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Hard Boiled Neeson Takes ‘A Walk Among The Tombstones’ (Movie Review)

a walk among the tombstones whysoblu thumbA Walk Among the Tombstones is a nice change of pace as far Liam Neeson’s career as a B-movie action star goes.  While the film may be sold as another chance to see Neeson use a particular set of skills to beat up some bad guys, it is really more of a detective story that flirts with noir-ish elements, with some grisly thriller aspects thrown in for good measure.  Based on a series of novels by Lawrence Bock, which is focused on the character Matthew Scudder, Neeson’s performance not only keeps this film together overall, but establishes a new potential franchise, which would be more interesting than watching him rescuing various kidnapped members of his family from European gangsters over and over again.

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Gilliam Tries His Best To Construct ‘The Zero Theorem’ (Movie Review)

the zero theorem whysoblu poster 1-001Director Terry Gilliam falls into the category of filmmakers that make movies that fit entirely into their own genres.  Quentin Tarantino makes Tarantino movies rather than straight comedies or action movies.  Tim Burton used to not really make horror or fantasy films, but instead he made Tim Burton films (hopefully he gets back to that soon).  I could go on, but Terry Gilliam does not really make science fiction films, he makes Terry Gilliam films, and that is what The Zero Theorem amounts to.  While the film feels like it has too much indebted to his own past work, specifically his best film (arguably), Brazil, The Zero Theorem is still unlike any sort of traditional take on dystopian sci-fi worlds, because Gilliam operates on his very own level, even while battling studios to preserve his vision.  As a result, while visually arresting and well-acted, it is not as conceptually interesting as it is a fun polish on some old ideas.

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‘A Walk Among The Tombstones’ Mostly Thrills (Movie Review)

A Walk Among The TombstonesA Walk Among The Tombstones movie trailer could initially fool someone into thinking they should be expecting Taken 3.  The trailer for A Walk Among The Tombstones shares some of the similar DNA to Taken with the same leading man, Liam Neeson, as well as familiar plot devices such as a tape recorder.  However, the cover of Soundgarden’s “Black Hole Sun” by Nouela (it can be heard here) reminds us that this is a much more darker and grizzlier crime drama tale than the Taken films.  It’s also based on a novel by Lawrence Block of the same name, and believe it or not, once upon a time in 2002 Harrison Ford was attached to star.  So I honestly don’t feel tooted now that my movie has been in development for some three years now, but I digress. Continue reading ‘‘A Walk Among The Tombstones’ Mostly Thrills (Movie Review)’

If You’re ‘The Maze Runner’, You Run Like Hell (Movie Review)

the maze runner whysoblu thumbAt this point, seeing another YA novel adapted into a film only brings up so much excitement.  Part of it comes from there being only so many of these types of books I want to see as films and the other part is pretty simple: lots of these films are fairly dull and too focused on being a franchise-starter first, an enjoyable film second.  I had no real opinion on The Maze Runner going into it.  I have not read this book series, the cast is made up of younger actors I have seen in some things, but haven’t regarded as ‘the next big thing’, and there is a rookie director at the helm.  Keeping all of this in mind, it would be easy for me to go into the flaws of the logic in a movie like this or even how it could have handled certain aspects regarding dramatic tension better, but honestly, I had a good time watching this film.  The Maze Runner has a key thing going for it and that is consistency.  It is not overlong, it is decently acted, features effective enough visuals, builds its tension and mystery well, and has a serious tone that does not come off as cheesy.  This may not be the next big triumph for YA novel film adaptations, but it is far from the worst.

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AS THE LIGHT GOES OUT Ignites On Blu-ray Nov. 18!

As-The-Light-Goes-OutTo save Hong Kong from an fiery disaster, a team of dedicated firefighters battle an out-of-control blaze that threatens to plunge the city into catastrophic darkness in AS THE LIGHT GOES OUT, blazing onto Blu-ray, DVD and digital Nov. 18 from Well Go USA Entertainment. Written and directed by Derek Kwok (Journey to the West), the action-packed suspense drama stars Nicholas Tse (Shaolin, The Stool Pigeon), Shawn Yue (The Guillotines, Infernal Affairstrilogy), Simon Yam (Ip Man, Election), Hu Jun (Firestorm, Let the Bullets Fly), William Chan (Triad), Bai Bing (The Viral Factor,Shaolin), Andy On (Special ID, White Vengeance) and a cameo by the legendary Jackie Chan (Rush Hour franchise).

