Latest DVD Reviews
The Ninth Gate (1999)
Sorely underrated...wisely counter-cultural to Hollywood's idea of what a supernatural thriller should be.
Utterly unconventional and strikingly unique; it begs not to be watched in the same manner as a conventional narrative film. Like a great painting, it is meant to be savored, pored over, observed from different angles and revisited in time.
Hannah Montana: The Movie (2009)
The way this movie ends is so wrong that it doesn't deserve a pass as frothy entertainment. Why? Because it's actively sending a bad message to kids.
The Last Starfighter (1984)
Charmingly hokey...takes the suburban-working-class-folks-meet-space-aliens paradigm of early Spielberg and marries it to Lucas'
The Last House on the Left (2009)
Those viewers trapped in the film's nihilism and hoping for more can amuse themselves by looking at the film as an Aristotelian tragedy—take that,
Friday the 13th
17 Again (2009)
It’s a strange movie indeed that is all about a 37-year-old heterosexual male and yet isn’t likely to appeal to any 37-year-old heterosexual males.
A fine example of the Kurosawa style...precision of narrative in both scripting and imagistic storytelling...
The Class (Entre les murs) (2008)
A great achievement in cinematic realism...when conflict arises, and it frequently does, the filmmakers refuse to instruct us on who’s right and who’s wrong, making the film its own kind of Socratic lecture.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: 25th Anniversary Collector's Edition (2009)
What can I say about
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
that the title doesn't economically express?
Battlestar Galactica: Season 4.5 (2009)
The last ten episodes of
deliver plenty of puzzles, prophecies and dreams; answer questions and raise others; and pay off characters in satisfying and usually surprising ways.
Big Trouble in Little China (1986)
A "B"-movie-style Western meets Eastern, a supernatural "chopsocky" fantasy with leading man Kurt Russell doing a feature-length impression of a dead movie star. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.
My Cousin Vinny (1992)
The minor miracle of
My Cousin Vinny
is that—though the picture never scores any guffaws, the villains remain off-screen, and the conclusion is never in doubt—the movie's full two-hour running time passes so breezily.
Race to Witch Mountain (2009)
If it's possible for a movie to be agressively bland,
Race to Witch Mountain
is that movie.
The Waterboy (1998)
There's an innocence to
that makes the picture part slapstick and part fairy tale...The only problem with letting kids see this Adam Sandler movie? They might want to see another one.
Sling Blade (1996)
Thornton brings three key ingredients to the table: distinctive, rich, authentic Southern locations, patient and painterly atmosphere, and a precise and fresh character to study.
The Soloist (2009)
[This] bromantic drama...becomes as frustratedly impotent as Lopez feels, and as chokingly symbolic as Ayers looks with an Uncle Sam top hat on his head and an American flag in his shopping cart.
Dollhouse: Season One (2009)
A smart pseudo-anthology vehicle for Dushku to spread her wings (not unlike the way
showcased Scott Bakula's versatility) with a touch of
in the dark overtones of the show's ongoing mythology.
Harvard Beats Yale 29-29 (2009)
If the film meanders at times, reaching for significance in the wrong places, football fans will nevertheless find it charming.
This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
The story of an embarrasingly inept heavy-metal band called Spinal Tap, Rob Reiner's film set the mockumentary standard that has come to define much of modern screen comedy.
Twelve Monkeys (1995)
Gilliam's polarizing style is at its near-best...a dazzling feat of storytelling that bristles with provocative ideas.
Polanski dares the viewer to plunge into that eye and through the psychic rabbit hole that is its owner's increasingly unhinged personality.
The Towering Inferno (1974)
A Titanic tale of hubris...knot-in-the-stomach scary from the moment the fire gets out of control to the last-ditch heroics that come hours later.
Green Lantern: First Flight (V) (2009)
A literally colorful action-adventure plot...[but] fails to replicate the success of February's
at making its leading character not just kick-ass but fascinating.
Fast & Furious (2009)
entertainment for a moment of 'populist rage.' But it’s hard to escape the feeling that
Fast & Furious
is more than a little…mechanical.
Torchwood: Children of Earth (TV) (2009)
Davies and co-writers John Fay and James Moran load it up with enough surprises to keep jaws dropped and minds racing.
Doctor Who: Planet of the Dead (TV) (2009)
By no means sophisticated science fiction, but it is a helluva lot of fun...Davies specializes in this sort of high-spirited nonsense, which he characterizes as a last chance for the Tenth Doctor to have a fun-loving romp.
I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998)
Needless to say, logic takes a holiday, just not in the Bahamas.
Midnight Express (1978)
Strong stuff indeed...swells proportional sight and sound subjectively to convey Hayes' nightmarish experience but also hypes up a story that probably doesn't need the help.
A stop-motion-animation classic-to-be...both in concept and execution,
is wildly creative stuff.
has a grunting, gut impact...Primarily, it's constructed of fudged history and creative slaughtering, making it a somewhat disturbing American busman's holiday.
Watchmen: Director's Cut (2009)
Any film that depicts a 'superheroic' rapist-brute as a self-styled parody of America's 'true face' can hardly be accused of thematic squeamishness, and any film that sends readers back to the comic for Moore (and Gibbons) has served the public interest.
Grumpy Old Men (1993)
Irresistible...the prime hams and real-life friends share comic timing that can only come from years of experience.
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation - The First Season (2000)
Punches up its storytelling with biologically invasive visual effects and a soapy interest in its characters' sexy private lives.
gets a pass for making books seem cool (if scary): if only it could have done the same for movies.
The Edge of Love (2009)
Maybury tackles the great Dylan Thomas in
The Edge of Love
, a speculative investigation into a cloudy period of the poet and dramatist's personal life.
The Universe: The Complete Season Two (2007)
If you're looking for the right kind of distraction for that precocious, scientifically curious youngster in your family, look no further.
12 Rounds (2009)
Awfully forgettable, but Harlin makes things go boom again, with ruthless efficiency that puts the flick just over the hump of the straight-to-cable Jeff Speakman school.
The Unborn (2009)
The best that can be said for Goyer's latest is that it's competent. How competent is a matter of debate, as is the degree to which Goyer is self-aware about the film's camp value.
Stephen King's Children of the Corn (1984)
It's a--look, it has to be said--
"B" horror flick with a certain
je ne sais WTF
For All Mankind (1989)
For All Mankind
is about what makes these men all the same...and, to some extent what makes us all the same: our infinitesimal smallness in the humbling vastness of the universe.
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