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Friends: The Complete Fifth Season (4 Discs)
Friends: The Complete Fifth Season (4 Discs)
DVD ~ Jennifer Aniston
Offered by OMydeals
Price: CDN$ 122.78
9 used & new from CDN$ 10.95

5.0 out of 5 stars Friends' Peak, April 23 2004
Probably, the greatest Friends' season. The first episodes, just when they get back from England, are Gloriously Hilarious. Chandler and Monica hiding their relationship from the rest is truly one of the best moments in all the friends series.
Also, there aren't any excerpts from other seasons, which is great too. There is one new "flashback" which is OK too.
I've read that watching "Friends" helps reducing stress. I Agree!! This series and especially this season is amazing.
Get it... with the rest....

1990 Rome Concert
1990 Rome Concert
Price: CDN$ 16.99
115 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Not for opera Snobs, but for the rest of us!, April 22 2004
This review is from: 1990 Rome Concert (Audio CD)
For most opera "snobs" the three tenors have committed the ultimate sin: singing "popular songs" outside the opera house.
For the rest of opera lovers, this CD is a miracle. It's not a coincidence that it has been sold over 15 million copies. This CD is, to my taste, the best of all the Three tenors performances. The arias are chosen from the most loved opera repertoire. As for the following "pot pourri" it is just gorgeous. I'm a "Three Tenors disciple" as it is after hearing this CD that my passion for opera started, as I guess for many other people. Now that I am much more into "real opera" I cannot but find this CD compilation exquisite. Hearing three great tenors fly into the high notes all at one gives goose bumps.
As for the other "opera fanatics", those whose ears are so sensible that they'll have an allergy if someone other than Caruso, Gigli, Corelli or Bjorling is singing, I guess they still have much to learn. They have to learn to appreciate what GREAT "contemporary" (not so much any more, but say for the last quarter of the 20th) opera tenors have to offer.
This is A MUST, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED CD.

Otello-Giuseppe Verdi & Placid
Otello-Giuseppe Verdi & Placid
DVD ~ Plácido Domingo
Price: CDN$ 24.99
32 used & new from CDN$ 14.28

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Domingo or Domingo?, April 16 2004
This DVD is a new release of a video Otello starring Placido Domingo in the title role. On DVD, there are already at least 3 of his Otellos, but this one surpasses them all.
Domingo is outstanding, a bit better than in the Covent Garden production. He is in great voice, singing and acting magnificiently. There are some few strained passages ("vil cortigiana", "venere splende") but somehow they come out exciting as well.
Morris and Fleming are of equal greatness. Morris has played an evil, manipulant Iago in his voice, and Fleming as Desdemona is the best I have ever heard.
Levine as conductor is great as well. His job must have been "easier" with this incredible cast.
The overall "movie impression" is worth of a great Hollywood piece of art. Not only is the singing outstanding but the acting of all the cast is incredible. I have never seen that before in any other opera DVD. When Otello slaps Desdemona you would actually jump of your seat as I've never seen such a realistic scene. Otello's fainting in the 3d act couldn't be more realistic. This list is long and encompasses the "Esultate", the act1 love scene, "Ora e per sempre"....and all the great ones.
At the end of the performance, you couldn't but join your screaming and cheers to those of the Met crowd.
Finally, a lot still argue about Domingo in the title role, and compare him to Vickers and Del Monaco. While everyone has his own opinion on the subject, let's be objective for a second:
Del Monaco's DVD in black and White with lips problem cannot compare to this good DVD production. Vicker's with Karajan has cuts, awful overall acting, and again lips problem, even though performance is amazing.
This is the BEST AVAILABLE OTELLO DVD (to date, I have said that same sentence when reviewing Covent Garden's.)
I highly Recommend it!

