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  • Where Eagles Dare [1968] Where Eagles Dare | DVD | (01/06/2006) from £4.75  |  Saving you £9.24 (66.00%)  |  RRP £13.99

    Scorned by reviewers when it came out, Where Eagles Dare has acquired a cult following over the years for its unashamed and highly concentrated dose of commando death-dealing to legions of Nazi machine-gun fodder. In 1968 Clint Eastwood was just getting used to the notion that he might be a world-class movie star; Richard Burton, whose image had been shaped equally by classical theatre and his headline-making romance with Elizabeth Taylor, was eager to try his hand at the action genre. Author Alistair MacLean's novel The Guns of Navarone had inspired the film that started the 1960s vogue for World War II military capers, so he was prevailed upon to write the screenplay (his first). The central location, an impregnable Alpine stronghold locked in ice and snow, is surpassing cool, but the plot and action are ultra-mechanical, and the switcheroo gamesmanship of just who is the undercover double (triple?) agent on the mission becomes aggressively silly. --Richard T Jameson

  • Saving Private Ryan [1998] Saving Private Ryan | DVD | (06/11/2000) from £3.99  |  Saving you £12.00 (75.00%)  |  RRP £15.99

    Since its release in 1998, Steven Spielberg's D-Day drama Saving Private Ryan has become hugely influential: everything, from the opening sequence of Gladiator ("Saving Marcus Aurelius") to the marvellous 10-hour TV series Band of Brothers, has been made in its shadow. There have been many previous attempts to recreate the D-Day landings on screen (notably, the epic The Longest Day), but thanks to Spielberg's freewheeling hand-held camerawork, Ryan was the first time an audience really felt like they were there, storming up Omaha Beach in the face of withering enemy fire. After the indelible opening sequence, however, the film is not without problems. The story, though based on an American Civil War incident, feels like it was concocted simply to fuel Spielberg's sentimental streak. In standard Hollywood fashion the Germans remain a faceless foe (with the exception of one charmless character who turns out to be both a coward and a turncoat); and the Tom Hanks-led platoon consists of far too many stereotypes: the doughty Sergeant; the thick-necked Private; the Southern man religious sniper; the cowardly Corporal. Matt Damon seems improbably clean-cut as the titular Private in need of rescue (though that may well be the point); and why do they all run straight up that hill towards an enemy machine gun post anyway? Some non-US critics have complained that Ryan portrays only the American D-Day experience, but it is an American film made and financed by Americans after all. Accepting both its relatively narrow remit and its lachrymose inclinations, Saving Private Ryan deserves its place in the pantheon of great war pictures. On the DVD: Saving Private Ryan on disc comes in a good-quality anamorphic 1.85:1 transfer with a suitably dynamic Dolby Digital 5.1 sound mix in which bullets fly all around your living room. Extra features are pretty minimal, with a standard 30-minute "making of" piece called "Into the Breach" and two trailers. There are text notes on the cast and crew as well as the production, and a brief message from Mr Spielberg himself about why he decided to make the movie. --Mark Walker

  • The Dam Busters [DVD] [1954] The Dam Busters | DVD | (14/06/2010) from £3.99  |  Saving you £12.00 (75.00%)  |  RRP £15.99

    Dr Barnes Wallis was possessed with a seemingly crazy idea - the creation of a bouncing bomb designed to destroy the Ruhr dams and paralyse the enemy's industrial nerve centre. He fought persistent scepticism and disbelief that such a feat was possible though even with the matchless skill of RAF Wing Commander Guy Gibson and his squadron could such a mission succeed?

  • The Bridge On The River Kwai [1957] The Bridge On The River Kwai | DVD | (04/12/2000) from £4.99  |  Saving you £18.00 (78.30%)  |  RRP £22.99

