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  • Wachowski, Andy
  • Wachowski, Larry
  • Waggner, George
  • Wainwright, Rupert
  • Wajda, Andrzej
  • Walker, Giles
  • Walker, Hal
  • Walker, Pete
  • Wallace, Tommy Lee
  • Waller, Anthony
  • Wallerstein, Herb
  • Walsh, Raoul
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  • Wang, Wayne
  • Ward, Vincent
  • Warren, Jerry
  • Waters, John
  • Watt, Nate
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  • Wayans, Keenen Ivory
  • Wayne, John
  • Webb, Jack
  • Weiland, Paul
  • Wein, Yossi
  • Weir, Peter
  • Weis, Don
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  • Welles, Orson
  • Wellington, David
  • Wellman, William
  • Wells, Simon
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  • Winterbottom, Michael
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  • Wise, Herbert
  • Wise, Kirk
  • Wise, Robert
  • Witney, William
  • Wolff, Art
  • Wolk, Andy
  • Wong, Kar-Wai
  • Wong, Kirk
  • Wong, Taylor
  • Woo, John
  • Wood, Edward D
  • Wood, Sam
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  • Wyler, William
  • Wynne, Paul
  • Wynorski, Jim
  • click price to see details     click image to enlarge     click link to go to the store

    $685.95 $199.98 list($979.93)
    1. Star Trek The Next Generation
    $27.29 $26.99 list($38.99)
    2. The Andy Griffith Show - The Complete
    $636.95 $250.00 list($909.93)
    3. Star Trek Deep Space Nine - The
    $265.99 list($379.98)
    4. Star Trek The Original Series
    $27.99 $24.00 list($39.98)
    5. Baa Baa Black Sheep - Volume 1
    $90.99 list($129.98)
    6. Star Trek The Original Series
    $31.99 list($29.99)
    7. Beauty and the Beast (Disney Special
    $31.96 $28.51 list($39.95)
    8. F for Fake - Criterion Collection
    $149.99 $104.60
    9. BBC Shakespeare Tragedies DVD
    $11.24 $9.30 list($14.98)
    10. The Longest Day
    $20.24 $15.51 list($26.99)
    11. Citizen Kane (Two-Disc Special
    $11.24 $5.85 list($14.98)
    12. What Dreams May Come
    $14.97 $9.49 list($19.96)
    13. The Matrix
    $11.24 $10.07 list($14.98)
    14. Star Wars Ewok Adventures - Caravan
    $12.97 $7.99 list($19.96)
    15. The Matrix Revolutions (Widescreen
    $14.99 $14.57 list($19.98)
    16. The Sound of Music (Single Disc
    $14.99 $6.25 list($19.96)
    17. The Matrix Reloaded (Widescreen
    $34.99 list($49.98)
    18. Earth 2 - The Complete Series
    $321.99 list($499.92)
    19. The Sopranos - The Complete First
    $9.98
    20. Paris, Texas

    1. Star Trek The Next Generation - The Complete Seasons 1-7
    list price: $979.93
    our price: $685.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00062RCBW
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 7977
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    2. The Andy Griffith Show - The Complete Second Season
    list price: $38.99
    our price: $27.29
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0007Y08P6
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 29
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Description

    THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW - THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON, is a comedy about a North Carolina widower named Andy Taylor who divides his time between raising his son, Opie (Ron Howard) and being sheriff of the small and virtually crime-free town of Mayberry.With next to no crimes to solve, Andy spends time philosophizing and trying to calm down his cousin, Deputy Barney, played by Don Knotts. ... Read more

    Reviews (29)

    5-0 out of 5 stars I don't want to make a big mulage, or anything
    this is a wonderful collection!Great quality--- love the "lost snippets" that we never see due to television chopping these up so painfully!My ONLY complaint is about the previews on Disc 1 -- First of all, why would ANYONE who loves TAGS want to see previews to McGyver and Charmed???? puuuuleeeeeeeease!Secondly, if they MUST put previews, WHY can't we at least fast-forward them?I think it was pretty low for the company to make the previews unable to be forwarded through-- low!

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Andy Griffith Show - The Complete Second Season
    For those that complain, about the 7 minutes of advertising - obviously you all don't have the kind of DVD player I have, because I had no problem hitting the fast forward button a few times to 4th speed and I'm there. I'm watching all the wonderful episodes, while everyone else is complaining. My suggestions get some cheese with your wine!
    Besides if you all think you can do a better job, by all means do it and stop complaining!

    5-0 out of 5 stars GREAT TV!!!!
    What A Wonderful Set!!! The Added Sponser Spots By The Cast Are Very Funny!!! Lots Of Great Guest Stars, & Terrific Episodes!!! Bill Bixby, Barbara Eden & Alan Hale!!! As For The Paramount Ads....WHO CARES!!!!!!! Ten Minutes Of Ads To Get A Season Full Of Warmth, Heart & Humor Seems Like A Small Price To Pay!!! Keep The Seasons Coming!!!!!!!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars I'm not "forced" and I love the DVD!!!!
    I agree with David.I had little problem advancing passed the commercials, so I was not "forced" to watch any of them.Of course, Paramount could have been nice and left the commercials off, but their main concern is making money, and lots of it.The inconvience of spinning through the commercials (which takes me approximately 10 seconds) is nothing when compared to the rest of the DVD's content!This is easily the best situation comedy of all time and has never stopped being aired in the nearly 45 years since it first ran on CBS.This DVD will be highlighted in my DVD collection, just as season one is.I especially like the added "original sponsor spots",many of which I don't remember ever seeing before.Does anyone know if these "spots" ran during the first season of the show?If so, I hope they tag them on to the season three set along with the season three spots.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Commercialism Destroys The Enjoyment of Mayberry
    Paramount Studios (owned by Viacom) has taken their commercialism to an all time low.The Andy Griffith Show has been one of my favorite, most relaxing shows for many years.I purchased the complete 2nd season, anticipating laughs and relaxation.But, hold on.Paramount forces the viewer to sit through at least 10 MINUTES of advertisements on disc one - you cannot fast forward through it - you cannot switch to the top menu.The viewer must endure 10 miserable minutes, watching advertisements for other DVD's (which many of us have no interest in).This was not done on the complete first season.I'm seriously considering the return of this DVD set - I do not like to be exploited / forced to endure 10 unending minutes of commercial trash.I don't even watch regular TV - to avoid commercials.What a shame.What a shame that such a materialistic, moronic company owns the rights to The Andy Griffith Show.This has taught me to avoid ALL Paramount DVD's in the future.Burn me once, shame on you - there will not be a second time.

    Comments / complaints can be sent to:



    Paramount Studios
    5555 Melrose Avenue
    Hollywood, CA 90038

    323.956.5000

    ...Tom ... Read more


    3. Star Trek Deep Space Nine - The Complete Seasons 1-7
    list price: $909.93
    our price: $636.95
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    Asin: B00062RCC6
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 9792
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    4. Star Trek The Original Series - The Complete Seasons 1-3
    Director: James Goldstone, Murray Golden, James Komack, Don McDougall, Robert Butler, Marc Daniels, John Meredyth Lucas, Leo Penn, John Erman, David Alexander, Michael O'Herlihy, Jud Taylor, Herschel Daugherty, Ralph Senensky, Gerd Oswald, Lawrence Dobkin, Marvin J. Chomsky, Joseph Sargent, Herb Wallerstein, John Newland
    list price: $379.98
    our price: $265.99
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    Asin: B0002JJBZY
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 728
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    Amazon.com

    The facts have become legend. Star Trek, the NBC series that premiered on September 8, 1966, has become a touchstone of international popular culture. It struggled through three seasons that included cancellation and last-minute revival, and turned its creator, Gene Roddenberry, into the progenitor of an intergalactic phenomenon. Eventually expanding to encompass five separate TV series, an ongoing slate of feature films, and a fan base larger than the population of many third-world countries, the Star Trek universe began not with a Big Bang but with a cautious experiment in network TV programming. Even before its premiere episode ("The Man Trap") was aired, Star Trek had struggled to attain warp-drive velocity, barely making it into the fall '66 NBC lineup.

    The series' original pilot, "The Cage," featured Jeffrey Hunter as U.S.S. Enterprise captain Christopher Pike--a variation of the role that would eventually catapult William Shatner to TV stardom. Filmed in 1964, the pilot was rejected by NBC the following year, but the network made a rare decision to order a second pilot. "Where No Man Has Gone Before" was filmed in 1965, and only one character from the previous pilot remained--a pointy-eared alien named Spock (played by Leonard Nimoy), whom Roddenberry had retained despite network disapproval. The second pilot was accepted, and production on Star Trek began in earnest with the filming of its first regular episode, "The Corbomite Maneuver."

    Never a ratings success despite a growing population of devoted fans, Star Trek was canceled after its second season, prompting a letter-writing campaign that resulted in the series' third-season renewal. It was a mixed blessing, since Roddenberry had departed as producer to protest the network's neglect, and Star Trek's third season contained most of the series' weakest episodes. And yet, the show continued to "to explore strange new worlds…to seek out new life and new civilizations…to boldly go where no man [a phrase later amended to "no one"] has gone before."

    There were milestones along the way. The first interracial kiss on network primetime TV (between Shatner and series co-star Nichelle Nichols) furthered a richly positive and expansive view of a better, nobler future for humankind. The series offered a timelessly appealing balance of humor, imagination, and character depth. And at least one episode (Harlan Ellison's "The City on the Edge of Forever") ranks among the finest science fiction stories in any popular medium. Beloved by long-time fans in spite of its cheesy sets and costumes, and the now-dated trappings of late-1960s American culture, "classic Trek" has aged remarkably well, and its sense of adventure and idealism continues to live long and prosper. --Jeff Shannon

    The three 2004 DVD sets collect all 79 episodes of the show, including "The Cage" in both a restored color version and the original, never-aired version that alternates between color and black and white. Each set is supplemented by over an hour of featurettes incorporating new and old interviews with Shatner, Nimoy, other cast members, and producers, and there's also some vintage footage of Gene Roddenberry. Accompanying the 20-minute seasonal recaps ("To Boldly Go...") are a number of interesting featurettes: "The Birth of a Timeless Legacy" examines the two pilot episodes and the development of the crew; "Sci-Fi Visionaries" discusses the series' great science fiction writers; Nimoy debunks various rumors in "Reflections of Spock"; "Kirk, Spock & Bones: The Great Trio" focuses on the interplay among Kirk, Spock, and Dr. McCoy (DeForest Kelley); and, in what is probably his last Star Trek appearance, James Doohan (Scotty), slowed by Alzheimer's but still with a twinkle in his eye, recalls his voiceover roles and his favorite episodes.As they've done for many of the feature-film special editions, Michael Okuda and Denise Okuda provide a pop-up text commentary on four of the episodes filled with history, trivia, and dry wit. It's the first commentary of any kind for a Star Trek TV show, but an audio commentary is still overdue. The technical specs are mostly the same as other Trek TV series--Dolby 5.1, English subtitles--but with the welcome addition of the episode trailers. The plastic cases are an attempt to replicate some of the fun packaging of the series' European DVD releases, but it's a bit clunky, and the paper sleeve around the disc case seems awkward and crude. Still, the sets are a vast improvement both in terms of shelf space and bonus features compared to the old two-episode discs, which were released before full-season boxed sets became the model for television DVDs. --David Horiuchi ... Read more


    5. Baa Baa Black Sheep - Volume 1
    Director: Dana Elcar, Lawrence Doheny, Ivan Dixon, Russ Mayberry, Jackie Cooper, Philip DeGuere, Walter Doniger, Alex Beaton, Robert Conrad, Barry Shear, John Peyser, Edward Dein, William Wiard, Jeannot Szwarc
    list price: $39.98
    our price: $27.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0007YMWGY
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 93
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (12)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Baa! Baa! Baa! MORE! MORE! MORE!
    One of the proudest claims I can make about my life is being a former Marine, like Maj. Gregory "Gramps" Boyington; albiet an unknown to one of the most famous. ("The Duke" John Wayne wanted to be a Marine & didn't make it!) The only thing that gives me more pride is knowing these heroes respected guys like my sainted Dad, who flew gas & trash over "the Hump" in C-47's (the gray cargo plane in the series) from India into China over the Himalayas in support of their combat against the Japs.
    I was at NAS Lakehurst in 1978 when this great show aired on commercial T.V. and, even though most of us knew the show was highly Hollywoodized, we would still take over the barracks rec room everytime it aired, and would yell & cheer like Limey football fans thru every combat scene in each episode.
    With all the second rate crapola flooding the market these days, it's GREAT to see DVD's of a show worth the expense hit the shelves, and I really hope the entire series will be issuedsooner or later (PREFERREDLY SOONER!!!!!!)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Next?
    AWESOME, I GOT IT, I LIKED IT, NOW WHEN IS THE NEXT "VOLUME" COMING OUT.LET'S STOP BEING SECRETIVE AMAZON

    3-0 out of 5 stars Volume One, Not Season One
    When I opened the shipping box, I was surprised to see that I was only getting half of Season One.I need to train myself to make sure that the Title reads "Season One" instead of "Volume One."After the initial shock, I started to enjoy the episodes I remember when the show was called "Baa Baa Black Sheep."I like how they kept the scenes of what was to come before the opening...a 70's TV drama thing.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Disappointment for such a great series
    I eagerly awaited for this series to come out on DVD and now that I have it I was disappointed in the way they produced it. FIrst I don't care for the two sided discs but the main disappointment was the fact that they didn't include all of Season one's shows, just 10 shows plus the pilot. Since this show only ran two years and considering how much they charged (which is reasonable for a Season One if it is complete!!!) It seems to me that they should have included the complete season One. I sure hope they put out the rest of Season One and for Season Two put all of the showes out at once!! This is a great show, Robert Conrad is so sexy in that tight flight suit, sort of distracts me from theFU-4s!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Only Half of the First Season
    I was disappointed on opening the box to find only 12 of the 24 first season episodes.Not a great deal but still worth getting. ... Read more


    6. Star Trek The Original Series - The Complete Third Season
    Director: James Goldstone, Murray Golden, James Komack, Don McDougall, Robert Butler, Marc Daniels, John Meredyth Lucas, Leo Penn, John Erman, David Alexander, Michael O'Herlihy, Jud Taylor, Herschel Daugherty, Ralph Senensky, Gerd Oswald, Lawrence Dobkin, Marvin J. Chomsky, Joseph Sargent, Herb Wallerstein, John Newland
    list price: $129.98
    our price: $90.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0002JJBZO
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 163
    Average Customer Review: 3.33 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    Saved from the brink of cancellation by its loyal fanbase, Star Trek's third and final season rewarded them with a number of memorable episodes.Tight budgets and slipping creative control, however, made it the series' most uneven season, though it did have some of the coolest episode titles ("For the World Is Hollow and I Have Touched the Sky," "Is There in Truth No Beauty," "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield").Some of the best moments involved a gunfight at the OK Corral ("Spectre of the Gun"), a knock-down drag-out sword battle with the Klingons aboard the Enterprise ("Day of the Dove"), the ship getting caught in an ever-tightening spacial net ("The Tholian Web"), TV's first interracial kiss ("Plato's Stepchildren," and it should be easy to guess who participated), Sulu taking command ("The Savage Curtain"), and Kirk's switching bodies with an ex-love interest ("Turnabout Intruder").

