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The time has come and gone to make your choices in the Cult TV Awards 2017!  CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE VOTING FORM.

Vote Now in the Cult TV Awards 2017

There were five huge prizes up for grabs, all just for telling us your favourites. Find out about what was on offer BY CLICKING HERE. Voting closed at 11.59pm GMT on Sunday 10 December 2017. The lucky winners were Graeme Michael of Nottingham (The Brothers 1-7 Complete DVD collection), Adrian Hall of Swadincote and Roger Clark of Wednesbury (1990 complete DVD collection), and Masih Malik of Epsom Downs and David Comerford of Peterborough (Spike Milligan's Q Almost Complete DVD Collection).

Don't forget, there's also the Cult TV Awards Ceremony to attend, for the first time in ten years, on Saturday 30 December 2017.  It's at The Broadway, the newly reopened theatre in Peterborough, and you can find out more BY CLICKING HERE. It's not just a ceremony, there's also a theme party and dinner included - all of which makes it excellent value!

And now, here's the details of all the nominees that got themselves onto the voting form...

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Monday, 20 November 2017

Tag - ouit now on Blu-rayA few minutes into “Tag”, my jaw was on the flaw and I did not know whether to laugh, scream or reach for the sick bucket. I settled mostly on laughing, having immediately skipped back to re-watch a particularly shocking scene again, and make sure I had not imagined it. The film contains some seriously disturbing imagery, but nothing quite matches the opening. School girls, buckets of blood and bewilderment are high on the agenda.

Mitsuko (Reina Treindl) is on a school coach trip when a bizarre disaster strikes. Fleeing for her life from an unknown threat, she bumps into her classmates who she thought were dead, at an unfamiliar school. They think Mitsuko is suffering from amnesia but soon realise something terrible is going on. This Japanese horror movie by director Sion Sono (“Suicide Club”) wants to shock you but also make you think.

Voting has just begun for the Cult TV Awards 2017, having just gone through the nominations stage where you had the chance to help decide the five nominees in each category.

You can access the Voting Form BY CLICKING HERE, and we now take the chance to inform you of the FIVE superb prizes we have up for grabs, thanks to Simply Media, just for supporting your favourites with your votes in this, the crucial stage of proceedings.

In summary, our star prize is the complete collection of THE BROTHERS – all seven seasons over 27 DVDs with a RRP of £149.99!  Next, we have two copies of THE ALMOST COMPLETE ‘Q’ COLLECTION, five DVDs of Spike Milligan madness with a RRP of £29.99.  Finally, we have two copies of 1990 – THE COMPLETE COLLECTION – Edward Woodward’s tale of a ‘near future’ set in the past, running over four DVDs with a RRP of £29.99.

Win prizes for voting in the Cult TV Awards 2017

And don’t forget to book your place for the actual live ceremony itself, happening on Saturday 30 December 2017 at The Broadway (Peterborough).  Further details can be found at:

http://thebroadway.today/index.php/class/cult-tv-awards-2017/

For those who want to know more about what’s on offer, just for voting, here are further details of the prizes…

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Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Buster Keaton - 3 Films on Blu-rayThis box set presents some of the very best silent movies from the 1920s starring Buster Keaton. It includes “Sherlock Jr.”, “The General” and “Steamboat Bill, Jr.”, along with a wealth of special features and a 60-page book. Each film has been meticulously remastered for Blu-ray from 4K sources, with crisp black and white visuals. Keaton’s trademark physical comedy and impeccable timing have never looked so good.

My review focuses on “The General”, a lively piece set in the early 1860s during the American Civil War. Keaton plays Johnnie Gray, a steam train engineer on the side of the Southern Confederates. Gray’s engine, the titular General, is stolen in an audacious heist by spies from opposing Union forces, and it is down to Gray to recapture the train, rescue his lover who is taken hostage, as well as return home to relay details of a surprise attack.

