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Moulin Rouge -- Two-Disc Set | DVD | (03/05/2004)
from £3.45 | Saving you £18.26 (79.40%) | RRP
Watching Baz Luhrmann's award-winning Moulin Rouge is a lot like falling in love. It is total immersion cinema and while you're experiencing it ("watching" is too passive a word) you can't imagine that cinema could be for anything else. In the harsh, objective post-viewing daylight Lurhmann's gaudy spectacular might seem like a triumph of glossy style over any genuine substance, but as the film unfolds Lurhmann subjects his audience to a such a barrage of overtly stylised music, dance, colour, design and human passion that the senses are overwhelmed and critical faculties put on hold for the duration. The story is paper-thin, but that's hardly the point. Nicole Kidman's courtesan Satine falls for poor poet Ewan McGregor while pledged to a psychotic English Duke. The show goes on, of course, and we know it will end in tragedy--because that's the sort of story this is, and the only thing that makes it bearable is the knowledge that it's all just brilliant artifice. The third of Luhrman's "Red Curtain" trilogy (after Strictly Ballroom and Romeo + Juliet), Moulin Rouge reinvents musical cinema, acknowledging its debt to past masters like Vincente Minnelli (Gigi) and Michael Powell (The Red Shoes), but taking in the best of rock video along the way. The incessant MTV-style editing might seem like a distraction, but in the end a film insane enough to include Jim Broadbent's cover of "Like a Virgin" defines its own genre rules. On the DVD: this double-disc package sets new standards of presentation while also having an ideally appropriate light-heartedness. The extra features are as inventive in their use of the format as the film itself. Highlights include not one but two commentaries--one by Luhrmann, his designer and his cinematographer, the other with Lurhmann and his fellow scriptwriter Craig Pearce. We get two videos of "Lady Marmalade" and there are also uncut dance numbers, for example the fabulously dark Tango sequence in all its detail, which come with alternate camera angles so that you can edit your own version. There are whole segments on the glittery costumes, the three-dimensional model of Paris and the transformation of Kylie Minogue into the Green Fairy of absinthe. The film is presented in anamorphic widescreen (formatted for 16:9 TVs) with a visual aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and has lush, velvety Dolby Digital 5.1 or DTS 5.1 sound options. --Roz Kaveney
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (Two Disc Theatrical Edition) | DVD | (26/08/2003)
from £1.60 | Saving you £11.40 (76.10%) | RRP
With The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, the focus of Tolkien's epic story moves from the fantastic to the mythic, from magic and monsters towards men and their deeds, as the expanding panorama of Middle-earth introduces us to the Viking-like Riders of Rohan and the men of Gondor. Which is not to say that Peter Jackson's three-hour second instalment doesn't have its fair share of amazing new creatures--here we meet Wargs, Oliphaunts and winged Nazgul, to name three--just that the film is concerned more with myth-making on a heroic scale than the wide-eyed wonder of The Fellowship of the Ring. There's no time for recapitulation, as a host of new characters are introduced in rapid succession. In Rohan we meet the initially moribund King Theoden (Bernard Hill); his treacherous advisor Grima Wormtongue (Brad Dourif); his feisty niece Eowyn (Miranda Otto); and his strong-willed nephew Eomer (Karl Urban). Faramir (David Wenham), brother of Boromir, is the other principal human addition to the cast. The hobbits, though, encounter the two most remarkable new characters, both of whom are digitally generated: in Fangorn Forest, Merry and Pippin are literally carried away by Treebeard, a dignified old Ent; while Frodo and Sam capture the duplicitous Gollum, whose fate is inextricably intertwined with that of the Ring. The film stands or falls with Gollum. If the characterisation had gone the way of Jar Jar Binks, The Two Towers would have been ruined, notwithstanding all the spectacle and grandeur of the rest. But Gollum is a triumph, a tribute both to the computer animators and the motion-captured performance of Andy Serkis: his "dialogues", delivered theatre-like direct to the audience, are a masterstroke. Here and elsewhere Jackson is unafraid to make changes to the story line, bringing Frodo and Sam to Osgiliath, for example, or tipping Aragorn over a cliff. Yet the director's deft touch always seems to add not detract from Tolkien's vision. Just three among many examples: Aragorn's poignant dreams of Arwen (Liv Tyler); Gimli's comic repartee even in the heat of battle; and the wickedly effective siege weapons of the Uruk-Hai (which signify both Saruman's mastery and his perversion of technology). The climactic