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Reviews Written by
Keith Doyle (Panama City, FL United States)

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Rustlers' Rhapsody
Rustlers' Rhapsody
DVD ~ Tom Berenger
Offered by thebookcommunity_ca
Price: CDN$ 34.99
13 used & new from CDN$ 2.02

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Amusing, July 11 2004
This review is from: Rustlers' Rhapsody (DVD)
A western comedy? Not too many of those out there. Maybe that's why Rustler's Rhapsody isn't as well-known as it deserves to be.
I had a great time watching this. The humor level is above-average in terms of sophistication. It doesn't take itself too seriously but never degenerates to the point of absurdity. A good cast helps round out the film's enjoyment.
It's too bad there aren't any special features found on this disk. However, the low price makes up for it. Add the fact that this DVD is in anamorphic widescreen (the quality all widescreen movies should be in but aren't) and you have a terrific value. Highly recommended.

The Matrix Revolutions (Widescreen) (2 Discs)
The Matrix Revolutions (Widescreen) (2 Discs)
DVD ~ Keanu Reeves
Offered by megahitrecords canada
Price: CDN$ 5.27
88 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

3.0 out of 5 stars The Matrix Convoluted, July 4 2004
This final film in the Matrix trilogy left me with too many unanswered questions. How can Neo physically influence the machines in the real world? Exactly what happened with Neo and Smith at the culmination of their fight? What will the relationship be between the humans and machines from now on?
Even if such issues were explained I would still have some gripes. When Smith was possessing that human's body he didn't show enough signs of hurt from the damage done to it. I would think an AI which isn't used to enduring physical discomfort would be overwhelmed by such painful sensations. Also, I found the emotions of the human characters to be unconvincing. Their reactions to the story's events didn't fill me with a sense of believability.
With that being said, I still enjoyed the movie, overall. The action and visuals are what save this film from being mediocre. The Zion assault scene is amazing. Neo's climatic fight with Smith is less impressive but still pretty neat. The Matrix Revolutions probably has the greatest effects of any movie thus far.
I rather liked the message the story conveyed at the end. Faith is an underused yet heartening element in modern TV and cinema.
There's a bit of info in the special features that mentions why a new actor was used for the character of the Oracle. The original died. I'm glad they explained that because I thought the Oracle's change of appearance was illogical.
I think we'll all agree that the first movie deserved better. The Matrix Revolutions will be known as the last chapter in a good trilogy that should've been great.

Samurai Jack: Season 1
Samurai Jack: Season 1
DVD ~ Various
Price: CDN$ 33.70
19 used & new from CDN$ 19.77

5.0 out of 5 stars Stylish Quality, May 25 2004
This review is from: Samurai Jack: Season 1 (DVD)
I absolutely love this show. Samurai Jack explodes with a level of style rarely seen. The action, animation and stories are all fantastic. This is an extremely well done TV series.
The character of Jack is an immensely charismatic hero. His courage, resourcefulness and ethical code serves as a breath of fresh air in today's sea of common, immoral TV characters. This samurai actually inspires me to better myself in the real world. Not many shows have that effect and even fewer cartoons do!
The only special features in this set I liked was getting to see what some of the voice actors looked like.
The chance to own the whole first season must not be missed by Samurai Jack fans. I await the next season on DVD eagerly. Highly recommended to anyone who is interested in the following: samurais, clever plots, style.

Futurama: Volume 3 (Bilingual) [Import]
Futurama: Volume 3 (Bilingual) [Import]
DVD ~ Billy West
Offered by The Digital Vault
Price: CDN$ 67.99
24 used & new from CDN$ 6.09

5.0 out of 5 stars Undeserving Of Cancellation, May 13 2004
Futurama is one of the best animated comedies in history, in my opinion. Both smart and stupid people can laugh at it's content. The potent humor mercilessly pounds anyone into hysterical submission until they're overcome with comical joy. At least, that's what it did for me.
A few folks might not be able to appreciate the science fiction-gone-crazy theme, but it doesn't matter to the rest of us because we're too busy enjoying the show.
Volume three continues the series' impeccable quality. Same attention to detail, same incomparable sci-fi comedy. There are new audio quips given by select Futurama characters at the beginning of each chapter menu. They are a nice, amusing touch.
My favorite episode: Anthology of Interest II. I wonder how many viewers understood the "all your base are belong to us" gag.

