Science Fiction and Fantasy Film and TV Reviews by Title: A.

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A Problem with Fear
01/03/2004. Mark sits down for this latest SF movie and discovers a quirky science fiction film with some odd approaches, including a man-made 'fear storm'.

A Rolling Ball Gathers no Plaudits
01/08/2002. Who's in the mood to play games with 'Rollerball', when this movie is a mindless, insipid and excitable sports fantasy that rolls over the cinematic senses, leaving you feeling incomplete? Not us, that's for sure. Not Frank Ochieng either ... read his review here!

A Scanner Darkly (Mark's Take)
01/08/2006. Richard Linklater adapts one of Philip K. Dick's less cinematic novels into a rotoscoped, animated film. The approach is creative, says Mark, but it still does not overcome the problems of bringing such a contemplative novel to the screen. This becomes just a bland paranoia melodrama set in a very contemporary drug culture. An interesting effort, but it does not work as a film.

A Sound Of Thunder (Mark's Take)
01/10/2005. Based on a famous story by Ray Bradbury, this film will be a real disappointment for its lack of logic and even the misunderstanding of the original story. As an action film without the logic it is only fair. Peter Hyams is good at making sci-fi, but is not very good with science fiction.

A Thousand Words (Frank's take)
01/04/2012. Veteran funnyman Eddie Murphy continues to partake in these woeful assembly line comedies that predictably register with a big thud. Murphy’s latest yuck-it-up monstrosity—A Thousand Words—certainly will leave one hopelessly speechless. Convincingly unoriginal, desperate, lazy and thoroughly insipid, A Thousand Words is utterly painful in every syllable.

A Time of Endings: Godzilla
01/07/2005. With two other science fiction franchises coming to an end, much less notice is being given to a third important series. Currently being released in this country is Godzilla: Final Wars. I have had people look at me strangely when I have said that this is an important science fiction series and lament its passing.

A.I.: Artificial Intelligence
01/10/2002. Pub: Warner Brothers S021330. 140 minutes. Price: £10.99 (UK) - may vary so shop around. Stars: Haley Joel Osment, Jude Law, Frances O'Connor, Brendan Gleeson and William Hurt.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Slayer (Frank's take)
01/07/2012. There was certainly an opportunity missed when conceiving the concocted irreverence behind the historical horror actioner Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Slayer. Naturally the handlers behind his haunting hogwash wanted to tap into an offbeat joke about showcasing the 16th American president of the United States kicking some walking undead blood-sucking butt.

Ace Of Wands
01/12/2008. pub: Network 7952210. 4 DVDs 9 stories 500 minutes plus extras. Price: £10.00 (UK) if you know where to look. stars: Michael Mackenzie, Roy Holder, Petra Markham, Donald Layne-Smith and Fred Owl.

Adam Resurrected (Mark's take)
01/01/2009. This, says Mark, is a bizarre surreal fantasy involving a man with psychic powers, a German Holocaust death camp, and people who are degraded to live and act like dogs. How does all that fit together? I vote for "not very well." Jeff Goldblum's performance is magnetic, but he has problems with the accent. Paul Schrader directs Noah Stollman's adaptation of Yoram Kaniuk's novel.

Aeon Flux: Frank's Take
01/01/2006. The standby decision not to screen Aeon Flux for critics may have been justified, decides Frank. After all, why would Paramount Pictures risk the uneasy notion of having sceptical movie reviewers bad-mouth their sci-fi jolting gibberish which could hurt the box office potential of seeing desirable Charlize Theron bend like a rubber pretzel in a tight-fitting black outfit?

Agent Cody Banks
01/05/2003. So the likable Malcolm in the Middle pint-sized TV star Frankie Muniz is at it again on the big screen? This time, the movie handlers are trying to package him as a junior James Bond for the kiddie crowd.

Airwolf Season One DVD boxset
01/07/2006. DVD. Universal Playback 8238304. 564 minutes 13 episodes no extras. Price: £28.99 but shop around cos I got mine for £17.89 (UK). Stars: Jan-Michael Vincent, Ernest Borgnine, Alex Cord and Deborah Pratt.

