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Gerald Parker "Gerald Parker" (Rouyn-Noranda, QC., Dominion of Canada)
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   

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Transit [Blu-ray]
Transit [Blu-ray]
DVD ~ James Frain, Diora Baird Jim Caviezel
Offered by Warehouse105
Price: CDN$ 17.99
9 used & new from CDN$ 4.90

5.0 out of 5 stars Some Dirty-Dealing down South and Some Mighty Fine Acting Make this Crime-Action-Road Movie Thrilling to Watch!, Dec 22 2014
This review is from: Transit [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
I mostly agree with Cheryl's good, brief review (for Amazon-Canada) of "Transit: This Is Not a Perfect Getaway" (V.V.S. Films 1682 being the DVD edition, rather than the movie on Blu-Ray, which I viewed). However, I would contest her rating (of only 3 stars). This action and road film of crime and abduction is OUTSTANDING! And I am not even a big fan of the action film category, at that. The plot turns upon a vacationing family, among whose auto's car-top baggage, unbeknownst to them, some murderous thieves "plant" their loot from an armoured car which they robbed and who then spend the remainder of the movie, foremost among other things, attempting to recover their stash.

James Frain, especially, and Jim Caviezel are among my favourite actors and they cover themselves in glory in this fast-moving film. I never expected Frain, one of the ruthlessly brutal criminals in this movie, to appear in such a role, having seen him in numerous films in artier genres (as well, of course, as in"The Tudors" televised series). His character is relentless focussed on his family's welfare and his acting, (very appropriately, too) relentlessly convincing. Caviezel not only is persuasive as one very tough, determined, and resourceful father, but he succeeds in characterising the man's total commitment to protecting his nearly estranged wife and their two sons with a love of burning intensity.

No additional indications of details of the storyline from me, either, Cheryl! You are right that such a plot-driven film needs that element of surprise, maybe this one even more of that than usual. "Transit" is more intelligently conceived, too, than many cinematic works of its type, adding to the pleasures that it provides, with no loss in other interest and thrills that this motion picture has abundantly to offer.

The setting is in Louisiana, much of it in bayou swamplands. The provides some very interesting scenery, not to mention some alligators and a snake who have their own bit roles to play in the film. The setting adds immensely to the viewer's fun watching this film.

TRANSIT
TRANSIT
DVD ~ Jim Caviezel
Price: CDN$ 26.54
11 used & new from CDN$ 4.94

5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Crime, Action, Road Film, Eventful and Fast-Moving Even for Its Genre, Dec 21 2014
This review is from: TRANSIT (DVD)
I mostly agree with Cheryl's good, brief review (for Amazon-Canada) of "Transit: This Is Not a Perfect Getaway" (V.V.S. Films 1682 being the DVD edition viewed). However, I would contest her rating (of only 3 stars). This action and road film of crime and abduction is OUTSTANDING! And I am not even a big fan of the action film category, at that. The plot turns upon a vacationing family, among whose auto's car-top baggage, unbeknownst to them, some murderous thieves "plant" their loot from an armoured car which they robbed and who then spend the remainder of the movie, foremost among other things, attempting to recover their stash.

James Frain, especially, and Jim Caviezel are among my favourite actors and they cover themselves in glory in this fast-moving film. I never expected Frain, one of the ruthlessly brutal criminals in this movie, to appear in such a role, having seen him in numerous films in artier genres (as well, of course, as in"The Tudors" televised series). His character is relentless focussed on his family's welfare and his acting, (very appropriately, too) relentlessly convincing. Caviezel not only is persuasive as one very tough, determined, and resourceful father, but he succeeds in characterising the man's total commitment to protecting his nearly estranged wife and their two sons with a love of burning intensity.

No additional indications of details of the story-line from me, either, Cheryl! You are right that such a plot-driven film needs that element of surprise, maybe this one even more of that than usual. "Transit" is more intelligently conceived, too, than many cinematic works of its type, adding to the pleasures that it provides, with no loss in other interest and thrills that this motion picture has abundantly to offer.

The setting is in Louisiana, much of it in bayou swamplands. The provides some very interesting scenery, not to mention some alligators and a snake who have their own bit roles to play in the film. The setting adds immensely to the viewer's fun watching this film.