confrontation at Helm's Deep contains images the like of which have simply never been seen on film before. Almost unimaginably, there's so much more still to come in the Return of the King. On the DVD: The Two Towers two-disc set, like the Fellowship before it, features the theatrical version of the movie on the first disc, in glorious 2.35:1 widescreen, accompanied by Dolby 5.1 or Dolby Stereo sound options. As before, commentaries and the really in-depth features are held back for the extended four-disc version. Such as they are, all the extras are reserved for Disc Two. The 14-minute documentary On the Set is a run-of-the-mill publicity preview for the movie; more substantial is the 43-minute Return to Middle-Earth, another promotional feature, which at least has plenty of input from cast and crew. Much more interesting are the briefer pieces, notably: Sean Astin's charming silent short The Long and the Short of It, plus an amusing making-of featurette; a teaser trailer for the extended DVD release; and a tantalising 12-minute sneak peek at Return of the King, introduced by Peter Jackson, in which he declares nonchalantly that "Helm's Deep was just an opening skirmish"! --Mark Walker
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (Extended Edition) | DVD | (18/11/2003)
from £8.99 | Saving you £11.00 (55.00%) | RRP
With significant extra footage and a multitude of worthwhile bonus features this extended version of The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers is as colossal an achievement as its predecessor, The Fellowship of the Ring. There are valuable additions to the story, including two new scenes which might appease those who feel that the characterisation of Faramir was the film's most egregious departure from the book; fans will also appreciate an appearance of the Huorns at Helm's Deep plus a nod to the absence of Tom Bombadil. Seeing a little more interplay between the gorgeous Eowyn and Aragorn is welcome, as is a grim introduction to Eomer and Theoden's son. And among the many other additions, there's an extended epilogue that might not have worked in cinemas, but is more effective here in setting up The Return of the King. While the 30 minutes added to The Fellowship of the Ring felt just right in enriching the film, the extra footage in The Two Towers at times seems a bit extraneous--we see moments that in the theatrical version we had been told about, and some fleshed-out conversations and incidents are rather minor. But director Peter Jackson's vision of JRR Tolkien's world is so marvellous that it's hard to complain about any extra time we can spend there. While it may seem that there would be nothing left to say after the bevy of features on the extended Fellowship, the four commentary tracks and two discs of supplements on The Two Towers remain informative, fascinating, and funny, far surpassing the recycled materials on the two-disc theatrical version. Highlights of the 6.5 hours' worth of documentaries offer insight on the stunts, the design work, the locations and the creation of Gollum and--most intriguing for avid fans--the film's writers (including Jackson) discuss why they created events that weren't in the book. Providing variety are animatics, rough footage, countless sketches and a sound-mixing demonstration. Again, the most interesting commentary tracks are by Jackson and writers Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens and by 16 members of the cast (eight of whom didn't appear in the first film, and even including John Noble, whose Denethor character only appears in this extended cut). The first two instalments of Peter Jackson's trilogy have established themselves as the best fantasy films of all time, and among the best film trilogies of all time, and their extended-edition DVD sets have set a new standard for expanding on the already epic films and providing comprehensive bonus features. --David Horiuchi
O Brother, Where Art Thou? (2 Disc Set) | DVD | (05/11/2001)
from £2.50 | Saving you £13.47 (67.40%) | RRP
Only Joel and Ethan Coen, masters of quirky and ultra-stylish genre subversion, would dare nick the plotline of Homer's Odyssey for O Brother, Where Art Thou?, their comic picaresque saga about three cons on the run in 1930s Mississippi. Our wandering hero in this case is one Ulysses Everett McGill, a slick-tongued wise guy with a thing for hair pomade (George Clooney, blithely sending up his own dapper image) who talks his chain-gang buddies (Coen-movie regular John Turturro and newcomer Tim Blake Nelson) to light out after some buried loot he claims to know of. En route they come up against a prophetic blind man on a railroad truck, a burly one-eyed baddie (the ever-magnificent John Goodman), a trio of sexy singing ladies, a blues guitarist who's sold his soul to the devil, a brace of crooked politicos on the stump, a manic-depressive bank robber, and--well, you get the idea. Into this, their most relaxed film yet, the Coens