Reviews written by registered user
gwynhafar

10 reviews in total 
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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Haunting - Magical - Ultimately Hopeful, 16 November 2012
10/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I absolutely love this film and am so happy to own the DVD of it.

What a shame that this film was released so close on the heels of the other fairy film and thus was overlooked at the box office! Even today it holds up so well and both surprises and delights the viewer.

We are transported into a thoroughly magical yet unpredictable realm to explore what might be possible or merely hoped for in the next world - a place "as real as Clacton on Sea" or a "state of mind" only. The pain, sorrow, hope, and fulfillment of the human journey are artistically offered to the viewer in a way that draws each human in.

Every piece of the production complements the others. The cast is perfect - especially Toby Stephens in his portrayal of a vulnerable yet truly determined seeker of the truth. Some reviewers have remarked on the slow pace, but I love the time allotted for each event or revelation in the story. When I am given the time to feel what the character feels as the story is developing, I relish each twist and turn that much more! Oh, how I wish this could be re-released in theatres! This film deserves much greater recognition that it originally received. If you can only view or rent this film, do so. But if you are able to find a DVD to purchase - do so with utmost haste. You will not regret it! I, myself, have also just ordered the original book by Steve Szilagyi on which the script if based.

"Vexed" (2010)
2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Laughing out loud and wanting to see more, 5 November 2012
9/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This review is for the overall show, "Vexed". I have purchased Season 1 via Amazon Prime Watch Instantly and will try to purchase a box set of Seasons 1 and 2 (hopefully including some great extra features) as soon as I can legally purchase them in the US.

At first I was curious about the show based on the actors involved, but then I just loved the perverse black comedy of it all. Not many shows surprise or delight viewers anymore. This one did, but you have to get on board with your tongue firmly in the cheek. Really, really laugh out loud funny on so many fronts.

I wish someone who is bold, who has vision, and who has the right pull would see what a gem this whole idea is and rescue it from obscurity. My kudos to the writers, production team, actors, and all involved. Please do not give up. You do have an audience - even if the BBC broadcasting moguls try to bury your show opposite the Olympics. Shame, shame, shame on them!

No wonder some actors wanted out - really, really downhill storytelling, 5 November 2012
2/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I loved the original "Upstairs Downstairs" as well as so many other wonderful British miniseries on PBS through the years. But this incarnation of UD was lukewarm to begin with and has steadily gone downhill. I was so disgusted by the plot and characters in this episode (along with the downhill slide of plot development and characters in the preceding episodes) that I will probably choose to view more of the original series on Netflix or Amazon Instant Video instead of ever watching this series again.

It feels like the production staff gave up and threw every disgusting thing they could at the wall (like spaghetti) to see if anything would stick. BBC seems to have gone completely off the rails and ruined many shows with the possibility of being something new, fresh, exciting, and innovative. I love what I have seen of "Vexed", but Season 2 was effectively buried by broadcasting it against the Olympics. I will be buying the DVD box set of "Vexed" as soon as I can legally purchase it in the US. I will NOT be buying either season of the UD reboot.

BBC/CPB/PBS - Get great writers back on staff and give production teams the budget to develop anew the wonderful storytelling that you have been so successful at in the past. Don't just be crass and disgusting, but nurture wit and resonating human characters and struggles.

Repli-Kate (2002)
0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
James Roday really cute, 17 January 2011
7/10

The ONLY reason I wanted to see this film was because I wanted to see James Roday in a different role. He was such a cutie in this film. I think this was his chance to do a "Real Genius" role, and it's really not as bad as some of the reviewers think. It is a genre film but still quite enjoyable.

With James' new stardom in Psych, it would behoove the owners of this film to release it to DVD again. I'd buy it.

I'd also like to see Miss Match and First Years, but they are really hard to find now. What a missed opportunity for the film gurus.

You can see some of his signature Shawn Spencer reactions, but Roday also conveys the underlying text of frustrated and socially shy science geek very well. It is worth a look.

6 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
Searching for the "Historical" King Arthur and finding this treasure!, 27 October 2010
10/10

I taped a late night broadcast of the film compilation of this series, purported to be the "true" story of the "real" King Arthur. Not having been too keen on the cleaned up and sometimes stuffy stories from Tennyson on, I was very, VERY skeptical - "Right, I'll bet" was my response to this claim. But after viewing the movie, I went on a quest that took me to local British bookshops, Rice University, and a hunger to learn more. I was totally fascinated by this telling of the tales - especially the basis of what might have happened to create the "Sword in the Stone" myth. This one was so much better! Here was a crafty, insightful, strategy churning Arthur who used logic, psychology, and military might when necessary to preserve his people and build alliances with an amusing assortment of petty kings in what was left of Roman Britain after their departure. Okay - enough overview.

