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1. Star Wars Trilogy (Widescreen
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2. Star Trek The Original Series
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3. Star Wars - Episode II, Attack
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4. Star Wars - Episode I, The Phantom
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5. Star Trek The Original Series
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6. Donnie Darko
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7. Star Trek The Original Series
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8. The Rocky Horror Picture Show
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9. Star Trek The Original Series
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10. Star Wars Trilogy (Full Screen
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11. Star Wars - Clone Wars, Vol. 1
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12. Doctor Who - The Key to Time -
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13. Star Wars Ewok Adventures - Caravan
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14. Star Wars - Episode I, The Phantom
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15. Somewhere in Time - Collector's
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17. A Clockwork Orange
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19. The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai
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20. Star Wars - Episode I The Phantom

1. Star Wars Trilogy (Widescreen Edition)
Director: George Lucas, Irvin Kershner, Richard Marquand
list price: $69.98
our price: $41.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00003CXCT
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 3
Average Customer Review: 3.84 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com essential video

Was George Lucas's Star Wars Trilogy, the most anticipated DVD release ever, worth the wait? You bet. It's a must-have for any home theater, looking great, sounding great, and supplemented by generous bonus features.

The Movies
The Star Wars Trilogy had the rare distinction of becoming a cultural phenomenon, a defining event for its generation. On its surface, George Lucas's story is a rollicking and humorous space fantasy that owes debts to more influences than one can count on two hands, but filmgoers became entranced by its basic struggle of good vs. evil "a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away," its dazzling special effects, and a mythology of Jedi knights, the Force, and droids. Over the course of three films--A New Hope (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), and Return of the Jedi (1983)--Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher), and the roguish Han Solo (Harrison Ford) join the Rebel alliance in a galactic war against the Empire, the menacing Darth Vader (David Prowse, voiced by James Earl Jones), and eventually the all-powerful Emperor (Ian McDiarmid). Empire is generally considered the best of the films and Jedi the most uneven, but all three are vastly superior to the more technologically impressive prequels that followed, Episode I, The Phantom Menace (1999) and Episode II, Attack of the Clones (2002).

How Are the Picture and Sound?

Thanks to a new digital transfer, you've never seen C-3PO glow so golden, and Darth Vader's helmet is as black as the Dark Side.

In a word, spectacular. Thanks to a new digital transfer, you've never seen C-3PO glow so golden, and Darth Vader's helmet is as black as the Dark Side. And at the climactic scene of A New Hope, see if the Dolby 5.1 EX sound doesn't knock you back in your chair. Other audio options are Dolby 2.0 Surround in English, Spanish, and French. (Sorry, DTS fans, but previous Star Wars DVDs didn't have DTS either.) There have been a few quibbles with the audio on A New Hope, however.A few seconds of Peter Cushing's dialogue ("Then name the system!") are distorted, and the music (but not the sound effects) is reversed in the rear channels.For example, in the final scene, the brass is in the front right channel but the back left channel (from the viewer's perspective), and the strings are in the left front and back right.The result feels like the instruments are crossing through the viewer.

What's Been Changed?
The rumors are true: Lucas made more changes to the films for their DVD debut. Hayden Christensen (Anakin Skywalker) has been added to a scene in Jedi, Ian McDiarmid (the Emperor) replaces Clive Revill with slightly revised lines in Empire, Temuera Morrison has rerecorded Boba Fett's minimal dialogue, and some other small details have been altered. Yes, these changes mean that the Star Wars films are no longer the ones you saw 20 years ago, but these brief changes hardly affect the films, and they do make sense in the overall continuity of the two trilogies. It's not like a digitized Ewan McGregor has replaced Alec Guiness's scenes, and the infamous changes made for the 1997 special-edition versions were much more intrusive (of course, those are in the DVD versions as well).

How Are the Bonus Features?
Toplining is Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy, a 150-minute documentary incorporating not only the usual making-of nuts and bolts but also the political workings of the movie studios and the difficulties Lucas had getting his vision to the screen (for example, after resigning from the Directors' Guild, he lost his first choice for director of Jedi: Steven Spielberg). It's a little adulatory, but it has plenty to interest any fan. The three substantial featurettes are "The Characters of Star Wars" (19 min.), which discusses the development of the characters we all know and love, "The Birth of the Lightsaber" (15 min.), about the creation and evolution of a Jedi's ultimate weapon, and "The Force Is with Them: The Legacy of Star Wars" (15 min.), in which filmmakers such as Peter Jackson, Ridley Scott, and James Cameron talk about how they and the industry were affected by the films and Lucas's technological developments in visual effects, sound, and computer animation.

The bonus features are excellent and along the same lines as those created for The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones. Each film has a commentary track, recorded by Lucas, Ben Burtt (sound design), Dennis Muren (visual effects), and Carrie Fisher, with Irvin Kershner joining in on the film he directed, The Empire Strikes Back. Recorded separately and skillfully edited together (with supertitles to identify who is speaking), the tracks lack the energy of group commentaries, but they're enjoyable and informative, with a nice mix of overall vision (Lucas), technical details (Burtt, Muren, Kershner), and actor's perspective (Fisher). Interestingly, they discuss some of the 1997 changes (Mos Eisley creatures, the new Jabba the Hutt scene) but not those made for the DVDs.

There's also a sampler of the Xbox game Star Wars: Battlefront, which lets the player reenact classic film scenarios (blast Ewoks in the battle of Endor!); trailers and TV spots from the films' many releases; and a nine-minute preview of the last film in the series, Episode III, Revenge of the Sith (here identified by an earlier working title, The Return of Darth Vader). Small extra touches include anamorphic widescreen motion menus with dialogue, original poster artwork on the discs, and a whopping 50 chapter stops for each film.

"The Force Is Strong with This One"
The Star Wars Trilogy is an outstanding DVD set that lives up to the anticipation. There will always be resentment that the original versions of the films are not available as well, but George Lucas maintains that these are the versions he always wanted to make. If fans are able to put this debate aside, they can enjoy the adventures of Luke, Leia, and Han for years to come. --David Horiuchi ... Read more

Reviews (777)

4-0 out of 5 stars I love the Star Wars Trilogy S.E., warts and all...
I'm somewhat ambivalent about the Special Edition versions of the Star Wars trilogy. On one hand, I rather like the idea that Lucas decided to re-tool the legendary saga more towards his original vision of how he wanted them to look, using modern movie magic technology that had just been a far-off dream when he originally produced these films . On the other hand, I also feel that one should just accept a movie's shortcomings, despite the stature of legend they have attained, and just get on with life. But, I must admit that a lot of the enhancements and expansions worked fairly well, and looked convincing in most cases. Unfortunately, not ALL of the new moments passed muster in my eyes...

I was finally glad that some of the Biggs Darklighter footage was restored to Star Wars (aka prior to the Death Star run). For many years I've heard about these cut scenes- Biggs and Luke talking about the future on Uncle Owen's moisture farm, and the hangar reunion- and had high hopes of finally seeing them. Unfortunately, only the hangar reunion was put back in. The moisture farm intro may well be forever lost...

Another weird addition was Greedo firing first before Han plugged him from under the table in the Cantina. Talk about revisionist history! And the new Jabba scene didn't look that great to me. The CGI Jabba looks a bit too smooth. He was a good sight more wrinkled and warty in both Episode I (Before Star Wars) and Return of the Jedi. Also, you do NOT step on the tail of the most influential crime lord on the planet! I mean, I know they had to tweak the scene to make it work, but still! That should've called for Han's execution right there! Hey, is that Boba Fett hangin' out in the hangar with Jabba? Cool, now he's in all three films!

Then there's that concentric ring of energy that flies outward after the explosions of both Alderaan and the Death Star. Aside from being an unnecessary embellishment, I found this little addition to lack originality as well. This same effect was used in the opening of 'Star Trek VI'. Whoops... I just mentioned 'Star Trek' in a 'Star Wars' review... so much for renewing my fan club membership! Heh...

'Empire' has the fewest changes of the three. The only part I have a problem with are the scenes of Vader boarding his shuttle on Cloud City following his battle with Luke, then exiting his shuttle onto his flagship. Like the explosion rings, I found this to be an unnecessary embellishment; I already got the drift about how he got to his ship from Cloud City, all right? There's also a slight change of dialogue in one scene, following R2D2 getting spat out by the swamp monster in Dagobah. See if you can tell the difference!

I don't have too many complaints about the "improvements" done to Return Of The Jedi, aside from yet another energy ring expanding from the explosion of the second Death Star. The new Jabba's Palace band was pretty neat, but I still prefer the original three-piece band from the original version. I guess I'm just a sentimental kinda guy. There were a few scenes cut from the original release I was hoping to see (Vader force-strangling an Imperial Guard who blocks his attempts to speak with the Emperor, and an Imperial officer being punished by another Imperial guard for insubordination)... no such luck. The expanded Ewok celebration at the end was pretty neat to watch, and included an all-new John Williams composition that has become my second-favorite 'Star Wars' tune (right behind 'The Imperial March- Darth Vader's Theme', from The Empire Strikes Back of course).

I'm not an absolutist about the widescreen format, but in the case of the Star Wars trilogy, it's an absolute necessity. There's just too much happening on both sides of the screen, and you're likely to miss something important. In this case wider IS better.

I just wish they'd finally release these movies on DVD. Like many of the other Amazon reviewers, I too am getting a bit fed up of the constant VHS re-releases. Let's get with the times here!

'Late!

5-0 out of 5 stars Best DVD's Ever
When the Star Wars trilogy arrives on DVD on September 21, the digitally remastered and restored films will be accompanied by over 10 hours of bonus material that goes inside the making of these classic movies.

Each film resides on its own disc, with sharp, pristene imagery restored and remastered by Lowry Digital Images, and the rich sound experience of the saga presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround EX. The films also include new commentary tracks, featuring insights from George Lucas, director Irvin Kershner, actress Carrie Fisher, sound designer Ben Burtt, and Industrial Light & Magic's Dennis Muren.

The fourth disc is packed with bonus material, the most notable being Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy. This two-and-a-half hour documentary traces the evolution of the saga, from a low-budget labor-of-love space saga to the movie phenomenon that defied the odds and reinvented the rules.

This comprehensive documentary features all new interviews with George Lucas and more than 40 members of the cast and crew from the original trilogy, as well as a host of filmmakers and media personalities. Empire of Dreams includes some never-before-seen behind-the-scenes footage from the making of the three films.

Other material on the fourth disc includes:

Episode III Behind the Scenes Preview: The Return of Darth Vader: Finally, Star Wars: Episode III will reveal just how Anakin Skywalker became Darth Vader, the most iconic villain in film history. In this exclusive preview, George Lucas discusses Anakin's descent, with a first look at the new Vader costume forged for Episode III. Also, experience how Hayden Christensen and Ewan McGregor have prepared for the epic lightsaber battle that has been anticipated for more than two decades: the climactic showdown between Anakin and Obi-Wan Kenobi.

The Birth of the Lightsaber: Its unforgettable hum and scintillating glow are instantly recognizable around the world. Now, viewers will discover the origins of this elegant weapon from a more civilized age in this documentary devoted to the lightsaber.

The Characters of Star Wars: An in-depth look at how favorite characters came to be, featuring rare concept art, behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with George Lucas and the cast and crew who shaped the screen's favorite heroes.

The Force Is With Them: The Legacy of Star Wars: Star Wars opened up a galaxy of possibilities to a generation of filmmakers and creative talents. Hear from some of the most notable filmmakers of our time about how influential the Star Wars movies have been to their lives.

Star Wars Battlefront Trailer and Playable Demo: The fourth disc will offer a trailer featuring an exciting look at the upcoming Star Wars Battlefront video game from LucasArts, along with a special demo for Xbox users that lets players fight the Battle of Endor as a Rebel or Imperial soldier and drive AT-STs, ride speeder bikes and use different weapons to lead their side to victory. The full version of Star Wars Battlefront will also be released Sept. 21 for the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and PC.

Star Wars: Episode III Making the Game Preview: Video-game players will be able to experience the stunning Jedi action of Episode III themselves in the new Star Wars: Episode III game, due out in Spring 2005 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox. This special feature shows how game developers at LucasArts worked behind-the-scenes and on the set to create the most authentic Jedi experience ever.

Original Trailers and TV Spots: The original theatrical teaser, launch and re-release trailers for each film, plus TV spots, are featured on the DVD.

Never-Before-Seen Production Gallery: Delve into an unseen corners of the Lucasfilm Archives with exclusive photos from the making of the trilogy, with hundreds of rare behind-the-scene images.

Posters and Print Campaigns: The original releases of the Star Wars films came at a time when international campaigns produced a wealth of intriguing, alternative poster art. Explore a collection of theatrical posters from around the world.

Exclusive DVD-ROM Content: The Star Wars Trilogy DVDs are keys that unlock exclusive content available only through a special DVD-ROM website.

5-0 out of 5 stars M-I-G-H-T-Y F-I-N-E
the star wars trilogy was byfar the best trilogy I have ever seen!!!!!!!!!!!!!! all of the star wars movies were MIGH-TY FINE, and to the guy that said star wars was a LOTR rippoff, I can't see where you are going with your story, its nothing like LOTR, and I for one are one of those people you were talking about and as long as the star wars movies come out i'll help make Lucas richer!!

5-0 out of 5 stars A Classic!
I just recently purchased a DVD player and knew that the Star Wars Trilogy would have to be in my collection ASAP. Of course I've these three movies many, many times, but for some reason I never tire of seeing them again. The first one brings back many childhood memories (my brother had a Star Wars themed bedroom!) and it's comforting to put it on just to have as background noise when my apartment gets too quiet. I guess that is the true meaning of a classic movie - you love it so much that it becomes a part of yourself.

The added interviews and such on this DVD were pretty insightful to me and the bonus disc of "never before seen" footage from making the three movies had me giddy with delight!

I can't imagine anyone not wanting to have this set in their collection!

2-0 out of 5 stars Lord of The RIngs Ripoff!!!
The Star Wars legacy was directly stolen from The Lord of The Rings novels, which were publised in the 1950s. It's shameless, I tell you, shameless!

First there's Luke Skywalker, who has to leave behind his friends to face the evil all alone. But he gets to take along a little droid named R2-D2. This is obviously based on Frodo Baggins and Samwise Gamgee in Lord of the Rings. Then there are the wise Jedi Masters, Yoda and Obi Wan Kanobe. These two characters were obviously based on Tolkien's Gandalf.

Han Solo is a carbon copy of Aragorn. Princess Liea, the warrior hottie, is a ripoff of Eowyn in the Lord of the Rings. Chewbacca is just a ripoff of Gimli. And what about Boba Fett, the mysterious loner who is loyal to no one, who is only out for himself? This is just a ripoff of Gollum. The Death Star is really Mount Doom. Darth Vader is Saruman, and The Empoeror is Saruman.

And then there's Lando Calrisian, who is stolen from J.R.R. Tolkein's character King Theoden. You know, the cowardly ruler who bow's down to the bad guy, then finds his courage to fight! The storm toopers are just Orcs. And the most shameless ripoff of all is the Imperial Walkers in Empire Strikes Back! They are just like the Mumakil monsters in Lord of the Rings.

I can't believe how George Lucas become so filthy rich through thievery!! ... Read more


2. Star Trek The Original Series - The Complete First Season
list price: $129.99
our price: $97.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0002I831S
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 163
Average Customer Review: 4.19 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

In 1965, Star Trek set out to boldly go where no series had gone before, beginning a three-year mission that led to a franchise that would last decades.Here at last is the first season of the original series all in one box, 29 episodes in their original broadcast order.That means starting with "The Man Trap," and soon followed by "Where No Man Has Gone Before," the second pilot filmed and the first one starring William Shatner as Captain Kirk.The many highlight episodes include "Balance of Terror" and "Errand of Mercy" (introducing, respectively, the Romulans and the Klingons), the two-part "The Menagerie" (which recycled footage from the original pilot, "The Cage," which featured Christopher Pike as the captain of the Enterprise and is not included in this set), "Space Seed" (introducing Ricardo Montalban's Khan character), and "The City of the Edge of Forever" (written by sci-fi giant Harlan Ellison and considered by many the best-ever episode of the series).