    Also appearing in the set as a coda are two versions of the series pilot, "The Cage," a restored color version and the original, never-aired version that alternates between color and black and white.Starring Jeffery Hunter as Captain Pike, Leonard Nimoy as a relatively emotional Spock, and Majel Barrett (the future Nurse Chapel and Mrs. Gene Roddenberry) as a frosty Number One, this pilot was rejected, but a second was commissioned, "Where No Man Has Gone Before," now considered the "official" beginning of the series.But "The Cage" is very recognizably Star Trek with its far-out concepts (telepathic aliens collecting species samples), sexy humanoid women, character development, and of course cheesy costumes and special effects.Footage was later reused in the season 1 two-parter, "The Menagerie."

    The best of the 63 minutes of bonus material focuses on three of the actors: Walter Koenig, George Takei, and James Doohan.Koenig discusses how he was cast and shows off his various collections, one consisting of Chekov figurines.Takei speaks movingly about the Japanese American internment and, in what is probably his last Star Trek appearance, Doohan, slowed by Alzheimer's but still with a twinkle in his eye, recalls his voiceover roles and his favorite episodes.The Easter eggs are amusingly called "Red Shirt Files" in tribute to those poor saps who everyone knew were only in the landing party so they could die.--David Horiuchi ... Read more

    Reviews (3)

    4-0 out of 5 stars The Third Complete Season in an 8-DVD Set! Fantastic!
    When Paramount Home Video first started to release the original series of "Star Trek" in 1999, I was aghast at the fact that only one DVD with two episodes per DVD were being released one DVD at a time at a very high cost. The cost to own all 40 volumes (DVD's) was staggering. Of course, this doesn't even address the amount of shelf space required for all 40 DVD's.

    Now, with this repackaged version, all 24 episodes of the third season are being released together on 8 disks. It will probably also include both versions (color and black-and-white) of the unaired original pilot "The Cage". This is the packaged version of the original "Star Trek" that I fully intend to purchase because even at full list price, the cost of owning the third complete season is less than half the cost of owning its earlier cousins on an equivalent 13 DVD's. Also, the packaging itself has been designed similarly to the packaging used for other "Star Trek" series released in complete seasons, meaning that it will only require a small amount of shelf space. It is also possible that extra documentary and commentary material not released originally will be included in this complete third season box set.

    The original series of "Star Trek", that ran for three complete seasons between 1966 and 1969, started a franchise that has included six television series and ten big screen motion pictures. The main original characters of Captain James T. Kirk (William Shatner), Lt. Commander/Commander Spock (Leonard Nimoy), Dr. Leonard H. 'Bones' McCoy (DeForest Kelley, 1920-1999), Lt. Cmdr. Montgomery 'Scotty' Scott (James Doohan), Lt. Hikaru Sulu (George Takei), Lt. Nyota Uhura (Nichelle Nichols), Ensign Pavel Chekov (Walter Keonig from 1967-1969), Yeoman Janice Rand (Grace Lee Whitney from 1966-1967) and Nurse Christine Chapel (Majel Barrett) have become an inseparable part of Americana. Though series creator Gene Roddenberry (1921-1991) was not able to keep the original series alive for five seasons as originally envisioned (it was cancelled after its third season), he, along with the countless series fans, was able to resurrect it in the form of six motion pictures beginning in 1979 and the first series spin-off, "Star Trek: The Next Generation" in 1987, which ran for seven years and had spin-offs of its own. There was also a 22-episode animated version based upon the original series that ran from 1972 to 1974.

    In spite of receiving five Emmy nominations during its life and several previously successful efforts (including letter-writing campaigns) that had saved the show from cancellation on more than one occasion, the combination of poor Nielsen ratings, a shrinking budget and too-often weak episode writing made the third season of "Star Trek" its last. The most memorable episodes of the third season include "Spock's Brain", "The Enterprise Incident" (using Klingon ships for Romulans), "The Paradise Syndrome", "Is There No Truth in Beauty" (with guest character Dr. Ann Mulhall as played by Diana Muldaur, who had previously guest acted in the second-season episode "Return to Tomorrow" and also played the unpopular character Dr. Katherine Pulaski in the second season of "Star Trek: The Next Generation"), "For the World Is Hollow and I Have Touched the Sky", "The Tholian Web", "Plato's Stepchildren" (which had the first inter-racial kiss on televsion), "Wink of an Eye", "The Empath", "Elaan of Troyius", "Whom Gods Destroy", "The Mark of Gideon", "The Lights of Zetar", "Requiem for Methuselah", "The Cloud Minders", "The Savage Curtain" and "All Our Yesterdays". Arguably, the worst episode during the third season was "The Way to Eden", about a group of hippies searching for Eden (the probable inspiration for the worst-ever "Star Trek" film, "Star Trek V: The Final Frontier" in 1989). Other particularly weak third-season episodes include "And the Children Shall Lead", "Spectre of the Gun" featuring a re-enactment of the old-West shoot-out at the O.K. Corral, "Day of the Dove", "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield" about racism, "That Which Survives" and the final episode "Turnabout Intruder" that showcased some of Shatner's worst acting abilities.

    Ironically, six weeks after "Turnabout Intruder" aired on 6/3/1969, Neil Armstrong and 'Buzz' Aldrin became the first human beings to land and walk upon an extraterrestrial body, Earth's moon, on 7/20/1969. Shortly thereafter, interest in "Star Trek" grew considerably. Paramount Pictures nearly resurrected the television show in 1977 (called "Star Trek: Phase II") after all but Leonard Nimoy had signed on, but the project was abandoned shortly after George Lucas' 1977 film "Star Wars" blew audiences away. Fans had to wait another two years when the disappointing film "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" was released. It is interesting to note that two of people (Jo and John Trimble) who started one of the successful letter-writing campaigns that had once saved "Star Trek" from cancellation in 1968, were the same people that started a letter-writing campaign to convince NASA to name the first space shuttle "Enterprise" in honor of "Star Trek".

    Overall, I rate the 8-DVD set of "Star Trek: Original Series Season 3" with an anticipatory 4 out of 5 stars. Clearly, this is how Paramount should have released the original series to begin with. Though the third season suffered from more poor episodes than the previous two, I continue to thank Gene Roddenberry for taking all of us "where no man has gone before".

    2-0 out of 5 stars Only a small handful of good shows.
    Thrid Season of Star Trek was it's last and it was marked by both a feud between Gene Roddenbery and a new producer over the show's budget. Somewhat more cheaper production values, decreaaed visual effects work, and poore writing. The few Exceptions were "The Enterprise Incident, The Tholian Web, Let That Be Your Last Battlefield, That Which Survies, The Lights of Zetar, and the Savage Curtain

    4-0 out of 5 stars ST's final frontier
    Barely getting renewed for a third season,Star Trek had two disadvantages when it returned.First was executive producer Gene Coon's departure from the series, as well Gene Roddenberry's decreased involvement.The other was a new timeslot on Friday at 10:00 PM, a slot known to bury flagging shows by the networks.
    Over the years, many blamed the new producer Fred Frieberg for the lacking quality of the show. Freiberg's only sin was coming aboard a sinking ship which was suffering budget cuts as well as weak stories and it's creator's lack of interest due to the networks total disregard of the show.
    Even with the few brilliant episodes (Empath, Paradise Syndrome,Enterprise Incident, Tholian Web, Requium Of Methuselah,All Our Yesterdays), season three is notorious with two of the worst ever in the history of Trek (The Way To Eden, and Spock's Brain).
    By the end of season three,ST was finally cancelled after 78 aired episodes in 1969.Even fans couldn't save it, as NBC buried the show.But thanks to syndication, ST became even more popular than when it originally aired and build upon a growing franchise (Conventions, Saturday Morning cartoons,toys, etc,).The ten years after the end of the series,Star Trek The Motion Picture premired.And that was just the beginning. ... Read more


    7. Beauty and the Beast (Disney Special Platinum Edition)
    Director: Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise
    list price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00003CX8Y
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 443
    Average Customer Review: 4.62 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (332)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent job Disney.
    I saw this when it first came out in theaters back in 1992. I was only 7 or 8 at the time, and it just didn't appeal to me as much as The Little Mermaid or The Rescuers Down Under. I don't really know why, but having just getting the DVD in the mail, my view of the movie is completely different.

    Beauty and the Beast really is one of Disney's top 4 animated films. How they managed to combine a massive cast of characters into the main plot is amazing. Beast is one of my favorite Disney characters after re-watching this. There's so much emotion inside of him. Anger, rage, pity, ambition, and love. You'll really care for him from the moment he appears on screen. Belle is possibly the most humble heroine to date. She doesn't see that she's beautiful, but just cares for helping others and reading books. The supporting cast is just as good. Gaston, the villain, is just a....well I can't use the word. You can bet your money you'll feel the same way. But the characters are just the icing on the cake. The story is what the strong point's always been. Disney did a great job adding so much more to it, whereas the original didn't focus on anyone but Belle and the Beast really. But I'm sure you all know the story, so I'll just get into the features on this DVD.

    On the first disc, you get 3 different versions of the film- theatrical, work in progress, and special edition. The theatrical is what you saw in theaters or on the home video release. Work in progress is mostly drawings in black and white while the voices and everything else is put in. The special edition has a few lines changed here and there, and the added musical "Human Again" into the film. Personally, I hated "Human Again". It comes right after and before other songs in the film, making you want them to just get on with the story. Plus the animation in it really stands out since it's newer and has those annoying shadows on every character that you see in so many made for video animated movies. There's also a commentary track that adds a lot of depth and information, and a game that unlocks another game. People complain about the picture quality of the movie, but it's not that bad. On a scale of one to ten, I'd give it a 7.5.

    The second disc has a well done documentary on the making of Beauty and the Beast, story origins of a few other Disney movies, art galleries, music videos, more games, and much more. Amazon lists that the Broadway Musical is on this, but it isn't. It's mentioned in the documentary, that's all. This sets the standard for extras on Disney special editions of their movies. It's too bad The Lion King has nothing compared to this. Either way, if you like Disney at all...or just movies, you should go for this while you can. It's a masterpiece, and getting harder to find.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A thinking girl's heroine
    When I saw "Beauty and the Beast" in the theater, I had a rare and magical experience: I felt like a child again watching an enchanting Disney movie. In fact, "Beauty and the Beast" seemed even better than the Disney classics like "Cinderella" and "Sleeping Beauty" that were such a wonderful part of my childhood. The animation is absolutely gorgeous--particularly the waltz scene, which feels incredibly three-dimensional. The songs are beautiful, singable instant classics.

    Despite the animated characters, I felt like I was watching an old musical. The movie opens with a scene reminiscent of "The Sound of Music," with our heroine, Belle, singing on a hilltop about wanting more out of life. The "Be Our Guest" scene, featuring a Lumiere (the Maurice Chevalier-inspired singing candlestick), dancing dishes and champagne corks popping like fireworks, reminded me of the Busby Berkely musical extravaganzas of the '30s.

    A big appeal for me is that Belle is a much different heroine than the Disney princesses of my childhood. Belle isn't looking for a man to rescue her from her life of drudgery. She loves to read and longs for a more interesting life. She already has the "town catch," Gaston, wanting to court her, but she's having none of it.

    Belle's escape from "her provincial life" begins when her father, a kooky inventor, doesn't return from his travels. (He has sought shelter from a snow storm in a spooky enchanted castle and is being held prisoner by the Beast.) Belle tracks down her father and, out of concern for his ailing health, takes his place in captivity. The Beast, who has been placed under a spell, wonders if Belle might be "the one"--the young woman whose love will return him to his original human form.

