As the entire combined forces of North American geek culture descend on San Diego's Comic-Con this week, fear not; geekiness galore is to be found in this week's new releases! First up, pick up the eagerly anticipated extended version of a superhero fan favorite (Watchmen: Director's Cut), and watch as Henry Selick brings a Neil Gaiman fairytale to life -- in three dimensions (Coraline)! Sci-fi nerds should like the recut, feature-length pilot of a long-running series (Stargate SG-1: Children of the Gods), while French New Wave enthusiasts have a Jean-Luc Godard double feature, courtesy of Criterion (Made in USA, Two or Three Things I Know About Her). Finally, hearken back to the '80s with a hearty, "Yo, Joe!" (GI Joe: Season 1.1).
This week in horror, we've got good news and bad news. Here's the bad news first: The Haunting in Connecticut, a much ballyhooed flick "based on a true story," didn't really happen. The good news? You can find much fresher scares in a newly released Spanish import (2007's REC, which was remade into last year's Quarantine). Also new to shelves is a long-awaited comedy show (The State: The Complete Series), HBO's fabulous, fictionalized Grey Gardens (starring Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange), Mark Webber's directorial debut (Explicit Ills), and a Sienna Miller-Keira Knightley love triangle (The Edge of Love). And to top it off, a direct-to-DVD bonanza (National Lampoon's Van Wilder: Freshman Year, the Dennis Quaid vehicle Horsemen, and more)!
This week, we look at the Anne Hathaway's Best Actress-nominated drama Rachel Getting Married, Oliver Stone's tepid take on Dubya, W. and Samuel L. Jackson going psychotic (you know, just for a change) in Lakeview Terrace. Plus, Weeds: Season 3 and The Tudors: Season 2 arrive on DVD.
It's a genre lover's feast this week on DVD, but don't say we didn't warn you about those pesky rotten Tomatometers. First up? Alex Proyas's latest science fiction thriller, starring Nicolas Cage in a doomsday scenario (Knowing). Also new is a would-be franchise about super-powered humans on the lam from shady government types (Push, starring Chris Evans and Dakota Fanning). David S. Goyer tries his hand at an original story, resulting in silly, PG-13 horror (The Unborn), while one of our favorite '90s rappers gives directing a shot (A Day in The Life, filmed entirely in rhyme!). If all else fails, look backward to a handful of older titles getting a shiny new polish (Beau Geste, The Deep on Blu-ray). Dig in!
It's an interesting week for home video, and here's why; we've got new films from a celebrated cinematographer adapting a video game (Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun Li, directed by Andrejz Bartkowiak), a rap-rock front man doing a sensitive coming of age tale (The Education of Charlie Banks, directed by Fred Durst), an action veteran gunning for hire (12 Rounds, directed by Renny Harlin), and, well, Uwe Boll (Tunnel Rats). The week also features a recently unearthed film from comedy director Hal Ashby (Lookin' to Get Out, starring Jon Voight and Angelina Jolie in her first role) and an anthology film dedicated to the city of Tokyo, Japan (Tokyo!, directed by Michel Gondry, Joon-Ho Bong and Leos Carax). Last but not least, The Asylum gives us the highly anticipated sequel to their Transformers knock-off "mockbuster" (Transmorphers: The Fall of Man)!
There's something for everyone this week on DVD, starting with an Oscar-nominated animated documentary (Waltz with Bashir), a Jerry Bruckheimer-produced chick flick (Confessions of a Shopaholic), and a disappointing adaptation of a bestselling family fantasy (Inkheart, starring Brendan Fraser). Foreign film fanatics have a well-received import to watch (Alice's House, from Brazil), while an international cast can't save Steve Martin's latest slapstick (The Pink Panther 2). Criterion releases a French New Wave classic conundrum (Last Year at Marienbad on Blu-ray), Elle Fanning gets a star vehicle (Phoebe in Wonderland), we get twice the Crispin Glover than usual (Simon Says, in which he plays twin psychos), and Antonio Banderas and Morgan Freeman team up to show that "direct-to-DVD" doesn't always equal terrible (The Code, directed by Mimi Leder).
Are you ready for the return of Jason Voorhees (Marcus Nispel's rebooted Friday the 13th)? What about the latest adventures of Tyler Perry's most popular protagonist (Madea Goes to Jail) or the latest unnecessary direct-to-DVD sequel (The Cell 2)? If you're willing to go outside the mainstream, we've found a few rewarding titles (the Certified Fresh Cherry Blossoms, the documentary biopic Scott Walker 30 Century Man), while a wealth of cinematic enjoyment awaits those with Blu-ray players (Criterion's The Seventh Seal, Ghostbusters' 25th Anniversary Edition, and Lost Seasons 1 & 2). Read on to see what else is hitting shelves this week!
