Archiv DVD-Reviews

DVD-Reviews: Terry Pratchett’s Discworld

My plans for getting at least one new review up before the end of the year were completely foiled – but at least I managed throw something festive together: the Discworld Collection, five reviews I translated last year for the 30th Anniversary of Terry Pratchett’s brillant satirical fantasy world. There are Cosgrove Hall’s two animated series from the 1990s and the three television miniseries made for Sky One between 2005 and 2010 – all of them very much worth watching. The articles are mostly about the series themselves, the technical reviews of the discs are, as usual, not the main focus. Here they are, in order the books  they are based on were originally released:

The Colour of Magic (SkyOne 2008) »
Wyrd Sisters (Cosgrove Hall 1997) »
Soul Music (Cosgrove Hall 1997) »
Hogfather (SkyOne 2005) »
Going Postal (SkyOne 2010) »

Plus some bonus Youtube links:
★ Trailers for The Colour of Magic and Going Postal (sorry, no proper one forHogfather to be found)
Wyrd Sisters & Soul Music (because the DVDs are very hard to find nowadays)

This posting also concludes the year 2014 for DVDLog, so I wish everyone happy holidays! More season’s greetings are over in the traditional end-of-year blog post. This website will go into the usual Winter hiatus now until roughly the end of January, when I’ll be back with some new stuff. Happy Hogswatch! :-)

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DVD-Review: The Prisoner

Another week later and I have to admit again that I had neither energy nor time to write something new, but at least I managed to pull something out of the archives again. Continuing the classic television theme, we’re going over to England, where one of the most intriguing and fascinating series ever was created: Patrick McGoohan’s The Prisoner. I have written numerous times about it and today’s article is yet another improvement of the existing review with a couple of added sections. Sadly, the original boxset including a thick book about the series does not seem to be available anymore, but the DVDs or Blu-Rays still are. It’s an amazing and unique series that deserves to be watched and belongs into every collection!

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DVD-Review: Get Smart

It does not look like I will be getting much writing done in the rest of the year except maybe one or two new reviews, so I thought I’d pull some old favourites out of the archives and make some improvements. For this Monday, I had another look at Get Smart, the one and only spy parody series from the late 1960s. I originally wrote this in 2010, but it’s still a great way to get acquainted with Maxwell Smart, Agent 99 and the Chief because I put tons of background information about the making of the series, which is still one of the great classics of American television.

Right now, you can get the whole series, all 138 episodes on 25 discs with tons of bonus material for only £42 from Amazon.co.uk (the boxset I reviewed in this article) and for $44 from Amazon.com (the US boxset is now finally affordable, too and apart from some differences in the image quality, basically identical with the UK version.)!

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DVD-Review: Monty Python Live (Mostly)

Nothing much positive might have happened in 2014, but there was at least one event that this year will certainly be remembered by – the reunion of the British comedy group Monty Python, who had not been together for over thirty years despite never officially splitting up. Everyone was skeptical if the could really do a great big stage show one more time as a last hurrah, but it worked marvellously and Monty Python Live (Mostly) – One Down, Five to Go became a rousing success and a wonderful farewell show full of their old favourites performed in a fresh and original way. Luckily, the last of the only ten stage shows at the O2 Arena in London was preserved as a film and now has been released on DVD and Blu-Ray all over the world. As a long-time Monty Python fan, I had no way around this disc and while it has some image quality issues, it’s still highly recommended for the show itself!

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DVD-Review: Mr Peabody & Sherman

Although I have to admit that I had only made a fleeting acquaintance with the Rocky & Bullwinkle Show and their time-travelling duo of Sherman and Mister Peabody, because they had never made it to German television, I was eagerly looking forward to Rob Minkoff’s big-screen adaption. The concept seemed a lot of fun and with Dreamworks behind it, Mr. Peabody & Sherman was bound to be a success – which it turned out to be. It’s the best time-travel adventure in a long time and one of the most wonderful movies of the studio, modernizing the original cartoon carefully without ignoring its beginning. The German home video release was a world premiere, although the DVD edition leaves a lot to be desired in the extras department despite the flawless technical representation. Today’s review, as usual, concentrates more on the movie than on the DVD itself, so I’m going to have an in-depth look at what makes Mr. Peabody & Sherman tick. The German disc has been out since September, the UK release is today and North America will follow next Tuesday on the 14th.

