With his good looks, Liev Schreiber (TV's Ray Donovan) seems born to play an astronaut. In Magnet Releasing's The Last Days on Mars, he finally gets the chance. As chief systems officer Vincent Campbell, he's part of Aurora's six-month mission on the red planet with only 19 hours left to go before heading home. What could go wrong?
According to The Slumber Party Massacre, young women love to have group sleepovers so fun that the girls don't have the good sense to leave the house when their party is crashed by the arrival of a drill-wielding serial killer.
We vilify people for bad behavior in real life, yet celebrate it in our entertainment, particularly on the small screen. When the results are as strong as the current crop, all new (or new-ish) to DVD and/or Blu-ray, why question the disconnect?
Prior to his Spider-Man trilogy, director Sam Raimi cut his superhero-movie teeth on 1990's Darkman, a character of his own creation. Although it's clearly not the most polished of his works, the summer sleeper plays even better as the years tick by. Look no further than Shout! Factory's colorful re-release on Blu-ray.
Someday, celebrity cyclist Lance Armstrong may regret hiring Oscar-winning director Alex Gibney to document his 2009 "comeback," but I doubt it. As The Armstrong Lie demonstrates time and again for two mostly gripping hours, the athlete is still unable to tell the whole truth and nothing but.
It would have been understandable had “We Were Here” veered into the
maudlin. The documentary, which recounts how San Francisco’s gay
community united in the 1980s to combat the AIDS epidemic, has its share
of gut-wrenching stories. But the film is admirably no-frills.
Screening Wednesday, Nov. 30, at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art, “We Were Here” is spare, somber and unsentimental.
It is also thoroughly inspiring. Directors David Weissman and Bill Weber illustrate AIDS’ devastating impact on San Francisco by narrowing the focus to a handful of interview subjects.
The interviewees — gay-rights activist Paul Boneberg, florist Guy Clark, nurse Eileen Glutzer, artist Daniel Goldstein and counselor Ed Wolf — depict how the city spiraled from a beacon of sexual freedom to a community mired in death.
Wolf recalls first learning about AIDS when he saw photographs posted on a drugstore window. The pictures showed a man wasting away and covered in mysterious lesions.
“Watch out, guys,” read a caption under the photos. “There’s something out there.”
But “We Were Here” is not a tale of defeat. With roughly half of San Francisco’s gay population impacted by AIDS, the tight-knit community joined forces and did what needed to be done for those infected. With minimal use of archival footage or photos, the documentary gives its interviewees room to bear witness.
Their stories are undeniably heartbreaking, but also reveal strength and — at the risk of invoking what might be the overused word of this decade — resilience.