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A High Podcaster Has Given Us A Weird Dream Project In The Form Of ‘Tusk’ (Movie Review)

tusk whysoblu thumbI have large doubts that 20 years ago, following the debut of writer/director Kevin Smith’s Clerks, anyone predicted that one day this man would make a film about a mysterious man turning an unknowing participant into a walrus, but here we are.  Based on an idea that stemmed from an episode of one of Smith’s podcasts, SModcast, which he hosts with his best friend and former producer pal Scott Mosier, Tusk is a twisted horror-comedy that certainly features some memorable images, but mainly serves as a way of telling us that Smith has no desire to really move beyond entertaining his own fanbase, despite stepping away from his comfort zone, from a filmmaking standpoint.  Given that I am a fan of Smith’s and hold a few of his films in high regard, I was certainly happy to go along with seeing how this film turned out, but if I had no clue about what this film was, I am pretty certain I would have thought Tusk was a film made as some sort of dare.

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The Midnight Special Collector’s Edition – 6 Disc Set (DVD Review)

Midnight-SpecialAvailable now, the TV DVD archivists at StarVista Entertainment/Time Life bring consumers back to the ’70s for the seminal, groundbreaking live music TV show on DVD, featuring extensive bonus features!  The Midnight Special Collector’s Edition 6-disc set that we are reviewing today is available through retailers like Amazon.  For the 11-disc and 20-disc sets you’ll have to head on over to StarVista Entertainments site to pre-order them.  But, today we are discussing the retail version of this release, which includes the first 6 discs from those bigger sets.

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Formulaic Family Hijinks Found In ‘This Is Where I Leave You’ (Movie Review)

this is where i leave you whysoblu thumbThis is Where I Leave You is the kind of film that walks the line between being aware it is not treading new ground, but still wants to make you happy, based on all the talented actors involved, and treating its subject matter in a more serious manner.  It is a film featuring characters that are mostly not all that inherently interesting, but because they are played by people like Jason Bateman and Tina Fey, the film at least has some reliable performances to stand behind them.  It is nothing new to have a small period of time serve as a way of course correction for the lives of a family in a film, but while this film is fairly enjoyable, it lacks much of anything to really make it stand out.  It is a film that does just enough, but sits a couple spots away from being essential viewing.

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Jason Reitman’s MEN, WOMEN & CHILDREN Has A New Trailer

mwac-poster-smallLabor Day aside, I am a big fan of the films from Jason Reitman (Up In The Air, Juno, Young Adult), so I tend to get excited for whatever he has coming our way.  Men, Women & Children has me curious.  While I feel the film Disconnect handled a similar topic just last year, the idea of watching how technology has altered the social environment continues to be a neat concept that could play into a good feature film, if handled right.  A new trailer is now up, so feel free to check it out, along with the film’s synopsis, and admire the poster as well, as I think it is one of the better mainstream theatrical posters from this year.

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Thunder And The House Of Magic (Blu-ray Review)

Thunder-And-The-House-Of-MagicShout! Factory is distributing the animated film Thunder And The House Of Magic this fall exclusively to Walmart stores starting September 30.  So exclusive to Walmart that you can’t even purchase it via the Shout! Factory website.  This animated tale featured a limited theatrical run in the US a few weeks ago and was released wide in Belgium last year around Christmas time.  The film has a lot of notable music included in the feature including songs by The Cure and Selena Gomez.

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The Rolling Stones ‘From the Vaults’ Series Unveiled this November!

Rolling StonesEagle Rock Entertainment are about to deliver a double dose of Rolling Stones this November, with the debut of the new series of live concerts: From The VaultFrom The Vault will unveil live concert films from the Rolling Stones archive, now receiving their first official release. The footage from these concerts have been carefully restored, and the sound has been newly mixed by Bob Clearmountain. From The Vault – Hampton Coliseum – Live In 1981 will be released simultaneously on SD Blu-ray, DVD/2CD, DVD/3LP, DVD, and Digital Formats on November 4, 2014 [Pre-book Order Date October 10, MSRP $17.98 SD Blu-ray, $29.98 DVD/2CD, $44.98 DVD/3LP, and $TBA DVD]. From The Vault – L.A. Forum – Live In 1975 will be released on DVD, DVD/2CD, DVD/3LP, and Digital Video on November 18, 2014 [Pre-book Order Date October 24, MSRP $TBA DVD, $29.98 DVD/2CD, $TBA DVD/3LP].

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Monty Python Live (mostly) – One Down Five to Go – on Blu-ray November 11!

