Thriller Rod Lott
It’s not difficult to see what Martin Scorsese saw in Easy Money
to lend his name to it as presenter to American audiences: a lot of
himself. The 2010 Swedish film is a crime epic cast in the mold of Goodfellas or Casino, yet still its own thing. A smash as Snabba Cash in its native land, where it’s already spawned two sequels, the movie now arrives on DVD.
Drama Rod Lott
How weird that K-11 is attracting more attention for who the director is (the mother of Twilight
starlet Kristen Stewart) than for its outlandish subject matter
(transgendered inmates). That oversight is as insane as this movie, new to VOD.
Horror Rod Lott Grudge guru Takashi Shimizu isn’t at a career apex. His 2009 film, The Shock Labyrinth, was a dud. His latest American effort, the airline ghost story 7500, was supposed to come out in theaters last summer, but got pushed to next month. So I hoped Tormented, a 2011 J-horror effort fresh to Blu-ray on these shores, might mark a return to form.
Action Rod Lott
With the Cohen Film Collection, we may have another Criterion
Collection-level provider of classic movies in the making, if its
Blu-ray presentation of The Thief of Bagdad is any indication.
Horror Rod Lott
When viewers insert the DVD of 13 Eerie
into their player, and the menu loads, they’ll be greeted by a crude
but cute animation of the cover’s creature doing a little jig. I don’t
think it’s meant to be amusing as I took it, but it is a sign that the
movie isn’t your average, ordinary zombie film.
Comedy Rod Lott
We’re slipping, America. It look to Ireland to make the best horror comedy in recent memory, Stitches. The subgenre is one of the toughest to pull off — a feat about as rare as finding a four-leaf clover.
Comedy Rod Lott
In case there were any question, Dead in France
is a black comedy. Take the opening scene, for instance, in which a man
takes a fatal fall from a cliff, but not before hitting his head on the
rocks several times during the trip, grunting a painful “Oof!” with
each knock to the noggin.
For its 20th birthday, ‘Jurassic Park’ gets a 3-D coat.
To celebrate 20 years, Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park returns to theaters starting today, this time with a conversion to 3-D.
Does the 3-D add anything? No. Does the movie still work? Yes.
So ubiquitous in our current pop culture is the 1993 blockbuster that there’s no need for me to rehash its plot beyond “man clones dinosaurs.” (For kids, all one has to say is “dinosaurs,” and they’re onboard.) It’s been ages — 19 years, I’m guessing — since I last saw it before this week, and it was a pleasure to revisit its big set pieces, which have stood the test of time.
What hasn’t aged well is the film’s opening — basically, everything before chaos reigns on the theme-park island. It takes too long to get to the goods, and this chunk of time stands as Park’s weakest portion. The 3-D is not only an unnecessary addition, but actually proves problematic by spatially disorienting viewers during scenes of action. Spielberg’s frames wow enough because of how realistic the dinosaurs look (and still do); they’re not in need of the View-Master treatment.
It didn’t bother my 8-year-old, however, and I suspect he’s the real reason Universal Pictures has reopened Jurassic Park’s gates: Now, a whole generation exists that wasn’t around to see the movie when it first broke ground ... or to see 2001’s Jurassic Park III, for that matter. Certainly the studio wishes to prime this batch of youngsters so they’ll be in line for Jurassic Park IV (reportedly with Safety Not Guaranteed director Colin Trevorrow at the helm), and just judging from my son’s case, it’s safe to say they’ve wildly succeeded. —Rod Lott