films, it is equal parts drama and black comedy. Our friends in the UK may take crime seriously, but they can't bring themselves to do the same with criminals. Perhaps there is a lesson for us there. I thoroughly enjoyed Snatch, but I must warn you that the accents can sometimes be hard to understand. The one used by Brad Pitt is intentionally indecipherable. Fortunately, I watched the DVD version, which has an option that puts subtitles on the screen whenever Mt. Pitt speaks. The video edition does not have this feature, but that doesn't matter too much. His dazzling performance is entirely physical in nature, so what does it matter what he has to say? The other characters don't understand him either.

The movie was directed by Michael Ritchie, who is probably better known to Americans as Madonna's husband. His first picture, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, was also about psycho bad guys; in fact, Snatch is so similar to it that it is practically a sequel. The characters are different, but many of the same actors appear in both movies. Both films also share Ritchie's frenetic, stylish editing, as well as his fascination with lowlifes.

The plot is so complicated that describing it is difficult. I had little problem following it, but several reviewers admitted to getting completely lost. Basically, the story is about a huge diamond that gets stolen from a jewelry company in Amsterdam. It bounces from one group of criminals to the next, and, of course, everybody wants to get their hands on it at any cost. Meanwhile, a boxing promoter is having a very difficult time with a vile, ruthless gang boss who is demanding that he fix a fight. This is where Brad Pitt's character, One Punch Mickey, comes in. He is part of a band of gypsies [thus, the accent] who are the trickiest double-dealing folks you are every likely to see. Soon, everyone is merrily out to get everyone else.

The characters all have names straight out of a Damon Runyon story - Frankie Four Fingers, Bullet Tooth, Boris the Blade, Turkish and Brick Top are some of them. I think the names alone are enough of a clue that the movie is not to be taken seriously. One problem some viewers will have with it is that there are two or three times as many characters than in most movies. Keeping up with them can be a challenge.

Snatch should prove to be great fun for those who love for a movie to be fast and innovative. For those who like them to be cool, calm and collected, another choice of movies is recommended.

4-0 out of 5 stars Where's the snatch?
I thought from the title that this was a XXX porno flick. Silly me. Brad Pitt still spends the entire movie talking like he's got a tampon stuffed in each cheek (sort of like the cotton wads Marlon Brando used in The Godfather). Is this the way these people really talk? And I thought I had a speech impediment. I should start auditioning for parts in movies about Irish gypsies. Still, this was a pretty good flick and I'd actually give it 4.5 stars if I could. Big Bubba says go see it and don't Bogart the popcorn.

4-0 out of 5 stars I again can not think of a title
Here is the deal about "Snatch", if you happen to be a Brad Pitt fan, you will probably love this movie because the 1st time you watch it, he steals the show, and because he is (if I am not mistaken and I very well might be) the only American actor in the movie and the other actors are not very well known in the states, I mean some people know Jason Statham but who knows the other actors, very few people, or at least, before they see/saw "Snatch". Great movie, hilarious really, it gets old after you watch it a couple of times but if you watch it with your friends, it's all in good fun because you can go on reciting the lines you know and that makes it a lot more fun to watch but the 1st time, it's beautiful.

5-0 out of 5 stars to all you 3* & below plonkers
Seen some critics say they can't understand what the f*** is being said by the english actors .Some even suggest leaving the subtitles on !

Why should all films pander to a middle USA marketplace .Can't you enjoy the cultural differences & isn't it fun to try to pick up how other people speak the great english language ? We don't have UK english subtitles for US movies .

By the way I'm saying this as a Scotsman living in England . The Londoners find us equally difficult to understand but we don't have english subtitles for scottish actors everyone over here just works it out .

Bloody good film if you make the effort . ... Read more


143. The Fox and the Hound
Director: Richard Rich, Art Stevens, Ted Berman
list price: $22.99
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Asin: B00004R992
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 466
Average Customer Review: 4.26 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

The Fox and the Hound marked the last collaboration betweenDisney's older artists, including three of the "Nine Old Men" (FrankThomas, Ollie Johnston, and Woolie Reitherman), and the young animators whowould make the record-breaking films of the '90s. Based on a book by Daniel P. Mannix, the film tells the story of a bloodhound puppy and a fox kit who begin as friends but are forced to become enemies. Tod and Copper barely establish their friendship before Copper begins histraining as hunting dog. Unfortunately, neither character develops much of apersonality, which makesit difficult to care about them. The screen comes alive near end of the film, when Tod and Copper have to joinforces to fight off an enormous bear. It had been years since Disney produceda sequence with this kind of feral power--and years would pass before theysurpassed it. The Fox and the Hound ranks as one of the studio's lesser efforts, butit suggests that better films were soon to follow. (Ages 5 and older) --Charles Solomon ... Read more

Reviews (85)

5-0 out of 5 stars There couldn't be a better Disney movie to own on DVD.
For me, the Fox and the Hound cannot be matched by any other Disney film. Unlike the stiffer, older films and the newer, hokier ones, the atmosphere in TFATH is just perfect, truly a revolutionary point in Disney's timeline. The animation is very fluid and the characters have great design and movement. Most of the songs are more like talking than singing, but they're few and far between and manage to get the point across. A nice change from usual Disney fare in the surprisingly sad ending. Considering I'm pretty desensitized to on-screen emotion, it's unusual that I cry every time I watch this one. It's the ONLY Disney movie that can make me. Even so, there's a number of comedic moments to get rid of the tension. I'm not sure where the Amazon review got the idea that the characters lack depth. Believe me, by the time this one is over, you'll be wanting to see much more of all of them. It's an excellent feature that carries an important message all wrapped up inside a lovable, heartwarming, and poignant story. You owe it to yourself and your children to see this one.

5-0 out of 5 stars An All-Time Favourite!
"The Fox and the Hound" was of the last films to be apart of the "Black Diamond Collection" before the "Masterpiecee Collection" came to the markets in 1994. The film was released into theaters in 1981 & 1988 and came to video in 1994! This movie is a really great and colorful movie to add too any Disney collector's collection!

The story is about a kind woman who takes in an abandoned baby fox after his mother is killed in a hunting trip. She names him Tod and considers him as part of her family. Tod then meets a bloodhound dog named Copper (Who lives right next door to the kind woman) and they eventually become good friends. They have no clue that they are supposed to be enemies (Since hounds hunt foxs and other forest creatures)

After returning on a hunting trip during the winter with his master (To learn how to hunt), Copper realizes how he shouldn't hang around Tod to prevent Tod from getting killed by his master. By this time, they are both grown up and all the fun times that they had together suddenly don't seem to matter anymore. Eventually, Tod and Copper become enemies and it is Copper's mission to hunt down Tod. You'll be surprised on what happens when Copper and Tod to come face to face!

The film also includes some great songs like "The Best Of Friends" and "Goodbye May Seem Forever" (Which I still cry at when I hear that song!) This movie will also make you cry, so make sure to have a tissue in your hand when approaching the middle part of the movie! All in all, it is a really great movie and people young and old will enjoy watching it! 83 minutes.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Good Movie for people of all ages
I am sixteen years old and when I saw this movie, it really brought tears to my eyes. It reminds me of how me and my best friend was. I really enjoyed this movie. Everyone should watch it on Family Nights.

5-0 out of 5 stars Friends to the end.
This is one of my favorite Disney movies. When Widow Tweed takes in a baby fox, whose mother had been shot by hunters, she names it Tod and raises it. About the same time she takes Tod in, her neighbor, Amos Slade brings home a hound dog puppy named Copper.

One day in the woods, Copper and Tod meet and instantly become the best of friends. When fall comes and Amos takes an unwilling Copper along for his winterlong hunting trip, Tod tries to convince his friends, Big Mama, Dinky and Boomer that even though Copper will come back a trained hunting dog, that they will still stay the best of friends. Big Mama tells Tod that a fox and a hound are natural enemies and that, surprise, you ARE a fox.

When the two are finally reunited in the spring, Copper tells Tod that they can't be friends anymore. After a tragic accident involving Amos's other dog Chief, Copper swears that Tod will pay. Widow Tweed, realizing that she can't keep Tod locked up forever, takes Tod to the game preserve and lets him go. Amos resolves to kill the fox, and with Copper's help, goes to track him down. But when Copper has a run in with a bear, Tod comes to his rescue and, ultimately, Copper gets Tod spared from death.

A touching story about friendship that never fails to bring a tear to my eye.

5-0 out of 5 stars Finally a DVD Version of this Awsome movie
I love this movie a lot it has great music like "Best Of Friends"
"Goodbye may seem Forever" and "Thats what Friends Are For" are all great songs on this DVD. ... Read more


144. Ed Wood
Director: Tim Burton
list price: $9.99
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Asin: 6303407188
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 2836
Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential video

Edward D. Wood Jr. was an actor writer-director-producer, occasionally in drag, who combined meager bursts of talent with an undying optimism to create some of the most bizarrely memorable "B" movies to ever come out of Tinseltown. Though Wood died in obscurity as an alcoholic in 1978, his films have been considered cult classics for years. He is consistently voted the worst director who ever lived. You would think this an odd subject, but director Tim Burton harnesses the undying hopefulness that made Wood such a character. Shot in black and white, just like Wood's creations, this stylized, witty production captures the poetic absurdity of Wood's films and his unconventional life. Burton's recreation of Wood's wonderfully awful Plan 9 from Outer Space looks much better than the original low-budget quickie. Burton tackled an extremely strange subject matter for a biopic, but Wood is presented as naive almost to the point of delusion, so the story works. The pace sags in the middle, as the weirdness starts to wear thin, but Depp proves himself an adroit actor, even while wearing angora and a blonde wig. Wood's unconventional repertoire company is faithfully reproduced, including an Academy Award-winning Martin Landau as Bela Lugosi. Landau is pathetic, droll, and charismatic as the elderly junkie who made his last screen appearances in Wood's films. --Rochelle O'Gorman ... Read more

Reviews (150)

4-0 out of 5 stars Good Movie about a horrible film-maker
Ed Wood, Jr. is more beloved than reviled as the "creative mind" behind such grade-z movies as "Plan 9 From Outer Space", "Glen or Glenda". Though it's generally accepted that Wood wasn't playing it straight with his horrible scripts ("he's been killed, murdered....and somebody's responsible!"; "Future events like these will affect you in the future!"), unbelievable special effects and nonesensical plots, this film slightly suggests that Wood actually bought into his own nonsense. Here, Johnny Depp (is there anything he can't do?) plays the beloved but infamous Ed, a WWII vet, failed movie maker and transvestite. Playing Ed as if doing an extended Jon Lovitz impression (his lines delivered all high-pitched and non-stop), Depp's Ed is mostly innocuous and guiless (his genuine belief in the implausible predictions of self-proclaimed seer, Criswell, are a hoot) and incapable of seeing his own sheer lunacy. The script uses "Glen" and "Plan 9" as bookends on Ed's checkered career - with the first film marking his collaboration with the then well-faded horror star, Bela Lugosi (Martin Landau), and the second marking a sort of tribute to the star who died before its completion. Director Tim Burton stocks the film with a well-rounded cast - Bill Murray as transvestite "Bunny" Breckenridge, Jeff Jones as Criswell, Sarah Jessica Parker as Ed's long suffering girl friend, Dolores, Lisa Marie as "Vampira" and George Steele as Tor Johnson - that's a lot of fun, but doesn't do much with them. Bill Murray seems at times the saddest transvestite in history, mulling his paltry earnings from Ed's flicks to pay for his "procedure" while Jones' Criswell puts a damper on things when he makes all too clear how he invents his predictions. Instead, Burton's attentions are reserved for Ed and Bela, with Landau turning in a performance that's in turns hysterical (when revealing his hatred for arch-rival Boris Karloff), heartbreaking and terrifying (the forgotten star dies trying to kick a heavy heroin habit). Even so, the script doesn't stay consistent, with the emotional and humours highs isolated in their own scenes. The script reaches a depth of sorrow and horror when revealing Lugosi's profound suffering in de-tox, yet only briefly. (The script dangles the question of how well the dying star recognized the inanity of Woods' work). In other moments, the film hints at other real-life horrors like Ed's war experiences, but much of the film is actually shy of risk. Much of the conflict is between Ed and his backers - mostly evangelicals conned into thinking they were financing a religious picture and slowly realize Ed's true caliber as a film maker. Ed fights back to preserve his artistic vision without having to prove what his vision is or whether he even has one. His flagging self-confidence is restored by a chance encounter with Orson Welles (Vincent DoNofrio, also an underappreciated Hollywood fixture, his lines dubbed by the same guy who voices "Brain" on "Pinky and the Brain"). The more famed director is about to start work on a troubled epic of his own which, though never named, will be instantly recognizable to film students as "A Touch of Evil" ("Can you imagine Charlton Heston as a Mexican Cop?", Welles laments). Plunging ahead, the film works to the climax of Ed's career- the infamous "Plan 9 from Outer Space"! With Ed's trademark horrible special effects, unintelligible plot and insultingly poor script, "Plan" is almost guaranteed cult-status. Burton only recreates some of the scenes, so the last few minutes of the film plays like a montage of SNL skits, with Ed almost crying as he savors each frame. Leaving Ed before the credits roll on his "masterpiece", we never see Ed's lowly ends, his own substance abuse problems or the more clearly horrible films that marked his latter years. Burton never confronts this and misses an ironic motherlode - whether the ridiculous fantasy of Ed's pictures were supposed to be scary, or whether in seeming scary but so ineptly so, they were actually meant to symbolize a safer world than the one he experienced for real.

5-0 out of 5 stars Plan 10 From INNER Space -- a true American classic!!!!
Yes, Eddie!
Not only Burton's best yet, but one of the finest
American films from the 90's -- or of any decade for that matter.
Cleverly written, lovingly directed, stylishly shot, acted
with empathy, scored and designed with tasteful camp, ED WOOD
is a virtual paen to Hollywoodism (whatever the hell THAT is!).

