An angel in Berlin decides to become human after falling in love with a mortal. One of Wim Wenders' biggest commercial successes and arguably his most accessible film to date Wings of Desire (aka: Der Himmel uber Berlin) centres around two trench-coated angels Damiel (Bruno Ganz) and Cassiel (Otto Sander) wandering the streets of post-war pre-unification Berlin. Invisible to humans they listen to the tortured thoughts of the mortals occasionally dispensing heavenly solace to those in need. An encounter with a beautiful circus trapeze artist Marion (Solveig Dommartin) sees Damiel falling in love and longing to give up his immortal state in order to experience the simple joys of human experience. Damiel is assisted in his transformation by an American actor (Peter Falk) filming on location in the city himself a former angel who has traded in his wings for a mortal existence. Scripted by Wenders and respected German playwright and novelist Peter Handke the film is impeccably shot by legendary cinematographer Henri Alekan (Jean Cocteau's cameraman on La belle et la bete) blossoming from the monochrome perspective of the angels to colour following Damiel's eventual transmutation. As ever with Wenders music plays an important part and the film features rare on-screen performances by the bands Crime And The City Solution and Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds. Multi-award winning (including the Best Director prize at the 1987 Cannes Film Festival) and hugely acclaimed Wings Of Desire is a delightfully poetic celebration of the human condition. It famously inspired Brad Silberling's 1998 hit film City of Angels starring Nicolas Cage and Meg Ryan. In 1993 Wenders reunited with Ganz Sander Dommartin and Falk along with Nastassja Kinski and Willem Dafoe for a sequel Faraway So Close!.
One of the cinema's great disappearing acts came to a close with the release of The Thin Red Line in late 1998. Terrence Malick, the cryptic recluse who withdrew from Hollywood visibility after the release of his visually enthralling masterpiece Days of Heaven (1978), returned to the director's chair after a 20-year coffee break. Malick's comeback vehicle is a fascinating choice: a wide-ranging adaptation of a World War II novel (filmed once before, in 1964) by James Jones. The battle for Guadalcanal Island gives Malick an opportunity to explore nothing less than the nature of life, death, God, and courage. Let that be a warning to anyone expecting a conventional war flick; Malick proves himself quite capable of mounting an exciting action sequence, but he's just as likely to meander into pure philosophical noodling--or simply let the camera contemplate the first steps of a newly born tropical bird or the sinister skulk of a crocodile. This is not especially an actors' movie--some faces go by so quickly they barely register--but the standouts are bold: Nick Nolte as a career-minded colonel, Elias Koteas as a deeply spiritual captain who tries to protect his men, Ben Chaplin as a G.I. haunted by lyrical memories of his wife. The backbone of the film is the ongoing discussion between a wry sergeant (Sean Penn) and an ethereal, almost holy private newcomer (Jim Caviezel). The picture's sprawl may be a result of Malick's method of "finding" a film during shooting and editing, and in some ways The Thin Red Line seems vaguely, intriguingly incomplete. Yet it casts a spell like almost nothing else of its time, and Malick's visionary images are a challenge and a signpost to the rest of his filmmaking generation. --Robert Horton
The Timeless Epic from Francis Ford Coppola In a pristine new transfer supervised by Francis Ford Coppola Presented in the original (2.35:1) theatrical aspect ratioOne of the most iconic films ever made and one of the most disturbing dramatisations of the Vietnam War ever seen, Francis Ford Coppolas Apocalypse Now is cinema at its most epic and unforgettable. Traumatised soldier Captain Benjamin L. Willard has been chosen for a highly classified mission. He must journey along the notorious Nung river and into the savage depths of war torn Cambodia in search of the mysterious Colonel Kurtz. Deemed insane and a danger to the war effort, Kurtz must be terminated with extreme prejudice. But the closer he gets to Kurtz the closer he gets to his own heart of darkness.
A girl from a rich family in Chelsea is bored and decides to go slumming in depressed Battersea. She gets a flat and starts working in a factory and makes some friends there. One of her friends is pregnant but abortion is illegal...
Midway is the epic, real-life saga about an undermanned American fleet and the brave Navy leaders and pilots who triumphed, against the odds, over a powerful adversary. With democracy and freedom at stake, these U.S. brothers-in-arms conquered the Imperial Japanese Navy at the Battle of Midway, a most stunning clash by air and sea which marked a heroic feat of naval warfare and pivoted the Allies toward victory in the Pacific Theater during WWII.
