- Premium reviews
- Express reviews
- Reviews rated
- Ratings received
...and probably better than 100%. Dislike him or love him, as an artist Eminem aka Slim Shady aka Marshall Mathers is simply brilliant. Quite easily the best of a short line of white rappers (Marky Mark, Beastie Boys) he has been accepted by the black rapping community, and by most of rap fans and non-fans alike. Yes, he seems very controversial, but that's only because of his mainstream acclaim. Many other rappers have said and done far wosre, it's just this is the album that most pre-teens will buy out of any of them. His songs are quite simply brilliant, not only catchy and well-executed, but his lyrics are quite sensational. In his latest album, the Marshall Mathers LP, Eminem takes shots at the gov't, a nanny state, obsessive fans and celebrity. His lyrics have a lot of meaning, trying in one to explain himself, why he seems so angry all the time. And in others, he just sinks into a vitriolic lair of hate at homosexuals, women and his wife and his mother. So you may dislike him because of his personality and his image (he has divorced his childhood sweetheart and his mother is suing him for slander), but isten to his music carefully and you will see there is more to eminem than just the anarchistic Slim Shady. Wait until the absolutely brilliant "Stan" is released - quite different to his other work, it has melody and a tune to it, as opposed to just a great beat. I think it will convert a lot of narrow-minded people, and of course reach no.1.
Well, in the last few months England have sunk from bad to worse. After the dismal performance in Euro 2000, the nation was further embarrassed by Keegan's refusal to quit despite the fact that the 3 other semi-finalists' managers all had. So Keegan went on, and into the last game at Wembley under the Twin Towers, where...we lost dismally. All this talk of a glorious ending to awaken England's spirit again faded away, and Keegan quit. Whilst a great player - not the most talented, but the most hard-working - he could not achieve the same success as a manager. He, even more so than as a player, had very little managerial talent - 'tactically naive' was the most complimentary comment - and thought that just by willing his players to work harder he could make them win. Er, no. So now, the FA are looking for a new saviour. All roads pointed to Venables, the only good recent Engalnd manager, tactically excellent, although perhaps not quite so talented in the financial sector. This was the man that everyone wanted: the public, 18 out of the 20 Premiership managers, all the old players from 1966. But no, the FA has gone with the first foreigner. Why Erikkson?! I mean, he is an excellent manager, so maybe the question to ask is 'why a foreigner?' It is a fact that only 3rd world or developing football nation employ foreign managers, such as Australia (Venables) or Nigeria (probably the best of the 'developing' bunch). No country has ever won a World Cup with a foreign manager, and none of the top footballing nations have one. France and Germany are laughing at the FA's choice, which implies that England couldn't find a domestic coach that is up to scratch. I don't want to seem arrogant or overpatriotic, but England, who invented our national game of football, can cope by themselves, thankyou. Or even if they can't (like now) I would rather stumble along knowing we tried our best and didn&
#39;t run to Sweden for help. I know many agree with me, although it is a sad fact that many will also warm to Erikkson if he performs well. Ah, fickle, fickle... As for the Swede himself, I think that England's main problem is that they don't gel - and how is a foreign coach, who has recently admitted that he doesn't know anything about English football, going to do that? This whole saga - still ongoing, the FA is further embarrassing themselves by 'begging' Lazio to release him early - is disgraceful. And the money that he is getting is atrocious: £10m-15m over 5 years, plus a £1m bonus for reaching the World Cup - as if this is some spectacular achievement. And all this while the FA are not funding our future footballing prospects. So now England have a Scot, Adam Crozier (who came form a non-football background, advertising) and a Swede running the national game. El Tel, a nation turns its lonely hearts to you...