The first-season DVD set is supplemented by 80 minutes of featurettes incorporating 2003-04 interviews with Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, other cast members, and producers, and some 1988 footage of Gene Roddenberry.The longest (24 minutes) featurette, "The Birth of a Timeless Legacy," examines the two pilot episodes and the development of the crew.Slightly shorter are "To Boldly Go... Season One," which highlights key episodes, and "Sci-Fi Visionaries," which discusses the series' great science fiction writers (most famously in "The City of the Edge of Forever").Shatner shows off his love of horses in "Life Beyond Trek," and, more interestingly, Nimoy debunks various rumors in "Reflections of Spock."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 case is 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 set is 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

Reviews (21)

5-0 out of 5 stars TIME TRAVEL NOT REQUIRED TO SEE THIS COMING
I must say, that time travel was not required for me to anticipate this release of the original STAR TREK on DVD boxed set format... In the past I collected all 79 episodes individually on VHS format and enjoyed them all.. I love the show, its movies and "THE NEXT GENERATION" . I knew however that someday the ORIGINAL show would come to DVD as a boxed set.

MY PATIENCE HAS PAID OFF... I did not make the mistake of buying the 2per episode disks for several reasons.. 1. I knew that thsi show would join the others as season sets. 2. The packaging of the 2per disks was, to say the least HORRID.. 3.Cost economy... yes, I am not a cheap skate but i prefer more for less.. and last.. 4. SPACE- the limited frontier.. on my shelves for many disks when my TNG collections only takes up about 12" or so..

WELL, as for the show itself.. the FIRST and SECOND seasons are very well written storys, bad effects aside.. THE THIRD season was not quite up to snuff, but i still LOVE MY TREK...

GO OUT AND BUY BUY BUY... This set will sure to please..
AND NOT TO FORGET THE BEST PART---Special Features...
I fully enjoy learning all about movies, and TV shows i grew up to love..

THX FOR READING

5-0 out of 5 stars The true final frontier
Even with five spinoffs,ten movies and nearly 38 years of history,The original Star Trek is the one that started it all and continue to inspire millions of fans.
The plot was simple, in the future a starship goes out on a five year mission to explore strange new worlds and seek out new life and civilizations.Led by the heroic Captain James T. Kirk (willian Shatner) along with his Vulcan first officer Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy).The other crew members include Dr.Leonard McCoy (the late DeForest Kelley),Chief Engineer Montgomery "Scotty" Scott(James Doohan), Helmsman Hikaru Sulu (George Takai),Communications officer Nyota Uhura (Nichelle Nichols), and Yoaman Janice Rand (Grace Lee whitney who would only last half the first season).
Despite the cheap looking special effects and set pieces,ST was a mixture of action,humor,drama and morality tales.A far cry from other science fiction shows airing at the time such as Lost In Space.Classic first season episodes includes The Naked Time,The Enemy Within, The Menagerie ,The Conscience of the King, Balance of Terror(the Romulan's debut), Space Seed(KHAN!!!), Arena,This Side of Paradise,The Devil in the Dark, and the greatest Trek episode of all time, The City on the Edge of Forever.
The new season DVD set includes extras not included in the first wave sets which consisted of two episodes on forty discs.

5-0 out of 5 stars Finally!
I've been waiting for this for MANY years! I know fans who bought the earlier DVD's (2 episodes on one DVD) are upset but in fairness those came out before this whole trend of 'Series Box Sets' started. And yes I'm sure that there will be future compilations (Special Ultra Limited Edition, etc) but I've always just wanted one thing: to have the entire series at my disposal to pop in a favorite episode whenever I wanted and HERE IT IS. I'm so psyched!

5-0 out of 5 stars I love this series!
Star Trek is my favorite T.V. series of all time. I'm so glad that they're finally releasing it in box sets. I avoided buying the previous releases because at $20 for each 2 episode disc, I would have felt more guilt than joy everytime I bought one. I feel bad for the people that purchased those. That was really a greedy money grubbing move that Paramount made. SOB's, It always really pissed me off. This box set is also too expensive, but they know we'll buy them. It's like health care. You have to have it, so they take advantage of you and charge as much as they possibly can, making sure that they can make themselves richer and richer at the expense of us, the common man.

1-0 out of 5 stars Yeah yeah, I "know" I should have waited...
but knowing Paramount, they could of sat on the release the boxed sets for who knows how long. It could have been atleast until 2006 (40th Anniversary) until they decided to release them as boxed sets since they could have easily continued to gouge buyers into buying the 2 episode per disc set -- why shouldn't they? they control the market?...and they probably will still do it. After everyone has bought the boxed sets they will release them all again remastered in High Definition. Maybe, with the infamous blooper reel as a bonus (unless they oh, so generously decide to release it in the upcoming season 2 and 3 boxed sets -- but I doubt it. Frankly, life's too short and I didn't want to wait for the boxed sets. I've enjoyed them since their release 5 years ago.

In any case, I won't be re-buying the new sets. The "bonuses" seem a little thin and desparate....probably will be some interviews of some of the supporting staff that were loosely involved (many of the important guys have passed on any way)in the original series making some minor comment on obscure incidents playing on the nostalgiac thirst of the hard-core fan.

In fact I can see Paramount re-re-releasing the series again (the 40th anniversary set?) with FULL LENGTH commentaries for every episode (e.g. Sally Kellerman, Willim Koenig, Dianne Muldar, William Ware Theiss etc.) by some of the actors actors and guests stars -- ONLY after everyone has bought the boxed sets.

However had Paramount been more fair about how they released the DVD's,and the way they treat loyal fans, I probably would have, for the sake of "completeness" continued to support their products (TNG, DS9, Voyager, and likely Enterprise etc.) but I'm not -- mainly because they don't deserve my business and they won't. In fact I generally BOYCOTT Paramount DVDs.

As Scotty once said: "Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame me"...and I'm not about to be fooled again.

See you later paramount suckers! ... Read more


3. Star Wars - Episode II, Attack of the Clones (Widescreen Edition)
Director: George Lucas
list price: $29.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006HBUJ
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 1277
Average Customer Review: 3.38 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1926)

4-0 out of 5 stars The force is strong with this one.
Star[]Wars! The series has come back into full swing with 'Attack of the Clones.' Everything that 'Phantom Menace' tried to be and more, we return to the rollicking space adventure that made the first three classics. Don't pay attention to the negitive reviews, aside from a little cheese covered romance the goods are delivered in great fashion. 'Attack..' is packed with extremely well lensed action set pieces that remind the viewer of the summer of 1980. The acting is decent and works for the material provided...I mean, this is Star Wars not Shakespere and lines are delivered with intended monotonality; lightsabers speak louder than words and emotion a Jedi does not crave. I found this film to be better than 'Return of the Jedi' due to its return to the swashbuckling action/adverture of the first two movies sans cute little talking kid friendly creatures that help generate mechandise sales for the toddler marketing target group. The special effects are outstanding of course, and the sound effects were really cool. The story was decent enough to get you to care what happens to the heroes and dislike the villians (finally, villians. That seemed to be missing from episode one save Darth Maul who was way underused). All around an excellent chapter in the saga and a great movie in itself. This film makes you look forward to the next installment and the man himself-Darth Vader. Thanks, George for reigniting the magic that was, and is, Star Wars.

5-0 out of 5 stars the best of the star wars movies
in this one,yoda fights.this is truly awesome.anakan is growing up.he goes to get his mom from slavery but shes been killed by these nasty little monsters.so he goes genocidal on them all.ben is tring to teach anakan but hes learning way faster than normal and is quite the showoff.the kids will like it.it is the last full length movie of the set.there is an animated short film after this part called clone wars.the last one is due out next summer.just anybody bwill like it.the chick is a young teen ans ends up being anakans girlfriend.i dont know what you heard but this is an all time great.the special effects are cool.this movie is a classic!

2-0 out of 5 stars Big Trouble In Little Greece: Attack Of The Kung Fu Robots
If I were a movie director and for some reason I decided to undertake the project of making the most grotesque parody and mockery ever made of the original Star Wars trilogy, I would do the following:

First, I would open the movie where the main character of the movie -The Jedi- freefalls some 10,000 stories in a sprawling metropolis, all the while narrowly missing multitudes of careening hovercrafts which literally filled the sky, only to finally land safely inside one of them just in the nick of time, nanoseconds before he was about to slam into the ground.

Secondly, I would include the most bland, personality-less, emotionally-uninspiring actors and actresses I could find. Also, I would incorporate pseudo-Greek cultural and archeological elements throughout the movie (which had no relevancy to the sci-fi theme of the movie) so as to confuse the viewer as to what planet...or planets the movie was taking place in...or what universe and epoch(s) for that matter. I'd include several pseudo-romantic scenes where there wasn't an iota of emotion or chemistry between the two love birds and whose forced, stimulated 'romantic scenes' seemed to serve no purpose, either.

I would then attempt to completely destroy...annhilate the original Star Wars's sacred notion of the force -as being stimulated and channeled by spirituality and mind over matter- and any drama associated with it as well. MY notion would be that the measure of one's force can be determined by analyzing mitochondrial DNA samples to tally the number of antibodies present in the protoplasm.

Next, I would blow away the concept of the original Star Wars's wimpy 2-jedi battle scenes with an epic magnitude-12 mega battle scene which consisted of 10,000 jedis and 100,000 jedi foes engaged in flipping-through the-air somersault kung fu moves that render the likes of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and all '70s special-effects-laden Chinese kung fu flics obsolete. You thought that Luke Skywalker jumping 10 feet out of a carbon freeze container was cool? Could Luke Skywalker stay airborne for 10 seconds all the while throwing barrages of backroundhouse kicks and punches? Screw that punchless Luke Skywalker single-blade lightsaber. Behold, I introduce the double-edged light saber which all jedis are equipped with. FULLY FUNCTIONAL AND OPERATIONAL. Only an elite and intelligent class of human being can be a jedi? Not anymore. Any living, crawling, oozing intelligence-devoid parasite, wingless bat or orc -of any gender-can be a jedi.

Finally, I would end the movie with Kung Fu/Force-Master Yoda defeating the Master Evil Jedi with triple and quintuple cartwheel backroundhouse kicks and punches, while airborne, and lightning-fast Tae Kwan Do slaps and curled finger combinations that would put Jackie Chan to shame. The very last scene of the movie would end with the Evil Jedi Master becoming so angry, because of his defeat, that his head grew to the size of a large balloon, then exploded with the force of 20 grenades. Maybe I'd include that scene only in the UNCUT version.

The result: The sci-fi sequel to "Big Trouble in Little China" -Big Trouble in Little Greece: Attack Of The Kung Fu Robots...or as some people may prefer to call it -Star Wars II: Attack Of The Clones.

2-0 out of 5 stars My Take on Mr. Lucas
OK, here's my rant. I'll keep it brief (unlike some other reviewers)

Best Parts:
1. Phantom Menace - Pod Race, Darth Maul
2. Attack of the Clones - Yoda's lightsaber flight

That's it. Everything else in these films is an utter joke. I could go on for many paragraphs, but I'll spare you. You gotta realize that there was a reason George didn't direct Empire or Jedi. He's an awful director. He has no ear for dialogue. The newer digital film process looks really awful. Only good ol' George could manage to waste the talents of Christopher Lee, Sam Jackson, Ewan McGregor, and Natalie Portman. And I think Hayden Christensen is the only other actor who possesses Keanu Reeves' atrocious wooden technique. His Anakin doesn't possess darkness, just stupidity. I hope Lucas gets a tumor in that fat double chin of his. If you don't like it, sue me. He's destroyed the meaning of my childhood favorites, so the hell with him. Do you really think the next film is going to make up for it? Only if it's about four hours long and is directed by someone else.

4-0 out of 5 stars Star Wars is Star Wars-No matter what anyone thinks
I am writing on behalf of all the Star Wars movies. Sure the prequals aren't life changing but they still make the cut worthy of the title Star Wars.Back in the 70s/early 80s America needed a major facelift. We had nothin to look foward to anymore and just went by living. The movies out back then were dark and dreary. our common mythology had faded into the closet. Then came Star Wars. It was just supposed to be another space family film that would eventually be forgotten about. We were decieved. What George Lucas put on this Earth was meant to be. He dragged us out of the gutter and gave us something to talk about. People had a place to escape to and run away from there troubles. It wasn't like your average cowboy movie where you know the outcome and the setting. It was a strange galaxy with weird looking creatures and strange spaceships. It was all so real and lifelike. It was the total opposite of Star Trek. It was cool. People wanted more. They got two more. Each delivering there own set of memories. The lines became legendary. The sound of a light saber instantly recognizable. Movies nowadays are always borrwing lines and plots of other movies. Star Wars only borrowed one thing. Creativity. The Star Wars story was pulled out of mid-air. It wasn't like George Lucas said he wanted to make a space movie kind of like an old western. He created the idea of A Space Saga Trilogy. He's the one who threw us into this exciting new world called Star Wars. Fans wanted more. They got comics and books. then Star Wars movies were no more. They were still in the movies. Oter movies had borrowed lines and plots for their own. Thats why Star Wars is pop culture ICON. That is what the prequals lack. When someone comes up yo you with a stick in one hand and is waving it around they don't say "Watch out Count Dooku". They say watch out Darth Vader. The prequals are good movies but they aren't life changing like the Classics. If the prequals came first people wouldn't be walking around saying Look A destroyer droid. They don't have the trademark line like they do in the Classics. They didn't create new famous lines, they just took them from the old ones. As a movie I would give Phantom Menace and AOTC a 4 Star award. As a Star Wars film I would give it 2. The negative two is for lack of creativity. The OT is so popular because of what it was nd what it was created as. George did'nt give us that sense of story and herics like he did with the OT. George didn't create the OT because he wanted to tell a story for himself. He made it for us. For Episode one we weren't thrown into this new world with weird craetures and memorable charecters. In a sense of story The prequals fit nicely with the OT. But for a regular movie It gives us nothing to remember and say over and over again and to instantly recognize as Star Wars. I know it is hard to repeat what happened in the 70s/80s but there was nothing George Lucas could do about it. The Prequals are out in a world where evereything has already happened and didn't ignite the flame as the OT did. The Phantom Menace just continued in the name of Star Wars. The OT are just such good movies in themselves and it just doesn't matter which one you see first. They are all memorable. Don't get me wrong, the prequals are good movies and definantly worthy in the name of Star Wars but they are just thrown in with all the other movies which were created around one movie-Star Wars. Other movies wouldn't be the same without there Star Wars moment. That is why when in the movie Just Married Sarah(Brittany Murphy) asks Tom(Ashton Kutcher) if he ever dreamed of anything more glorious in his childhood than his wedding night, he flashes back to when he was playing lightsabers on the playground with other kids to the famous tune that Changed The World. Da da da DAAAA daa-you know the rest!
"Remember, the Force will be with you, Always" ... Read more


4. Star Wars - Episode I, The Phantom Menace (Widescreen Edition)
Director: George Lucas
list price: $29.98
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Asin: B00003CX5P
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 1439
Average Customer Review: 3.48 out of 5 stars
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Description

Feature-Length Audio Commentary
The creators of Episode I give you insight into the film like no one else can. Hear from: writer/director George Lucas, Producer Rick McCallum, sound designer and film co-editor Ben Burtt, ILM animation director Rob Coleman and ILM visual effects supervisors John Knoll, Dennis Muren and Scott Squires.

