Have you been neglectful in completing your Christmas shopping this year? You still have a few days to buy for that movie lover in your life, and the studios have a few interesting new titles on tap, including one of the best films of the year.
Here’s the Blu-ray release slate for the week:
- ‘Big Tits Zombie‘ (FUNimation)
- ‘Blackthorn‘ (Magnolia)
- ‘Catch .44‘ (Starz/Anchor Bay)
- ‘Colombiana‘ (Sony)
- ‘Dolphin Tale (Combo Pack)‘ (Warner Brothers)
- ‘Dolphin Tale – 3D‘ (Warner Brothers)
- ‘A Farewell to Arms (1932)‘ (Kino)
- ‘Futurama: Volume 6‘ (20th Century Fox)
- ‘Glee: The 3D Concert Movie‘ (20th Century Fox)
- ‘Heaven’s Lost Property: Complete Season 1‘ (FUNimation)
- ‘Heaven’s Lost Property: Complete Season 1 (Limited Edition)‘ (FUNimation)
- ‘Margin Call‘ (Lionsgate)
- ‘Midnight in Paris‘ (Sony)
- ‘The Moon in the Gutter‘ (Cinema Libre)
- ‘Mysteries of Lisbon‘ (Music Box Films)
- ‘Nothing Sacred‘ (Kino)
- ‘Straw Dogs (2011)‘ (Sony)
- ‘Underworld: The Essential Collection‘ (Sony)
- ‘Warrior‘ (Lionsgate)
For all of his personal failings and general artistic decline over the last couple of decades, Woody Allen still manages to stumble onto a good idea once every few years or so. ‘Midnight in Paris‘ is easily his best film in ages, and one of the most delightful movies released this year.
With a hot-button topic (the country’s economic crisis), very favorable reviews, and a top-flight cast featuring the likes of Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons, Paul Bettany and Stanley Tucci, ‘Margin Call‘ seems like it should have secured a wide release and a promotional push for Oscar consideration. Instead, the movie virtually disappeared in limited release and is sneaking onto video this week. That’s too bad. It sounds interesting.
I recall how much Luke raved about the MMA movie ‘Warrior‘ when it was released earlier this year. The film also received a lot of praise elsewhere for the performances of stars Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton, but then it bombed at the box office. I blame that on the trailers, which made the movie look like a really formulaic ‘Rocky’ knock-off. I think people got their fill of that with ‘The Fighter‘. (I know I sure did.)
‘Mysteries of Lisbon‘ is the final film from Chilean-French director Raoul Ruiz, who passed away shortly after completing it this year. The movie is a 4 1/2 hour epic about a 19th Century orphan’s search for his origins, and is frequently described with words like “sumptuous,” “engrossing” and “breathtaking.” While I’m sure that this isn’t light entertainment, it may also be rewarding for those willing to make time for it.
‘Blackthorn‘ has an interesting premise. The film presumes that an elderly Butch Cassidy (Sam Shepard) survived his standoff with the Bolivian army and has been living in seclusion for decades, until a young bandit seeks his help for one last adventure. The movie received mixed-to-favorable reviews. I don’t know that I’d risk a blind purchase, but a rental might be in order.
In comparison to these, the week’s major studio releases seem like a dull lot. ‘Colombiana‘ is the latest girl-power action movie that would have us believe that an 80-pound woman (Zoë Saldana) with frail twigs for arms can beat up hordes of men three to four times her size. ‘Straw Dogs‘ is the unnecessary and unwanted remake of a Sam Peckinpah classic. ‘Dolphin Tale‘ is disposable feel-good family fluff. And the ‘Glee‘ concert movie is something that absolutely no one (not even ‘Glee’ fans) had the slightest interest to see. You can get ‘Dolphin Tale’ in 3D, but not the ‘Glee’ concert.
The only catalog title of the week that catches my attention is Kino’s release of the 1932 adaptation of ‘A Farewell to Arms‘, starring Gary Cooper and Helen Hayes.
Do you plan to pick up any of these last-minute titles for yourself or for gifts?