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DVDs, Books, Broadcast TV and Merchandise all come under the gaze of our expert reviewers.

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Blu-Ray (225)

The latest winner in the format wars, we look at both television and movies that are hitting the shelves in this pristine new technology.

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Books (11)

Essential reading materials reviewed so that you can assemble the library most suited to your interests.

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Broadcast (2)

The latest transmissions on terrestrial and digital television channels across the panet, and what we think of them.

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Cult Movies on DVD (291)

All the best in Cult Movies released onto DVD

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Events (21)

Places to go and people to see, and here we find out whether it was worth it or not!

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Handbags Before Dawn (8)

Contentious opinions on all matters television - from schedulers to the programmes themselves, the continuity errors to the highs and lows of what actually makes it to the screen.

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Interviews (10)

Interviews with stars and programme makers from various CULT TV universes.

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Merchandise (8)

Collectables of all shapes and sizes reviewed and rated

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Star Profiles (153)

Background information and career history of cult celebrities from in front of and behind the camera.

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TV DVDs (280)

The latest titles from TV series and TV specials range to hit the shelves and online stores

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Sunday, 27 April 2014

Ace In The Hole - out on Dual-Format DVD and Blu-rayKirk Douglas stars in this biting drama about the power of the media and one reporter's willingness to do anything to rebuild his flat-lining career. Chuck Tatum (Douglas) muscles his way into a job on a lowly Albuquerque newspaper having been fired from all of previous roles. He happens across the story of a treasure hunter pinned down in a partially collapsed ancient Indian cave-dwelling, and spies potential media gold.

Having gained the confidence of Leo, the unfortunate victim (Richard Benedict, who went on to be best known as a Director on the likes of Run For Your Life and the original Hawaii Five-O), Tatum takes advantage of the local sheriff's absence and seizes control of the situation, rounding up a local doctor, policeman and a mining contractor. On hearing how quickly they can rescue Leo, the reporter craftily talks them round to drawing the incident out by days by using safer but much slower methods, thereby maximising publicity of the event.

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Sunday, 27 April 2014

Death Is A Woman - Out Now on DVDAgent Parbury (Mark Burns – Alfred in “Death in Venice”) goes undercover on a sunny Mediterranean island to track down some drug smugglers. His investigation hits the rocks when two of the principal suspects quickly end up dead and he becomes the prime murder suspect. The odds seem stacked against him, especially when his chief opponent is a woman so devious, beautiful and deadly that nothing will stand in her way!

Trisha Noble (aka Oz singer Patsy Ann [aka Trisha] Noble – Jobal Naberrie in “Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith”, Rosie Johnson in Strike Force) plays Francesca, the sultry lady in question. Together with her remaining partner in crime Joe (Shaun Curry – Corporal Robbins in “A Bridge Too Far”, Les Pinner in Just Good Friends) she hatches a plan to get off the island with their final heroin haul, hopefully evading Parbury and local law enforcement.

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Saturday, 26 April 2014

Violent Saturday - out on dual format Blu-ray and DVDThis movie is part thriller, part smouldering melodrama. Directed by Richard Fleischer (“Tora! Tora! Tora!”, “Soylent Green”, “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea”), it features a trio of bank robbers who arrive at the pokey town of Bradenville, Arizona to execute what should be an easy heist. The complicated lives of the locals churn away in the foreground and background, seemingly destined to collide with the impending crime.

Victor Mature (“The Robe”, “Samson and Delilah”) stars as family man Shelly Martin, the foreman of the local quarry that drives much of the town's economy and is owned by local big-wigs, the Fairchilds; Richard Egan (“Pollyanna”) is Boyd, the heir-apparent. The gangsters are played by boss Stephen McNally (“Winchester ‘73”), muscle Lee Marvin (“The Dirty Dozen”) and brains J Carrol Naish (“Rio Grande”).