Idol, The  / L'idole (Bilingual)
Idol, The / L'idole (Bilingual)
Price: CDN$ 9.93

4.0 out of 5 stars She Is Desperate to Succeed, She's an "Easy Lay" but Only if the Man Is Good-Looking, & She Affects Most Guys Who Cross Her Path, Dec 21 2014
A young Australian actress, Sarah, plying her art with limited success in France, and an old Chinese man, Mr. Zao (whom James Hong depicts), who helps her with kindnesses, especially by cooking such delicious meals for her that her depression over her professional frustrations lessens somewhat, are the the two main characters in this quiet movie, along with her seductively handsome illicit lover, Phillippe. There is more display of exquisite sensibility than of outright action, which may cause this film to bore many viewers, but which entrances those who attune to its aesthetic to follow the fate of these characters with some intensity of interest in them.

Sarah lets her envy, over the actress playing the role for which she is an understudy, overwhelm her very interest in life itself. Being so young and exceedingly beautiful, as Leelee Sobieski portrays Sarah, she is, of course, foolish to be so impatient to attain succes. She even sets an hex upon her actress rival which leads, as Sarah perceives things, to a terrible result.

Zao, in the meantime, is becoming ever more drawn to Sarah's beauty, despite that the wisdom of his aged years knows how futile it is to long for her. In fact, numerous men, alike young (Philippe, played by the very handsome Algerian-French actor Jalil Lespert) and old who include, besides Mr. Zao, also Roger, a lacivious, rather disgusting, stout man in later middle age (acted by Jean-Paul Rousillon), whose interest in her is purely and grossly carnal. As for Philippe, his own attraction to Sarah amounts mostly to a more youthful dose of lust, less off-putting because of this fornicating young married man's good looks in superb prime of life, but that, nonetheless, amounts to the same sordid interest in Sarah that Roger more distastefully displays!

A young lass, Caroline (her part taken by Marie Loboda), on the other hand, has developed a school-girl crush on Zao. This gives rise to some mischief done to the other protagonists in the drama.

The interactions of these various characters lead to some often ironic consequences. To go here into the details of all that would be to deprive any future viewer the pleasure of seeing for himself how all of this works out.

The movie, as mentioned, proceeds tranquilly, and, literally speaking, some of that is due to the sonically flat soundscape of the film when the viewer is not hearing any accompanying music in the background. When Gabriel Yared's quite lovely and charming music does occur now and then, the prevailing absence of it elsewhere makes its sudden presence intrude, albeit to agreeable effect, when the hearer becomes, inevitably and unavoidably, suddenly altogether too aware of it. The music, probably inadvertently, fits into the action more as incidental music in a play would occur prominently to what is on stage in the theatre, rather than in the way that music, when skillfully employed in a motion picture, enhances a well-made cinematic work's overall sound world (i.e., less intrusively than in the theatre, although, certaintly, the pleasure that incidental music affords in a staging offers its own more appropriately prominent delights). That, and the lighting, too, in "L'Idole" ("The Idol") convey decidedly more, due to such factors, what one finds in a decently executed conceived-for-video or made-for-television production.

The English subtitles of "L'Idole", included in the French movie's DVD edition viewed (Seville Pictures 23145-DY), are easy to follow, since the action unfolds at such a leisurely pace. At least for Seville's DVD edition, setting the DVD screen image aspect ratio at 4:3 gives better results than a more theatrical display ratio does, certainly enhancing the visual appeal of the actors taking the roles of Sarah, Philippe, and Zao among the movie's cast. In its own artistic, quietly understated way, this motion picture offers real pleasure for viewing at home as well as in the cinema house.

L'Idole
L'Idole
Offered by Prestivo3
Price: CDN$ 43.23

4.0 out of 5 stars Sarah Craves an Important Career on the Stage and the Film's Men Desire Ardently To Have Her Buck-Naked on the Bed Sheets, Dec 20 2014
This review is from: L'Idole (DVD)
A young Australian actress, Sarah, plying her art with limited success in France, and an old Chinese man, Mr. Zao (whom James Hong depicts), who helps her with kindnesses, especially by cooking such delicious meals for her that her depression over her professional frustrations lessens somewhat, are the the two main characters in this quiet movie, along with her seductively handsome illicit lover, Phillippe. There is more display of exquisite sensibility than of outright action, which may cause this film to bore many viewers, but which entrances those who attune to its aesthetic to follow the fate of these characters with some intensity of interest in them.