have tossed a beguiling ragbag of inconsequential situations, a wealth of looping, left-field dialogue and a whole stash of gags both verbal and visual. O Brother (the title's lifted from Preston Sturges' classic 1941 comedy Sullivan's Travels) is furthermore graced with glowing, burnished photography from Roger Deakins and a masterly soundtrack from T-Bone Burnett that pays loving homage to American 30s folk-styles: blues, gospel, bluegrass, jazz and more. And just to prove that the brothers haven't lost their knack for bad-taste humour, we get a Ku Klux Klan rally choreographed like something between a Nuremberg rally and a Busby Berkeley musical. --Philip KempOn the DVD: This two-disc set duplicates the original single-disc release of the film which included a handful of cast and crew interviews, and adds an additional disc with more interviews, two brief behind-the-scenes featurettes about the production design and the post-production digital colouring of the film, a couple of storyboard-to-scene comparisons and a music video of "Man of Constant Sorrow". There's also a 16-minute documentary to promote the companion Down from the Mountain concert. Frankly there's not a lot here to justify spreading it across two discs: a more pleasing not to say generous offering would have been to cram all these extras onto Disc 1 and give us Down from the Mountain as the second disc. --Mark Walker
La Vie En Rose | DVD | (26/11/2008)
from £3.95 | Saving you £15.00 (75.00%) | RRP
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.
Ghost Whisperer - Series 4 - Complete | DVD | (01/03/2010)
from £8.95 | Saving you £22.04 (71.10%) | RRP
In the Fourth Season Melinda meets Eli James after a fire at Rockland University and says goodbye to her close friend Rick Payne who leaves Grandview for a research trip for the University. After experiencing her own personal tragedy Melinda discovers that her life will never be the same again. Ghost Whisperer plunges into new territory by literally rocking the foundations of the series with a new mythology - love transcends death.
Die Another Day | DVD | (03/11/2003)
from £1.94 | Saving you £22.90 (91.60%) | RRP
The 20th "official" 007 outing released in the 40th anniversary year of the series, Die Another Day is big, loud, spectacular, slick, predictable and as partially satisfying as most Bond movies have been for the last 30 years. Pierce Brosnan gives his best Bond performance to date, forced to suffer torture by scorpion venom administered by a North Korean dominatrix during the Madonna-warbled credits song. He traipses from Cuba to London to Iceland while feuding with a smug insomniac millionaire (Toby Stephens), who admits that he's an evil parody of Bond's own personality. There are many nods to the past: Halle Berry recreates Ursula Andress's entrance from Dr No, the gadget-packed car (which can become invisible) is a Goldfinger-style Aston Martin (albeit a brand-new model), the baddie's line in smuggled "conflict gems" and super-weapons derives from Diamonds Are Forever and the jet-pack from Thunderball can be seen in Q's lab. It's the longest of the franchise to date (two-and-a-quarter hours) and the first to augment stunts and physical effects with major CGI, though the best fight is traditional: a polite club fencing match between Brosnan and Stephens that gets out of hand and turns into a destructive hack-and-slash fest with multiple edged weapons. Berry may be the first Bond girl with an Oscar on her shelf, but she's still stuck with a bad hairdo as well as having to endure 007's worst chat-up lines. Amazingly, most of the old things here do still work, though it's a shame that director Lee Tamahori (Once Were Warriors) wasn't given a better script to play with. On the DVD: Die Another Day arrives on disc in a transfer that makes some of the CGI look less dodgy than it did in cinemas. The first disc includes two separate commentaries: an interesting, enthusiastic technical one with Tamahori and producer Michael Wilson, and a blander drone from Brosnan with input from "bad girl" actress Rosamund Pike. On Disc Two the main extra is "Inside Die Another Day", a 75-minute making-of with the usual 007 DVD extra mix of boosterism and solid background how-the-hell-they-did-it info. The "Region 2 exclusive" turns out to be another making-of, a video diary effort that takes a more interesting, wry approach to the mix of enterprise and chaos that is the Bond production machine. --Kim Newman
Chicago (Special Edition) | DVD | (12/09/2005)
from £4.50 | Saving you £9.82 (54.60%) | RRP
If you can't be famous...be infamous. At a time when crimes of passion result in celebrity headlines nightclub sensation Velma Kelly and spotlight-seeking Roxie Hart both find themselves sharing space on Chicago's famed Murderess Row! They also share Billy Flynn the town's slickest lawyer with a talent for turning notorious defendants into local legends. But in Chicago there's only room for one legend!