Well, the Collyer brothers do it again, the new season update to the modern classic CM3 and the latest in the gaming phemnomenon of Champ Man is here! I'll assume you're familiar with the CM series and CM3. This is the update that for the new seasons, with all the new (except Collmore and Keegan - but go to the SI website for a patch) transfers/promotions. However, there are also many more tweaks to make this worth buying, not just for the updates. Now there is more involvement with the press, so you can respond to the media. This is quite fun, it really does affect the players. Also, there are more coach/physio involvement - such as asking for reports. Another added interactive option is that your can sort of converse with the FA, about fixtures, referees, etc. There are also many other tweaks, which are too 'insignificant' and numerous to mention here, but make the game that much more enjoyable and playable. Finally there is the data editor, which allows you to make your OWN changes to the stats (I suggest making Joe Cole and Stephen Gerrard better). It's quite hard to find this, there's nothing in the manual - just go to the file and look for it there. I hope this persuades you to buy this game, all football fans should buy it. If this opinion was a little concise, it's because I'm off to play it some more!
For all Londoners and those from further afeild, I'd just like to tell you what I think about this year's FF. I haven't been to the London, or any, Film Festival before. But what makes me excited is the prospect of Cameron Crowe's Almost Famous and Ang Lee's Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon being shown. Both of these movies are supposed to be excellent, and whilst I can wait for Almost Famous, I don't know if I can wait until January for CT,HD (starring the great Chow Yun Fat). This is the only film that would make me take a day off college for except for maybe a preview of Star Wars Episode II :-). As for the other films, look at the website :-).
Well, you must have read all the other reviews and most of them are true. I will not go into specifics as you can read about these elsewhere, just give you my opinion. Basically, DC involves 6 teenagers as they face high school life together. What makes this show different is that they are not 'normal' teenagers - they psychoanalize each other, talk about relationships and generally speak extremely long words. I remember when Dawson, when cheated on by Joey, said that "This provides me with no solace". I laughed for about 10 minutes! But I like this programme. Although many hate it for it's pretentiousness and extremely cheesy sequences, the characters are so well written (despite them being cliched) that you can't help but get drawn into their spell. The scenery is beautiful, and that includes the actors (Katie Homes!) despite them being almost 30, playing teenagers. And of course, as in every Kevin Williamson project, films play a very large part of their life. It is true that movies are the books and theatres of my generation. Overall, a very likeable programme if you give it a chance. If you don't like it now you never will. However, this has been a cult hit for almost all teenagers and, so I've heard, some adults too.
So much has been written on the most hyped movie of all time...and so much was expected. In my opinion, it didn't deliver. This is my Star Wars fan critique, so I'm not going into tedious plot explanations that you can read elsewhere - so includes *SPOILERS*. Basically, from the trailers this looked like a kick-ass film, but it was very misleading. What appeared to be a plot surrounding Darth Maul was in fact not that: Maul had hardly any screen time at all, and what little time he had was wasted. Ray Park was outstanding, but you have to ask why was Darth Maul in Episode 1 if he was just going to be killed. Yes, maybe it shows the backplot in the Obiwan/Anakin story, but really his role was redundant. Apart from that, the trailers failed to give due warning to the most controversial subject in Star Wars since the Special Editions (or perhaps Princess Leia's gold bikini) - JarJar! He is intensely irritating, much more so than Ewoks (who I find kinda endearing) and his character is pointless. The childlike drivel that he spews is stupid, and he just clowns around like a slapstick figure. Which brings me to another point: old Georgie Lucas seems to have made a movie solely for kids. I mean, Star Wars was perhaps not the most mature movie of all time, but at least it wasn't insulting to the intelligence. You have the rastafarian Gungans, the idiotically chinese sounding (and I am chinese) Nemodians...what was George's obsession with stupid accents? Of course, Lucas has never been the best for writing dialogue. He was very inconsistent in the original trilogy, sometimes writing some brilliant lines ("do or do not...there is no try") and some absolutely dire. This time most were dire. I submit this evidence: "Yoda talked about midichlorians. I was wondering:what are midichlorians?" (Anakin) or: "Exqueeeeze me!" (JarJar) These are paraphrased, but I hope you can see