Sarah lets her envy, over the actress playing the role for which she is an understudy, overwhelm her very interest in life itself. Being so young and exceedingly beautiful, as Leelee Sobieski portrays Sarah, she is, of course, foolish to be so impatient to succeed. She even sets an hex upon her actress rival which leads, as Sarah perceives things, to a terrible result.

Zao, in the meantime, is becoming ever more drawn to Sarah's beauty, despite that the wisdom of his aged years knows how futile it is to long for her. In fact, numerous men, alike young (Philippe, played by the very handsome Algerian-French actor Jalil Lespert) and old who include, besides Mr. Zao, also Roger, a lacivious, rather disgusting, stout man in later middle age (acted by Jean-Paul Rousillon), whose interest in her is purely and grossly carnal. As for Philippe, his own attraction to Sarah amounts mostly to a more youthful dose of lust, less off-putting because of this fornicating young married man's good looks in superb prime of life, but that, nonetheless, amounts to the same sordid interest in Sarah that Roger more distastefully displays!

A young lass, Caroline (her part taken by Marie Loboda), on the other hand, has developed a school-girl crush on Zao. This gives rise to some mischief done to the other protagonists in the drama.

The interactions of these various characters lead to some often ironic consequences. To go here into the details of all that would be to deprive any future viewer the pleasure of seeing for himself how all of this works out.

The movie, as mentioned, proceeds tranquilly, and, literally speaking, some of that is due to the sonically flat soundscape of the film when the viewer is not hearing any accompanying music in the background. When Gabriel Yared's quite lovely and charming music does occur now and then, the prevailing absence of it elsewhere makes its sudden presence intrude, albeit to agreeable effect, when the hearer becomes, inevitably and unavoidably, suddenly altogether too aware of it. The music, probably inadvertently, fits into the action more as incidental music in a play would occur prominently to what is on stage in the theatre, rather than in the way that music, when skillfully employed in a motion picture, enhances a well-made cinematic work's overall sound world (i.e., less intrusively than in the theatre, although, certaintly, the pleasure that incidental music affords in a staging offers its own more appropriately prominent delights). That, and the lighting, too, in "L'Idole" ("The Idol") convey decidedly more, due to such factors, what one finds in a decently executed conceived-for-video or made-for-television production.

The English subtitles of "L'Idole", included in the French movie's DVD edition viewed (Seville Pictures 23145-DY), are easy to follow, since the action unfolds at such a leisurely pace. At least for Seville's DVD edition, setting the DVD screen image aspect ratio at 4:3 gives better results than a more theatrical display ratio does, certainly enhancing the visual appeal of the actors taking the roles of Sarah, Philippe, and Zao among the movie's cast. In its own artistic, quietly understated way, this motion picture offers real pleasure for viewing at home as well as in the cinema house.

The Idol / L'idole
The Idol / L'idole
DVD ~ Leelee Sobieski
2 used & new from CDN$ 19.99

4.0 out of 5 stars This Absorbing but Slowly Paced Movie Is about Sarah's Stage Ambitions & the Efforts of Various Men To Enjoy Her Sexual Favours, Dec 20 2014
This review is from: The Idol / L'idole (DVD)
A young Australian actress, Sarah, plying her art with limited success in France, and an old Chinese man, Mr. Zao (whom James Hong depicts), who helps her with kindnesses, especially by cooking such delicious meals for her that her depression over her professional frustrations lessens somewhat, are the the two main characters in this quiet movie, along with her seductively handsome illicit lover, Phillippe. There is more display of exquisite sensibility than of outright action, which may cause this film to bore many viewers, but which entrances those who attune to its aesthetic to follow the fate of these characters with some intensity of interest in them.

Sarah lets her envy, over the actress playing the role for which she is an understudy, overwhelm her very interest in life itself. Being so young and exceedingly beautiful, as Leelee Sobieski portrays Sarah, she is, of course, foolish to be so impatient to succeed. She even sets an hex upon her actress rival which leads, as Sarah perceives things, to a terrible result.

Zao, in the meantime, is becoming ever more drawn to Sarah's beauty, despite that the wisdom of his aged years knows how futile it is to long for her. In fact, numerous men, alike young (Philippe, played by the very handsome Algerian-French actor Jalil Lespert) and old who include, besides Mr. Zao, also Roger, a lacivious, rather disgusting, stout man in later middle age (acted by Jean-Paul Rousillon), whose interest in her is purely and grossly carnal. As for Philippe, his own attraction to Sarah amounts mostly to a more youthful dose of lust, less off-putting because of this fornicating young married man's good looks in superb prime of life, but that, nonetheless, amounts to the same sordid interest in Sarah that Roger more distastefully displays!