Verdi;Giuseppe Otello
Verdi;Giuseppe Otello
DVD ~ Plácido Domingo

4.0 out of 5 stars His Majesty: Placido Domingo, March 24 2004
This review is from: Verdi;Giuseppe Otello (DVD)
This could be Domingo's last Otello, and for that alone, it is worth to have.
Is is better than previous ones? (i.e. Solti's at Covent Garden), well No and definitely not and this for many reasons.
This Otello has been recorded at la Scala in December 2001. To start, La Scala's directions falls far behind Covent Garden's in every aspect. The sets are monotoneous and really boring.
Frittoli's desdemona can't really be compared to Te Kanawa's. Frittoli is really an excellent actress, and also has a nice voice but it just couldn't fit well in here. It is said that her Desdemona at the Met was a success, but it wasn't as good in here.
Nucci's Iago is very nice. He sings like a true Verdian, getting away from all the vulgarity most Iagos follow. With age, he got a darker and darker voice which he uses nicely in this production.
Muti's Otello is one of the most exciting I have ever heard.
And now Domingo, with what has been said his last Otello (at 60 years old). Is he better than he was in Covent Garden about 10 years ago, well definitely not. He sings very quickly at high notes and tries to go slowly most of the time. Is this because of the age, well probably not. It just turned out that during these La Scala performances, he just wasn't at his best. At one performance he had to stop after Ora e per Sempre and excused himself to the audiance, and then had to cancel another performance. Despite all that, his rendition of Otello here is MAJESTIC. He owns the stage. Every "move" is exciting, and despite a rather hard 2nd act, he delivers extremely beautiful 3d and 4th act. His "Niun me Tema" is one of the most beautiful and most sincere in record.
To sum up, if you ever need an Otello on DVD, I would first recommend Domingo at Covent Garden and then at La Scala. Vicker's movie with Karajan has horrible syncro and acting, but very nice musically and some cuts.

Schindler's List (Widescreen) (Bilingual)
Schindler's List (Widescreen) (Bilingual)
DVD ~ Liam Neeson
Offered by marvelio-ca
Price: CDN$ 15.11
20 used & new from CDN$ 9.27

5.0 out of 5 stars Masterpiece, March 5 2004
Schindler's list is a masterpice. Filmed in black and white, it delivers incredible authenticity to the story, but most of all intensity. And whenever the director wants you to particularly focus on a "movement" he would add some colors and depicts the dramatics instants to the fullest (the little girl in red jacket and the candle).
The story of Oskar Schindler depicted in this movie (whether 100% correct or not, who cares) is breathtaking. He's a man aspiring for power and money, or at least that's what he thought he wants. Scene after scene, oskar schindler will turn to the man who saved the life of more than a 1000 human lives from Nazi's forces.
This movie is fulled with little details, and you'll enjoy discovering them one after the other especially that almost everyone will watch this movie more than once.

Otello (Sl)
Otello (Sl)
Price: CDN$ 20.28
17 used & new from CDN$ 12.27

3.0 out of 5 stars Not the best..., Feb. 26 2004
This review is from: Otello (Sl) (Audio CD)
I was kind of disappointed with this recording. I expected a "gripping" LIVE performance, but what I got is DelMonaco in one of his "theatrical" otello's... There was too much sobbing and crying from his side which I don't particularly like. Gobbi used his evil rather than musical voice in his performance of Iago.
Erede's tempo is FAST, and I mean real fast which is very exciting in a performance of Otello, but perhaps too much here. The Opera lasts for 2 hours including some of the public cheers.
The recording's sound is not good, but you might expect that from a live recording of the late 50s (especially that it's mastered by Opera d'Oro).
This is However, one of the few DelMonaco's live Otello's available and for that alone it's worth having (it's also very cheep so...)
To sum up, this is an exciting fast Otello with some of the best performers of the roles ever. There is too much "bad acting" in the voices so beware. Otherwise worth to have. (Let it not be your first Otello though. For that go for Domingo-Levine, Domingo-Chung, Vickers-Serafin or DelMonaco-Karajan)

Placido Domingo:Turandot
Placido Domingo:Turandot
DVD ~ James Levine
Offered by Rarewaves-CA
Price: CDN$ 14.24
30 used & new from CDN$ 10.93

5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect performance and DVD, Aug. 8 2003
This review is from: Placido Domingo:Turandot (DVD)
This is one of the best opera DVD's I have ever seen. You could not ask for more. It was recorded during one of those MET nights where everything goes perfect.
The title role is held perfectly by Marton. She isn't a great opera actress, but she IS a great soprano, and for Turandot that's enough.
As for Domingo's warm voice, it has rarely been more enchanting. For him, everything went perfect that night. Calaf's role suits him perfectly in both acting and singing. You could see him suffering during high C's, but this is even more thrilling especially since they come out perfectly.
Mitchell's Liu adds the cherry to the perfect Cake, while Levine's traditional conducting is amazing.
Zeffirelli's sets alone would have made a good reason why to buy this DVD. Acts I and II are majestuous.
Finally, the DVD's digital sound and image quality are outstanding. In summary, everything is Perfect!
Highly Recommended.