    The enchanted furniture, candlestick, clock and dishes added lots of fun characters to the traditional story. Cogsworth, a stuffy clock, and Lumiere, the match-making candlestick are a great comic duo. Cogsworth's romantic advice to Beast about wooing Belle is especially funny: Give her "flowers, chocolates, promises you don't intend to keep."

    Gaston, meanwhile, wants to woo and wed Belle himself. He sings about his he-man attributes in one of the funniest ode to a redneck that I've ever heard: "I use antlers in all of my decorating," Gaston sings about himself.

    When Gaston realizes that Belle loves the Beast instead of him, he stirs up an angry mob to head to the castle. In another twist on the traditional fairy tale ending, Belle ultimately rescues the Beast--not the other way around.

    "Beauty and the Beast" is a delightful classic whether you are a child or a grownup who knows how to feel like a child at times.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Pure Magic!
    Bringing this classic fairy tail to life is one of the best things that Disney has ever done. Every second of this film is full to the brim with wonder and magic. More than ten years after first seeing it, there are still some scenes that make me gasp at their beauty.
    The movie provides all of the usual Disney elements of gorgeous animation, skilled voice actors, awesome original songs, and non-stop entertainment, but there's something special in the mix. We get one of the most believable and heart felt romances to ever grace the animated world. As a child every time I read a picture book of this Fairy Tail I found it impossible to believe that a woman could love a beast, but Disney found a way to make it happen. You truly believe that it's possible, and feel her pain when she thinks she's lost him.
    In the classic Disney fashion, Beauty and the Beast brings along a message for the kids to learn. We see the value of intelligence and compassion, learn to look beyond the superficial, and discover that love knows no boundaries.

    5-0 out of 5 stars After A While One Doesn't Notice It Is Animated
    It is quite rare for any animated film to be treated with the same respect as any other honored non-animated one. In BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, directors Kirk Wise and Gary Trousdale take the time-worn fairy tale of the outwardly loathsome beast who impossibly enough allows his inner nobility to shine forth sufficiently to cause the beauty to fall in love with him. Robby Benson is the voice of the Beast and Paige O'Hara is Beauty. Even for those readers familiar with the spoken tale or the revamped music video with Meatloaf as the Beast cannot help but allow themselves to be entranced with the seamless melding of sight to sound. The plot is simplicity itself with the Beast as the archetypal symbol of the rebirth of nobility long hidden by the evil spell of a unnamed wizard. There is nothing childish is the unfolding of the tale of Belle the Beauty who chooses to sacrifice herself in marriage to save the life of her doddering inventor father. Enter the Beast who is initially presented as the roaring brute that his tormenting wizard clearly intended him to be. Yet, as Belle ministers to his psychic wounds of self-loathing and his physical wounds incurred in defending her against a pack of wolves, the viewer can see a competing spell at work, one that is older than time itself--the power of love that the film's many songs allude to and function as as subtext that imbues it with timeless energy. There is, of course, some needed plot complications of unwanted attention heaped on Belle by the handsome but warped Gaston, who plots to snare Belle in marriage as firmly as he would stalk a reindeer for its antlers. As Gaston leads the villagers in an assault on the Beast's manor, one is reminded in reverse of the cliched villagers pounding at the walls of Doctor Frankenstein's castle, but in this case the attack in presented in comic tones that keep the real world of harm at bay.

    BEAUTY AND THE BEAST has no down moments, with each fresh plot advancement heralded by stunningly effective animation and song. This film was a deserved nominee for Best Picture in 1991, and with repeated viewings, one may rest assured that the alternately gloomy and resplendent halls of the Beast will eternally resonate with the same cachet that gives Tara, Oz, or Rick's Cafe a ticket that allows the bearer to see just how awesome the human spirit can be.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Beauty
    This is a beautiful movie and is in a wonderful set. It has two discs with great behind the scenes stuff for Beauty and the Beast that you definitely wont want to miss out on.
    The colors in this movie is beautiful and the music is lovely.
    I really wouldn't miss out on this movie because it's a great film and a wonderful set. ... Read more


    8. F for Fake - Criterion Collection
    Director: Orson Welles
    list price: $39.95
    our price: $31.96
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    Asin: B0007M2234
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 1063
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    To call Orson Welles's F For Fake a documentary would be somewhat deceitful, but deceit itself is very much the subject of this curious film essay. Welles ruminates on the nature of artistic fakery through two examples, that of infamous art forger Elmyr de Hory and the writer Clifford Irving, whose bogus autobiography of Howard Hughes set off a minor media flurry in the 1970s. Postmodernist that he is, Wells then proceeds to narrate and edit the film in such a perversely frenetic way as to blur the lines between what is real and what is deception, making for an often confusing but engaging work of art in itself. We even see the footage we've been watching as it's being spliced together in Welles's editing room. The specter of Welles's often maligned later career hangs over the proceedings like a challenge--is he going to actually complete this strange movie about chicanery, or will it become one of the many unfinished experiments of his twilight years? Happily, Welles concludes the proceedings with a delightful sequence about Picasso, lust, and what constitutes real art. F For Fake is a fine example of a master filmmaker who had at least a couple tricks left up his sleeve. --Ryan Boudinot ... Read more

    Reviews (17)

    4-0 out of 5 stars G For Great
    Orson Welles' "For for Fake" can be at times a very confusing movie. But, if you find yourself confused, the problem is your thinking to hard. You're trying to make sense of a movie that simply doesn't want you to make sense of it. Think of the film as a magic act. You know you're being fooled, but you sit and watch anyways because you are being entertained. To think how the trick was done that's away from the mystery. And just like a magican Welles' doesn't want to reveal his secrets.

    "F for Fake" is supposedly about a famous art forger, Elmyr de Hory and the relationship between himself and a man named Clifford Irving. Right from the beginning Welles tells us we are going to watch a movie about lies and deception.

    At first the film, notice a called it a film not a documentary, plays off as real. We think we are seeing a movie that is examing how in fact is Elmyr de Hory. At admittedly it is very interesting. Welles comprises this material in a very effective way. Though all the while we are asking ourselves, just how much as this can we trust?

    The film zips through three main plot points. One dealing with de Hory another involving Howard Hughes,which leads us back to Clifford Irving, and then finally a segment about Welles himself and some of the tricks he has pulled off, namely his famous "War of the Worlds" radio broadcast.

    "F for Fake" I believe was the last film Welles directed, and while it may not be in the same league as his other works; "Citizen Kane", "Touch of Evil", or "Chimes at Midnight" it is still an enjoyable film. In some ways it is quite fitting that this would be his last film. He was a man who had to struggle to find a place in the Hollywood studio system to get his films made and here he has the last laugh.

    Bottom-line: Highly entertaining film about lies and deception. The movie has the ability to suck us into its story, and manages to fool us. Worthwhile for fans of Orson Welles.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A rich film, nothing else like it
    Orson Welles's F For Fake is a great film, and it's surprising to me that it isn't more widely acclaimed.A brilliant investigation into lying, manipulation, and the chicanery that forms the foundation of high culture, it reminds me of something Michael Moore might do if he were more concerned with metaphysics than politics, or Ross McElwee if he wore a cape and was outwardly self-obsessed.Great stuff, especially for anyone jaded by the b.s. flowing from the art world.
    My one complaint-a few too many shots of Kodar prancing around in high heels-Welles's work in those sections was like a twelve year old's idea of what sexually attractive looks like.
    Brilliantly shot and edited, narrated with style and panache by Welles, and it has substance to back up the style.
    Criterion added some good extras.The unreleased trailer for F For Fake might be even better than the movie itself--it makes promises God himself couldn't keep.The documentary on Welles's late period of unfinished work is enjoyable, but by no means a revelation.The clips that are shown are intriguing, but a more penetrating and honest analysis of his later years by someone more removed from the subject would have been preferable to Kodar's well-intentioned puff piece.The swinging london skit shown in the film is hilarious.
    The documentary on De Hory is okay, a bit dry, and has a bit of a smell of "expert" posturing about it.The 60 minutes interview with Clifford Irving is strange.The man reveals nothing that rings sincerely.Based on it, Irving comes off to me as the most dangerous and desperate man involved in the proceedings.There doesn't seem to be anything there beyond an enthusiasm for finding an angle and playing it successfully.Hughes's telephone interview is sad for the promises he makes and the potential he had.
    In all, a great package and nearly worth the steep price tag

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fake in the most truthful way possible.
    Sure, I saw Citizen Kane. It was pretty good, but despite what all the experts said, it wasn't the best film I'd ever seen, let alone of all time. After seeing Kane I was utterly convinced of Greg Tolland's genius but Orson Welles? Eh, not so much. Having seen him in Kane I thought he was terribly overrated, because I just couldn't see what the whole fuss was about. I wasn't impressed because the first time I saw Kane, it reminded me of the Simpsons episode that paid homage to the movie--and I thought the Simpsons was better! I thought that it was so full of cliches, but then I remembered it's like that joke about the person who went to see Hamlet for the first time and came back pouting that it was full of cliches.

    But because I'm a sporting type of person, I finally decided to watch F for Fake just to figure out if Welles really was as good a director as everyone in the world seemed to think he was. I'd give him one more film, I said to myself, but really I'd written him off. I thought I was going to unmask the fake--I'd expose Welles for the overrated, overblown director he was.

    Boy, was I wrong. This movie is like nothing else I've ever seen; as someone else remarked, this is MTV before MTV, this is meta before meta, this movie blows Kane out of the water and more. Oja Kodar said that Orson Welles often edited his films with an ear for music, and if that's the case then this film is pure jazz. Such unparalleled virtuoso narration is nothing short of AMAZING. Prior to seeing this film, I'd fallen in love with Michael Winterbottom's 24 Hour Party People released in 2002 which is a pretty good send-up of the Manchester scene, that also takes place in the editing room. But F for Fake came out a full 25 years before that movie and despite the retro feel, it blows it out of the water.

    The extra features on the second disc are quite noteworthy, if only because they showcase footage from Kodar and Welles' unfinished movies, a veritable treasure trove of lost masterpieces. Watching Kodar and Welles together, one gets a sense of a real, loving, creative partnership between the two of them.

    On a sidenote, I left this film with a great appreciation for Orson's "intractable contrariness" and his great desire to always push the envelope in service of his Art. Though Welles does claim to be a charlatan, a fraud, an utter fake, he was perhaps the very best at using lies to tell the truth.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Genius Stifled
    Orson Welles' 1937 "Julius Caesar" is the longest running Broadway production of the play. Welles played Brutus. In 1938, Welles' On-the-Air Mercury Theatre broadcast "War of the Worlds". It was a hoax. But it caused a nationwide panic. Listeners were convinced that the Earth was being invaded by Mars. RKO Studios signed Welles to direct "Citizen Kane" in 1941. It is regarded by many as the Best Film ever made. Welles had conquered stage, radio, and the cinema. Criterion has just released the flawless, two-disc DVD, "F For Fake", an anamorphic, digitally-restored transfer(1.66:1).Disc One is Welles' 1976 essay/documentary; a non-linear, freeze-frame interview of art forger Elmyr De Hory, culled from 35mm and blown-up 16mm. Elmyr's biographer, Clifford Irving, is later exposed as the fraudulent chronicler of Howard Hughes. "F For Fake" features Joseph Cotten, Laurence Harvey, and Welles' mistress, Oja Kodar. Filmed in France, Rome, and southern California, "F For Fake" includes shots of Howard Hughes' bungalow at the Beverly Hills Hotel. It was the last film Welles ever directed. Extras include a Peter Bogdanovich introduction, a nine-minute trailer(curiously un-restored), and a commentary track. Disc Two contains the elusive 88-minute documentary, "One-Man Band". It has never been available before on film, video, or DVD( I saw it once 2 years ago on late-night cable). The 1995 "One-Man Band" examines Welles' lost/unfinished movies. This treasure trove includes scenes from "The Other Side of the Wind", "The Deep", and, reportedly, his mysterious "Don Quixote(A work in progress, on-and-off, for 15 years)". Welles stares into the camera, pauses, and recites Herman Melville in fragments of his "Moby Dick". He is electrifying. The process is staggering; and finally heart-breaking. So much talent, and finally, a sense of loss. Disc Two has another stunning documentary, an essay, a 60 Minutes excerpt, and a Howard Hughes press conference. Director, actor, writer, painter, magician. Orson Welles was, perhaps, the greatest auteur of the 20th Century. Big words. Big man. Big cigar. Welles once said that we are all really 2 or 3 different people inside. Or none of these at all. Was Orson Welles a fake?Welles' classic 1958 "Touch of Evil" ended in these last lines:Tanya: Isn't somebody gonna come and take him away?Schwartz: Yeah, in just a few minutes. You really liked him, didn't you?Tanya: The cop did..the one who killed him...he loved him.Schwartz:Is that all you have to say for him? Tanya:He was some kind of a man...What does it matter what you say about people?

    5-0 out of 5 stars Film Unlike Other Films - A Cinematic Thesis...
    Society consists of symbols with a wide range of meanings within the world.The alphabet is one of most commonly used code systems of symbols.The letters in the alphabet have the power to form words and every single word has a meaning.When a number of words such as nouns, verbs, and adjectives fuse together, they form a sentence.The structure of a sentence is to produce a contextual meaning, which sometimes uses symbolism to enhance the sentences in regards to the theme of the topic.Several joined sentences create a paragraph, which usually focuses on one idea that also could be a symbol.A number of ideas compiled into a narrative form makes a thesis for readers to contemplate, which could help the person either assimilate, or adapt the new ideas to previous knowledge and wisdom.This is due to the notion that new ideas comprise a symbolic meaning for the individual.Orson Welles seems to have used this concept when he made the film, F for Fake.

