dvd and blu-ray

brewsters-millions-blu-rayThe 1985 comedy stars Richard Pryor as a struggling minor league baseball player who comes into a small fortune. However, there is one catch. To earn the entire estate Montgomery Brewster (Pryor) must spend $30 million within 30 days to inherit $300 million. He must not accumulate any assets, and he is also barred from telling anyone the truth about his increasingly odd behavior.

While director Walter Hill‘s film may never be quite as funny as it should be, Brewster’s Millions does deliver some wacky hijinx with Monty’s spending sprees, his interactions with his teammates and best friend (an underutilized John Candy), and the various forces working against him. Lonette McKee also stars as his accountant/love interest.

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Split

by Cap'n Carrot on May 19, 2017 · 0 comments

in Film

split-blu-rayWhen all is said and done I’m less interested in Split than the movie it may eventually lead to (a true sequel to the writer/director’s best film). That said, M. Night Shyamalan‘s film is easily the best thing he’s created in more than a decade (although given the level of crap he’s put out over that time period that’s hardly a high bar to clear).

Set in an universe Shyamalan once said he had no interest in returning to, James McAvoy stars as a schizophrenic with at least 24 distinct personalities who kidnaps three teenage girls (Anya Taylor-Joy, Haley Lu Richardson, and Jessica Sula) to feed the darkest of his personalities referred to only as “The Beast.” For at least three-fourths of its running time the movie lacks the tension it should, partially because we’re unsure how seriously to take McAvoy’s character, partially because Shyamalan wants to hide aspects of the man for as long as possible, and partially because the script jumps around a bit too much rather than staying focused on the girls’ dilemma.

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Vixen: The Movie

by Cap'n Carrot on May 9, 2017 · 0 comments

in Film

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Vixen: The Movie collects all the episodes from the two-season run of the animated web series and puts them together in a single film. As each season has an ongoing arc where one short leads directly into the next, the flow works fairly well cut together as a single film. The story stars Megalyn Echikunwoke as Mari McCabe who discovers the animal totem left to her by a family she never knew has the power to grant her strength and abilities of an animal for a short period of time.

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the-edge-of-seventeen-blu-rayNadine’s (Hailee Steinfeld) life is falling apart. Her only real friend (Haley Lu Richardson) has begun dating her brother (Blake Jenner) which has only caused the outspoken high school student to become more the anti-social. Her new refuge in the storm that is her life is an equally sarcastic teacher (Woody Harrelson), who likes the student more than he lets on.

Written and directed by Kelly Fremon Craig, The Edge of Seventeen focuses on the emotional tumult of a teenager’s life leading to an honest, and sometimes quite funny, film. Steinfeld balances the protagonist’s frayed emotional state with aplomb in the story of a troubled young woman that is still hopeful even as Nadine swerves closer and closer to the edge.

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5-film-gangster-collectionWhat the hell is Gangster Squad doing on this set? The 2013 film wastes a talented cast on this idiotic take on a 50s cop (Josh Brolin) attempting to take down Mickey Cohen (Sean Penn). What a piece of shit. The rest of this collection is actually quite good, making you wonder who decided to try and polish this turd by putting in in their company.

Ben Affleck‘s The Town is the second-weakest entry in the set, but the look at Boston bank robbers is at least occasionally compelling. While flawed, 2001’s Training Day is worth a look for the performances of Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke as the older detective introduces his new partner to his world.

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Pinocchio

by Cap'n Carrot on February 14, 2017 · 0 comments

in Film

pinocchio-blu-rayAdapted from Carlo Collodi’s The Adventures of Pinocchio, Walt Disney’s second animated film features a morality tale about a young puppet brought to life who struggles to learn lessons about right and wrong. Helping him, but not always being successful, is Jiminy Cricket who is drafted into service as Pinocchio‘s conscience by the Blue Fairy who instills life in the marionette after answering the fondest wish of his creator Gepetto. If Pinocchio can prove himself brave, truthful, and unselfish, he may become a real boy, but before that can happen he’ll make a few wrong turns along the way.

Paroled from the Disney Vault, Pinocchio is re-released on Blu-ray as part of the new Signature Series. Extras include all the previously-released features (behind-the-scenes featurettes, storyboards, deleted scenes, and more) along with a handful of new short featurettes on the film, music, and Pleasure Island, and a vintage black-and-white cartoon.

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The King and I

by Cap'n Carrot on February 6, 2017 · 0 comments

in Film

the-king-and-i-dvdRe-released on DVD, 1956’s The King and I brought the Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II musical to the big screen in CinemaScope starring Deborah Kerr as schoolteacher Anna Leonowens who instructs more than just her students when she takes a job teaching the children of King Mongkut (Yul Brynner). Winning five Academy Awards (including a Best Actor Oscar for Brynner), the film holds up.

As has been stated in other corners of the Internet, the DVD version of the film is much crisper and cleaner than the Blu-ray release (where lighting and color are both inconsistent). Fans who don’t own the 50th Anniversary DVD should certainly think about adding this to their collection for the music, Brynner’s performance, and an impressive amount of extras.

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For the Love of Spock

by Cap'n Carrot on January 4, 2017 · 0 comments

in Film

for-love-of-spock-dvdBegun before his father’s death as part of Star Trek‘s 50th Anniversary, Adam Nimoy takes a look at Leonard Nimoy‘s life and career, most notably his role as Spock. Including interviews from a wide swath of new and classic Trek actors, Nimoy interviews William Shatner, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols, Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Simon Pegg, and Zoe Saldana, along with famous fans of Star Trek including Jim Parsons, Jason Alexander, and Neil deGrasse Tyson.

Although it doesn’t go into much depth about Nimoy’s life or his career, there are some nice anecdotes here and some fun classic stills and footage from his early career. Fans of Star Trek should enjoy themselves.

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freemaker-adventures-blu-ray-season-oneSet between the events of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, the animated LEGO Star Wars series follows the misadventures of a family of mechanics whose youngest member discovers a connection to the Force and accepts the responsibility of keeping the fragments of a powerful weapon out of the hands of the Emperor (Trevor Devall).

Most of the series focuses on the trouble young Rowan (Nicolas Cantu) gets his older siblings Zander (Eugene Byrd) and Kordi (Vanessa Lengies) into while helping a Jedi (who is secretly a Sith) find and collect the fragments of the Kyber Saber.

Collected on DVD and Blu-ray, extras include two short featurettes on the Freemakers and their salvage business. Highlights of the season include the Freemakers on Hoth, a trip to the Imperial Museum on Naboo, and getting dragged into a Wookiee rescue mission.

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Gleason

by Cap'n Carrot on December 14, 2016 · 0 comments

in Film

gleason-dvdOriginally intended as a video diary for Steve Gleason‘s unborn son, director Clay Tweel takes audiences along for the ride on the heart-wrenching journey of Gleason’s slow decline after being diagnosed with Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Going from a local football hero who helped rejuvenate the New Orleans Saints football team in the season following Hurricane Katrina to a man fighting to speak, move, and even breathe on his own is often difficult to watch. Refusing to give in, Gleason and his wife Michel continue to fight the incurable degenerative disease every step of the way including forming their own foundation to support others in need.

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