The Witches (1966 Britain)

There are things that keep you watching here, of course; there always are in a Hammer Horror. I particularly liked the depiction of rural village life in the 1960s; it’s picture postcard stuff, the sort of thing to make me nostalgic for a time I never actually knew. After a hell of a start, The Witches, which could indeed have used a more masterful director like Terence Fisher at the helm, slowly loses its grip. The screenplay is from Nigel Kneale, and he was dissatisfied with this film because he intended it to be a dark comedy that poked fun at witchcraft but Hammer wanted a serious horror movie so all comedic touches were removed.  [Read more…]

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A Bit Of Fry & Laurie ( UK 1987–1994 )

neddy-and-jackCambridge graduates Fry and Laurie would, by their appearance and elocution, fit the bill of upper class twits perfectly. And certainly a lot of the humour on offer in this series does test your sense of subtlety to the limit. But these two pithy academics also seem to have an interest in lampooning the lower classes they seem to have less in common with, so the humour covers a wider section of society than those this might be slightly more aimed at. You can see where David Mitchell and Robert Webb got their idea of a sketch show from. These two chaps. The usual gripe, that is common to most sketch shows of the time, is the unnecessary inclusion of musical numbers, but that aside its a thoroughly enjoyable show. [Read more…]

Asylum (1972 United Kingdom)

barbara-parkinsIts definitely worth checking yourself in here. On a foggy English day a young psychiatrist Dr. Martin (Robert Powell) arrives at the local mental institution, which resembles a Gothic castle. Martin expects to get a job after receiving a proposition from the head doctor, B. Starr. Unfortunately, the creepy wheelchair bound current headcase in charge, Dr Rutherford, tells him that Starr has gone insane and is now one of the patients. And that the only way to get the job is to identify the Doctor. Any we think employers give us too many hurdles to jump over at interviews these days! And what was the salary package on offer? [Read more…]

Dr Who: Daleks Invasion Earth 2150. A .D (1966 UK)

dr-who-and-the-daleks-1965-003-long-shot-with-daleks-fear-00m-n0t-3x4-cropThose colourful pepperpots are at it again…Although William Hartnell was the television Doctor at the time, for some reason he was not asked to play the role in the films, even though both were based upon television episodes which he had appeared in. The films make no mention of the Doctor being an alien timelord; he is presumed to be a human scientist / inventor, and this deviation from the TV series is the reason for Peter Cushing’s banishment from the official canon. Something else missing from the film is the television version’s very distinctive electronic theme tune. Not that I give a jot about that. [Read more…]

House Of Cards (1990 – 1995 United Kingdom)

house-of-cards-500x271This is almost 11 hours (4 DVD’s) worth of top quality entertainment. The viewer’s life grinds to a halt to digest each segment. This is the kind of drama that makes the BBC world-famous. Nothing can beat it. The Americans wish they could create modern Shakespearean tragedies like this, but they lack the breeding and pedigree of an old world country. So is it worth buying, renting, borrowing or stealing? To quote the Right Honourable Francis Urquhart MP, “you might very well think that but I couldn’t possibly comment!” [Read more…]

Dr Who and The Silurians (1970 UK)

siluriansE6As with many Doctor Who monsters (and as Terrance Dicks points out on the commentary track), the Silurians are much more frightening when they are shadowy figures lurking behind the scenes causally killing people and causing general mayhem. They not as effective when they’re standing under bright studio lights where every costuming join is visible. The Doctor has been exiled to Earth with a broken Tardis, but since a disproportionate amount of alien disasters happen in 1970 England, he still has plenty to keep him busy. [Read more…]

Black Sails (USA) 2014/15/16

black-sails-season-2I’ve watched the first two seasons and have seen no drop off in terms of episode quality; if anything the script, character development, and pacing have gotten stronger with each show. There are thrills, spills and wenching (even a brothel) on display. This series has captured my eye and drawn me into its world. It must be commended for not trying to do too much in terms of the budget. The sets, costumes, and especially the ships transform the screen into a window of 18th century Caribbean life, and the realism is a big plus for the show. [Read more…]

Skyfall (2012 United Kingdom)

bond3(This may be the post that I go full retard, but its worth it!) Bond doesn’t even blink when the girl he just bedded gets shot in cold blood. He acknowledges Severine is an abused sex slave, then he jumps into the shower. I had little problem with Bond tricking a woman into bed in the past. But the Skyfall scene should land him on the list of registered sex-offenders. There are a lot of questions in this review, and like Hillary Clinton, I can’t answer any of them. [Read more…]

The Prisoner (1967 UK)

prisoneSometimes you just have to shut off the TV of today and return to the boob tube from the dark ages. Courtesy of dvd mostly, of course. The Prisoner is one of those entertainment thingys you can watch as fluff action-adventure one day, or as a mysterious drama with secret messages for you to decode the next time you give it a whirl. [Read more…]

The Curse Of The Werewolf (1961 United Kingdom)

cursewerewolf By the early 60s director Terence Fisher was still regarded as Hammer’s best director, and his remarkable work here is definitely on par with the previous classics he had made at that point. Fisher puts to great use the lavishly built sets and makes this one of his most beautiful looking films despite the budget constrains, he creates a Gothic atmosphere of impeding doom that suits perfectly Anthony Hinds’ story. [Read more…]

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