Just Czapsky's cinematography or Shore's soundtrack alone are
worthy of immense praise. And Tim Burton hits all the right notes flawlessly (for a change). Definitely his Citizen Kane.
Can't praise Depp and Lugosi enough, nor the editing, or....oh, hell! If you have any affection for the 50s, or B-Movies, or Bela Lugosi (God rest his soul), or Maila Nurmi (yum-yum), or angora, or pulp American cinema - meaning REAL American movies - then you should be a fan of this movie, regardless of what you think of Ed Wood's stuff.

Last point.
This movie is overdue for a worthy DVD treatment: docus, bios,
making-of-background -- the whole bit.
Was good enough for an Oscar for Landau, so why are we still waiting?
Yes indeed, pull that (angora) string!

5-0 out of 5 stars No really this is good, honest
Watching Ed Wood movies and watching Ed Wood there is an alarming thing - Ed Wood's life was better suited to a movie than he was as a director! And as he tried woefully to express this side of his personality to the public with the woeful Glen or Glenda ( " Did you see the movie? Uh huh. Worst movie you saw in your life? OK but how about.....hello hello! )

Johnny Depp is hilarious as Ed and really plays the part extraordinarily well. You almost feel sorry for him as he gets rejected from everyone because he seems to have his intentions right no matter how skewed they end up being.

Of course Ed has a fetish for women's clothing which would make itself known in the film Glen or Glenda but Dolores wouldn't know about this until she read the script. Let's just say she doesn't take to it as well as Ed's rather naive script would like her to be! Although I have to admit that Sarah Jessica Parker is not exactly that easy to like in the movie

Martin Landau is the one who I think plays Bela Lugosi and I have to say that the resemblance is uncanny that you almost feel like singing the line from the Bauhaus song Bela Lugosi's Dead -" Oh Bela, Bela's not dead " indeed!

Bill Murray is fantastic in his role. As ever, he has the best lines in this movie. One of the best roles I've seen him in

I've seen this film - it must be about nearly 7 or 8 times and it's so funny that some of the lines in it are implanted in my head. One that has to be watched for those interested in seeing something a little unusual

5-0 out of 5 stars My Favorite Movie of All Time
I have watched this movie probably 100 times and can never get enough. I cannot believe it hasn't been released on DVD yet.

The portrayal of Ed Wood is of a guy that never gives up even though he is terrible. Ever the optimist and the king of spin. He gives his pre-released version of 'Glen or Glenda' to a producer. When ED is told it's the worst movie the producer has ever seen---Ed's answer, "My next one will be better!"

When Ed is told that Bela will be kicked out of re-hab due to lack of insurance---Ed goes to Bela and tells him, "The tests all came back great---you can go home now."

Ed is a testament that it is more important to be positive and tenacious----rather than good.

Martin Landau REALLY deserved this Oscar. Like another reviewer said, he becomes Lugosi. I really feel Martin's portrayal of Bela more than I have ever felt any on-screen performance---ever. He brings me to tears almost every time. It's heartbreaking, funny and perfect in every single way.

From getting the whole crew baptized to finance a movie----to parading around the set in a wig and a dress. It's a great movie.

Enjoy!

5-0 out of 5 stars Release it on DVD already!!
I'd heard good things about Ed Wood from critics, and decided to rent it to see for myself. After all, most of the movies I enjoy the most are movies that are panned viciously by said critics. Guess what? for once, I agreed with the "screen snobs" and enjoyed this movie just as much as the ones normally dismissed by the critics.

Johnny Depp is brilliant as the ever optimistic, supremely untalented Ed Wood. It is strange to contemplate the irony that it took such a top notch director, cast and writer to honor someone like Ed.

Speaking of brilliant, don't miss Martin Landau's Oscar winning turn as Bela Lugosi. By turns hilariously profane and poignantly troubled, Landau earned his Oscar for this part.

I just wish the powers that be at the studios would hurry up and put this gem on DVD so that we can all enjoy it! ... Read more


145. What Dreams May Come
Director: Vincent Ward
list price: $14.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00000IBRX
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 14510
Average Customer Review: 4.05 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (344)

4-0 out of 5 stars Visually spectacular (unbelievably cheesy storyline)
I know "What Dreams May Come" is a constant punching bag for movie critics alike and it wasn't exactly a blockbuster smash for Robin Williams but I sincerely like this film. I first saw "What Dreams May Come" when it was in the movie theaters. It was total eye candy with the gorgeous colors and the art-like quality. I felt like I was watching an artist creating his art work. The premise of the film is a bit silly. Robin Williams's character Chris is killed in a freak accident, leaving his emotionally unstable wife Annie played by Annabella Sciorra devasted and alone. The viewer also finds out that their two children were killed earlier in a car accident so when Chris dies, Annabella is completely consumed by grief and chooses that life is not worth living any more. Chris is sent to heaven which is basically a Monet painting. The bright vivid colors were stunning and made it a joy to watch. Cuba Gooding Jr. welcomes Chris into the after life and eventually helps Chris in his quest to find Annie. At the time, I enjoyed the storyline but as I was watching it tonight on tv, I never realized until now just how hokey the storyline and dialogue could be. Despite the hokiness of the film, I still enjoy watching "What Dreams May Come". I think my favorite scenes had to be when Chris literally went to purgatory. The images and colors were spectacular. Those scenes of people falling from the waves as well as from the air and exploding when hitting the ground was stunning to say the least. Those scenes were pure eye candy. "What Dreams May Come" is a good movie. It isn't nowhere as emotionally manipulative as "Patch Adams" was except maybe for a few scenes that involved the children. Otherwise "What Dreams May Come" is a good popcorn movie. It may not be Masterpiece Theater but I will take this movie over something as tripe as "Patch Adams" or overblown as "Armaggedeon" any day.

5-0 out of 5 stars I wish my dreams were this cool.
What Dreams May Come is a very powerful movie. Simply put, it can make you think some very deep thoughts.

The story is very moving and brilliantly crafted. The main character is a doctor named Chris (Robin Williams). He has a wife (Annabella Sciorra) and two kids. His family is great and he seems to be living the American dream. Then his children are killed in a car accident and his life is shattered. He spends the next four years trying to recover from the tragedy. Then he is killed in another traffic accident and the story takes off as he goes to the beautiful afterlife.

The movie seamlessly transitions from present to flashback to give a sense that time is irrelevant in the afterlife and to fill in the rest of the story. The first person he sees is a young version of the doctor he apprenticed under (Cuba Gooding Jr.) who later turns out to be someone else, but I won't tell you because I don't want to ruin any parts of the movie. He is then taken to a beautiful heaven, which is actually his mental re-creation of one of his wife's paintings. He later learns that his wife has committed suicide and in doing so has trapped herself in a never-ending spiral of guilt (a.k.a. Hell). Chris then has to travel to the depths of Hell to find and attempt to bring back his wife.

This movie is loaded with abstract thoughts and themes. For example: Your obsessions in life will become your afterlife; Thought is real, physical is the illusion; God lets bad things happen to good people; and far too many others for me to list here.

The movie is visually breathtaking and the computer-generated graphics add greatly to the realness of the movie. The acting is good and director obviously knew what he was doing. I will recommend this movie to anyone who has ever contemplated his or her existence.

4-0 out of 5 stars Visually beautiful and theologically interesting
There are surprisingly few movies dealing with a nonterrestrial afterlife. While there are hundreds of films dealing with the existence of individuals following death as embodied or disembodied spirits on earth, there are remarkably few that provide any glimpse of heaven. The few that do tend to present it as an inconceivably white, vast, and indistinct place, from HERE COMES MR. JORDAN to A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH to THE HORN BLOWS AT MIDNIGHT. In contrast to these other films, WHAT DREAMS MAY COME stands out as one of the most intensely colorful, beautiful, and vividly concrete films in cinema history.

The cast of the film is strong, but it would be a mistake to imagine that they are the reason for the film's success. Robin Williams as Chris Nielsen, Cuba Gooding Jr., Rosalind Chao (who I previously mainly knew only from STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION), Max von Sydow, and the lovely but underused (not only in this film, but by Hollywood in general) Annabella Sciorra all hand in wonderful performances, but they are largely overwhelmed by the astonishing beauty of the sets, the inconceivably vivid colors, and the marvelous use of light. No performers could have competed, though they try gamely.

I find the film especially interesting for theological reasons. Ron Bass based the screenplay on a novel by Richard Mattheson. I must confess to not knowing the work of either, but I would lay heavy money that one of them (probably Mattheson) knew well C. S. Lewis's THE GREAT DIVORCE. In that work Lewis was concerned to lay out a concept of heaven and hell that did not regard God as responsible for sending people to hell. Instead, he described an afterlife in which people in hell still had the option of leaving hell and departing for heaven. These two ideas--of people placing themselves in hell and of having the option to leave hell for heaven--drive the metaphysics of WHAT DREAMS MAY COME, as I'm sure anyone who has seen the film will recognize.

So why do I give the film only four stars after all the nice things I have said about it? Primarily because the film doesn't really have all that much of a story to tell. The plot feels like a short subject stretched to feature length film proportions. Once you subtract all the amazing visuals, there simply wasn't that much to the film. The challenge for the filmmakers was primarily padding out the action of the film. Nonetheless, I do recommend this as an interesting and intensely beautiful film, despite the slender narrative.

Interestingly, the title of the film comes from Hamlet's famous soliloquy, in which he ponders whether or not to commit suicide. In the end, he decides not to because of the dreams that the dead may dream, presumably worse for having killed oneself. But such dreams did not prevent Annie Nielsen in the film from committing suicide. It is a nice ironical touch.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Different Type of Love Story
This is a wonderful tale of death and love. Robin Williams dies in a car crash and wakes up in heaven. He sees his old dog and friends from his life that have died before him along with his two children that have died in a previous car accident. Robin finds out he that his wife is having an impossible time of living without him. She ends up committing suicide and then is sent ot hell. The rest of the movie is Robin on his quest to find his wife in Hell. The movie is stunning in detail and is truly beautiful to look at. Cuba Gooding Jr. and Max Von Syndow give stellar performances as supporting actors in this film. The DVD has the usual extras including a less than happy alternate ending.

4-0 out of 5 stars A great movie despite some flaws
"What Dreams May Come" is an overlooked film that should have gotten more attention than it did. While not perfect, it's one of the most visually stunning and thought-provoking films to come around in a long time. Chris (Robin Williams) and Annie (Annabella Sciorra) are a happy couple who suffer the devastating loss of their children. Shortly afterwards Chris dies himself and goes to an afterlife, which turns out to be a surreal lush dreamworld that is a reflection of his wife's paintings (which deservedly won the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects). While there Chris meets an "angel" (Cuba Gooding Jr.) who guides him through the transition. Meanwhile, back in the real world, Annie becomes unable to cope with all the pain and losses and takes her own life, sending her to Hell. Determined to rescue Annie from an eternity in damnation, Chris sets out to find her and re-establish their bond together.

This movie could have easily been a masterpiece, with such a great cast, excellent visual effects and production. However, there are two things which severely take away from its effectiveness. For one, the flashback style becomes tedious after a bit and interrupts the flow of the story. Many other reviewers have commented on this. It's a major drawback. And two, some scenes simply do not work. For example, when Chris arrives in Hell and begins maneuvering around the heads sticking out of the ground. This scene is done in a humorous way, seemingly for comic relief. It simply does not work and is majorly out of place. Comic relief isn't what should happen here.

Aside from these flaws, "What Dreams May Come" is an enlightening viewing experience and will stay with you long after you're finished watching it. It can be interpreted in many ways: a film about the possibility of life after death: a film about never-ending love: a film about affirming the beauty of life. However you may see it, you will surely take away at least something from it after the credits roll. ... Read more


146. Saving Private Ryan
Director: Steven Spielberg
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Sales Rank: 3635
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147. Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse
Director: Eleanor Coppola, Fax Bahr, George Hickenlooper
list price: $14.95
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Asin: 6302414016
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 8466
Average Customer Review: 4.87 out of 5 stars
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Hearts of Darkness is an engrossing, unwavering look back at Francis Coppola's chaotic, catastrophe-plagued Vietnam production, Apocalypse Now. Filled with juicy gossip and a wonderful behind-the-scenes look at the stressful world of moviemaking, the documentary mixes on-location home movies shot in the Philippines by Eleanor Coppola, the director's wife, with revealing interviews with the cast and crew, shot 10 years later. Similar to Burden of Dreams, Les Blank's absorbing portrait of Werner Herzog's struggle to make Fitzcarraldo, the film chronicles Coppola's eventual decent into obsessive psychosis as everything that could go wrong does go wrong. Storms destroy sets, money evaporates, the Philippine government continually harasses the director, Coppola has romantic affairs, and he can't write the story's ending. Everything is captured on film. In the most disturbing scene, we watch Martin Sheen have a drunken nervous breakdown while his director goads him on (he eventually suffered a heart-attack, but finished the film).

Other incredible footage is not visual, but aural as the film includes tapes Eleanor Coppola recorded without Francis's knowledge. In them, he truly sounds like a madman as he confesses his fears about making a bomb of a movie. But while Hearts of Darkness is an amazing, voyeuristic experience, its importance lies in the personal reflections offered by those involved. Sheen, Coppola, and Dennis Hopper speak frankly without embarrassment, offering us an essential piece of film history. --Dave McCoy ... Read more

Reviews (15)

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Documentary Is Even Better than the Actual Movie
Shot by Francis Ford Coppolla's wife, Hearts of Darkness is an incredible, one hour fifty minute documentary that reveals the horrors of making the very popular Apocalypse Now. The film took forever to make, driving many of its participants to the brink of insanity, not just Coppolla, who was emotionally-unstable for much of the film. Viewers of this fascinating documentary will be amazed to learn that Harvey Keitel was originally cast as Willard, but was dropped after only two weeks of shooting. Though only 36 years-old, Martin Sheen suffered a heart attack during filming, an event that further postponed its debuts in theaters. There is some really great footage included here, especially the shooting of the opening sequence of the film which involves a very drunk Sheen lashing out as both his character and himself (at that point, Sheen was experiencing a lot of hostility towards Coppolla and had it out with him right then and there, an episode that would appear in the finished movie). Even if you didn't particularly care for Apocalypse Now, you will most likely find Hearts of Darkness interesting, nonetheless. It is a magnificent look at the troubles and triumphs of a film crew headed by a somewhat mad, but brilliant director. This shouldn't be missed.

