5ive girls Review and Opinion

2017/11/02

5ive Girls (2006)
Director: Warren P. Sonoda

review by Gary McMahon

Everything about the absurdly titled 5ive Girls is ordinary: acting, direction, script, tone, and intent. The film comes across like a tame Sci-Fi Channel cocktail of The Craft meets The Exorcist, all aimed at the teen market, but lacking any kind of style or integrity

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5ive girls Review and Opinion

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Frightening Review and Opinion

2018/12/30

The Frightening (2001)
Director: David DeCoteau

review by Trent Walters

Pan across a California beach somewhere near Hollywood...

Writer [dripping wet with surfboard in hand]:
   Dudes! You're that famous producer/director pair of Hollywood B movies.

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Frightening Review and Opinion

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Fallen angels Review and Opinion

2017/05/08

Fallen Angels (2003)
Director: Ian David Diaz

review by Steve Anderson

Every time Jeff Fahey stars in a cheap, poorly done piece of direct-to-video slop, an angel gets its wings. Right now, by my count, there are about three angels in heaven still taking the bus to work.

And you can tell right off that this one's going to be a doozy. We kick it

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Fallen angels Review and Opinion

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Little people by tom holt Review and Opinion

2018/09/29

Little People
Tom Holt
Orbit paperback £6.99

review by Duncan Lawie

Little People is narrated by Mike Higgins, who first saw an elf at the bottom of the garden when he was eight. The strength of his stepfather's abhorrence makes him sure that what he saw was both real and unmentionable. Combined with his stepfather's eternal disapproval and

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Little people by tom holt Review and Opinion

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Harry potter Review and Opinion

2018/12/05

Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone (2001)
(aka: Harry Potter And The Sorcerer's Stone)
Director: Chris Columbus

review by Gary Couzens

After many millions of books sold worldwide, making J.K. Rowling the richest woman in Britain (even more than Her Majesty), her creations now appear on the big screen. There will be seven novels, of which four

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Harry potter Review and Opinion

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X2 Review and Opinion

2017/12/14

X2 (2003)
Director: Bryan Singer

review by Debbie Moon

The Mutant Registration Act has been defeated, the militant Magneto is safely in jail, but humanity's hatred and fear of those born different is still growing. When an assassin with extraordinary powers attacks the President, Colonel Stryker is given free rein to deal with the 'mutant problem'. His

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X2 Review and Opinion

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Smallville Review and Opinion

2018/04/08

Smallville (2001)
Creators: Alfred Gough and Miles Millar

review by Daniel G. Jennings

Basically, this show is an attempt to update the classic 1950s, 1960s and 1970s Superboy comics which chronicled Clark Kent's high school years in Kansas, as a modern angst filled teen show like Buffy the Vampire

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Smallville Review and Opinion

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Dead in the water Review and Opinion

2019/03/23

Dead In The Water (2002)
Writer and director: Merlin Ward

review by Paul Higson

A number of British horror films are slipping out onto video left to sit there as the legion of the brainwashed pick up one of the rack load of copies of Seabiscuit, or the latest Oscar nominated flicker instead, the number of copies saying it all for them. Many of

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Dead in the water Review and Opinion

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Bridge to terabithia Review and Opinion

2016/07/14

Bridge To Terabithia (2006)
Director: Gabor Csupo

review by Barbara Davies

Life is hard for country boy Jess Aarons (Josh Hutcherson). At school he's the target of bullies, and his home life isn't a walk in the park. Jess' parents are stressed out just trying to put food on the table, and with four sisters he often feels left out. Drawing is his one

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Bridge to terabithia Review and Opinion

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Hollow Review and Opinion

2017/03/11

The Hollow (2004)
Director: Kyle Newman

review by Alasdair Stuart

When a film opens with Stacy Keach taking an axe to the grave of Washington Irving you know you're in for a ride. The Hollow is a real guilty pleasure, packed full of recognisable faces, and has a script that is pure, hands off the wheel, pulp horror fun.