A young lass, Caroline (her part taken by Marie Loboda), on the other hand, has developed a school-girl crush on Zao. This gives rise to some mischief done to the other protagonists in the drama.

The interactions of these various characters lead to some often ironic consequences. To go here into the details of all that would be to deprive any future viewer the pleasure of seeing for himself how all of this works out.

The movie, as mentioned, proceeds tranquilly, and, literally speaking, some of that is due to the sonically flat soundscape of the film when the viewer is not hearing any accompanying music in the background. When Gabriel Yared's quite lovely and charming music does occur now and then, the prevailing absence of it elsewhere makes its sudden presence intrude, albeit to agreeable effect, when the hearer becomes, inevitably and unavoidably, suddenly altogether too aware of it. The music, probably inadvertently, fits into the action more as incidental music in a play would occur prominently to what is on stage in the theatre, rather than in the way that music, when skillfully employed in a motion picture, enhances a well-made cinematic work's overall sound world (i.e., less intrusively than in the theatre, although, certaintly, the pleasure that incidental music affords in a staging offers its own more appropriately prominent delights). That, and the lighting, too, in "L'Idole" ("The Idol") convey decidedly more, due to such factors, what one finds in a decently executed conceived-for-video or made-for-television production.

The English subtitles of "L'Idole", included in the French movie's DVD edition viewed (Seville Pictures 23145-DY), are easy to follow, since the action unfolds at such a leisurely pace. At least for Seville's DVD edition, setting the DVD screen image aspect ratio at 4:3 gives better results than a more theatrical display ratio does, certainly enhancing the visual appeal of the actors taking the roles of Sarah, Philippe, and Zao among the movie's cast. In its own artistic, quietly understated way, this motion picture offers real pleasure for viewing at home as well as in the cinema house.

La fièvre Du Samedi Soir - Saturday Night Fever (1977) / Staying Alive (1983) 2 FILMS (English/French)
La fièvre Du Samedi Soir - Saturday Night Fever (1977) / Staying Alive (1983) 2 FILMS (English/French)
DVD ~ John Travolta
Offered by boutiquecinemaniac,com
Price: CDN$ 39.95

4.0 out of 5 stars Staying a-Thriving on Superb Music, Dance, and on Travolta's Great Looks, Is What This Double Bill Can Do for Viewers!, Dec 9 2014
I finally have gotten around, now in late 2014 at 71 years of age, to watching these two motion pictures! I should not have taken so seriously the miles-laid-thick snobbery about these two films, especially regarding "Saturday Night Fever" (S.N.F.), and all the additional snubbing of disco music and of disco dancing. On their own terms, these two films are terrifically entertaining. The dancing remains wonderful; seen now, the disco dancing in S.N.F. often looks remarkably elegant, even (oddly enough) rather genteel, and certainly necessitates much Terpsichorean ballroom-like skill. Atop that, "Saturday Night Fever" has a storyline full of grit and warm human interest, quite apart from the superb scenes on the dance-floor. Of course, most Amazon users will know already that "Staying Alive" is the sequel to S.N.F.

In the earlier film, Tony Manero, John Travolta's character, is 19 years old, the teen disco king of his neighbourhood in Brooklyn, N.Y. Travolta, already a star on T.V., especially, for the youth market, does S.N.F.'s disco-style dancing exceedingly well and is quite accomplished as an actor. He interacts with Tony Manero's male pals and with the women in S.N.F. like a truly seasoned actor.

In "Staying Alive", Tony Manero has become an aspiring professional dancer, now aged 25, for Broadway and modern dance. The storyline for "Staying Alive" does not have the convincing plot and characterisation that capture the viewer's heart to anywhere near the extent that S.N.F. did so, and, in fact, "Staying Alive" is rather stiff and lacking in credibility in many ways, but the dancing in Broadway and modern dance idioms in that film is exceptionally good.