Voting has just closed in the nominations phase of this year’s Cult TV Awards, in what is now our 24th year of presenting our appreciation of the best in fictional television, to the talent behind the shows that we make time for more than others. Now we move on to the nitty-gritty as the voting form is prepared. As an incentive to cast your nominations, we had one copy each of The Steve Martin DVD Collection, The Peter Sellers DVD Collection, The Richard Pryor DVD Collection, and The ‘Killer B’ DVD Movie Collection, thanks to Fabulous Films/Fremantle Media Enterprises, available as an appreciation to four lucky voters to get their ‘thinking caps’ on and make your nominations.

The Cult TV Awards are back as a live event you can attend

You can find out more about the nomination incentive prizes BY CLICKING HERE. The top five nominations in each category from what you suggest will be compiled onto the Voting Form, which is the next stage of finding out this year’s eventual winners! Nominations closed on 12th November 2017.

You can also attend the actual CULT TV AWARDS 2017 Ceremony, Dinner and Party on Saturday 30th December 2017.  Tickets are available NOW. Find out more BY CLICKING HERE.

Voting has just closed in the nominations phase of this year’s Cult TV Awards, in what is now our 24th year of presenting our appreciation of the best in fictional television, to the talent behind the shows that we make time for more than others. The voting stage, featuring the top five in each Awards category, will be starting shortly - look out for the announcement, and more big prizes up for grabs, just for taking part.

Prizes for nominating in the Cult TV Awards 2017

You can find out more about making your nominations BY CLICKING HERE. You will also find a link to the nominations form at THIS LINK. As an incentive to make your votes, four lucky nominators have secured one of a quartet of DVD prizes from Fabulous Films.  These were The Peter Sellers Collection (won by Sue Wellings of Rushden), The Steve Martin Collection (won by Philippa Chapman of Glastonbury), The ‘Killer B’ Movie Collection (won by Colin Copper of March) and The Richard Pryor Collection (won by Matthew John Restaino of Walton - who was fourth out of the hat, but his first choice had already been taken).  Here we give you full details of what they won, simply for them elling us their favourites for 2017…

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Tuesday, 17 October 2017

The Vikings - available now on Blu-ray“The Vikings” is a star-studded historical epic featuring Kirk Douglas, Tony Curtis, Janet Leigh and Ernest Bourgnine. Einar (Douglas – “Spartacus”, “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea”) is an impetuous, war-waging Viking prince who becomes infatuated with an English princess (Leigh – “Psycho”, “Touch of Evil”), and driven by his hatred of Eric, a defiant slave who is actually his bastard half-brother, though neither of them know it.

Eric (Curtis – “Some Like it Hot”, “The Defiant Ones”) is the offspring of Viking King Ragnar (Borgnine – “The Wild Bunch”, “The Dirty Dozen”) and an English queen, who seems fated to big things. The swashbuckling, melodramatic story is based on a novel by Edison Marshall, and directed by Richard Fleischer (“Tora! Tora! Tora!”, “Soylent Green”).

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Monday, 16 October 2017

The Party - Out now on Blu-rayThe dynamite duo of Peter Sellers and director Blake Edwards (“The Pink Panther”, “A Shot in the Dark”) return for this comedy about an accident-prone Indian actor who is mistakenly invited to a prestigious Hollywood dinner party. Hrundi V Bakshi (Sellers) arrives at the palatial residence of movie mogul Geoffrey Clutterbuck, and immediately begins to weave a web of chaos in the best slapstick tradition of Inspector Clouseau, Laurel and Hardy, and Mr Bean.

Bakshi is not the only individual disrupting the party, however, as overbearing, egotistical big-wigs try to force themselves on up-and-coming starlets, and an alcoholic waiter causes friction in the kitchen. And that is before a baby elephant makes an appearance! A homage to the silent movie era, this largely improvised farce is heavy on physical comedy and light on dialogue, and based on recent events is as topical now as must have 50 years ago.

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Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Hannibal Brooks - out now on DVDOliver Reed (“Gladiator”, “Oliver!”) stars in this unusual World War II movie about a British soldier’s mission to escort an elephant from a zoo in Munich to Innsbruck in neighbouring Austria. The plan is to take a train but then a German officer commandeers their carriage and Brooks is forced to go on foot, with an attractive Polish cook and two guards for company. Michael Winner of “Death Wish” fame directs.