    F for Fake playfully utilizes every single scene while maximizing the symbolic value of words, images, and behavior among the individuals portrayed in the film.These scenes offer several representational impressions to the audience, as Welles' meticulous editing seems to have the same meaning a typewriter has to a writer.In this sense, F for Fake does not offer a conventional film or documentary, as Welles uses both authentic film clips edited with stage performances.Instead, Welles advocates his ideas in neither a fictionalized nor a non-documentary manner, as he fuses these two into a notion of deceit, forgery, trickery, and any other way that could deceive the audience.In 1972 over a Parisian lunch with writer and film essayist Jonathan Rosenbaum he expressed that he was working on this film, which Welles referred to as a new kind of film.The structure of the film brings the notion of a thesis where the candidate attempts to support his or her own thesis from a wide range of angles.Each visual symbol has a meaning while the scenes form the visual sentences, as the different acts form paragraphs in this cinematic thesis.The heavy editing, which Welles spent over a year on, describes Welles' cerebrally complexity while trying to defend this extraordinarily cinematic thesis.

    In the beginning of the film Welles implies that a key he used for a magic trick "...was not symbolic of anything."This, however, suggests another deceit, as the audience has already seen the sequence and had time to ponder the meaning of the key to which Welles is fully aware.The pondering has already caused the audience to give the key a visual meaning, which the viewer has either assimilated or adapted to previous knowledge.There is also a scene where the audience gets to follow a stunning woman in high heels and a short miniskirt , as several people open their eyes starring while salivating and car horns honk in the background.Suggestively, the scene causes the audience to think that all the men probably are secretively wishing for the woman's company.This too is a clever lie, as Welles simply has edited together a number of scenes which insinuate that people are starring while horns can be heard in the background.Welles seems to suggest that what one sees cannot be believed, as what one sees might only be a fabricated version of the truth.

    To comfort the audience Welles informs that the viewers that they will not be victims to deception as he places in writing that "For the next hour everything in this film is strictly based on the available facts."This portion of the film leads the audience through a two-piece sequence about a famous art forger named Elmyr de Hory, Cliff Irving, and the eccentric billionaire Howard Hughes.One focuses on Elmyr while the second part emphasizes Elmyr's biographer Irving who also was into forgery, as he wrote a forged autobiography by Howard Hughes who then lived secretively in a luxury Las Vegas penthouse.This brings several of the previous notions back, as Welles continues to discuss the idea of deceit.One of the interesting ideas in this sequence explains the meaninglessness of experts, as fakers cannot be troubled by experts.One thing that Elmyr advises of is that no one should have the ultimate power to decide quality, as he himself probably fooled many so-called experts with his own forgeries.This also implies that the expert could as well be the faker, if this one person knew what was good.This notion would also suggest that this very review would be a fake, as it also does not express anything unique while it merely retells the design and purpose of the film.

    F for Fake offers an intriguing cinematic thesis that crawls within the brain causing an itch that does not seem to want to leave.The film is nothing like anything that Welles has done before, or after this film, which also supports what he has said in regards to the film.One reason that no other film that he created since did not mimic this film could be the concept of the film, as it provides an opportunity for him to play with his own ideas in a visual manner.This film took over a year for him to make, as it also seems to be a film of personal growth and understanding of the world as a whole.The personal aspect of the film seems to saturate the whole experience, as he refers to himself while acting and making comments in regards to the people in film from behind the cutting board.Ultimately, Welles attempts to erase the idea of him being the "expert", as he provides examples of his own forgery from when he provided the War of the Worlds over the radio, which caused mass hysteria throughout the United States. ... Read more


    9. BBC Shakespeare Tragedies DVD Giftbox
    Director: Jonathan Miller, Jack Gold, Rodney Bennett, Herbert Wise
    list price: $149.99
    our price: $149.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00006FXDE
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 7337
    Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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    Description

    Shakespeare is rightly considered the world's greatest playwright for the soaring beauty of his language, for his profound insight into human nature, for the truths he dramatized and for the realism of the characters he created.He was, and remains, a superb entertainer.

    These BBC and Time-Life film productions feature some of Britain's most distinguished theatrical talent (Anthony Hopkins, Sir John Gielgud, Patrick Stewart, Derek Jacobi, Claire Bloom and more), these DVD's now are the number-one choice for continuing personal enjoyment.

    This special Drama DVD Giftbox Set contains 5 of Shakespeare's most popular tragedies: *Romeo and Juliet

    *Hamlet

    *Macbeth

    *Julius Caesar

    *Othello.

    The Plays contain sub-titles in English that can be turned on or off.

    TV Guide Raves: "Shakespeare Would Be Amused.by the care, money, time and talent that are being lavished on the mammoth task of producing all 37 of his plays." ... Read more

    Reviews (2)

    3-0 out of 5 stars At Last! The First Part Of The Ambrose Series!
    This is the Ambrose video series that many libraries have purchased...The 37 play VHS series is still >$2,500 with individual plays around $100. The series was remarkable in that it actually included all 37 plays in full with a solid set of players (some famous) who worked hard at maintaining as much historical accuracy as possible, but especially with the verbiage.

    This set has selected some of the best ones, so it is well worth the expense. The problem is that many of the scenes are less than sparkling....it's very much like watching the filming of the series of plays instead of watching a movie or TV version.....even the Bard himself would have struggled to keep the life in them with no audience. Sometimes the effort for accuracy actually shows in some of the acting. You have to give the various troups credit for sticking to the goals of the series, but realize that it is done with some sacrifices to the thrill and magic at some points.

    Romeo & Juliet stars Sir John Gielgud, Rebecca Saire, & Patrick Ryecart
    It's difficult to make a really bad R&J and with these folks this is a good version.

    Hamlet stars Derek Jacobi, Patrick Stewart, & Claire Bloom
    Jacobi makes this work....because it certainly is possible to do a horrible Hamlet.

    Macbeth stars Nicol Williamson & Jane Lapotaire.
    The scenes work even though there are times when you know for sure they are filming a play, not acting for the big screen.

    Julius Cesear stars Richard Pasco, Keith Michell & Charles Gray.
    I have to admit that this is the one play where my kids were so bored they actually asked if they could just read it instead of watch the video.....this one is not done as well as the rest of the series....I'm surprised it was chosen for the DVD set.

    Othello stars Anthony Hopkins, Bob Hoskins, & Anthony Pedley
    Hopkins said Othello was the one role he most wanted to play, so they gave it to him.....of course he's good....this is by far the best of the 5 play set

    What I like about the Ambrose Video series is the hard-to-find plays.....like All's Well That Ends Well, Coriolanus, Cymbeline, Measure For Measure, Henry VI, Henry VIII....it's nice to see the whole Henry and Richard historical series with the same troup. Perhaps we'll get a "rare" set and a "historical" set on DVD out of them next.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Best of Shakespeare
    In this gorgeous set of 5 plays produced by the BBC & Time-Life you get the pleasure of seeing some of the most wonderful talent such as, the late Sir John Gielgud in Romeo & Juliet, Jane Lapotaire in Macbeth, Anthony Hopkins in Othello, Patrick Stewart & Derek Jacobi in Hamlet just to name a few!!! The set comes with a full cast list for all titles and english sub-titles so you can read along. A must-see. ... Read more


    10. The Longest Day
    Director: Darryl F. Zanuck, Ken Annakin, Bernhard Wicki, Andrew Marton
    list price: $14.98
    our price: $11.24
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    Asin: B00005PJ8S
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 787
    Average Customer Review: 4.38 out of 5 stars
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    The Longest Day is Hollywood's definitive D-day movie.More modern accounts such as Saving Private Ryan are morevividly realistic, but producer Darryl F. Zanuck's epic 1962 account isthe only one to attempt the daunting task of covering that fateful dayfrom all perspectives. From the German high command and front-lineofficers to the French Resistance and all the key Allied participants,the screenplay by Cornelius Ryan, based on his own authoritative book, is as factuallyaccurate as possible. The endless parade of stars (John Wayne, HenryFonda, Robert Mitchum, Sean Connery, and Richard Burton, to name a few)makes for an uneasy mix of verisimilitude and Hollywood star-power,however, and the film falls a little flat for too much of its three-hour running time. But the set-piece battles are still spectacular, andif the landings on Omaha Beach lack the graphic gore of PrivateRyan they nonetheless show the sheer scale and audacity of theinvasion. --Mark Walker ... Read more

    Reviews (131)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Comparisons are inevitable; they're also unhelpful
    The comparisons are of course between THE LONGEST DAY and SAVING PRIVATE RYAN. The only similarities are: both movies depict the allied landings at Normandy on D-Day, they are tributes to the servicemen of WWII, and most importantly, both are good movies. That said, general comparisons are unhelpful because the realism that made Spielberg's movie so memorable is totally absent from THE LONGEST DAY; for two very good reasons: (1) technically, the capability was unavailable in 1962 and (2) morally, that level of graphic violence would have been unacceptable. Also, Mr Zanuck, as director, did not want to make bloody messes of his numerous stars.

    Realism aside, on its own merits THE LONGEST DAY is a tribute that has stood the test of time. The huge collection of stars (over 40) and the near 3 hour length qualifies it as epic. On an emotional level, it is a patriotic salute to the soldiers who went ashore. With a scope larger than Omaha beach, the focus is not exclusively American; the movie depicts the role of the British, and other allied troops, as well as the work of the French resistance. German dialogue is subtitled to add some realism. Perhaps the best aspect of the movie is that as an adaptation of Cornelius Ryan's book of the same name, it is based on a historically accurate account of the battle.

    For realism, patriotism, and a sentimental heroic story, only partially based on real events of D-Day, watch SAVING PRIVATE RYAN. For an old fashioned, "clean" war movie based on history with good acting (Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchum, John Wayne, Curt Jurgens) watch THE LONGEST DAY. Better yet, view both, just don't spoil the experience with a lot of comparisons.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Longest View
    Unlike Saving Private Ryan, The Longest Day was filmed to dramatize the true, unfolding story of the invasion of France beginning several days before the invasion, which was documented for all time by journalist Cornelius Ryan. Ryan did something few historians have successfully accomplished since the end of the war. He compiled thousands of interviews and wrote a realistic account of the invasion which reads like a suspense and action novel. The movie seeks to combine many characters taken from Ryan's book, and is therefore fiction as well as history, but it is masterfully done and is otherwise true to history. Stereotypes of incompetent German officers and troops, so common in film and television of the early 1960's was not a problem in this movie, nor is the graphic violence of Private Ryan observable. The true story is the focus of the movie, and it was made primarily for veterans who had seen the real violence and had fought tough, intellegent and brave Germans, and had no need to be reminded of those horrors. They did have a desire to see their sacrifices and trials acknowledged alongside the background of historical context. It is a gripping movie. A side note for those who might want to compare The Longest Day with Saving Private Ryan. These should compliment each other, not be compared with each other. The audience for The Longest Day was primarily the veterans, their peers and children. The audience or Saving Private Ryan is primarily the grandchildren of the veterans, young people who are in the main, quite ignorant of history. There is no doubt that Saving Private Ryan is more accurate a portayal of historical American and German weapons and villages, but this was not even attempted in the Longest Day. If you will read The Longest Day before watching Saving Private Ryan, you will see that the sites and sounds remembered by many of the interviewed veterans who were at Omaha and Utah beaches somehow happened at the same time and place in Saving Private Ryan. That makes Saving Private Ryan as inaccurate for what it shows, as is The Longest Day, for what it doesn't show. Both movies are excellent, and both are moving.

    2-0 out of 5 stars IT HAS NOT STOOD THE TEST OF TIME
    Director Darryl F. Zanuck tried his best with the technical resources at his dispostition at the time and using the narrative standar for epic movies of that time. But watching this movie today is a really act of courage. It drags and drags, the three hours seem to never end. Also, even if they tried to give a view of the global situation, they failed miserably.

    The movie is an endless sequence of shell and fire sounds, a really pain. I simply don't like the movie, although I understand what they tried to do.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Only a Partial View of D-Day and Operation Overlord
    Although this film is certainly worth watching, the viewer who has little idea of what Operation Overlord was about won't learn very much about it. Of course, we see many examples of heroism, but so much was left out that one can easily get a distorted view of things.
    (1) Contrary to the impression that the Hollywood movie industry gives, the Americans and British did not defeat Germany alone. Three-quarters of the strength of the German Wehrmacht was destroyed by the Soviet Union. I realize that this film was made a the height of the cold war, but still some mention should have been made of their contribution to victory.
    (2) The most impressive part of Overlord were the meticulous preparations made. Some mention of it was made, but more of it should have been shown, such as the various special weapons and ships that were made to ease the assault on the fortified beaches. Archive film could have been easily procured to show the various devices used to clear mine fields and barbed wire.
    Most crucial was the development of the "Mulberry" artificial ports.
    (3) This film used several Germans as advisors such as Blumentritt who were in the Wehrmacht High Command. They use this film as a vehicle for pushing the now largely discredited line that "if only Hitler had let the Generals run the war, they would have won it for him", and the also the myth that they opposed Hitler and held nothing but contempt for him (von Rundstedt calls Hitler "that Bohemian Corporal" in the film). In reality they were all very loyal to him and they really strongly supported him and his criminal policies when they were winning the war.
    (4) The importance of the deception campaign making the Germans think the assault will be at the Pas de Calais and not a Normandy was very important and continued even after the landing on D-Day to make the Germans think Normandy was just a diversion.
    This was not mentioned. A whole "virtual army" was created with fake radio traffic opposite Calais. This could have been shown as well.
    (5) Although I have nothing personal against the man, John Wayne is a very poor actor and I have no idea where he got his reputation as one of Hollywood's leading men!

