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Entries in DVD (88)

Wednesday
Aug032016

New to DVD: April and the Extraordinary World

by Tim Brayton

As even the quickest look at a box office report shows, 2016 has been a great year for the popularity of animated films. But outside of the heavyweight American studio tentpoles, there have been genuine treasures that have still managed to slip through the cracks. Thus it's my pleasure to introduce to you the crackling Franco-Canadian-Belgian sci-fi fantasy April and the Extraordinary World, new to DVD this week, thanks to the endlessly wonderful folks at distributor GKIDS.

The film takes place in an alternate world where Emperor Napoleon III of France died in a lab explosion in 1870, just before our history had him falling from grace in the eyes of the French legislature; here, his son ascends as Napoleon IV and ushers in a bold new era of European diplomacy that manages to prevent both of the 20th Century's World Wars, but also results in an era of scientific stultification, meaning that by 1931, when the film proper begins, the world is still in an age of steam.

Here we meet young April, whose parents are working on a serum to prolong life...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jun022016

Streaming: J Edgar Drinking Games & Elizabeth's Golden Foreshadowing

Do you purchase or rent DVDs movies anymore or just wait for streaming -- however long that takes? If you do the following titles have emerged in the past week on Blu-Ray or DVD: The Finest Hours in which Chris Pine gets a man vs. ocean movie cuz Chris Hemsworth got one;  Gods of Egypt which is terrible but in so-bad-it's-great way; How to Be Single which is better than you'd think but way overstuffed but you should probably see it for another great performance variation on "the boyfriend" by Jake Lacy (he's got that market covered but he's so good at it with no two characters feeling like the same guy); Pride & Prejudice & Zombies which is fun for what it is if nothing more; also new are Race, Risen, Triple 9, and Zoolander 2

But on to the fun part, New to Streaming. Because, to quote the one and only Carrie Fisher:

Instant gratication takes too long.

Let's do our fun little freeze frame game on new streaming titles. The following films were frozen on one image completely at random to see what showed up. They're all new on either Netflix of Amazon Prime. Ready? Let's play!

J Edgar (2011) on Netflix

Charles Lindbergh. Lindbergh's baby has been kidnapped.

A fun drinking came while streaming J Edgar in five easy steps
1. Take a drink every time you wish Clint Eastwood wasn't terrified of color
2. Take a drink every time you wish Tom Stern would throw a damn light on the set for once
3. Take a drink every time you see bad old age makeup in closeup
4. Take a drink every time you're glad AMPAS dodged a bullet on this one and it's not part of Oscar history
5. Die of alcohol poisoning. 

Six Degrees of Separation (1993)

You said when artists dream they dream of money.
...I must be such an artist.

Love this movie. Stockard Channing was just sensational in it. (And what a great Best Actress year 1993 was)

Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007) and more after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
May192016

FYC: Kate Dickie and the Raw Emotion of "The Witch"

Out this week on blu-ray/dvd is Robert Eggers's The Witch. Warmly received by critics, but divisive for general audiences, the film is a marvel of craft and inescapable dread. But the film is more than its horror elements and immaculate period detail - at the center is a potent family tragedy as well-developed as any drama you'll seen this year. And the bruised soul of that tragedy is actress Kate Dickie.

Dickie stars as the matriarch of a Puritan family banished from their New England settlement in the 17th century. Her Katherine begins the film essentially wordless during the excommunication, then is defined by her off-screen sobs after the film's first punishments. Once Katherine collects herself, she quickly reveals herself to be a devout believer firmly planted in her role as wife and mother. As things quickly turn from bad to worse, her agony surges with authentic depth until she becomes willingly deluded by her own suffering.

Dickie's portrayal is a prime example of The Witch offering more than its horror contemporaries...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
May172016

10 questions for your new home viewing adventures

I expect honest answers in the comments! 

Newish to DVD/BluRay
The Boy -have you ever been scared of a doll? 
Deadpool - What did you think of that junkyard finale?
Dirty Grandpa - Do you think Robert de Niro feels any shame about his filmography or just laughs all the way to the bank? 
Janis: Little Girl Blue - Will Amy Adams will ever actually make that Janis Joplin bio and how many movies do we really need about the singer anyway? 
The Program - Ben Foster. Scary or sexy?
The Witch - Wouldst thou live deliciously?

Also new: Where to Invade Next, Captive, War & Peace (series), Theeb, Orange is the New Black Season 3

I am a boxer for the freedom of cinematic expression!
-Sergei Eisenstein (in Eisenstein in Guatanjuato)

Streaming
99 Homes - Was Michael Shannon robbed of an Oscar nom?
Eisenstein in Guanajuato - Have you ever seen a Peter Greenaway movie? (They're so bonkers and, nowadays at least, underappreciated. Including this one)
Hot Pursuit- Should Reese make more comedies or pursue Oscar #2 with more Wilds?
Humans S1 - Would you feel bad about having sex with a robot programmed to serve you since they can't really give consent? 