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Sunday, 13 April 2014

The Complete Brittas Empire out now on DVDChris Barrie of Red Dwarf and “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider” fame stars in this classic British sitcom about the misguided manager of a leisure centre. Over the course of seven seasons, Gordon Brittas and his team experience every imaginable nightmare that can befall a sports centre, and quite a few inconceivable ones too! If Brittas is not directly responsible for these chaotic events, you can guarantee he is about to add fuel to the fire.

Pippa Haywood (Moonfleet, “Tamara Drewe”) plays Brittas' long-suffering wife Helen. Key members of Gordon's staff include the emotional rollercoaster that is receptionist Carole (Harriet Thorpe – “Calendar Girls”), Colin the ever-sick Deputy Manager of the centre's water-based facilities (Michael Burns - Lovejoy), level-headed Laura, the Deputy Manager of dry sports (Julia St John - Casualty), and Brittas' mischievous secretary Julie (Judy Flynn - The House of Elliot).

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Sunday, 13 April 2014

The Flying Squad - out now on DVDBased on a thriller by prolific author Edgar Wallace, “The Flying Squad” is about a police inspector's cat and mouse pursuit of a cold-blooded criminal. At New Scotland Yard, Inspector Bradley (Sebastian Shaw - Anakin Skywalker in “Return of the Jedi”) is threatened with demotion by his boss unless he can deliver results. Bradley suspects Mark McGill, a reputable business man by day, is involved in a major smuggling racket.

McGill (Jack Hawkins – “Zulu”, “Ben Hur”, “Lawrence of Arabia”) is indeed involved in contraband, sneakily smuggling drugs into London via an elaborate combination of plane, canal boat and lorry, and hidden amongst French cosmetics to throw even his fellow wrong-doers off the scent. Whilst presenting a sophisticated, charming image, the ultra-cautious McGill deals with potential lose ends in his organisation with brutal efficiency.

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Thursday, 03 April 2014

Filmed In Supermarionation - the book jumps onto the big screenBack in 2010, we were amazed by the book “Filmed in Supermarionation”. A tightly researched tome, full of exclusive new information and many a correction of long-duplicated errors on the marionette work of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson, now we have something none of us were expecting... the movie of the book!

Network Distributing are the backers of the project, which is bidding to be known as “the definitive documentary about the culturally iconic puppetry and animation technique developed by Gerry and Sylvia, Supermarionation”. Considering the previous attempts at doing so, from the likes of the BBC and Channel 5, it’s fair to say this isn’t too much of a stretch! For the uninitiated, Supermarionation was utilised in all their programmes throughout the 1960s including Stingray, Captain Scarlet and The Mysterons and, most famously, Thunderbirds.

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Monday, 31 March 2014

House in the Woods - Out on DVD from NetworkThis is a concise mystery-thriller starring Michael Gough (Alfred in Burton’s “Batman”, the Celestial Toymaker from classic Doctor Who) as Geoffrey Carter, an unsociable novelist who is struggling to find his muse in a city apartment where the friendly, invasive neighbours never seem to stop partying. Geoff and his wife Carol (Patricia Roc – “Millions Like Us”) see an advert for a isolated cottage and drive into the country to see if it is the remedy the writer seeks.

The owner of the cottage, Spencer Rowland (Ronald Howard - Sherlock Holmes, “The Curse of the Mummy's Tomb”) is amazingly affable and accommodating, and offers the property to the Carters for peanuts. He suggests they move in right away, and promises to get out of their hair as soon as the rental agreement has been written up. Everything is going swimmingly until Geoff starts to suspect that their host is not quite as genuine as he appears.

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Monday, 31 March 2014

Wake in Fright out in a dual format DVD and Blu-ray packageA frustrated school teacher consigned to a tiny outback village sets his sights on civilised Sydney for the Christmas holidays, to be with his girlfriend. The first leg of his trip delivers him to Bundanyabba, a larger but no less isolated mining town, and the beginnings of a downward spiral into a hellish state of near-permanent drunkenness and immorality. It is a journey in which he will discover a dark side to his personality.