    1-0 out of 5 stars The Longest Movie
    I watched on June 6th 2004 "The Longest Day" to learn about D-Day June 6th in 1944. In general it was a painfully boring movie. I accomplished my goal of learning about D-Day, but it was at a cost of wasting about three hours of my life. It is my belief that this story could have been told in one and a half hours instead of three. ... Read more


    11. Citizen Kane (Two-Disc Special Edition)
    Director: Orson Welles
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    Average Customer Review: 4.17 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (499)

    5-0 out of 5 stars What else is left to say?
    This is the greatest American film ever made, as entertaining as it is revolutionary.

    When it was made, Orson Welles tackled a seemingly simple topic, a reflection back on a dead man's search for love and happiness in his life, and made a film that's epic in scope, gorgeous in its visual execution, brilliantly written, incredibly acted.

    All in all, it's inspiring to filmmakers looking for a great debut film from a new director. "Citizen Kane" also works for regular moviegoers just looking for a good drama.

    Using interviews with all his closest friends and colleagues, Welles uses flashback to create a portrait of the life of millionaire media magnate Charles Foster Kane. Kane was, in conflicting accounts of those who knew him, a man of great character and potential or a wealthy, cold, manipulative scoundrel.

    What, if anything, can be learned about the man from his last word? What does "Rosebud" mean?

    The answer makes for good mystery, and it leads the viewer to ask key questions about what defines our lives and gives them meaning.

    This film is fantastic, one that should be watched once a year to help you keep perspective on life.

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of the Best.
    Even after sixty years, CITIZEN KANE remains as one of the greatest movies of all time. Though it is true that some are bored by the movie because it's "just a boring black-and-white movie with no action", those who hold that opinion are in the minority. KANE is often held as the pinnacle of filmmaking by movie buffs not just because of the advances the movie made in film production, but also because it set the standard that all filmmakers wish to reach: the total director's vision; a movie made with total control and no studio intervention. With that said, what does KANE hold for the average film-goer? The movie has an excellent script (it won an Oscar), great acting, and a haunting score. The story, though loosely based on the life of William Randolph Hearst, is an old one: powerful man starts out promising and full of ideals, becomes consumed by greed and looses his vision, and ends up loosing it all (anyone read MacBeth or ALL THE KING'S MEN?). Overall, a deeply penetrating and thinking movie that film buffs usually love and that most everyone else will at least enjoy if they don't mind a strong drama filmed in black and white.

    5-0 out of 5 stars AFI got this one right
    Can you imagine what the perception of RKO was at the time they made this decision? Let's see, how about we give complete control of a major film to a twenty five year old radio voice with zero film experience (whose claim to fame was scaring the life out of the public with a fake story about aliens landing on earth) and even better, let him staff the movie with actors who have little to no screen experience. On top of that, we'll let it become one of the most controversial pictures of its time because it mirrors the life of one of the biggest names in America today. Why, it may never be able to be released because of the lawsuits-- Great idea!

    I have just described Citizen Kane. All of the above is true, which makes the fact that it is possibly the greatest film in American Film History even more amazing. Everything is perfect. The script (which Welles co-wrote), the actors (all relative unknowns except Welles and Joseph Cotton), the special effects (listen to Roger Ebert's Commentary on this special edition for details) and finally, the makeup-- You won't believe how great a job they do making 25 year old Welles look 60.

    As for the story, it's done in a most interesting fashion. Charles Foster Kane (Welles) dies at the very beginning of the movie and utters his famous last word "Rosebud". A reporter is given the task of finding out just what that one word meant. So he goes and interviews all the people who knew Kane to try to learn the meaning of the word. In the process, we are shown Kane through the eyes of those who knew him. We never see Kane through his own eyes, always what his former associates saw.

    This is interesting, because Kane is a tragic figure as seen by just about everyone. He is unhappy and lonely. We as an audience eventually learn the meaning of Rosebud. I have read reviews that complain that the movie is about this one thing (I won't reveal what it is). But long before we learn the identity of Rosebud, the film has made its point. What is the point? My opinion is that the film shows us basically the worthlessness and despair of materialism. Loving "stuff" or money will ultimately lead to unhappiness.

    By the way, this movie almost was never seen. The man I spoke of at the beginning of the review is William Randolph Hearst, former newspaper magnate. He saw too much of himself in the film and sued to squash it. Fortunately he lost. The second disc in the set is a two hour documentary on this topic. It is also excellent and well worth a viewing.

    One last thing. Although this movie has been ranked on the AFI list as number one American movie of all time, it did NOT win Best Picture in 1941. That film? "How Green was my Valley"

    4-0 out of 5 stars Review of Review
    The best review of Citizen Kane - perhaps of any film - I've ever read is the one titled "Narrative and Eye Disconnect" posted by "A viewer from Richmond, VA USA" on March 21, 2004. I recommend searching through Amazon's reviews to find it, then watching Citizen Kane and re-reading that review. Even though the reviewer gives Kane just one star, s/he writes with great insight into the movie and cinema in general, and has enhanced my appreciation of Citizen Kane exponentially. Thank you, "Viewer from Richmond," whoever you are!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Works on the basic levels as well as artistically
    So many of the films that critics unanimously pick as the greatest of all time are overrated, confusing, ponderous, overly symbolic art pieces that leave viewers scratching their heads. The collective reaction is, "What in the hell was the director smoking?" Arty camera work and tons of symbolism and metaphors can never take the place of good acting, solid direction and, most importantly, a good script.

    Much has been made of Citizen Kane's technical brilliance -- Welles' use of overlapping conversations, Gregg Toland's deep focus photography, set design that incorporates ceilings, etc. However, none of this would really mean anything if the film didn't have a great story and screenplay. Citizen Kane may be a triumph in filmmaking technique, but it is also a deeply engrossing story with characters we can relate to and sympathize with. Welles' Kane is a selfish, unhappy, overly controlling dictator who has everything and yet still manages to make himself more and more unhappy. Most of us know the feeling of not appreciating someone or something good in our lives until he/she/it is gone. We see the promise and idealism in Kane's early life, like him and believe, as Joseph Cotten's Jed Leland does, that Kane is a great man who can do so much good in society. As Kane's life progresses, however, he becomes more and more bitter, alienates everyone who cares about him and dies alone, longing for the simplicity of his early life before he became wealthy. When Kane, as an old man, loses control when his second wife Susan Alexander (Dorothy Comingore) leaves him, we can't help but feel for him -- even though most or all of his unhappiness is his fault. That the audience feels such empathy for such a flawed character is Citizen Kane's greatest triumph and is the true basis for Kane's reputation as one of the greatest films of all time. ... Read more


    12. What Dreams May Come
    Director: Vincent Ward
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    Catlog: DVD
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    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


    13. The Matrix
    Director: Andy Wachowski, Larry Wachowski
    list price: $19.96
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    Average Customer Review: 4.46 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com essential video

    By following up their debut thriller Bound with the 1999 box-office smash The Matrix, the codirecting Wachowski brothers--Andy and Larry--annihilated any suggestion of a sophomore jinx, crafting one of the most exhilarating sci-fi/action movies of the 1990s. Set in the not too distant future in an insipid, characterless city, we find a young man named Neo (Keanu Reeves). A software techie by day and a computer hacker by night, he sits alone at home by his monitor, waiting for a sign, a signal--from what or whom he doesn't know--until one night, a mysterious woman named Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss) seeks him out and introduces him to that faceless characterhe has been waiting for: Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne). A messiah of sorts, Morpheus presents Neo with the truth about his world by shedding light on the dark secrets that have troubled him for so long: "You've felt it your entire life, that there's something wrong with the world. You don't know what it is, but it's there, like a splinter in your mind, driving you mad." Ultimately, Morpheus illustrates to Neo what the Matrix is--a reality beyond reality that controls all of their lives, in a way that Neo can barely comprehend.

    Neo thus embarks on an adventure that is both terrifying and enthralling. Pitted against an enemy that transcends human concepts of evil, Morpheus and his team must train Neo to believe that he is the chosen champion of their fight. With mind-boggling, technically innovative special effects and a thought-provoking script that owes a debt of inspiration to the legacy of cyberpunk fiction, this is much more than an out-and-out action yarn; it's a thinking man's journey into the realm of futuristic fantasy, a dreamscape full of eye candy that will satisfy sci-fi, kung fu, action, and adventure fans alike. Although the film is headlined by Reeves andFishburne--who both turn in fine performances--much of the fun and excitement should be attributed to Moss, who flawlessly mixes vulnerability with immense strength, making other contemporary female heroines look timid by comparison. And if we were going to cast a vote for most dastardly movie villain of 1999, it would have to go to Hugo Weaving, who plays the feckless, semipsychotic Agent Smith with panache and edginess. As the film's box-office profits soared, the Wachowski brothers announced that The Matrix is merely the first chapter in a cinematically dazzling franchise--a chapter that is arguably superior to the other sci-fi smash of 1999 (you know... the one starring Jar Jar Binks).--Jeremy Storey ... Read more

    Reviews (2882)

    5-0 out of 5 stars What is the Matrix?
    The Matrix will go down in film history books as "The film that changed cinema forever". True, films have done that before: (Jaws, Star Wars, Jurassic Park, Pulp Fiction et al) but the Matrix is different in that not only did it change audience's expectations of action cinema but also impacted on countless movies to date.

    The film itself is the epitome of cool that stands out from the slew of unimaginative science fiction that Hollywood reels out, and with Keanu Reeves and Carrie Anne Moss making an unlikely duo in a post-apocalyptic world ruled by artificially intelligent machines, the film finds itself worlds away from admittedly second-rate sci fi cinema.

    You could argue, as some critics did, that the film's plot is simply an excuse to hang cool effects on, but the premise slowly shapes into such an intricate plot, where machines have taken over the world (a popular idea for sci fi films, with this having similarities to Terminator 2) and then the small amount of snotty critics are silenced. What the Wachowski brothers have done is so imaginative that no film has ever come close to its intricacies and futuristic ideas. Add hints and nudges from Vertigo, classic Western films and Kung-fu karate films into the story and the amazing journey is made even more fascinating and involving.

    The visuals incorporated throughout the story are absolutely amazing; with the "flow-mo" being the coolest visual effect those effects boffins have done since that water tentacle flowed through air in The Abyss. Imitated to death, the scene where Keanu's character Neo dodges bullets is nonetheless the pinnacle of uber-coolness. With thought provoking, mind-bending lines like: "It's the smell, if there is such a thing"; the film's script is peppered with fascinating lines concerning the very nature of "what is real?" Hence the clever advertising campaign for the movie's release: "Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is, you have to see it for yourself".

    The Matrix has indeed changed cinema. Regardless, it's a great film, loaded to the retinas with out- of- this-world effects, great villians (Agent Smith!), great action set-pieces and awesome stunts from martial arts expert Wu Ping. And with the DVD (awesome stuff, everyone has to own this disc) and upcoming sequel in progress- The Matrix Reloaded, the Matrix is a film that not only has affected filmgoers everywhere, but has also leaked into the fan boy culture of the movie world. To quote Neo: "Whoa".

    5-0 out of 5 stars A dynamic and intelligent triumph
    A stunning blend of action and science fiction, "The Matrix" tells the tale of a computer programmer who stumbles into an alternate world that forever changes his perception of reality. There's a reason why "The Matrix" won a pile of awards (and made a pile of money at the box office). A masterpiece of technical wizardry and storytelling skill, this is one of those memorable films that succeeds on every one of its many ambitious levels.

    Fans and critics have raved about the film's mind-blowing special effects and fight scenes, but they are only part of the film's excellence. The superb performances of the actors are equally important. Particularly noteworthy is Laurence Fishburne's as Morpheus--his is a performance of controlled but passionate intensity. And Carrie-Anne Moss' performance as Trinity brings to the film a tenderness and humanity which greatly complement the high-tech milieu.

    "The Matrix" is a wonderfully literate film whose dialogue includes references from Greek mythology, the Bible, Christian theology, and English literature. And one of the central themes of the film--the defiant resistance to an enslaving force--is one that can be found in many of the world's great works of literature. Watch "The Matrix," and then read the 1845 classic "Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave"--you'll appreciate the film even more.

    5-0 out of 5 stars very good
    very good action, acting, plot, and dvd. much better than the dissapointing reloaded. haven't seen revolutions.

    5-0 out of 5 stars "Why oh why didn't I take the BLUE pill?"
    After hearing so many good things about this film, I was actually underwhelmed the first time I saw it. I already new the basic premise so it wasn't a surprise to me. It wasn't until the SECOND time I saw it that it really hit me. Very well written, with some philosophical underpinnings hidden throughout, the Matrix is a smart sci-fi action film -- but not TOO smart: that would have to wait until The Matrix Reloaded (which is so dense it's hard to understand what's going on with just one viewing).

