Independence Day: Resurgence (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

Independence Day Resurgence 4K Blu-rayIndependence Day: Resurgence is one of those sequels that never needed nor should have been made.  So why was it? That’s a very good question.  Considering they couldn’t even lure Will Smith back for it should have been the nail in the coffin.  However, it wasn’t.  Not even Jeff Goldblum nor Liam Hemsworth can keep this ship from crashing in this one.  Sadly it’s all about greed here.  Fox knew the uneducated would come out in droves to support the film that took the sic-fi community by storm 20 years ago.  And what’s more patriotic than seeing a summer action movie circa the Fourth of July holiday?  That’s a rhetorical question.  So what follows is a review of a crappy sequel to the highly heralded sci-fi classic, Independence Day (see my 20th anniversary review of the 4K Ultra HD set here and Aaron’s Blu-ray coverage here). Continue reading ‘Independence Day: Resurgence (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)’

Forgotten Friday Flick – “Dead Heat”

Forgotten Friday FlickThe WhySoBlu gang podcast dissected all things horror comedy this week which brings to mind a little past hidden gem well worth bringing up for more than mere movie nostalgia – welcome to Forgotten Friday Flick!  Today we’re heading into odd genre territory for an unconventional tale of cops, killers and the undead.  Mix in the intrigue of an old fashioned detective story, the banter of a buddy/buddy movie and add a pinch of reanimation and you’ve got one of the funniest and strangest flicks ever made.  “Hey, you’re hurt!”  “Lady, I’m f@cking dead!” – it’s time for some…Dead Heat!

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DVD Roundup – 2 New Indie Titles (DVD Reviews)

DVD roundupThis week we’re going international for the DVD bin scouring by checking out two tall tales from China that cover everything from the supernatural to the super skilled – martial arts style that is!  Not sure if these are worth the money – we got you covered!  Scan our DVD Roundup for the critical skinny on Phantom of the Theatre and Judge Archer below!  (Again, tech specs provided at the end for those who demand DVD details!)


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The Regrettable Return Of ‘Jack Reacher’

jack reacher 2 thumbIt is a good thing author Lee Child supports the casting of Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher, the lead character in Child’s expansive book series, as there are still 18 more books to make up for this disappointing second feature. Following the goodwill created by the initial 2012 flick, Jack Reacher: Never Go Back finds Cruise out of his depth, given a poorly developed story full of clichés, stock characters and a general lack of excitement. Where Cruise’s previous collaborator, writer/director Christopher McQuarrie, was able to match a serious mystery with some well-handled wit and mild commentary on gun culture, this Edward Zwick-directed entry truly seems to place Reacher in cruise control.

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Encapsulated Movie Reviews – Five New Indie Titles (And One Short!)

Encapsulated Movie ReviewsSorry film freaks – only a meager five flicks for critical dissection this time out, but I also helmed a premiere this week (Go The Harvesters!) and there’s a short film review here too, so cinematically it’s a push.  In any case five very different movies below including a political one-man show, a romantic comedy, a cannabis themed terror tale, a bloody, funny, scary western and an avant-garde chiller thriller – odd is indeed the order of the day!  Check out the Encapsulated Movie Reviews of Michael Moore in TrumpLand, It Had To Be You, Halloweed, In A Valley Of ViolenceTabloid Vivant and short Pigskin below!

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Independence Day: Resurgence (3D Blu-ray Review)

independence day 2 coverI have both nostalgic love and admiration for the 1996 blockbuster Independence Day. The film turned Will Smith into a superstar, provided Irwin Allen disaster movie-like thrills on a grand scale, and delivered a fun sci-fi alien invasion flick. It was also earnest, heartfelt and audacious. 20 years later we have Independence Day: Resurgence, which ups the ante from a visuals standpoint, but finds itself lost when it comes to channeling what made the first film special. The film was a box office disappointment this past summer, but now has a Blu-ray release to deliver the final word.