5-0 out of 5 stars A stirring portrait of the making of a masterpiece
Subtitled, "A Filmmaker's Apocalypse", this 1991 film is a documentary about the making of "Apocalypse Now", the 1979 film based on Joseph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness". Set in Vietnam, it is the story of a captain, Martin Sheen, and his crew's mission to find and kill an insane colonel, Marlon Brando, who had created his own kingdom deep in the Jungle. On the way, everyone is touched with the evil around them. This summer I saw the re-edited version of the film and have been intrigued by it ever since. When I heard about this "Hearts of Darkness" I just HAD to see it.

The filming of Apocalypse Now was supposed to take just sixteen weeks at a budget of $13 million. It wound up costing more than $30 million, much of it put up by Francis Coppola himself, and took almost three years to get to the public. Coppola' wife Eleanor and their three children went along on location in the Philippines. She was interested in making a documentary and shot a lot of behind-the-scenes footage, even secretly recording private conversations she had with her husband about the film. The authenticity of the experience really comes through, as everyone involved with the production seemed to go a little bit insane.

Coppola had serious doubts throughout and we hear his words of despair as he thinks he's making a bad movie. We see the terrible typhoon that destroyed all the sets and realized that the helicopters that were being used for the shooting were actually property of the Philippine government who kept calling them away to fight a real disturbance that was going on just ten miles away. We see shots and scenes that never made it into the original film (although much of it eventually made it into the 2001 "Redux" version). We see and overweight Marlon Brando who insisted on being filmed in shadows. And we are right there to watch the filming of the scene in which Martin Sheehan has a mental breakdown. In order to do this he became bleary-eyed drunk, cut his thumb on a mirror and used the blood as part of the scene. The intensity is chilling and when, a short time afterward, he has a life-threatening heart attack at the age of 36, we're all there to see him as he is given first aid.

Now, years later, some of the actors are interviewed about their experiences. We learn that they did a lot of drugs during many of the scenes - acid, speed, marijuana, alcohol, which certainly added to the authenticity as well as the craziness of the whole production. Robert Duval talks about how his famous line "I love the smell of napalm in the morning was improvised. And the whole cast talks about how they improvised a massacre scene. Laurence Fishburne was only 14 when the film was made, a real coming-of-age experience for him. But this very stirring film portrait belongs to Francis Coppola. We get to meet him as a very imperfect human being doing his best to create an art form out of the script, changing it constantly as he went along, and eventually turning out a small masterpiece which went on to be nominated for eight academy awards.

I give this video my highest recommendation. It is a "must" for movie buffs. And an essential education for anyone involved in filmmaking itself. Don't miss it!

5-0 out of 5 stars A Great documentary&RIP Marlon Brando
this Documentary truly hits behind the scenes&captures the strong acting&Overall Chemistry of the Film.Much Props to Marlon Brando who shows why He is One of the Mount Rushmore's of Actor's.you get a great Climpse at the workings&the overall concepts&Direction of this Film.truly a Must have.

5-0 out of 5 stars "Hearts of Darkness" IS "Apocalypse Now"
The only known versions of this "essential" documentary are V-taped from the "Pay-Per-View" broadcast. ALL officially packaged VHS versions have long since disappeared from the video store shelves once it was discovered that this title was pulled "out" of release. Now my 1st reaction was that they were preparing to "bundle" "Hearts of Darkness" with a Special Edition release of "Apocalypse Now:Redux" and was thoroughly dumbfounded to find out otherwise.

That said I will take this oppurtunity to advocate that the ONLY other RIGHT way to release this "essential" documentary left would be as part of a 25th Anniversary ( "Apoc..Now" was 1979 release ) Special Edition Collector's Boxed Set of "Apocalypse Now".I say this because ALL afficianadoes of masterworks of filmcraft will agree that you just CAN NOT apprreciate "Apocalyspe Now" ( or Redux version for that matter ) WITHOUT the inclusion of "Hearts of Darkness" .

In essense, "Apocalypse Now" and "Hearts of Darkness" are ONE FILM and are to be experienced as such. I would also stress that suched a special Edition Boxed Set would be found slakcing "with extreme predjudice" if it didn't also include a "commentary" version from none other than AND inclusion of the ORIGINAL ending.
That amazingly surreal soundtrack intensifying the mysterious destruction of Kurtz's temple compound makes the full ending credits far more dramtically displayed by being displayed "in context" with the obliteration of the world of "Apocalypse Now"; an ending also portraying a rather telling , if subconcious, expression of Copolla's psyche at the time of "that" final cut.
The eerie set of events and the surreal convergences of professional lives on the line surrounding the making of "Apocalypse Now" is one of the great , even historic , filmmaking stories of the 20th century and I effortlessly rank it right up there with the story of the making of "Citizen Kane". Orson Wells' wunderkind stature in pulling off the "Citizen kane" masterwork humbles even Francis Ford Copolla ( which I'm quite sure HE would readily admit ). Copolla was cetainly in awe of that Wellsian masterpiece, as well as of Wells himself, when making his artistic masterpiece, but the parallels of BOTH of their artistic daring and "risking it all" to get their vision on film are striking and awesome nonetheless.
( Perhaps one day we'll see someone equally surreal, like some future Terry Gillaim, attempt making an even more Wagnerian-proportioned dramatization about the making of "Apocalypse Now" the way they made "RKO 281: The Battle Over Citizen Kane" ).
Anyway, the absolute importance that "Hearts of Darkness" serves toward understanding just what planet "Apocalypse Now' came from is inarguably cast in stone as "essential"!
I just wanted to bring in some salient points not yet presented here in making the case for DVD release of "Hearts of Darkness".
My job is done here.

5-0 out of 5 stars Life As Art As Life As Art As Life As Art...
It's truly a shame that this amazing documentary is now out of print. Hunt down a used copy or find it at your local video rental place. It's well worth the effort.

The amazing thing about the Coppola's efforts is the circular karma that seemed to go into overdrive: Francis tries to make a film based on "Heart of Darkness", a story about a man and a country that gets lost in his mental interior while probing the interior of an alien land. He uses the story to try and tell the story of a different man and a different country getting lost in their mental interiors while probing the interior of another alien land. In the process Coppola, trying to deal with his lead actor getting lost in his mental interior while probing the interior of an alien land, loses himself in his mental interior while probing...well, you get the picture. ... Read more


148. Thelma & Louise
Director: Ridley Scott
list price: $4.94
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Asin: 6302250269
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 2254
Average Customer Review: 4.42 out of 5 stars
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Thelma & Louise is a feminist manifesto writ large on the big screen, a smart and funny gender reversal of the standard Hollywood buddy formula, a road movie extraordinaire, with characters who became instant cultural icons. No matter how you define it, Ridley Scott's 1991 box-office hit pinched a nerve and made the cover of national news magazines for tweaking gender politics like no movie before or since. Callie Khouri's screenplay overhauls the buddy formula with its story about two best friends (Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis) who embark on a liberating adventure that turns into an interstate police chase after a traumatic incident makes both women into fugitives; they are en route to a destiny they could never have imagined. The perfect casting of Sarandon and Davis makes Thelma & Louise a movie for the ages, and Brad Pitt became an overnight star after his appearance as the con-artist cowboy who gives Davis a memorable (but costly) night in a roadside motel. --Jeff Shannon ... Read more

Reviews (90)

5-0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable "Buddy Film" classic
Is there anything more satisfying then a romantic, funny, action-packed, well scripted AND well acted movie? Perhaps, but after watching "Thelma and Louise" I certainly have my doubts. Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis star in this highly entertaining, truly heartfelt movie. When one begins this film, you immediately feel the need to choose a "favorite" between the two characters, Thelma or Louise. It is impossible. You can masquerade that you like Thelma more, or that Louise tickles your fancy...but the truth is that both characters are immediately likeable and hard not to love.

The basic plot: Thelma and Louise go on a seemingly weekend long roadtrip as a brief escape from their drab, unexciting lives. Their first night out, Thelma has a terrifying experience...Louise, in her efforts to save her, commits a major crime. Suddenly, they are no longer two pals going on a trip...they are fugitives running for their freedom and from the law. As the story progresses, their list of crimes grows longer, and their chances at reaching their destination seem to get slimmer as they get closer to it.

A thrilling romp through the southwest, with beautiful acting, writing and cinematography, this movie is a classic "buddy movie", "road movie" and "chick flick". Whatever label it is given, it is one of the best of its kind.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Road Movie!
This is an instant classic. Controversial and creating two instant female American icons. Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis are nothing short than perfect as Thelma & Louise, both creating equally likable and complex characters. Considered to be a female buddy road-trip movie, but this film is much, much more, mainly because of the excellent multi-layered screenplay. Ridley Scott directed an instant American classic. Some scenes are now considered classics, such as the ending. The 'male' part of the cast are all excellent, Harvey Keitel and Michael Madsen are great. Brad Pitt is also a stand-out in the role that shot him into stardom. Extremely entertaining and even poignant near the end. This one is in a category all of it's own. From a scale of 1-10 I give this film an 8!

5-0 out of 5 stars A remarkable movie!
Originality is the supreme adjective for this picture. It won deservedly the Academy Award as Original script. Ridley Scott made an authentical road movie but loaded with humor , cynicism , haunting and above all very anti macho movie.
The sinister fact that will turn a twist of fate in these two women who only wanted to have fun just for a while will become in a permanent and menacing nightmare for both of them .
The spectacular landscapes are a huge background all the way reminds us Paris Texas . The use of big lenses and the arresting images walks together with a solid script .
Brad Pitt appears briefly as the hitch hike guy who eventually seduces Thelma . Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis are the mirror images of Sundance Kid , you may consider it a speculation, but think it carefully . Since the accidental murder , and the sweet smell of the risk when Geena robes a supermarket , the dramatic car chase is very close in spirit to the sudamerican getaway and above all the ending sequence .
Keitel works efficiently , once more and Scott shows us once more why he's on the top direction .
Consider this one from its release as one of the most powerful nineties cult movies!

5-0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Buddy Movie.
This is definately Ridley Scott's best film to date. Thema and Louise may be one of the most popular chick flicks, but you do not have to be a woman to like it. This film is the absolute perfect movie to watch with your best friend. The way that Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis take you into the lives of these two friends is amazing. On their jouney they encounter lots of characters including a perverted truck driver, and a young drifter played by Brad Pitt. The movie all in all is good, and I would definately give it two thumbs way way up.

5-0 out of 5 stars A modern classic
I saw an interview with Susan Sarandon, and she said that "Thelma and Louise isn't about feminism, it's about human liberation." I completely agree.

If you put the sexual politics aside, what you have is a story of two human beings who have spent their whole lives being oppressed and controlled by other people. Louise (Sarandon) is a waitress with a tragic past and an unreliable boyfriend. Thelma is a housewife with an arrogant, controlling husband. The two decide to embark on an impromptu vacation, but while stopping for a couple of drinks at a redneck nightclub, Thelma is almost raped by a lecherous customer, and Louise shoots and kills him in the parking lot. Instead of going to the police, the two decide to skip the country and head to Mexico, but a string of unfortunate events forces the two to commit even more crimes, turning them into bona fide fugitives and outlaws.

Strangely, what the two characters discover is that their new lives as outlaws are more satisfying than the stifled lives they led before. At the end of the film, the two make a choice to remain free and never surrender, despite the consequences.

This film asks the question: is the only way to be free in our society to be an outlaw? The answer just might be yes. ... Read more


149. The Lion King - Special Edition
Director: Rob Minkoff, Roger Allers
list price: $24.99
our price: $24.99
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Asin: B00008VPUP
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 1795
Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars
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Not an ideal choice for younger kids, this hip and violent animated feature from Disney was nevertheless a huge smash in theaters and on video, and it continues to enjoy life in an acclaimed Broadway production. The story finds a lion cub, son of a king, sent into exile after his father is sabotaged by a rivalrous uncle. The little hero finds his way into the "circle of life" with some new friends and eventually comes back to reclaim his proper place. Characters are very strong, vocal performances by the likes of Jeremy Irons, Nathan Lane, and Whoopi Goldberg are terrific, the jokes are aimed as much (if not more) at adults than kids, the animation is sometimes breathtaking, and the music is more palatable than in many Disney features. But be cautious: this is too intense for the Rugrat crowd. --Tom Keogh ... Read more

Reviews (339)

5-0 out of 5 stars Well worth your hard earned money
This new two disc set for the Lion King is yet another masterful DVD production job by the Disney folks. The video and audio quality are top notch, with plenty of choices how to see the film (both original and extended). There are an amazing amount of extras included on disc two, it will take some hunting to find them all, and quite a bit of extra time to view the entire contents. A few are overly self promotional, but there is so much stuff here, just skip to the next item if that bothers you. Some of the games are actually fun too.

With both Lion King and Sleeping Beauty being newly released on DVD right now, if you can only get one of them, there is no question this is by far the better choice. The impressive animation, the story, the fantastic sound, the extras are all superior in this Lion King package. This still isn't my favorite Disney release (Roger Rabbit will always have that honor), but maybe top 5--certainly top 8.