    5-0 out of 5 stars mind-blowing special effects
    LOVE ALL 3 MOVIES SO DAMM MUCH. ALL HATES GO AWAY AND YOU'RE SO STUPID AND UGLY CAN'T WATCH THESE MOVIES. BYE BYEEEE!!!!! ... Read more


    14. Star Wars Ewok Adventures - Caravan of Courage (aka The Ewok Adventure) / The Battle for Endor
    Director: Ken Wheat, Jim Wheat
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    Asin: B0002YCUR0
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    15. The Matrix Revolutions (Widescreen Edition)
    Director: Larry Wachowski, Andy Wachowski
    list price: $19.96
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    Asin: B0001BKAEY
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    Average Customer Review: 3.32 out of 5 stars
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    Description

    Provocative Futuristic Action Thriller.The Matrix Revolutions marks the final explosive chapter in the Matrix trilogy. ... Read more

    Reviews (887)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Part 3: It was Inevitable...
    Neither Part-2 or Part-3 matched the brilliance of the original "Matrix". It was inevitable - the Wachowski brothers simply couldn't do it. With that said, "Revolutions" was better than "Reloaded"... but that's not saying much. It was better as a movie overall, but it didn't have a truly memorable action scene that left you sitting on the edge of your seat (i.e. the freeway chase scene in "Reloaded", or the top of building helicopter crash scene in the original "Matrix"). There were times in "Revolutions" where Neo just disappeared - at one time it was for over 30 minutes. Trinity disappeared numerous times and I often wondered where these main characters had gone. Too much time was spent with characters in Zion that I didn't care about (like Link & Zee... what did they bring to the movie?). "Revolutions" needed more Neo, more Morpheus, more Trinity, and more Agent Smith. Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne. Carrie-Anne Moss, and Hugo Weaving are all wonderful actors... and they simply were not on the screen enough. The computer-generated special effects were great, but the story-line, action, and dialogue (monotone and so very emotionless) was simply sub-par. The final battle scene between Neo and Agent Smith flying around in the rain between tall buildings was down-right comical. I loved Trinity in the first "Matrix", but that lessened in Part-2 and in I found myself in Part-3 thinking her death scene just dragged on way too long. The entire ending to the movie was pure cheese. The success of the great trilogies like "Lord Of The Rings", "Indiana Jones" and the original "Star Wars" is so hard to come by these days in Hollywood. The original "Matrix" will forever be the best of the series (should they have stopped at this one?). Replay value = Next to none.

    4-0 out of 5 stars a letdown from the first 2.
    well if you like bullets,lasers and explosions,this one is for you.problem is,thats it too.they go to the central core of whats holding the computer world together and rage war on it.then these millions and millions of robotic squid things come out.theres a big bunch of shooting and boom boom boom.the end.its too violent for kids i think.it seems as though they spent so much money on the squids,they forgot a storyline or anything else that goes with a movie.just boom boom boom.outof the 3,it basicly just wraps the first two up.in the first 2,there were stories,chicks,plots,scenes,and places.this had a dark place filled with squids.of the 3,this one is a distant 3rd.if you like sci fi and action youll love this one.this one black chick does some awesome pilot work in one of the movies most exiting parts.the hype was better than the movie actualy turned out to be.not to discredit it though as an excellent movie.this is keeono.uuuuhhhhhhh.....teds third best movie ever.ill give you one guess what the other two are.the trilogy ends here.it is a bit long,but good.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Brilliantly Written, overly special-effected
    I would give this movie 4.5 stars if I could, but I can't. It like The Matrix Reloaded wasn't quite as good as the original, but still is a brilliantly written and important piece of sci-fi literature. Although it starts out directly where Reloaded leaves off, the situation is completely understandable and not confusing to a non-Matrix person. Like the others, its soundtrack of classical music with a blend of rock gives a nice feel.

    Mind-boggling conversations between characters sieze to get old and Keanu Reaves gives his best preformance in the trilogy. It ends strangely, with Buddhist-Christian philosophies that balnket the sad ending with a happy, touching feel.

    My only problem with this film is that the battle scenes are to elongated, and after a while become tedious, and just blurres of flashing light and loud noises.

    Overall, I thought this was a great ending chapter to a science-fiction masterpiece.

    2-0 out of 5 stars And then there were three...
    The first Matrix movie was revolutionary at the time. In retrospect, almost frustratingly so(I'm sure we're all tired of directors trying to impress us with bullet speed special effects). However, I enjoyed it. It was good science fiction, and the premise was interesting.

    Now, in the second Matrix, it was painfully obvious that the directors were thinking throughout the entire process "man, in the first movie, they liked it when we did this. So lets do it A LOT!" However, despite a weak first hour, and a lackluster ending, it still eeked out an hour of entertainment (especially the incredible car chase scene).

    And here, the last arrives, and it is not a good thing. They stopped trying to hide the fact that they were ripping off the first two movies. You see Neo fight Smith, start losing, get kicked into a wall, dramatic music plays, Smith looks triumphant. Neo gets up, Smith looks startled, Neo brushes himself on, and does a kung fu move to say "bring it on".

    That doesn't sound familiar AT ALL, does it?

    I was almost chuckling at the absurdity of it. It looked like they were trying to duplicate the lobby scene of the first film, only have it with programs who walk ON THE CEILING! The movie tries, and fails to be cerebral. The first film kept it more down to earth, and later on, it tried adding the mystical aspects to the approach, and it fails. And the ending is frustrating in itsself, only serving to remind those of us who didn't pick it up that Neo is supposed to be a Christ-figure.

    I won't get started on the acting... basically, this film loses all acting, plot, or originality that the first had, and the second had to a lesser extent. This is the lowest wrung of a series which got worse at each attempt. I'm not giving it 1 star just because there are a few action scenes and plot points that aren't COMPLETELY contrived. But not many. I can't recommend this film.

    3-0 out of 5 stars It was decent
    When I first saw this on an IMAX screen, it was intense - I had to look away several times to avoid being overwhelmed by the images. And I can't say as how I enjoyed it - I loved how the first movie dealt with the transformation of the reality of the matrix and how the second one told more about how the matrix came to be (except that whole dancing/sex scene - that was just weird). The third one I had higher hopes for. I thought maybe that the movie makers would explain why the machines allowed zion to exist. I thought there was a chance that it would turn out with zion being a second matrix on top of the first and so no one was ever really free from the machines. Now that would have been mindblowing if they had done it right.

    All in all, if you ignore the first and second movies and put this movie on its own, it's pretty good (though it doesn't have too much character development) and it's a very good hollywood action movie. Put with the first two movies and it doesn't quite measure up. ... Read more


    16. The Sound of Music (Single Disc Full Screen Edition)
    Director: Robert Wise
    list price: $19.98
    our price: $14.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000067J1P
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 181
    Average Customer Review: 4.65 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (337)

    5-0 out of 5 stars The happiest sound in its best version yet!
    Reviled by some, beloved by many, consistently referred to as the most popular movie musical ever made, THE SOUND OF MUSIC more than fulfills the promise of its beautiful visuals and expert song numbers on home video via DVD. This edition tops the 1995 laserdisc by allowing the sparkling, exemplary design of its 70mm. Todd-AO frame to be exhibited with increased sharpness and resolution. The 4.1 Dolby Digital soundtrack is powerful and clean, but since this film was originally mixed for six-track magnetic stereo, it's curious why the effort wasn't made by Fox to split the surrounds! Nonethless, the film sounds terrific. The extra features make this package a bargain at the price. Full length commentary by director Bob Wise, with the musical numbers presented sans vocals, is a great touch. And the two documentaries are beautifully presented; full of facts and bits of arcane information that any fan will truly enjoy. A great movie, and a great DVD rendition. More like this, PLEASE!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful!!! One of the Best Musicals Ever Made!!!
    First of all, I'd like to confess that I've probably watched this movie more than one hundred times in my lifetime.

    "The Sound of Music" is such a popular movie that people can't enough of making fun of it, which is understandable: I mean, a nun, seven children, songs by Rodgers and Hammerstein, and Austrian landscape. In reality, most of these people probably haven't sat down and watched this movie, because it is an absolutely unforgettable experience.

    Julie Andrews is absolutely magical as Maria. When she runs on the mountaintop and starts singing the famous lyrics "The hills are alive...," it sends chills down my spine to this day. Christopher Plummer cuts a good figure as the captain but gave a rather stiff performance: he doesn't bring anything extra to the role. Eleanor Parker, as the Baroness, was wasted--a role like that was far beneath her talents. But the children were all wonderful, especially Charmian Carr who was charming as Liesl.

    This movie is ultrasentimental and proud of it. But I'll stick with this rather than some of those one-dimensional slasher flicks which are in fashion these days. It has a plausible story, some of the world's most remembered songs, and the glorious Austrian and Swiss Alps in the background. Overall, I can't say anything other than I loved it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Hills Are Alive...Now and Forever
    No matter how many times you've seen this 1965 musicalization of the 1959 stage classic, it's still a joy to behold. For me, there are many reasons. On location filming in Saltzburg heightens the story's magnitude. The casting of Julie Andrews as Maria Von Trapp was a coup for both 20th Century Fox and director Robert Wise. She's magnificent and ever so professional. Back then, this was only her third Hollywood movie. But she's a pro from start to finish. Everything she does it fraught with such emotion and conviction, you'd swear she was Maria Von Trapp. Opening up the stage play with several new scenes, sub plots, songs, characters and dialogue also benefits what could have been a very sticky situation. Finally, there's the DVD itself. This is the widescreen version that was shown back in theaters when the film first opened. It includes the intermission and the Act II opening music. With no formatting for television, you get to see everything in all it's technicolor glory. On video, half the Von Trapp children didn't fit on the televsion screen. Musical numbers lost there scope as did scenes where you had 13 characters in one room and only saw 7 on the screen. I highly recommend this DVD. But wait, there's more. The 87-minute documentary is awesome. So are segments showing scenes that were cut and up dates on how the kids look today.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Incredible movie, must see, but don't buy the one disc
    First off. Think you have seen the Sound of Music? Well you haven't. I thought I had, many times. Of course it was always around Xmas with the commerical breaks. But that is a much edited version. There are small but significant cuts everywhere in that version. So this is a great thing to have. My 3 stars relates directly to the lack of extras on the one disc. The movie is 5+ stars, but the lack of extras warrants the 3 stars.

    So this is a must buy. Also the commentary is very good here. But given the price for this on Amazon, just buy the 2 set version. I got the one disc version at a very good price so it is not a bad buy. But for $6 more, why not enjoy the double DVD? This is a must get for any movie fan, and if you are not into the extras, by all means buy this one. This movie, like all of Rogers and Hammerstein's work is emotional without ever being fake or sentimental. It is full of sentiment and completely honest sentiment at that, but never sentimentality. It totally puts to SHAME almost every director and producer and writer working in Hollywood today. Complete and total shame and disgrace. Nothing coming out of Hollywood today can hold a candle to this. Entire director's careers with academy awards can't even begin to even compare to just this one movie. So get some version, especially if you have young ones. Sit them down, and let them experience what a real movie can be.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This has been a great thing to share with my daughter.
    I grew up with this video and watched it on TV every year. The songs have always stuck in my head. I even did the Sound of Music Tour when I was in Austria. But now I've got my daughter introduced to this beautiful music. This and the Wizard of Oz are her favorites.

    I bought the easy piano scores for her to play the songs on the piano, and singing lessons on CD "Voice Lessons TO GO", by Vaccarino (They're great and a lot cheaper than private voice lessons!) for her, (even though I use them when she's at school). So she is confident to sing along while she plays her Edelweis and Do a Dear. We love it. ... Read more


    17. The Matrix Reloaded (Widescreen Edition)
    Director: Andy Wachowski, Larry Wachowski
    list price: $19.96
    our price: $14.99
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    Asin: B0000AXE8I
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 641
    Average Customer Review: 3.49 out of 5 stars
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    Description

    In the second chapter of the Matrix trilogy, Neo (Keanu Reeves), Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss) and Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne) continue to lead the revolt against the Machine Army. In their quest to save the human race from extinction, they gain greater insight into the construct of The Matrix and Neo's pivotal role in the fate of mankind. ... Read more

    Reviews (1449)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Only the third film can make it good
    Warning - Spoilers ahead . . .

    When I first saw the film, well, I didn't like it too much. It seemed to be over-packed with CGI Fight scenes and a storyline that didn't really mean anything. While Zion is under attack, Neo, Trinity, and Morpheus must find the keymaster to unlock the doors to the mainframe and end the war, thus freeing Zion.

    This entire storyline, to me, seemed contrived, making the fight scenes seem meeningless, their overzealous and sometimes long running effects just becoming tiresome.

    But, then I got it. Weeks after seeing it, it finally clicked.

    They symbolism of these films is much deeper than the average action-movie viewer is usually given. Yes -- the entire "The One-Saves the world" storyline is meaningless, and that's the point. While paying too much attention to events within the computer-generated fantasy world of the Matrix, the real world, and Zion, fall into greater danger.

    We are introduced to two 'french' characters, programs, which exist simply to experience life. While they are among the long list of villians in this piece, they are also the key to the story. They describe the situation in as much in the film, seeing our heroes as mere puppets in a meaningless plot, which, in fact, they are.

    While are main characters are engaged in a meaningless task, struggling to achieve goal after goal in a virtual world, events of the real world are dire, and, just perhaps, if more attention were paid to the real-world events, perhaps the situation would not be so dire.

    It is not until Neo discovers that his existance as 'the one' is simply another level of control set in place by the machines, that the entire struggle within the virtual world of the Matrix has no real meaning, only then does the truth come to light, just in time for this second chapter to come to a close.

    Think about it, how many people do you know who obsess on politics, or sports, or their favorite television show, or even the Matrix itself? We engage in meaningless struggles to achieve goals that, in the end, really have no meaning but to feed our own ego.

    A very profound statement to be made by an action film, that is, if the third and final installment draws this observation out.

    As I see it, the value of this second episode is entirely dependent upon the content of the third chapter, but the potential is much greater than most people give it credit for.