Ian Cranston (Kevin

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Hollow Review and Opinion

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Suspiria Review and Opinion

2018/02/25

Suspiria (1977)
Director: Dario Argento

review by James Starkey

Suspiria is one of the greatest horror movies ever made. It is by no means Dario's best however - such is the standing of the great man. By 1976 the director wished a change of emphasis from the murder mystery genre that he had so mastered. What followed was a truly terrifying gothic

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Suspiria Review and Opinion

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Covenant Review and Opinion

2017/07/28

The Covenant (2006)
Director: Renny Harlin

review by Ian Shutter

A quartet of students at the Spenser Academy, a boarding school in New England, are known locally as "the sons of Ipswich," because they are descendents of Massachusetts' witches, possessing secret magic powers that 'ascend' to full maturity at the age of 18. Using their gifts means the

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Covenant Review and Opinion

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Series 7 the contenders Review and Opinion

2018/04/30

Series 7: The Contenders (2000)
Director: Daniel Minahan

review by Ellen Cheshire

The Running Man meets Survivor in Minahan's hip take on the current phenomenon of reality television programmes - Series 7: The Contenders.
   'The Contenders', thankfully a fictional reality game show, is now in series seven. At the beginning of

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Series 7 the contenders Review and Opinion

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Doctor who Review and Opinion

2019/02/25

Doctor Who: An Unearthly Child (1963)
Director: Waris Hussein

review by Jeff Young

It's a weird experience watching this - the first ever appearance of the most famous British SF icon. William Hartnell's original interpretation of the immortal character is a decidedly odd combination of (other?) worldliness and brittle pomposity, as he virtually kidnaps

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Doctor who Review and Opinion

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Harry potter and the chamber of secrets Review and Opinion

2017/03/29

Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets (2002)
Director: Chris Columbus

review by Amy Harlib

The film adaptation of the second book (of a projected seven), in J.K. Rowling's phenomenally popular and successful fantasy series will no doubt be a hit equal to if not surpassing its predecessor - in no small measure due to the author's close involvement supervising

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Harry potter and the chamber of secrets Review and Opinion

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Abnormal beauty Review and Opinion

2017/10/29

Ab-Normal Beauty (2004)
Writer and director: Oxide Pang

review by Paul Higson

The Pang brothers made an impression with their action film Nowhere To Hide and then again with the horror film The Eye, the latter partly funded with UK money. The two films credibly

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Abnormal beauty Review and Opinion

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Earthlings Review and Opinion

2017/05/26

Earthlings: Ugly Bags Of Mostly Water (2005)
Director: Alexandre O. Philippe

review by Alasdair Stuart

My final year at secondary school is not one I remember fondly. As well as the usual pressures of exams, the final choice of university and the horrors of adolescence I also had to deal with facing the reality of leaving the island I grew up on, the

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Earthlings Review and Opinion

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Donnie darko Review and Opinion

2019/03/09

Donnie Darko (2001)
Director: Richard Kelley

review by Trent Walters

Juggling either illusion-reality or time-paradoxes by themselves can get tricky. Most works concern themselves with one or the other. Donnie Darko attempts to master both, and in the attempt becomes one of the most magnificent and moving failures among the lesser pictures that

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Donnie darko Review and Opinion

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Doctor who time and relative Review and Opinion

2018/02/07

Doctor Who: Time And Relative
Kim Newman
Telos hardcover £25

review by Christopher Geary

Spring 1963. The mysterious Doctor and his teenage granddaughter, Susan Foreman, are in London where Susan unhappily attends Coal Hill School. While struggling to cope with boring lessons, playground bullies

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Doctor who time and relative Review and Opinion

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Third black book of horror Review and Opinion

2016/05/04

The Third Black Book Of Horror
editor: Charles Black
Mortbury paperback £7.50

review by Mario Guslandi

Charles Black, the man who single-handed is re-launching the horror anthology in the UK (and whom some critics are already calling 'the new Herbert Van Thal'), presents us with

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Third black book of horror Review and Opinion

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Stuart little 2 Review and Opinion