Lion King Platinum is well worth the investment for your DVD collection. Your family will get many years of enjoyment from it.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Lion King
The first time I ever saw "The Lion King" was on September 14th 1995, the day it came out on video. Strangely, I went to all of Disney's releases from "The Little Mermaid" to "Aladdin" (including rereleases of their older classics) but missed out on "The Lion King". Silly me. "The Lion King" is a masterpiece. The film is visually amazing. Some scenes stand out in particular; such as the wild-beast stampede and the opening sequence. The movie wouldn't be completed without the powerful score and songs, composed by Hans Zimmer and Elton John, respectively. The Oscar-winning "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" and the ever-popular "Circle Of Life" are all here. The characters in this movie have also become wildly popular, especially Timon and Pumbaa. The villain, Scar, is the ultimate villian: evil and deceitful, yet wit and sarcastic. In this 2-disc special edition, the film looks like a video-game, in terms of sharpness and clearity. You won't believe of how smooth the image can be. "The Lion King" is a movie that deserves all the praise and success that it had gotten.

5-0 out of 5 stars Earns its place among the old Disney classics
Animation films are incredibly tricky. Adults(or just mainly uptight people view animated films as kids only. However kids see them as great pieces of film that they "get". For once, Disney gets it right. This was really a powerhouse film when it came out and held the record for the biggest animated film of all time(until recently when a so-so film about finding a fish called Nemo came out).

Simba is a young lion in the Serengeti(they call it the Pride Lands though) who just can't wait to be king. However, he's a mischievous little cub who gets into trouble a bit easy. When a terrible tragedy strikes, Simba exiles himself where he meets a warthog and meerkat and develops a carefree lifestyle. Now an adult, he returns to the Pride Lands to reclaim the throne from his evil uncle, Scar.

Sounds a bit like Hamlet huh? But you won't care. Many impossibly catchy songs, funny moments and jokes and words that even appeal to adults(do you really think a kid would understand "illustrating the differences in your royal mangerial approaches"? Exactly.)

Voice acting is top notch, animation is absolutely gorgeous, and it's done by hand by the way, none of that Finding Nemo/Toy Story/A Bug's Life CGI stuff. There's a reason why this is considered the best Disney film but you owe it to yourself to find out why.

5-0 out of 5 stars This is NOT a violent movie for kids
I'm sorry, but if you found this movie to be too violent for kids over the age of five, then you're robbing your children of a valuable experience. Yes, there is death. Yes, it is not a safe and simple death. But kids CAN handle it. An evil man killed a great man. It's not a theme that kids should enjoy, but it's one that is of particular resonance to us as Americans. This movie is simple, beautiful and moving- seemingly one of Disney's last treasures. While the Broadway show may be even more moving, this movie has the power to move us. I hope you'll see it if you haven't. I hope you'll let your kids watch it if you haven't. And I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I have. Humbly submitted, -Matt Calcara, Overland Park, KS

5-0 out of 5 stars Best movie of all times
I really love this movie it was so cute and the songs were great I gave my neice this movie when she was born and she watches it all the time and she is 7 years old now Thanks to everyone who created it your the best ... Read more


150. Blade Runner
Director: Ridley Scott
list price: $14.99
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Asin: 6300146154
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 2361
Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars A wonderfully dark film!
Blade Runner tells of human-like robots which are in danger of gaining emotions and becomming too human to exhist by human laws. I loved this movie when I first saw it and I find it wonderful to notice in the background the company logos (which at the time were powerful up and coming companies) of which most are out of business (though Atari has made a comeback). The soundtrack sets the tone and the weather (which it always is raining in the film except for the very ending) also keep things looking bleak. I do enjoy the directors cut cause I am a big fan of Widescreen... but that is the only reason I like it. I wish they had kept the narration (or at least had a two sided disk so a person could chose to have the original unedited narration or the directors cut version). I know some people think the narration is the studios way of saying that the audiance cannot understand the film without dumbing-it-down with narration. This is definitily not the case. The narration reminds me of those old TV Cop dramas where the cops thoughts are always stated as the action is happening. I do feel that it adds to the film. I highly recommend the movie regardless of which version you see. Rutger Hauer is my favorite.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Dirty Future run by Businessmen and Politicians
It is never enough for the powerful: in this film they manufacture people and then "recall" them like Chevy did the Vega... but we find that people aren't machines even when they are manufactured. The man who is called to track down the last of the androids falls in tough love with the last best of her breed!

5-0 out of 5 stars Dark Sci Fi at its best
A truly fabulous cinematic work, I only wish it was still available for purchase. Philip Dick would be proud of the adaption of his novel. Vangelis renders a beautiful score. No one does it better than Rutger Hauer.

5-0 out of 5 stars A depressingly dark moody film that makes you think.
I have both versions, the original release with Ford's voice over, and the "Director's" cut (which is surprisingly, shorter than the original). Of the two, I tend to prefer the original.

Purists tend to find the voice over of the original distracting and un-necessary, but I find it adds to the mood.

I love the cinematography.

It also sports early or first appearances of many now well known actors.

I would consider this movie to be within my top favorite movies.

5-0 out of 5 stars The very best science-fiction/action/romance ever made.
Okay, the voice-over detective's dialog is hokey, but I love it; it's Sam Spade with smog. Years after the original release, the movie isn't dated or tired. It may always be my favourite flick. ... Read more


151. The Godfather, Part III (Final Director's Cut)
Director: Francis Ford Coppola
list price: $14.95
our price: $13.46
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Asin: 6302158176
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 627
Average Customer Review: 3.57 out of 5 stars
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Sixteen years after Francis Ford Coppola won his second Oscar for The Godfather II (his first was for the 1972 Godfather), the director and star Al Pacino attempted to revive the concept one more time. Despite an elaborate plot that involves Michael Corleone seeking redemption through the Vatican while simultaneously preparing his nephew (Andy Garcia) to take over the Corleone family, the film fails to take shape as a truly meaningful experience in the way the preceding movies do. Still, Pacino is very moving as an elder Michael, filled with regret and trying hard to make amends with his wife (Diane Keaton) and grown children (one of whom is played, and not all that well, by the director's daughter, Sofia Coppola). --Tom Keogh ... Read more

Reviews (104)

2-0 out of 5 stars A movie that should not have been attempted
"The Godfather", and its sequel, are quite possibly the greatest films made after the golden age of movies. It's all the more disappointing, then, that "Godfather Part 3" is a turgid, impotent movie that is always trying to set up a big finale, but never concludes anything convincingly. The cinematography lives up to the Godfather pedigree, but that's where the similarity ends. Coppola is clearly trying to revive feelings for Michael Corleone, his now-estranged wife Kay, and introduce newer characters like Sonny Corleone's bastard son (acted superbly by Andy Garcia) and the family's lawyer (George Hamilton). But years after Michael's overboard vendettas in "Godfather 2", the story has too much catching up to do to draw the viewer in. Coppola uses a heavy-handed technique to bring the audience along. The film often recalls previous scenes: the opener is a social gathering... there's a bloody "hit" that wipes out assorted gangsters... there's kitchen plotting... there's an Italian festival as a backdrop for murder. The look is there, but the feel isn't. Equally distressing is the casting. Hamilton's tanned, lounge lizard oiliness make him more of a corporate than "criminal" lawyer. Garcia should have acted the part of Michael's son. Sofia Coppola is sadly wooden, and I suspect she's not just acting the part of a bored princess. Michael's son is totally useless, as are the myriad characters flitting in and out of this film. We get a pope, a priest (unconvincing as Tom Hagen's son), a shifty cardinal, two beefcake bodyguards, a cowardly financier, an assassin who's not very good, and Father Guido Sarducci. Michael's old hitman Al Neri looks a bit paunchy as he fingers the chocolates that conceal his pistol... and what the heck is Brigitte Fonda doing in this story? In the first two films, every character mattered to the plot; there wasn't a dead character ('scuse the pun) in either story. Arguably, the first "Godfather" was a complete entity that needed no sequel. Coppola gambled and came up a winner with Part 2, but it's a tall order to repeat that formula in Part 3. When I fire up the "Godfather" films, I have no trouble forgetting that Number Three was ever made.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great way to end the classic epic
i Don't understand why everyone are hating on ''the Godfather III'' after all it was nominated for a best picture in 1990 (Goodfellas should have won that year)true it's was not as brilliant as the first film mostly because there was too much recylcling going , but overall Godfather III was a good film .

4-0 out of 5 stars Lay Off Sophia!
Sophia Copola has been bashed too much, and it's undeserved. While she had no experience, she had a certain sweetness about her. She's also much prettier than Wynona Ryder- YEAH, YOU HEARD ME! Coppola had a certain innocence about her. After all, she was never convicted of stealing.

The bigger problem is with Robert Duvall's absence as the lawyer Tom Hagan. Without his charasmatic presence, the film is seriously lacking. But the film does have its moments.

3-0 out of 5 stars Good Movie, but ruined the Trilogy
Godfather 3 was a movie saved by one person, Al Pacino. His powerful acting in the first two Godfather films was without a doubt visable in the third. But this movie was destroyed by horrible acting. Andy Garcia portrays Micheal's (Al Pacino) nephew from his dead brother, Sonny. Andy plays Vinnie, a youthful hoodlum looking for power and respect. This movie got Andy Garcia famous, even though it was obvious he was just trying to copy Marlon Brando and Al Pacino's prefomance's in the last two Godfathers, and he did a horrible job and tore down the legacy of Godfather with every scene he was in.

But it wasn't just Andy Gracia who tore apart this movie, oh no. He had some help. Sofia Coppola plays Mary Corleone, Micheal's daughter. You could tell she had no idea what was going on. It was like Francis Ford, the director, just told her to say random things without even giving her a script. Marlon Brando, may he now rest in peace, was probably disgusted with this movie before he died.

To make this movie even worse, they decided to have a dramactic ending scene with Mary shot by a some random person sent to kill Micheal. This scene ends with Al Pacino screaming his lungs out, and the whole time I was sitting there saying, "That guy did you a favor by killing off that unholy death angle sent from the deep dark bowels of heck." The final scene, was indeed, a sad one, but with the acting skills in this movie, I don't blame Micheal for dying. I do have to admit, there are no words to describe the death scene of Micheal Corleone, because that marked the end of the Godfater lagacy, hopefully, forever. But don't get me wrong, I still love the Godfather trilogy, and always will. It just needs to end, here and now.

If you ever plan to watch this movie, tape a knife under your couch, just in case you feel like killing yourself after seeing the horrible acting presented by the infamous Andy Garcia and Sofia Coppola, The Destroyers of the Godfather Trilogy.

2-0 out of 5 stars soso
godfather III was entertaining, in that we got to see what happened to some of the characters we loved (or hated) from the first two movies. this alone is reason enough to rent it (not buy!). however, godfather III should NOT have been made. the moral of the story is fulfilled with the last scene from godfather II, where michael is sitting alone, old and graying, face lined from a stressful life. after watching "II" i felt that the corleone tale indeed had nowhere left to go. anything after that would be harmful to the artistic acheivement of the first two movies. mario puzo said that his godfather books were really stories of family. michael the all-american marine, from the beginning of "I," and michael the morally bankrupt head of a crime family at the end of "II," should be seen with what has happened to his family along the way. THAT is what the godfather story means. godfather III isn't useless. again, it's fun to see what has happened to those interesting characters from the first two movies. but i wouldn't trade all three hours of director's cut "III" for that last scene in "II"! ... Read more


152. Bridget Jones - The Edge of Reason
Director: Beeban Kidron
list price: $23.98
our price: $22.78
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Asin: B00070QXLI
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 3105
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Although it's been three years since we last saw Bridget (Renée Zellweger), only a few weeks have passed in her world. She is, as you'll remember, no longer a "singleton," having snagged stuffy but gallant Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) at the end of the 2001 film. Now she's fallen deeply in love and out of her neurotic mind with paranoia: Is Mark cheating on her with that slim, bright young thing from the law office? Will the reappearance of dashing cad Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant) further spell the end of her self-confidence when they're shoved off to Thailand together for a TV travel story? If such questions also seem pressing to you, this sequel will be fairly painless, but you shouldn't expect anything fresh. Director Beeban Kidron and her screenwriters--all four of them!--are content to sink matters into slapstick, with chunky Zellweger (who's unflatteringly photographed) the literal butt of all jokes. Though the star still has her charms, and some of Bridget's social gaffes are amusing, the film is mired in low comedy--a sequence in a Thai women's prison is more offensive than outrageous--with only Grant's rakish mischief to pull it out of the swamp. --Steve Wiecking ... Read more

Reviews (101)

5-0 out of 5 stars The sequel surpasses the original.
I've seen several movies that were sequels but they were never better than the first movie. But for the first time with this movie I found the second better than the first one. If you have seen "THE DIARY OF BRIDGET JONES", you must see this one and if you haven't seen it. I would recommend you to start with that one so you can follow better the story.
This time the picture starts with a very happy Bridget (Renée Zellweger) who is deeply in love with Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) and that love is mutual. Everything goes perfect until Bridget and Mark have a fight that ends with the relationship because Bridget is jealous of Natasha (Mark's friend who is beautiful and rich) and because Mark is still very arrogant with her. After this appears once again Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant) who is called to work with Bridget. The story goes to several places from this point and you can laugh very much and have a great time with this movie that also has a wonderful soundtrack featuring songs by Joss Stone, Mary J. Blige and Robbie Williams along others.
With the speacial features you can find a hilarious interview from "serious journalist" Bridget Jones and actor Colin Firth and alternativebeginnings, deleted scenes plus others.