Otello (Widescreen) [Import]
Otello (Widescreen) [Import]
DVD ~ Plácido Domingo
Offered by thebookcommunity_ca
Price: CDN$ 47.87
13 used & new from CDN$ 22.69

2.0 out of 5 stars Great or Horrible?, April 8 2003
This review is from: Otello (Widescreen) [Import] (DVD)
Well, to start, I am huge fan of Otello, Domingo and Zeffirelli. But somehow I was disappointed (sometimes a lot!) with this movie.
Before I bought the DVD I had read some reviews, and most reviewers were chocked by the cuts in the score and I always thought: big deal. But when I watched it I understood: THERE IS ABOUT 25 min OF CUTS!!! Most of Otellos (Levine's, Karajan's, Toscanini's) are about 2h15. This one is 1h55 with over 10 min of music and ballet that Verdi never wrote (You do the math, and remember that Maazel's tempi are much slower than Toscanini's). Also, not only are these cuts of arias or ensembles, but even worse: Phrases are just cut off here and there throughout the Opera. The 1000 words allowed for the review won't be enough to enumerate them. Why??? A reviewer argued that it's to enhance the drama!! Come on, are you going to convince me that the finale of Act II (Si, pel Ciel) needs enhancement. Even this part is cut, and worse it's "Cut IN HALF AND I MEAN IN HALF" as another reviewer pointed.
So what does go right?
Well the scenary is amazing and I mean amazing. But what about the performance (this is Opera after all). Well again much can be said. Domingo once said that his performance was very much influenced by Zeffirelli. He wanted him to go into some deep barytonal voice (à la Ramon Vinay of you will), and the performance suffers.
Maazel conducting is far from being ideal. Should he be blamed? Well yes, like most of the singers who agreed to represent Zeffirelli's Otello and not Verdi's.
Finally, one of the reviewer said that Zeffirelli tried to "adapt" the opera and those who dislike is are not open-minded. Oh Please! When you buy Verdi's Otello, you are expecting to hear some of the most beautiful music ever written adapted to one of the most successfull libretto and won't expect the director to cut off about 25 min of the score.
It is normal to be disappointed. With a cast like this one and a director like Zeffirelli (his Traviata, Cav. Rusticana, and Traviata are awesome) we could have had the most successful opera movie Ever....
Finally, I need to point out that one who doesn't know Otello "as is" could be thrilled with this version. It is after all a real beautiful movie.

2002 To 2003 Penguin Guide To Compact Discs
2002 To 2003 Penguin Guide To Compact Discs
by Ivan March
Edition: Paperback
17 used & new from CDN$ 1.50

5.0 out of 5 stars Very Useful, Dec 24 2002
I find this to be a very comprehensive and useful guide. You will really find everything, from Symphonies to Piano Concertos, Oratorios to Operas...well as I said Everything.
This Edition includes also "some" DVD reviews, but here a lot is missing. Only a bunch are available and not the best...
To sum it up, I think that everyone needs an advice, or a guide, especially for the amateur so as not to be stuck with some ugly versions and there are lots...
This Guide is Very Useful. I Recommend it.

Verdi - Otello / Solti, Domingo, Te Kanawa, Royal Opera Covent Garden
Verdi - Otello / Solti, Domingo, Te Kanawa, Royal Opera Covent Garden
DVD ~ Plácido Domingo
Price: CDN$ 26.12
21 used & new from CDN$ 19.12

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the greatest Otello on DVD, Oct. 7 2002
This is, and by far, the best Otello available on DVD. It is far superior to Karajan's with Vickers in the tiltle role and mainly technically where the movie's picture rarely follows the sound.
Also, we have here a much better Iago (seguei Leiferkus) who is far superior to Glossop's Ugly Iago. Glossop is vulgar in both singing and acting. Leiferkus is far from being great. He overacts very often ("L'o vidi in man do Cassio" is desastrous)but is over all acceptable.
However, the main reason for owning this version is Domingo's Otello. Arguably, he is the Best. He has a weaker voice than Del Monaco (that is not necessarily bad) and he has a smaller voice than Vickers but he surpasses them both in the understanding of the role and in showing vocally Otello's power, rage and jealousy. And, very objectively he has a much more beautiful voice than both his "rivals".
Also remember that this is a DVD and we have to confess that No one acts as good as Domingo...
Solti's conducting is the other amazing feature and unlike Karajan there are no cut in the score.
Te Kanawa's Desdemona makes finally the perfect cake for this version...

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