2018/03/04

Stuart Little 2 (2002)
Director: Rob Minkoff

review by Gary Couzens

Stuart Little was one of the better summer hits of 1999. Based on a book by E.B. White, it showed how a young mouse, Stuart (a digital creation voiced by Michael J. Fox), was adopted into New York's Little family (parents Geena Davis and Hugh Laurie, older 'brother' Jonathan Lipnicki

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Stuart little 2 Review and Opinion

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Sky is not the limit Review and Opinion

2018/04/12

The Sky Is Not The Limit: Adventures Of An Urban Astrophysicist
Neil de Grasse Tyson
Prometheus paperback $18

review by Amy Harlib

The youngest ever Director of the famous Hayden Planetarium in New York City, astrophysicist Neil de Grasse Tyson (b. 1958), author of numerous academic papers and several books in his field for intelligent laypersons,

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Sky is not the limit Review and Opinion

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Sangre enterna Review and Opinion

2016/09/21

Sangre Eterna (2002)
Director: Jorge Olguin

review by Paul Higson

The trick to attention grabbing in film today is to go the postmodern route. It is not important whether a film is good or bad, a successful game or a failed experiment, the willingness to examine the medium or genre and reconfigure it with a nascent knowingness will give a young filmmaker

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Sangre enterna Review and Opinion

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Originals by dave gibbons Review and Opinion

2015/08/27

The Originals
Dave Gibbons
Vertigo / Titan graphic novel £17.99

review by Steve Aylett

For some reason I expected this to be a sort of Invisibles take-off, but in fact it's an alternative-universe Mod story in which the 'Originals' gang of the title ride around on hover-bikes instead of Vespas. There are no surprises in the story itself, a coming

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Originals by dave gibbons Review and Opinion

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Book programme: dennis wheatley Review and Opinion

2017/05/29

The Book Programme: Dennis Wheatley
- A Letter To Posterity (2005)

review by Andrew Darlington

As a human being, Dennis Wheatley was a fake. A fluent chancer, a self-promoting story spinner in slicked-back hair and a foppishly camp, velvet bow tie... and also an advocate of a hideous and repellent elitism. Although now neglected and seldom read

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Book programme: dennis wheatley Review and Opinion

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Valentine Review and Opinion

2018/01/11

Valentine (2001)
Director: Jamie Blanks

review by Ellen Cheshire   [SPOILER ALERT!]

Stalk 'n' slash has been a genre staple since its inception in the 1970s. The rules are simple: the killer, usually male, has had a traumatic past experience, which he re-enacts within the narrative. The victims are

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Valentine Review and Opinion

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All star superman Review and Opinion

2016/04/14

All Star Superman vol.1
Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely
DC Comics / Titan hardcover $19.95 / £11.99

review by Patrick Hudson

As the very first superhero, Superman defined the entire genre. The whole over-familiar superhero routine - the secret identity, the love triangle with his alter ego, the pure-hearted motivations and the underwear pervert fashion

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All star superman Review and Opinion

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Harry potter and the sorcerer's stone Review and Opinion

2017/03/30

Harry Potter And The Sorcerer's Stone (2001)
Director: Chris Columbus

review by Amy Harlib

I may be one of the few aficionados of the SF and fantasy genre yet to read UK writer J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter books. It's just because the projected series spans seven volumes of which four have been published (and gracing my shelves), awaiting my idiosyncratic

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Harry potter and the sorcerer

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Angel season one Review and Opinion

2019/07/11

Angel Season One (1999)
Created by Joss Whedon and David Greenwalt

review by Christopher Geary

This is the first spin-off series from Whedon's astonishingly successful TV show, Buffy, The Vampire Slayer. It stars David Boreanaz as the titular hero, a vampire cursed with a soul - the result of

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Angel season one Review and Opinion

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Harry potter and the goblet of fire Review and Opinion

2017/03/31

Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire (2005)
Director: Mike Newell

review by Jonathan McCalmont

The Goblet Of Fire is the fourth Harry Potter film and, given the continuing success of the books and the phenomenal opening weekend the film had in the US, it's very unlikely to be the last. The film starts with Harry and friends visiting the

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Harry potter and the goblet of fire Review and Opinion