Airwolf Season Three DVD boxset
02/08/2008. Region 2 DVD: pub: Universal 824 948 3. 6 DVDs 16 hours 50 minutes 22 episodes with no extras. Price: £15.98 (UK) if you know where to look). stars: Jan-Michael Vincent, Ernest Borgnine, Jean Bruce Scott and Alex Cord.

Airwolf Season Two DVD boxset
01/06/2007. region 2 DVD. pub: Universal Playback DVD 824-715 3-11. 1015 minutes 22 episodes and no extras. Price: £ 23.98 (UK) if you know where to look). stars: Jan-Michael Vincent, Ernest Borgnine, Jean Scott Bruce and Alex Cord.

Airwolf: The Classic Collection Boxset 1
01/10/2002. Pub: Universal Playback 9062983. 6hr 54 minute 3 VHS videos. Price: £19.99 (UK). Stars: Jan-Michael Vincent, Jean Bruce Scott, Alex Cord and Ernest Borgnine.

Alexander: Mark's Take
01/01/2005. Alexander is a little long and at times slow, but not unrewarding as a movie for history buffs. Much of the film just does not work, but parts are very impressive. A good cinematic biography of this great conqueror is nearly impossible. I would rather be bored learning about the history of Alexander the Great than enthralled by the exploits of Spider Man. Your mileage may vary.

Alias Season 1 music composed by Michael Giacchino
01/04/2005. CD: Touchstone Television Productions Varese Sarabande VSD-6521. Price: £12.99 to £8.99 (UK) so shop around for the best price.

Alien 2 On Earth
01/05/2011. region 2 DVD: pub: Midnight Legacy B004UOW4TC. 92 minute film with a couple extras. Price: GBP14.99 (UK)) stars: Belinda Mayne and Mark Bodin.

Alien Abduction (Geoff's take)
01/07/2005. DVD: The Asylum SCI-FI 1676. 95 minutes. Price: $17.99 (US). director: Eric Rorsberg. Stars: Megan Lee Ethridge, Griff Feurstein, Melanie Porter, Patrick Thomassie and Jilon Ghai.

Alien Nation (Geoff's take)
01/06/2008. region 2 DVD: pub: 20th Century Fox F1-SGB 01585DVD. 86 minute film with extras. Price: £ 3.00 (UK) if you know where to look) . stars: James Caan, Mandy Patakin and Terrance Stamp.

Alien Nation: Ultimate Movie Collection
01/05/2008. Region One DVD: pub: 20th Century Fox 2251276. Price: $49.98 (US), $69.98 (CAN). 3 double-sided DVDs 447 minutes 5 * 90 minute films with extras)stars: Gary Graham, Eric Pierpoint, Michelle Scarabelli, Terry Treas, Lauren Woodland and Sean Six.

Alien Planet (Mark's Take)
01/12/2005. The Discovery Channel's special Alien Planet blurs the distinction between science and science fiction, but for good purpose. Alien Planet, based on Wayne Barlowe's book Expedition is a dramatisation of a plausible visit by mechanical probe Van Braun to the earth-like planet Darwin IV.

Alien Quadrilogy (Geoff's take)
01/03/2004. Pub: 20th Century Fox F1 25231 BGB. Price: varies from £70 to £54.99 (UK) - shop around for the best price.)

Alien Trespass (Frank's take)
01/05/2009. The tongue-in-cheek humour is thoroughly realised in the movie Alien Trespass, finds our Frank. It also has that bloke out of Will and Grace (Will, not Jack), and all the clichés of 1950's horror cinema are there - and, that is a good thing!

Alien Trespass (Geoff's take)
01/08/2009. Region 1 DVD: pub: Image Entertainment RKW6273DVD. 84 minute movie with lots of extras. Price: $ 27.98(US) and for those who use expensive Blu-Ray $35.98 (US). stars: Eric McCormack, Jenni Baird, Dan Lauria and Robert Patrick.

Alien Vs Predator: Two-Disc Extreme Edition
01/04/2005. DVD: 20th Century Fox FG-OCB 26681CDVD. 96 minutes. Price: Varies from £22 to £13 so shop around for the right price). Stars: Sanna Lathan, Raoul Bova, Lance Henriksen, Ewen Bremner. Director: Paul W.S. Anderson.