Best of all in "Staying Alive" is the modern dance ballet sequence, "Satan's Alley". It is a quite vivid, an utterly decadent, and a S&M-infused bit of deviltry, sulfurously erotic. Some have written that "Satan's Alley" is "way over the top", but, actually, it is brilliantly choreographed and shows Travolta's brilliant dancing skills for all that they are worth (which is to say, a lot!); the only (relatively slight) flaw is the resort excessively often to too much slow-motion camera work. "Satan's Alley", in fact, is what makes "Staying Alive" really worth continued viewing. Of course, John Travolta is, if anything, even more achingly vivid, physically, his bare flesh (getting down to loincloth-only as his costume sheds) which is on close-to-complete display of his superlative body in much of "Satan's Alley". At this point in his life and movie career, Travolta was alike "studly" of body and even more incineratingly macho of good looks (including his fine face's still youthful beauty) than he had been so already in S.N.F.

Don't wait so long, folks, as I did to view these two movies, so conveniently coupled on this double-DVD product, the two films within a single container (Paramount Home Entertainment 13096 being the North American edition viewed, in widescreen display). The bonus features, of a strongly retrospective nature, on the disc for S.N.F. are excellent and varied; as for "Staying Alive", the disc devoted to that move has no such extra features.

Saturday Night Fever (1977) / Staying Alive (1983) (Double Feature)
Saturday Night Fever (1977) / Staying Alive (1983) (Double Feature)
DVD ~ John Travolta
Offered by thebookcommunity_ca
Price: CDN$ 38.44
9 used & new from CDN$ 24.69

4.0 out of 5 stars Forget the Snobbery about Disco Music and These Stunning Films of the Art of Ballroom and Showcase Modern Dance, Just Watch Them, Dec 9 2014
I finally have gotten around, now in late 2014 at 71 years of age, to watching these two motion pictures! I should not have taken so seriously the miles-laid-thick snobbery about these two films, especially regarding "Saturday Night Fever" (S.N.F.), and all the additional snubbing of disco music and of disco dancing. On their own terms, these two films are terrifically entertaining. The dancing remains wonderful; seen now, the disco dancing in S.N.F. often looks remarkably elegant, even (oddly enough) rather genteel, and certainly necessitates much Terpsichorean ballroom-like skill. Atop that, "Saturday Night Fever" has a storyline full of grit and warm human interest, quite apart from the superb scenes on the dance-floor. Of course, most Amazon users will know already that "Staying Alive" is the sequel to S.N.F.

In the earlier film, Tony Manero, John Travolta's character, is 19 years old, the teen disco king of his neighbourhood in Brooklyn, N.Y. Travolta, already a star on T.V., especially, for the youth market, does S.N.F.'s disco-style dancing exceedingly well and is quite accomplished as an actor. He interacts with Tony Manero's male pals and with the women in S.N.F. like a truly seasoned actor.

In "Staying Alive", Tony Manero has become an aspiring professional dancer, now aged 25, for Broadway and modern dance. The storyline for "Staying Alive" does not have the convincing plot and characterisation that capture the viewer's heart to anywhere near the extent that S.N.F. did so, and, in fact, "Staying Alive" is rather stiff and lacking in credibility in many ways, but the dancing in Broadway and modern dance idioms in that film is exceptionally good.

Best of all in "Staying Alive" is the modern dance ballet sequence, "Satan's Alley". It is a quite vivid, an utterly decadent, and a S&M-infused bit of deviltry, sulfurously erotic. Some have written that "Satan's Alley" is "way over the top", but, actually, it is brilliantly choreographed and shows Travolta's brilliant dancing skills for all that they are worth (which is to say, a lot!); the only (relatively slight) flaw is the resort excessively often to too much slow-motion camera work. "Satan's Alley", in fact, is what makes "Staying Alive" really worth continued viewing. Of course, John Travolta is, if anything, even more achingly vivid, physically, his bare flesh (getting down to loincloth-only as his costume sheds) which is on close-to-complete display of his superlative body in much of "Satan's Alley". At this point in his life and movie career, Travolta was alike "studly" of body and even more incineratingly macho of good looks (including his fine face's still youthful beauty) than he had been so already in S.N.F.

Don't wait so long, folks, as I did to view these two movies, so conveniently coupled on this double-DVD product, the two films within a single container (Paramount Home Entertainment 13096 being the North American edition viewed, in widescreen display). The bonus features, of a strongly retrospective nature, on the disc for S.N.F. are excellent and varied; as for "Staying Alive", the disc devoted to that move has no such extra features.