This rousing, explosive 1961 World War II adventure, based on Alistair MacLean's thrilling novel, turns the war thriller into a deadly caper film. Gregory Peck heads a star-studded cast charged with a near impossible mission: destroy a pair of German guns nestled in a protective cave on the strategic Mediterranean island of Navarone, from where they can control a vital sea passage. As world-famous mountain climber turned British army Captain, Mallory (Peck) leads a guerrilla force composed of the humanitarian explosives expert, Miller (David Niven), the ruthless Greek patriot with a grudge, Stavros (Anthony Quinn), veteran special forces soldier Brown (Stanley Baker) and the cool, quiet young marksman Pappadimos (James Darren). This disparate collection of classic types must overcome internal conflicts, enemy attacks, betrayal and capture to complete their mission. Director J. Lee Thompson sets a driving pace for this exciting (if familiar) military operation, a succession of close calls, pitched battles and last-minute escapes as our heroes infiltrate the garrisoned town with the help of resistance leader Maria (Irene Papas) and plot their entry into the heavily guarded mountain fort. Carl Foreman's screenplay embraces MacLean's role call of clichés and delivers them with style, creating one of the liveliest mixes of espionage, combat and good old-fashioned military derring-do put on film, while Dimitri Tiomkin's score is as sturdy as the rock of Navarone itself. --Sean AxmakerOn the DVD: This special-edition DVD gives the modern-day viewer a taste of what movies were like in 1961. Four curious featurettes are included, produced as publicity for the film. James Darren narrates a little ditty at his honeymoon in Malta during filming; Irene Papas narrates a giddy, old-fashioned look at "Two Girls on the Town". There is even a filmed bit with producer-writer Carl Foreman that was shown once at the premiere. The 30-minute retrospective, "Memories of Navarone", made in 1999 has the expected reminiscences from Gregory Peck and Anthony Quinn. Director J. Lee Thompson's audio commentary is a bit frustrating; he's now in his 80s, and most of his recollections are slow in coming. A historian could have brought out the film's history (it was the most expensive movie ever made at time of release) and produced a more vital viewing. --Doug Thomas
During the Second World War, Britain's women were asked to help out the farming industry by joining The Women's Land Army (The Land Girls). Three city gals make their way to the Lawrence farm in Dorset, and find themselves taking to the work easily enough. The only problem between them is each want young Joe (Steven Mackintosh) for their own reasons. Ag (Anna Friel) is the fiery sort who'll take pleasure where she finds it; Prue (Rachel Wiesz) just wants a lesson in the ways of the world; while Stella (Catherine McCormack) is looking for a way out of the private trap she's set in motion back home, but her feelings are the most sincere of the bunch. The film is Stella's story really (as adapted from the novel by Angela Huth), and has her affecting the on-off decision by Joe to join the RAF, the fight with the government to keep the East Meadow as it is and the paths the two other girls end up taking. Everything is very sweet-natured, especially when played out against a backdrop of rolling green hills, chuffing steam engines and knee-high socks tucked into Wellington boots. There's no comment on the effects of war as such, instead this film is more about the reasons why we make choices in life. --Paul Tonks
Hard hitting and controversial classic BBC drama series, based on real life experiences. Tenko is the powerful story of a disparate group of women whose lives are changed forever when they are taken by the Japanese as prisoners of war after the fall of Singapore in 1941.This twelve disc set contains all thirty episodes from Series One to Three plus the feature length Reunion Special.
A critically acclaimed film that won a total of eight 1970 Academy Awards (including Best Picture) Patton is a riveting portrait of one of the 20th century's greatest military geniuses. One of its Oscars went to George C. Scott for this triumphant portrayal of George Patton the only Allied general truly feared by the Nazis. Charismatic and flamboyant Patton designed his own uniforms sported ivory-handled six-shooters and believed he was a warrior in past lives. He outmaneuv
'Never was so much owed by so many to so few' Winston Churchill, 1940. 303 Squadron is the powerful and true story of No.303 Fighter Squadron, the forgotten legends of the Battle of Britain and their incalculable contribution towards Britain's World War II victory. 303 Squadron is the authentic and historically accurate portrayal of how the Polish pilots of 303 Squadron turned the tide in the most seminal battle of World War II and paved way to victory. At a time when every day could be the last, they didn't hesitate to perform extreme airborne manoeuvres to hit their targets. No-one flew quite like them. Their extraordinary skills and genuine patriotism can be an example for future generations of Poles, of what true heroism is. The film not only tells about the spectacular actions in which they took part in the Battle of Britain, but also shows their private lives: Who they loved, lost and missed. Includes subtitles for the Hard Of Hearing
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
Francis Ford Coppola's 1979 classic tale of the Viet Nam war, re-released with almost an hour of additional footage. Captain Willard (Martin Sheen) is given the task of sailing upriver to find and execute renegade military officer Colonel Kurtz (Marlon Br
A tense engrossing adventure set in the 1942 Libyan war zone in the hot Western Desert. A British ambulance officer (John Mills) escapes the siege in Tobruk and tries desperately to get his passengers to safety in Alexandria where he dreams he will have the luxury of an 'ice cold' glass of beer. His passengers include a stranded hospital nurse a Sergeant-Major and a stray South African Officer trying to return to his unit. Despite saving the group from the Germans something is not quite right about the last passenger. As he begins to undermine the group's stamina using psychological tactics the British officer begins to suspect he might be a German spy...