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DVD-Reviews: The Hound of the Baskervilles

Before I write anything else, I have some unfinished business with a certain master detective – this is the final part of my Quest for Sherlock Holmes and round two of Holmes vs. Holmes! Which Sherlock is the best? There were two great television adaptations of The Hound of the Baskervilles in the 1980s, one with Ian Richardson and the other with Jeremy Brett. In today’s double-header of reviews, which are based on earlier German-language articles, I have looked at both movies in detail and found some surprising differences. Both have their advantages and disadvantages and I tried to be neutral in the reviews, but my favourite version is, of course, the one with Jeremy Brett. Maybe there’s a bit of that coming through in the articles, which are less about the DVDs than about the movies themselves.

Continue to The Hounds of the Baskervilles (Ian Richardson) »
Continue to The Hounds of the Baskervilles (Jeremy Brett) »

Note that this will probably be the last of my Sherlock Holmes reviews – there are three other movies from the Granada series, but I have already written about them a little in the review of the third boxset and since they are the least successful parts of the series, I will skip them for now.

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DVD-Review: Cosmos – A Spacetime Odyssey

It was just one year ago when the first glimpse of the new incarnation of Carl Sagan’s Cosmos, now called Cosmos – A Spacetime Odyssey was revealed to the public – now, the series has not only been completed, but also broadcast and released on home video. Initially, I was not even sure if I could afford the DVD set, but then the price finally dropped and I was not able to resist importing the Region 1 release. The series is every bit as amazing as its predecessor and Neil deGrasse Tyson was a brilliant choice for the new host walking in the footsteps of the late Carl Sagan. Even the involvement of Fox has not hurt the series and the studio has also put together a solid home video release containing not only the complete episodes, but also some very worthwhile extras. Today’s article is first and foremost a long, in-depth review of the series itself, but I also have the usual look at the excellent DVD release itself.

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DVDLog Review Index Upgrade

In between writing something new, I finally did what I should have done a long time ago: to prepare a new Review Index with only the English-language articles in it. I replaced the older index, which I had not updated for over a year, with it, but still left a link to the original. This is just a quick fix to end the chaos of the old index, but in the future there will be three lists: the master index with the English reviews, a legacy list of the German reviews and a third index of all the DVDs in my collection, the latter two for requesting purposes. At the moment, there are “only” 44 reviews in the new main index, but I hope to write slowly, but steadily more. If anyone has requests for unreviewed discs or untranslated reviews, I’d like to hear them! You can always contact me here in the comments, via Email or over on Google+, Twitter or Facebook.

So, in lieu of any actually new reviews, please accept this index as proof that DVDLog isn’t dead yet! Two brand-new reviews are in the making, but judging from the extremely warm weather coming in the next days, they are still going to take a while – one of the discs hasn’t even arrived here yet!

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DVD-Review: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (2005)

Originally intended as a direct followup to last month’s Towel Day posting about the original television series, it’s better late than never with today’s article about The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy in its 2005 cinema incarnation. Completed four years after Douglas Adams had passed away, it was still very much a creation of its original author with a passionate crew of filmmakers and actors brilliantly succeeding in making not only a movie, but also a loving memorial. Sadly, the quirky humour and its utter Britishness failed to impress many viewers unfamiliar to Douglas Adams’ work and while the movie managed to financially break even, its success was so minimal that a sequel was never made – but it stands well enough on its own. Today’s review tells the story how the movie came about in a translated, expanded and improved version of an earlier German article.

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DVD-Review: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Today is Towel Day, the annual rememberance of Douglas Adams and his Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy in its multiple incarnations. Because I certainly know where my towel is, I finally managed to translate and improve my original article about the original 1981 television series, which was based not on the books, but actually on the radio series. It might be corny and low-budget over thirty years later, but next to the radio play and the 2005 movie, it remains simply the best and most original incarnation of Douglas Adams’ story until today. Watch the earth get blown up with Arthur Dent and Ford Prefect making a narrow escape! Vogon poetry reading! Space battles! Two-headed presidents on the run from the law! Listen to Marvin, the depressed robot argue with a smug talking door! All lovingly restored with many interesting extras on DVD from the BBC and even though the release is already twelve years old, it’s still the best way to watch the series. Read all about the beginnings of the Hitchhiker’s Guide and the creation of the radio play and television series in today’s article.

Continue to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Review »
Bonus Youtube Link: Douglas Adams on the South Bank Show »
Bonus Youtube Douglas Adams Playlist » from my Towel Day posting on the other blog.

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