2-0 out of 5 stars Hey Hugh, Colin called you a big sissy!
There's really only one reason to see this movie: a recap of the great girly-man fight between Hugh Grant and Colin Firth. It's almost as funny as the first time around, with some great hair-pulling, body-slamming interludes. The rest of the movie left my mind almost at the same time I watching it, except some painful memories of cheesy looking sets and politically correct third-world prisons. Any movie set in Thailand with no filth and squalor goes way beyond comedy to a kind of propagandistic obscenity. Don't be fooled, tourists of the world, "Edge of Reason" is to the real Thailand what Woody Allen films are to the real New York.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fall in Love All Over Again...
Bridget Jones is passionate about passion. She inspires a dreamy admiration for love itself as she longingly gazes at Mark Darcy, wrapped in lavender sheets. Unfortunately (and fortunately for the viewer) Bridget keeps tripping over herself in this sacred dance of love. Her antics are deliciously funny all while her heart reaches for the profound moments in life.

You can't help but fall madly in love with Bridget Jones (Renée Zellweger) because she is a real woman, struggling with all the decisions of daily life and all the insecurities society promotes. In this daily life she also retains the right to vivid fantasies and creative conclusions inspired by jealousy.

Life seems to keep getting in the way of her fantasy existence especially when she is drenched by passing buses. In fact, she spends a great deal of this movie running about in the rain or looking quite deliciously natural with her hair all a mess and very little makeup. She honestly tried, but it is like the elements have ruled in favor of the natural look.

While she obsesses endlessly over her main rival who seems to have her eye on Mark Darcy, she condenses her thoughts into sly little schemes with hilarious results. She has a tendency to put herself in physical danger - falling from airplanes and sliding off skylights into gardens. Her ever-curious nature makes her almost kittenish at times and I thought the humor was shockingly good.

How does Bridget go from being an "award-winning" journalist to being thrown into a Thai prison where she undergoes a hilarious name change? What is even more fun is how she always survives her mother's seasonal curry buffet.

Colin Firth is especially dashing in this movie as he ends up completely drenched in a fountain in his suit. He is at first emotionally withdrawn, but his heart reaches out through his eyes as he longs to be fully trusted and admired. Of course, Bridget can't fully trust him because of Daniel Cleaver's antics and she is just waiting for him to cheat on her and ruin their beautiful relationship.

Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant) is still as naughty as always and his boyish charm and attempts to control his overwhelming appetites encourage our sympathy. I especially loved the scene where he recites the Thai Poem and when he tells Bridget she is the best he has ever had. Of course, current research tells us that women who are slightly overweight are much more interested in sex for very biological reasons.

I've been listening to the soundtrack in hopeful anticipatory mode, knowing the songs would sound perfect in a movie. I was not disappointed. This movie also has a quiz option. You can take the test after various scenes of importance. While the main plot elements from the book are still all in place, there are a few surprises.

In the end, I think this movie is romantic because it appeals to a man's need for respect and a woman's need to be passionately loved for who she is, just the way she is even if her hair is not perfectly done or her makeup perfectly applied. What is more beautiful than a man telling you he loves you, even if you are a few pounds overweight? This is about total acceptance and loving a woman as a soul. It is rather profound from a woman's perspective because society judges us on our weight and not our heart.

It seems Beeban Kidron shares my fascination with water images and I look forward to more movies in the future with rain, rivers and oceans. If you enjoyed this movie, also look for "Swept from the Sea."

~TheRebeccaReview.com

2-0 out of 5 stars Mildly amusing, but ultimately pointless sequel
The first Bridget Jones movie was a perfect little human comedy.Although absurdly unlucky, Bridget remained a consistent and logical (in her own way) centre to the film.The humour grew organically from her "logical" reactions to the absurdity happening around her.And we had a nice, romantic happy ending.The same praise cannot be given to this sequel, "Bridget Jones - The Edge of Reason."Don't get me wrong - I enjoyed the film in a superficial way, at least while I was watching it.Unfortunately, it's entirely unecessary, except as a money-making grab by the studio.

The plot: Mark Darcy is seen in the presence of another woman.Bridget assumes he is cheating on her and is then assigned a job in Thailand with Daniel Cleaver (the "ex").Therein lies the main problem I had with the film: the entire story is built on misunderstandings that could be cleared up with the tiniest application of logic on any one of the characters' parts.Similarly, actions are not driven by the nature of the characters, but rather the requirements of the plot.For example, almost immediately after starting the relationship with Mark Darcy, Bridget's friends are advising her to dump him.Why?I have no idea - I guess because the screenplay told them to!Similarly, if Bridget is thrown in a Thai jail while on assignment for her TV network, wouldn't someone at that network notice that she had gone missing?

Am I applying logic where none is required?Probably.But a sequel should be able to build on the characters rather than making them more two-dimensional (or making their actions arbitrary).I should be asking is the film funny?Are the actors good?The answer to both questions is undeniably "yes!"I applaud the idea of building a comedy around the question, "what happens after happily ever after?" Unfortunately, the film bails and gives us a series of silly little scenes that work on their own, but never add up to anything worthwhile.

On the plus side, Mirimax has deigned to give us at least a few extras on the DVD.There are some deleted scenes, the most welcome being the infamous "Bridget interviews Colin Firth" scene from the novel.Obviously, it became impossible to put this in the movie with Firth playing Mark Darcy, but they filmed it anyway at the end of a day's shooting and stuck it on the DVD as a treat to those who have read the book.There are also some scene breakdowns and a director's commentary.

1-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Experience For Me!
Having sat through the movie with a female friend, I now know that life will only get better, since seeing this movie was the absolute worst two hours of my life. I would rather have stomach cramps for two hours than watch this horrible tripe again.

I am a male - not the intended audience. I believe that the intended audience must be people with dementia. They would be spared the pain of possibly remembering even one second of this unbelievably bad movie. This movie deserves a rating of zero, plus, everyone involved with this film should be sentenced to prison.

Never has there been a more insulting movie passed on as entertainment. I seriously worry about those who enjoyed it.

Rating: negative infinity, the worst movie ever made.
... Read more


153. Reds
Director: Warren Beatty
list price: $14.95
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Asin: 6300214028
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 1023
Average Customer Review: 4.26 out of 5 stars
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Warren Beatty's lengthy 1981 drama about American Communist John Reed and his relationships with both the Russian Revolution and a writer named Louise Bryant (Diane Keaton) is a compelling piece of little-known history told in a uniquely personal way. Beatty plays Reed as he did the title gangster in Bugsy and Senator in Bulworth, as a visionary likely to die before anyone fully recognizes the progressiveness of the vision, including those who are supposed to be on the same page. Jack Nicholson has an interesting part as fellow intellectual Eugene O'Neill, and the late author Jerzy Kosinski--himself a refugee from then-Soviet-controlled Poland--makes a strong impression as Reed's problematic Russian liaison. --Tom Keogh ... Read more

Reviews (35)

5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing Epic
There have been tons of epics in Hollywood- from the biblical epics like The Ten Commandments, the David Lean epics like Dr. Zhivago or the recent self-bloated Hollywood [poor] epics like "We Were Soldiers", "Pearl Harbor" and "Saving Private Ryan". "Reds", which was directed by Warren Beatty, and stars him along with Diane Keaton, Jack Nicholson and Gene Hackman, is perhaps, along with the Lean epics, the greatest one ever made.

The story is of John Reed (Beatty), writer of "Ten Days that Shook the World", and the only American buried in the Kremlin. Even though I am against the "this is a true story" deal some movies pretentiously say, Beatty's film is so intelligently and almost objectively done, that I'll go ahead and ignore that "flaw". (espacially now that it is known that Reed was a massvely paid missionary of the USSR)

Yet one should look at the film itself. This is a beautiful and romantic film. While the movie remains closer to leftism, the film doesn't forget the injustices the Soviets did to Reed. The movie's main plot is the romance story between Beatty and Keaton- in that respect it is similar to Dr. Zhivago.

I don't think I have ever seen more beautiful cinematography in my life- Vittorio Storaro's snow scapes are some of the greatest squares ever filmed. It is real injustice to him that this film is only available in a [poor] pan-scan VHS version.

Yet the true power of the film is Beatty, both as Reed, the idealist who has to choose between love or idealism, and as the director. Despite its length, the film flows breathlessly, intercutting with various real interviews with people who actually knew Reed.

I wholeheartedly recommend this movie- it's one of the great moments of Hollywood. And one of the few.

5-0 out of 5 stars A personal epic
Warren Beatty pulls off a difficult task in "Reds." He's got to juggle several epic stories, including the rise of the American left in the early 20th century, the Russian Revolution, and a personal story of two romantics in a relationship charged by passion both emotional and political.

Any of these story threads presents a difficult task for a filmmaker and Beatty weaves his multilayered tale together with skill. He pays close attention to detail, gives us a multitude of historical characters and events, and mixes his story telling with the words of real people. Beatty buttresses his scenes with deceptively simple "talking heads." These "witnesses" provide a real background to the John Reed/Louise Bryant story of "Reds," giving viewers a good grounding in the passions of the era. The attention to little details (Reed bringing Bryant lilies, the constant phrase "There's a taxi waiting," etc.) provide a rich portrait of two volatile human beings.

Beyond the personal, Beatty knows how to handle epic screen drama. The rousing montage that leads up to the overthrow of Russian government is sumptuous and envigorating. Don't be deceived thought; this is not a "pro-Bolshevik" film by any great stretch of the imagination. Reed's dissillusionment with the Soviet system is portrayed in agonizing detail. Emma Goldman's story, a really great history in and of itself, gives another point of view to the difficulty passionate people have when taking on governing authorities and social mores.

The performances are uniformally excellent. Beatty and Keaton are well matched and there's plenty of gems in the supporting roles. Standouts include Jack Nicholson as Eugene O'Neil, Maureen Stapelton as Emma Goldman, Edward Herrmann as Max Eastman, writer Jerzy Kosinski as Soviet bureaucrat Grigory Zinoviev and Paul Sorvino as Louis Fraina.

I love "Reds." It's one of my favorite films. Be forewarned, however, you could be lost and confused by the myrad of events in this film if you don't know much about political history of the radical left in early 20th Century America or the Bolshevik Revolution and its aftermath. On the other hand, if you're intrigued by the film you'll find yourself up to your eyeballs at the library reading about the true events and real people who inspired this film.

5-0 out of 5 stars One Of The Great Films Of The 20th Century
This is a wonderful film that is really a love story. Yes, it is an epic history of the Russian Revolution but it is one of the best biographies of Jack Reed and other progressives of the early 20th century. My wife and I saw this film in the theater in 1981 and fell in love with it. We watch it at least once a year because of the terrific love story and amazing historic sweep of the film. I love the idealism found in this film. It shows that ideas are important and that each of us should attempt to live out what we really believe in. Someone should release this film on DVD it stands the test of time!

4-0 out of 5 stars USEFUL IDIOTS
EXCERPTED FROM STEVEN TRAVERS' "GOD'S COUNTRY"

The 1920s were a strange time. John Reed's "Ten Days That Shook the World" reached a large audience in the United States and internationally. Many wanted to know why an entire planet could be thrust into war. In an attempt to address that issue, some decided that nationalism, governmental agendas, realpolitik, racism, class warfare, capitalism, Democracy, and corporations in bed with politicians and militarists were to blame.

Nationalism was part of it. German unification and Balkan nationalism played a role. Governmental agendas and realpolitik always have played a role in conflict. Since Communism addressed the concept of "one world government" and a "world without borders," some concluded that Communism offered the answer to these problems.
Racism was never an original part of the war, but would emerge as an ugly by-product. The Turks unleashed an open can of worms resulting in "ethnic cleansing" and genocide pitting Christians against Muslims, Turks against Arabs, secular vs. religious. In Germany, an easy scapegoat began to emerge: The Jews. Lies began to spread that Jewish banking interests profited from the war. In the American South Jewish influence was an affront to their sensibilities. The Ku Klux Klan rose again after a period of dormancy. The KKK's "mandate" pitted them against a "worldwide Jewish conspiracy" somehow in league with Papal domination. They said Catholics pledge allegiance not to the U.S., but to the Vatican. But few Catholics and fewer Jews lived in the South. Many blacks did. They were becoming a more prominent segment of society. Blacks were emerging as professional athletes in the Negro baseball leagues, and as musicians in the jazz world. As they asserted themselves, this infuriated the white underclass.
But the most pernicious thing that emerged out of World War I were Westerners who believed that the war had occurred because of the failure of capitalism, Democracy, and corporations who were in bed with politicians and militarists. When Reed's book came out, a segment of society allowed themselves to believe that the new political system in Russia should be given a chance. Communism became "the answer" to society's many problems, including racism and poverty. The failure of Communism, already evident by 1920, was not exposed to the world. Reed either chose not to write about the thousands and thousands of famine victims, the secret police, the crackdowns and forced marches, the banishments, assassinations and disappearances, or he was controlled by the hierarchy, and not allowed to see it. He probably did not want to see it. He had found his story and he was going to stick to it. The great failure of the free press, of governments and political figures, of humanists and truth-seekers, was the failure to pin Russia - Lenin, Stalin, Trotsky, and the rest of them - down before they became too powerful. To expose them for what they were.

STEVEN TRAVERS
AUTHOR OF "BARRY BONDS: BASEBALL'S SUPERMAN"
...

5-0 out of 5 stars Beatty's masterpiece
Warren Beatty's magnificent film, winner of many awards in many areas, deserves a DVD. Beatty, Keaton, Nicholson, Stapleton, etc., have never been better. Oscar winning cinematography deserves a good widescreen. Anyone else out there who thinks a DVD is long overdue? ... Read more


154. Butterflies Are Free
Director: Milton Katselas
list price: $9.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 6302869919
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 19272
Average Customer Review: 4.21 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (14)

4-0 out of 5 stars ...not all butterflies are free...
Not a bad love story if one doesnt take it too seriously.We tend to forget that Goldie Hawn used to act in some very good movies at one time.She manages to shine in this charming but unoriginal romance between a flower child and a handsome young blind man played by Edward Albert,seeking independence from his over protective mother.The story is set in the Haight-Ashbury area of San Francisco during the early seventies prior to Watergate and gay rights and the onslaught of AIDS.