    Thank you for your time.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Spectacularly average
    "The Matrix" (1999) delivered an engaging mix of Eastern religion, martial arts and digital cool, all wrapped in a story which was as well-written as it was well-told. "Reloaded" gives us more mysticism, though it's less interesting; more fights, though they're less convincing; and more digital trickery, but without a strong narrative to hang it off. The result is a film which feels like a two-hour philosophy lecture you occasionally spice up with a surreptitious burst on your Gameboy. The film's digitized set pieces - Neo's fight with a legion of Agents Smith, and the much-anticipated freeway sequence - are admittedly thrilling, but they try too hard. When will directors realize that the instant characters start looking like Nintendo sprites, the audience completely disengages? There's no spirit in this movie, no heart, and despite the alleged threat to a pretty invulnerable looking Zion, it doesn't feel like anything's really at stake. Neo's climactic meeting with The Architect should have been the film's most compelling moment. The chilling performance from Aussie uber-director Helmut Bakaitis means it almost is, but the dense dialogue and distracting TV screens ensure you'll probably miss the point - ergo, you'll need to see the film again, which guarantees the kind of repeat business on which boxoffice bonanzas are built. But this was never going to be anything but a billion-dollar hit, so I'm surprised the Wachowskis played it so safe. Why stake the film's appeal on some ultimately vacuous and surprisingly transparent digital imagery, when they had the chance to give a captive audience something audaciously original? It's not like they don't have the talent. I went home after seeing this and watched the first film again on DVD - it's so much better it hurts. The strength of the first film and the weakness of the second come down the same thing: the power of the premise. The idea of an illusionary universe and one man's messianic enlightenment is endlessly appealing (and as old as Hinduism). The philosophy of causation, on the other hand, is dense, complex and ultimately paradoxical - and for those reasons terminally boring. That doesn't mean it isn't worth exploring. It just means that the local Cineplex is probably not the best place to have the conversation.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent movie
    The fight scenes were great; the graphics were amazing... the dancing was a bit fluffy (is that all they do down there... well, but, hey, what else is there to do?)... worthy of being the Matrix 2 (but, of course, not even close to beating #1).

    2-0 out of 5 stars Say What?
    If you disengage your brain you might enjoy Elrond of Rivendale by case attacking Neo in his Priest's get up, but by the time, you are skirting dangerous toward brain burnout! I have watched it several times, thinking maybe it was the mood I was in, but nope. Matrix was a mind-blowing one-trick-pony that just did not stretch into to a second movie well. There are a lot of interesting scenes, but Neo aka up up and away, just brought a giggle out in me. The LONG action sequences make you want to go okay, enough! Less is More is NOT the banner of this movie! After Neo b**** slap's Elrond and his brother Elrond and his other brother Elrond 100 times it just redefines redundant. Then Neo reaching in to pull out the magic bullet...oh, please...sigh...and the religious overtones are so pretensious.

    It was good to see Anthony Zerbe a long under rated talent get a nice spot. The effect are good, just overdone ad nauseoum. Elrond take the ship to into the West quickly!

    3-0 out of 5 stars Surpasses Reloaded but falls quite short of the original...
    I absolutely loved the original Matrix. I still do. It got me thinking about things I'd never considered all that seriously, such as the potential negative implications of artificial intelligence and ultra-sophisticated technology. I was also drawn to the philosophical issues it raised, and I was motivated to learn more about the ideas presented in the story. For me, no other film has held such strong intellectual appeal. I've watched the DVD an embarrassing number of times. I've never grown tired of it.

    When I learned that two more Matrix films were in the works, I was overjoyed. Unfortunately, my joy came to an abrupt halt when I saw Reloaded. I fully admit that my high expectations contributed to my disappointment, but that certainly doesn't account for all of it. Among other things, Reloaded is so top-heavy with bombast and claptrap that I actually stopped caring about the characters and had no further interest in what might happen. I definitely don't enjoy these kinds of feelings.

    I wanted so much to like Reloaded that I actually saw it several times hoping I'd missed a crucial element, or that it would grow on me, or *something*. But it continued to leave such a bad taste in my mouth that I had no desire to see Revolutions.

    As luck would have it, however, I recently had an opportunity to rent Revolutions for practically nothing -- so out of curiosity, I went for it. I'm glad I did, because it helped redeem the overall trilogy for me, although not as much as I would have liked. The only expectation I brought to Revolutions was that it couldn't possibly be worse than Reloaded. Luckily it isn't, but it still can't touch the original.

    One of the other reviewers has mentioned that an indefinable "something" is missing from Revolutions. Well, I can identify at least three things that are absent from this film: a plot, convincing dialog, and decent acting (with one exception, which I'll get to momentarily). I also discovered that Revolutions essentially has no human stars, despite the presence of Reeves, Fishburne, Moss, et al. The only true stars of this film are its special effects.

    Granted, the effects are spectacular. The battle for Zion is a feat of CGI splendor -- although I would have appreciated it more had it been shorter. It's almost like the Wachowskis are trying to compensate for the film's shortcomings by clobbering the audience with protracted high-tech eye candy.

    I was relieved that there aren't many hand-to-hand (or should I say foot-to-head?) combat scenes in Revolutions. There are only so many ways to kick a bad guy in the face, and I got more than my fill of such things in Reloaded.

    Of the fight sequences that *are* in Revolutions, I found the super-duper burly brawl between Smith and Neo -- in the rain, no less -- to be cartoonish and silly. It was almost as bad as the "Trinity crashes through a window and repeatedly shoots at an agent while falling about a million stories toward the pavement" sequence in Reloaded.

    Revolutions also continued the nonsensical double-talk so prevalent in Reloaded. I'm sure it's meant to sound profound, but to me, it only sounds foolish. "Why are you here?" "Because I choose to be." "What are you going to do?" "What I need to do." "What's going to happen?" "What's meant to happen." (Where's a wall that I can smash my head into?) Both Reloaded and Revolutions perfected the art of answering questions without answering them.

    And what's with all of the endless squabbling in Zion, which started in Reloaded and continues in Revolutions? You'd think that people who have so much at stake would learn to work together more harmoniously and effectively. Instead, they engage sniping, whining, cursing, yelling, tantrums, petty jealousies, and head-butting. This became so tedious that I stopped caring whether or not Zion and its residents would survive.

    Be that as it may, I consider Revolutions to be a worthy diversion if taken at face value. Any meaningful philosophical underpinnings vanished for me after the original Matrix. I approached Revolutions with the intent of trying not to think too much and just going wherever it wanted to take me. On that level, I feel it succeeds.

    The one character I thoroughly enjoyed throughout all three films is Agent Smith. In Revolutions, I love the way Hugo Weaving pulls out all the stops and chews the scenery with such diabolical glee. In contrast, the other characters are merely boring. In some places, they're boring and irritating.

    As other reviewers have noted, Revolutions ends in a way that leaves a back door open for a fourth Matrix film. Well, I have something to say to the Brothers Wachowski about that, starting with some hokey dialog that they, themselves wrote: "Everything that has a beginning has an end." (Naaah...really?) For me, the Matrix ended after the first film. That's where it should have stopped. Please don't make it worse by grinding out a fourth installment. Let it end now.

    Meanwhile, since "cookies need love like everything else does," I'll be doing my part. I love cookies. ... Read more


    18. Earth 2 - The Complete Series
    list price: $49.98
    our price: $34.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0009JE6G6
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 530
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (2)

    5-0 out of 5 stars An Excellent, But Short-lived Sci-Fi TV Series
    Michael Duggan, Carol Flint, Mark Levin and Billy Ray created an interesting concept for a new sci-fi TV program.Airing in the fall of 1994, their show was entitled "Earth 2" and was set 200 years in the future."Earth 2" painted a very dark future for mankind in which the Earth is no longer capable of supporting terrestrial life.Consequently, the surviving members of the human race have been living in orbiting space stations; but living in the sterile environments has created a sickness called the Syndrome.A wealthy woman named Devon Adair (Debrah Farentino) is convinced that the key to mankind's survival, including her Syndrome-infected son Ulysses 'Uly' Adair (Joey Zimmerman), is to once again live in a natural environment.Gathering 250 other Syndrome-infected families, she pursues the establishment of a colony on a planet named G889 orbiting a star 22 light-years away; but the current government has other plans for planet G889. Undeterred, Devon, her son and some of the other 250 families embark on a ship named "Eden Advance" for G889 to establish a community in advance of the main colonization; but the ship has been sabotaged.The ship arrives at G889, but the ship soon explodes.Stranded on G889, the ship's survivors attempt to settle and begin new lives on G889.The survivors include Devon, Uly, engineer John Danziger (Clancy Brown), his daughter True (J. Madison Wright), pilot Alonzo Solace (Antonio Sabato Jr.), Dr. Julia Heller (Jessica Steen), Earth-government representative Morgan Martin (John Gegenhuber), his wife Bess (Rebecca Gayheart) and Uly's cyborg teacher Yale (Sullivan Walker).

    Unfortunately, lower than expected ratings for the series caused its cancellation after its first season; so only a total of 22 episodes were ever produced. These episodes include the following:

    1. "First Contact (1)".The embarkation to G889, destruction of the ship and survivors reaching the planet's surface.G889 is inhabited by subterranean natives called Terrians.

    2. "First Contact (2)".Uly is abducted by Terrians, but he is returned after they heal him from they Syndrome.

    3. "The Man Who Fell to Earth (Two)". An astronaut who had previously crash-landed on G889, Gaal (Tim Curry), kills the commander (Richard Bradford).Solace has Terrian dreams.

    4. "Life Lessons". Gaal tries to disrupt the survivors' encampment.

    5. "Promises, Promises".Gaal abducts several Terrians; but the colonists free them. Gaal disappears underground and is never seen again.

    6. "A Memory Play".The colonists discover a third escape pod with people infected by a woman that had been implanted by the government to sabotage the ship.Grendler saliva is the cure.

    7. "Water". Devon & Dazinger search for water.

    8. "The Church of Morgan". Morgan & Bess argue while Dr. Heller contemplates removing Uly's pineal gland; but Uly is becoming an evolutionary link with the Terrians.

    9. "The Enemy Within". Dr. Heller injects some of Uly's DNA into herself, she goes nuts and is abandoned.

    10. "Redemption". Dr. Heller rejoins the colonists thanks to Solace.

    11. "Moon Cross". A woman, Mary (Kelli Williams), is found living among the Terrians, who want Uly to be their link with colonists.

    12. "Better Living Through Morganite (1)". As Yale regains his memory, Morgan finds glowing rocks.

    13. "Better Living Through Morganite (2)".Mary saves Yale from Terrian punishment after he's been captured (along with Morgan and Bess) and finds out he's not a criminal.

    14. "Grendlers in the Myst". The colonists believe they have located a killer, but he's only the son of the real killer that's now only a hologram.

    15. "The Greatest Love Story Never Told". Danzinger comes across a colony of reformed criminals

    16. "Brave New Pacifica". Two scavenging Grendlers come across a box containing human blood.

    17. "After the Thaw". Dazinger is possessed by a an evil Terrian's spirit.

    18. "The Boy Who Would be Terrian King". A future version of Uly travels back in time to have Devon hide some his blood.

    19. "Survival of the Fittest".Several colonists start to act strange after consuming a Grendler when they are stranded.

    20. "All About Eve".Dying from a mysterious disease, the colonists find a crashed ship from 100 years ago whose computer may explain the cure.

    21. "Natural Born Grendlers". Solace gets depressed about being marooned while Devon & Bess trade for supplies with a friendly Grendler.

    22. "Flower Child".Dazinger & Bess have strange symptoms after being sprayed with a native plant's pollen.

    Overall, I rate "Earth 2-The Complete Series" with 5 out of 5 stars. It's a shame that this show was not given sufficient opportunity to continue past its first and only season.

    5-0 out of 5 stars G889 on DVD at last!
    Long-awaited by fans to come to home video, Earth 2 chronicles the first months of survival for a small party of human colonizers stranded on what seems to be an ideal terraform world.Emerging from a mildly dystopian, bureaucratic, and ecologically disastrous future in which much of humanity has moved onto space stations, this planet - G889, or "Earth 2" - is a veritable Shangri-La.Sabotaged by a manipulative orbiting government, however, the crew is faced with a paranoid landscape in which they cannot trust each other at first, or the initial appearance of G889. Some of these colonists intended to make landfall on the planet, others didn't, and none of them anticipated the trials they would face from the planet, from each other, and from a distant but subtly menacing Earth.They must form a cooperative band to not only survive, but acclimate to this strange planet while trekking to the site of their planned advance colony before a large colony ship arrives.

    After a decade in which the only available copies of these 21 episodes were those recorded from the original (and occasional syndication) broadcasts, and after recent petitioning by a dedicated core of fans, Earth 2 finally comes to DVD.Though not inherently creative (many of the show's aliens, incidents and general plot themes could be found throughout science fiction literature and films), Earth 2 did weave together disparate fiction conventions in unique and often charming ways to produce a literal wagon train in the stars.Underlying themes of environmentalism, indigenous rights, female empowerment, and repentance, though, added a substance to what might have otherwise been a bland, repetitive imitation of other science fiction.Although occasionally hokey and even melodramatic (i.e., time-lapse cloud footage and poor music video-quality "dreamscape" scenes do degrade the show at times), this short-run series remained entertaining, consistent, and resonant to real-world issues; it continues to be on the eve of its return to television via this 3-disc DVD set.The set is likely scant on extra features, as the series was filmed before making-of specials for television shows had become the ubiquitous smorgasbord DVD consumers have come to expect on current series' releases.However, the episodes alone are worth the purchase.