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Dungeons and dragons Review and Opinion

2019/02/20

Dungeons & Dragons (1999)
Director: Courtney Solomon

review by Trent Walters

It's always good to find a movie to base your rating system on. A five-star flick would be Heavenly Creatures, while Dungeons & Dragons sets the one-star standard. The director appears to have hired from all the best high school drama queens and drag queens. One

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Dungeons and dragons Review and Opinion

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Spider: king of crooks Review and Opinion

2015/06/22

The Spider: King Of Crooks
Jerry Siegel, Ted Cowan, and Reg Bunn
Titan hardcover £14.99 / $19.95

review by Andrew Darlington

For this 'Spider', there are no Peter Parker alter ego complications. No existential angst, no motivational crisis-moments of indecision. No other identity, no other life - in fact, there's never a time when he's not in costume

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Spider: king of crooks Review and Opinion

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Bill and ted's excellent adventure Review and Opinion

2019/06/10

Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989)
Director: Stephen Herek

review by Jeff Young

Possibly inspired by the likes of Time Bandits, Back To The Future, and Doctor Who, this SF comedy about two young American time travellers is inconsistent, but has several witty lines and amusing

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Bill and ted

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Mr and mrs smith Review and Opinion

2016/12/03

Mr & Mrs Smith (2005)
Director: Doug Liman

review by Christopher Geary

Essentially a combo rehash of the Kathleen Turner movies, Prizzi's Honour (1985), War Of The Roses (1989), and Undercover Blues (1993), this briskly paced comedy-adventure about a couple of assassins that receive secret orders to kill one another, also delivers

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Mr and mrs smith Review and Opinion

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Court of the midnight king Review and Opinion

2019/04/19

The Court Of The Midnight King
Freda Warrington
Pocket paperback £7.99

review by Patrick Hudson

This book retells the story of the Wars of the Roses (the English wars of succession between 1432 and 1485, not the film with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner) with a touch of added mysticism, in the style of Marion Zimmer Bradley's Mists Of Avalon

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Hole Review and Opinion

2017/03/12

The Hole (2001)
Director: Nick Hamm

review by Richard Bowden

According to the account of the only survivor, four English students were persuaded to spend a few days in a disused bunker. When a promised rescue failed to materialise, panic and violence set in. Meanwhile a dark plan becomes evident.

There's a vacuum in The Hole which is a

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Hole Review and Opinion

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Crimson rivers Review and Opinion

2017/07/21

The Crimson Rivers (2000)
Director: Mathieu Kassovitz

review by Jonathan McCalmont

Interestingly for a film about eugenics, the production of this film has more than a whiff of genetic engineering about it. Imagine a collection of beret-wearing scientists, carefully selecting talent in order to construct a film guaranteed to be a commercial success outside

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Crimson rivers Review and Opinion

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Quiet war by paul mcauley Review and Opinion

2015/08/05

The Quiet War
Paul McAuley
Gollancz hardcover £18.99

review by Duncan Lawie

[W]e are disadvantaged because we cannot stoop to the level of our opponents by spreading false counter rumours. We must cleave to the truth because otherwise we will become like our enemies, and traduce our own cause. At the same

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Quiet war by paul mcauley Review and Opinion

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Elastic book of numbers Review and Opinion

2016/01/26

The Elastic Book Of Numbers
edited by Allen Ashley
Elastic paperback £6

review by Debbie Moon

As anyone who's tried to use a credit card recently knows, numbers are increasingly dominating our lives. This collection of 21 stories takes this idea to its logical (and illogical) conclusions, with tales of ordinary people who find their lives unravelling

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Elastic book of numbers Review and Opinion

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Dark water Review and Opinion

2019/03/30

Dark Water (2002)
Director: Hideo Nakata

review by Tom Matic

The latest supernatural thriller from Hideo Nakata director of the Ring trilogy, Dark Water (aka: Honogurai mizu no soko kara) had a particular resonance for me. I watched it not long after I moved into a new flat, and got

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Dark water Review and Opinion

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Final destination Review and Opinion