The Other Guys | Blu Ray | (24/01/2011)
from £4.89 | Saving you £18.10 (78.70%) | RRP
Detective Allen Gamble (Will Ferrell) and Detective Terry Hoitz (Mark Wahlberg) are a joke at the police station. Can this down and out duo nerd and hot headed tough guy overcome a plethora of humorous obstacles accidents and misunderstandings to bust the bad guys in a high profile case and gain the respect of their peers?
Jaws | DVD | (29/08/2005)
from £11.47 | Saving you £4.52 (28.30%) | RRP
Don't go in the water! Celebrate the 30th anniversary of this classic film with this fantastic 2-disc special edition. The peaceful resort town of Amity Massachusetts has always depended upon its thriving summer tourist trade to get it through the lean winter months ahead. But when a swimmer is killed by a great white shark Sheriff Brody faces great opposition when he proposes to close the beaches right before the 4th of July holiday weekend... Based on the novel by Peter
Umrao Jaan | DVD | (08/01/2007)
from £N/A | Saving you £N/A (N/A%) | RRP
In the year 1840 a young girl named Ameeran is kidnapped from her family by their neighbour and sold to a brothel. Ameeran renamed Umrao Jaan learns to read write dance sing and charm wealthy men. She is no common prostitute but a cultured woman trained to captivate men of wealth and taste. Years later Umrao Jaan catches the eye of Gauhar Mirza and fall in love. But Gauhar must marry to please his family and Umrao's heart is broken.
The Holiday | DVD | (12/11/2007)
from £5.88 | Saving you £7.11 (54.70%) | RRP
Iris is in love with a man who is about to marry another woman. Across the globe Amanda realizes the man she lives with has been unfaithful. Two women who have never met and live 6000 miles apart find themselves in the exact same place. They meet online at a home exchange website and impulsively switch homes for the holiday. Iris moves into Amanda's L.A. house in sunny California as Amanda arrives in the snow covered English countryside. Shortly after arriving at their destinations both women find the last thing either wants or expects: a new romance. Amanda is charmed by Iris' handsome brother Graham and Iris with inspiration provided by legendary screenwriter Arthur mends her heart when she meets film composer Miles.