On the eve of his flight, the teacher, John Grant (Gary Bond – “Zulu”, Frontier) is foolishly sucked into a high-stakes coin-tossing game with predictably dire consequences. He reluctantly becomes dependent on the hospitality and charity of the locals, including self-acknowledged alcoholic Doc Tydon (Donald Pleasance – “Fantastic Voyage”, “Halloween”) and policeman Jock Crawford (Chips Rafferty – “Mutiny on the Bounty”).

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Monday, 31 March 2014

The Machine - out now on DVD and Blu-rayIn the not too distant future, Britain is in the throws of another deep recession and engaged in an antagonistic relationship with China that threatens to disintegrate into total war. The world's advanced powers are in a new arms race, only this time the goal is the ultimate, artificially intelligent, robotic killing machine. Nuclear weapons are so passé! If scientists can combine Turing test-beating AI with a killer android, the war could be over before it has even begun.

Head scientist Vincent (Toby Stephens – Vexed, “Die Another Day”) hires Ava, a promising AI specialist (Caity Lotz - Arrow, "The Pact") to develop cutting-edge software, secretly hoping that the project will ultimately help his mentally disabled daughter recover her faculties. Meanwhile, Vincent's boss Thomson (Denis Lawson - New Tricks, Wedge from the original “Star Wars” trilogy) plans to hijack their work to guarantee the creation of the ultimate weapon.

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Monday, 17 March 2014

The Terrornauts on DVDCult movie producers Milton Subotsky and Max Rosenberg swiftly followed up their duo of 1960s “Doctor Who” cinematic spectaculars with this whacky SF adventure, based on “The Wailing Asteroid” by Hugo-award winning author Murray Leinster. Joe Burke and Ben Keller, a pair of astronomers searching for signs of intelligent life in outer space, lock onto a mysterious radio signal, little knowing that when they send a reply they will end up in a battle for the future of the galaxy!

Simon Oates (Dr Ridge in Doomwatch) and Stanley Meadows (Inspector Keightley in “The Ipcress File”) star as the aforementioned scientists, aided by the glamorous Zena Marshall (Miss Taro in “Dr No”) as their assistant. This was Zena’s final role, as she retired from the acting profession to concentrate on life with her third husband, the writer and producer Ivan Foxwell.

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Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Joey Boy finally comes to DVDA monochrome release from 1965, this is a feature wrongfully forgotten in the archives of British cinema. Perhaps this is due to it being consigned to Black and White at a time when the majority of films were being realised in colour could be a key to this – by the time television would have beckoned for it, the number of screenings would have been limited on a medium that, by the end of the 1960s, was thirsty for as much of its output to be in bright and brash colour.

“Joey Boy” is set during World War II, and has its focus on a group of London-based hustlers who are given the option to take a tour of duty with the Army over incarceration for being captured red-handing running a gambling den. Directed and co-written by “St Trinian’s” Frank Launder the major star is Harry H Corbett (Harold in Steptoe and Son, DS Sidney Bung in “Carry on Screaming!”), but he’s just the first of what are now a series of well-known faces populating every corner of the tale. With “Joey Boy” presented on DVD for the first time in a pristine brand-new transfer from original film elements, Cult TV has three copies to give away in our prize competition.

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Thursday, 06 March 2014

Cosplayers UK - The Movie - out on DVDFilmed at the May 2011 London MCM Expo event, “Cosplayers UK - The Movie” covers the fascinating subject of cosplay (short for costume play).

The documentary features in-depth interviews with a handful of ardent, amateur costume designers, footage of many of the best outfits sported by attendees at the Expo, and culminates in a hard-fought competition for a place in that year's European cosplay final.

Fans choose from an amazingly wide range of source material for their costumes, including video games, anime, comics, TV series and films. Favourites if the documentary is anything to go by are the hugely popular Final Fantasy series of role-playing games, Marvel and DC comic-book characters such as Batman and The Joker, and Star Wars icons.

