Archive for the ‘DVD Reviews’ Category

Joseph Losey Collection

Wednesday, March 11th, 2009

I have wrapped up the reviews of the titles in Optimum UK’s ‘Joseph Losey Collection’ boxset, with three of the director’s lesser known works. The Big Night (1951) is a well written Film Noir from his pre-witchunt days. Sleeping Tiger (1954) was one of his first films from after the move to Europe, and a superb early performance from Dirk Bogarde. Mr Klein (1976) is a fascinating wartime drama filmed and set in Paris, starring Alain Delon.

I have also added a page for the Joseph Losey Collection boxset as a whole.

Stay tuned later this year for a Joseph Losey biography and more reviews.

Goliath!

Thursday, February 19th, 2009

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As anyone who reads my earlier blog posts will know, I am in the process of updating all of the reviews and pages on the site into a new format (its a technical thing!) and taking the opportunity to update and fix any errors on the reviews as I go. So for the last week I have been updating the Peplum pages and reviews.

I also took the opportunity to add two new reviews – a double bill of Goliath cinema, from Wild East. Goliath and the Barbarians (1959) and the utterly crazy Goliath and the Vampires (1961). Any Peplum fans should certainly pick this set up.

Stanley Baker doublebill

Wednesday, February 4th, 2009

Stanley Baker is probably one of Britain’s very best actors, and in this pair of films from director Joseph Losey he gets to show off his impeccable acting skills.

Criminal (1960) sees Baker on the wrong side of the law as a thief who tries to screw his fellow criminals out of the pay-off from a robbery, but finds that they can be rather nasty when crossed. One of the most brutal crime films from the era, and certainly one of the best.

Eva (1962) is a completely different film, a romantic tale with a distinctly European twist. Baker is on top form, but sadly the film we see is a mere shell, having been cut to ribbons by the producers, leaving Joseph Losey’s original vision, lost to time. Still of interest.

We’ll be taking a good look at more of Joseph Losey’s work towards the end of the month with an all new biography, so stay tuned…

Get Stone!

Friday, January 30th, 2009

We take a look this week at Aussie Biker cinema, or to be more precise, Stone (1974). No need for any more yik-yak here, read the review then buy the film!

Stone

Jess Franco – guts and girls

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009

Released by Severin at the end of 2008 this double bill catches Jess Franco imbetween his more interesting periods of direction, but still able to put out a solid effort.

Devil Hunter (1980) sees Franco take to the hot steaming jungles of… southern Spain for a cannibal adventure. Nothing too original in the storyline but plenty of nudity make this worth watching for cannibal and Franco fans.

Bloody Moon (1982) is Jess Franco’s slasher film. Sadly the storyline is too restrictive to let the director do anything particularly interesting, but there are some over-the-top gore and some genuinely tense stalking scenes that genre fans might enjoy.

In the Folds of the Flesh

Friday, January 23rd, 2009

Here is one that you won’t want to miss, if you enjoy your Euro-cult cinema with a good dash of weird… First Review of 2009

Harold Pinter and Joseph Losey

Tuesday, October 28th, 2008

Part one of our look at Optimum’s new Joseph Losey Collection looks at his three films with Harold Pinter, often considered to be his very best works.

The Servant (1963)

The Accident (1967)

The Go-Between (1970)

Yul Brynner double-bill

Saturday, October 18th, 2008

Coming out this Monday (20th) from Optimum is a double bill of Yul Brynner epics. Released last year in the US but making their first appearance on UK DVD, these two films are enjoyable but not the best epics from the era.

Taras Bulba (1962)

Kings of the Sun (1963)

The Steve Reeves Collection

Saturday, September 27th, 2008

Released earlier this year by Retromedia this double bill set provides two of Reeves’ historical Pepla in their full widescreen ratios.

The Giant of Marathon (1959) – is one of the genre’s very best titles with some incredibly battle scenes and a good storyline as well. Mario Bava appears to have shot most of the film himself and it looks great. Recommended to all genre fans.

War of the Trojans (1962) is the sequel to the earlier Wooden Horse of Troy (available on German DVD) and is not as impressive – the battle scenes in particular could use a little work, but it is still enjoyable and really you can count it as a bonus as the set is worth getting for ‘Marathon’ alone.

Blacula meets Black Dracula…

Monday, September 22nd, 2008

With funky dialogue abound, you might expect Optimum’s latest DVD release (released today) to be pure exploitation, but in fact Blacula and sequel Scream Blacula Scream are more akin to 1960s gothic horrors than their 70s cousins.

Take a read of our super detailed newest reviews: Blacula & Scream Blacula Scream