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Very Annie Mary | DVD | (14/04/2003)
from £12.99 | Saving you £-11.99 (-120.00%) | RRP
Captivating and heart-warming, when it was released in 2001 Very Annie-Mary was greeted as the latest in a long line of small, quirky British comedies. In fact, Very Annie-Mary is a proudly Welsh film, celebrating the eccentricity of a small town in the valleys where the inhabitants certainly suffer deprivation but are by no means isolated from the outside world. They simply plough their own furrow. None more so than Annie-Mary herself, a 30-year-old woman trapped in gawky adolescence by the death of her mother and subsequent years of repression by her father, the Pavarotti-obsessed town baker (brilliant Jonathan Pryce). In a plot slightly reminiscent of Little Voice, she has lost her prize-winning singing voice, apparently forever. Played with resolute intensity by Rachel Griffiths, Annie-Mary is hardly odder than her fellow townsfolk. But when her father has a stroke and she is thrown on her own awkward resources to fulfil both her personal dreams and those of her mortally sick friend Bethan, she finds unique comic ways to cope with disaster. Redemption comes with the return of her ability to sing. The excellent cast includes cameos from Ioan Gruffudd and Matthew Rhys as the gay couple who run the sweet shop and Ruth Madoc as a libidinous widow. Everyone delivers all-stops-out performances in even the smallest roles. The promising script is loaded with one-liners; but its constituent parts promise more than they eventually deliver. --Piers Ford
Hot Tub Time Machine | Blu Ray | (30/08/2010)
from £24.99 | Saving you £0.00 (0.00%) | RRP
Hot Tub Time Machine hits the bull's-eye: it's a rude, crude comedy with enough smarts and emotional sweetness to make it completely entertaining. Seeking to bring some youthful optimism back to their failed, miserable lives, three middle-aged guys--Adam (John Cusack), Nick (Craig Robinson), and Lou (Rob Corddry)--go to a mountain resort where they spent some of their wildest days (reluctantly dragging along Adam's nephew, Jacob, played by newcomer Clark Duke). A drunken accident in the titular hot tub sends them swirling back to 1986, where each of them decides to risk changing the future (and possibly erasing Jacob from existence) by doing things just a little differently. A plot summary doesn't capture the movie's rambunctious, daffy spirit as much as? well, the ridiculous title: this is a movie called Hot Tub Time Machine! Any expectation you may have will be met and surpassed. John Cusack delivers another underplayed yet marvellously funny performance, his best since High Fidelity; Clark Duke, from the TV show Greek, proves a promising young comic talent. But the movie really belongs to Robinson and Corddry, who've been floating around the edges of tons of comedies--some have been good, some have been bad, but they've both been consistently funny even in crappy movies. Hot Tub Time Machine gives them centre stage and lets them reveal the comic chaos they can deliver. It helps, but is not necessary, to have lived through the '80s to find Hot Tub Time Machine exquisitely silly. --Bret Fetzer
The Scary Movie Trilogy (Box Set) | DVD | (04/10/2004)
from £11.99 | Saving you £14.69 (42.00%) | RRP
Scary Movie: A year after disposing the body of a man they accidently killed a group of dumb teenagers are stalked by a bumbling serial killer. A parody of modern horror films about a group of teenagers who are being terrorised by a serial killer. Some of the send-ups include: Scream I Know What You Did Last Summer The Blair Witch Project The Sixth Sense and The Matrix. Scary Movie 2: All your favourite Scary Movie characters are back in a laugh-packed sequel that scares up even more irreverent fun than the original! Marlon Wayans Shawn Wayans and Anna Faris lead a stellar cast that takes extreme pleasure in skewering Hollywood's most frightening feature films and spoofing popular culture. Also starring Regina Hall Christopher Kennedy Masterson Tori Spelling plus Tim Curry Chris Elliott and James Woods - nothing's sacred and anything goes in this outlandish must-see comedy... Scary Movie 3: Fresh from college Cindy Campbell is now a roving TV reporter who sets out to find a news story among global developments including killer videotapes prophecies crops circles talentless white rappers and Michael Jackson... Great trilogies come in threes and this third instalment of the Scary Movie series is the funniest yet!
The Frighteners | DVD | (26/12/2005)
from £3.14 | Saving you £-3.00 (-15.00%) | RRP
Dead yet? In the sleepy little town of Fairwater a monstrous evil has awakened... an evil so powerful its reach extends beyond the grave. Director Peter Jackson and executive Producer Robert Zemeckis unleash a riveting thriller with the most spectacular special effects this side of the hereafter. For Frank Bannister (Michael J Fox) death is a great way to make a living: ridding haunted houses of their unwelcome guests. But he's in cahoots with the very ghosts he promises to evict! It's the perfect scam..until frank finds himself at the centre of a dark mystery. A diabolical spirit is on a murderous rampage and the whole town believes Frank is behind it. Boasting music by Danny Elfman and co-starring Trini Alvarado Jeffrey Combs and John Astin this supernatural chiller is so fiendishly entertaining it's scary!
Tropic Thunder (3-Disc Directors Cut) | DVD | (26/01/2009)
from £22.49 | Saving you £4.50 (16.70%) | RRP
It's not really a knock to say that nothing in Tropic Thunder is funnier than its first five minutes, so sly that--especially for people watching in theaters--you don't realise right away they are the opening minutes of the movie. This outrageous comedy begins with a series of fake previews, each introducing one of the main characters in the film-proper (not that there's anything proper about this film) and each bearing the familiar logo of a different motion picture studio: Universal, DreamWorks SKG, et al. Such playing fast and loose with corporate talismans verges on sacrilege, but it's an index of how much le tout Tinseltown endorses the movie as a demented valentine to itself. The premise is that the cast of a would-be "Son of Rambo" movie shooting in some Southeast Asian jungle get into a real shooting war with drug-smuggling montagnards. Don't ask--though the movie does have an answer--why such highly paid, usually ultra-pampered personnel as superhero Tugg Speedman (Ben Stiller), Mozart of fart comedy Jeff Portnoy (Jack Black), hip-hop artist Alpa Chino (Brandon T. Jackson), and five-time Oscar-winner Kirk Lazarus from Aus-try-leeah (Robert Downey Jr.) should be running through the jungle unattended and very vulnerable. It matters only that the real-life cast has a high time kidding their own profession and flexing their comedic muscles. Bonus points go to Stiller for co-writing the script (with Justin Theroux) and directing, and to Downey, brilliant as a white actor surgically turned black actor for his role and utterly committed to staying in character no matter what ("I don't drop character till I done the DVD commentary"). Be warned: The movie, too, is committed--to being an equal-opportunity offender. Its political incorrectness extends not only to Lazarus's black-like-me posturing but also Speedman's recent, Sean Penn–style Oscar bid playing a cognitively challenged farmboy--or, in Lazarus's deathless phrase, "going the full retard." Others in the cast include Steve Coogan as a director out of his depth, Nick Nolte as the Viet-vet novelist whose book inspired the film-within-the-film, Matthew McConaughey as Speedman's sun-blissed agent back home, and Tom Cruise--bald, fat-suited, and profane--as an epically repulsive studio head. Two hours running time is a mite excessive, but otherwise, what's not to like? --Richard T. Jameson