This week on DVD, celebrate the big screen heroics of two former movie heroes (Clint Eastwood in Gran Torino, Harrison Ford in Crossing Over) or watch Clive Owen and Naomi Watts do battle with an evil bank (Tom Tykwer's The International). If comedy is more your style, you can go low-brow (the cheerleading comedy Fired Up!) or worse: direct to DVD (the bowling comedy Strike! starring Tara Reid). Take a gamble on a twisty, stylized thriller about kidnapping and dysfunctional families (Nobel Son, starring Eliza Dushku and Alan Rickman) or take your chances with a critically panned race drama (Spinning into Butter, starring Sarah Jessica Parker). What'll it be?
This week on DVD catch up on a few big flicks you might have missed in theaters, including an Oscar-nominated suburban period piece by Sam Mendes (Revolutionary Road, starring Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio), a real-life tale of WWII heroism (Defiance, starring Daniel Craig and Liev Schreiber), and a sprawling look at dating and relationships in the age of Facebook (He's Just Not That Into You). If TV's your thing, pick up the latest seasons of your favorite shows (Weeds Season 4, Prison Break Season 4). And if you dare to go direct-to-DVD, plenty of titles await (Spring Breakdown, Anaconda 4, Direct Contact, Silent Venom).
Let's be honest, folks; when the Renee Zellweger - Harry Connick Jr. romantic comedy New In Town is the biggest title in new release, you know it's a direct-to-video kind of week. So why not embrace the DVD movie boom with a Crash-esque LA indie drama (Powder Blue, starring Jessica Biel and Forest Whitaker), a cult film in the making (Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus), an Elmore Leonard adaptation (Killshot, starring Mickey Rourke), or a cutesy romantic comedy about culture clash (Ramen Girl, starring and produced by Brittany Murphy)? High definition owners have a modern sci-fi classic to check out (Children of Men on Blu-ray). Read more inside!
This week we ask if a certain January box office hit about a portly security guard in a shopping mall will continue its reign of success on home video (Paul Blart: Mall Cop), ponder the reasons why Tom Cruise would ever play a German character with his real-life American accent (Valkryie), and dare to don 3D glasses to get limbs flying in our face in the comfort of our own home (My Bloody Valentine 3D). We're also morbidly curious to see erstwhile Jesus Jim Caviezel as an alien among Vikings (Outlander), see our favorite celeb geek cameos in a long-awaited comedy about Star Wars adoration (Fanboys), and get up close and personal with 2008's other vampire-related pop culture phenomenon (True Blood).
This week on DVD, Liam Neeson (you know, the veteran Irish actor who your grandmother thinks looks nice) opens a can of whoop ass on unsuspecting kidnappers, much to our delight (Taken), while Michael Sheen (you know, the esteemed Welsh star of such Oscar contenders as The Queen and Frost/Nixon) plays a medieval werewolf in love in a fantasy-action prequel (Underworld: Rise of the Lycans). Elsewhere, Richard Kelly is chuckling to himself as an unofficial sequel to his cult hit Donnie Darko hits shelves (S. Darko: A Donnie Darko Tale), A-listers visit the depths of Direct-To-DVD Land, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles squeeze a few bucks from our pocketbooks, and Trekkies get a cornucopia of new nerdy delights.
Award season armchair jockeys should check out a few notable Oscar and Golden Globe contenders this week, including David Fincher's visionary epic film about a man who ages backwards (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) and a romantic story for the older set (Last Chance Harvey). If your idea of an indie pixie dream girl is Michelle Williams, watch the remarkable actress in her latest (the micro-budgeted Wendy and Lucy, from the director of Old Joy). Smaller releases this week include a Bollywood kung fu pic (Chandni Chowk to China) and an urban comedy with a sci-fi twist (Frankenhood), though we've got our eye on Amazon's fan-targeted exclusive Twilight Blu-ray set. (The official Twilight charm bracelet -- sweet!) Read on for more.
This week, home video enthusiasts have all kinds of new flicks -- fresh and rotten -- to peruse, starting with a surprising comeback by former action hero Jean-Claude Van Damme (JCVD). Mainstream viewers can choose between a kiddie-canine comedy (Hotel for Dogs), a superficial chick flick (Bride Wars), and a poky horror remake (The Uninvited), though we'd recommend giving a pair of lesser-known, but better-reviewed films a chance (What Doesn't Kill You, Nothing But the Truth). For the daring crowd, we've got a pair of flicks that push the boundaries of taste (the Guillermo del Toro-produced While She Was Out, Criterion's In The Realm of The Senses) and lastly, a few throwback TV on DVD titles for anyone feeling nostalgic (X-Men: The Animated Series Vol. 1 & 2, Star Trek: The Original Series on Blu-ray).