"The Beginning"
Making Episode I Documentary Film
Culled from over 600 hours of behind-the-scenes footage, this all-new hour-long documentary film takes you inside Lucasfilm and Industrial Light & Magic during the making of The Phantom Menace. Sit in on the film's production process including: pre-production, casting, principal photography, editing, rough-cut reviews, visual effects meetings and other events that few people have had access to before.

Exclusive Deleted Scenes and Documentary
All-new documentary featuring George Lucas, Rick McCallum and guests discussing the painstaking process every director must go through in determining what scenes make the final cut.View seven exclusive deleted sequences that were created specifically for this DVD and learn why they were eliminated from the final version of the film.

Multi-Angle Animatics
Discover the amazing techniques used to create two memorable sequences (Submarine and Podrace Lap 1) from storyboards to animatics to final composites.

Featurettes
Five mini-documentaries give you an insider's look at The Phantom Menace's Storyline, Design, Costumes, Visual Effects and Fight sequences through behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with the cast and filmmakers.

Web Documentaries
Originally released on starwars.com during the production of Episode I, this award-winning twelve-part web documentary series gives you a fly-on-the-wall perspective into the making of the film as it was happening.

Exclusive Production Photo Gallery
Scroll through a never-before-seen gallery of candid cast and crew shots, each with captions.

"Duel of the Fates" Music Video
One of the most popular music videos during its release in May 1999, the "Duel of the Fates" video intertwines live footage of John Williams conducting the London Symphony Orchestra with behind-the-scenes clips and dramatic footage featured in Episode I.

Posters and Print Campaign
Examine the Episode I theatrical posters (Teaser and Launch) and the International Outdoor advertising used to support the release of Episode I around the world.

Trailers and TV Spots
Watch the theatrical teaser and launch trailers, plus seven TV spots (including the five original "Tone Poems" along with "The Saga Begins" and "All Over Again").

"Star Wars: Starfighter-The Making of a Game" from LucasArts
This featurette offers insight into the making of the popular flight action combat game along with information on other Star Wars games from LucasArts.

Exclusive DVD-ROM Content
Your Episode I DVD is a key that unlocks exclusive Star Wars content only available through a special DVD-ROM website. ... Read more

Reviews (2449)

5-0 out of 5 stars 5 stars for DVD quality, 3 stars for the movie
I'm reviewing only the DVD, and not the movie itself, which was a bit of a stinker, in my opinion. Well produced, beautifully filmed, but very poorly written.

Anyway - this is an awesome and incredibly well done DVD. Lots and lots of extras. Great commentary by Lucas, the producer, the sound man, etc. Interview with the composer. Lots and lots and LOTS of background materials on the making of the film, and the entire process of putting it together from initial writing to final production, and the making of the DVD itself.

The image of the movie is *very* crisp and clean. The deleted scenes are a nice addition to the movie. I am very impressed (and surprised, to be cynical about it) that Lucas has given us the full-featured DVD the first time out, and not offered us one scaled down DVD version, only to offer us a better version in a year, and then the full-scale one a year after that, like he's constantly done with the VHS versions of his movies. Thank you, Lucas, for taking care of your fans this time, and not trying to pad your pockets a few times before giving the fans what they *really* want.

Quality-wise, this is absolutely one of the most loaded, best-featured DVDs I have in my collection.

(as a p.s. - after hearing Lucas' commentary, and talking about some things coming up in the next movies, I have realized that a few things I criticized about this movie actually make sense oin terms of the upcoming story-line. However, I still think that, overall, the writing for this movie was only a cut above old b-movies)

4-0 out of 5 stars OK Movie, Great DVD
The Phantom Menace was probably the most heavily anticipated movie in history. It was the prequel to the original Star Wars series and George Lucas was taking the helm as director for the first time since Star Wars in 1977. The film was hyped incessantly and, of course, the final product failed to live up to the expectations. The Phantom Menace is not a bad film. It actually is absolutely amazing to look at and the special effects are incredible. The problem with the film is the plot. It seems disjointed as it bounces around from scene to scene. It seems that Mr. Lucas was to preoccupied with getting the film to look right than the actual story (which is what made the first Star Wars so great). Many people weren't happy with the casting of several roles, especially Ewan MacGregor as Obi Won Kenobi, but he does a decent job in an undeveloped role. Liam Neeson is commanding as Qui Gon Jin and Natalie Portman is quite good as Queen Amadala. The biggest complaint that most people had with the film was with the character of Jar Jar Binks and I won't disagree with most of what's been said about the annoying character. Mr. Lucas has previously shunned the DVD arena (American Graffiti is the only one of his films to appear in the format), but he goes about this release with a vengeance. The extras, including seven deleted scenes, are worth buying this DVD alone. Mr. Lucas spent an additional four million dollars on them and the money is well spent.

5-0 out of 5 stars prequel?
in this one,there is a council of jedis who rule everything and keep the peace.yoda,ben,some black dude and on like that.a younger ben finds a little kid-who is called anakan and later vadar.that kid wins his freedom with bens help in a very cool pod race.ben recognizes the force in the little one and decides to train him as a jedi.the bad guy is darth maul who has a double bladed light saber-very cool.hes the coolest looking character yet.i think peple came down too hard on jar-jar.hes a dork but there have been a lot worse.the kids will like it.it is the 4th part but the first episode.everybody should go see this one because just anybody will like it.anakans mom was pretty nice if she cleaned herself up.this movie isnt as good as the tv says but they blow everything all out of proportion anyway.this movie is abselutely incredible though.i think the black dude may be in the matrix too.its good too.the special effects are good.after this there is one more.then there is an animated short film.there is also another one on the way next summer.

2-0 out of 5 stars To Lucas: Eye of the Tiger, Man!!
To quote the famous lines by Apollo Creed from Rocky III, "You lost for all the wrong reasons, you lost your edge. Eye of the tiger, man!"
A good analogy when you think of it...

When Lucas made the first trilogy he was a relativly unknown up-and-comming writer/director full of desire and well, "hunger" to make his mark. That drive lead to the masterpieces of pop culture we know as ANH and ESB. By ROTJ his edge was already waning but thankfully it was the last one... or so we thought.

By the time TPM came out he lost it completely and produced a quite mediocre if at best ordinary film. Living like a king for the past 20+ years made him not "hungry and full of desire" but fat and content. He lost his edge.

Peter Jackson's LOTR Trilogy is so much better than Lucas' last 2 efforts for this same reason. Jackson has the "eye of the tiger"!

Lucas HAS to get his edge back. Most agree AOTC is better than TPM but not by much. Will episode 3 prove that Lucas got it back??

If only reality played out like the fantasy of Rocky III and Lucas brings home a REAL winner....

1-0 out of 5 stars What drug was George Lucas on?
I love Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi. I think that George Lucas should have stopped there. The two movies: The Phantom Menace and the Attack of the Clones....SUCK! What was George Lucas thinking? Jar Jar Binks needs to tossed off the face of the earth, and Hayden Christansen (while hot), needs to take some acting lessons. Not enough special effects in the world could make me want to see the third release. Poor acting and writing have made me want to run for cover! Where's the FORCE when you need it? ... Read more


5. 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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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


6. Donnie Darko
Director: Richard Kelly (II)
list price: $14.98
our price: $11.24
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Asin: B00005V3Z4
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 221
Average Customer Review: 4.45 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (663)

5-0 out of 5 stars Watch Out For That Wascally Wabbit...
Donnie Darko has quickly become one of my all time favorite movies. How can I describe it? It is strange, dark (of course), cool, mysterious, enigmatic, scary, funny, serious, sarcastic, bleak yet hopeful, mystical, and even charming. Jake Gyllenhaal is Donnie, who is absolutely believable no matter what he says or does. Time travel? No problem! A seven-foot rabbit named Frank who predicts the end of the world in 28 days? No problem! Donnie's earnestness is mesmerizing. The rest of the cast is an incredible ensemble of big stars in small, crucial roles. Drew Barrymore (E.T., The Wedding Singer, Charlies Angels) plays the only teacher in Donnie's school who seems to realize that what's being passed off as an "education" is actually a long, dull course in mind-numbing mediocrity (hmmm... sounds like my highschool). Noah Wyle (ER) is the science teacher who has wild theoretical conversations with Donnie about time travel, then cuts him off competely when Donnie asks if God might be involved. Donnie's mom is played by Mary McDonnell (Dances With Wolves, Grand Canyon). She loves him while being frustrated and afraid of his condition. Katharine Ross (The Graduate, The Stepford Wives) is Donnie's psychiatist, trying to probe his mind and help him. Patrick Swayze (Dirty Dancing) plays Jim Cunningham, tele-guru and local self-help author, who is exposed by Donnie (and Frank) for who / what he REALLY is. Jena Malone is Donnie's new girlfriend Gretchen. She's got problems enough of her own. Together, this cast of characters orbits perfectly around Donnie's dark center of gravity. Do not expect the typical hollywood bucket of swill here! Donnie Darko took actual thought to create. It's style and story are unique. I had never even heard of it due to a less than half-hearted ad campaign (I'm a TV addict, yet saw not one DD commercial). I just happened to see the DVD on the shelf and took a chance. You should too...

5-0 out of 5 stars Gyllenhaal is outstanding in this haunting film
How to describe "Donnie Darko," the dark psychological drama written and directed by Richard Kelly? After seeing it I thought of the film as a sort of "Ordinary People" meets "Being John Malkovich," with a touch of "Pi" and "American Beauty" thrown in. But ultimately that equation is unfair; "Donnie" is, in the end, a true original.

The film takes place in 1988. Jake Gyllenhaal stars as the title character: a troubled, sleepwalking teenager who has recurring, frightening visions. Donnie is a quest to understand the forces that are affecting his life and sanity.

Gyllenhaal's outstanding performance helps to hold the film together. He is a quirky, offbeat leading man; at times frightening, at times appealingly vulnerable. Gyllenhaal's work is superbly complemented by that of an eclectic ensemble cast which includes Katharine Ross, Drew Barrymore, and Noah Wyle. I was particularly impressed by Patrick Swayze's turn as a creepy, oily motivational speaker.

"Donnie" defies genre classification. It blends together elements of serious family drama, 80s period piece, horror, satire, and science fiction. In a sense, it is a deconstruction of the whole 80s teen movie genre. The script makes intriguing use of 80s pop culture.

"Donnie" has scenes of weirdness and absurdity, and is often punctuated by bizarre dialogue and strange, frightening imagery. And there are some really moving scenes that tap into the universal experience of human loneliness and the need for love. If there was ever a movie that had all the elements to make it a cult classic, it's the haunting "Donnie Darko."

2-0 out of 5 stars Undoubted young talent produces pretentious film-making
I have high hopes for Richard Kelly as his talent, ideas, motivation, enthusiasm and everything you need for a good career in directing is evident in this movie.

Sadly, this time around, its a painful experience for the viewer, unless you are so into puzzles, sci-fi, symbolism and finding out what a movie means AFTER watching it that you can forgive what is, after all, really poor storytelling.

Hint - A really good movie doesn't need multiple websites stacked with backstory and explanations.

And, as usual, its all the fault of the script, which isn't a film script at all. Its a / Philosophy/ Religiousy / Science Fictiony puzzle (although I left out a few things there). This puzzle unfolds as a series of vignettes masquerading as scenes, related by Kelly's 'themes' but little else.

The majority of the characters are little more than pawns whose job is just to move the puzzle plot on... nice..... and.......... slowly (with the odd music montage and cute-dialogue sketch thrown in, as if they were ad breaks).

The main character was ok and most of the actors did well with what little they had to work with, but the MAJORITY of them should have been cut from the finished film, they are so redundant.

There is no drive in the film and little sense of progression. We know loosely what the main character is ultimately facing, but never immediately so there is never any sense of anticipation, suspense, hope or fear for the viewer. We are simply passed more information and explanations to debate and question later with our fellow sci-fi-symbol buffs.

I'm not saying you sit there waiting for things to happen because things do happen (to be fair some of the "scenes" are entertaining in their own way). But you do sit there waiting for a STORY to develop so you can start experiencing something (which is what we pay our money for, isn't it?).

But there is no drama, no connection and NO STORY.

All you get is a cool song and a plot twist (explained). Some people are happy with that I guess

4-0 out of 5 stars Lagomorph Odyssey
The young Richard Kelly, director of this film, graduated from USC Film School in 1997. This was his first feature film. He has spun a dark multi-layered vision, part dramatic comedy, part science fiction, part fantasy and allegory. The movie almost needs to be classified as three genres stirred gently. He set the world of the film as autumn 1988. It is, in part, a story of adolescent teenae angst, the familiar turf of a John Hughes project, but actually it is more like John Hughes meets David Lynch meets Steven Spielberg. Kelly has put several interesting twists into the high school yarn. It is like a hip FERRIS BEULLER'S DAY OFF.

Jake Gyllenhaal, from MIDNIGHT MILE & OCTOBER SKY, played Donnie Darko brilliantly. He was a young man smarter than his teachers, his parents, and his friends. An intrepid curious lad who could ask those questions very few wanted to answer. He is a kid who is being treated for mental illness, even though he may not have been clincially ill. He was outspoken, outrageous, and socially boorish...like most smart teenagers. Roger Ebert wrote," Donnie is appealingly smart yet sarcastic, more quixotic than eccentric, more curious than frightened.

The film's prologue is bang on target. A bright sunrise on dark foothills, suddenly interrupted in the frame by the insertion of the black silhousette of a young man's head. Donnie Darko, there on the hard ground near his bicycle, far from home. After he cycles home, his arrival is treated as familiar behavior; sleep sojourns, adventurous forays into the darkness. That very next night, we witness him roused from his slumber by someone calling his name. He slips outside and we meet the presence that has beckoned him...a medium longshot of someone in a rabbit suit...someone named Frank. But this rabbit, tall as HARVEY, is not a benign companion. Its face is twisted into a demonic death mask. With Darko away from the house, we see an accident happening. Something has fallen out of the night sky, and crashed directly into Donnie's bedroom; a 707 jet engine. If he had been there when the engine came acallin', he would have died instantly. Frank sends Donnie off to do devilish chores; flooding the school, and burning down a house.

Nothin is linear or logical in Darko's dreamlike world. His parents are too understanding. His new girlfriend, Jena Malone, is really too easy to get to know. Physical laws, like an axe being buried in a bronze statue, are tweaked and violated. The film can only approach some level of cohesiveness if one is able to conjure up a premise, a through line. For me, most of the characters presented are probably actually a part of Donnie's
"real" life, but as they were mostly presented in the bulk of the narrative, they were peopling his "dream" life. One possible explication for the whiplash lunges from drama to comedy to satire to science fiction and fantasy, was that most of the film's narrative occurred from the time Donnie was awakened in his bed, either by Frank's voice, or the faint sound of the 707 engine whistling and plummeting down toward his bedroom. Time was compressed, like in THE INCIDENT AT OWL CREEK BRIDGE on the Twilight Zone, a sort of Alice through the Looking Glass dream squeezed into those precious elongated seconds.

This film poses more questions than it offers answers for. There are theories that we, as spiritual entities, can sustain more than one version of our "Self" in parallel dimensions similtaneously. Somehow, it seemed that Donnie called on one of his alternate selves to swing through those last few brief moments, those seconds that stretched out into 30 days. Perhaps time is relative, and does not exist on the other side. I think this movie requires several viewings to begin to be fully appreciated. It is an original vision, bizarre yet strangely familiar, and immediate with it's punch to the emotional gut. It is eccentric, yet appealing.