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Jack Reacher Will ‘Never Go Back’ To The Dating Scene (Movie Review)

Jack Reacher Never Go BackJack Reacher is one of those films I had to go back and revisit to not only freshen up going into the premiere of Jack Reacher Never Go Back, but make sure I liked it too.  I honestly could not remember as I hadn’t seen the first film since 2013 when I reviewed the Blu-ray here.  Fret not!  Despite only having three action scenes to write home about I enjoyed it quite a lot.  I get so confused with the Mission Impossible films that I had to distance myself from them to get into the whole psyche of who the character of Jack Reacher really is.  I’m all good now and ready to tackle the second entry in the Jack Reacher film franchise made possible only because the first flick grossed $200 million worldwide.  That’s not a whole lot of money, but Paramount felt comfortable in it nonetheless so who am I to argue. Continue reading ‘Jack Reacher Will ‘Never Go Back’ To The Dating Scene (Movie Review)’

‘Moonlight’ Transcends Darkness Of A Troubled Life (Movie Review)

moonlight thumbFor all the struggles we watch the main character face in Moonlight, the film presents a story that is incredibly compelling to watch. Thanks to several confident performances and a cinematic presentation that ably works to invite the viewer in, here is a film that uses a triptych storytelling device to great depict how one develops an identity. Various circumstances, locations and identifiers provide a setup. However, despite witnessing a truly personal story being told, it manages to feel incredibly rounded. It makes the setup practically beside the point, as Moonlight finds a way to say a lot with a little.

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The Origins Of ‘Ouija’ Prove To Be Worthwhile (Movie Review)

ouija-origin-of-evil-3After making $100+ million on a $5 million budget with the first film, we now have a prequel – Ouija: Origins of Evil. While it provided me with one of my favorite review titles, the first Ouija left almost no impression, aside from being one of the worst films of 2014. “No one will remember Ouija,” is what I claimed in regards to the first film and money aside, I don’t think I’m all that far off. It actually benefited this prequel, as my lack of much recall for the first probably allowed me more of a chance to enjoy this Mike Flanagan-directed entry that digs into the mythology established by the first, but goes an entirely different direction in terms of style. As a result, here’s a horror film arriving just in time for Halloween that is a worthwhile (if a bit silly) watch.

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Nerve (Blu-ray Review)

NerveNerve was a film I kinda wrote off last summer.  The trailer played with a quite a few films I went to see, but it looked like one that gave away everything and it seemed to skew younger than I’d be interested in.  Not that an aspect like that would keep me from seeing something, just in terms of my immediate need to catch it.  It did slightly catch my eye.  However, upon release, the film actually managed to garner some surprisingly positive reviews, even managing to score fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.  A budget doesn’t seem to be available, but Nerve couldn’t have cost too much money and looks to have made some decent bank if it indeed had a really low budget.  I didn’t quite get out of the house to see it in the theater, but here it is on Blu-ray and I’m more than willing to check it out.  Lionsgate has this one dropping on October 25th. Continue reading ‘Nerve (Blu-ray Review)’

Ice Age: Collision Course (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

Ice-Age-Collision-CourseConfession time.  I’ve never seen any of the Ice Age films before.  The saga began back in 2002 when I was still a wee lad in college.  At that age, they looked too kiddie for my refined early 20s taste and certainly weren’t even looking the slightest Pixar-esque.  Now, its 14 years since that first film and I have two children.  I once tried to put the first film on for them and they seemingly didn’t care much for it (I was doing something else, no paying attention).  They claim to have seen one at a cousin’s house and it was all right. So, what I’m trying to convey here going into the review for this fifth excursion into the Ray Romano/Dennis Leary franchise, is that my experience and knowledge on these films is very minimal.  If I’m not getting a reference, or for some reason enjoy this too much, then there is my disclaimer as to why. Continue reading ‘Ice Age: Collision Course (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)’

Free Horror Premiere “The Harvesters” in L.A. Tomorrow 10/18!

harvesters squareReady for a little LA premiere action – FREE for the little guy?  Well, for those in the city of angels tomorrow Tuesday, Oct. 18 get ready for a little frightful film fun with the premiere of the new horror film The Harvesters – and everyone is invited!