2019/01/14

Final Destination (1999)
Director: James Wong

review by Jeff Young

Remember all those weirdly elaborate death scenes from classic horror movies like The Omen? Well, they're back to haunt us again in this witty supernatural thriller about predestination but, as the malaise of millennial anxieties fades now, the full impact of this efficient little

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Final destination Review and Opinion

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Re-animator Review and Opinion

2018/06/07

Re-Animator (1985)
Director: Stuart Gordon

review by Jeff Young

"You once did me a favour by letting me into your medical school... Welcome back to life!" This is classic low-budget comedy horror with tongue-in-cheek perversity and one of the great splatter finales, based on stories by H.P. Lovecraft.
   Herbert West (Jeffrey Combs, lately a malicious

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Re-animator Review and Opinion

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Time machine Review and Opinion

2018/02/09

The Time Machine (2002)
Directors: Simon Wells (and Gore Verbinski)

review by Gary Couzens

First published in 1895, H.G. Wells' novella is one of the founding texts of modern science fiction. A film version was inevitable once special effects were up to the task - indeed, those in George Pal's 1960 version won an Oscar. That 1960 version became a favourite

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Time machine Review and Opinion

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Serpent's shadow Review and Opinion

2018/04/29

The Serpent's Shadow
Mercedes Lackey
DAW paperback USA $6.95 / UK £6.99

review by Amy Harlib

The prolific and popular American fantasy writer, Mercedes Lackey, in a recent, widely available offering, presents another novel length re-telling of a familiar fairy tale (in the manner of The Firebird, The Black Swan and The Fire Rose

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Serpent

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J.s.a. mixed signals Review and Opinion

2015/11/04

JSA: Mixed Signals
Geoff Johns, and others
DC Comics / Titan paperback £8.99

review by J.C. Hartley

The Justice Society of America was formed in 1940 to lick Hitler. They were created by writer Gardner Fox who, with Bill Finger, was responsible for everything about Batman that Bob Kane took the credit for, along with DC editor Sheldon Mayer.

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J.s.a. mixed signals Review and Opinion

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Eden lake Review and Opinion

2017/05/25

Eden Lake (2008)
Writer and director: James Watkins

review by Jonathan McCalmont

In the 2009 edition of the Time Out Film Guide, noted film critic Jonathan Rosenbaum argues that going to the cinema is no longer an adult activity, the large screens are dominated by costumed vigilantes, the smaller screens by CGIed animals, and the entire comedy

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Eden lake Review and Opinion

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Harry potter and the prisoner of azkaban Review and Opinion

2017/03/28

Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban (2004)
Director: Alfonso Cuaron

review by Amy Harlib

The first two film versions of J.K. Rowling's phenomenally popular fantasy novels concerning the education of a young British wizard were also deservedly huge successes. The third cinematic outing in this series, Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban

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Harry potter and the prisoner of azkaban Review and Opinion

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Last horror movie Review and Opinion

2018/10/09

The Last Horror Movie (2003)
Director: Julian Richards

review by Paul Higson

At the 2003 Festival of Fantastic Films four new British feature films were previewed, Mitchell Morgan and Jon Kirby's Requiem, Tony Luke's Dominator (which picked up best animated feature film), Julian Richards' The Last Horror Movie and Hadi Hajaig's

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Last horror movie Review and Opinion

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Spider-man Review and Opinion

2018/03/25

Spider-Man (2002)
Director: Sam Raimi

review by Gary Couzens

There's one simple reason why Spider-Man has a special place in comics fans' hearts. Unlike Superman, say, who has to disguise himself as bumbling Clark Kent, Spider-Man begins as every-nerd before becoming a superbeing... a journey from identification to wish-fulfilment

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Spider-man Review and Opinion

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They are among us Review and Opinion

2016/07/18

They Are Among Us (2003)
Director: Jeffrey Obrow

review by Alasdair Stuart

Ever since Kevin McCarthy ran down the middle of a motorway yelling "They're here! You're next! You're next!" at the end of Invasion Of The Body Snatchers, Hollywood has been fascinated

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They are among us Review and Opinion

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