Also new: Tell Me You Love Me (S1), RegressionKindergarten Cop 2, Goosebumps

Tuesday
May032016

Newish to DVD & Streaming. What will you make me watch?

It's that time again. If you missed it in theaters or merely want to revisit here are some newish options from the past couple of weeks or just now.

New to DVD & BluRay

The Choice - In which Broadway's favorite bloody bloody musical star, Benjamin Walker, tries his hand at the Sparksverse and even an annoying catchphrase "bother me"
Jane Got a Gun - Does all the trouble that production had (director walk out / cast changes / delays) show up on screen? With Natalie Portman
Joy - Decide for yourself if JLaw deserved a fourth Oscar nomination for this drama about a female entrepeneur
Krampus - This horror flick got surprisingly good reviews. With Toni Collette & Adam Scott
A Royal Night Out -If Diary of a Teenage Girl had you intrigued about Bel Powley check out her other introduction. Co-starring ubiquitous Sarah Gadon
Son of Saul - This drama about a Hungarian sodderkomando who believes he's seen the body of his son among the latest executed is harrowing and it just won the Oscar, Hungary's second win in the category (after 80s arthouse hit Mephisto).

New to Streaming. VOTE!

I realized I haven't written up Crimes & Misdemeanors (1989) yet as commanded last time we did this but I shall and I'll be quicker this time since I'll have a second assignment breathing down its neck. Which film will we discuss? You choose!

 

Also new for May...
Amazon Prime: Benny and Joon, Bitter Moon, The Bounty, Bully, Code 46, Election, Ghost World, The Mod Squad, She's Having a Baby, Vice Versa, and several 007 films back again suddenly (make up your mind AP);
Netflix: PleasantvilleTo Catch a ThiefGreat Expectations, Just Friends, The Nutty Professor, The Replacements, and Things We Lost in the Fire

Friday
Apr222016

Every Dog Has Its Day: Iñárritu, 16 Years and 2 Directing Oscars Later

Eric here to discuss cinema’s currently-most-celebrated director, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu. As Nathaniel has noted previously, all six of Inarritu’s feature films have gotten Oscar attention in one way or another, and of course much has been written about his being the first filmmaker since 1950 to win the Best Director Oscar two years in a row. He's also just been named to the Time 100 "Icons" List.  So there’s no better time than to look back to Inarritu’s first feature, 2000’s Amores Perros, to see where he started and where he’s landed.  

Watching Amores Perros (2000) for the first time since its initial release, I was struck by how even at the start of his career, Inarritu picked extraordinarily difficult environments to shoot in.  The logistics for Amores Perros can’t have practically been much easier than the ones we are all sick of hearing about with The Revenant.  His debut feature has him shooting all over Mexico City (inarguably one of the world’s most chaotic cities), with a colossally large group of actors, and constructing a large-scale and crucially precise car wreck sequence that pays off to all three of the film’s narratives in different ways.  Plus throw in a lot of very difficult (and legally tricky) scenes with huge groups of dogs fighting, bleeding, and getting shot.  Inarritu’s self-masochism was alive and well from the very start. [More...]

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Mar292016

Newish Viewing: Concussion, Hateful 8, and Reader Poll

Here's what's new or newish for home viewing over the past two weeks for DVDs, BluRays, or Streaming. Now you can...

• see if the Pinkett-Smiths had any reason to be upset about the lack of Oscar interest in  Concussion (hint: no)
• stab your eyes out while watching Daddy's Home 
• find out if The Hateful Eight is Tarantino's worst (hint: yes)
• discover the stuff they left out of Pt 1 in order to make another billion with Hunger Games: Mockingjay Pt 2
• watch Juliet Stevenson be Mother Teresa in The Letters
• endure yet another Paranormal Activity movie because they will never stop making those
• use Point Break (2015)  discs for coasters because who needs a remake when Point Break (1991) is still such a knockout?!

READER'S CHOICE STREAMING
We kicked off the biweekly reader's choice series with Gattaca (1997) and Cruel Intentions (1999). Time for another on Wednesday April 6th only I'm forcing a move away from the 1990s this time via these options, all new to streaming.

 

Also New To Streaming
AMAZON PRIME: Amistad, Bananas, Batman, The Big Lebowski, The Dead Zone, Death Wish, Dr T & The Women, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Lars and the Real Girl, Men in Black II, Payback, The Peacemaker, Rescue Dawn,  Ronin, You've Got MailNETFLIX: Best in Show, Boogie Nights, Chaplin, Charlie & The Chocolate Factory, Cujo, Deep Impact, Explorers, Finders Keepers, The Holiday, The Hunting Ground, Looking for Richard, My Girl, Mystic River, The Next Best Thing, The Perfect Storm, The Phantom, The Promised Land, Rising Sun, The Running Man, Say It Isn't So, Shawshank Redemption, Scrooged, Shelter, Something's Gotta Give, Sunset Blvd, Under the Same Moon, V For Vendetta