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Inaccuracies aside, a watchable peril film
The premise of the movie revolves around three skiers, two best friends and one of their recent girlfriends, who take to a day on the slopes which is an age old tradition for the two lads with the new girlfriend tagging along, much to the disgust of the friend. Things take a turn for the worse when they persuade a ski lift operator to let them go for one last run and a mix up causes the lifts to be turned off, leaving the three stranded and having to make life or death decisions.
I will get it out of the way first, this is a low budget film and has numerous inaccuracies and plot holes you can drive a train through; seemingly no checks on the lifts coming down, ill prepared, no mobile phones, packs of wolves unafraid of humans, illogical survival techniques, you start to get the picture! Although, if you try to put aside some logic and just take the film on face value, there is entertainment to be had.
In a similar vein to predecessor peril films for example Open Water, this film takes an ordinary action, squeezing in one last ski lift run, and turns it into an exceptional life threatening situation. Due to the girlfriend being inexperienced in snowboarding / skiing, the three don't manage to get off the beginner slopes during the day, so decide to take a late run and persuade the ski lift operator to let them on for one last ride of the day. After much deliberation he lets them on however he is called away and a slight mix-up between the staff results in the lift and lights being turned off as the ski lift staff go home for the week, leaving the three stranded high up on the ski lift.
This leads to horrific incidents as the three have to make life altering decisions as to how they are going to get themselves out of the situation they are in, knowing the likelihood of anybody coming up the mountain is very slim due to the resort being closed till the next weekend. Some of the decisions made are a little erratic, but it does lead to some entertaining scenes, and at times you can understand and feel the immense fear of the situation they are left in.
In summary if you are prepared to sit and be entertained rather than picking on plot holes and inaccuracies, contemplating what you may have done instead, you can get a reasonable nights entertainment out of the film.
We stayed at the Whitehaven B&B following the rave reviews received on Trip Advisor, and we were not disappointed! The rooms were spotless, very comfortable bed, and it had all the little extras that we required. The bathrooms are a little on the small side, but this is very normal for a B&B and was perfect for our needs.
The room was cleaned, bed made and towels / bedding changed each night! The breakfasts were great with any amount of cereal and fruit available before a tray of toast and a full English (there is a full alternative menu including Whitby's famous kippers if you book them in advance), which hit the spot on both mornings. The hosts are very friendly without being intrusive and are a wealth of information for those that are not familiar with Whitby and the surrounding area.
There is no private parking, but the roadside parking was plentiful and there is a car park right next door if you would prefer to pay for parking. As for location, it is within walking distance of town (approximately 5 minute walk) and taxis are only about £4 if you decide you've had a few too many to walk back after a night out!
Overall a great little B&B, very competitive price and we will be staying again!
The Actual Film
HBO rarely misses a beat with their mini-series productions, generally being of fantastic quality, and this one is no different. Based on the novel Generation Kill written by Rolling Stone journalist Evan Wright, the series shows in vivid detail the events of the Iraq invasion in 2003 from a reporters view embedded in the 1st Recon Battalion of the US Marine Corps. The series lasts 7 episodes spanning Evans' 2 months with the Recon Marines leading from their deployment in Camp Mathilda in Kuwait to their goal, Baghdad.
The one thing that made this series stick out immediately for me was the fact that it does not glorify the campaign as so many war films / series tend to do. The failings of the campaign are picked up in great detail by Wright with no sugar coating from the offset. Orders are shown being sent through the chain of campaign as officers who far from agree have to pass them down the chain of command to their far from understanding marines. The marines are often complaining about the lack and quality of the equipment they have been distributed with some resorting to purchasing their own equipment and devices!
The actual characters really help to make this a great series with the reporter, played by Lee Tergesen looking genuinely shocked and confused as he is thrust into a war situation. The characters in the corps tend to revolve around the reporter with the focus being on the lead humvee of Bravo Company with the 'Iceman' at the helm, and in tow his sidekick Josh Ray Person who is the life of the humvee, and the rather troubled Trombley who tends to be in the back with the reporter. Characters such as 'The Godfather' funnelling down the orders and the physco that is 'Captain America' really help to capture the grandeur of the chaos that ensues throughout the invasion. It really does help when watching a series like this when you can feel for and relate to the characters and their trials and tribulations, loving some and hating others, really makes you feel involved. Some of the characters in the series are even played by the actual marines involved in the invasion such as Rudy 'Fruity Rudy' Reyes which helps to give a realistic edge to the action.
Overall this is another great min-series from HBO, almost rivalling the fantastic Band of Brothers, but not quite toppling it. A gritty enthralling insight into the invasion of Iraq, well worth a watch, and very much worth paying the few extra pounds for the Blu-Ray release, you will not be disappointed!
The series comes on 3 discs, including all the extras from the DVD release, but unusually they are presented in full HD which is a very welcome bonus. Bonus features over the DVD version on the Blu-Ray include a very handy 'Chain of command' whilst viewing, which lets you check at any point who is who, what their rank and vehicle is etc, which is very useful in the early episodes if you have never seen the series before. Also included are 'Mission Maps' which lets you view how far the regiment has progressed through Iraq whilst watching and a 'Military glossary' giving you a rundown of any military terminology used.
