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Considering this is supposed to be an introduction to the Chinese zodiac, it is very detailed, easy to understand and a joy to read. Each sign has twenty pages dedicated to it and the book is full of tables, charts and illustrations, all in full colour. Colour-coded chapters also make browsing through the book that much easier. Its compact size (slighty larger than a deck of playing cards) means you can carry this book around with you and fascinate your friends and family with insights into their character and life in general. A superb introduction to the Chinese zodiac at an excellent price.
Rubik's Cube Classic
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The Rubik's Cube is a classic puzzle for good reason. Endless hours of fun as you attempt to solve the Cube; twisting it one way and then another, over and over again. The Rubik's Cube has stood the test of time and remains highly popular today, as it was in it's heyday. To those reviewers who have stated that the Cube is "frustrating" and a "waste of time", may I respectfully suggest that you are missing the point entirely. The Rubik's Cube is a puzzle. Puzzles are supposed to be a challenge. It if was easily solved, it would cease to be a puzzle and become an idle curiousity. A simple toy. If you put your mind to it, as I have done, the Rubik's Cube is solvable. I have learnt to solve it; the first time you make that final twist and the Cube falls into place, each colour in its place, is a great feeling. Invest the time into learning to solve this great puzzle and you will be the envy of all around you! A great party trick and unreservedly recommended. I am now working on solving the Rubik's Revenge Cube (4x4x4).... :o)
Switch Easy Case For iPod Nano (Black Amber)
The Switch Easy was on my short list of cases and I'm glad I decided to go for it in the end. This is possibly the best case on the market for the new 3rd generation iPod Nano. I had no problems whatsoever inserting my Nano into the case; it fits perfectly with no play at all once inside the case. I did not bother with the click wheel protector as my Nano spends most of its time docked in my Intempo RDi speaker dock. Incidentally, the Nano can be docked in the RDi without removing it from the case - perfect! Which is just as well because the Nano is very difficult to remove from the case once it has been inserted. I also passed on the back protector as I see little point in this as the Nano is completely encased, anyway. The Switch Easy comes with a variety of accessories, which is always nice even if I won't be using them all.
The case looks very stylish indeed and I am confident it will do its job and protect my Nano from all but the most severe of damage. It adds virtually nothing to the overall dimensions of the Nano, which is great. In fact, some people have commented that they didn't even know my Nano was in a case! It really is that good. I had to turn the screen brightness up to 90% to make up for the slight darkness from the built-in screen protector, however, but this is not an issue for me as my Nano is usually on charge in the RDi.
I would imagine the case will end up with scratches if carried in a pocket or bag; the included cloth will get rid of minor surface scratches and greasy fingerprints but won't help with deeper scratches, so bear this in mind before throwing it in with your keys!
Overall, I would highly recommend this case, especially at £13 which is the best online price I have seen. (Other websites sell this case for about £18). Snap it up while you still can!
Thelma And Louise: Special Edition
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Two women decide to hit the road, leaving their mundane lives and crackpot, controlling husbands behind (hilarious performance from Christopher McDonald as Thelma's husband). After Louise shoots and kills a potential rapist, they go on the run from the police. As fugitives, they discover new depths to their friendship and have time to reflect on what course of action to take. Do they give themselves up? Do they escape the law? Thelma and Louise is a great road movie which will have the feminists in particular cheering on our heroines. Yet another superb film from Ridley Scott that I would highly recommend.
Reservoir Dogs - Special Edition (2 Discs)
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For me, Reservoir Dogs (RD) was one big, thrilling ride from beginning to end.Tarantino's masterpiece tells the tale of a bungled heist and the repercussions for our group of colour-coded criminals. Great script, superb performances and an opening scene (discussion on tipping) that is just pure genius. Can't ask for much more than that. Be warned, though, as RD is very violent and bloody. Buy the 2 Disc Special Edition for the same price as the regular edition.