    Based on the true story of the building of a bridge on the Burma railway by British prisoners-of-war held under a savage Japanese regime in World War II, The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957) is one of the greatest war films ever made. The film received seven Oscars, including Best Picture, Director, Performance (Alex Guinness), for Sir Malcolm Arnold's superb music, and for the screenplay from the novel by Pierre Boulle (who also wrote Monkey Planet, the inspiration for Planet of the Apes). The story does take considerable liberties with history, including the addition of an American saboteur played by William Holden, and an entirely fictitious but superbly constructed and thrilling finale. Made on a vast scale, the film reinvented the war movie as something truly epic, establishing the cinematic beachhead for The Longest Day (1962), Patton (1970) and A Bridge Too Far (1977). It also proved a turning-point in director David Lean's career. Before he made such classic but conventionally scaled films as In Which We Serve (1942) and Hobson's Choice (1953). Afterwards there would only be four more films, but their names are Lawrence of Arabia (1962), Dr Zhivago (1965), Ryan's Daughter (1970) and A Passage to India (1984). On the DVD: Too often the best extras come attached to films that don't really warrant them. Not so here, where a truly great film has been given the attention it deserves. The first disc presents the film in the original extra-wide CinemaScope ratio of 2.55:1, in an anamorphically enhanced transfer which does maximum justice to the film's superb cinematography. The sound has been transferred from the original six-track magnetic elements into 5.1 Dolby Digital and far surpasses what many would expect from a 1950s' feature. The main bonus on the first disc is an isolated presentation of Malcolm Arnold's great Oscar-winning music score, in addition to which there is a trivia game, and maps and historical information linked to appropriate clips. The second disc contains a new, specially produced 53-minute "making of" documentary featuring many of those involved in the production of the movie. This gives a rich insight into the physical problems of making such a complex epic on location in Ceylon. Also included are the original trailer and two short promotional films from the time of release, one of which is narrated by star William Holden. Finally there is an "appreciation" by director John Milius, an extensive archive of movie posters and artwork, and a booklet that reproduces the text of the film's original 1957 brochure. --Gary S Dalkin

  • Fame [1980] Fame | DVD | (22/09/2003) from £2.17  |  Saving you £10.00 (71.50%)  |  RRP £13.99

    This early effort by director Alan Parker is lively but jagged as it follows four students through their years in the New York City High School for the Performing Arts. Rather predictably, the kids fall into four clearly defined stereotypes: brazen, gay and hypersensitive, prickly, shy. Fame makes up for a disjointed presentation with a lot of heart and a great soundtrack (for which it won two Academy Awards). The hopes and disappointments, failures and successes of these teens are fodder for emotional scenes and exuberant dancing in the streets. It also turned out to be the first of many imitators and spawned a popular television series. (It was the breakout film for the short-lived feature-film career of Irene Cara, who sang the title song.) --Rochelle O'Gorman

  • Inglourious Basterds [DVD] [2009] Inglourious Basterds | DVD | (07/12/2009) from £3.10  |  Saving you £16.89 (84.50%)  |  RRP £19.99

  • The Battle of Britain [Vanilla Version] The Battle of Britain | DVD | (23/04/2007) from £4.99  |  Saving you £15.00 (75.00%)  |  RRP £19.99

    Featuring a stellar cast, including Michael Caine, Trevor Howard, Laurence Olivier, Christopher Plummer, Michael Redgrave, Robert Shaw and Susannah York, Battle of Britainis a spectacular retelling of a true story that shows courage at its inspiring best. Few defining moments can change the outcome of war. But when the outnumbered Royal Air Force defied insurmountable odds in engaging the German Luftwaffe, they may well have altered the course of history!

  • La Vie En Rose [2007] La Vie En Rose | DVD | (13/10/2008) from £3.88  |  Saving you £8.80 (67.70%)  |  RRP £12.99

    On stage she was a singing legend. But for Edith Piaf life was the greatest performance of all... The extraordinary life of Edith Piaf; from the mean streets of the Belleville district of Paris to the dazzling limelight of New York's most famous concert halls Piaf's life was a constant battle to sing and survive to live and to love... A swirling impressionistic portrait of an artist who regretted nothing writer/director Olivier Dahan's La Vie En Rose stars Marion Cotillard in a blazing performance as the legendary French icon.

  • Platoon [1987] Platoon | DVD | (18/09/2000) from £4.95  |  Saving you £11.04 (69.00%)  |  RRP £15.99

    Winning a raft of awards, not least of which four Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director, Oliver Stone's Platoon was a box-office smash heralding Hollywood's second wave of Vietnam war films. Where predecessors The Deer Hunter (1978) and Apocalypse Now (1979) were elaborate epics, Platoon simply showed the daily reality of the war from the point of view of ordinary soldiers. Stone's own service in Vietnam gives his work a unique authenticity. Charlie Sheen gives his best performance to date, enduring a series of increasingly large-scale and bloody battles which retrospectively make one wonder why Saving Private Ryan was hailed as so new. Against this gruelling verity the film falters over the symbolic conflict between good and evil sergeants played by Willem Dafoe and Tom Berenger. Even though this was also based in real life, it strikes a too conventionally Hollywood-like note in a film which otherwise maintains much of the raw power of Stone's other film from 1986, Salvador. Johnny Depp fans should look out for an early appearance by the star. Stone would return to Vietnam with the more sophisticated Born on the Fourth of July (1989) and Heaven and Earth (1993). On the DVD: The 50-minute documentary "Tour of the Inferno" goes beyond the usual "making-of" to present a personal account both of the film and of Stone's own time in Vietnam. Likewise the two audio commentaries--one by Stone, the other by Captain Dale Dye, fellow veteran and military technical advisor--range between the making of the film and the degree to which the actors came to inhabit their parts, to their own wartime experiences. Both commentaries bring a fresh level of appreciation and understanding to the film. Also included is the original trailer and three TV commercials, together with well-presented stills galleries of behind-the-scenes photos and poster art. Following a credit sequence marred by dirt on the print, the anamorphically enhanced 1.77:1 image is sharp and clear. The many night scenes are very dark but remain easily comprehensible. The three-channel Dolby Digital sound is suitably raw and powerful, though an early sequence featuring rain in the jungle suffers from very distracting repeated drop-outs in the left channel. --Gary S Dalkin