5-0 out of 5 stars AMAZING
i didn't know a movie could change your life, 'till i saw donnie darko. this movie is stunning, it grabs you, i highly reccommend it. unbelievable soundtrack too, gary jules, joy division, echo in the bunnymen, 5 stars. see it. ... Read more


7. 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
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Asin: B0002JJBZO
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 163
Average Customer Review: 3.33 out of 5 stars
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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


8. The Rocky Horror Picture Show (Single Disc Edition)
Director: Jim Sharman
list price: $14.98
our price: $11.24
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Asin: B00006D295
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 733
Average Customer Review: 4.47 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (291)

4-0 out of 5 stars 'The Rocky Horror Show' Movie
There is one reason why everyone should see "The Rocky Horror Picture Show": it is the best cult film ever made. There are also three reasons why everyone should want to watch it: 1) It is one of the only 'R' rated musicals in existence. 2) It has strong science-fiction overtones. 3) It is very funny. The movie starts Barry Bostwick and Susan Sarandon (before they were stars) as the recently engaged Brad and Janet. However, they are upstaged in nearly every scene by Tim Curry who plays Frank N. Furter, the mad doctor. The cast delightfully performs many memorable songs including "Over at the Frankenstein Place" and, of course, the "Time Warp". To fully enjoy RHPS, one must not be closed minded or the picture could prove to be quite offensive. Don't think it's gratuitously violent- it isn't. Merely, the situations the characters find themselves in could shock or appall overly sensitive viewers. If you think you won't enjoy RHPS, going to a midnight screening might be your best bet. The live audience participation will guarantee you a good time, despite your opinion of the actual film. So overall, RHPS is quite a good adaptation of Richard O'Brien's original concept, which always honors its roots on the stage.

5-0 out of 5 stars DVD = Perfect format to truly experience "Rocky" at home
I loved going to "Rocky Horror" when I was in college, but watching on home video just wasn't the same. I'm probably committing heresy but there's a reason why this sci-fi, horror, B-movie satire, rock musical didn't really make it big until theaters started showing it as a midnight movie and fans started attending in costume and talking back to the screen. The 25th anniversary DVD, with several audience participation options, really is the next best thing to being there.

For the uninitiated, "Rocky Horror" tells the story of two clean-cut American youths, uptight Brad Majors (Barry Bostwick of "Spin City") and Janet Weiss (Susan Sarandon of "Dead Man Walking") whose car breaks down on a dark, deserted road in the middle of a storm--the classic beginning to many horror movies--and who seek help at a nearby castle. Castles, as Rocky fans know, don't have phones! What this castle has instead is a cross-dressing mad scientist Frank-N-Furter Tim Curry, in perhaps his finest performance), two very creepy servants, Riff-Raff (Richard O'Brien, who wrote the musical) and Magenta (Patricia Quinn), and various other hangers-on, including lovers Columbia (Little Nell) and biker Eddie (Meat Loaf). Brad and Janet walk in on a party celebrating the creation of Frank-N-Furter's muscle-bound boy-toy "Rocky." Bed-hopping chaos soon ensues, until the servants reveal their true identities and take control.

Punctuating this wacky plot are some of the wildest rock-musical songs ever written. In addition to the classic "Time Warp," there's O'Brien's salute to cult-classic B-movies, "Science Fiction Double Feature," Meat Loaf's "Hot Patootie," and Sarandon ode to sexual self-discovery, "Toucha Toucha Touch Me!"

So much for the "Rocky virgin" portion of the review... What makes the DVD so exceptional is the chance to experience "Rocky Horror" at home nearly like you would in the theater. The DVD has the option of turning on the audience screen comments as well as another option for viewing members of the Rocky Horror Fan Club performing select scenes before returning to the main movie. For those less familiar with audience participation, the DVD can prompt when to throw toast, toilet paper, rice, etc., light a match, put your newspaper on your head, etc.

The second disc contains fascinating interviews with cast members, where fans can find out about their reaction to starring in this cult classic. Meat Loaf's description of not realizing what "Rocky Horror" was going to be about and running out of the theater when Tim Curry entered wearing fishnet stockings, spiked heels, a merry widow, and a leather jacket and singing "Sweet Transvestite" is hysterical. Patricia Quinn talks about how her fondness for the opening song, "Science Fiction Double Feature" made her want to take the role even though she hadn't read the rest of the script. What? Don't remember Quinn singing that number? In the stage versions she did, but the song got reassigned in the film version--and Quinn makes her feelings about that QUITE clear. Sarandon makes the interesting observation that "Rocky Horror" probably kept a lot of art house theaters in business over the years, since they could count on good revenue from the midnight movie, even if the latest regular-hours offering flopped. In Bostwick's interview, however, the actor sounds a bit like William Shatner giving his anti-Trekkie diatribe on "Saturday Night Live."

The only disappointments on the DVD are that the outtakes really aren't that interesting and actor bios aren't provided. I would have liked to see what else the "minor" cast members did after Rocky, but that information is limited to a few lines in the companion booklet. Also, some of the audience-participation comments are nearly impossible to understand because fans are talking over each other. But then that's part of the modern-day theater experience. Even Sarandon noted in her interview that talking back to the screen has gone from the more unison catechism approach to a loud free-for-all.

What seemed so risqué and shocking a few decades ago seems much more innocent today, but it was great when it all began and it's still great! If you've never ventured into the theater to experience "Rocky Horror," this is the best way to experience it at home.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mesmerizing film.
This is a very outrageous movie. The rock is the background to tell us a horror movie but also spiced with sex , ransvestism and above all a splendid tribute to the movies specially King Kong .
One couple strands in an old house full of weirdos . This movie (here between you and me)could have inspired for Tim Burton in Beetle juice .
In this decade there were great visuals films too . Sherman built a magnificent story absolutely free , intelligent and sarcastic, irreverent and bitter . You might state that Fellini's influence (dressed of english manners and clothes) is present all along the film .
Inmediatly after its release this one acquired the status of cult movie.

5-0 out of 5 stars The original is still the best!
Don't bother with the play, or the music from the play. The original is still the best. Nobody can fill the shoes of Sarandon, Curry, etc. They originated the roles and have been associated with them for far too long for anyone else to come in try to change them so many years later and attempt to redo them. Stay with the best.

1-0 out of 5 stars Those Gold Shorts!
Ahhhhh...Rocky had such a lovely outline showing in his gold lame shorts. ... Read more


9. Star Trek The Original Series - The Complete Second Season
list price: $129.99
our price: $97.49
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Asin: B0002JJBZE
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 317
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

The most famous episode in franchise history, "The Trouble with Tribbles," is one of the highlights of the second season of Star Trek: The Original Series.A deserved classic, the humorous story centers on an ever-expanding mass of furry creatures that memorably rain themselves down on top of Captain Kirk (William Shatner) and into the middle of a Federation-Klingon showdown. It inspired one of the most memorable episodes in the spin-off series Deep Space Nine, "Trial and Tribble-ations."Also in the second season, the Vulcan culture of Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy) is fleshed out in "Amok Time" (in which Spock is faced with the possibility of killing his captain and friend) and "Journey to Babel" (introducing Spock's father, played by Mark Sarek, in what would turn out to be a long-recurring role).A new character, navigator Pavel Chekov (Walter Koenig), was introduced; his Monkees haircut was intended to appeal to the younger audience, but he was also a Russian, which at the height of the cold war reflected Gene Roddenberry's optimistic vision of a more enlightened future.Other social-commentary opportunities presented themselves in "The Omega Glory," "The Doomsday Machine," and "Assignment: Earth," the last also one of those periodic opportunities to scrimp on the budget by time-traveling to an earlier version of Earth.Another example was "A Private Little War," a comic episode set in the Roaring Twenties and memorable for, among other things, Kirk's teaching a made-up card game called Fizzbin.In other significant episodes, "I, Mudd" saw the return of the bounder from season 1, "The Changeling" was the original inspiration for the first Trek feature film a decade later, "Wolf in the Fold" (penned by the author of Psycho) provides an example of the series' great writing, and "Mirror, Mirror" introduced the concept of the parallel universe inhabited by vicious, amoral counterparts of the regular crew, another theme later borrowed (more than once, and to good emotional effect) by DS9.

Special features are a bit lighter than on the season 1 set, but they do feature such contributors as Shatner, Nimoy, George Takei (Sulu), Koenig, Nichelle Nichols (Uhura), and editor-writer D.C. Fontana. Of chief interest are "To Boldly Go," a 20-minute season recap; " Kirk, Spock & Bones: The Great Trio," discussing the interplay among Kirk, Spock, and Dr. McCoy (DeForest Kelley); "Star Trek's Divine Diva," shining the spotlight on the development of Nichols's character (she was originally considered to play Spock); and "Writer's Notebook: D.C. Fontana," discussing her various roles in the series (she used her initials to avoid the anti-female bias in science fiction at the time).--David Horiuchi ... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Second 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 26 episodes of the second season are being released together on 8 disks. 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 second 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 second 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.

The most memorable episodes of the second season include "Amok Time" (Spock's Vulcan mating ritual), "The Changeling" (the inspiration for the 1979 film "Star Trek: The Motion Picture"), "Mirror, Mirror", "The Apple", "The Doomsday Machine" (with guest star William Windom as Commodore Matthew Decker, the father of the character Capt. Willard Decker (Stephen Collins) in the 1979 film "Star Trek: The Motion Picture"), "I, Mudd" (with returning guest character Harcourt Fenton 'Harry' Mudd, as played by Roger C. Carmel, 1932-1986), "Journey to Babel" (which introduces Spock's parents: Ambassador Sarek as played by Mark Leonard (1924-1996) and his human wife Amanda as played by Jane Wyatt), "Friday's Child", "The Deadly Years", "Obsession", "Wolf in the Fold", the fan-favorite "The Trouble with Tribbles", "A Piece of the Action", "The Immunity Syndrome", "A Private Little War", "Return to Tomrrow" (with guest character Dr. Ann Mulhall as played by Diana Muldaur, who also played the unpopular character Dr. Katherine Pulaski in the second season of "Star Trek: The Next Generation"), "By Any Other Name", "The Ultimate Computer" and "Assignment: Earth". The were no truly awful episodes during the second season, but there were a few that had rather weak plots, including the ancient-Greek-inspired "Who Mourns for Adonais?" the gothic "Catspaw", the Nazi-inspired "Patters of Force" and the twentieth-century version of the Roman Empire in the episode "Break and Circuses". The episode "The Omega Glory" was rather good until the final scenes that are somewhat corny.

Overall, I rate the 8-DVD set of "Star Trek: Original Series Season 2" with an anticipatory 5 out of 5 stars. Clearly, this is how Paramount should have released the original series to begin with. Thank you Gene Roddenberry for taking all of us "where no man has gone before".

5-0 out of 5 stars The pinnicle of TOS
After barely getting renewed for a second season, ST came back the next year in full force.The biggest hero was not Captain Kirk himself,but Gene Coon.The executive producer who contributed some of the best episodes, as well as set the tone for the show which inspired future Trek's as well.
One of the prime factors for the second season's brilliance was the charater's themselves as the actors found the tone of their characters.And the famous trio of Kirk-Spock -McCoy were finally established at the focal point of the show.The remaining supporting characters performed admirably as well, even with the introduction of Paval Chekov (Walter Keonig). Many classic episodes came from season two(Mirror,Mirror, Amok Time, Doomsday Machine, Deadly Years,Trouble With Tribbles, A Piece Of The Action, Journey to Babel).
As brilliant as season two was, it was not enough to get high numbers in the Nielsons.Thanks to a letter campaign by fans led by Bjo Trimble,ST was renewed for a third season.But with Coon's departure from the show after the second season,the third season suffered and even the fans couldn't save it. ... Read more


10. Star Wars Trilogy (Full Screen Edition)
Director: George Lucas, Irvin Kershner, Richard Marquand
list price: $69.98
our price: $41.99
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Asin: B0001YRVN4
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 13
Average Customer Review: 3.84 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (777)

4-0 out of 5 stars I love the Star Wars Trilogy S.E., warts and all...
I'm somewhat ambivalent about the Special Edition versions of the Star Wars trilogy. On one hand, I rather like the idea that Lucas decided to re-tool the legendary saga more towards his original vision of how he wanted them to look, using modern movie magic technology that had just been a far-off dream when he originally produced these films . On the other hand, I also feel that one should just accept a movie's shortcomings, despite the stature of legend they have attained, and just get on with life. But, I must admit that a lot of the enhancements and expansions worked fairly well, and looked convincing in most cases. Unfortunately, not ALL of the new moments passed muster in my eyes...

I was finally glad that some of the Biggs Darklighter footage was restored to Star Wars (aka prior to the Death Star run). For many years I've heard about these cut scenes- Biggs and Luke talking about the future on Uncle Owen's moisture farm, and the hangar reunion- and had high hopes of finally seeing them. Unfortunately, only the hangar reunion was put back in. The moisture farm intro may well be forever lost...

Another weird addition was Greedo firing first before Han plugged him from under the table in the Cantina. Talk about revisionist history! And the new Jabba scene didn't look that great to me. The CGI Jabba looks a bit too smooth. He was a good sight more wrinkled and warty in both Episode I (Before Star Wars) and Return of the Jedi. Also, you do NOT step on the tail of the most influential crime lord on the planet! I mean, I know they had to tweak the scene to make it work, but still! That should've called for Han's execution right there! Hey, is that Boba Fett hangin' out in the hangar with Jabba? Cool, now he's in all three films!

Then there's that concentric ring of energy that flies outward after the explosions of both Alderaan and the Death Star. Aside from being an unnecessary embellishment, I found this little addition to lack originality as well. This same effect was used in the opening of 'Star Trek VI'. Whoops... I just mentioned 'Star Trek' in a 'Star Wars' review... so much for renewing my fan club membership! Heh...

'Empire' has the fewest changes of the three. The only part I have a problem with are the scenes of Vader boarding his shuttle on Cloud City following his battle with Luke, then exiting his shuttle onto his flagship. Like the explosion rings, I found this to be an unnecessary embellishment; I already got the drift about how he got to his ship from Cloud City, all right? There's also a slight change of dialogue in one scene, following R2D2 getting spat out by the swamp monster in Dagobah. See if you can tell the difference!

I don't have too many complaints about the "improvements" done to Return Of The Jedi, aside from yet another energy ring expanding from the explosion of the second Death Star. The new Jabba's Palace band was pretty neat, but I still prefer the original three-piece band from the original version. I guess I'm just a sentimental kinda guy. There were a few scenes cut from the original release I was hoping to see (Vader force-strangling an Imperial Guard who blocks his attempts to speak with the Emperor, and an Imperial officer being punished by another Imperial guard for insubordination)... no such luck. The expanded Ewok celebration at the end was pretty neat to watch, and included an all-new John Williams composition that has become my second-favorite 'Star Wars' tune (right behind 'The Imperial March- Darth Vader's Theme', from The Empire Strikes Back of course).

I'm not an absolutist about the widescreen format, but in the case of the Star Wars trilogy, it's an absolute necessity. There's just too much happening on both sides of the screen, and you're likely to miss something important. In this case wider IS better.

I just wish they'd finally release these movies on DVD. Like many of the other Amazon reviewers, I too am getting a bit fed up of the constant VHS re-releases. Let's get with the times here!

'Late!

5-0 out of 5 stars Best DVD's Ever
When the Star Wars trilogy arrives on DVD on September 21, the digitally remastered and restored films will be accompanied by over 10 hours of bonus material that goes inside the making of these classic movies.

Each film resides on its own disc, with sharp, pristene imagery restored and remastered by Lowry Digital Images, and the rich sound experience of the saga presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround EX. The films also include new commentary tracks, featuring insights from George Lucas, director Irvin Kershner, actress Carrie Fisher, sound designer Ben Burtt, and Industrial Light & Magic's Dennis Muren.

The fourth disc is packed with bonus material, the most notable being Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy. This two-and-a-half hour documentary traces the evolution of the saga, from a low-budget labor-of-love space saga to the movie phenomenon that defied the odds and reinvented the rules.

This comprehensive documentary features all new interviews with George Lucas and more than 40 members of the cast and crew from the original trilogy, as well as a host of filmmakers and media personalities. Empire of Dreams includes some never-before-seen behind-the-scenes footage from the making of the three films.