Saturday Night Fever/Staying Alive
Saturday Night Fever/Staying Alive
DVD ~ DVD
Offered by MochaDVD
Price: CDN$ 17.99
3 used & new from CDN$ 10.95

4.0 out of 5 stars The Great Disco Film of 1977 and Its 1983 Sequel Together on Two Discs packaged Together in a Single Container, Dec 8 2014
I finally have gotten around, now in late 2014 at 71 years of age, to watching these two motion pictures! I should not have taken so seriously the miles-laid-thick snobbery about these two films, especially regarding "Saturday Night Fever" (S.N.F.), and all the additional snubbing of disco music and of disco dancing. On their own terms, these two films are terrifically entertaining. The dancing remains wonderful; seen now, the disco dancing in S.N.F. often looks remarkably elegant, even (oddly enough) rather genteel, and certainly necessitates much Terpsichorean ballroom-like skill. Atop that, "Saturday Night Fever" has a storyline full of grit and warm human interest, quite apart from the superb scenes on the dance-floor. Of course, most Amazon users will know already that "Staying Alive" is the sequel to S.N.F.

In the earlier film, Tony Manero, John Travolta's character, is 19 years old, the teen disco king of his neighbourhood in Brooklyn, N.Y. Travolta, already a star on T.V., especially, for the youth market, does S.N.F.'s disco-style dancing exceedingly well and is quite accomplished as an actor. He interacts with Tony Manero's male pals and with the women in S.N.F. like a truly seasoned actor.

In "Staying Alive", Tony Manero has become an aspiring professional dancer, now aged 25, for Broadway and modern dance. The storyline for "Staying Alive" does not have the convincing plot and characterisation that capture the viewer's heart to anywhere near the extent that S.N.F. did so, and, in fact, "Staying Alive" is rather stiff and lacking in credibility in many ways, but the dancing in Broadway and modern dance idioms in that film is exceptionally good.

Best of all in "Staying Alive" is the modern dance ballet sequence, "Satan's Alley". It is a quite vivid, an utterly decadent, and a S&M-infused bit of deviltry, sulfurously erotic. Some have written that "Satan's Alley" is "way over the top", but, actually, it is brilliantly choreographed and shows Travolta's brilliant dancing skills for all that they are worth (which is to say, a lot!); the only (relatively slight) flaw is the resort excessively often to too much slow-motion camera work. "Satan's Alley", in fact, is what makes "Staying Alive" really worth continued viewing. Of course, John Travolta is, if anything, even more achingly vivid, physically, his bare flesh (getting down to loincloth-only as his costume sheds) which is on close-to-complete display of his superlative body in much of "Satan's Alley". At this point in his life and movie career, Travolta was alike "studly" of body and even more incineratingly macho of good looks (including his fine face's still youthful beauty) than he had been so already in S.N.F.

Don't wait so long, folks, as I did to view these two movies, so conveniently coupled on this double-DVD product, the two films within a single container (Paramount Home Entertainment 13096 being the North American edition viewed, in widescreen display). The bonus features, of a strongly retrospective nature, on the disc for S.N.F. are excellent and varied; as for "Staying Alive", the disc devoted to that move has no such extra features.

Last Days on Mars [Import]
Last Days on Mars [Import]
Offered by importcds__
Price: CDN$ 8.75
16 used & new from CDN$ 8.75

3.0 out of 5 stars Alien Zombies, as It Were, Here for Your Enjoyment, but to the Mortal Detriment of a Space Crew!, Oct. 31 2014
This review is from: Last Days on Mars [Import] (DVD)
Despite the many negative reviews of this film, which certainly is no masterpiece, but makes for good viewing, "The Last Days on Mars" is worth a try for those who enjoy sci-fi cinema. Certainly, if they can bear pleasurably with "Red Planet" (2000), they can find "Last Days on Mars" to be at least as enjoyable. Yes, the alien creatures which the earthlings discover (after having found microbial and other lower life forms) are zombie-like Martians and, yes, they do turn their human victims into zombie-like critters when they die and then come back to life as zomboid anthropoids, also with terrific blood-lust, and with the ability to breathe the Martian atmosphere. However, there is much suspense and gripping action to all of this, the ending of it bleak and grim for the space crew. For more clues to the film's action, see the other reviews, especially on the Internet Movie Data Base and on Amazon-U.S.