Once immersed in their costumes, folk strut their stuff around London Excel's massive exhibition halls over the course of the event's three days.

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Monday, 24 February 2014

The hardly-seen Valley of Eagles out now on DVDA priceless piece of tech is stolen, the key to a new alternative form of power, and a Nobel Prize-winning scientist’s wife goes missing in this intriguing adventure film. John McCallum stars as Dr Nils Ahlen, the aforementioned boffin, who goes in search of parts of his radical energy-generating equipment which, in the wrong hands, could be used to propel a missile. He is joined by Inspector Peterson (Jack Warner, the legendary George Dixon of Dixon of Dock Green). They must chase after Ahlen’s high-maintenance wife Helga (Mary Laura Wood) and Ahlen’s assistant Strom (Anthony Dawson), as their journey takes them from the icy Swedish capital to a treacherous, wolf-riddled mountain valley in “Valley of Eagles”.

What begins as an urban detective story evolves into something quite different. As they journey towards the northern frontiers, Ahlen and Peterson come into contact with some Lapp reindeer herders, and ultimately encounter a tribe with a very unusual hunting technique (the clue is in the film's title!).

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Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Mysterious Cities of Gold - A Season 2 at long last!It’s thirty-odd years since a children’s adventure cartoon aired on BBC1, fondly remembered by those of a certain age. It was introduced to us by Philip Schofield in the infamous broom cupboard, which also played host to a certain Gordon the Gopher. And incredibly, a brand new series of The Mysterious Cities of Gold has just been released on both DVD and Blu-ray.

The Mysterious Cities Of Gold's second season rejoins the adventures of Esteban, Tau, and Zia as if they had never been away. Indeed, it’s been seen in the UK on the Kix channel (the premiere run from 9th November last year, 2013), which is channel 627 on Sky, or 606 on Freesat. It comprises 26 episodes (the original ‘First Season’ clocked up 39 on its own), and has been brought to fruition by the production team that helmed the original series.

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Monday, 17 February 2014

Some Will, Some Won't comes to DVDThere aren’t many films which can create such a jaw-dropping reaction when viewed for the first time – especially if you don’t read the cast list at the start of the movie. This is certainly the case with lost British film “Some Will, Some Won’t”, which is offered here by Network Distributing in a brand-new transfer from the original film elements, with the option of seeing it in its as-exhibited theatrical aspect ratio, too.

Released in 1970, the plot revolves a bizarre condition in a will, which tests the four potential benefactors. Know as an arch-prankster, Henry Russell (Wilfrid Brambell) starts the film by making Big Ben chime well beyond 12, before falling to his death from the clock face, in a scene which has echoes of an Emmet Brown scene in “Back to the Future”.  To bag their legacies of £150,000 each, the quartet of relations have to step out of character, and prove themselves as human beings. Can they rise to their respective challenges?

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Monday, 17 February 2014

John Dies At The End on Blu-ray and DVD“John Dies at the End” is the latest horror-comedy from the director of “Phantasm” and “Bubba Ho-Tep”, Don Coscarelli. Chase Williamson (“Sparks”) stars as Dave Wong, a layabout who comes across a new recreational drug called Soy Sauce. The effects of Sauce go way beyond any other substance, in that they grant the user powers such as clairvoyance and cross-dimensional vision. Of course, these benefits come with a very hefty caveat.

Dave and his slacker mate John (Rob Mayes - The Client List) uncover an invading force of demons from another dimension and set about trying to avert the apocalypse. Meanwhile, Dave meets Arnie, a sceptical reporter (Paul Giamatti – “Sideways”, Downton Abbey) who finds the truth a little hard to stomach. And what role does celebrity psychic Dr Albert Marconi (Clancy Brown - Sleepy Hollow, “Highlander”) have to play?

