Category Archives: DVD Diary

September 2, 2015

Child 44* During the Stalin Era in Russia, there was no such thing as murder as it went against the ideology of the State. Consequently, when a child is found murdered, a Police Officer is ordered not to investigate too deeply. Then, when more murdered children appear, it seems pretty apparent that a serial-killer is at large. Even though facing demotion and intense departmental pressure, the officer goes ahead with his investigation, with only help from his wife. Daniel Espinosa creates a remarkable vision of a grey and gritty regimented Communist Russia, and, a pretty remarkable murder mystery. Final Girl ... [ Read More ]

August 5, 2015

Jurassic World* The original ‘Jurassic’ movies were made in 1993, 1997 and 2001. Now, in 2015, along comes another sequel. The story about genetically engineered dinosaurs going rampant in an adventure theme park remains essentially the same. Nothing much has changed. However, the children aren’t so nauseous in this one, and, if you like watching dinosaurs eat lots of tourists, then, you should get a big kick out of this film. What makes this movie are the special effects, which are just terrific. Can’t wait for the movie to be released in 3D. Strangerland When a teenager and her younger ... [ Read More ]

July 22, 2015

Woman in Gold When laws are passed in Austria, which restores art that was plundered by the Nazis to their rightful owners, Maria Altman, an Austrian Jew who escaped from Vienna during the Nazi occupation, and is now living in California, reluctantly returns to her homeland to regain what is rightfully hers. Maria takes her claim to an Austrian tribune; however, the Austrian government will not give up Maria’s famous and very valuable painting. Later, Maria’s American lawyer finds a loophole, and her claim is pursued in the American courts. Occasionally, this movie does ‘flashback’ to tell a predictable story ... [ Read More ]

July 08, 2015

Admiral In the 17th Century The Netherlands are being torn apart by political turmoil. The Republicans are battling the Monarchists, and the country is at the point of civil war. By taking advantage of the situation, the English and the French are both planning to invade and seize enormous amounts of Dutch territory. A Hero is required, to reorganize the Navy, and, repel the foreign invaders. An unassuming sailor reluctantly accepts the appointment of the Admiral of the Fleet. He does this knowing that the path he is about to embark on leads to many political dangers. This remarkable movie ... [ Read More ]

June 24, 2015

The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe This movie is a Lifetime made-for-TV mini-series, but, it is available now on DVD, and it is well worth a watch. The movie follows the life and career of Marilyn Monroe, the most important sex-symbol of the 20th century. From her harrowing childhood, being shuttled from one foster home to the next, the movie looks at her various marriages, her fights with studio bosses, and her determination to be taken seriously as an actress. However, the central focus of the movie is an examination of Marilyn’s insecurities. Her struggles with alcohol and drug abuse, ... [ Read More ]

June 10, 2015

Ex _Machina* In his very luxurious mountain retreat, the zillionaire owner of a computer company has created what he believes to be a robot with consciousness. He summons one of his underlings to join him at his estate, and, then, asks the employee to administer a series of tests to establish whether or not the robot is self-aware. After meeting the robot, the employee is fascinated by its ability to perceive. Furthermore, he is captivated by, and, quickly drawn into, his employer’s bizarre lifestyle. Alex Garland writes and directs a slow-moving but absorbing Sci-Fi mystery. The minimal sets of the ... [ Read More ]

May 27, 2015

Testament of Youth Just prior to WW1, a well brought up young English country girl pleads desperately with her parents to be allowed to study at Oxford University. However, shortly after she commences her studies, the war breaks out. As she watches her fiancée, brother, and friends all go off to fight, she feels that she too should contribute somehow to the war effort. The woman abandons Oxford, and enlists in a nursing unit. She is sent to the frontlines in Flanders, where she observes first-hand the gruesome carnage of the war. This good English costume-drama is based on a ... [ Read More ]

May 13, 2015

The Sponge Bob Movie, Sponge out of Water Sponge Bob Square Pants is a cook in a Fast Food Diner in the town of Bikini Bottom, which is far beneath the sea, on the ocean’s floor. In the diner, Sponge Bob makes Krabby Patties, which are a delicious seafood burger. Plankton, the evil owner of a rival diner, steals the secret recipe to Krabby Patties so that he too can serve the popular treat. The quest to regain the secret formula takes Sponge Bob, and his friends, on a journey into the Past, the Future, and, the Parallel Universes. I ... [ Read More ]

April 29, 2015

Cinderella Director Kenneth Branagh had a very clear vision in mind when he made this live action version of the Cinderella fairytale. He wanted it to look breathtakingly beautiful, and, it is! His movie faithfully follows the story, while, it is extravagantly sumptuous and magical. The sets, costumes, and special effects are all gorgeous. Lily James makes a charming and delightful Cinderella, as, Cate Blanchett and Helena Bonham-Carter have heaps of ‘high camp’ fun playing the Evil Stepmother and Fairy Godmother. Lots of great English character actors fill out the minor roles. This wonderful production will be enjoyed by children ... [ Read More ]

April 15, 2015

Unbroken* During WW11, after an airplane crash, an American airman spends several harrowing months adrift on the Pacific Ocean in a rubber lifeboat. At last, he is rescued by the Japanese, and, taken to a Japanese Prisoner of War camp. Here, the airman, who is also a famous Olympian athlete, is relentlessly tortured and victimized by a jealous and sadistic prison guard. This movie is based on a real life story, and, it is intended to be inspiring. It’s directed by Angelina Jolie, who shows that she is just as talented behind the camera as she is in front of ... [ Read More ]