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (Five Disc Collector's Box Set) | DVD | (18/11/2003)
from £22.64 | Saving you £N/A (N/A%) | RRP
This Collector's Box of The Two Towers contains the four-disc extended version of the movie (also available separately) as well as three unique additional extras. Like The Fellowship of the Ring before it, the whole is packaged in a chunky cardboard outer box. Inside is a limited edition polystone statue of Gollum, complete with fish, perched on a moss-covered base (it weighs in at a solid three-and-a-half pounds and comes with a certificate of authenticity). Unlike the "Argonath" bookends, the statue is purely decorative: sculpted by the same artist who created Gollum for the screen it's painted in faithfully "lifelike" colours and has an authentically oily sheen to its flesh that makes it a somewhat less-than-attractive ornament for your mantelpiece. Fans, though, will appreciate the attention to detail and the statue's unique pedigree. Also included is a box within a box containing yet another bonus DVD, this one devoted to the creation of the Sideshow Weta statue series. Some 24 minutes long, this documentary is introduced by Peter Jackson, who shows us his own extraordinary collection of statues; Jackson and Weta supremo Richard Taylor explain how they insisted that these models were created by the same artists who had worked on the movies, ensuring complete authenticity (the actors themselves are suitably appreciative). Taylor narrates in detail the whole production process. There's also a printed 44-page companion piece specifically devoted to Gollum, showing his evolution from early sketches to sculpted maquette to final on-screen character. --Mark Walker
Definitive Edition - X-Men | DVD | (05/03/2007)
from £3.19 | Saving you £9.80 (75.40%) | RRP
Born into a world filled with prejudice are children who possess extraordinary and dangerous powers - the result of unique genetic mutations. Cyclops unleashes bolts of energy from his eyes. Storm can manipulate the weather at will. Rogue absorbs the life force of anyone she touches. But under the tutelage of Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart) these and other outcasts learn to harness their powers for the good of mankind. Now they must protect those who fear them as the nefarious Magneto (Ian McKellen) who believes humans and mutants can never co-exist unveils his sinister plan for the future...
Hugh Grant | DVD | (13/02/2006)
from £9.94 | Saving you £10.05 (50.30%) | RRP
Love Actually: The story of a group of people who find themselves surrounded by love... There's the new Prime Minister who falls for his personal assistant the Prime Minister's sister Karan who realises that her husband is attracted to his secretary. Author Jamie who flees England to escape his unfaithful girlfriend and then falls for his housekeeper. Movie stand-ins John and Judy who become attracted to each other on the film set. Recently widowed Daniel who helps his ste
Moulin Rouge | DVD | (23/04/2007)
from £10.00 | Saving you £N/A (N/A%) | RRP
A spectacle beyond anything you've ever witnessed. An experience beyond everything you've ever imagined. Behind the red velvet curtain the ultimate seduction of your senses is about to begin. Welcome to the Moulin Rouge! Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor sing dance and scale the heights of passionate abandon in this most talked-about movie from visionary director Baz Luhrmann (William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet Strictly Ballroom). Enter a tantalizing world that celebrates truth beauty freedom and above all things love.
Moulin Rouge (Special Edition) | DVD | (08/02/2006)
from £18.78 | Saving you £4.21 (18.30%) | RRP
Christian [Ewan McGregor] a young writer with a magical gift for poetry defies his bourgeois father by moving to the bohemian underworld of Montmartre Paris. He is taken in by the absinthe- soaked artist Toulouse- Lautrec whose party- hard life centres around the Moulin Rouge a world of sex drugs electricity & the shocking Can-Can. Christian falls into a passionate but ultimately doomed love affair with Satine the Sparkling Diamond [Nicole Kidman] the most beautiful courtesan
Definitive Edition - X-Men 2 | DVD | (05/03/2007)
from £1.99 | Saving you £11.00 (84.70%) | RRP
The time has come for those who are different to stand united... The X-Men have to band together to find a mutant assassin who has made an attempt on the President's life while the Mutant Academy at Westchester is attacked by military forces prompting some uncomfortable home truths for Wolverine...
Sounds Like Teen Spirit | DVD | (14/09/2009)
from £16.25 | Saving you £-1.55 (-10.50%) | RRP
Sounds Like Teen Spirit is a comedic documentary feature film directed by Jamie Johnson and produced by the veteran team of Stephen Woolley and Elizabeth Karlsen (The Crying Game The End of the Affair and How to Lose Friends and Influence People). The film follows the contestants of the 2007 Junior Eurovision Song Contest from the regional heats to the eventual final in Rotterdam. Focusing primarily on the heats in Belgium and then following the acts from Cyprus Georgia Bulgaria and Belgium. The film was released in UK cinemas on May 8th and was received with open arms by critics and audiences alike. The publicity for the film was outstanding with the Belgian entrants TRUST playing at the closing party for the East End Film Festival and Giorgos the Cypriot contestant appearing live on ITV1's This Morning and with The Evening Standard leading the way by declaring the film to be the most likely contender for being the next Slumdog Millionaire.