how truly cringe-inducing these lines are. And the acting wasn't much better. Some of the blame must fall on Lucas, as he has always been known as a poor actor's director. Ewan McGregor should have been given some guidance about his character - i felt him too insignificant. Others are plain bad actors, like Jake Lloyd, infamously dubbed "Mannequin Skywalker" by crew for his wooden acting. Lucas seemed more intent on the SFX - which were outstanding and desrved the Oscar - and this reflected on the acting. How can any actor give a great performance (apart from the late, great Alec Guiness) against a backdrop of blue screens? And in the upcoming prequels, even more SFX shots are promised - let's hope the acting is better. But the film isn't all bad - just disappointing. The fight scenes are truly spectacular, with Wu-Shu trained Ray Park proving himself an outstanding martial arts weapons expert. And the race scene is also excellent. But the main disappointment was that this film wasn't more memorable - it pales against the original trilogy. Although the hype was excessive, I would have been content with more of the same: a fantastical space adventure, with good action scenes. This is what Star Wars is about. But Lucas almost changed it into a parody, a farce in some places. Definitely worth watching, and as always, George will sell the tapes (or DVDs when they come out) by the truckload. It seems he has got complacent in his fatcat-like success. I only hope the magic returns in the action-cum-romance that is Episode II
Well, Craig David can certainly sing. He has a great voice, and charisma. But enough about the good points. He may have started out on an underground garage hit, Rewind, but he quickly sold out (if that's what you consider it to be) to making what I consider to be poor R&B songs. Maybe it's just I don't like commercial pop-like music. What really annoys me - and I accept my opinion is more on the man than the music - is that he is so self-centred. He is so full of himself it's unbelievable! At every opportunity (and he's on the box a lot nowadays) he sings his answers to questions. I mean, yeah, he has a good voice, but does he need to be so annoyingly smug and in-your-face about it? Give us a break! I really can't stand this guy - and this makes me begin to hate his music too.
Well, here it is...my top ten, and it’s a long read. You can tell a lot about someone by their favorite movie, it's a something that I like to know about someone. I like all genres of film, so I would like to think that my list is not only my favourite ten movies, but would rank high on any critic's or movie lover’s list too. 1. GOODFELLAS Martin Scorsese's epic mafia movie is simply sublime. The plot is strong, about the experiences of Henry Hill (Ray Liotta), who "always wanted to be a gangster", and his life in the Mob. Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, Paul Sorvino and all the other usual suspects play other Mob members. Scorsese directs with unbelievable flair – 2-minute tracking shots, vivid colours, atmospheric effects – you name it, he does it. The acting and cast is out of this world, as is the soundtrack. This movie is so many people’s (mostly men) favourite movie because of its themes of friendship, loyalty and betrayal. My favourite; if you haven’t yet seen it, please go and get it NOW! 2. THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK Whilst Star Wars is usually higher on ‘greatest of all time’ lists, this was mainly because it was the first in the original trilogy. And, although the first was groundbreaking and original – and in many people’s eyes, the true classic – ESB is simply a better movie. It has better SFX, a darker plot, superior fight scenes, the most consistent acting in the whole trilogy, and (dare I speak out against George?) more experienced direction. Many Star Wars fans agree – the 2nd part was the best. 3. RAIN MAN You either love it or you hate it. Many love Rain Man. Tom Cruise puts in a likeable performance as selfish yuppie, doing what he does best. Dustin Hoffman puts in one of the greatest performances of all time as his autistic brother, who turns Cruise’s world upside down when Cruise discovers his existen