There is a bit of everything in this film – action, comedy, romance, suspense and at the centre of it all is Lucy the elephant, who acts as both a hindrance and a vital aid when events take a perilous turn. Reluctant soldier Hannibal (Reed) crosses paths time and again with an American POW called Packy (Michael J. Pollard – “Bonnie and Clyde”, “Scrooged”) and his growing guerrilla army, leading to some nervous exchanges.

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Sunday, 24 September 2017

Gotham - Season 3 out now on Blu-ray and DVDAnarchy reigns in Gotham as escapees from the Indian Hill research lab run riot, whilst Jim Gordon has left the GCPD and become a lone bounty hunter. Adding to the chaos is murderous hypnotist The Mad Hatter and the mysterious Court of Owls who are pulling strings throughout the city. Meanwhile, an adolescent Bruce Wayne is slowly but surely gaining in experience, strength and a sense of purpose as a future Batman.

Released on home video in the before its broadcast on other channels and streaming services, it has been a frustratingly long wait for UK Gotham fans. Has it been worth it? On balance I would have to say yes. The show has a more confident feel to it now, with characters that are slowly but surely developing into the comic book supervillains and superheroes we know and love (or love to hate).

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Monday, 18 September 2017

Journey to the Center of the Earth - out now on Blu-rayBased on Jules Verne’s classic novel, “Journey to the Center of the Earth” is an old-school, globe-trotting adventure story. Reminiscent of the escapades of Indiana Jones and Tintin, the film stars James Mason as Sir Oliver Lindenbrook, a Scottish scientist who stumbles on a secret route to the Earth’s core, following in the footsteps of a legendary long-lost explorer.

Lindenbrook initially has student Alec McEwan (singer Pat Boone) for company on their trip to an Icelandic volcano, with the duo picking up Hans - a towering blond local (Peter Ronson) - and Carla (Arlene Dahl – The Love Boat), the Swedish wife of a fellow scientist en-route. Oh, and Han’s savvy pet duck, Gertrude. If the journey into the planet was not dangerous enough, they also have to contend with a murderous, despicable rival.

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Monday, 18 September 2017

The Red Turtle - out on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital DownloadNominated for 2017’s Best Animated Feature Film Oscar, “The Red Turtle”, is another jaw-dropping release from Studio Ghibli (“Spirited Away”, “My Neighbour Totoro”). A man awakens on the beach of a deserted island after being shipwrecked. With nothing but the native wildlife to keep him company, he attempts to escape but is repeatedly obstructed by an unseen force from beneath the waves.

Eventually the man discovers a large red turtle is responsible for the destruction of his many rafts. If that fact was not strange enough he soon finds out there is much more to the turtle than he could possibly imagine, and his life on the island takes a dramatic turn that will change him forever. The writer/director is Michaël Dudok de Wit (“Father and Daughter”).

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Monday, 21 August 2017

Doctor Cyclops - out now on DVDFour experts in disparate fields of science and engineering are summoned to a remote base in the Amazonian jungle where Dr. Thorkel is doing top secret research. Thorkel dismisses them shortly after they arrive, but – curiosity aroused – they insist on staying, determined to find out what the Doctor is working on. The chance discovery of rich radium deposits in a local mine suggests it is not anything good.

Thorkel (Albert Dekker – “The Wild Bunch”, “East of Eden”) traps his visitors and subjects them to a ray that shrinks them to one fifth of their normal size. Their troubles are only just beginning, however, as the Doctor plans to subject them to further laboratory tests before feeding them to his vicious black cat! Can they survive long enough to return to their original size? The director is Ernest B. Schoedsack of 1933 “King Kong” fame.

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Wednesday, 26 July 2017

House of 1,000 Corpses - Out Now on DVDMetal singer Rob Zombie began his movie-directing career with this insane story about two young couples who come unstuck when they encounter a degenerate, murderous family of freaks. Denise, Jerry, Mary and Bill are researching weird and wonderful road-side attractions when they happen across Captain Spaulding’s Museum of Monsters and Madmen. Little do they know that the macabre exhibits within are only a taste of what is to come.