Other material on the fourth disc includes:

Episode III Behind the Scenes Preview: The Return of Darth Vader: Finally, Star Wars: Episode III will reveal just how Anakin Skywalker became Darth Vader, the most iconic villain in film history. In this exclusive preview, George Lucas discusses Anakin's descent, with a first look at the new Vader costume forged for Episode III. Also, experience how Hayden Christensen and Ewan McGregor have prepared for the epic lightsaber battle that has been anticipated for more than two decades: the climactic showdown between Anakin and Obi-Wan Kenobi.

The Birth of the Lightsaber: Its unforgettable hum and scintillating glow are instantly recognizable around the world. Now, viewers will discover the origins of this elegant weapon from a more civilized age in this documentary devoted to the lightsaber.

The Characters of Star Wars: An in-depth look at how favorite characters came to be, featuring rare concept art, behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with George Lucas and the cast and crew who shaped the screen's favorite heroes.

The Force Is With Them: The Legacy of Star Wars: Star Wars opened up a galaxy of possibilities to a generation of filmmakers and creative talents. Hear from some of the most notable filmmakers of our time about how influential the Star Wars movies have been to their lives.

Star Wars Battlefront Trailer and Playable Demo: The fourth disc will offer a trailer featuring an exciting look at the upcoming Star Wars Battlefront video game from LucasArts, along with a special demo for Xbox users that lets players fight the Battle of Endor as a Rebel or Imperial soldier and drive AT-STs, ride speeder bikes and use different weapons to lead their side to victory. The full version of Star Wars Battlefront will also be released Sept. 21 for the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and PC.

Star Wars: Episode III Making the Game Preview: Video-game players will be able to experience the stunning Jedi action of Episode III themselves in the new Star Wars: Episode III game, due out in Spring 2005 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox. This special feature shows how game developers at LucasArts worked behind-the-scenes and on the set to create the most authentic Jedi experience ever.

Original Trailers and TV Spots: The original theatrical teaser, launch and re-release trailers for each film, plus TV spots, are featured on the DVD.

Never-Before-Seen Production Gallery: Delve into an unseen corners of the Lucasfilm Archives with exclusive photos from the making of the trilogy, with hundreds of rare behind-the-scene images.

Posters and Print Campaigns: The original releases of the Star Wars films came at a time when international campaigns produced a wealth of intriguing, alternative poster art. Explore a collection of theatrical posters from around the world.

Exclusive DVD-ROM Content: The Star Wars Trilogy DVDs are keys that unlock exclusive content available only through a special DVD-ROM website.

5-0 out of 5 stars M-I-G-H-T-Y F-I-N-E
the star wars trilogy was byfar the best trilogy I have ever seen!!!!!!!!!!!!!! all of the star wars movies were MIGH-TY FINE, and to the guy that said star wars was a LOTR rippoff, I can't see where you are going with your story, its nothing like LOTR, and I for one are one of those people you were talking about and as long as the star wars movies come out i'll help make Lucas richer!!

5-0 out of 5 stars A Classic!
I just recently purchased a DVD player and knew that the Star Wars Trilogy would have to be in my collection ASAP. Of course I've these three movies many, many times, but for some reason I never tire of seeing them again. The first one brings back many childhood memories (my brother had a Star Wars themed bedroom!) and it's comforting to put it on just to have as background noise when my apartment gets too quiet. I guess that is the true meaning of a classic movie - you love it so much that it becomes a part of yourself.

The added interviews and such on this DVD were pretty insightful to me and the bonus disc of "never before seen" footage from making the three movies had me giddy with delight!

I can't imagine anyone not wanting to have this set in their collection!

2-0 out of 5 stars Lord of The RIngs Ripoff!!!
The Star Wars legacy was directly stolen from The Lord of The Rings novels, which were publised in the 1950s. It's shameless, I tell you, shameless!

First there's Luke Skywalker, who has to leave behind his friends to face the evil all alone. But he gets to take along a little droid named R2-D2. This is obviously based on Frodo Baggins and Samwise Gamgee in Lord of the Rings. Then there are the wise Jedi Masters, Yoda and Obi Wan Kanobe. These two characters were obviously based on Tolkien's Gandalf.

Han Solo is a carbon copy of Aragorn. Princess Liea, the warrior hottie, is a ripoff of Eowyn in the Lord of the Rings. Chewbacca is just a ripoff of Gimli. And what about Boba Fett, the mysterious loner who is loyal to no one, who is only out for himself? This is just a ripoff of Gollum. The Death Star is really Mount Doom. Darth Vader is Saruman, and The Empoeror is Saruman.

And then there's Lando Calrisian, who is stolen from J.R.R. Tolkein's character King Theoden. You know, the cowardly ruler who bow's down to the bad guy, then finds his courage to fight! The storm toopers are just Orcs. And the most shameless ripoff of all is the Imperial Walkers in Empire Strikes Back! They are just like the Mumakil monsters in Lord of the Rings.

I can't believe how George Lucas become so filthy rich through thievery!! ... Read more


11. Star Wars - Clone Wars, Vol. 1 (Animated)
Director: Genndy Tartakovsky
list price: $19.98
our price: $13.99
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Asin: B0006Z2LMO
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 824
Average Customer Review: 4.56 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars AWESOME MINI-SERIES!
If this doesn't come out on DVD, I'd be so mad. Sammari Jack was an awesome show, and Star Wars with Sammari Jack influence is an amazing experience. I taped all but four episodes, two of which were the best ones, so I'd really like it if they'd make this, and so do you. Trust me.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fills in the Gaps
I found that this series filed in a lot of gaps, similar to the Episode 1 explanation of Midaclorians (sp?). The fast paced, serialized structure of the serries is very interesting. I love how I suddenly "jumped to the edge of my seat", ok recliner, on several occasions. I can't wait for the DVD to be released!

2-0 out of 5 stars Just like the new movies good action bad plot
Terrible, Terrible, Terrible!
This series suffers from the same problems as the new movies, horrible plot, and a perversion of the characters from the original series. Just like the new movies the action was cool and I enjoyed every lightsaber battle, but I never cared who won. In fact the obi-wan in the new movies was more recognizable than the blood thirsty general they portray him as here. This series is at its best when it is just long dialogue free battles, but then why not just watch Samurai Jack at least that has characters I care about and it doesn't further tarnish the universe of Star Wars.

5-0 out of 5 stars RELEASE ON DVD!!!!
Even the "making of" was excellent! I can't stand the suspense! I've recorded every episode in order and transferred to VCD, but I'd much rather have a crisp, clean picture and 5.1 sound so that I can feel the thrusters of Anakin's ship knocking me back in my seat! THX sound would be fantastic for this movie (since it is, more or less, episode 2.5). I find it more entertaining than Episode II, and it cleans up some of the loose ends that would have been forgotten with the release of Episode III. Genndy, is a genius! Lucas, you're a great man for allowing this to be made! Just take the next inevitable step and release it on DVD at least in time for Christmas!

5-0 out of 5 stars George Lucas, you better be taking notes . . .
Having grown up with the original trilogy (I was born May 25, 1977. No joke. Look it up SW fans), I have to say that so far the prequals have NOT been Star Wars films at all. They do not capture the essence of the original trilogy.
However, these little cartoons, these Clone Wars 'toons bring the magic and essence of Star Wars back to Star Wars. They are worthy of the original trilogy. The writing and stories are exciting and action packed (wow, even space battles! Seems Mr. Lucas forgot about the space battles in the prequels), the acting is better than the actors in the prequels (except Ewan McGregor) and the voices are dead on. If you haven't seen these - go to the website and stream them. When the DVD comes out, it will have a perminate place right next to the original trilogy. ... Read more


12. Doctor Who - The Key to Time - The Complete Adventure
list price: $124.98
our price: $99.98
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Asin: B000067FPE
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 2682
Average Customer Review: 4.35 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

The Key to Time: The Complete Adventure encompasses one of the more ambitious chapters in the history of the long-running BBC television series Doctor Who, and its landmark status, combined with the presence of the well-loved Tom Baker in the title role, should make this six-disc boxed set irresistible to Who fans. The 26-episode series was conceived by producer Graham Williams, who was intrigued by the idea of a season-long story arc, and after several setbacks he finally achieved it in 1978-79 for the program's 16th season. In The Key to Time, the Doctor and his new companion, the elegant and sharp-witted Time Lady Romana (Mary Tamm) are dispatched by the White Guardian to recover the six segments of the Key of Time, a powerful device with the ability to stop time. The Doctor and Romana must travel the universe to find the hidden segments before the nefarious Black Guardian discovers them. Their adventures bring them in contact with a host of unusual personalities and, in a time-honored Doctor Who tradition, a number of terrifying monsters.

Unlike the other Doctor Who DVDs from BBC America, The Key to Time: The Complete Adventure is debuting in North America rather than the United Kingdom, the reason being that the Baker serials have proven more popular with American audiences. And while offering somewhat fewer supplemental features than the previous releases, the boxed set is a rare opportunity to own an entire season of Doctor Who at one time. For fans of the series and Baker in particular, The Key to Time: The Complete Adventure is a must-have. --Paul Gaita ... Read more

Reviews (34)

5-0 out of 5 stars A great way to spend ten hours or so ...
The Key to Time is an excellent series of adventures featuring everyone's favorite Doctor, Tom Baker (though in all truthfulness it's the other Doctor named Baker, Colin, who is my own personal favorite). This boxed set gives us all six adventures in that paricular season, divided out of twenty-six short-ish episodes (laying all the pieces together, end to end, will give you about ten hours of viewing time, not counting special features). This gives us a nice range of stories told in various different styles which means that who(m)ever gets their hands on this will have a nice sampling of the various different kinds of tales Doctor Who is capable of telling, while a common theme pervades throughout each one to unite them.

Through the course of six adventures, the Doctor and his new assistant, Romana (played by the gorgeous Mary Tamm), together with a robotic dog named K-9 (the pun has been completely lost on me, I realize now, after so many years of Who viewing) travel throughout time and the universe in search of six segments to a powerful artifact known as the Key of Time which is capable of providing it's keeper with absolute power over all that exists/has existed/ever will exist. Luckily, in order to use the key of time one has to be powerful enough to be able to put it to use, and out of all that exists there exist only two beings capable of doing this. Unforunately (and inevitably), one of them is pure evil, and if the Key falls into his hands... well, you get the picture.

Of the six, my favorite has to be the first, "The Ribos Operation", set on a Medieval-esque planet that is just on the verge of an astronomic revolution, while contrary to most people's opinions, my second favorite is the fourth, "The Androids of Tara", also set on a Medieval-esque planet but in specific, hidden ways technologically superior to our own time. Going onto a tangent that includes a minor complaint extending not just to these six stories but much of the entire series: a question arises when one considers just how earth-like each of the planets the Doctor visits, as far as flora and fauna and inhabitants go... How can we explain this? Either a tremendous coincidence is at work, or each planet was long ago terraformed or colonized by humans in the distant, distant past. I would have enjoyed at least some small attempt to make the sights and sounds of each less developed planet at least a LITTLE alien (the swamp environment of Power of Kroll was a step in the right direction, but what if the plants were all tinted blue or even purple? Why should the skies always be blue?). Of course, in letting this little factoid bother me I'm stepping away from the point of Doctor Who, which is of course good, imaginative, and exciting stories, all of which are entirely present in each of the stories we're given.

Incidentally, three and a half stories I realize now are excempt from my little complaint, at least only as far as the setting goes: "The Pirate Planet" (penned by "Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy" author Douglas Adams) is fine because it's set on a technologically advanced planet quite a few steps ahead of present day earth; "Stones of Blood" is set on modern-day (read, mid-seventies) Earth; and the final tale, the extended epic "The Armageddon Factor", is once again set on a trio of planets with a highly developed technological society. The half comes with "Power of Kroll", as the fact that the humans in the story specifically are descendants of colonists from Earth is stated more than once as the narrative progresses.

Also, a familiar face guest stars as one of the villains in "The Armageddon Factor": the Marshall is played by John Woodvine, who(m) I immediately recognized as the doctor (lower-case "d") from John Landis' classic "An American Werewolf in London", one of my favorite movies. Just cool to see him, nothing really more than that.

The main reason to own these stories is for the stories themselves... extras aren't such a big deal to me, but we're still given a few, which I appreciate. Each story has a commentary track (with Tom Baker on three of them), plus a few actor bios and behind the scenes photographs. Good enough for me. I would like to mention the covers on each DVD case... my gosh but they're awful! Compare any of the covers from the Key of Time series with other DVDs from BBC's Doctor Who line... they could have done a lot better if they'd tried. But as it's what's inside that counts, that won't go against my perfect five-star rating.

All in all, "The Key of Time" is an excellent smorgasbord of Doctor Who adventures, with something unique to turn to for every day of the week. You'll get some great humor, some interesting ideas, and some lovely acting, and you will have a lot of fun in the process. Buy it today! (and thank you for reading these random, disorganized thoughts)

Carry on Carry on,

MN

5-0 out of 5 stars An Ambitious Box Set Release: Includes Full DVD Descriptions
The BBC has gone all out with this Dr. Who DVD set of Season 16 "The Key To Time". The great thing about these DVDs is that they all have commentary and Tom Baker himself has done commentary on half of them. This is great compared to other show DVD releases. How many Star Trek Episodes or Movies have commentary by any of the actual stars of the show? (NONE) Here's a description of the stories and extras you'll get in this package...

The Ribos Operations- A pretty good Robert Holms Story about greed for a valuable mineral set in a medieval type culture.
Commentary by Tom Baker and Mary Tamm(Romana). Text commentaries/trivia and photo galleries.

The Pirate Planet- This is the Gem of season 16. One fo the great Douglas Adams Dr. Whos. It's about a planet that continuously experiences economic boons whose native's never bother to question why. The Doctor must face the extremely loud and boisterous Captain to find the answers. Wonderfully humorous dialogue and one of the few Whos that can hold the interest of non fans.
Commentary by Director Pennant Roberts and Bruce Purchase (the Captain) Text commentaries/trivia and photo galleries plus several minutes of additional footage from the location shoots.

The Stones Of Blood- Another excellent story (from a dialogue perspective at least). Satan worshippers pray to giant stones which can move across the countryside sucking the life out of people. There's even a decent slasher film type scene with a couple camping in the woods.
Commentary by Mary Tamm and director Darrol Blake Text commentaries/trivia and photo galleries.

The Androids of Tara- A swashbuckling adventure about an alien civilization who's garb look medieval but who also employ android technology. Kind of silly but kind of fun.
Commentary by Tom Baker, Mary Tamm and director Michael Hayes Text commentaries/trivia and photo galleries.

The Power of Kroll- The worst one of the season. Laugh as the green painted swampies worship the giant latex Squid. Be warned... at any moment the giant rubber tentacle could come and drag someone away! Kind of like the gong show.
Commentary Tom Baker and John Leeson (K9) Text commentaries/trivia and photo galleries.

The Armageddon Factor- The final battle for the Key To Time. Can the Doctor defeat the mysterious Shadow? I always found the Shadow to be incredibly scary although it doesn't make up for the fact that they could've probably cut a half hour out of this.
Commentary by Mary Tamm, director Michael Hayes and John Woodvine (the Marshal). Text commentaries/trivia and photo galleries.