Back to my quest for this and that. Every occurrence that comes up - historical figures, battles, even down to how people lived in the 800's was right. This gritty portrayal of Arthur was so fascinating that I just had to know more. I wrote to the production company. They sent me what they had and referred me to Terence Feeley, writer of most of the episodes. I wrote to him and still have the lovely letter he sent back.

This series is available in its entirety on DVD from the UK - formatted for that region only, unfortunately. But I suggest you get a region free player and have a ball watching these episodes all over again!

How much more compelling it is to view Arthur as a leader who used every human capability to achieve what few others could even imagine, to live such a "purpose-driven" life (to borrow a phrase). I could imagine him as a boy observing nature, observing people, sharpening his wit as well as his sword arm. What an amazing ideal for youngsters - develop your wit, your heart, your strength to achieve the most magnificent results. Dream the dream! Be all that you can possibly be!

29 out of 45 people found the following review useful:
Too dark and boring, 13 July 2010
1/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I have bought all the other Poirot DVDs but I will NOT be buying this one. I was bored and put off altogether by the dark portrayal of this story.

While I did not care for Finney's portrayal of Poirot in the 1974 film of the same name, I did like how interesting the characters were and how understandable the back story was. In this latest version, I was just bored and found none of the characters including Poirot interesting to watch or care about. He just looked like an ill and cranky old man all the way through the story.

I do NOT recommend watching this episode at all. Read the book or tolerate the Finney version. It would have been so great to see Suchet's usual Poirot instead of Finney in that film.

I wonder if the "Orient Express" video game is as dark and boring.

3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Rules of Journalism, 14 March 2009
8/10

I loved this film and would really like to find a copy of it. It had great lines in it about the "rules of journalism" - number one being "follow the money". The disguises and "tricks" Earle Brattigan (Bruce Greenwood) uses to get people to talk to him about his investigation are inventive and very amusing (but also a bit dangerous given the people he is dealing with). It was not the greatest film, but I found it very entertaining indeed! And, boy, is Bruce Greenwood easy on the eyes! His sidekick provides an amusing foil for his escapades, and the leading lady gives him enough disdain to make their eventual union full of sparks. I seem to recall an escape via a ski lift car careening wildly. All in all good made for TV effort. I think it was a pilot that didn't get picked up. It surely would be welcomed in today's TV wasteland!

7 out of 10 people found the following review useful:
What else is hiding up in Canada - come on down!, 2 March 2009
10/10

Wow! Talk about gripping and intellectually surprising! This film is superb! I had previously been unable to find a copy of the miniseries that preceded it (H20), but I went on another quest after watching only part of "The Trojan Horse". I will now have the complete set to relish. What a treat this is! I'm not all that fond of action / political thrillers, but I think this one will (or should) become a classic. I am constantly drawn further in and can never see what comes up next. Very well written, directed; acted. Do not miss this film - you won't regret the 3 hours one little bit. You will want more! I agree with poster on the discussion board. If Tom McLaughlin is the bad guy, I say - let's elect him not once but twice and hang on for the ride! I don't see his character as a liar and a cheat but rather as a perhaps flawed hero with noble ideas that I would love to see pushed forward.

I loved the speech he made to the reporter - "Citadel on a hill? (We should all consider ourselves) citizens of the world!" meaning let's get serious about holding up our end of the bargain as a member of the global community. I want to see a sequel where he carries out his program! I think what he calls for is doable and would make a huge advance in uplifting civilization for all earth's inhabitants.

And don't miss the predecessor, H2O!

11 out of 17 people found the following review useful:
Waste of time -go see "Lady in the Water" instead, 4 September 2006
1/10

After seeing this film and being totally disappointed and bored, I went home and watched the original "Pirates of the Caribbean". It was magnificent, witty, rich in the values which make a film a classic.

However "Dead Man's Chest" is just plain awful. Where were the original writers? All on vacation somewhere else? These guys had no real plot and chose to fill the time with really valueless retreads from their own lives and much better films. I believe that: 1. More than one in the group had a gerbil who rolled around in a wheel.

2. Someone had watched the marvelous Douglas Fairbanks' classic "Black Pirate" film and lifted the ship boarding and sword fighting sequences (here done with less daring do and swashbuckling).

3. Someone was enamored of all the "neat tricks" that computer graphics made possible.

My advice - don't waste your time. This is a placeholder for what we all hope will be a much better sequel that at least equals the first vehicle.

1 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Absolutely delightful treasure of a film - what a gift!, 27 August 2006
8/10

I wish we'd distribute more widely treasures from Canada, the UK, and Australia in the U.S. I had to dig to find this film for rental, but I am now looking into how I can purchase it for my library.

The longing is an old one but the story is told in such a fresh and sometimes quirky new way that the viewer at once is struck by its freshness yet also experiences that shock of recognition by which all human experience is bound.

The story, acting, directing - everything works superbly. I am now more a fan than ever of well told and portrayed stories about people relating to each other and their world to dig deeper to find the happiness that is possible for each of us.

Thanks, mates, for a delightful film. Please keep them coming. You will love this film!