Eileen Heckart gives a memorable and touching performance as the mother and well deserved her best-supporting-actress oscar that year.There is a wonderful scene where Goldie first meets Donnys mother in his apartment in the most inappropriate of circumstances.In her underwear!Enough said. Not exactly Shakespeare but it will keep your interest,and besides theres a happy ending...

5-0 out of 5 stars Heart warming and funny
This is one of the best movies I have ever seen, and I saw it for the first time yesterday on HBO. Goldie Hawn is hillarious in this movie, and the story is beautiful. If you like Goldie Hawn, and if you like a good, real love story, you will LOVE this movie.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very pleasant though a bit too stagey
There are two things that made me really enjoy seeing this film again for the first time in years. One is Goldie Hawn. She was both terminally cute and utterly adorable in this. The past few years I had mainly seen her in films from the past decade or so, and while she has remained extremely attractive, I didn't remember her in her twenties well enough to realize just how much she and her daughter Kate Hudson resemble one another at the same age (or nearly, since Goldie was 27 when she made this, and Kate is not yet that old). Kate Hudson is a chip off the old block if ever there was one. Goldie Hawn has had a fine career, but I always thought it should have been better than it was. She was a truly gifted comedienne, and one of the cutest women to ever walk the earth. Perhaps her sixties connection with LAUGH IN kept people from taking her seriously for many years, but she definitely should have been in more major projects. Even if everything in this film were bad, just being able to gaze at her extraordinary smile and riveting blue eyes would be enough.

A second thing that makes this film click is the remarkable Eileen Heckart. One of the premiere stage actors of her generation, the husky voiced, long-faced Heckart simply never found her place in the movies. While she managed a great stage career, many of us didn't have the privilege of living in New York so as to see her perform. One advantage of the movies is the ability for talented performers to display their talents in every godforsaken corner of the glove. Heckart is stellar as Don's overprotective mother, and it is an utter joy to hear her squeeze out a put down or insult. She won a well-deserved Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in this one.

I am not overly fond of the rest of the film. The problem is that this isn't really a movie: it is a play captured on celluloid. Some film versions of plays manage to transcend the source to make an exciting film. A classic example is TWELVE ANGRY MEN, which takes twelve jurors and locks them in a single room for nearly two hours. But it makes a great film because the camera is so magnificently active, moving agilely from close up to group shot to isolating a couple of figures. The camera in BUTTERFLIES ARE FREE is, however, static and passive. It merely stands in front of each scene and lazily absorbs the action. It doesn't get close and explore what it happening. In other words, the camera isn't an important part of the telling of the story. As a result, it never becomes more than what it was onstage. I also am not fond of Edward Albert Jr., but that is a strictly personal reaction, and not an objective criticism of the film. My final problem with the film is that sometimes, because it is merely a filmed play, it sometimes gets a tad dull in the dialogue. Some of the talk is [not good]. For instance, the scene that takes place the morning after Jill and Don sleep together, before Don's mother shows up, is quite dull. I almost wondered if the reason Goldie Hawn spent the entire scene in her underwear wasn't to make up for the dullness of what the two of them were saying.

So, not a masterpiece, but definitely worth seeing for catching the young Goldie Hawn and for the magnificent Eileen Heckart.

5-0 out of 5 stars An understated, but beautiful score.
This movie had very little music score, which worked well with the Broadway Play adaptation. Yet the few music moments were charming as well as beautifully written. It might be noted that the opening song was nominated for a Golden Globe Award. That, along with the 'Picnic On the Floor' music and several others, were delightful, overlooked segments, which happens more than often to the Hollywood film music people.

4-0 out of 5 stars "Might I Have Seen You in Something Besides Your Underwear?"
The movie "Butterflies are Free" is a comedy/drama which is an old favorite of mine that I have seen in various forms on TV and video for a number of years.I am very happy now that it has finally been put out on DVD.This is basically a filmed play (with a couple of added scenes to "open it up")which explores the meaning of concepts like freedom and independence within the framework of a love story.The story takes place in a San Fransisco loft during those heady, 'groovy' days of flower power.Don Baker (Played by Edward Albert) is young man, blind from birth, who is trying for the first time to break away from his overbearing mother's apron strings by living on his own.One day he meets his new neighbor, Jill, a young, commitment free hippie and wanna-be actress.At first she is freaked out by Don's blindness, but soon they are "getting it on" and she spends the night.The next morning their little private, three room Eden is invaded, when Don's mother barges in unannounced, with the intention of taking her son home.It is within this scenerio that the three characters shout, argue and pontificate about such concepts as 'freedom', 'independence', 'commitment','love' and finally 'letting go'.They all learn a little bit about themselves and the changes they must make to get on with their lives.This is really a wonderful, funny movie that has a lot of heart. The three lead actors do a simply amazing job with their roles.Goldie Hawn is in all her giggly, post "Laugh-In" splendor.Underneath the bubbly persona she shows us a character, who is emotionally crippled and must learn not to be frightened of being loved.Edward Albert does a fine job as the blind, young man who is fighting for his independence.But the real scene stealer is Eileen Heckart (who won a Best Supporting Actress Oscar for this role)who is brilliantly funny as an overbearing, cynical, mother,who obviously loves her son, but must find a way to let go. The script by Lenord Gershe is very fast and funny featuring hilarious exchanges between Albert, Hawn and Heckart's characters. It is filled with lots of one liners that remind me a bit of the comic style of playright, Neil Simon and his comedies such as "The Odd Couple" and "The Sunshine Boys".Some of the hippie, flower power references and language in the movie are a bit dated, but I think it adds a touch of charm and quaintness to the script.Milton Katselas's direction of this film is a little stagey, but it does not detract as the story progresses.The DVD presentation is very clear and the sound quality is not bad for a film from 1972.My only real complaint is that the DVD features bonus trailers, but not for this movie (at least two out of three of them are for old Goldie Hawn films).For an evening of funny, yet thought provoking entertainment I highly recommend this film. ... Read more


155. Field of Dreams
Director: Phil Alden Robinson
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Average Customer Review: 4.61 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential video

A phenomenal hit when it was released in 1989, Field of Dreams has become a modern classic and a uniquely American slice of cinema. It functions effectively as a moving drama about the power of dreams, a fantasy ode to our national pastime, and a brilliant adaptation of W.P.Kinsella's exquisite baseball novel Shoeless Joe. Kinsella himself found the film a delightful surprise, differing greatly from his novel but benefiting from its own creative variations. It is the film that cemented Kevin Costner's status as an all-American screen star, but the story resonates far beyond Costner's handsome appeal. As just about everyone knows by now, Costner stars as Iowa farmer Ray Kinsella, who hears the mysterious words "If you build it, he will come," and is compelled to build a baseball diamond in the middle of his cornfield. His wife (Amy Madigan) supports the wild idea, but a reclusive novelist (modeled after J.D. Salinger and played by James Earl Jones) is not so easily persuaded. The idealistic farmer is either a visionary or a deluded fool, but his persistence is rewarded when spirits from baseball's past begin appearing on the ball field. Past and present intermingle in the person of "Moonlight Graham" (superbly played by Burt Lancaster), an unknown player who sacrificed his dreams of baseball glory for a dignified life as a small-town physician ... but what all of this means is unclear until the film's memorably heartfelt conclusion. A meditation on family, memory, and faith, the film balances humor and magic to strike just the right chord of thoughtful emotion, affecting audiences so deeply that the baseball field created for the production has now become a mecca of sorts for dreamers around the world. --Jeff Shannon ... Read more

Reviews (149)

5-0 out of 5 stars One of Costner's Best Movies
This ranks as one of my favorite movies of all time. You don't have to be a baseball fan to appreciate the nostalgia and warm heartedness this movie brings to the big screen - well little screen in the case of the DVD. It's part ghost story, part fantasy, part nostalgia. It's also about redemption and the fulfillment of dreams.

The story begins when Ray Kinsella, a reluctant Iowa farmer, although he won't admit he's reluctant, starts hearing a voice telling him "build it and he will come." Ray dreams, ponders and finally plows under many acres of his crop to build a baseball field on his farm, against all rational logic. And the magic begins. This magic takes Ray on a strange quest in search of a '60s radical holed up in a New York City apartment writing children's books played by James Earl Jones - to tell why would spoil the movie. But suffice it to say Jones ends up with one of the most memorable "speeches" in the movie about the nostalgia of baseball.

It's hard to really do justice to the plot without spoiling the movie but it will at times give you chills and in the end is very uplifting.

5-0 out of 5 stars Grand Slam
On the surface, Field Of Dreams, seems like it belongs as an epidsode of The Twilight Zone. The cynic in me takes it one step further, and says, "there's no way I can buy into this sentimental hockum". As I watched the film for the first time, all of those concerns melted away, leaving me with a sense of wonder...normally reserved for children

Iowa farmer Ray Kinsella (Kevin Costner) is inspired by a voice he can't ignore that will take him on a journey that will change his life forever. Supported by his wife Annie (Amy Madigan), Ray begins his special quest by turning a portion of his cornfields into a baseball diamond. Along the way he meets reclusive activist Terence Mann (James Earl Jones), the mysterious 'Doc' Graham (Burt Lancaster) and even the legendary 'Shoeless Joe' Jackson (Ray Liotta).

Adapted from W.P. Kinsella's novel "Shoeless Joe", director Phil Alden Robinson, has created a fine tribute to the sport of Baseball, the fans who love the game, and more importantly, it's a metaphor about father's and sons everywhere. Aside from a handfull of films, I don't really think of Kevin Costner, as a good actor. As Ray though, he gives one of the best perfomances of his career, ideally capturing the sense of wonder I talked about earlier. Of course it doesn't hurt that James Earl Jones and Burt Lancaster are there to back you up. Both men add so much to the film, giving a sense of realism and warmth, that may have seemed artificial had lesser actors been cast. As Joe Jackson, Liotta is very effective and I had forgotten just how good he can be in a non gangster/bad guy role. For more on the life of Joe Jackson and the World Series scandal that rocked the sport, be sure to watch Eight Men Out, another winner. Field Of Dreams also boasts one of composer James Hornor's best scores.

I don't really know why I never picked up the Collector's Edition of the DVD. But after watching the Anniversary Edition 2 disc set, all I can say is, I'm glad I waited. The remastered picture and 5.1 sound very clean transfers and work well on either my TV, or, my speaker enhanced PC. The audio commentary with Robinson and the film's director of photography John Lindley is very good. Both men are well spoken, never dull, and clearly respected the source material In keeping with the father/son themes I spoke of, I especially enjoyed "...Passing Along the Pastime" - memories of father and son baseball as recounted by the director, star, and major league baseball players. The newly discovered deleted scenes are mostly throwaway stuff that was wisely cut. I was surprised to learn while watching "The Diamond in the Husks", that the baseball set made for the film still exists, and attracts tourists every year. We also get to visit the Minnesota home town of Moonlight Doc Graham. "A Look Inside Field of Dreams is a new 90-minute documentary on the film and its lasting appeal. Also included is a 48 minute segment of the Bravo channel series "From Page to Screen" on the movie. The "Field of Dreams Roundtable", with Costner and former baseball players, including Bret Saberhagen talk about the state of the game and the film. Trivia buffs will really like the topper to the set, fun facts about America's stadiums.

Field Of Dreams is not your typical "sports" movie. Indeed, it's much more than that...Even though, I never had the chance as kid to pitch baseballs with my dad, the movie allows me to dream that I can...

1-0 out of 5 stars Sentimental nonsense
Sports fans tend to be both nostalgiac and sentimental and sports movies tend to fall into the same trap. This movie is a perfect example of why sports, and especially baseball, rarely makes for great cinematic subject matter. Corny, predictable and manipulative- perhaps baseball fans might enjoy it, but I can't imagine anyone else sitting through it.

5-0 out of 5 stars It was you. -- No, it was YOU.
When I attended the Writers' Workshop at the University of Iowa, we were given one rule: "Never write about Christmas, the circus or baseball." The reasoning was that these three topics were just too ingrained in the American psyche, they were too iconic, and that they had been used too often. Well, I'm glad that Ray Kinsella (author of the book "Field of Dreams") and screenwriter Phil Alden Robinson didn't attend the Iowa Writers' Workshop.

FIELD OF DREAMS is a marvelous examination of America's infatuation with baseball and a moving exploration of family loyalties. Ray (as sensitively played by Kevin Costner) has a loving wife (Amy Madigan, making it look so easy) and a doting daughter, but something is missing. A voice tells him that he must build a baseball field in his corn crop (in Iowa!). When he does, the apparition of Shoeless Joe Jackson (Ray Liotta) shows up to play. What follows is a series of baseball adventures on and off Ray's baseball diamond, as well as in and out of the present day. Eventually, it becomes apparent that what was missing in Ray's life can only be addressed through baseball, and through a cultural icon from his past, played by the ubiquitous James Earl Jones.

When everything is resolved, there's a bit of throwaway dialogue that, in reality, is very moving. "It was you," Ray tells Shoeless Joe Jackson in reference to the voice he'd heard early in the film. "No, it was YOU," Jackson replies, indicating that
Ray's conscience prompted the entire adventure. Don't let anyone tell you that FIELD OF DREAMS is just a baseball movie. That would be like someone telling you that baseball is just a game.