Based on a true story this shockingly controversial film is an unflinching portrayal of the criminal depravity of Nazi Germany and the ruthless use of sex to destroy opponents. Now presented fully uncut for the first time in UK in high definition showcasing the stunning production design of Ken Adams (designer of most James Bond sets and twice Oscar winner for Barry Lyndon and The Madness Of King George).
Kelly's Heroes reunited Clint Eastwood with his Where Eagles Dare director Brian G Hutton, then added The Dirty Dozen star Telly Savalas in MGM's quest to turn WWII movie celluloid into box office gold three times running. The result, a sprawling adventure about a group of soldiers led by Kelly (Eastwood) on a private mission behind enemy lines to recover a cache of Nazi treasure, echoed its predecessors but wasn't as successful. While Where Eagle's Dare was somewhat tongue in cheek, Kelly's Heroes went for a cynical comic amorality with many plot parallels to 1969's The Italian Job, written by screenwriter Troy Kennedy-Martin the year before. Donald Sutherland, who also starred in the big-screen M*A*S*H (1970), plays a hippie tank commander decades before his time, and it's hard not to see both movies as more commentaries on Vietnam than on the wars in which they were ostensibly set. Though it is intermittently very funny, and despite some expertly staged action, Kelly's Heroes never really convinces as satire or adventure. On the DVD: Kelly's Heroes is presented on disc in a 2.35:1 anamorphic transfer which is immaculate and taken from a virtually perfect master. The images are so clean and sharp they look brand new, outclassing many current theatrical prints. The three-channel sound concentrates most of the action to the centre speaker but does an excellent job of capturing the often turbulent soundtrack. The only real extra is the original trailer, presented anamorphically at 1.77:1.--Gary S Dalkin
Iron Man Lift off with high-speed, high flying action that takes you instide the suit of Marvel's invincible Super Hero for the ultimate Iron Man experience! After surviving an unexpected attack in enemy territory, jet-setting industrialist Tony Stark builds a high-tech suit of armour and vows to protect the world as Iron Man. Straight for the pages of the legendary comic book, Iron Man is a hero who is built - not born- to be unlike any other! Iron Man 2 Robert Downeyn Jr. returns as billionaire Tony Stark in this thrilling sequel to the worldwide blockbuster. Now that his Super Hero secret has been revealed, Tony's life is more intense than ever. Everyone wants in on the Iron Man technology, whether for power or profit...but for Ivan Vanko ( Whiplash ), it's revenge! Tony must once again suit up and face his most dangerous enemy yet, but not without a few new allies of his own. Co-starring Mickey Rourke, Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle and Scarlett Johansson, Iron Man 2 is Even better than the first...it's a complete blast! Iron Man 3 Marvel Studios (Marvel's Avengers Assemble) unleashes the best Iron Man adventure yet with this must own, unprecedented global phenomenon starring Robert Downey Jr. When Tony Stark/Iron Man finds his entire world reduced to rubble, he must use all his ingenuity to survive, destory his enemy and somehow protect those he loves. But a soul-searching question haunts him: Does the man make the suit...or does the suit make the man? Featuring spectacular special effects, Marvel's Iron Man 3 is a wildly entertaining movie you'll watch again and again. Features: Deleted and Extended scenes S.H.I.E.L.D. Data Vault: An In-Depth look at the Marvel Cinematic Universe HD Commentary by Director Jon Favreau & more Marvel One-Shot: Agent Carter Iron Man 3 Unmasked Desconstructing The Scene: Attack on Air Force One Deleted & Extended Scenes Gag Reel Exclusive Behind The Scenes Look - Marvel's Thor: The Dark World Commentary by Shane Black and Drew Pearce
Oliver Stone give us his take on the life of rock star Jim Morrison whose life came tragically to an end in a haze of drug abuse. The movie captures the psychedelic atmosphere of the Doors work and particularly Jim Morrison's life - who is played by a very convincing Val Kilmer.
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