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Tuesday, 11 February 2014

A double-dose of alex:g and Tom Mutiny with previews and reviews of extraordinary fictional telly, tonight and every Tuesday but for one week only two hours from  5-7pm on www.peterborough.fm - or you can also tune in via tunein.com

Join us for CULT TV ON YOUR RADIO - available worldwide on Peterborough FM

Following the last-minute cancellation of last week's show due to technical difficulties at the station, the duo are back to point you in the direction of the TV shows to look out for, the best of the movies at the cinema, and DVD and Blu-ray reviews (both new releases and back catalogue). All to celebrate the best in television that inspires people to do a lot more than just sit and watch!

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Monday, 10 February 2014

Q Planes - out now on DVDKnown stateside as “Clouds Over Europe”, this seldom-seen 1939 movie stars Ralph Richardson as Major Charles Hammond, a Scotland Yard officer who is a prototype for the Jason King character of Department ‘S’ fame. Laurence Olivier is in a supporting role as Tony McVane, a test pilot engaged in secret experimental missions. Valerie Hobson (Edith in 1949’s “Kind Hearts and Coronets”) is cynical reporter Kay Lawrence, in this fun pre-WWII spy drama.

Directed by Tim Whelan (best known for 1940’s “The Thief of Baghdad”) and featuring superlative art direction from Vincent Korda (1949’s “The Third Man” and 1962’s “The Longest Day”), “Q Planes” is presented on this Network release in a brand-new transfer from the original film elements. Of interest to Cult TV appreciators are two uncredited performances – one from John Laurie of Dad’s Army fame as a newspaper editor, and also look out for Derek Farr (Ensor in the Blake’s 7 episode “Orac”).

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Monday, 03 February 2014

Banacek - Seasons 1 and 2 on UK DVDJust over a decade before he played Hannibal Smith, The A Team's cigar-chomping mercenary leader, George Peppard wowed audiences in the detective series Banacek. Thomas Banacek is a Polish-American insurance investigator, based in Boston, with a speciality for cracking bizarre, seemingly unsolvable cases of lost property. For his standard fee of 10%, the delightfully smug PI can be counted on to locate missing people, valuables and relics. And now YOU have a chance to win one of three copies of both seasons of Banacek on DVD, thanks to those nice folk at Fabulous Films, and Cult TV.

Although Banacek does most of the legwork himself, his small team of associates includes Jay Drury, his opinionated driver (Ralph Manza – Bud in Newhart) and Felix Mulholland, a debonair Boston antiquarian bookseller and researcher (Murray Matheson – Mr Agee in “Twilight Zone: The Movie”). Like many sleuths, Banacek is constantly underestimated, and he can certainly handle himself when criminals attempt to bring his investigations to a premature and often fatal conclusion.

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Monday, 27 January 2014

Kiss of the Damned on DVD and Blu-ray“Kiss of the Damned” is a vampire film for those horror fans who prefer a more gothic, Euro art-house take on the genre rather than the sparkly, angst-ridden “Twilight” blood suckers. Milo Ventimiglia (Heroes, “Rocky Balboa”) plays Paolo, a struggling screenwriter who one night bumps into a spellbinding woman called Djuna (Josephine de La Baume – “Rush”, “One Day”). Despite some serious sparks on their first date, Djuna tries to avoid him.

Paolo refuses to stay away and soon discovers the reason for Djuna's reluctance: she is a vampire and she fears she will not be able to resist feeding on him. The writer is not deterred and sure enough, she turns him. They try to adhere to a conscientious lifestyle but the arrival of Djuna's immoral and destructive sister Mimi (Roxane Mesquida – “Rubber”, “Kaboom”) threatens to turn their world upside down.

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Monday, 13 January 2014

Parks and Recreation Season 4 on DVDThe fourth season of the Emmy and Golden Globe-nominated comedy series focuses on Leslie Knope’s campaign to run for office in Pawnee City Council, naively expecting it to be a cakewalk. This being Pawnee, anything and everything will conspire to trip up the go-getting local government employee (Amy Poehler - Saturday Night Live), and threaten her relationship with colleague Ben (Adam Scott – “Step Brothers”).