5-0 out of 5 stars 1989 Classic And Kevin Costner's Best Film
On DVD, the movie is loaded with extra features including commentary, interviews, trailer, etc. This was on Channel 7 last week. Kevin Costner stars as a suburban family man who is hearing voices. "If you built it they will come". The voices keep changing their messages and lead him in pursuit of the gathering of baseball legends who have passed away. The goal is to establish a "field of dreams" a baseball park with old pros playing and a magic working on its audience. And it did for many people when this movie was released in 1989. Too many, it was a movie about hope, following your dreams and persistence. Kevin Costner is doing a terrific performance and is perhaps doing his greatest role. He was merely a romantic lead in the early 90's "The Bodyguard" with Whitney Houston and he was not as committed in "Dances With Wolves" which though the right kind of movie for him was not as interesting enough a character as he is in this movie. Other than this movie, his only fine role was in J.F.K. In this film, he plays a dedicated and persistent dreamer who discovers that indeed dreams come true if you hold fast. A great job by all the actors, including James Earl Jones (the voice of Darth Vader in Star Wars) as the hermit and elusive author Terrence Mann, who wrote books in the 60's advocating love and peace. He is supposedly modeled after J.D. Salinger. The chemistry between James Earl Jones and Kevin Costner, especially in the scene in which Costner attempts to pursuade him to join him to a baseball game is exceptional. Magical and unexpected things start to happen as the voices carry him onward through his mission, including a trip back in time to 1972. Bring the magic home in this remarkable DVD. It's as much an adult's movie as it is for the whole family. It's almost a Disney film. Five stars. ... Read more


156. Hopscotch
Director: Ronald Neame
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Sales Rank: 11018
Average Customer Review: 4.79 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (116)

4-0 out of 5 stars I love this movie!
Miles Kendig (played Walter Matthau) is a CIA agent who is used to doing things his way. When his new chief, the abusive and bombastic G.P. Myerson (Ned Beatty), decides to retire him behind a desk, Kendig decides that the CIA needs a house cleaning--and that his memoirs would make the perfect broom. Now Kendig is on the run from the Agency: sending out new chapters, playing hide-and-seek with old associates. It's all a game, a game of hopscotch, and Kendig needs to keep one step ahead. Will he succeed? [Color, released in 1980, with a running time of 1 hour, 44 minutes.]

I have loved this movie since it came out in 1980! It is just the perfect mix of adventure and humor. Humorous, but not a comedy movie--it's an adventure story with a sense of humor. And now for the bad news: to make his character more dislikable, Ned Beatty swears incessantly in this movie, which makes it a little much to watch in front of small children (I have two). That said, though, I do not know why this movie deserved its R rating. There is no nudity, and practically no violence. And I must add, the swearing is not too much for adult viewers; I have yet to meet anyone who doesn't break into uproarious laughter when Myerson angrily gives his opinion of what FBI stands for!

5-0 out of 5 stars Smart, Stylish Comedy
We saw this movie back in the early 1980's and loved it, but by the time we tried to get a copy, it had gone out of print. Many thanks to Criterion for releasing it on DVD! This film is superb, well-written and directed, with a cast of very gifted performers. The actors play their roles to the hilt and have a terrific chemistry onscreen.

The plot is basic revenge, perpetrated on the CIA by one of its top operatives. Walter Matthau plays the amiable Kendig, a man who's served in the field for decades and is an excellent agent. He's smart yet still down-to-earth; his reputation among the underworld of spydom is the stuff of legends. Kendig is respected even by his enemies for his savvy decisions and sense of fair play, and his reluctance to resort to dirty tricks. His new boss, Meyerson (Ned Beatty) resents his underling's popularity and decides to neutralize Kendig's effectiveness by yanking him from the field and assigning him to a desk job as a file clerk.

To say that Kendig despises his new boss would be a gross understatement. A switched file is shredded and Kendig vanishes, fleeing to Austria and his lover Isobel (Glenda Jackson). From there, he nurses his wounds and launches on his vengeance against Meyerson and the CIA by writing a book that reveals the agency's dirty tricks and botched missions. Meyerson is livid and assigns Joe Cutter (Sam Waterston) to put a stop to Kendig by any means necessary, especially assassination. Cutter admires Kendig and is torn by his personal feelings for the man and his desire to serve his country.

The story then twists and turns as Kendig leads his former employers on a huge wild goose chase. He calls them from a phone booth right near the CIA headquarters, hides out in Meyerson's southern house---which is later demolished by the feds themselves---, and feeds chapters of the book to Meyerson to whip him into a frenzy of ineffectual rage. He plans on getting the entire book to a publisher, and his means for doing so and ensuring his own protection from future assassination attempts are ingenious.

We are very happy that this movie was released to the public once again. Matthau is superb as a real man working in an unreal world of espionage. Herbert Lom is great for the role of his KGB counterpart, and Glenda Jackson is both tart and elegant as the enigmatic Isobel, who frankly adores Kendig. Ned Beatty plays the part of the oafish Meyerson to perfection, making the viewer hate him thoroughly. Waterston is in excellent form as the good-hearted and conflicted Cutter, and shows hints of his mildly acerbic wit that would come to fruition in his later role of McCoy. The supporting players are fine, too, and the plot is well-crafted and believable.

The DVD is nicely done. There aren't many extras, but it's beautifully produced and does have a nice feature: an alternate soundtrack that deletes the foul language, so even kids can watch it with their parents. We are pleased with our investment, and highly recommend "Hopscotch" to anyone who enjoys a well-done and stylish comedy. It's also perfect for fans of Walter Matthau!

5-0 out of 5 stars He's about to expose the CIA, the FBI, the KGB...and himself
Off the top of your head, how many funny spy films can you think of? The James Colburn 'Flint' films of the 60's? The Austin Powers movies perhaps? Or that incredibly lame Leslie Nielsen film...Spy Hard (1996)? Over-the-top silliness seems to be a common theme in these films, but Hopscotch (1980), based on a book written by Brian Garfield, also a comedy involving spies, manages to rise above, avoiding the slapsticky and crude humor, rather providing a charming and intelligent story that entertains throughout. Directed by Ronald Neame (Prudence and the Pill, The Poseidon Adventure, The Odessa File), the film stars a wonderful and accomplished cast of actors including Walter Matthau, Glenda Jackson, Sam Waterston, Herbert Lom, and Ned Beatty.

Matthau plays Miles Kendig, one of the CIA's top field agents who suddenly finds himself relegated to a desk job after control of the department he works for is taken over by a petty, vindictive, and less than capable man named Myerson (Beatty) who seems to harbor a personal grudge against Kendig. Unable to deal with riding his career out behind a desk, Kendig leaves the agency, and, after much thought, decides to write his memoirs, detailing all kinds of juicy, sensitive stuff about not only his own agency, but also intelligence agencies throughout the world. After being in the biz for thirty years, he certainly has the inside scoop on all kinds of things, causing his former boss to put out the order for his termination, elimination, liquidation, extermination, what have you...with the aid of a wealthy widow and love interest named Isobel who was also once in the game, played by Jackson, Kendig begins leading his former colleagues on a chase that spans halfway around the globe, always managing to stay one or two steps ahead. Will he be able to finish his book before his old agency or that of a foreign power catches up to him? Even if he does, will he live to see his work published?

Hopscotch is a wonderfully witty, light comedy with a dash of sophistication that nearly everyone can enjoy. Matthau plays his role so perfectly that after seeing the film, you could imagine no one else in the part. He's certainly got that whole irascible charm thing down, and it fits with the character very well here. I loved how his character never seemed to lose his calm composure, constantly outwitting and outsmarting his former co-workers in leisure like fashion, given that he probably wrote the book and trained half the men now chasing him. The element of Kendig using the notion of a book for revenge at first, but then once removed from the work he participated in for so long and seeing just how nasty it is from an outside perspective decides to follow through with his initial threat of finishing the book and getting it published. Jackson plays so very well off Matthau, and they create a level of chemistry that's pretty rare, in my opinion, between on screen couples. They just seem to fit so naturally together, creating a level of believability to counteract the somewhat unrealistic element that the CIA are a mostly a bunch of bumbling buffoons. Did anyone else think her hair was a bit too short, giving her the appearance of a young boy? Maybe it was just me... I really enjoyed a young looking Waterston (Law and Order) as Cutter, Kendig's competent and intelligent protégé now responsible for finding and eliminating his former mentor. I read that he'd actually come into shooting late due to the film he was working on prior, Heaven's Gate (1980) ran past its' shooting schedule, and is the reason why Waterston looks so very tired in some of the scenes in Hopscotch. Herbert Lom is also very good as a Soviet agent named Yaskov, one "who's seen Casablanca one too many times", although I felt he deserved a bit more screen time. Ned (Squeal like a pig for me, boy) Beatty is a riot as Myerson, constantly exasperated by his group's futile attempts to put a lid on the loose cannon he himself let loose due to his own petty dislikes for Kendig. Imagine someone you work with that no one likes, and then that person finally getting a little bit of power, lording over certain individuals, power tripping here and there, but mostly tripping over his own feet, and you basically have Myerson. The direction by Neame was most excellent, keeping the viewer (me) engaged throughout, with a smooth, steady pace as the story unfolded, which is a bit light in some parts, but did nothing to reduce my enjoyment of this charming, funny film.

Criterion provides a superior high-definition digital transfer here in wide screen format and a cleaned up soundtrack. The quality of the picture is really fabulous, especially when compared to my old VHS copy. As far as special features are concerned, there's not as much as I would have thought from a Criterion release, but what's here is very worthy. There's liner notes on the insert inside the DVD case by Bruce Eder, a video introduction by writer Brian Garfield and director Roland Neame along with interviews, a separate audio track, a clean version created for television broadcast along with the original version (there's very little profanity in the film, but what this is comes from Ned Beatty's character Myerson) and an original theatrical trailer along with a teaser trailer for the film. If you're looking for a smartly funny engaging comedy that only gets better after repeated viewings, then Hopscotch is for you.

Cookieman108

1-0 out of 5 stars Ughhh! What a Waste of Major Talents!
Rarely have such major talents (Matthau, Jackson and Beatty) been wasted in a film.

Matthau plays a CIA station chief who is called back to Washington when - against CIA instructions - he allows the KGB's top agent to go free after catching him dead to rights in an espionage sting.

How does Kendig (Matthau's character) deal with being "taken out of the game"? Against CIA policy, he proceeds to sell out U.S. national security interests by writing a best-selling expose of CIA covert operations. Ha, Ha! Real funny! What a laugh riot! The entire movie is standard liberal Hollywood fare - the CIA is stupid, the FBI is stupid, the iconoclast is irrascible and superior (he must be, he loves opera), yada, yada, yada.

And what, do you ask, is Kendig's stated motive in disclosing U.S. secrets in a best-selling book? To expose CIA wrong-doing? Uh, no. Is it to expose a rogue agent in the upper reaches of the CIA? No, not that either. To quote the film, it's payback because his boss "emasculated" him. I do not kid. That's what he says. Wow! What a riot! Get back at your boss by selling out your country!

I was in the last PATH train to be diverted from the World Trade Center PATH stop and watched the buildings go down - not on TV. I have subscriptions to the Metropolitan Opera and the City Opera. I DID NOT FIND THE PREMISE OF THIS FILM THE LEAST BIT FUNNY.

5-0 out of 5 stars "Hopscotch"..."Good Title"
was suprised to see criterion release hopscotch, but glad they did. here matthau is repremanded for allowing a wanted KGB agent to walk. matthau's integrity is too precious to take guff from even the CIA. subsequently, he does not take the news of being reassigned to the job of file clerk very well so he begins to write his memoires, leaking secret information to the opposition. the ensuing chase is slapstick, a spy vs. spy comedy with great international locations. frankly, using the cold war as a catalyst for comedy was long overdue by 1980. ... Read more


157. A Civil Action
Director: Steven Zaillian
list price: $9.99
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Asin: 6305426694
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 9406
Average Customer Review: 3.78 out of 5 stars
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Description

Jan Schlichtmann is a cynical, high-priced personal injury attorney who only takes big-money cases he can safely settle out of court. Though his latest case at first appears straightforward, Schlichtmann soon becomes entangled in an epic legal battle ... one where he's willing to put his career, reputation, and all that he owns on the line for the rights of his clients! Also featuring Robert Duvall, William H. Macy, and John Lithgow -- this gripping, widely acclaimed hit delivers edge-of-your-seat entertainment! ... Read more

Reviews (58)

5-0 out of 5 stars Riveting and Powerful Cinema - An Eye-Opener for All
This is the most incredible movie ever made about trying a wrongful death case and the accompanying emotional roller coaster the process generates for attorneys. The opening scene will plant you firmly in your chair as Jan Schlichtmann (played by John Travolta) explains the financial calculus behind accepting and declining potential clients with personal injury claims. Jerome Facher (played by Robert Duvall) is infuriating with his unending legal maneuverings designed to extract his corporate client from an untenable legal position permeated with liability. The traitorous conduct of Schlichtmann's partners will make you wretch with disgust as they scramble to save themselves at the expense of righting a terrible wrong evidenced by a dozen dead children. Engrossing, to say the least.

Yes, the movie isn't perfect. Travolta's portrayal of Jan Schlichtmann doesn't completely mesh with the character in the book, there isn't a practicing attorney alive who doesn't know Rule 11 (court-imposed sanctions for unethical conduct), and the legal proceedings aren't quite right. Who cares? If the director had included the day-to-day minutiae involved in getting a case to trial, the film would have been three years long! My fellow reviewers are unreasonable in their unrelenting critiques.

If you're involved in the legal profession, this film will make you step back and reassess your brand of client representation. Are you taking the right cases? Are you serving the needs of you clients - or yourself? Are you willing to give your all to the law? Interesting, and always stimulating, food for thought.

If you're a lay person, hold on - you're in for the ride of your life.

4-0 out of 5 stars Well-adapted story with terrific acting
After recently reading Jonathan Harr's book A Civil Action, I eagerly awaited seeing the movie version of this sad and absorbing story. The film version condenses the story and leaves out several interesting portions of the book, but is fine nevertheless. John Travolta is a perfect choice to play Jan Schlichtmann, the egotistical, free-spending attorney who dives headfirst into a damages case against the corporate giants Beatrice and W.R. Grace, who are accused of poisoning the drinking water of Woburn, Massachusetts and causing a leukemia outbreak. William H. Macy, Tony Shalhoub, and Zeljko Ivanek co-star as Schlichtmann's partners in the firm, and one only wishes that they would have protested his actions, which led to the financial ruin of him and his firm.