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‘Don’t Breathe’ While You Read This Blu-ray Announcement

Dont Breathe TNFrom director Fede Alvarez and the twisted minds behind Evil Dead comes the terrifying, critically acclaimed film, Don’t Breathe, debuting on digital November 8 and Blu-ray and DVD November 29 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Hailed as “the best American horror film in twenty years” (Jim Hemphill, FILMMAKER MAGAZINE) and Certified Fresh (87%) on Rotten Tomatoes, the film debuted at #1 at the box office and remained in the top spot for two weekends in a row. Starring Jane Levy (Evil Dead), Dylan Minnette (Goosebumps), Daniel Zovatto (It Follows) and Stephen Lang (Avatar), the film follows a group of thieves who break into a blind man’s home thinking they’ll get away with the perfect crime. When the blind man reveals a dark side, the trio quickly discovers they were dead wrong. Continue reading ‘‘Don’t Breathe’ While You Read This Blu-ray Announcement’

Underworld &Resident Evil: Afterlife Debuts on 4K Ultra HD This Winter!

UnderworldI’m very excited about this news today!  Just as new installments in two iconic film franchises are hitting theaters, earlier films in their series are getting a 4K Ultra HD with High Dynamic Range (HDR) upgrade when Sony Pictures Home Entertainment debuts the original UNDERWORLD on December 27 and RESIDENT EVIL: AFTERLIFE on January 17.  Each 4K Ultra HD release will also include all the bonus materials from the earlier Blu-ray releases. Continue reading ‘Underworld &Resident Evil: Afterlife Debuts on 4K Ultra HD This Winter!’

ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY Character Posters Are Here!

Rogue One Jyn THUMBYou know right after that trailer dropped last week for ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY, your next thought immediately was “When will we get character posters and how many?” Well, you only had to wait for the weekend to end to be satisfied.  They’re here and they’re definitely character posters for ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY.  Interestingly, Darth Vader was not given his own poster.  I don’t know how the dark lord of the Sith feels about that, but I dig it.  He snuck onto the main poster for the film, and really, we already know the guy.  While the movies of his era didn’t get character posters, he’s certainly had his fill of them compared to his other colleagues in the universe.  Anyway, click on to check these beauties out.  And, if you’re needing the reminder, ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY hits theaters December 16th! Continue reading ‘ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY Character Posters Are Here!’

Criterion Collection Flash Sale on Now!

CriterionIf you, like I, are a lover of great cinema, but sometimes look at those price tags on Criterion Collection releases and think “well, maybe someday,” then today is that day! Until 9:00 AM (PDT) tomorrow, the Criterion Collection is having a 50% off sale on their own website. If you are still reading this instead of following the link below, you are already missing out on great deals. Continue reading ‘Criterion Collection Flash Sale on Now!’

The Return Of Dracula (Blu-ray Review)

Return-of-DraculaAfter Bud Abbott and Lou Costello had a run in with the famous Count himself (In a return to the role by the seminal Bela Lugosi), Dracula pretty much laid dormant in the cinema landscape.  Vampires would still be around, but the main antagonist of them all took about a ten year break.  Then in 1958, he made an interesting set of returns.  History has been stamped with the Hammer film Horror Of Dracula (or just “Dracula” for most territories), but that film wasn’t alone in resurrecting the Count.  As a matter of fact, the appropriately titled The Return of Dracula was the other.  And its interesting how completely opposite the two films are.  One inspired a legacy and countless sequels, also spawning other monsters.  Return pretty much came and went and has been forgotten.  But not today, we’ll be taking a look at this film as Olive Films will be giving it a Blu-ray debut on October 18th. Continue reading ‘The Return Of Dracula (Blu-ray Review)’

Nighthawks – Collector’s Edition (Blu-ray Review)

NighthawksAnother wishlist item granted!  I specifically wanted a US release of Nighthawks on Blu-ray.  Previously, this was only available in German.  Now its coming via the Shout Select Collector’s Edition line from Shout! Factory.  They’ve only been around since August, but they’ve been pretty much killing it as expected so far.  They are basically taking what they’ve done with their highly praised and heralded Scream Factory line and branching it off to other genres or just everything else that isn’t horror.  Today’s title actually fell into the horror category when featured in 1981’s compilation film Terror In The Aisles.  Only fitting that Shout! Factory snuck this one into the October release slate.  This highly underrated and forgotten film in the Sylvester Stallone canon makes its way to Blu-ray in the states on October 18th. Continue reading ‘Nighthawks – Collector’s Edition (Blu-ray Review)’