Heavily influenced by the likes of “The Texas Chain Saw Massacre” and “The Hills Have Eyes”, “1000 Corpses” is set the day before Halloween, 1977. Zombie strives desperately hard to shock and amuse in equal measure, and during an early attempted heist of the museum he does succeed, thanks largely to Sid Haig’s superbly jaundiced, devil-may-care performance as Spaulding, a clown bedecked in an outlandish, all-American outfit.

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Monday, 24 July 2017

Der Mude  Tod out now on Blu-rayThis is the film that gave hugely influential writer/director Fritz Lang (“Metropolis”,”M”) his breakthrough at the age of 30. Four tales in one, the primary story traces the misfortunes of a young woman (Lil Dagover – “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari”), whose fiancé is taken by Death soon after they arrive at a village inn. Overcome with grief, the woman pleads with the Grim Reaper to let her either join her lover in death or bring him back to life.

Death (Berhard Goetzke – “Dr Mabuse: The Gambler”, “Die Nibelungen”) offers her a glimmer of hope if she can save one of three characters in separate narratives, each dealing with doomed lovers in different tragedies. The first is a Persian escapade featuring a Caliph who hunts his sister’s infidel partner; the second is a Shakespeare-light tale set in Venice where a woman plots her husband-to-be’s murder. Lastly, we have a more humorous adventure set in mystical China.

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Saturday, 01 July 2017

The Brothers - Series 6 out on DVD nowA family haulage business tries to keep expanding to survive. The more it tries, the more the relatives at its core realise they are losing control of their empire. There are slippery people with unclear motives getting involved, and very few outsiders are straight about what their part in proceedings is, or will be.  The Americans would later take such storylines to levels of excess in the likes of Dallas and Dynasty, but us Brits did it first, and in some ways did it a lot better.

The Brothers: The Complete Series 6 contains all 13 episodes of this Sunday night TV drama, this set dating from 1976, which follows the individual releases of the first five series by Simply Media. Series 1 came to us back in October 2006, with Series 2 taking until November 2015 to get a release. Series 3 followed in November 2016, and Series 4 in January 2017.  Cult TV gave you a primer on the series with the release in March 2017 of Series 5, which you can read by CLICKING HERE. Rest assured, undoubtedly the subsequent series have been well worth the wait!

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Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Slaughterhouse-Five out now on Blu-rayBilly Pilgrim is unstuck in time, bouncing from one end of his tragic life to the other and to random, key points in between. If that was not strange enough, he also spends time on the planet of Tralfamadore, caught beneath a small glass dome and verbally prodded by aliens like a flea in a circus. This wild story is based on a book by Kurt Vonnegut entitled ‘Slaughterhouse Five-Or The Children's Crusade A Duty-Dance with Death’.

Michael Sacks (“The Sugarland Express”, “The Amityville Horror”) stars as Billy, a man who gets caught by the Germans in World War II and sent to a harsh prison camp before being relocated to the disused, titular slaughterhouse in Dresden for forced labour. This is just before the infamous bombing, which is just one of the monumentally disastrous moments in his life. Billy’s family life later on is less traumatic, at least for a time!

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Monday, 26 June 2017

Sea of Love - out now on Blu-rayAl Pacino, Ellen Barkin and John Goodman star in this steamy thriller about couple of detectives trying to solve a multiple homicide in New York. Det. Frank Keller (Pacino – “The Godfather”, “Heat”) has been on the force 20 years and he is jaded, frustrated and lives alone. A new case comes along where the male victims have all been shot in the back of the head whilst naked in bed, and there seems to be a link to a lonely-hearts advert in the paper.

Keller and Det Sherman (Goodman – “The Big Lebowski”, “10 Cloverfield Lane”) come up with a crazy plan to flush the killer out by placing a similar ad in the singles page, and then dating the respondents. This is how Keller meets Helen (Barkin – “This Boy’s Life”, Animal Kingdom), a very fiery and confident suspect with whom the detective gets a little too personally involved.