Monty Python Live On November 11, 2014, Eagle Rock Entertainment will release Monty Python Live (mostly) – One Down Five to Go – the film ofMonty Python’s 2014 reunion shows live at The O2, London. Filmed in high definition, this title will be simultaneously released on DVD, Blu-ray, and digital video. The reunion of the Monty Python team on stage for the first time in over 30 years, and for the last time ever, was the most anticipated production of 2014. Filmed live on July 20th on the final night of the run of ten sold out performances at The O2, London, Monty Python Live (mostly) – One Down Five to Go sees the five surviving members – John CleeseTerry GilliamEric IdleTerry Jones and Michael Palin – together with Carol Cleveland, perform many of their classic sketches and much-loved songs, with modern, Pythonesque twists. The show also encompasses film inserts from Monty Python’s Flying CircusTerry Gilliam’s iconic animations, outrageous dance routines by an ensemble of twenty and a fantastic live orchestra.   Continue reading ‘Monty Python Live (mostly) – One Down Five to Go – on Blu-ray November 11!’

The Doors: ‘Feast of Friends’ on Blu-ray & DVD November 11th!

Feast of Friends Fans of THE DOORS will savor the news about the November 11 street date of a never-before-released documentary film produced by the band.  Titled Feast of Friends, the intimate and rare look at the explosive rock band is, after 45 years, finally being released.  Shelved due to lead singer Jim Morrison’s legal issues, the uncompleted film was only ever seen at a few film festivals and was never completed.  Eagle Rock Entertainment and Doors Property, LLC have painstakingly remastered the audio and video and compiled bonus footage as well as an historic British documentary called The Doors Are Open.   Continue reading ‘The Doors: ‘Feast of Friends’ on Blu-ray & DVD November 11th!’

WHITE CHRISTMAS Diamond Anniversary Edition Comes To Blu-ray On 10/14

White-Christmas-Diamond-EditionCelebrate 60 years of the treasured musical classic Irving Berlin’s WHITE CHRISTMAS with the spectacular new Diamond Anniversary Edition arriving on Blu-ray Combo Pack October 14, 2014 from Paramount Home Media Distribution.  Starring legendary performers Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen and featuring unforgettable music by Irving Berlin, the beloved holiday film offers timeless entertainment for all ages. 

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Wiig And Hader Make For A Wonderful Set Of ‘Skeleton Twins’ (Movie Review)

the skeleton twins whysoblu thumbThe Skeleton Twins is the kind of film that features a few actors giving the kind of performances that make it look easy.  Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig are best known for their work on Saturday Night Live, but clearly have aspirations to delve into more dramatic work, better showing off their range as performers.  It is one thing to find the humor in certain scenes, but it is another to make that humor play in scenes that come in between some heavy dramatic material.  This is a film that features some really dark material, but is able to develop a story that can follow a fairly formulaic level of plotting and still succeed, based on the confidence of the actors involved and the filmmakers working behind the scenes.  As a result, The Skeleton Twins works as a sad comedy for the art house crowd and manages to rise above the easy complaints about these sort of family-focused stories.

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Arrow The Complete Second Season (Blu-ray Review)

ArrowWhen CW first announced that they were doing an Arrow tv series, I was skeptical.  Oliver Queen is one of the most liberal and rebellious characters in the DCU, I wasn’t sure how the WB was going to pull it off.  Luckily, the first season was a great success, mostly due to lowered expectations (on my end anyway).  Arrow The Complete Second Season was really going to be a make or break season for this show creatively.  A sophomore slump was the fear I had for the show.  Thankfully, it didn’t disappoint.  Let’s take a closer look! Continue reading ‘Arrow The Complete Second Season (Blu-ray Review)’

PERSECUTED: Starring James Remar, Bruce Davison – On Blu-Ray October 14!

PersecutedIn Persecuted, nationally acclaimed evangelist John Luther is the last obstacle in the way of passage of sweeping religious reform legislation in the United States Congress. When he refuses to support the legislation, a U.S. Senator and Luther’s own supporters abduct and frame him in the murder of an innocent teenage girl. Luther escapes police surveillance in search of the truth and suddenly a once-normal life is targeted by a team of ex-military operatives who wage a relentless campaign to eliminate the incriminating evidence. As evangelist turned fugitive, Luther vows to expose anyone involved with, or profiting from, the girl’s murder.  Persecuted will be available on Blu-ray Combo and DVD on October 14. Continue reading ‘PERSECUTED: Starring James Remar, Bruce Davison – On Blu-Ray October 14!’

Whimsical & Humorous A LETTER TO MOMO Arrives On Blu-ray Oct 21

Letter-To-MomoFrom the creators of Ghost in the Shell comes the supernatural anime classic featuring thousands of squirming, morphing ghosts and spirits.  The last time Momo saw her father they had a fight and now all she has left to remember him by is an incomplete letter penned with the words “Dear Momo,” but nothing more. Moving with her mother to the remote Japanese island of Shio, Momo soon discovers three Yokai living in her attic, a trio of mischievous spirit creatures that only she can see and who create mayhem in the tiny seaside community as she tries desperately to keep them hidden. But these funny monsters have a serious side and may hold the key to helping Momo discover what her father had been trying to tell her.

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