Robert Duvall gives another terrific performance as Jerome Facher, Beatrice's attorney, who is the complete opposite of Schlichtmann. In a scene at a fancy hotel conference room, the frugal Facher is not impressed by any of the lawyers or their arguments, but the free pen that he can take home. It's a subtly funny scene that illustrates Facher perfectly. John Lithgow does a terrific job as Judge Walter Skinner, who Schlichtmann believes is siding with the enemy.

A Civil Action is a story where the winners and losers are unclear, and it must have been difficult for writer-director Steven Zaillian to condense Harr's technical-laden novel. The result is a solid drama with powerhouse acting. Highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars Intelligent and Compelling Courtroom Drama
Jan Schlichtmann (Travolta) is a Boston tort lawyer and something of an ambulance chaser who is initially reluctant to take on an industrial pollution case involving some children dead of leukaemia in rural New England. He changes his mind when he realizes the likely defendants are a couple of big companies with particularly deep pockets and smells the possibility of serious money. Over time, however his interest in the case becomes a moral obsession. The cynical becomes a crusader, refusing offers to settle as his company's finances spiral downwards towards bankruptcy.

If you like courtroom dramas, this is highly recommended. It's one of the best specimens of the genre to come out of America since 'The Verdict'. It's interesting to compare it to 'Erin Brockovich' released a couple of years later. EB is about how a heroic small timer takes on the big boys of corporate America and how her pluck and determination triumphs over all obstacles, something of a legal feelgood movie in other words. Which this, to its great credit, is not. Its central character, for starters, is far more amibivalently likeable: initially just out for a fast buck, moral seriousness has to creep up on him and take him by surprise (perhaps reminding writer/director Zaillian of Oskar Schindler whose story he scripted for Spielberg a few years earlier) and the story's development paints a significantly more ambivalent picture of what pluck and determination can accomplish. It's a highpoint of Travolta's acting career even if he is comprehensively upstaged by Robert Duvall, on brilliant form as his quietly cynical adversary, bigshot lawyer Jerome Facher who knows far better than to look for the truth in a courtroom...

2-0 out of 5 stars The book is SO MUCH BETTER
The movie is fine... but the book is an amazing read. There is so much detail and nuance lost in the adaption to a visual medium.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Civil Travolta
This is a really good film that didn't get near the attention it should have. A great story, a terrific premise and plot. And Travolta nails his performance as a man faced with the dilemna of doing the "right thing" at great personal expense, or walking away with what he has left. This is a morality play of sorts and Travolta is the conscience of us all. We're thrilled when he triumphs; we breathe a sigh of relief and unclench our fists. Yet, we probably wouldn't have blamed him if he had walked. A nice film. ... Read more


158. Circus World
Director: Henry Hathaway
list price: $29.99
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Asin: 6301959949
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Sales Rank: 15088
Average Customer Review: 4.67 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Another Blockbuster Production from Samuel Bronston
Samuel Bronston producer of epic productions such as "El Cid" and "55 Days at Peking" turns to the circus for his setting of "Circus World." John Wayne plays Matt Masters who brings his exciting Wild West show to three rings under the Big Top across Europe. Veteran director Henry Hathaway applies his reputation for atmosphere and characterizations to make this more than just another formula movie. Dimitri Tiomkin's score lends just the right touch of melancholy often associated the circus. The ship disaster and the climatic fire sequences are truly spectacular. The film also features Rita Hayworth, Claudia Cardinale, Lloyd Nolan, John Smith and Richard Conte. This was originally filmed in single lens Cinerama Super Technirama 70.

5-0 out of 5 stars I really loved it !!!
I remember seeing circus world when I was a kid! I really enjoyed seeing it again. John Wayne is one of my all time favorites. He played in alot of westerns and military movies, it was great to see him play in something different. If you have kids it's a great circus movie to show them and they will remember it like I did. I highly recommend this movie to all ages.

4-0 out of 5 stars Hmm....Not quite what I was expecting
I watched this movie a couple of days ago, and I was really very surprised. I LOVE John Wayne's movies, and have seen around 90 of them. (The number is steadily increasing!) *Circus World* was a good movie, but I didn't think it was quite as impressive as the rest of Duke's movies, especially his later ones. The filming quality seemed a bit poor, and the storyline wasn't the best. Don't get me wrong, I think this movie's a great one-timer! Just not my favorite. Watch it, enjoy it, and see if you agree! ... Read more


159. Forrest Gump
Director: Robert Zemeckis
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Asin: 6303402348
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 604
Average Customer Review: 4.23 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential video

The Academy Award winner for Best Picture, Best Director Robert Zemeckis, and Best Actor Tom Hanks, this unlikely story of a slow-witted but good-hearted man somehow at the center of the pivotal events of the 20th century is a funny and heartwarming epic. Hanks plays the title character, a shy Southern boy in love with his childhood best friend (Robin Wright) who finds that his ability to run fast takes him places. As an All-Star football player he meets John F. Kennedy; as a soldier in Vietnam he's a war hero; and as a world champion Ping-Pong player he's hailed by Richard Nixon. Becoming a successful shrimp-boat captain, he still yearns for the love of his life, who takes a quite different and much sadder path in life. The visual effects incorporating Hanks into existing newsreel footage is both funny and impressive, but the heart of the film lies in its sweet love story and in the triumphant performance of Hanks as an unassuming soul who savors the most from his life and times. --Robert Lane ... Read more

Reviews (484)

5-0 out of 5 stars The best movie of the 1990s
Forrest Gump guarantees to be one of the greatest movies you ever see.
Forrest is a simple man who lives by his beliefs, and lives by his mother's advice. He talks of his incredible life while sitting at a bus stop in Alabama, of teaching Elvis new dance moves, of bceoming a war hero in Vietnam, and of meeting several Presidents. At the same time, he recollects about his childhood sweetheart Jenny, who is living a horrible life after being abused as a child.
This is a truly inspirational movie, one of humour and light-hearted fun, while looking back at some of America's biggest moments.
Tom Hanks richly deserved Best Actor, as did the film deserve Best Picture, and Forrest Gump is one of the least-challenged Academy Award decisions in recent memory. This film really can say that it will make you laugh and cry, as well as thoroughly enjoying the best movie of its decade.
Forrest Gump is a must have movie, and is one to watch many times!

5-0 out of 5 stars A Powerful Story Of Love And Adventure
FORREST GUMP is a movie about a backward young boy who grows up to lead a remarkable life while managing to get involved in some of the most important world events of the Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon years. The film is a powerful story of love and adventure-especially love.

Tom Hanks is superb as Forrest Gump. The strong supporting cast includes Robin Wright, Sally Field, Gary Sinise, Mykelti Williamson and a very young Haley Joel Osment.

FORREST GUMP won Oscars for Best Picture, Director (Robert Zemeckis), Actor (Tom Hanks), Adopted Screenplay, Art Direction, Film Editing and Visual Effects. It also received nominations for Best Supporting Actor (Gary Sinise), Cinematography, Sound, Sound Effects Editing, Make-up and Original Score.

Robert Zemeckis will be remembered in addition for his direction of BACK TO THE FUTURE and ROMANCING THE STONE.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best
Tom Hanks at his best. A very intelligent comedy and one of the best reviews of 20th century America in a very light hearted way. Fully deservant of the shower of Oscars it received. Must have!

5-0 out of 5 stars THE BEST FILM EVER MADE
The first time I saw this film, I was amazed beyond beleife. Tom Hanks is outstanding as Forest Gump, and every sapporting actor was perfect for the role. This movie has so many memorable lines in it, its almost insane. This movie is almost a modern day Rocky, in which it shows what one man could do with his life, and what we should do with our lives. Easily deserved every reward it got.

5-0 out of 5 stars the best family film ever
a special guy sits on a bench and tells anyone who will listen about his story book adventure style life.it stars tom hanks.he is abselutely hilarious while simaltaneously being simple and blissfully unaware.the kids can watch it but they should really not look when jennys around.shes a whore and a half.it is easily the best tom hanks movie ever made.this movie is for everybody.if you do not like this movie you need help because something is seriously wrong with you.it is a very emotional movie from watchimg gump struggle to walk as a child up to when his loved ones began dying.if you are the sensitive type,do not forget to take your prozac or youll ball your eyes out.the only chick in it is jenny.she toys with forrests emotions throughout the entire movie and puts out at least 9 or 10 times.there are a lot of people who play thier roles well here.most everbody does well.its one of those movies you have to watch on tape because it never stops being good long enough to stop for a snack or a bathroom break.its that good!if a second one were somehow dreamt up it would be only a shadow of its predecesser.it is long,but an abselute gem in any video library. ... Read more


160. 12 Angry Men (1997)
Director: William Friedkin
list price: $59.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0792899830
Catlog: Video
Sales Rank: 5202
Average Customer Review: 4.06 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (35)

3-0 out of 5 stars Doesn't stand up to the original
Despite fine performances by all, especially Jack Lemmon in the Fonda role, this remake does not even come close to the original. It lacks the punch of the original and not all the actors meet the standards set by the original actors. Even the great Hume Cronyn, as good as he is, doesn't compare to his predecessor. Maybe I am disappointed in this movie because I saw the original first and judge it by that standard. On it's own, it's not a bad film but once you've made a classic why remake it? Do you really think you can get it better. Don't waste your money. Buy the original.

5-0 out of 5 stars What a remake!
I consider myself a very demanding movie watcher, and this one definitely satisfies my expectations. I had the chance to see both 1957 and 1997 versions for "12 angry men", and I must say my vote goes to the recent one. Friedkin manages to create a whole atmosphere which seems much more realistic to me than the rather rigid and sometimes mechanic performances shown on the earlier version. In my opinion, Friedkin's cast looks so natural in their expressions and personality, they don't seem to be 'acting', which is a fault often seen in older movies. Characters and psychological profiles were improved so that you recognize and identify everyone of them, and you have a feeling no man's missing and no man's unnecesary. Jack Lemmon and George C. Scott offer an astonishing display of talent, and Scott's final monologue makes Lee J Cobb's performance look pale and opaque. If I were to choose a lawyer, I'd take Lemmon instead of Fonda, no doubt about it. The variety of the cast brings a refreshing, believable and solid mosaic of personalities I just don't see in Lumet's film (1957). Don't turn your back on this remake. You may be missing a great movie.

3-0 out of 5 stars Nice effort, but doesn't stand up to the original
I really don't think a masterpiece like 12 ANGRY MEN needs a remake. This remake of the classic 1957 film makes many good efforts, but falls short in many points. First of all, I think Scott is excellent, and could stand serious comparison with Cobb in the original. (Alright, maybe his final monologue isn't quite as cyclonic as Cobb's, but perhaps Scott was wise in not trying to emulate that.) Many of the other actors are also very good. But some of the actors miss the mark on their characterizations. Olmos' watchmaker is a confused mess. (Who is he? Where is he from? What is his social class?) Gandolfini's Juror # 6 is surly and disagreeable, unlike Edward Binns' kindly original. The actor playing Juror # 5 is too confident and bold; in the original, this character was a scared and self-conscious young man who identified with the defendant. I admit that making Juror # 10 a former Nation of Islam member was a creative choice. But why does the judge (female in this version) not set up the atmosphere of physical discomfort and indifference, which are important themes in the movie? And why does # 10 decribe the defendant as a "common ignorant slob"? His appearance and dress do not suggest this! In the original movie, ALL the actors were superb and perfect for their parts; there were no weak links.

Another problem I have with this movie is that in some places it fastidiously modernizes, while in others it stays stubbornly in the 1950's. Why are there two Europeans on the jury? Before I saw the movie I thought sure there would be a Hispanic, an Asian, or a Middle Easterner. Why does Juror # 7 still sell marmalade as in the original? (Danza seems more like someone who would sell sports equipment or big-screen TV's!) Why does Juror #12 still present the dated stereotype of the 50's advertizing man? Why is the Olmos character still a watchmaker? Indeed, the screenplay was adapted by Reginald Rose, the writer for the 1957 version, and it is pretty close to the original script. I think in some instances he should have changed more than he did. The black and white and the camera work of the original do a much better job of creating the atmosphere of heat, claustrophobia, and grittiness in the jury room. And of course the central problem of updating this movie is that juries today would probably not consist entirely of men.

But above all, I find that this remake lacks the depth and richness of the original. I could spend all day analyzing the 1957 version, its many telling details, its layers of meaning, the countless psychological insights which the actors lend to their portrayals. Not so here. A case in point is Lemmon. His performance is good as far as it goes, but it is straightforward and one-dimensional. He has none of the complexity and shades of self-doubt that Fonda brought to the role. He seems more like a self-assured amateur lawyer than an architect pulled from the street. To sum it all up, I think the original 1957 12 ANGRY MEN is a timeless classic that neeeds no updating. This version has some good performances and is interesting to watch, but in the end it is superfluous.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Success
This movie was simply mesmerizing, I saw the first 12 angry men on AMC. But it was very tedious, and boring. My mother got summoned to jury duty a few months later and she would come home pissed off that she had to do this boring civil duty. so one night she stopped by BLOCKBUSTER VIDEO and rented the new version of 12 Angry Men and it blew us away. We still watch this video at least two times a week, Because it's hilarious, and refreshing to see the diversity in the cast (mainly due to a 40 year time time difference in the two movies) . At the same time it makes you think. I love all the performances by these fantastic actors. Especially those of Mykelti Milliamson, and George C. Scott, potraying the angriest jurors of all. I love when people can let their rage take over and show us all their real feelings towards people from other races, countries,etc.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very good!
Excellent remake, I think this one is better than the original. George C. Scott and Jack Lemmon are at their absolute best. Highly recommended. ... Read more


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