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Thursday, 22 June 2017

Knight Rider 2010 - out on DVDBefore getting into the meat of a review of “Knight Rider 2010”, a little aside as to what we have here. Back in December 2003, when a ‘reboot’ of Battlestar Galactica appeared, many of the less-than-convinced original fan base nicknamed it ‘GINO’ – Galactica In Name Only. Original Knight Rider fans, when they saw “2010”, should have had the foresight to name this 1994 attempt ‘KRINO’ – Knight Rider In Name Only. It’s more ‘Mad Max’ than ‘Michael Knight’ – who’s nowhere to be seen in this version of the format. We even get teased to think the Black Trans-Am of the original will be the hook to what has gone before, as various super cars in pristine condition are revealed from under assorted tarpaulins.

What we get instead is a Mustang more suited to a stock car race track. Admittedly, in the “Knight Rider 2000” movie, (CLICK HERE for our review) we were told that KITT’s body had long since been disposed of, but they could have gone for some continuity by showing this was where it had ended up. There’s an attempt to wed the concept to some sort of high-tech wizardry with the way the car is eventually controlled by a crystal with a link to beyond the grave, but I have to say it really is like putting lipstick on a pig. It is a very strained attempt to actually have a car which talks to its driver, but goes one further by having a hologram which, at times, sits in the passenger seat. There is no way this sits just ten years after the events of “Knight Rider 2000” – too much has happened. Sure, 2100 would have made more sense, but all in all, this is a DVD worth getting for anyone who wants to see how NOT to do a revival or a reboot.

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Monday, 19 June 2017

Knight Rider 2000 out on DVDIn the year 1991, when this pilot movie was from, the year 2000 was the future. Guns are banned and criminals are sent to cryo-prison where they are frozen for the duration of their sentences, to many, this doesn’t seem like much of a punishment. When the mayor is murdered with an illegal handgun, thought destroyed as part of dis-arming the Police, Michael Knight (David Hasselhoff) is brought out of retirement by Devon Miles (the late, great Edward Mulhare) to fight for justice one last time in “Knight Rider 2000”.

Michael returns to find KITT has been dismantled and the parts sold for medical research uses. Devon manages to recover all of KITT’s interior parts except one computer chip. The body is long gone, so KITT is rebuilt and installed in Michael’s classic 1957 Chevy. Michael teams up with former female cop Shawn McCormick (Susan Norman – later the character of Susan Buckman Merrick in Parenthood) who was shot in the head and now has the missing chip belonging to KITT embedded in her brain. With the help of KITT (once again voiced by William Daniels - as in the original series), Michael and Shawn must uncover the conspiracy in the Police Department.

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Monday, 12 June 2017

Star Maidens is back on DVDStar Maidens has found its way back on to DVD, courtesy of Simply Media. The title originally came to the home market back in 2005 through the now-defunct Delta Home Entertainment, but it’s enough of a curiosity that copies of that version still command a good price, so there’s logic in bringing it back into the foreground once more. It was originally shown as a regional opt-out in some ITV regions (HTV had it, ATV didn’t – which is why I got to saw an episode or two when I was in Wales at the time).  Popping up here and there between 1976 and 1978, it’s classified as an Anglo-German production, with a take on a planet whose dominant sex is female. This is something which The Two Ronnies would do their own version of in their serial “The Worm That Turned” in 1980, in which women rule the Britain of 2012, and male and female gender roles are completely reversed.

So, here’s your chance to get something in for late night schlock sessions in good company, with all 13 half-hour episodes in a twin-DVD digitally remastered set.  There’s plenty of reasons for Cult TV appreciators to pick up a copy as it stars Gareth Thomas, three years before he played Blake in the Blake’s 7. As per the previous DVD release, it also contains a bonus interview with Gareth, weighing in at a very respectable 34 minutes and covers much of his career, but with a focus on Star Maidens.

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Monday, 05 June 2017

1990 - Series 2 out on DVDFollowing on from the release of 1990 Series 1 earlier in the year, here we are already with the second and final series now on the shelves to complete this compelling story. Wilfred Greatorex described the format as "Nineteen Eighty-Four plus six" and details Jim Kyle’s (Edward Woodward) fight against a corrupt government in a disturbing then-future Britain, devoid of rights of any kind, in a world which is heading in the direction of the worst nightmares foretold by Orwell and Huxley . It is as relevant today as when it first aired, and is something a lost gem for Cult TV appreciators to get their hands on.