Season 4 features 22 episodes of disorderly fun and endearing interaction between the show's whacky cast of characters. Take for example Tom (Aziz Ansari – “Epic”) and his business partner's absurd efforts to run a promotional business by hosting luxurious parties but not actually selling anything. This happy-go-lucky attitude is common amongst Parks' characters and is partly what makes it so uplifting.

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Monday, 13 January 2014

Riddick on DVD and Blu-ray nowSurvival: Riddick is extremely good at it as witnessed in both “Pitch Black” (2000) and “The Chronicles of Riddick” (2004). It is just as well, because the bald-headed, mirror-eyed anti-hero has got himself in a spot of bother once again. Having risen to the top of the food chain and become King of the Necromancers, he becomes careless and is left for dead on another inhospitable world, surrounded by a new assortment of deadly creatures and nursing a broken leg.

To add to his misery, despicable bounty hunters drop in to see if they can succeed where so many others have failed. Riddick thrives on a challenge, however, and nobody would bet against him making it out alive. David Twohy (“The Arrival”) directs once again, and Diesel's co-stars include Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica), Jordi Mollà (“Columbiana”), Matt Nable (“Killer Elite”) and wrestling juggernaut Dave Bautista.

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Sunday, 29 December 2013

Battle of the Damned - available on DVD and Blu-rayDolph Lundgren battles zombies with killer robots in a post-apocalyptic setting. As far as back-of-a-fag-packet synopses go it sounds tantalising if you like any one of the above elements, never mind all four. Throw in an “Escape from New York”-style rescue mission and we are all set, thanks to an irresponsible biotech firm who accidentally release a deadly pathogen into the world.

Lundgren (“The Expendables”, “Rocky IV”) stars as Major Max Gatling, a mercenary for hire tasked with rescuing Jude, the daughter of the biotech company's CEO. Oh, the irony. The good news is that Jude (Melanie Zanetti  - “Tracks”) proves to be quite easy to locate; the bad news is that she is holed-up with a slightly psychotic father figure (David Field – “Chopper”) and the blockaded city is about to be fire-bombed out of existence.

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Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Nosferatu comes to Blu-ray and DVDA little over ninety years since its original release, F W Murnau's gothic-horror classic returns in stunningly remastered high-definition. “Nosferatu - A Symphony of Horrors” (to use its full title) is a vampire movie that draws heavily from Dracula. Max Schreck stars as Count Orlock, a mysterious Transylvanian aristocrat seeking a suitable property in the fictitious German town of Wisborg, with devastating consequences for the local population.

A naive gentleman called Thomas Hutter (Gustav von Wangenheim) makes the long trek to the Count's remote castle to discuss housing options, foolishly ignoring warnings about the horror that awaits. Back in Wisborg, Thomas's sweetheart Ellen (Greta Schröder) is driven close to insanity by the misery brought on by their enforced separation, and also the influence of a strange telepathic connection to the Count.

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Tuesday, 26 November 2013

L A LAW - Season 6 comes to DVDThe hit American legal drama returns for a sixth season, originally broadcast in the early 1990s and out now on DVD for the very first time. Fallout from the bitter internal conflict at McKenzie Brackman last time resulted in the resignations of Michael, Victor, Grace and Abby, and a sizeable deficit in the company's workforce. The firm's financial and employment woes mean that it needs to act fast or go under forever.

Bossy entertainment lawyer Susan Bloom (Conchata Ferrell - Two and a Half Men, “Edward Scissorhands”) is given office space in a deal to help bolster the finances, and with her comes smug Englishman Frank Kittredge (Michael Cumpsty – “The Ice Storm”). Senior Partner Leyland (Richard Dysart – “Being There”) also manages to persuade Grace to come back if only for a while to boost the firm's profile. Perhaps now the company has a fighting chance at survival.

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