  • Apocalypse Now Redux [1979] Apocalypse Now Redux | DVD | (22/04/2002) from £3.75  |  Saving you £13.84 (76.90%)  |  RRP £17.99

    Following the example set by his old pals Steven Spielberg and George Lucas, Francis Ford Coppola has revisited a classic that no-one ever thought needed enhancement and produced Apocalypse Now Redux, a remastered and extended version of his hallucinogenic Vietnam nightmare that adds some 50 minutes of extra material. On the plus side, certain extended sequences--such as Kilgore's bombing-cum-surfing raid and the final battle of nerves between Martin Sheen and Marlon Brando--add greater depth to our appreciation of the film. On the debit side, the lengthy French plantation interlude and the squalid fate of the Playboy bunnies simply underscore what we already know about war and hell and the depressing futility of it all. It's possible that Apocalyspe Now is not really about Vietnam at all, but is in fact a despairing commentary on the dissolution of contemporary American society; it's also possible that Apocalypse Now Redux, for all its epic scale and visceral power, ultimately fails to make the film's real message any clearer than before. Either way, it remains one of the greatest (anti-)war films ever made. On the DVD: Apocalypse Now Redux is self-recommending on DVD, especially with vividly remastered Dolby 5.1 sound (the whirling helicopter blades are dizzying) and an anamorphic widescreen picture. Disappointingly the disc contains no extra features other than a trailer for the Redux version. Coppola has provided excellent commentaries for his Godfather trilogy so it's a shame not to have his comments here; and the justly famous "Heart of Darkness" documentary is conspicuous by its absence, too. --Mark Walker

  • The Longest Day - Single Disc Edition [1962] The Longest Day - Single Disc Edition | DVD | (06/10/2003) from £4.99  |  Saving you £13.00 (72.30%)  |  RRP £17.99

    On June 6 1944 the Allied Invasion of France marked the beginning of the end of Nazi domination over Europe. The attack involved 3 000 000 men 11 000 planes and 4 000 ships comprising the largest armada the world has ever seen. Presented in its original black & white version 'The Longest Day' is a vivid hour-by-hour re-creation of this historic event. Featuring a stellar international cast and told from the perspectives of both sides it is a fascinating look at the massive

  • Battle Of The Bulge [1965] Battle Of The Bulge | DVD | (05/06/2006) from £4.39  |  Saving you £11.60 (72.50%)  |  RRP £15.99

    The last desperate fight that changed the course of history. Five months after D-Day most American soldiers think the German army is broken. The Germans think otherwise. In an attempt to buy time to fill the skies with their invincible new jets they launch one fast furious offensive: the Battle of the Bulge. For this epic recreation of one of World War II's most crucial confrontations director Ken Annakin (The Longest Day) captures the explosive action of massive f

  • The Heroes Of Telemark [1965] The Heroes Of Telemark | DVD | (28/02/2008) from £4.49  |  Saving you £8.50 (65.40%)  |  RRP £12.99

    Physics Professor Dr Pederson (Kirk Douglas) and underground leader Straud (Richard Harris) must convince British Intelligence that the Nazis are planning to build the A-bomb. The Norse Hydro Plant at Telemark is central to enemy strategy and the Allies decide to send in a task force to destroy it. Legendary director Anthony Mann (Winchester 73 El Cid The Fall of the Roman Empire) tells the story of nine courageous and indomitable Norwegians without whom the Second World War may ha

  • The Battle Of Midway [1976] The Battle Of Midway | DVD | (02/05/2005) from £3.99  |  Saving you £2.00 (33.40%)  |  RRP £5.99

    A star-studded World War II drama about the great air and naval battle in which the underdog Americans - outnumbered by the huge Japanese flotilla - won American military supremacy in the Pacific. Leading them to their heroic victory is Admiral Nimitz and Captain Matt Garth (Heston) the latter a junior officer whose life is complicated by his son's romance with a Japanese-American girl...