The Blair Witch Project
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The Blair Witch Project (TBWP) reminds me a lot of Marmite - you either love it or you hate it. I am of the former category (although I'm not overly fond of Marmite....)Three film students set out to make a film on a local urban legend, the Blair Witch. However, they manage to get themselves hopelessly lost in the woods and are never seen again. One year later, their tape is found. What it shows is a truly terrifying series of events that occurred in the woods on that fateful outing.TBWP was made on a comparatively miniscule budget and it has an amateur feel to it, with the handheld camera and jerky movements throughout. This serves to reinforce the fact that the three youths were just film students out to make a scary documentary. And TBWP is really quite scary in parts; the night scene where they are lost in the middle of nowhere, huddled together in a tent, is particularly frightening. Especially when they begin to hear the laughter of children....Opinion on TBWP is divided and I can understand why some people will take an instant dislike to this film. But I think it tackles fairly unoriginal subject matter in a highly original and gripping way. The result is a terrifying movie that will have you hiding behind a cushion all the way to the heart stopping finale. Highly recommended.
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Al Pacino is on top form as Tony Montana in this violent epic which follows Montana's humble beginnings as a Cuban immigrant in America, to his gun toting drug empire and violent finale. A strong supporting cast and fine performances all round with a stand out performance from Steven Bauer, Scarface is a superb film which doesn't pull any punches in portraying the world of the drug lord in 80s Miami. And did I mention the violence? The chainsaw scene is brutal and will make the strongest stomach turn.At this price (£2.99), you would have to be mad to pass up the chance to own this classic on DVD. And for an extra £2, you can get the 2 Disc Special Edition, which I recommend.
An American Werewolf In London (21st Anniversary Edition.)
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An American Werewolf In London (AAWIL) is a horror/comedy about two young Americans (David Naughton and Griffin Dunne) on a tour of England who have the misfortune of crossing paths with a werewolf. One of them is killed while the other is badly mauled but survives. This starts off a chain of events which is altogether scary, funny and romantic, all at once. The English country pub scenes, while suitably ominous, contain such stereotypical characters that it virtually demands the actors ham it up to the extreme. And ham it up they do, with Brian Glover in particular doing a sterling job. Jenny Agutter is cute and very sexy in her role as Nurse Alex Price, as she nurses David (Naughton) back to health - she goes above and beyond the call of duty in this department and looks very good doing it, too.AAWIL is a horror classic and deserves to have a place in your DVD collection. The scene where David changes into a werewolf is a movie classic for good reason. Make-up and special effects are superb. A very entertaining film - I would highly recommend AAWIL.
Blade Runner: The Director's Cut
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Blade Runner (BR) is a film that has been described as being "style over substance" in the past. This is simply not so and represents a misguided, short-sighted view of this classic movie. BR is a multi-layered film that reveals a little more of the bigger, complex picture after each viewing. The plot centres around the protagonist, Rick Deckard, who as a Blade Runner is given the seemingly straightforward task of locating and "retiring" several renegade androids - Replicants - who are on the run. The visuals are undeniably stunning but supplemented with a believable, intriguing and emotional plot. Most of the main characters in BR have been well fleshed out (with the intentional exception of Gaff), leaving the viewer with a real sense of affinity to their trials and tribulations, specifically to the plight of the Replicants. Fine performances all round from a strong cast, especially Rutger Hauer. Considering BR was made 25 years ago, if has hardly dated at all which is more than can be said for some of its far lesser imitations. Vangelis's soundtrack is simply stunning and ranges from the hauntingly beautiful "Rachel's Song" to the sheer brilliance of "BR End Titles". BR is my favourite film and never ceases to amaze me every time I watch it. It is awe-inspiring, packs an emotional punch and will leave you thinking long after reaching for the eject button - until the next viewing reveals yet another piece of the jigsaw....Unreservedly recommended, BR will have pride of place in my DVD collection for many years to come. (Director's Cut features the omission of Deckard's voiceover and a different ending).