Blu-ray Movie Reviews

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Chris Chiarella  |  Apr 03, 2020  |  0 comments
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The date noted in 1917's title (April 6, to be precise) puts us well into World War I, when young Lance Corporal Blake along with his mate Schofield are dispatched from the Allied trenches with an urgent message. Some 1,600 soldiers, Blake's own brother among them, are heading into certain slaughter if new orders are not delivered to the commanding officer. And so, facing impossible odds, the brave duo embarks on a mission that could change the course of the conflict.
Roger Kanno  |  Mar 27, 2020  |  0 comments
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Zombieland: Double Tap revisits the characters of Tallahassee, Columbus, Wichita, and Little Rock (played by Woody Harrelson, Jessie Eisenberg, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin, respectively) 10 years after the original Zombieland takes place. There is plenty of clever dialogue and zombie kills to keep the film moving at an entertaining pace, even though it lacks some of the freshness of the original. This latest version of the zombie apocalypse also benefits from an excellent supporting cast that includes Rosario Dawson, Thomas Middleditch, Luke Wilson, Avan Jogia, and Zoey Deutch in an especially humorous performance.
Chris Chiarella  |  Mar 20, 2020  |  3 comments
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The true story of sports car designer Carroll Shelby and driver Ken Miles' partnership with the Ford Motor Company to challenge legendary Ferrari and perhaps win racing's ultimate test of endurance, the 24 hours of Le Mans, is can't-miss Hollywood gold. While not quite a David v Goliath tale—we learn that cash-strapped Ferrari was something of an underdog—the results here are a heartfelt ode to cars, speed, second chances and next chapters, and good old American ingenuity.
Josef Krebs  |  Mar 13, 2020  |  0 comments
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Is it the search for assorted MacGuffii—bank-heist loot, giant opal, camera that records brainwave images the blind can see—that sends self-destructive Claire, her writer ex, and a bounty hunter after thief Sam Farber? Or is it love? Threatening in the wings is a nuclear satellite plunging to Earth that, if shot down, could create a chain-reaction atomic pulse that wipes all electronic circuit boards, including the file of the novel the film is being based upon.
Mike Mettler  |  Feb 28, 2020  |  3 comments
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Subtitle it The Ballad of Never-Easy Rider. Produced by Cameron Crowe, David Crosby: Remember My Name is a self-actualized love letter to one of rock's most significant rollercoaster-ride careers. Croz's admitted goal for the film's wished-for postscript is some level of interactive redemption with his chief collaborators of years past—i.e., Stephen Stills, Graham Nash, and Neil Young—all of whom he doesn't speak with to this day. (Why? As he readily admits, the combination of anger and adrenaline always turn him into "instant asshole.")
Josef Krebs  |  Feb 14, 2020  |  0 comments
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Winner of the Cannes Palme d'Or and Academy Awards for Best Picture, Director, Original Screenplay, and International Feature, director, co-producer, and co-writer Bong Joon Ho's classist farce, Parasite, focuses on the Kims, a family of poor but proud con artists. Presently scrabbling to get by on lowest-paid jobs in a bug-infested basement apartment in Seoul, South Korea, they dream of climbing up to a better life by tricking the rich using flattery, charm, and well-rehearsed scripts.
Chris Chiarella  |  Feb 07, 2020  |  1 comments
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To the annals of unique interpretations and iconic performances of The Clown Prince of Crime we must now add Joaquin Phoenix and his exquisitely tragic turn as Joker. The film's Arthur Fleck is a new creation fully outside any established cinematic or literary continuity, a man barely able to function on the mean streets of Gotham City circa 1981. We can feel him barely hanging on as he goes about his daily grind: caring for an ailing mother, toiling as a professional clown, and dreaming of a career as a standup comedian.
Brandon A. DuHamel  |  Jan 31, 2020  |  0 comments
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It Chapter Two picks up 27 years after the kids from The Losers Club in the first film have grown up and moved on with their lives. The killer clown Pennywise has returned, and a phone call from an old friend brings them all back to the town of Derry where they must face their fears and confront a past that has damaged them in more ways than they know.
Chris Chiarella  |  Jan 24, 2020  |  1 comments
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In Ad Astra (Latin for "to the stars"), a curious mashup of 2001 and Apocalypse Now, new facts have recently come to light about the disappearance of a deep, deep space probe launched to find intelligent life in the cosmos. The commander was Cliff McBride (Tommy Lee Jones), the most decorated man in the history of the space program, and now his son Roy (Brad Pitt) is tasked with his own top-secret mission...
Roger Kanno  |  Jan 17, 2020  |  0 comments
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The titular characters in Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw were introduced in earlier Fast & Furious films, but you don't have to know much about their backstories to enjoy this film, an extremely serviceable action-comedy that leans heavily on the charm and chemistry of its stars, Dwayne Johnson as Luke Hobbs and Jason Statham as Deckard Shaw.
Chris Chiarella  |  Jan 03, 2020  |  0 comments
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Aging TV actor Rick Dalton (movie actor Leonardo DiCaprio) suspects that his career as he knew it might be over, and grapples with the vanity and insecurity that comes with such an uncertain future. He makes his living pretending to be a cowboy, in contrast with his best bud and stunt double/driver, Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt, embracing his recent grizzle), who actually embodies the no-nonsense, two-fisted demeanor of a good old-fashioned horseman. Together, they navigate the show business landscape of 1969 in this nostalgic journey through the boulevards, backlots, and bars of La La Land.
Chris Chiarella  |  Dec 27, 2019  |  0 comments
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With its childlike innocence and a universal charm that's born of its exquisite characters, The Wizard of Oz is likely the greatest family film of all time, the sort we may never see again. The adventure of a willful Kansas farmgirl transported to a strange, wondrous land is a heart-tugging journey of music and laughter that should continue to enthrall generations to come. There are 80 years' worth of observations for me to draw upon here, but I'll just go with this: Not enough can ever be said of Margaret Hamilton's turn as the gleefully, irresistibly, deliciously wicked villain.
Thomas J. Norton  |  Dec 20, 2019  |  0 comments
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On her first day at pre-school, Bonnie, the kid who received Andy's toys at the end of Toy Story 3, makes (literally) a new friend out of a discarded spork. She calls him Forky and he soon becomes her favorite toy. But that's just the first act. On a road-trip with Bonnie's family, cowboy-toy Woody reunites with his old flame Bo Peep. Bo, now a "lost toy," has acquired the skills of an action hero—a sort of RamBoPeep.
Chris Chiarella  |  Dec 03, 2019  |  0 comments
The time has come to not only celebrate the holidays, but also our favorite movies and TV shows, in high- or ultra high-definition, with Atmos sound (where available), and with extras galore. Once again, we invite you to sit back and peruse our picks of the year's most exciting boxed sets to give and to receive.
Al Griffin  |  Nov 29, 2019  |  0 comments
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Ari Aster's second feature—the first was 2018's thoroughly unnerving Hereditary—continues the director's preoccupation with family as a wellspring of horror. This time around, horrific familial events occur in the film's first fifteen minutes, and the main protagonist, college student Dani, ends up trailing her ambivalent, unsupportive boyfriend to a rural community in Sweden that's in the midst of celebrating Midsommar, a festival occurring only once every ninety years.

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