    Fans of more recent television series, such as "Firefly" (though Earth 2 admittedly lacks the verbal wit and relative sophistication of Joss Wedon's sci-fi series), may enjoy giving these discs a spin.Readers of Niven's "Ringworld" series or Robinson's "Mars" series may also be interested in giving Earth 2 a try. ... Read more


    19. The Sopranos - The Complete First Five Seasons
    list price: $499.92
    our price: $321.99
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    Asin: B0007YMVY2
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 5579
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    The Sopranos, writer-producer-director David Chase's extraordinary television series, is nominally an urban gangster drama, but its true impact strikes closer to home, chronicling a dysfunctional, suburban American family in bold relief. And for protagonist Tony Soprano, there's the added complexity posed by heading twin families, his collegial mob clan and his own, nouveau riche brood. The series' brilliant first season is built around what Tony learns when, whipsawed between those two worlds, he finds himself plunged into depression and seeks psychotherapy--a gesture at odds with his midlevel capo's machismo, yet instantly recognizable as a modern emotional test. With analysis built into the very spine of the show's elaborate episodic structure, creator Chase and his formidable corps of directors, writers, and actors weave an unpredictable series of parallel and intersecting plot arcs that twist from tragedy to farce to social realism. While creating for a smaller screen, they enjoy a far larger canvas than a single movie would afford, and the results, like the very best episodic television, attain a richness and scope far closer to a novel than movies normally get.

    Alternately seductive, exasperated, fearful, and murderous, James Gandolfini's Tony is utterly convincing even when executing brutal shifts between domestic comedy and dramatic violence. The first season's other life force is Livia Soprano, Tony's monstrous, meddlesome mother. As Livia, the late Nancy Marchand eclipses her long career of patrician performances to create an indelibly earthy, calculating matriarch who shakes up both families; Livia also serves as foil and rival to Tony's loyal, usually level-headed wife, Carmela (Edie Falco). Lorraine Bracco makes Tony's therapist, Dr. Melfi, a convincing confidante, by turns "professional," perceptive, and sexy; the duo's therapeutic relationship is also depicted with uncommon accuracy. Such grace notes only enrich what's not merely an aesthetic high point for commercial television, but an absorbing film masterwork that deepens with subsequent screenings.

    In its second season, The Sopranos repeatedly defies formula to let the narrative turn as a direct consequence of the characters' behavior, letting everyone in this rogue's gallery of Mafiosi, friends, and family evolve and deepen. That gamble is most apparent in the rupture of the relationship that formed the spine of the first season, the tangled ties between Tony and Livia, whose betrayal makes Tony's estrangement a logical response. Filling that vacuum, however, is prodigal sister Janice (Aida Turturro), whose New Age flakiness never successfully conceals her underlying calculation and opportunism. Soprano's relationship with therapist Melfi also frays during early episodes, as she struggles with escalating doubts about her mobbed-up patient. At home, Tony contends with wife Carmela's ruthless ambitions on behalf of college-bound Meadow (Jamie Lynn Sigler), as well as son Anthony Jr.'s (Robert Iler) sullen adolescent flirtation with existentialism--the sort of touch that the show handles with a smart mix of sympathy and amusement.

    In the brutal and controversial third season, The Sopranos justified its 11-month hiatus with some of its best, and most hotly debated, episodes. It continued to upend convention and defy audience expectations with a deliberately paced, calm-before-the-storm season opener that revolves around the FBI's attempts to bug the Soprano household, and a season finale that (for some) frustratingly leaves several plot lines unresolved. "Employee of the Month," in which Dr. Melfi is raped and considers whether to exact revenge by telling Tony of her attack, earned Emmys for its writers, and is perhaps Emmy nominee Lorraine Bracco's finest hour. Other story arcs concern the rise of the seriously unstable Ralph Cifaretto (Joe Pantoliano) and Tony's affair with "full-blown loop-de-loo" Gloria (Emmy nominee Annabella Sciorra). Plus, there is Tony's estrangement from daughter Meadow, his wayward delinquent son Anthony, Jr., Carmela's crisis of conscience, bad seed Jackie Jr., and the FBI--which, as the season ends, assigns an undercover agent to befriend an unwitting figure in the Soprano family's orbit.

    Though for some the widely debated fourth season contained too much yakking instead of whacking, and an emphasis on domestic family over business Family, in most respects The Sopranos remains television's gold standard. The season garnered 13 Emmy nominations, and subsequent best actor and actress wins for James Gandolfini and Edie Falco as Tony and Carmela, whose estrangement provides the season with its most powerful drama, as well as a win for Joe Pantoliano's psychopath Ralph. Other narrative threads include Christopher's (Emmy nominee Michael Imperioli) descent into heroin addiction, Uncle Junior's (Dominic Chianese) trial, an unrequited and potentially fatal attraction between Carmela and Tony's driver Furio, and a rude joke about Johnny Sack's wife that has potentially fatal implications. Other indelible moments include Christopher's girlfriend Adriana's projectile reaction to discovering that her new best friend is an undercover FBI agent in the episode "No Show," Janice giving Ralph a shove out of their relationship in "Christopher," and the classic "Quasimodo/Nostradamus" exchange in the season-opener, which garnered HBO's highest ratings to date. Freed from the understandably high expectations for the fourth season, heightened by the 16-month hiatus, these episodes can be better appreciated on their own considerable merits. They are pivotal chapters in television's most novel saga.

    From the moment a wayward bear lumbers into the Sopranos' yard in the fifth-season opener, it is clear that The Sopranos is in anything but a "stagmire." The series benefits from an infusion of new blood, the so-called "Class of 2004," imprisoned "family" members freshly released from jail. Most notable among these is Tony's cousin, Tony Blundetto (Steve Buscemi, who directed the pivotal season 3 episode "Pine Barrens"), who initially wants to go straight, but proves himself to be something of a "free agent," setting up a climactic stand-off between Tony and New York boss Johnny Sack. These 13 mostly riveting episodes unfold with a page-turning intensity with many rich subplots. Estranged couple Tony and Carmella (the incomparable James Gandolfini and Edie Falco) work toward a reconciliation (greased by Tony's purchase of a $600,000 piece of property for Carmela to develop). The Feds lean harder on an increasingly stressed-out and distraught Adriana to "snitch" with inevitable results. This season's hot-button episode is "The Test Dream," in which Tony is visited by some of the series' dear, and not-so-dearly, departed in a harrowing nightmare. ... Read more


    20. Paris, Texas
    Director: Wim Wenders
    list price: $9.98
    our price: $9.98
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0002XL35G
    Catlog: DVD
    Sales Rank: 2008
    Average Customer Review: 4.58 out of 5 stars
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    Something like a perfect artistic union is achieved in the major components of Paris, Texas:the twang of Ry Cooder's guitar, the lonely light of Robbie Muller's camera, the craggy landscape of Harry Dean Stanton's face. In his greatest role, longtime character actor Stanton plays a man brought back to his old life after wandering in the desert (or somewhere) for four years. He has a 7-year-old son to get to know, and his wife has gone missing. The material is much in the wanderlust spirit of director Wim Wenders, working from a script by Sam Shepard and L.M. Kit Carson. If the long climactic conversation between Stanton and Nastassja Kinski renders the movie uneven and slightly inscrutable, it's hard to think of a more fitting ending--and besides, the achingly empty American spaces stick longer in the memory than the dialogue. Winner of the top prize at the 1984 Cannes Film Festival. --Robert Horton ... Read more

    Reviews (38)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Paris, Texas
    I truely hope this wonderful film is released on DVD soon. If it's been released by the time you read this review however, please disregard that first line.

    The script for Paris, Texas was written by playwrite and actor Sam Shepard. Shepard has written numerous plays (and the Book Cruising Paradise) including True West and The Burried Child, both of which won numerous awards and put The Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago on the map.

    Paris, Texas is the simple story that begins with a man who's been found wandering in the desert for what could have been years. He cannot speak and seems unwilling to communicate. He is brought back to his brother's home in LA, where his seven year old son is now living. Father and son hesitantly become reaquainted with each other and the memories of thieir past together. And as they do so, the man begins speaking again. They grow closer and eventually decide to find the boy's mother.

    Directed by the visionary Wim Wenders and scored by the brilliant slide guitarist Ry Cooder, the film is both subtle and beautiful. Scenes and shots are drawn out and realistic. Do not expect anything cliche, formulated or predictable. Essentially, do not expect a "Hollywood" film. Unfortunatley, with todays media pace, you will have to watch the film with some patience. This is not a crtiticism however. It is a large component of why the film is so warm and almost haunting.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A unique, emotion filled, artistic masterpiece
    Paris, Texas is a movie unlike any I've seen before. It uses images, facial expressions, masterful character interactions in a way that takes you on a deep psychological journey with the main character "Travis." This movie wrestles with universal themes that have to do with our attempts to resolve our personal demons, rectifying horrible mistakes, and the restoration of personal dignity and relationships.

    The opening scenes reveal an amnesic man whom has been discovered wandering through the desert in Texas and Mexico for four years. His long lost brother claims him, brings him back to civilization, and his journey to remember and to reclaim his life begins.

    The story, screenplay, casting, acting, and direction is supurb. The cinematography is wonderful. One word of warning. This is not a movie for people who want a "mindless, don't think or feel movie." Paris, Texas has a lot to say about our country, its people and barriers to closeness with each other.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Not very good
    I really wanted to like this movie, but the movie wouldn't let me. Sorry to disagree with everyone, but this movie is a real stinker. I gave it 2 stars for the music and the cinematography. To call this movie slow is the understatement of the year ... it moves like a sedated tortoise. I really can't understand those people who say that this is the best film they have ever seen ... they can't have seen many films. I have been watching films seriously for about 30 years, and have seen many great ones ... but this ain't one of them.

    "Okay, wise guy, you didn't like it. Why?" First of all, let me say that the first part, when the main character interacts with his brother, brother's wife, and his kid (who has been raised by his brother), is far better than the end, when he and his son search for his wife. They find her in Houston by waiting outside a bank and following her car (why not try the phone book first?). Then, unexplainably, Travis leaves the kid with her while he takes off again (going to Paris, Texas? Does he intend to come back?). This, after spending much time re-establishing a relationship with his boy. I'm not one that demands happy endings, but I do like endings that make some sort of sense. I hear that much of the ending was unscripted, and it shows.

    Dramas require tension, whether between characters or in the plot ("don't ever open the green door!"). This movie has none, which is a primary reason why it is so terminally dull. Travis (Stanton) is a complex character, but is never fully revealed, and although we may feel sorry for him and his condition, he remains simply a screwed up individual.

    Dramas also require some kind of contrast. There is very little of that in the film in any respect.

    Great dramas usually have great dialogue. Don't look for any memorable dialogue here. I don't expect Shakespeare, but the totally mundane, inane dialogue in this picture does not serve it well. Shepherd could have done better. And the director must have been watching too many Antonioni films, with all the pauses and lacunae.

    Acting? Stockwell, as usual, does a good job. Stanton is mute for much of the first part of the film. When he does finally talk, his lines are delivered in a monotone that could put anyone to sleep. Kinski, Travis' wife, is gorgeous, but doesn't have much of a role.

    I recently viewed "Scarecrow" with Gene Hackman and Al Pacino. This is a truly fine drama. "Paris, Texas" could have been a very good drama, but it would have taken a lot of tinkering.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Brilliant Cinematic Journey
    A man wanders aimlessly in the Texan desert as he collapses in a rural bar looking for water. The man is brought to a doctor who finds a phone number in his empty wallet, which he calls in order to find out the identity of the man. The man is Travis (Harry Dean Stanton) and his brother, Walt (Dean Stockwell), comes from California to pick him up as he vanished four years ago and left family behind. Walt is puzzled about Travis's whereabouts for the last four years, but Travis remains silent as he keeps a secret deep within himself. When Travis vanished his wife, Jane (Nastassja Kinski), disappeared after she had left their son in the custody of Walt and his wife.

    Paris, Texas is a straight forward story, yet mystifying as it discloses very little for the audience. This is Wim Wenders intention as he directed the film. He wants to coerce the audience to participate cerebrally, and if not the cinematic experience will be lost in time. The bewildering element surrounds Travis and his emotional journey through loss, grief, and love. It is through these emotional states that the story expands, but the tale seems to be fixed in time as the progress is minimal. This simplicity brings about a brilliant cinematic experience, which is enhanced by stunning cinematography and vivid colors as the mirage of the desert heat plays tricks on the mind.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Moored and broken.
    It's not surprising that Wim Wenders production company is called 'Road Movies'. In the vast majority of his films geography is just as important as characterization and plot. So it is with 'Paris, Texas', where the remarkable vista shots give some sense of the awe and wonder the average European must feel when confronted with this vast American landscape. Originally, Wender's vision was much larger in scope. He wanted the Harry Dean Stanton character to zig-zag his way across the entire country hoping to capture the enormous contrasts of the landscape. In the end though screenwriter Sam Shepard persuaded the German director to base the core of the movie in Texas as this could easily represent the U.S. as a whole.

    It's rather unusual to see America through the eyes of a European film crew. The film has a slow, observant quality that contrasts sharply with prevailing American dramas where constant close-ups try to make you feel more involved with the characters. In 'Paris, Texas', Wenders lets the quality of the acting speak for itself without recourse to sentimentality.

    The last part of the film was unscripted and tends to drag a bit, but Stanton's understated performance keeps you glued to the screen as the story unfolds. Ry Cooder's score adds a traditional American soundtrack that somehow manages to be something much more ethereal. A poigniant score that colours the film's theme of hope and longing. ... Read more


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