Oct 312009

Well the story is fine, the cinematography as good as you would expect from a large budget show (although there’s a little too much digital noise in some of the darker scenes), the sound excellent. What’s not to like ?

The formatting of the BD disks themselves of course. Whilst the actual content is pretty good, the way that it has been put together sucks. You can tell those putting it together tried pretty hard to make the blueray experience feature filled, but they forgot the one real reason why people buy boxed sets. They buy them to watch the show.

And too much gets in the way of that :-

  • There’s an especially irritating piracy warning. If I dare to pirate the disks, the FBI will apparently use extraordinary rendition to kidnap me from the UK and fine me $250,000! If there is anything more irritating than those pointless anti-piracy messages, then it is an anti-piracy message that has not been “localised” – people get more than a little annoyed by US-orientated messages.
  • We get an annoying little message from the director about how good the disks are. This would be bad enough if it only appeared without our requesting it once, but it seems to show up every time you change the disc for the next one!
  • Similarly when you start playing an episode on a new disc, you get an annoying pop-up warning you that certain features will only work if you have a recent blueray player. It is the wrong place! If certain features won’t work it will be noticeable more in the menu than in the playback!
Nov 262008

Format: Blueray

IMDB entry: here

The story of a woman who first encounters criminal violence with her boyfriend; she is beaten and he is killed. During her recovery, she encounters more criminal violence which she deals with using an unlicensed gun. The later might make this a pro/anti gun control issue film, but that does not interest me.

This could be a film that would be one of those run of the mill things that just does not make an impression, but Jodie Foster’s acting adds enough that you connect with the character and have an interest in her journey. Perhaps not a great film but definitely a good film.

Nov 152008

Format: Blueray

IMDB Entry here

Now this is what I call an action movie. A bunch of mercs are hired to get a case off somebody, and are gradually whittled down by casualties, and betrayal until it becomes about something other than just the job. Not only are the action scenes interesting and believable (too many modern films have action scenes that require the existence of superhumans), but include some of the best car chases anyone has ever seen.

It also has a lot of depth with a surprisingly complex and twisting story. Tons of mystery; not least of which, what was in the case ? Nobody knows.

Definitely worth a watch.

Nov 012008

Format: Blueray

IMDB entry: here.

On the surface this seems to be a simplistic story about a man who stumbles on a drug trade gone wrong, picks up some money, and finds himself pursued by those who want it back at any cost. But there is a far more complex story going on hidden beneath the violence having to do with the thoughts and feelings of an old sherif who follows on behind trying to pick up the pieces.

The added complexity adds interest and makes this interesting than a typical action film. It keeps your interest during a lazy rainy afternoon and is worth the time.

Oct 262008

Format: Blueray

IMDB Link: here

A re-make of Les Liasons Dangereuses with a pathetic Hollywood gloss. The core story could have been quite amusing if they had had the sense to portray the characters as properly dissipated young people. The characters in Cruel Intentions are schoolchildren which makes their actions somewhat unbelievable. This is not the fault of the actors; simply the age of the characters. The original story portrays a level of dissipation far beyond what is revealed here; making the theme of redemption through love considerably less powerful.

Don’t waste your time; try one of the film adaptations closer to the original.