I would suggest renting rather than buying this on DVD or on Blu-Ray, but, for my own part, anyway, I think that I shall be watching it again sometime in the future. In essence, "The Last Days on Mars" and "Red Planet" both are rather old-style (1950s-like) sci-fi, so far as their respective plots go, but the two movies have a modern look to them, the sets being anything but hokey. Mars itself looks, in the film's setting, rather like some reddish stretch of Utah's Painted Desert. These two films are not reversions, from the visual standpoint, to "Buck Rogers" and "Flash Gordon" style films of the mid-20th century (which, anyway, will remain belovèd for the sake of their exuberant and boyishly handsome leading actor, Buster Crabbe, of cinematically blessèd memory). For that matter, adding it all up, "Last Days on Mars" is a lot more vigourously worthwhile example of this type of sci-fi movie than such a motion picture, similarly of Martians' sabotage of human visitors, as "Red Planet" (which stars Val Kilmer) these two films alike happen to be.

Since the space crew is portrayed as international, it is not surprising that there is a variety of accents, of Brits, Canadians, and of others whose first language is not English. This can make it difficult at times to understand much of the dialogue and, alas, there are no subtitles on the North American DVD edition viewed (M.O. 1 Pictures DVD-5230), one that is distributed here in Québec, to aid comprehension. Other North American editions, however, do have subtitles. However, I would say that this film is worth the time spent viewing it, despite the cavils. Judging "The Last Days on Mars" upon its own terms, rather than from the bias of some pre-existing sci-fi aesthetic, this motion picture really is rather good stuff. At least, it is good enough to take one's time enjoyably to view it.

The Last Days on Mars / Les Derniers jours sur Mars [Blu-ray] (Bilingual)
The Last Days on Mars / Les Derniers jours sur Mars [Blu-ray] (Bilingual)
DVD ~ Liev Schreiber
Price: CDN$ 12.49
7 used & new from CDN$ 10.99

3.0 out of 5 stars This Sci-Fi Movie Is Better than Critics Would Have One To Believe It Is, Despite All Those "Space-Zombies" in It!, Oct. 30 2014
Despite the many negative reviews of this film, which certainly is no masterpiece, but makes for good viewing, "The Last Days on Mars" is worth a try for those who enjoy sci-fi cinema. Certainly, if they can bear pleasurably with "Red Planet" (2000), they can find "Last Days on Mars" to be at least as enjoyable. Yes, the alien creatures which the earthlings discover (after having found microbial and other lower life forms) are zombie-like Martians and, yes, they do turn their human victims into zombie-like critters when they die and then come back to life as zomboid anthropoids, also with terrific blood-lust, and with the ability to breathe the Martian atmosphere. However, there is much suspense and gripping action to all of this, the ending of it bleak and grim for the space crew. For more clues to the film's action, see the other reviews, especially on the Internet Movie Data Base and on Amazon-U.S.

I would suggest renting rather than buying this on DVD or on Blu-Ray, but, for my own part, anyway, I think that I shall be watching it again sometime in the future. In essence, "The Last Days on Mars" and "Red Planet" both are rather old-style (1950s-like) sci-fi, so far as their respective plots go, but the two movies have a modern look to them, the sets being anything but hokey. Mars itself looks, in the film's setting, rather like some reddish stretch of Utah's Painted Desert. These two films are not reversions, from the visual standpoint, to "Buck Rogers" and "Flash Gordon" style films of the mid-20th century (which, anyway, will remain belovèd for the sake of their exuberant and boyishly handsome leading actor, Buster Crabbe, of cinematically blessèd memory). For that matter, adding it all up, "Last Days on Mars" is a lot more vigourously worthwhile example of this type of sci-fi movie than such a motion picture, similarly of Martians' sabotage of human visitors, as "Red Planet" (which stars Val Kilmer) these two films alike happen to be.

Since the space crew is portrayed as international, it is not surprising that there is a variety of accents, of Brits, Canadians, and of others whose first language is not English. This can make it difficult at times to understand much of the dialogue and, alas, there are no subtitles on the North American DVD edition (rather than Blu-Ray) viewed (M.O. 1 Pictures DVD-5230), one that is distributed here in Québec, to aid comprehension. Other North American editions, however, do have subtitles. I would say that this film is worth the time spent viewing it, despite the cavils. Judging "The Last Days on Mars" upon its own terms, rather than from the bias of some pre-existing sci-fi aesthetic, this motion picture really is rather good stuff. At least, it is good enough to take one's time enjoyably to view it.

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