  • Tora! Tora! Tora! [1970] Tora! Tora! Tora! | DVD | (04/06/2001) from £4.83  |  Saving you £15.16 (75.80%)  |  RRP £19.99

    Here is just one of the many mishaps chronicled in Tora! Tora! Tora!: "Sir, there's a large formation of planes coming in from the north, 140 miles, 3 degrees east." "Yeah? Don't worry about it." The epic film shows the bombing of Pearl Harbour from both sides in the historic first American-Japanese coproduction: American director Richard Fleischer oversaw the complicated production (the Japanese sequences were directed by Toshio Masuda and Kinji Fukasaku, after Akira Kurosawa withdrew from the film), wrestling a sprawling story with dozens of characters into a manageable, fairly easy-to-follow film. The first half maps out the collapse of diplomacy between the nations and the military blunders that left naval and air forces sitting ducks for the impending attack, while the second half is an amazing re-creation of the devastating battle. While Tora! Tora! Tora! lacks the strong central characters that anchor the best war films, the real star of the film is the climactic 30-minute battle, a massive feat of cinematic engineering that expertly conveys the surprise, the chaos and the immense destruction of the only attack by a foreign power on American soil since the Revolutionary war. The special effects won a well-deserved Oscar, but the film was shut out of every other category by, ironically, the other epic war picture of the year, Patton. --Sean Axmaker, Amazon.com

  • Battle Of The River Plate [1956] Battle Of The River Plate | DVD | (11/06/2007) from £4.49  |  Saving you £8.50 (65.40%)  |  RRP £12.99

    Something of a swan song for the legendary Michael Powell-Emeric Pressburger partnership, 1956's The Battle of the River Plate is their penultimate film together (the following year's Ill Met By Moonlight was the last). Shot in a semi-documentary style that stands apart from the "magical realism" of much of their previous work--Canterbury Tales, A Matter of Life and Death, The Red Shoes--the film tells the story of the pursuit of the German pocket battleship Graf Spee by three British cruisers off the River Plate in Uruguay during November 1939. Incorporating actual wartime footage adds to the authentic air, albeit one that sits uneasily with the obviously studio-bound look of the rest. Among the solid cast Peter Finch stands out as the beleaguered Captain Langsdorff of the Graf Spee, while John Gregson is his counterpart, the stalwart British hero type. Things get a bit odd when Christopher Lee pops up in the unlikely role of a Latin-American nightclub boss. It's an atypical Powell and Pressburger picture and not exactly their best, but still a fine World War II picture that documents an important incident in the opening salvos of the war. --Mark Walker

  • Apocalypse Now [1979] Apocalypse Now | DVD | (01/01/2001) from £4.99  |  Saving you £8.00 (61.60%)  |  RRP £12.99

    Francis Ford Coppola's stunning vision of man's heart of darkness revealed through the madness of the Vietnam War. Captain Willard (Martin Sheen) receives orders to seek out a renegade military outpost led by the mysterious Colonel Kurtz (Marlon Brando). Willard's mission: ""Terminate with extreme prejudice."" One of the most powerful films of all time Apocalypse Now was nominated for eight Academy Awards and won Two for Best Sound and Best Cinematography. Based on the novel 'Heart of

  • Glorious 39 [DVD] [2009] Glorious 39 | DVD | (29/03/2010) from £3.89  |  Saving you £14.10 (78.40%)  |  RRP £17.99

    This tense psychological thriller is set betweet present day London and the idyllic British countryside around the outbreak of the Second World War. Anne a budding young actress stumbles across secret recordings of a sinister Nazi appeasement plot that will stop at nothing to achieve its aims. As close friends die in suspicious circumstances she finds herself in extreme danger and finds out how badly she has been betrayed.

  • The Eagle Has Landed [1977] The Eagle Has Landed | DVD | (19/07/2007) from £3.85  |  Saving you £1.81 (30.20%)  |  RRP £5.99

    This 1976 adventure story set in World War II concerns a Nazi plot to kidnap Churchill from his retreat--or murder him if need be. The large, great cast and a director, John Sturges, who's been down this road of ensemble action before (The Magnificent Seven, The Great Escape) make this project exciting if not as memorable as Sturges' more famous works. The weak ending doesn't help. --Tom Keogh, Amazon.com

  • Beneath Hill 60 [DVD] [2010] Beneath Hill 60 | DVD | (11/10/2010) from £3.89  |  Saving you £9.10 (70.10%)  |  RRP £12.99

    Beneath Hill 60

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