Alien vs. Predator: Frank's Take
01/10/2004. Director Paul W.S. Anderson serves up a meager monster mash spectacle that borders on the silly-minded and slimy by sizing up the terrorizing tag-team of creature feature cads Alien and the Predator in the obviously titled scarefest Alien vs. Predator.

All that glitters is not Gold Member
01/09/2002. Yeah ... baby! Are you ready to endure the same ol' exploits with the randy rogue Austin Powers? How about going on a permanent mission in an attempt to put the four-eyed goofball spy out of his misery ... please.

American Zombie: Mark's take
01/04/2008. This film is badly paced, but has a rewarding last half-hour if the viewer can wait it out. Grace Lee looks at the lives of zombies living in the Los Angeles area, examining them like any minority community. The film satirizes well-intentioned socially conscious documentaries, examining how zombies have been (or failed to be) integrated into the general population.

An American Haunting (Frank's Take)
01/06/2006. Writer-director Courtney Solomon's flimsy fright fable An American Haunting couldn't scare a lobbyist from a Washington D.C. politician's picnic, finds Frank. Maybe that's because Solomon's supernatural snoozer has all the meditative vibe of a lemon-minted cough drop.

Andromeda DVD Box Set A.2
01/10/2002. Pub: Kult-TV: KLT13102. 230 minute twin DVDs. Price: £19.99 - prices vary look around for the best deal. Stars: Kevin Sorbo, Lisa Ryder, Keith Hamilton Cobb, Brent Stait, Laura Bertram, Gordon Michael Woolvett and Lexa Doig.

Apocalypto (Mark's take)
01/01/2007. This is history with more than a little Grand Guignol, notes our Mark. At times the view of the ancient Mayan civilization is engaging and unique, but it in no way should it be thought to be historically accurate, in spite of director Mel Gibson's use of the original Mayan language. Conflating two periods of Mayan history several centuries apart, it is the story of an intended human sacrifice running for his life while chased by implacable Mayans. Mel Gibson needs a much better scriptwriter than Mel Gibson.

Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters (Frank's take)
01/05/2007. It's rather challenging in trying to determine the off-kilter appeal of the six-year presence of Cartoon Network's Aqua Teen Hunger Force, says Frank. Actually, it shouldn't be difficult to understand why a subversive animated series couldn't capture the twisted allure of selected audiences. After all, we're talking about an extremely wacky and contentious cartoon that owes its flippant foundation to the likes of proven stalwarts The Simpsons, Beavis and Butthead, South Park or any other unbalanced entry that dared to be unconventionally wisecracking in its seemingly innocuous skin.

Army Of The Dead
01/10/2010. region 2 DVD: pub: Kaleidoscope Home Entertainment KAL8088. 1 DVD 89 minute film. Price: GBP12.99 (UK)) stars: Ross Kelly and Stefani Marchesi.

Around the World in 80 Days - Frank's Take
01/08/2004. Poor Jules Verne must be spinning in his grave. Out of all the remakes that had been done regarding Verne’s whimsical classical story, director Frank 'The Wedding Singer' Coraci delivers a botched and banal affair of lackluster lunacy in his updated version of Around the World in 80 Days.

Arthur C. Clarke's Mysterious World
02/02/2008. DVD region 2: pub: Network B00112GCEY. 2 DVDs 325 minutes 13 * 25 minutes episodes. Price: £14.99 (UK).

Atlantis The Lost Empire - lost or found?
01/10/2001. While Shrek, still playing in theaters, mocks the old Disney traditions, Atlantis: The Lost Empire pays respectful homage to old Disney films while telling a story like H. Rider Haggard on steroids.

ATM (Frank's take)
01/05/2012. The USA-Canadian claustrophobic caper ATM is a little confining thriller that derives its psychological kicks from the logistical intimacy of an ATM kiosk where entrapment and nervous twitches should equal instant chills—at the expense of an unknown hooded winter coat-wearing psycho prancing about the vicinity with a sickened agenda in mind.

Attack of the Vegan Zombies! (Mark's take)
01/04/2010. The vines go after the people and the zombies go after the wine In Attack Of The Vegan Zombies! Writer/director/star Jim Townsend has a feel for older horror films and fresher ideas for a zombie movie. The action scenes do not work really well, but Townsend knows not to let this degenerate into too much of spoof too soon.

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