3-0 out of 5 stars Certainly the Doctors' LONGEST adventure...
When an actor such as Tom Baker stays with a show like Dr. Who for seven years, it's inevitable that the show will undergo a few changes and the biggest changes were the different producers. Phillip Hinchcliffe produced Bakers first three seasons, the best of the entire history of the show, in my opinion, which focused on the gothic horror elements of sci-fi and was top notch. John Nathan Turner produced Baker's last year, featuring a slightly more sedate and possibly more tired Doctor as he neared his regeneration into Peter Davison's version (also, Baker was in ill health for a stretch during the final season which accounted for his changed physical appearance). But Baker's 4th thru 6th seasons were helmed by Graham Williams, who had the unenviable task of veering away from the popular, scary and brilliant Hinchcliffe stories and had to go in a more slapstick, dumbed-down direction for the kids. Well, he succeeded. There are some nice elements in some of the different Key to time adventures and it was a bold move to do an entire season under the umbrella of one idea---the quest for the six segments to the key to time. I think I may have liked it even more if I hadn't been so used to the magnificent Hinchcliffe era shows. Williams era had a lot of silliness and of course, K9. It also featured some of the very lamest Who such as "Horns of Nimon". All in all, the Key to time is a good addition to the DVDs although I would have voted for many more early Hinchcliffe/Baker episodes to come ouot before these.

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the greatest of the Doctor's adventures
There are a few Doctor Who story arcs which are inarguable classics. This one is possibly the best of them all. The Doctor, fresh from rescuing Gallifrey from invasion by the Sontarans and having just left his companion Leela there to marry Andred, is suddenly diverted to a meeting with the White Guardian of Time, who has a tremendously urgent mission: Find and assemble the pieces of the immeasurably powerful artifact, the Key to Time. To assist him, the Doctor is given a new companion, the Timelady Romanavoradtralundar (Romana for short), and the two begin a huge quest to locate the hidden pieces of the Key -- which can literally be anything, ranging from a creature to a stone to an entire planet. Once assembled, the Key will be used to make minor adjustments to Creation in order to keep things working smoothly... unless it is the Black, rather than the White, Guardian who gets hold of the Key first!

4-0 out of 5 stars More hours of pleasure than I can calculate
The Dvd's have commentary, some with Tom Baker! That is endless enjoyment. Then you have the text commentary, fanstastic. The only thing I find missing is easter eggs. :( I hope they remember when comming out with future dvd's what fun those are to have. ... Read more


13. Star Wars Ewok Adventures - Caravan of Courage (aka The Ewok Adventure) / The Battle for Endor
Director: Ken Wheat, Jim Wheat
list price: $14.98
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Asin: B0002YCUR0
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 345
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14. Star Wars - Episode I, The Phantom Menace (Full Screen Edition)
Director: George Lucas
list price: $29.98
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Asin: B00006JDU9
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 5153
Average Customer Review: 3.48 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (2449)

5-0 out of 5 stars 5 stars for DVD quality, 3 stars for the movie
I'm reviewing only the DVD, and not the movie itself, which was a bit of a stinker, in my opinion. Well produced, beautifully filmed, but very poorly written.

Anyway - this is an awesome and incredibly well done DVD. Lots and lots of extras. Great commentary by Lucas, the producer, the sound man, etc. Interview with the composer. Lots and lots and LOTS of background materials on the making of the film, and the entire process of putting it together from initial writing to final production, and the making of the DVD itself.

The image of the movie is *very* crisp and clean. The deleted scenes are a nice addition to the movie. I am very impressed (and surprised, to be cynical about it) that Lucas has given us the full-featured DVD the first time out, and not offered us one scaled down DVD version, only to offer us a better version in a year, and then the full-scale one a year after that, like he's constantly done with the VHS versions of his movies. Thank you, Lucas, for taking care of your fans this time, and not trying to pad your pockets a few times before giving the fans what they *really* want.

Quality-wise, this is absolutely one of the most loaded, best-featured DVDs I have in my collection.

(as a p.s. - after hearing Lucas' commentary, and talking about some things coming up in the next movies, I have realized that a few things I criticized about this movie actually make sense oin terms of the upcoming story-line. However, I still think that, overall, the writing for this movie was only a cut above old b-movies)

4-0 out of 5 stars OK Movie, Great DVD
The Phantom Menace was probably the most heavily anticipated movie in history. It was the prequel to the original Star Wars series and George Lucas was taking the helm as director for the first time since Star Wars in 1977. The film was hyped incessantly and, of course, the final product failed to live up to the expectations. The Phantom Menace is not a bad film. It actually is absolutely amazing to look at and the special effects are incredible. The problem with the film is the plot. It seems disjointed as it bounces around from scene to scene. It seems that Mr. Lucas was to preoccupied with getting the film to look right than the actual story (which is what made the first Star Wars so great). Many people weren't happy with the casting of several roles, especially Ewan MacGregor as Obi Won Kenobi, but he does a decent job in an undeveloped role. Liam Neeson is commanding as Qui Gon Jin and Natalie Portman is quite good as Queen Amadala. The biggest complaint that most people had with the film was with the character of Jar Jar Binks and I won't disagree with most of what's been said about the annoying character. Mr. Lucas has previously shunned the DVD arena (American Graffiti is the only one of his films to appear in the format), but he goes about this release with a vengeance. The extras, including seven deleted scenes, are worth buying this DVD alone. Mr. Lucas spent an additional four million dollars on them and the money is well spent.

5-0 out of 5 stars prequel?
in this one,there is a council of jedis who rule everything and keep the peace.yoda,ben,some black dude and on like that.a younger ben finds a little kid-who is called anakan and later vadar.that kid wins his freedom with bens help in a very cool pod race.ben recognizes the force in the little one and decides to train him as a jedi.the bad guy is darth maul who has a double bladed light saber-very cool.hes the coolest looking character yet.i think peple came down too hard on jar-jar.hes a dork but there have been a lot worse.the kids will like it.it is the 4th part but the first episode.everybody should go see this one because just anybody will like it.anakans mom was pretty nice if she cleaned herself up.this movie isnt as good as the tv says but they blow everything all out of proportion anyway.this movie is abselutely incredible though.i think the black dude may be in the matrix too.its good too.the special effects are good.after this there is one more.then there is an animated short film.there is also another one on the way next summer.

2-0 out of 5 stars To Lucas: Eye of the Tiger, Man!!
To quote the famous lines by Apollo Creed from Rocky III, "You lost for all the wrong reasons, you lost your edge. Eye of the tiger, man!"
A good analogy when you think of it...

When Lucas made the first trilogy he was a relativly unknown up-and-comming writer/director full of desire and well, "hunger" to make his mark. That drive lead to the masterpieces of pop culture we know as ANH and ESB. By ROTJ his edge was already waning but thankfully it was the last one... or so we thought.

By the time TPM came out he lost it completely and produced a quite mediocre if at best ordinary film. Living like a king for the past 20+ years made him not "hungry and full of desire" but fat and content. He lost his edge.

Peter Jackson's LOTR Trilogy is so much better than Lucas' last 2 efforts for this same reason. Jackson has the "eye of the tiger"!

Lucas HAS to get his edge back. Most agree AOTC is better than TPM but not by much. Will episode 3 prove that Lucas got it back??

If only reality played out like the fantasy of Rocky III and Lucas brings home a REAL winner....

1-0 out of 5 stars What drug was George Lucas on?
I love Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi. I think that George Lucas should have stopped there. The two movies: The Phantom Menace and the Attack of the Clones....SUCK! What was George Lucas thinking? Jar Jar Binks needs to tossed off the face of the earth, and Hayden Christansen (while hot), needs to take some acting lessons. Not enough special effects in the world could make me want to see the third release. Poor acting and writing have made me want to run for cover! Where's the FORCE when you need it? ... Read more


15. Somewhere in Time - Collector's Edition
Director: Jeannot Szwarc
list price: $14.98
our price: $11.24
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Asin: B00004W46I
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 587
Average Customer Review: 4.49 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (188)

4-0 out of 5 stars It's about time
It may not be one of the best films ever made, but I love it anyway. The scenery and costumes are beautiful...not to mention the beautiful Jane Seymour & Christopher Reeve. But what's fascinating about the movie is element of time travel. It's not that Richard (Christopher Reeves) falls in love with the woman in the picture (Jane Seymour); rather, the picture stirs a remembrance within him. Not realizing what it is at first, Richard seeks answers through research which eventually leads him to the belief that...he was there. Thus the obsession with time travel and the quest to return.

Watch for the details and the glimpses of things in the present and see the connection when he's in the past. For instance, watch his relationship with Arthur.

There are all kinds of details that I appreciate about the movie. Notice the view from Miss McKenna's room at the beginning of the movie and compare that with the view from Mr. Collier's room at the end. Notice the use of camera angle, lighting and furniture (namely the fabric) to transition Richard from the present to the past.

Probably the most disappointing thing about the movie is the ending. But as a hopeless romantic, it's none-the-less a favorite movie.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Love throughout Time
Somewhere in Time is an excellent film that combines Time Travel with romance, using an interesting and unique idea involving hypnotizing your mind to believe you are actually in that moment in history. If you can avoid analyzing the rationality of time travel and suspend your disbelief, this film will be very enjoyable for you. The idea of travelling back through time to find your soulmate is something both men and women can believe in. It is to the credit of the performances of the leads, Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour, that the viewer believes that such a thing is possible. Reeve and Seymour also look well together and have obvious chemistry, making their love affair entirely believable. Especially with their first kiss, there is a deep and passionate love that seems entirely real. The third element is the acting of Christopher Plummer, who is always excellent and quite effective here as the overprotective manager of Seymour's character. But, there are two more elements that contributes greatly to the atmposhere of the film - the moving music composed by John Barry, and the Grand Hotel where most of the movie is set. The handsome and expressive Reeve, the calm beauty of Seymour, the brooding and calculating Plummer, the romantic and moving music and the timeless presence of the Grand Hotel combine into a magical film for the hopeless romantic.

DVD Comments: Compared to reference DVDs the video and audio quality are average, with slight graininess at times. However, this can be forgiven because of the excellent quality of the film. Those who have only seen Pan Scan versions on Cable and VHS will enjoy the widescreen presentation. The extras include a Behind the Scenes Special, Trailer, Fan Club Information, Bios and Production Photos. All are excellent and welcome additons. Of note, I found the Behind the Scenes Special added to the film experience. You will learn interesting tidbits about the making of the movie, with comments by the director, Reeve, Seymour and other players. It becomes readily apparent that the actors and crew loved making this film and hold it in a special place in their hearts. To see Reeve, who suffered a horseback-riding accident that left him paralyzed years after making the film, lends to the heartbreaking experience of seeing the film again. His comments about the final scenes of the film are very interesting and insightful to his own tragic life experience. The production photos are excellent, especially the stills of Seymour with her incredibly beautiful face and long, flowing hair. It is easy to relate and believe that Reeve's character would fall so hopelessly in love with her picture alone. The events that occur in the film, the time travel and events that happen at the end of the film are believable because of Seymour's beauty and acting ability. All of the actors, the setting, and the music are important aspects of the film, but Seymour makes the movie. Therefore, if you are a hopeless romantic, or a fan of Reeve or Seymour, I highly recommend this DVD to you.

4-0 out of 5 stars Get the Ben & Jerry's and settle in...
At times this movie does put the "suspension of disbelief" to the test... it is far-fetched, but enjoyable if you allow yourself to accept the story as it's presented. The acting is ok, the music beautiful and haunting.

This is a great movie for those times when you feel the need to have an emotional outlet. There are some scenes where you can almost think it's a comedy, and then the mood changes to something more serious. The end seemed a little awkward, and is a real tear-jerker if you've let yourself get sucked into the story. With a pint of Ben & Jerry's and a few tissues (and some friends, if you're into sharing tears with them), it's worth the time if you're in the mood.

5-0 out of 5 stars In a Class by Itself
As other reviewers have said, this movie seems to transcend all of its faults and strike a a very personal chord in the romantics among us. Its intense romanticism prompts us to break the rules in judging what makes a good movie, much as Christopher Reeve's love for Jane Seymour allows him break the rules of time. And, the movie is even more poignant today, since it's about going back into the past, and it reminds us of the past physical vibrance of Christopher Reeve, not as Superman, but as the healthy young man he was.

In many ways, this is Reeve's movie. He almost ruins it with his occasional lapses into Clark-Kentish oafishness, but he also injects into the film its dreamy sweetness, with his hungering eyes and his boyish awe of Miss Seymour. Speaking of her, I think she is one of the most beautiful and competent screen actresses in films and I have no idea why she never really became a huge movie star.

Christopher Plummer adds the right notes of meanness, thinly-veiled jealousy, lurking menace, and his own inner hurt as the blunt end of a love triangle. He also embodies reality, reminding us, by his dissapproving presence, of the vulnerability of the fragile love affair between Reeves and Seymour.

The special segment on the making of the film (in the collector's edition DVD) is a good one. It convincingly shows that the director, crew, and cast loved making this film and had high hopes for it. It also provides some interesting insights into how the novel was adapted for the screen and the choices, sometimes painful, that had to be made in the process. It's gratifying that this segment, which is low-key and refreshingly sincere, features the three principal stars of the film, the director, the composer, the author, and other players and crew members. Only the composer, John Barry, seems a bit taken with himself.

Somewhere In Time was nominated for the American Film Institute's list of the 100 most romantic movies of all time, but it didn't make it. As far as I'm concerned, it should have topped the list.

3-0 out of 5 stars Somewhere in Time
I really didn't care for this movie that much.I guess it's just not my genre.The film seemed very boring.The plot is extremely deep and intellect which is probably the only reason it got such a good grade.The dialogue is your usual love/romance dialogue.Everything is just so much like a fantasy that I felt stupid.If this was a book it was probably really well written and this would have been a good adaption, but this just isn't my type of film.I think I would have liked it better with a different cast.Christopher Reeve did a good job ;though.The setting is also nice.That and some of the plot is mainly the only reason it gets a 6.It lies on border line of fresh/rotten.Only check this one out if your a fan of the genre.

"Come back to me." These were the strange words uttered by aged actress Elise McKenna to playwright Richard Collier, and they have haunted him ever since. When he hears that Elise has died, an irresistible impulse leads him to travel to the historic hotel where she lived. There he discovers an old photograph of Elise and realizes, to his amazement, that in another life he was once her lover.
Richard wills himself into the past and meets Elise again, now young and beautiful and acclaimed. Their romance blossoms anew, but not even true love can defeat the power of time... ... Read more


16. Star Wars - Episode II, Attack of the Clones (Full Screen Edition)
Director: George Lucas
list price: $29.98
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Asin: B00006HBUI
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 2289
Average Customer Review: 3.38 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1926)

4-0 out of 5 stars The force is strong with this one.
Star[]Wars! The series has come back into full swing with 'Attack of the Clones.' Everything that 'Phantom Menace' tried to be and more, we return to the rollicking space adventure that made the first three classics. Don't pay attention to the negitive reviews, aside from a little cheese covered romance the goods are delivered in great fashion. 'Attack..' is packed with extremely well lensed action set pieces that remind the viewer of the summer of 1980. The acting is decent and works for the material provided...I mean, this is Star Wars not Shakespere and lines are delivered with intended monotonality; lightsabers speak louder than words and emotion a Jedi does not crave. I found this film to be better than 'Return of the Jedi' due to its return to the swashbuckling action/adverture of the first two movies sans cute little talking kid friendly creatures that help generate mechandise sales for the toddler marketing target group. The special effects are outstanding of course, and the sound effects were really cool. The story was decent enough to get you to care what happens to the heroes and dislike the villians (finally, villians. That seemed to be missing from episode one save Darth Maul who was way underused). All around an excellent chapter in the saga and a great movie in itself. This film makes you look forward to the next installment and the man himself-Darth Vader. Thanks, George for reigniting the magic that was, and is, Star Wars.

5-0 out of 5 stars the best of the star wars movies
in this one,yoda fights.this is truly awesome.anakan is growing up.he goes to get his mom from slavery but shes been killed by these nasty little monsters.so he goes genocidal on them all.ben is tring to teach anakan but hes learning way faster than normal and is quite the showoff.the kids will like it.it is the last full length movie of the set.there is an animated short film after this part called clone wars.the last one is due out next summer.just anybody bwill like it.the chick is a young teen ans ends up being anakans girlfriend.i dont know what you heard but this is an all time great.the special effects are cool.this movie is a classic!