ce after his father’s death. This film is touching, well acted, and at times very funny. 4. BLADE RUNNER Harrison Ford’s greatest role, and Ridley Scott’s greatest achievement. Los Angeles has become a wonderfully dark and foreboding metropolis in the near future, and Deckard (Ford) is a Blade Runner – someone who hunts down androids with A.I. – on these mean streets. The plot of the film is Deckard chasing down these humanoid Replicants – but the point of the story is whether or not Deckard is a Replicant. I’ll leave you to make up your own mind. Scott has recently revealed that he ‘is’, but I do not think he can just decide this; it’s just his opinion. I believe (or hope) that Deckard is human. This film contains some of the most stunning visuals ever created – not bad for a 1982 film. 5. APOCALYPSE NOW Francis Ford Coppola’s Vietnam masterpiece, dealing with the nature of war and men. A military captain is sent down river to “exterminate” a renegade colonel’s command. Martin Sheen is the soldier; Marlon Brando plays the deranged – yet sane – commando leader. The plot and dialogue is fantastic, and Coppola has really created the ‘heart of darkness’ of Vietnam. He said “Apocalypse Now is not about Vietnam, it IS Vietnam”. How true. The tortuous filming of this ambitious epic project is almost as famous as the movie itself. 6. TERMINATOR 2 For me not just a high-octane action film – although that it is – but also a genre-twisting sci-fi / action adventure from James Cameron. More action than sci-fi than The Terminator, it stills has the ingenious plot that made the first so critical approved. All the main characters are back, with Arnie in his signature role and Linda Hamilton outstanding in her new hard-woman performance. This movie has possibly the greatest number of quot
able lines in any movie – I love it! 7. SILENCE OF THE LAMBS Jonathan Demme’s masterpiece, this raw, chilling and striking adaptation from Thomas Harris’s brilliant book is excellent in every department. Only the second winner of the 5 main Oscars, it thoroughly deserves it. The acting is stupendous – Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins (also one of the greatest ever performances) have chemistry like you wouldn’t believe. The direction is decidedly dark and builds tension when called for. A wonderful movie, from a wonderful book. Superb in every way. 8. THE KILLER Possibly John Woo’s greatest movie, it is certainly my favourite (although I haven’t seen Bullet in the Head or A Better Tomorrow). The film is classic Hong Kong cinema – action, loyalty and Chow Yun-Fat. Chow Yun-Fat and Woo again team up to create the best hitman movie of all time (better than Leon, and the less serious Grosse Pointe Blank). Danny Lee puts in a fine supporting performance as the police man after this Killer, who eventually becomes Chow’s partner, out of pure respect. Although the action is not as hardcore as Hard Boiled, this film will still blow away anyone who has only seen Woo’s recent Hollywood work, or anyone else’s work for that matter. 9. FORREST GUMP I know many of you will call this sentimentalised propaganda rubbish, but it’s on my list because it never fails to move me. I could watch this again and again; Tom Hank’s performance is so likeable. Robert Zemeckis directs with compassion and gets the best out of his main man and supporting cast (Gary Sinise is excellent) during this odyssey through modern American history, and the remarkable life of one Forrest Gump. 10. ENTER THE DRAGON Bruce Lee’s best film, and the best kung fu film ever, in my opinion. This is again a typically eastern movie with themes of loyalty and honour, but wit
h a western twist. A strong plot, great fight scenes and an amazingly talented supporting cast of martial artists makes this a true classic. Tragically, Lee’s last film before his untimely death. Well, that’s it. What has surprised me is the number of movies that were made in the 1990’s. My final total was 4 movies from the 90’s, 4 from the 80’s and only 2 from the 70’s – and yet I’ve always considered the 70’s to be the best decade for film. I am also almost disappointed that I have no films from the pre-70’s – including many classics. I guess it’s just that modern films have more of an impact on me. It was very hard making my top ten, and I had to be very ruthless on many occasions. I would like to list some of the contenders for my top ten list: NEARLY MADE IT Boogie Nights – I love this film; it’s incredibly funny and is an epic journey through the porn industry. Perfectly cast, and wonderfully directed by the extremely talented PT Anderson. Great 70’s soundtrack. The Godfather Part II – speaks for itself. De Niro, Pacino, Duvall, Diane