Futurama: Volume 2 [Import]
Futurama: Volume 2 [Import]
DVD ~ Billy West
Offered by The Digital Vault
Price: CDN$ 67.99
27 used & new from CDN$ 6.82

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Great Futurama DVD Set, May 12 2004
This review is from: Futurama: Volume 2 [Import] (DVD)
Here's more of the same, which is exactly what I want! Volume two continues Futurama's technique of taking comedic material to the Nth level. The stories are still inventive. The humor is still rich. A healthy knowledge of modern history and culture will help viewers' appreciation of the show.
This is the kind of comedy that makes me laugh loud enough for other people in the house to approach and ask, "what's so funny?" When they stay to watch they, too, are laughing. There's so much to enjoy.
Each Futurama disk comes with it's own slim case, which I think is great.
I don't think volume two is any better than volume one. Not that it matters since both DVD sets offer fantastic laughs.

Futurama: Volume 1 (Bilingual) [Import]
Futurama: Volume 1 (Bilingual) [Import]
DVD ~ Billy West
Offered by UNIQ DEALS
Price: CDN$ 69.65
38 used & new from CDN$ 1.44

5.0 out of 5 stars Even Better Than The Simpsons, May 10 2004
That title may be biased since I'm a science fiction fan. The Simpsons is great. But Futurama tickles a funny bone in me that only a crazy, fantasy-based, anything-goes series can. Futurama takes a hilarious spin on the extreme evolution of modern society. The result is a show whose content and events seem unlikely yet convincingly plausible. It's all held together by interesting stories and competent visuals. There's very little to find fault here. Most important, the show is funny! Perhaps there's a generous portion of lowbrow humor that prevails through the series but I can forgive that. Futurama's overall quality more than makes up for it.
The use of subtle computer animation in many scenes is a surprising but welcome treat. It cleverly reflects the show's futuristic theme. If any cartoon should pioneer such an animation style it's this one.
My favorite episode in volume one: Fear Of A Bot Planet.

Silent Hill 3 - PlayStation 2
Silent Hill 3 - PlayStation 2
9 used & new from CDN$ 34.05

4.0 out of 5 stars Great Value In Terror, Nov. 5 2003
The Silent Hill series has always stood toe-to-toe with the Resident Evil series. Both do a good job of entertaining players with realistic environments, monstrous adversaries and compelling storylines. But Silent Hill takes the creepiness factor to a much higher level. Unless you're an incredibly desensitized individual Silent Hill 3 will certainly freak you out.
SH3's storyline has strong ties to the first game; a fact which should thrill fans of the series. The plot starts out a little sparse but fleshes out toward the end. Compared to Silent Hill 2's story SH3's is easily understood. But remember, this is the world of Silent Hill...expect to devote some brain power to comprehend everything.
Sound effects and ambiance are where the Silent Hill series shine and this installment is the best yet. The audio does exactly what it needs to do with eerie effectiveness. You'll hear things in the distance, unearthly noises will appear unexpectedly, and the sound of inhuman creatures (whether they're killing or being killed) is...gruesome.
The only thing I would have preferred, and this might sound strange, is more horror. With all the sights and sounds encountered throughout SH3 there are precious few occurrences where something actually appears to justify the tension! I think the developers missed a lot of opportunities to maximize the game's potential and really frighten the wits out of players. The first two Silent Hills had the same problem so I doubt Konami will improve this factor in future installments. Oh well, I suppose perfection is too much to ask for.
There are many reasons to play through Silent Hill 3 multiple times, such as unlocking more selectable options, equipping alternate outfits for the main character Heather, using fantastic new weapons, and viewing different endings.
The game's entire soundtrack is included on a nifty bonus CD totally free! Some of the music on the disk is really good, adding value to an already worthwhile package.

