Monday, December 28, 2015

This Week's DVD Releases

Click on title to see the film’s trailer

Bone Tomahawk *** Directed by S. Craig Zahler. Starring Kurt Russell. Russell’s performance is certainly one reason to see this unexpected low-budget treat, a witty fusion of western, horror and comedy that gallops to its own beat. That rhythm is dictated entirely by writer/director Zahler, a novelist and musician who flips genre conventions upside-down and cares more about character than body count.

The Intern ** Directed by Nancy Meyers. Starring Robert DeNiro, Anne Hathaway. Meyers seems content to make a nice movie about nice people doing their best to be nice to each other despite one or two not-nice things that happen along the way. That’s all very nice, but not particularly the stuff of potent or rousing entertainment.

A Walk in the Woods ** Directed by Ken Kwapis. Starring Robert Redford, Emma Thompson, Nick Nolte. It has its charming, lively moments, but also many that just feel tired and listless, as if the filmmakers were working off a checklist of all the things two well-past-middle-age travelers would say and do while trekking through the wilderness.

HeistDirected by Scott Mann. Starring Robert DeNiro, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Gina Carano, Morris Chestnut. Would the movie be as (barely) entertaining as it is without De Niro? He only has about 15 minutes’ worth of scenes in the film, but whenever he’s on-screen the film almost feels legitimate.

The Perfect GuyDirected by David M. Rosenthal. Starring Sanaa Lathan, Michael Ealy, Morris Chestnut. There’s certainly an audience for these thrillers, but imagine how big that audience might be for one that really works.

Jenny’s Wedding * Directed by Mary Agnes Donaghue. Starring Katherine Heigl. A movie so hopelessly late to the coming-out party that you want to haul everyone connected with it into the 21st century.

Hitman: Agent 47 * Directed by Aleksander Bach. Writers Skip Woods and Michael Finch have a few tricks up their sleeves as betrayals emerge and allegiances shift. But it’s not enough to make us care or to keep the third act from being a head-scratching mess.

Some Kind of Hate * Directed by Adam Egypt Mortimer. Like so much teen-targeting modern horror, it opts for dull angsty brooding over the very sort of grim-and-gruesome sleaziness that might have made its premise interesting.

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