Keaton, John Cazale and Ford Coppola make compelling viewing. On a different day would have probably got in, but I just don’t know it well enough yet. Pulp Fiction – a modern masterpiece, and Tarantino’s best work. The dialogue is hilarious and witty, the acting is great. Fantastic soundtrack. Go! – What I consider to be one of the hippest, funniest movies of the last 3 years, the plot is very intelligent and the characters addictive. The Last of the Mohicans – I was really annoyed to leave this out. Darren Day puts in one of my favourite screen performances and Mann directs with typical flair. Stand By Me – the best rites of passage movie, with a marvelous young cast and a great soundtrack. The Graduate – Hoffman is simply outstan
ding in this funny and original tale of a young man reaching adulthood. Contender for the best soundtrack ever. Rocky IV – my personal choice, probably wouldn’t be on most critics’ lists! I find it inspirational, although at times extremely corny and often farcical. Taxi Driver – revolutionary and very raw, De Niro and Scorsese again in a film that will always be known as one of the best ever. The Shawshank Redemption – many people’s favourite, the great acting and emotional content makes this one of the most watchable movies in recent times. The Shining – Kubrick genius, very scary with great performances North by Northwest – an American classic, both fun and loveable Full Metal Jacket - another Kubrick classic, both disturbing and compelling MOVIES THAT MIGHT HAVE BEEN IN – IF I HAD SEEN THEM! The Godfather Part 1 – I can’t believe I haven’t yet seen this…I’m sure it will get on my top ten though. Seven Samurai – the classic that spawned a classic On the Waterfront Dr. Strangelove Midnight Cowboy I hope you have enjoyed reading my list, and that I haven’t bored you too much. Making a top ten list of anything is very hard…I know my favourite film, but after that to put the remaining 9 in order is very difficult. In many ways my ‘Nearly Made It’ list contains a lot more ‘great’ movies than my top ten…but top tens are a matter of personal preference. I had fun making my list; I hope you had fun reading it!
The Insider is a film about how one lone industry insider, Dr.Jeffrey Wigand, with the help of jounalist Lowell Bergamn, helped to expose the tobacco industry's greed and ruthlessness. Russel Crowe plays the informant, with Al Pacino as the journalist. I do not call Crowe 'the Insider' because the title of the film is not that obvious. Although at first Crowe plays the 'Insider' when reporting the tobacco barons' malpractice, later Pacino is the Insider when he stuggles to get Crowe's revelations broadcasted. This film is an excellent film, if you have the patience to keep with it. Michael Mann has eeked up the tension in an almost documentary style, giving us, as far as I know, a realistic interpretaion of the events (not too many filmatic liberties). Some of the shots he has created are also very beautiful, making good use of these two titans of cinema in them. Crowe and Pacino make a great double act, making this almost a buddy movie, but with balls. Each holds the screen on their own, and when together their screen presence is magnetic. Pacino gives a remarkably restrained performance as a man under pressure, and lets Crowe - also superb as the man who risks his whole world for the moral good - take control when together. But to all you Pacino-yelling fans out there: he DOES have his moments too. I should warn you: this movie can be VERY slow, but stick with it and you will be rewarded.
Probably one of THE best multiplayer games around, Golden Eye is the N64's flagship game. Whilst in single player mode you can have hours of fun playing Bond, James Bond and going undercover, this game really comes to life when you play multiplayer. The controls are fantastically simple, it only takes a while to learn them. What takes longer to learn is the skill and reactions to be a good player. The multiplayer game is fast and furios - a variety of different levels are supplied, and many different choices of weaponry and characters too. My favourite was pistols on stack, with Boris as my character (quick and small!). Up to 4 can play - this really does give a great battle - you can be sure that politics will come into who goes after who between friends! 1 vs 1 is not really as fun, as usually between two skilled players the first to kill ends up winning the match (because we play on license to kill). If you know the level well you can tell where your opponent will respawn after death. Ultimately, this is the game that must be played, the game that really sold the N64. It's great fun!
