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Michael Crichton

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  • Westworld - 40th Anniversary Edition [Blu-ray] [1974] [Region Free] Westworld - 40th Anniversary Edition | Blu Ray | (27/10/2014) from £7.87  |  Saving you £10.12 (56.30%)  |  RRP £17.99

    Welcome to Delos, the high-tech Disneyland for adults that Michael Crichton created for Westworld, a nifty science fiction thriller from 1973 that also marked the popular novelist's feature-film directorial debut. The movie is so named because the vacationing buddies who travel to Delos (James Brolin, Richard Benjamin) choose Westworld as their destination (the other choices being Roman World and Medieval World), where they are free to indulge their movie-inspired fantasies of the Wild West). The place is populated by perfectly humanlike robots programmed and monitored to cater to every guest's fancy, from brothel beauties to black-hatted gunslingers (such as the villain played by Yul Brynner). But fun turns into abject horror when the robots--particularly Brynner's villain--begin to malfunction and Delos turns into an amusement park that's anything but amusing. Westworld has moments of camp and the look of a low-budget back-lot production, but two decades before Crichton revamped his idea to create Jurassic Park, this movie made the most of its interesting and exciting premise. --Jeff Shannon, Amazon.com

  • Westworld [1973] Westworld | DVD | (22/09/2008) from £6.98  |  Saving you £6.01 (46.30%)  |  RRP £12.99

    Peter Martin (Richard Benjamin) and John Blane (James Brolin) are two businessmen enjoying the ultimate frontier excursion. But when a programming error causes the town's ""residents"" to turn deadly the two must square off against a strong-willed steely-eyed automated gunslinger (Yul Brynner) who's determined to bring their vacation to a murderous conclusion...

  • The 13th Warrior [1999] The 13th Warrior | DVD | (28/02/2000) from £3.92  |  Saving you £11.70 (73.20%)  |  RRP £15.99

    What happened to The 13th Warrior? Directed by John McTiernan (Die Hard), it's the tale of young Arab ambassador Ahmahd ibn Fahdalan (Antonio Banderas), who's banished from his homeland for loving the wrong woman. On his journeys he associates with a ragtag group of Vikings who are travelling back to their homeland to confront a nefarious threat that's cloaked in such superstition they're forbidden to speak its name. It is prophesied by a witch doctor that 13 warriors must confront the evil; however, the 13th chosen man must not come from the north. Suddenly Banderas is forced into the breach, somewhat against his will. More poet than battle-worn warrior, he must not only fight the aggressors but come to terms with the unfamiliar Norse culture. What follows is a vigorous and brutal adventure reminiscent of Kurosawa's Seven Samurai. Sumptuous and invigorating battle sequences fill the screen from beginning to end as the brave Norsemen battle insurmountable odds. Sounds good. So why did this film, once known as the Eaters of the Dead, sit on studio shelves for two years? Presumably because of the thoughtless editing that trimmed down the film to its bare bones, crafting an actionfest out of an epic. It's not often that you crave for a movie to be longer, but The 13th Warrior would have benefited from fleshing out of its subplots and characters. On the surface it's good eye candy with some fine pulse-quickening moments, and Banderas and the accompanying cast turn in sympathetic performances, epitomising camaraderie in the face of impending doom. However, if you're looking for a good thematic tale from the Dark Ages (akin to Braveheart), you may be disappointed. --Jeremy Storey

  • The First Great Train Robbery [1978] The First Great Train Robbery | DVD | (19/03/2001) from £5.78  |  Saving you £7.21 (55.50%)  |  RRP £12.99

    A lively, humorous caper film of the first order, The First Great Train Robbery is Michael Crichton's ambitious adaptation of his own novel, which was inspired by the facts of the first known train robbery. Crichton sets this attractive, highly enjoyable film in London in 1855, where Edward Pierce (Sean Connery) and Agar (Donald Sutherland) plot to steal £25,000 in gold that is being transported by train to pay British troops in the Crimean War. Lesley-Anne Down plays Miriam, Pierce's sophisticated paramour and the third partner in the scheme; while Pierce and Agar make copies of four keys for the train's closely guarded safes, she uses her feminine wiles to distract a variety of officials and businessmen with connections to the gold.The film boasts a vividly authentic recreation of mid-Victorian England, all the more remarkable since the production was filmed primarily in Ireland on a budget of $6 million--a miraculously modest sum (even in 1978) for such a lavish-looking film. Credit is due to the splendid cinematography of Geoffrey Unsworth and Jerry Goldsmith's ebullient score, both of which enhance the film's look and feel. Although Crichton's directorial style seems somewhat detached and bloodless, he maintains a vivid respect for place and time, and his three leads are splendid in their charismatic roles. Meticulous attention to details of costuming and production design enhance the breezy fun of the heist, which climaxes with an exciting sequence on the rushing train, with Connery performing his own stunt work. While the later hit Mission: Impossible would take a similar sequence to its high-tech, high -velocity extreme, The First Great Train Robbbery remains an entertaining study of crime in a less hectic age, allowing Crichton to emphasise ingenuity over special effects. --Jeff Shannon, Amazon.com

  • Westworld (Steelbook--Exclusive to Amazon.co.uk) [Blu-ray] [1973] [Region Free] Westworld (Steelbook--Exclusive to Amazon.co.uk) | Blu Ray | (27/10/2014) from £25.00  |  Saving you £N/A (N/A%)  |  RRP £24.99

    Welcome to Delos, the high-tech Disneyland for adults that Michael Crichton created for Westworld, a nifty science fiction thriller from 1973 that also marked the popular novelist's feature-film directorial debut. The movie is so named because the vacationing buddies who travel to Delos (James Brolin, Richard Benjamin) choose Westworld as their destination (the other choices being Roman World and Medieval World), where they are free to indulge their movie-inspired fantasies of the Wild West). The place is populated by perfectly humanlike robots programmed and monitored to cater to every guest's fancy, from brothel beauties to black-hatted gunslingers (such as the villain played by Yul Brynner). But fun turns into abject horror when the robots--particularly Brynner's villain--begin to malfunction and Delos turns into an amusement park that's anything but amusing. Westworld has moments of camp and the look of a low-budget back-lot production, but two decades before Crichton revamped his idea to create Jurassic Park, this movie made the most of its interesting and exciting premise. --Jeff Shannon, Amazon.com

  • Physical Evidence [1988] Physical Evidence | DVD | (16/02/2004) from £N/A  |  Saving you £N/A (N/A%)  |  RRP £9.99

    A hard-boiled cop wakes up drenched in blood he remembers nothing but the police find a bloody murder weapon that matches his type. A criminal has been killed and he becomes the prime suspect...

  • The First Great Train Robbery The First Great Train Robbery | DVD | (24/04/2006) from £N/A  |  Saving you £N/A (N/A%)  |  RRP £12.99

    All aboard for runaway action and suspense in this riveting masterpiece from writer/director Michael Crichton! Starring Sean Connery Donald Sutherland and Lesley-Anne Down it's a spine-tingling and suavely performed adventure based on history's first great train robbery. This ingenious and wonderful crime caper delivers mile-a-minute thrills and breathtaking excitement. Connery is Edward Pierce a master thief who conceives a brilliant plan to steal a fortune in gold bars from a railway payroll car. But to pull off the most daring heist in history Pierce must join forces with a safecracker (Sutherland) and his own beautiful girlfriend (Down) in a series of intricately-plotted thefts that will test all of their nerve camaraderie and larcenous skill.

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