Geeks of all stripes will find something to watch this week as a variety of titles make their way to DVD and Blu-ray, from a Battlestar Galactica prequel (Caprica, which debuts on television next year) to a pair of Oscar contenders (The Wrestler, Frost/Nixon) to fodder for horror hounds of all ages (Hellraiser on Blu-ray; the new slasher Laid to Rest). Also check out two different sorts of musical bio-pics (Notorious; Glass: A Portrait of Philip in Twelve Parts), a pair of auteurs, revisited (Henri-Georges Clouzot's The Wages of Fear -- Criterion Collection; Robert Rodriguez's Sin City on Blu-ray), and, well, your next guilty pleasure (Into the Blue 2: The Reef).
It's a light week for home video entertainment, but never fear -- RT on DVD is here! We'll kick things off with the biggest title of the week: Frank Miller's The Spirit, which had fans drooling with anticipation...until the stylized comic strip adaptation hit theaters. Better reviewed, but nonetheless controversial in its own right, is Kate Winslet's The Reader, which nabbed the British actress her first Academy Award but also drew the ire of critics thanks to its sensitive subject material. Horror fans will get a pleasant surprise with an indie creature feature (Splinter), while '80s enthusiasts should embrace a new eight-DVD set that combines the star power of Whoopi Goldberg, Drew Barrymore, and Jon Cryer (The Lost Collection). Fans of director Michel Gondry should check out his latest compilation of music videos and short films (Michel Gondry 2: More Videos). Finally, see if an overlooked science fiction flick holds up in High Def (The 13th Floor on Blu-ray).
This week's new releases include a few Hollywood takes on science fiction (Fox's remake of The Day The Earth Stood Still; the 1984 sequel 2010: The Year We Make Contact on Blu-ray), and a few that fall into the fantasy genre (Adam Sandler's Bedtime Stories; Jim Carrey in Yes Man, where he romances the 18-years younger Zooey Deschanel -- a middle-aged male fantasy if there ever was one). Awards-watchers have an Oscar-nominated film new to DVD (Doubt) and a new double-dip from a Coen brothers classic in the making (No Country for Old Men Collector's Edition). Read on for more!
Jai Ho it up with the DVD debut of Danny Boyle's multiple Oscar-winning film, Slumdog Millionaire! It's also your week to catch films you might have missed in theaters, from Jennifer Aniston's tale of puppy love (Marley & Me) to the latest heart-wrencher from Will Smith (Seven Pounds). Those who dare to go foreign will be justly rewarded with two well-reviewed imports (the French thriller Tell No One and the Spanish sci-fi Timecrimes), while art-house devotees have two remastered Wong Kar-Wai films to choose from (Happy Together and Fallen Angels). Horror fans have an octet of new flicks to check out (After Dark Horror Fest 8 Films to Die For)...and did we mention the sweet new Blu-ray that should be on the top of any philosophical cyberpunk's wishlist (The Matrix 10th Anniversary Blu-ray Digibook)?
It's a good week for Watchmen fans, as the highly anticipated animated short Tales of the Black Freighter (and the faux-documentary Under the Hood) arrive on shelves. Animation fans should also check out Disney's Certified Fresh adventure Bolt, which debuted on Blu-ray on Sunday but is available this week on DVD. Adrenaline junkies have a few titles to choose from, including the latest James Bond adventure (Quantum of Solace) and, in anticipation of the upcoming fourth film, The Fast & the Furious trilogy set. Indie audiences should look for Kristen Stewart's second star turn in two weeks, after last Saturday's Twilight DVD debut (The Cake Eaters), while classic movie buffs have their own delights to consider (Criterion's The 400 Blows on Blu-ray).
Not everyone is bound to give this week's DVD release of the vampire romance Twilight a second thought. But if you, like us, tore through Stephenie Meyer's Twilight novels (that would be Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, Breaking Dawn, and the unfinished Midnight Sun) within the span of a few days, barely stopping to eat, breathe, or sleep, inexplicably unable to pay attention at work or school thanks to an endless swarm of thoughts of Bella Swan and her vampire beloved --- dare we say his name? --- Edward Cullen...well, then you're going to need a little help deciding which of the various upcoming Twilight DVD and Blu-ray options you should pick up this Saturday (3/21). And did we mention the enormously enticing box sets that Summit has created for your viewing pleasure?? Twilight --it's like our own personal brand of heroin, only much, much more addictive.