For those of you familiar with what has happened previously in this dystopian vision from 1977-8, here’s what’s changed between runs. Kyle’s actions at the end of the last series mean that Dan Mellor is no longer the Home Secretary, replaced by Kate Smith (Yvonne Mitchell), who Skardon (Robert Lang) sees as a threat. Delly Lomas and Henry Tasker have been moved away, to be replaced in one swoop by an old flame of Kyle’s, Lynn Blake (Lisa Harrow), put there to keep Kyle on a leash. And Kyle no longer has ‘Tiny’ Greaves as his editor – he’s gone to the ‘Alcoholics’ Laundry’ and been replaced by Tom Doran (Clive Swift) who now rather weakly fills his boots, he’s not much into putting the cat amongst he pigeons.

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Wednesday, 31 May 2017
Rockliffe's Babies - out now on DVD

Seven trainee CID officers based in London tackle some tough cases and an even tougher boss in this BBC police drama series from the 1980s. Sgt Alan Rockcliffe (Ian Hogg – “Hitler: The Rise of Evil”, Doctor Who “Ghost Light”) can be the most charming and supportive leader, but if you make a mistake or catch him on a bad day, he will come down on you like a ton of bricks! Can the rookies solve enough cases to win promotion, or will they crack in the process?

Running for just two seasons (three if you include the spin-off series Rockcliffe’s Folly, not included here), Rockcliffe’s Babies quickly introduces us to the trainees, though interestingly we do not meet Rockcliffe himself until the end of episode one. They are a real mixed bag, with varied backgrounds and skillsets that - when pulled together - make a great team; sometimes, however, the PCs bicker and fragment, and that is when things do not run quite as smoothly, much to their skipper’s chagrin.

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Monday, 29 May 2017

The Brothers - Series 5 out on DVDThe Brothers as part of the Cult TV landscape? In the 1970s this Sunday night drama about a road haulage company was, ah-hem, something of a ‘juggernaut’ in the ratings. After four seasons, the show needed a lift, so colourful characters were brought in or given greater prominence via Cult TV stalwarts Colin Baker (the sixth Doctor Who), Kate O'Mara (who would later cross paths again with Colin in his Time Lord regeneration as the Rani) and Mike Pratt (Randall in the original Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased)). They complicated the world of the Hammond family, so they are now nowhere near as cosy as they had been. They face an uncertain future with power struggles for the control of the family business, ill health, new additions to the family, and having to face the consequences of their own personal vices and demons.

The Brothers: The Complete Series 5, contains all 13 episodes from Spring 1975 of this reignited format, created by N J Crisp (Dixon of Dock Green) and Gerard Glaister (Dr Finlay’s Casebook). Doctor Who aficionados will be able to see why Colin Baker gained nationwide fame and notoriety, and if this is this is the nature of your interest, this is an ideal jumping-in point. Although his Paul Merroney character was much-talked about in Series 4, he was actually only seen in a handful of episodes (“Partings” - Episode 4.5, “Hit and Miss” – 4.7, “Public Concern” – 4.8, “A Bad Mistake” – 4.12, “The Fall Guy” – 4.13). Series 5 is where he becomes an unmissable core of the proceedings.

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Sunday, 07 May 2017

Born Free - out now on dual format Blu-ray and DVDBased on a true story and book by Joy Adamson, “Born Free” is the story of a married couple who raise an orphaned lion cub to adulthood and then attempt to prepare the tamed animal for release into the Kenyan wilderness. Virginia McKenna (“A Town Like Alice”) and Bill Travers (“Ring of Bright Water”) star as Joy and George Adamson, and the film won a couple of Oscars thanks to John Barry’s fantastic score and closing credits song sung by Matt Monro.

Treading a careful line between realism and sentimentality, the movie sucks you in with countless shots of cute and majestic animals that interact with the Adamsons like they are domestic cats or dogs. Anyone with a household pet will delight in seeing Elsa the lion cub play, destroy furniture, steal food and bond with her keepers. It is a relationship that cannot last because an adult lion cannot be controlled, and therein lies the film’s central theme.

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