Monday, May 30, 2016

This week's (slim pickings) DVD Releases


RATINGS
***** A classic. Should be a part of any serious film lover’s permanent library.
**** Excellent with only a few minor flaws.
*** Worthy of renting or streaming.
** Below average, but mght have limited appeal to some tastes.
* Should be avoided at all costs.
No stars All copies should be confiscated and destroyed for humanity’s sake.

Click on title to see the film’s trailer.

Race **½ Directed by Stephen Hopkins. Jesse Owens’ (Stephan James’) quest to become the greatest track and field athlete in history thrusts him onto the world stage of the 1936 Olympics, where he faces off against Adolf Hitler’s vision of Aryan supremacy. Like a struggling sprinter, Hopkins’ film suffers from wasted motion, too much going on. It’s the difference between a merely competent movie and one justifying more discussion of Hollywood’s commitment to reward diversity.

Triple 9 **½ Directed by John Hillcoat. Blackmailed by Russian gangsters, a group of corrupt Atlanta cops concocts a scheme to distract police from a bank robbery by killing one of their own in another part of town. Though compelling in the acting and cinematography, the film’s plot is by the numbers and about nothing.

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies ** Directed by Burr Steers. Five sisters in 19th century England must cope with the pressures to marry while protecting themselves from a growing population of zombies. This is an odd, inconsequential but not entirely charmless misfire: an action-horror-comedy-romance with none of the first two and precious little of the third.

Gods of Egypt * Directed by Alex Proyas. This might have merited a so-bad-it’s-good schadenfreude fanbase had it maintained the unintentional laughs of its first 10 minutes. Instead, it skids into dullness, thus negating the camp classic that it so often verges on becoming.

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