The video quality is very gritty, which I believe is the intention, and it does work well in full 1080P HD, although there is some small compression issues but these are hardly noticeable. There is an English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack included which really does enhance the whole series, planting you firmly in the middle of the action, possibly not so great for the neighbours though!
I have shopped at thehut.com for numerous years now, it may not be one of the biggest branded online stores, but you may be surprised that it is part of the same group as the like of Zavvi, PC World Entertainment, Asda Entertainment, Argos Entertainment and a couple more, so it is not an unknown quantity.
I have had a couple of issues with pricing and stock, with items sometimes showing as in stock for a rather low price but then orders being cancelled due to no stock, only to find the product back in stock hours later with a new price, but this is thankfully not a common issue as some people seem to think.
The shipping times are a little longer than some online companies, with orders sometimes taking more than 5 working days to arrive, but if you are prepared to wait, the products are generally very cheap and there is a varied amount of products in stock.
Overall I would not hesitate to use thehut or to recommend them to a friend, just don't expect super quick delivery.
This is a review primarily of the online front of the Fashion store Republic. Having now used the website for numerous orders, I can't help but be impressed with the service and quality of the products on each of the occasions I have used them.
I generally only use the website when special offers are available, such as free delivery or a % off sale, which does reduce the price of the products dramatically, some can be a little on the expensive side without the reductions. However, offers do tend to come up very often, and if you sign up to the website you will get regular emails informing you of when the offers are live on the site.
The quality of the garments differs, but for the price the main brand they sell, SoulCal is reasonable quality for every day wear, possibly not for nights out etc, although they do have a SoulCal deluxe range which tends to be a better quality of garment. Alongside the SoulCal, they do offer other major brands such as Diesel, G-Star, Bench, Levis, Wrangler, Firetrap etc.
The delivery times have been second to none for me, with two orders turning up the next day even though I only paid for the standard delivery, but usually the orders are delivered within 48 hours of you placing the order.
The actual website is very easy to navigate, using drop down menus, and allowing multiple filters for price, brand, size, and product type etc to help you drill down to the products you are searching for. Once a product is selected it is simple to view in the variation of colours offered and has a selection of images to browse through and zoom into for further inspection. There is also a store checker if you would prefer to visit an actual store to see the product first hand.
Any products that arrive that you are unhappy with can be returned in a local store to help alleviate postage issues. Overall the shopping experience with Republic online is second to none; I would have no hesitation in recommending them to anyone.
The basic premise of the movie is about two young lads growing up in 80's Britain who view a video of Sylvester Stallone in action in Rambo, akin to the title, and attempt to recreate some of the stunts in a film of their own making.
The film comes across as a comedy / parody, excessively recreating 80's Britain and for the laughs focussing on the stunts the two kids lovingly and innocently recreate from the 18 film Rambo. The two kids seem to strike up a great onscreen camaraderie and have great screen presence for such young unknown actors.
I did enjoy Son of Rambow, but I was left wanting more. In parts it had me in stitches enjoying the nostalgic magic, but there were too many large lulls of action/comedy in the film that left me wondering what could have been. Overall it is good family entertainment, but I just feel it could have been so much more.
Growing up in the North East, Chubby Brown is a man that many people have heard of, for his ruthless blue comedy routines, but not many know about the man himself. The autobiography 'Common as Muck' provides an insight to the man under the helmet that is Roy Chubby Brown, Royston Vasey.
It may not be as rude and crude as his live performances, but it certainly is a 'from the heart' autobiography. Seemingly inspired by his recent fight with cancer, the story to's and fro's between the recent fight with cancer and his climb up the comedy ladder through the pubs and clubs of the North East to the biggest theatres in London. Details from his comedy route to the 'top' to his relationship antics to his spree in jails and young offenders homes to his experience with cancer, all is revealed in a no holds barred autobiography, written by the man himself.
The book provides an insight into the process of becoming "the rudest man in comedy", a great read for fans and critics alike.
Paul Film Review
Simon Pegg and Nick Frost join forces once more to parody the Sci-Fi genre in an attempt to follow on from the success of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz
I've read numerous reviews on the newest incarnation from Pegg & Frost with the consensus seeming to be it's a bit like Marmite, you either love it or hate it, I for one am a geek at heart and I am very much in the latter category.
The basic premise of the film is of two geeks, Simon Pegg & Nick Frost, attending a Comic Con (a massive event in the geek calendar!) and extending this to a tour around all of the extra terrestrial crash sites in the area. On their tour they come across a wise cracking alien, Seth Rogan, who has escaped from Area 51 and is on the run to try and get back home. Paul joins up with the boys in their Winnebago and they set off on a journey to get him home whilst being chased by the government and meeting up with a multitude of crazy people on the way.
Pegg and Frost basically play the same characters they have in their previous two movies, which although some people may think is getting a little tired, it does work. Couple this with a fabulously created CGI character, Paul voiced by Seth Rogan (the alien is very akin to Seth Rogan himself!), playing the wise cracking role he loves you have an excellent core cast, we even see Sigourney Weaver make a fleeting appearance!
Paul is a laugh a minute movie but is hindered by the fact that you are half expecting the jokes/gags before they actually come about, with parodies from many of the past great Sci-Fi's, not quite as subtle as the previous two films.
Possibly not hit the heights of the first two movies but regardless of this it still is a must see comedy and provides a great nights entertainment. Frost and Pegg still have life in them as a double act and long may it continue.