2-0 out of 5 stars Big Trouble In Little Greece: Attack Of The Kung Fu Robots
If I were a movie director and for some reason I decided to undertake the project of making the most grotesque parody and mockery ever made of the original Star Wars trilogy, I would do the following:

First, I would open the movie where the main character of the movie -The Jedi- freefalls some 10,000 stories in a sprawling metropolis, all the while narrowly missing multitudes of careening hovercrafts which literally filled the sky, only to finally land safely inside one of them just in the nick of time, nanoseconds before he was about to slam into the ground.

Secondly, I would include the most bland, personality-less, emotionally-uninspiring actors and actresses I could find. Also, I would incorporate pseudo-Greek cultural and archeological elements throughout the movie (which had no relevancy to the sci-fi theme of the movie) so as to confuse the viewer as to what planet...or planets the movie was taking place in...or what universe and epoch(s) for that matter. I'd include several pseudo-romantic scenes where there wasn't an iota of emotion or chemistry between the two love birds and whose forced, stimulated 'romantic scenes' seemed to serve no purpose, either.

I would then attempt to completely destroy...annhilate the original Star Wars's sacred notion of the force -as being stimulated and channeled by spirituality and mind over matter- and any drama associated with it as well. MY notion would be that the measure of one's force can be determined by analyzing mitochondrial DNA samples to tally the number of antibodies present in the protoplasm.

Next, I would blow away the concept of the original Star Wars's wimpy 2-jedi battle scenes with an epic magnitude-12 mega battle scene which consisted of 10,000 jedis and 100,000 jedi foes engaged in flipping-through the-air somersault kung fu moves that render the likes of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and all '70s special-effects-laden Chinese kung fu flics obsolete. You thought that Luke Skywalker jumping 10 feet out of a carbon freeze container was cool? Could Luke Skywalker stay airborne for 10 seconds all the while throwing barrages of backroundhouse kicks and punches? Screw that punchless Luke Skywalker single-blade lightsaber. Behold, I introduce the double-edged light saber which all jedis are equipped with. FULLY FUNCTIONAL AND OPERATIONAL. Only an elite and intelligent class of human being can be a jedi? Not anymore. Any living, crawling, oozing intelligence-devoid parasite, wingless bat or orc -of any gender-can be a jedi.

Finally, I would end the movie with Kung Fu/Force-Master Yoda defeating the Master Evil Jedi with triple and quintuple cartwheel backroundhouse kicks and punches, while airborne, and lightning-fast Tae Kwan Do slaps and curled finger combinations that would put Jackie Chan to shame. The very last scene of the movie would end with the Evil Jedi Master becoming so angry, because of his defeat, that his head grew to the size of a large balloon, then exploded with the force of 20 grenades. Maybe I'd include that scene only in the UNCUT version.

The result: The sci-fi sequel to "Big Trouble in Little China" -Big Trouble in Little Greece: Attack Of The Kung Fu Robots...or as some people may prefer to call it -Star Wars II: Attack Of The Clones.

2-0 out of 5 stars My Take on Mr. Lucas
OK, here's my rant. I'll keep it brief (unlike some other reviewers)

Best Parts:
1. Phantom Menace - Pod Race, Darth Maul
2. Attack of the Clones - Yoda's lightsaber flight

That's it. Everything else in these films is an utter joke. I could go on for many paragraphs, but I'll spare you. You gotta realize that there was a reason George didn't direct Empire or Jedi. He's an awful director. He has no ear for dialogue. The newer digital film process looks really awful. Only good ol' George could manage to waste the talents of Christopher Lee, Sam Jackson, Ewan McGregor, and Natalie Portman. And I think Hayden Christensen is the only other actor who possesses Keanu Reeves' atrocious wooden technique. His Anakin doesn't possess darkness, just stupidity. I hope Lucas gets a tumor in that fat double chin of his. If you don't like it, sue me. He's destroyed the meaning of my childhood favorites, so the hell with him. Do you really think the next film is going to make up for it? Only if it's about four hours long and is directed by someone else.

4-0 out of 5 stars Star Wars is Star Wars-No matter what anyone thinks
I am writing on behalf of all the Star Wars movies. Sure the prequals aren't life changing but they still make the cut worthy of the title Star Wars.Back in the 70s/early 80s America needed a major facelift. We had nothin to look foward to anymore and just went by living. The movies out back then were dark and dreary. our common mythology had faded into the closet. Then came Star Wars. It was just supposed to be another space family film that would eventually be forgotten about. We were decieved. What George Lucas put on this Earth was meant to be. He dragged us out of the gutter and gave us something to talk about. People had a place to escape to and run away from there troubles. It wasn't like your average cowboy movie where you know the outcome and the setting. It was a strange galaxy with weird looking creatures and strange spaceships. It was all so real and lifelike. It was the total opposite of Star Trek. It was cool. People wanted more. They got two more. Each delivering there own set of memories. The lines became legendary. The sound of a light saber instantly recognizable. Movies nowadays are always borrwing lines and plots of other movies. Star Wars only borrowed one thing. Creativity. The Star Wars story was pulled out of mid-air. It wasn't like George Lucas said he wanted to make a space movie kind of like an old western. He created the idea of A Space Saga Trilogy. He's the one who threw us into this exciting new world called Star Wars. Fans wanted more. They got comics and books. then Star Wars movies were no more. They were still in the movies. Oter movies had borrowed lines and plots for their own. Thats why Star Wars is pop culture ICON. That is what the prequals lack. When someone comes up yo you with a stick in one hand and is waving it around they don't say "Watch out Count Dooku". They say watch out Darth Vader. The prequals are good movies but they aren't life changing like the Classics. If the prequals came first people wouldn't be walking around saying Look A destroyer droid. They don't have the trademark line like they do in the Classics. They didn't create new famous lines, they just took them from the old ones. As a movie I would give Phantom Menace and AOTC a 4 Star award. As a Star Wars film I would give it 2. The negative two is for lack of creativity. The OT is so popular because of what it was nd what it was created as. George did'nt give us that sense of story and herics like he did with the OT. George didn't create the OT because he wanted to tell a story for himself. He made it for us. For Episode one we weren't thrown into this new world with weird craetures and memorable charecters. In a sense of story The prequals fit nicely with the OT. But for a regular movie It gives us nothing to remember and say over and over again and to instantly recognize as Star Wars. I know it is hard to repeat what happened in the 70s/80s but there was nothing George Lucas could do about it. The Prequals are out in a world where evereything has already happened and didn't ignite the flame as the OT did. The Phantom Menace just continued in the name of Star Wars. The OT are just such good movies in themselves and it just doesn't matter which one you see first. They are all memorable. Don't get me wrong, the prequals are good movies and definantly worthy in the name of Star Wars but they are just thrown in with all the other movies which were created around one movie-Star Wars. Other movies wouldn't be the same without there Star Wars moment. That is why when in the movie Just Married Sarah(Brittany Murphy) asks Tom(Ashton Kutcher) if he ever dreamed of anything more glorious in his childhood than his wedding night, he flashes back to when he was playing lightsabers on the playground with other kids to the famous tune that Changed The World. Da da da DAAAA daa-you know the rest!
"Remember, the Force will be with you, Always" ... Read more


17. A Clockwork Orange
Director: Stanley Kubrick
list price: $19.97
our price: $14.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00005ATQB
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 701
Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (567)

3-0 out of 5 stars More like A Clockwork Tangerine!
Some consider this to be Kubrick's masterpiece. In my opinion Dr. Strangelove was his masterpiece, but Orange is a master work, nonetheless. It's a dark tale of prophecy, a vision of a bleak future, violent and vicious in the extreme, which some might also say we're living in today, judging by the headlines.

So this is a great movie, but this DVD is a great disappointment! Despite what the details above say and what it says on the disc snap-case, the film is not in widescreen letterbox format, but is in full screen format! And the image quality is only fair-to-good. The sound is OK on my mono TV speaker but evidently is not Dolby multi-channel. And the theatrical trailer freezes at various points during playback. There's a chapter index and a list of awards the movie won or was nominated for, and that's about it for bonus features! One can only hope that the next release of this movie on DVD will do it justice, and make it a true Kubrick collectible!

5-0 out of 5 stars Substance and Style!
Perhaps the greatest irony in "A Clockwork Orange" occurs in the scene where Alex is reading the Bible in prison. He informs the viewer that he loves the violence and sex contained in the first part, but really has no use for the preaching in the latter half. I've come across a lot of folks who have seen this flick and it never fails- there are many out there who, like Alex and the Bible, love the brutality of the first hour of the film, and cannot abide the preachy second half. If you are one of those, stop reading this review.

"A Clockwork Orange" is an ingenious comparison of two theories of punishment- retributivism and utilitarianism. Debate has raged over the proper role of a criminal justice system. Is the goal to punish the criminal according to the old eye for an eye standard (retributivism) or to reform the criminal into a useful, law abiding citizen (utilitarianism)? At the outset, many people dismiss utilitarian values as a lot of liberal silliness: soft on crime. A more important question is whether we should reform criminals whether they desire to be reformed or not for the good of society. One of the more interesting aspects of this film is that is shows utilitarianism can be a far more brutal method than retributivism, contrary to popular thought.

Here we have the debate crystallized as if the proponents of both, Kant and Bentham, were debating the merits before our very eyes through the characters on screen. Alex is unquestionably rotten to the core; he maims and rapes helpless victims for laughs. The first hour of the film is dedicated to underscoring this point. When Alex is apprehended by the authorities, he is dealt with in the old fashioned Kantian way- punishment.

Alex then volunteers for a special treatment that will "cure" him, in exchange for freedom. The cure is a form of conditioning that causes Alex to become terribly ill whenever any inclination towards sex or violence surfaces- he now has a reflexive aversion toward evil, and "ceases to be a being capable of moral choice". The final act of the film deals with the consequences of being "cured" in such a way.

By now you probably get the idea- go see this film (but not as a "date"). To further entice you, it's one of the most visually exciting movies ever made, with vibrant images that will burn themselves into your mind. If you've never seen it on DVD, the transfer is great, and you will see things you've missed before. And as a final bonus, look for the guy who plays Darth Vader as a bodyguard.

5-0 out of 5 stars I'm laughing at clouds
"A Clockwork Orange" is screenplay writer/director/producer Stanley Kubrick's interpretation of the book of the same name by Anthony Burgess. The dialog includes some of Burgess' made-up language from the book.

The plot revolves around Alex de Large and his group of friends who are very violent, and get their kicks by raping and assaulting people. After Alex and friends commit various crimes, Alex is finally arrested and put in prison with a sentence of 14 years. Eventually, his sentence is commuted in exchange for him undergoing experimental aversion therapy which makes him physically ill at the thought of sex or violence. However, it also makes him hate Beethoven's 9th Symphony which was played as background music to some aversion films during treatment. After an attempted suicide, Alex is re-treated with apologies by the government for inhuman treatment, and Alex appears he will resume his old ways.

This movie is highly stylized, including wardrobe, hairdo's (mom has purple hair, another woman had dark blue hair), set dressing, location and props. There is a fair amount of full frontal nudity of both sexes, and some stylized and slow-motion violence. Kubrick has made some good and bad movies, but this is his most stylized and over-the-top effort. Not for everyone.

DVD has chapters, English or French spoken language, several subtitle languages, a trailer and list of awards.

5-0 out of 5 stars MUST SEE!!!
Amazing portrayal of the effects of a violent youth on society, and the effects of society on the violent youth in turn. Not enough can be said for Malcom McDowell's genious, artistic performance as the lead character "Alex". This character would be despised if played by any other actor, but Mr Mcdowell's rendition somehow finds us leaving the film with an almost endearing "fondness" for the boy.Fabulous must see art film, but definitely not for sissies!

5-0 out of 5 stars gorgeousness and gorgeosity made flesh
With this provocative, amusing and beautiful tour-de-force Stanley Kubrick established himself as the most audacious and original directors of his time. Though the are thoses who despise it, no one can deny the power of this film to spark impassioned discussions on the film's sudject matter. And I for one feel this is an achievement all on its own. This stirring classic, I hope, will endure and inspire generations of young film enthusiasts like myself. ... Read more


18. Fantastic Planet
Director: René Laloux
list price: $19.98
our price: $17.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 6305307156
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 3580
Average Customer Review: 3.75 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Based on French science fiction novelist Stefan Wul's Oms en Serie ("Oms by the Dozen"), René Laloux's La PlanèteSauvage (its title changed to Fantastic Planet for the U.S. release) paints an animated tale of humans kept as domesticated pets by an alien race of blue humanoid giants called Traags. The story takes place on the Traags' planet Ygam, where we follow our narrator, an Om called Terr, from infancy to adulthood, when he escapes his subjugation with a Traag learning device with which to educate the savage Oms and incite them to revolt.As a French-Czech coproduction, this story had much resonance for its makers as an allegory of Czechoslovakia's invasion by Soviet troops in the late '60s, and had to be completed in Paris due to political pressure.While the story does not distinguish itself in the annals of science fiction, the imagination invested in the surreal backdrops, with its eerie creatures and landscapes, does.The animation technique--moving paper cutouts across backgrounds--contributes to the overall feeling of other-worldliness. Fantastic Planet won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival in 1973.Included on the DVD are three early short subjects by Laloux showing his evolution toward Fantastic Planet. You have your choice of audio: French with English subtitles, or English with English subtitles. But choose the latter so you can see how much the subtitles are cheating you.--Jim Gay ... Read more

Reviews (52)

5-0 out of 5 stars Strange but Good
Fantastic Planet is a movie that anyone can love and enjoy. The movie is a true spectacle of filmmking.

Of course, it has its share of problems (ending is extremely rushed, characters lack personality, dubbing is so bad, its not even funny) but if you just sit back and look at this movie/DVD as a whole, you get something very good. Its so good, it merits itself to be a mandatory part of any eccentric person's DVD collection. (It was actually the 1st DVD I'd ever owned.)

The plot follows the story of one "om" (human) who is kept as a little palm-sized pet for the gigantic, blue skinned traags. He escapes with a traag learning device and uses it along with other wild oms to rebel against the traags.

An interesting aspect of the movie, is that it does almost nothing to make you know the main character. He is an incredibly ambiguous being devoid of any real personality, and if memory serves, he doesn't even have a name.

The animation looks like they made thin outlines and filled them with color-pencils. This creates an effect that totally mistifies the viewer. The beautiful and vid landscapes come alive along side imaginatively drawn characters and various monsters.

Ultimately the movie is great, and any problems in the movies are made up for by the fact that there ARE other short films on the DVD.

Finally, the subtitles are much better than the dub; use them.

EDIT: Now that I've finally gotten to watch the magnificent short films included on the DVD, I can say, they're the most freakish, disturbed, and wonderful pieces of short animation ever.

The best one features a sad farmer whose crops don't grow. So he cries on them and they become huge. So snails eat them and then they become huge, adn start terrorizing the city. The farmer is sad again and this time, he grows gargantuan carrots and the short closes with a hilarious shot of some rabbits eyeing the food expectantly.

2-0 out of 5 stars Don't get the version by United American
Fantastic Planet is by far one of the more unusual animated I have ever seen. Truly unusual and surrealistic scenes, and that funky Pink Floyd meets "Shaft"-style soundtrack by Alain Goraguer gives the movie that truly '70s look and feel. But I warn you to stay away from the earlier VHS edition from United American Video Corps. While the newer dubbed-in-English VHS from Anchor Bay has the problem of forgetting to remove the subtitles, the United American Video Corps. version suffers from poor picture quality, and several missing scenes, not to mention a lot of the animation seems rather choppy. Anchor Bay fixed that problem with better picture quality, and all the scenes intact, and without that choppy animation in certain places. The only advantage United American version has is no subtitles, but since it's not widescreen, you won't be able to see everything. Despite the drawback of subtitles on the Anchor Bay version, if you want the dubbed-in-English version of this European sci-fi masterpiece, go for the Anchor Bay version and avoid the earlier United American edition.

