dvd and blu-ray

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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The Lobster

by Cap'n Carrot on December 12, 2016 · 0 comments

in Film

the-lobster-dvdTaking place is an odd world where being single is apparently the only crime, David (Colin Farrell) checks into a hotel where he is given 45 days to find a partner or face being transformed into an animal for the remainder of his existence. Part metaphor about the pressures society puts on single people to find a mate, and part wacky adventure, The Lobster is an unusual film with a deadpan (and more than a little bleak) sense of humor and a very unconventional view of love.

The first-half of the film, taking place within the hotel, works quite well as David and the other singles (Jessica Barden, Angeliki Papoulia, John C. Reilly, and Ben Whishaw) fumble at finding enforced couplehood. The second-half of the film involving David’s adventures with the equally hard-line single exiles where he finds forbidden love (Rachel Weisz, who also narrates) may not be as strong but still delivers its share of humorous and tragic moments. Available on Blu-ray and DVD, the only extras included are a digital copy of the movie and a single behind-the-scenes featurette.

[Lionsgate, Blu-ray $24.99 / DVD $12.96]

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lo-and-behold-reveries-of-the-connected-world-dvdWerner Herzog‘s new documentary takes viewers on a journey through the Internet. With stops as its birthplace and interviews with creators and early users, Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World also examines current uses for the tool in robotics and automobiles as well as the voyeuristic and bullying aspects fed by the anonymity of its users (in one of the documentary’s most emotional interviews).

The journey also makes a stop in Green Bank, West Virginia where all transmissions are restricted by the law and at a hospital for Internet addiction. Looking further the film also discusses solar flares, hackers and internet security, dreams, missions to Mars, and the possibility of artificial intelligence. While not as cohesive as I’d like at times, nonetheless Herzog delivers a fascinating historical journey on the Internet and how it has affected humanity, for both good and ill, since its creation. Like it or not, it’s firmly woven into our daily life, and Herzog pulls up the rug to show both its more troubling aspects as well as where it might lead us in the future.

[Magnolia Home Entertainment, $17.99]

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Green Room

by Cap'n Carrot on December 5, 2016 · 0 comments

in Film

green-room-blu-rayNotable mainly for its cast including a pair of Star Trek actors (Anton Yelchin and Patrick Stewart), Green Room is your basic wrong place, wrong time thriller when a broke band stumbles on a murder in the green room of a remote Neo-Nazi bar in the Northwest. With the help of a witness (Imogen Poots) to the murder, the band (Yelchin, Alia Shawkat, Joe Cole, and Callum Turner) barricade themselves in the green room in an attempt to hold off the inevitable as the club’s owner (Stewart) rounds up some of the gang’s less-savory types to clean-up the situation.

Writer/director Jeremy Saulnier delivers a fairly tense thriller featuring a cast of damaged individuals fighting for their lives against some pissed off Neo-Nazis. Other than Yelchin’s bassist, I’m not sure there’s a good person on-screen which means we’re interested to see what happens to the dickish rockers but not necessarily invested in rooting for or against them making it out alive. Stweart’s casting is intriguing as brains behind the outfit (although it’s fair to say he’s slumming it here).

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The First Monday in May

by Cap'n Carrot on November 30, 2016 · 0 comments

in Film

first-monday-in-may-dvdThe subject of Andrew Rossi proves to be more fascinating the the movie itself. Following the near-year-long process of creating The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s most attended fashion exhibition in history, “China: Through The Looking Glass,” the highlights of the documentary are the exhibits themselves while the behind-the-scenes of time and budget constraints, the jockeying of celebrity attendees (without ever naming names), battles with China of the historical (not modern) nature of the exhibit, the struggle to pay the headline act, and the actual design of the various pieces in the exhibits aren’t explored in much more than superficial detail. Like much of the fashion it highlights, it’s great to look at but doesn’t always have much to say.

As a snapshot into a world most won’t ever see personally, The First Monday in May is interesting (if never all that compelling) look at some of the work that went into The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s most profitable exhibit. Available on DVD and On-Demand.

[Magnolia Home Entertainment, $14.99]

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Kubo and the Two Strings

by Cap'n Carrot on November 28, 2016 · 0 comments

in Film

kubo-and-the-two-stringsThe latest from stop-motion studio Laika is their best yet. Centered around a young boy named Kubo (Art Parkinson) known in the local village for his tremendous storytelling ability where his origami creations spring to life, the adventure gets started in earnest when Kubo learns that the stories passed down from his mother (Charlize Theron) about an evil Moon King (Ralph Fiennes) are all true. To save himself and stand-up to his grandfather, Kubo will have to complete the unfinished quest which destroyed his father.

In a year without a heavyweight favorite for best animated feature Kubo and the Two Strings makes a strong play for the title. Undeniably visually stunning, it’s the strength of its story that separate Kubo from some of Laika’s previous releases. Available on Blu-ray and DVD, extras include a pair of short featurettes on the film’s myth and the worldwide enterprise to make the film, a six-part behind-the-scenes making-of featurette, and commentary by director Travis Knight.

[Universal Studios Home Entertainment, Blu-ray $34.98 / DVD $29.98]

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Sausage Party

by Cap'n Carrot on November 22, 2016 · 0 comments

in Film

sausage-party-blu-rayThis movie is fucked up. Offering us a glimpse into the lives on anthropomorphic food and other assorted items in a grocery store who sing about the promised land after being bought by god-like humans, Sausage Party follows the misadventures of a hot dog named Frank (Seth Rogen) and his friends (Michael Cera, Kristen Wiig, David Krumholtz, Edward Norton, and Salma Hayek) who discover the truth about what really happens to food in the kitchen. Wrong in (mostly) all the right ways, it has to be seen to be believed.

Offering an inspired amount of cursing and obvious jokes (the bagel doesn’t get along with the lavash, the douche is, well, a real douche) along with several genuinely funny moments, the script by Kyle Hunter, Ariel Shaffir, Rogen, and Evan Goldberg gets too infatuated with sexual innuendo at times (and ignores the inevitable truth of what will happen to all the characters), but while it lasts Sausage Party delivers an animated experience unlike anything you’ve seen before on the big screen.

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Anthropoid

by Cap'n Carrot on November 17, 2016 · 0 comments

in Film

anthropoid-blu-rayBased on the true events of Operation Anthropoid, the historical thriller tells the story of the assassination attempt on Reinhard Heydrich by Exile Czechoslovak soldiers in Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia during WWII. What begins as a two-man suicide mission by Jozef Gabčík (Cillian Murphy) and Jan Kubiš (Jamie Dornan) soon grows to include the remnants of the Czech resistance and a pair of young women (Charlotte Le Bon and Charlotte Le Bon) who will lose more than just their hearts to the cause.

After the action of Jozef and Jan’s arrival, the pair settle in for the long haul while bidding their time to take down the third highest-ranking Nazi and one of the leading minds behind the Final Solution. The script by director Sean Ellis and Anthony Frewin is a slow build to the film’s climactic scene inside Prague’s Orthodox Cathedral of Saints Cyril and Methodius. While the pacing might seem slow in spots, Ellis keeps the film moving and the payoff to the set-up is one of the more memorable action sequences of the year.

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