I am reviewing original tetris here, as I can't find it anywhere else. Basically, Tetris is probably the best game ever in terms of universal simplicity and addictiveness. You all know what it is, so there's no need to explain. It has been copied many times, but remains the classic. I first started playing when I was around 10, in the 80's. I played for a few years, then stopped for a few years. Time passed by...then I rediscovered it. How wrong I was to think that Gameboys were uncool...now I have the old-skool grey Gameboy back! Nostalgia... So now I've started playing again, and play with about 4 other guys from my college. Soon we are going to get another Gameboy in, and play link-up, but at the moment we are just trying to beat each other in solo. My record, if anyone cares, is 201 lines but I know I can beat that. One of my friends can supposedly do 250 lines, when he was in a trance-like state of tetris oneness...he never got close to it again :-) . I hear the world record is in the 290's. And now Tetris has been immortalised in the cult novel The Beach! Hehe, I could whip Richard and Keaty, they can only do a pitiful 170-odd...I can also do 360000 points. The cheat for tetris is to hold down and press start once on the menu - this will add ten levels to your starting level, so level 9 is actually 19. I can do 107 lines on level 19, and can get up to level 14 on Game B, high 5. If anyone can get level 15 high 5, then they are a Tetris god! Another worthwhile challenge for Tetris fans is to play level 9, high 0 and get all tetrises, 7 in a row - it's pretty easy though. I'd be interested to hear from anyone who can beat me, or just wants to chat about tetris...just leave a comment or email me!
The Weakest Link is a gameshow that involves 10 people answering questions to earn money. After each of the 9 rounds they can vote someone out - the weakest link. The remaining contestant takes all the winnings. Here are my pros and cons to this hidden gem: Pros - good questions, with a wide variety of topics - ruthless - Anne Robinson, host, dispatches with each contestant: you ARE the weakest link. Goodbye. - clever, original format, a little like the Big Brother voting system - seems to have found a cult student following, just like Countdown Cons - pityful sums of money! A max of £10000, but mostly never goes above £3000. BBC2 have to make this show bigger - Anne Robinson gets annoying sometimes, especially if she's on 5 times a week - format gets boring and familiar after a few weeks of watching the show - idiotic contestants, who are so incompetant that they will almost never get the max of £1000 in a round (a bit like the situation on Who wants to be a Millionaire). Not helped by strategic voting, where the STRONGEST link is voted out by others to avoid later competition But overall definitely worth a look - a good family gameshow.
Well, I must say now that I am a huge Woo fan. And while this movie is not particularly good and doesn't help cruch the theory that Woo's best Hong Kong days are behind him, at least its commercial success will open up Hollywood doors for him. The first M:I was dubbed Mission:Incomprehensible. Now M:I2 is Mission:Implausible. Basically, the plot is stupid, sooo many unlikely events and some absolutely terrible script writing. But as a pure action flick (and not an M:I espionage), Woo saved it. The opening rock-climbing sequence is a gem. And some of the later chases/fights - though idiotic - are also well-handled, though nowhere near Woo's best. So, if you like just eye candy and don't want to think too hard, go see it. The theme tune sounded good at first (Limp Bizkit) and then was ruined as it slipped out of electronica and into thrash rock. I was also a bit disappointed at how many 'Wooisms' the director uses - surely he could go a little easy on the slo-mo and white doves once in a while? I sincerely hope Woo doesn't become a cliched has-been. I suspect he will go on to make great films, as well as eing successful in Hollywood. If they could get him and Chow Yun-Fat together again, then it would be a great film.
Blue SQ was the first online betting company (indeed the first betting company) than I partonized - it has always been good to me. The weekend coupons for the football - the Brit gambler's mainstay - are easy to use and vry well spread-out. The other sporting bets are also well informed and have a large variety. In addition, Blue SQ offers kooky bets, such as the celebrities in football crowds being televised, etc. I remeber once there was 3/1 odds of Tyson knocking down Julian Francis earlier in the year. I only put on £5 on this certainty as I thought there was a catch! Wasted opportunity... Also, a mention must go to the customer service, where the reps are friendly, courteous and quick. All in all, a great company, deserves its reputation as one of the best online betting sites.
Google is the best search engine because it's only purpose is to help you find what you need. No banners, little or no ads, and a massive links library. Google links to almost every page on the net, in a blindingly quick amount of time, and the magical seach engine lists links in order of its occurance on the net. This means that you get accurate results on the words you are trying to find. Finding what you want, where you want: the genii at google have made this possible.