4-0 out of 5 stars Mind Blowing
I didn't expect much from the story. I bought it because I love this style of animation. Some of the scenes were very psychedelic, almost like an acid trip. It turns out that the story was actually the most entertaining part of the movie for me. It definitely gives you a different perspective of human life.

The DVD included four interesting shorts put out by the creator. Most of them included live action as well as animation. The only reason I can't give a full 5 stars is because the subtitles are HORRIBLE. Among the worst i've ever seen. There's little contrast between the background and the text, so about 75% of the words are legible. I really don't understand why the publishers thought this would be acceptable. I took French for several years, but I can imagine how frustrating it would be for someone trying to read that text.

1-0 out of 5 stars More Whining About Subtitles!
YOU CAN'T TURN THEM OFF, PEOPLE!!! AND they run right over the picture, not even in the black letterboxed space beneath! AND (and even if you could forgive not being able to turn them off, this next one is really too, too much to take) MORE THAN HALF THE TIME THEY DON'T MATCH THE ENGLISH TRANSLATION!!!! This last bit takes it from annoying to insufferable. I love Fantastic Planet, and I hate, hate, hate this DVD.

5-0 out of 5 stars Please read MY review FIRST...
I've noticed that TOO MANY people have ruined many products on Amazon before they're even sold with their uptight fierce complaints disguised as 'reviews'!
That unfortunately has happened also with THIS DVD! All I can say is BUY IT! IT'S GREAT! No complaints!....
Now, the reason I am so "FOR" this release is I've had a VHS copy of this film for years [on the 'Embassy Home Video' label] and it was fine. It had the english dubbed-in voices & NO 'subtitles'. I got THAT copy after FIRST seeing it on the SCI-FI channel in 1995, [although I've heard of this movie ever since I can remember!] and later bought a "Video YesterYear" release that had faded colour & a whole scene cut out! Like most of us movie & TV on home video fans, I've been looking for a 'DVD' release....and THIS is IT!!
Sure everyone whines about the infamous 'subtitles', but criminey! HOW many other 'foreign' [YES! 'FOREIGN'] films out there have them?? The soundtrack of this DVD version has the beautiful original French dialogue & music - OR -the option of the English dubbed version, which sounds like it's coming over the telephone for some strange reason[?] So, I recommend watching it with the original 'French' and THEN the non-removable subtitles work PERFECTLY! You'll be GLAD they ARE there!
The BEST part of this DVD version is the inclusion of the earlier 3 Rene Laloux films 'Monkeys Teeth' 'Dead Times' & 'The Snails'! That's the MAIN reason I BOUGHT this! Then again, I'm into obscure foreign animation from the past and don't go berserk if there are 'subtitles'... Yes, they COULD have issued the DVD with 'Closed Captioning', THEN you could remove the subtitles if you want, but they didn't, so there.
Anyone out there seen the "Masters of Russian Animation" series on DVD? Well, THEY have non-removable subtitles too, but if you like the animation for it's own sake, you'll enjoy the films but if you're bothered by mere 'subtitles', then you're MISSING alot of great examples of animation.
Also, anyone who likes the Alain Gorageur soundtrack for FANTASTIC PLANET will ALSO like the 1960s/70s music of composer/arranger "David Axelrod". Very similiar.
What I'm doing here is 'RECOMMENDING' items friends, [like the folks at Amazon suggest], NOT 'tearing things down'. If I believed ALL the negative reviews people have put on this site, I'd NEVER buy ANYTHING! Glad I trust my own instincts & hope you do too. If you can't say something nice don't say anything, I always thought.... OK, I'll shut-up now [:-)] ... Read more


19. The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension (Special Edition)
Director: W.D. Richter
list price: $14.95
our price: $11.21
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00005JKEX
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 1875
Average Customer Review: 4.31 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (167)

5-0 out of 5 stars Best. Movie. Ever.
The following is quoted from the Official Buckaroo Banzai website, and should be taken as canon. These guys work with the facts, and I hope this helps people who are on the fence about buying the DVD edition...

"Wow - we've just gotten our hands on the revised and final list of specs on MGM's upcoming The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai: Special Edition (street date 1/1/02), and you guys are gonna flip for it! These come straight from the amazing Mojo, who was an associate producer on the project. The disc was produced by Michael Arick, whose other recent work includes Forrest Gump and The Magnificent Seven. So here goes... special features on the DVD will include a brand new anamorphic widescreen transfer (presented for the first time on home video in the original 2.35:1 aspect ratio), remixed Dolby Digital 5.1 audio, 2 versions of the movie (the theatrical cut plus a special extended version with restored opening sequence starring Jamie Lee Curtis), feature audio commentary from director W.D. Richter and Reno from the Banzai Institute, a behind-the-scenes documentary and retrospective, 14 deleted scenes, the original teaser trailer, an all-new "Jet Car" special effects trailer, extensive interactive menus with new material from Buckaroo Banzai screenwriter Earl Mac Rauch, special 'watermelon' Easter eggs, Pinky Carruther's Unknown Facts subtitle track, the Banzai Institute Archives, a Banzai Radio segment, original production designs, Jet Car secrets revealed and a still gallery with never-before-seen photos. SWEEEEET! I actually ran into Mojo at the recent Studio Day event here in L.A., and from what he told me, this may be one of the coolest discs in a long time! Everything on this thing is done up as if the disc was produced by the Banzai Institute itself, and there's a ton of new and original film-themed material produced by the folks who worked on the movie. If you love Buckaroo Banzai as much as we do here at The Bits, this is a must have title if there ever was one. ... It's a adventure/sci-fi/comedy in the same vein as Big Trouble in Little China, and it's just plain fun. Don't miss it..."...

4-0 out of 5 stars Where The Future Begins Tomorrow...
This movie was unfortunately released before its time. It got good reviews in the newspapers and magazines, but I saw it on opening night in a nearly-empty theater and it was gone shortly afterwards. A few years later, films such as Back to the Future, Ghostbusters, Big Trouble In Little China (same writer as BB), Men In Black, and Galaxy Quest would make audiences more receptive of sci-fi and/or fantasy movies that played as comedies. Its production values aren't the greatest, and it definitely looks dated (8o's hairstyles, clothing, and music), but it has a quirky, hip quality to it. The movie also features a lot of stars (John Ligthow, Christopher Lloyd, Ellen Barken, Peter Weller, Jeff Goldblum) who went on to bigger and better things. A campy film that could have been the start of something great...too bad it never caught on!

5-0 out of 5 stars Elvira would be proud to narrate this...!
Okay, here's the bottom line line: If you didn't like this movie you should go to the morgue and check to see if you are late... as in 'the late Mr. Smith', 'cuz you don't have a pulse or a funny bone. Peter Weller did this better than he did 'RoboCOP'. Jeff Goldblum is suave and funny in this feature, even more so than in 'Transylvania 6-5000' with Ed Begley, Jr. and Geena Davis. To V. Mejia: Calling this a boring film is the most absurd thing that I have ever heard since George Bush said 'Read my lips.'. You must have been watching a different film or the humor is just beyond you. It is hard to be funny when your audience doesn't understand little things like science and levity. If you don't laugh every couple of minutes at this film you should hit yourself in the funny bone with a rubber mallet. If that doesn't work, well, get yourself a toe tag and follow the instructions in the first sentence above. Where else could you find some calling themselves 'John Big Bootay'? Hmmm??? Buy this, show it to your kid, your grandkids and everyone else that you know. This movie is on a par with 'The Rocky Horror Picture Show', 'Clue', 'Back to the Future' (I,II & III), and many other classic cult films. As Elvira would say: 'Unpleasant Dreams...'.

4-0 out of 5 stars Live Japanimation
This movie came out before Japanimation became big. If this movie was animated it would make more sense to those who don't get it. It's a parody of Japanese movies, particularly the animated ones. The bizzare costumes, the aliens, and the implied history are all aspects of these films.

2-0 out of 5 stars pure torture
Like many other reviewers here, I have tried and tried to watch this film in its entirety. But it's just not possible. This movie is tedious. The entire opening home-movie sequence is incredibly laborious. There are a few funny moments in the film, but overall, this movie is painful. The folks at the School of The Americas could probably use this movie as part of their torture training program. John Lithgow's performance is excrutiating to watch. It's uncomfortably over the top. I first saw this movie when it came out in theaters and fell asleep. This movie is BAD. People say it's a cult classic, but it's nothing like the Rocky Horror Picture Show, which is a true cult classic. ... Read more


20. Star Wars - Episode I The Phantom Menace & Episode II Attack of the Clones (Full Screen Editions)
list price: $49.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006JDUE
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 7002
Average Customer Review: 2.97 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

George Lucas transports audiences back to the future with Star Wars: Episode I, The Phantom Menace, the first installment of a prequel trilogy in which the director imagines the foundation for the entire six-part saga. Despite receiving a storm of adverse criticism (notably for Jar Jar Binks), Lucas continually fascinates with his ability to place his characters--some new, some old, some CGI--in the same dramatic situations posed in the original trilogy: whether it be the juxtaposition of primitives with technologically advanced societies or the timeless battle between good and evil, the very familiarity of these recurring scenarios and rhythms galvanizes the viewer. Of course, the state-of-the-art visual effects contribute mightily to the final impact: the kinetic Pod Race sequence, the epic military battles, the Romanesque grandeur of Naboo, the underwater city of Otoh Gunga, the decadent brio of Tatooine, and the dizzying skyscrapers of the city planet Coruscant. --Kevin Mulhall

If The Phantom Menace was the setup, then Attack of the Clones is the plot-progressing payoff, and devoted Star Wars fans are sure to be enthralled. Ten years after Episode I, Padmé Amidala (Natalie Portman), now a senator, resists the creation of a Republic Army to combat an evil separatist movement. The brooding Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen) is resentful of his stern Jedi mentor, Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor), tormented by personal loss, and showing his emerging "dark side" while protecting his new love, Amidala, from would-be assassins. Youthful romance and solemn portent foreshadow the events of the original Star Wars as Count Dooku (a.k.a. Darth Tyranus, played by Christopher Lee) forges an alliance with the Dark Lord of the Sith, while lavish set pieces showcase George Lucas's supreme command of all-digital filmmaking. All of this makes Episode II a technological milestone, savaged by some critics as a bloated, storyless spectacle, but still qualifying as a fan-approved precursor to the pivotal events of Episode III. --Jeff Shannon ... Read more

Reviews (31)

3-0 out of 5 stars An objective view.
First, the movies themselves: Episode I retained the old school mystic feel of the originals, and takes the viewer back to when it all began. It suffers however, from idiotic droids and Jar Jar Binks (who posseses the most annoying voice since C3PO). It's a four star movie at least.
Episode II tells its story well, but the story is unfortunately unconvincing. Anakin is nothing but an obnoxious teenager for some reason...is the viewer expected to believe that the distinguished order of the Jedi would not educate one of its own disciples on the rudiments of life? Then there's the romance between Senator Amidala and Anakin; even given the circumstances, it's hardly believable due to Anakin's generally creepy nature. Great special effects though, a decent villian, and we finally get to see Yoda do some fighting which was simply awesome. Even though it's got some great points, it's at best a three star movie. It does require, however, a substantial amount of 'suspension of disbelief' to view and enjoy.
Now a word about formats: Put simply, if it's not widescreen, it's not worth the money.

2-0 out of 5 stars both lack the spirit the originals had
Phantom Penice and Attack of the Boners lack the spirit and greatness that the original Star Wars had. George Lucas has gone completly overboard with the special FX. I think they say that 96% of the movie's have a SFX shot in them somewhere. And watching the behind the scenes as actors are doing nothing but jumping around infront of green screens is a complete and utter bore.

The original Star Wars movies had somthing special about them, but it wasnt just the SFX. I think George has lost it by thinking the FX will carry these movies. In the original it had a new excitment about what was happening? and what was a Jedi? and it was filled with action and adventure... then Umpire Strikes back continued that, with alot of newer great action seaqunces, but also adding that Vader is Lukes father, and in Return of the Jedi, Luke and Leia are brother and sister... and many more things added to the charactors and plot of the films.... which is where these 2 new ones fail. Going monsterous over board with computers and FX and not concintrating hard enough on plot ideas, and originality has brought these 2 to screw up the Star Wars saga. The FX can be ok in some parts of the films, but there is just too much of it, enough to make me sick. Film makers these days should be concintrating on making the best film they can, not worrying about how to do somthing on a computer, putting it on screen, and then at the end of the day just before knock off time, think about a plot to go around the FX for a minute, and go with whatever is off the top of your head?

George needs to rethink his statagy and worry about the FX of these things after making a great movie, not just slapping a few actors together and then seeing what great things the computer can do these days. It seems that Lucas knew he had a billion devoted fans who think apon him as a god, and knew that if he put 2 stick figures on the screen, blasted the intro, and showed an Ewok shave his underarms for over 2 hours, he'd make million sof it. What is sorely missed in these movies is the beleivable models used in the originals. This whole CGI thing has gone WAY overboard, and made things look too unrealistic.... to the person who said they wouldnt be suprised to see Shrek and Donkey waving in the background... good call... I agree with you 100%!

The CGI is too much in these films and rueins them

4-0 out of 5 stars Re: Another dazzling space adventure from George Lucas
I hadnt seen a Star Wars movie in the theatres in almost 20 years before I saw this one....and Ill tell you....I forgot how GOOD it sounded!!! The light sabers sounded incredible to say nothing of the full battle sequences. Ok I had to get that out hehe...on with the review.

Now...call me a purist....call me old fashioned etc....Im still trying to get used to all the computer special effects in Star Wars. Im used to puppets....now we get computerized monsters. Ill have to grow to like them hehe. The movie is very very good....loads more action than in Episode 1.....Its fascinating to me to see these guys Annakin Skywalker and Obi Won Kenobi 'back in the day' when there was a Republic and loads of Jedi Knights.

The storyline is as engaging as ever....in this case Annakin is real stuck on Padame....Count Dooku is building a massive droid army under the noses of the Republic....and the Jedi knights and the Clone Army have to go stop them. Really intense action sequences.....the light saber duels are as great as ever....the full battle sequences are awesome!!! They really put in the time on this one.

So if youre a Star Wars fan....go and get it. Its terrific!!!

2-0 out of 5 stars STAR WARS FILMS ARE NO LONGER RELIVENT FILMMAKING
GEORGE LUCAS IS A LAZY UNINSPIRED DIRECTOR JUST LOOKING TO MILK THIS PATHETIC FRANCHISE FOR ALL IT IS WORTH. STUPID CHARACTERS, STUPID PLOT, AND TAKES OVER 10 YEARS TO COMPLETE THE LAST THREE FILMS??? AND THE BEST CHARACTER HE COULD COME UP WITH IS JAR JAR BINKS??!! WHAT A JOKE. If you want a great adventure Trilogy filmed with top notch actors, supurb plots, production and FX it is by far and away THE LORD OF THE RINGS TRILOGY. This even makes the first three Star Wars films look like a joke. And all of this yes all of this was done in less than 4 years!!! Lord of the Rings has made George Lucas look and his films irrelevent. its like who cares any more???? There is nothing out there and probibly nothing will ever come close to capturing the epic sacle, the superb story telling and complete magic of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. You just will not beable to top LOTR in any way. George Lucas sit down before you boar us all to death and take a lesson from a real director--all hail PETER JACKSON. The new standard had been set--can any thing come close-only when Peter Jackson films The Hobbit. End of story.

2-0 out of 5 stars I feel sick!
These movies suffer from: bad acting, bad dialogue, over the top CGI fxs, lack of emotions, and too much overall politics. I love the original trilogy but these prequels are the worst ever. ... Read more


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