Hulk (Widescreen Special Edition) [2 Discs] (Bilingual) [Import]
Hulk (Widescreen Special Edition) [2 Discs] (Bilingual) [Import]
DVD ~ Eric Bana
Offered by M and N Media Canada
Price: CDN$ 37.09
29 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

3.0 out of 5 stars Needs Less Art, More Cinematics, Nov. 3 2003
The more I watch this movie the more I forgive it for disappointing me at it's summer 2003 release. Hulk really isn't bad, it's just misunderstood much like ol' greenskin himself. The problem is the creators mixed the wrong kind of filming techniques for this movie. One person wanted it to focus on the characters' drama, another wanted it to resemble a comic book, and another thought it should rely on it's sci-fi roots.
I, like most who went to see Hulk expected a slam-packed, action-based summer blockbuster. What we saw was a movie that couldn't make up it's mind as to what kind of film it was trying to be! But darn it, the movie isn't as bad as people say it is. The acting was great, the action (what little there is) is heavy, and the Hulk looks awesome! One thing I really didn't care for was the infamous multi-panel presentation in certain scenes, combining multiple angles in the same frame. It was an annoying and unnecessary artistic endeavor.
The first thing that happens when you put the DVD in your player is you're forced to watch half a dozen short previews for other Universal DVD releases. There is no way to skip these previews but you CAN fast forward through them. Universal does this on purpose in the hopes such forced advertising succeeds in selling more of their products and it's underhanded of them.
The special features offer almost everything a viewer could want. I was particularly amused watching how the dogfight scene was filmed. Seeing the effects coordinators dress a real dog in a motion capture suit was something else. For those of us with an X-Box the 2nd disk has a nifty playable demo of the Hulk video game; a nice bonus. The making-of segments gave me a new appreciation of what went into the movie, and it will probably do the same for you.
Personally I think Hulk is a worthy purchase. Watching a large green monster convincingly wreak havoc in a feature film is satisfying on a primal level.

batteries not included (Widescreen) (Bilingual)
batteries not included (Widescreen) (Bilingual)
DVD ~ Hume Cronyn
Price: CDN$ 7.97
28 used & new from CDN$ 4.80

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Cute Film, Oct. 27 2003
When you think about it, there aren't too many movies with a premise like this one. I mean, robot aliens who resemble UFOs that can procreate, raise families, and repair anything at super speed? Pretty unusual.
Something else unusual is that the plot doesn't focus on the robots but the humans who are each trying to hang on to their little piece of home. The robots offer assistance to the main characters and add some comic relief, but the story centers on the human element. The story is well-told and unfolds at the right pace. I thought the acting was also pretty good.
There's one last thing worth mentioning. I notice that the video quality has an odd fuzziness to it. It's barely noticeable and not terribly distracting but potential viewers should be made aware of it. Personally it did nothing to detract from my enjoyment of the movie.
This film was made in 1987 so don't expect the special effects to be impressive by today's standards. Remember that, suspend disbelief, and you'll find *Batteries Not Included to be an entertaining experience.

Soul Calibur 2
Soul Calibur 2
32 used & new from CDN$ 1.61

5.0 out of 5 stars Weapon-Based Combat At It's Best, Oct. 22 2003
This review is from: Soul Calibur 2 (Video Game)
The sequel to the greatest weapon-based vs. game satisfies, for the most part, gamers' expectations. Soul Calibur II really is a marvel to behold; fluid animation, beautiful scenery, orchestrated music, perfect sound effects, and deep gameplay.
The X-Box version, for my money, is the best one. It has the best graphics, the shortest load times, and the coolest character. Yeah, Link has a bigger fan base but Spawn is just more of a badass, and that's the kind of character I want in Soul Calibur II.
When all is said and done however, what you have here is more of the same from the previous game. There are a few new characters but only three of them are fundamentally unique, including Spawn. The arenas now have walls which the fighters can be slammed up against. A new Weapon Master Mode replaces the Adventure Mode from Soul Calibur in which most of the hidden stuff can be unlocked (Weapon Master is a little easier than Adventure was, thank God). There's a larger variety in costumes and weapons for the characters, overall. Inexplicably, the Gallery pictures in Soul Calibur II are actually far fewer than in Soul Calibur! And that's it for differences between the two games. I would have liked to see more innovation in Soul Calibur II but I had too much fun playing to care.
The only real problem I have with the game is the females. Their costumes show way too much skin and certain body parts "jiggle" if you know what I mean. If I want to see that kind of thing I'll play Dead Or Alive. There's enough sexual suggestiveness everywhere else, I don't need it in Soul Calibur II, thanks.
Fortunately the pros far outweigh the cons. Any vs. game fan would be crazy not to add Soul Calibur II to their game library.

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