This Week in Home Video: Man of Steel, Charlie Chaplin, All the Presidents Men, and Film Mayors Breaking Bad
This Week in Home Video previews all the latest Blu-ray, DVD and on-demand titles hitting the street this week, plus lost gems, crazed Cancon, outrageous cult titles and the best places to rent, buy, talk or see movies in Toronto.
Man of Steel (Warner Bros.)
Who better than ultra-violence maven maestro Zach "SUCKER PUNCH" Snyder to re-Christian Warner Bro's aging Superman franchise, with a Hail Mary from fellow DC revisionist Christopher Nolan and more money than the GDP of most third world countries combined. The result is a not-unexpected hollow spectacle that manages to sully the Supes former good guy reputation but also remind everyone how fun global carnage can look with the caped one unhinged and free from golden age comic book morality.
No doubt 2015's follow-up SUPERMAN VS. BATMAN wherein Superman and Batman will knock seven shades of shit out of each other will be even more amped up and devoid of the kind of wondrous humanism which made the Christopher Reeve SUPERMAN movies so unforgettable.
Bonus features include:
Garden snail Turbo (voiced by a suspiciously Mark Walberg sounding Ryan Reynolds) dreams to be able to race in the Indy 500, and now thanks to freak accident he actually gets a shot. So its CARS meets A BUG'S LIFE with a side order of RATATOUILLE, but there's nothing wrong with that.
Dexter: The Complete Final Season (CBS DVD)
A disappointing conclusion to 7 years of high grade story, DEXTER's lacklustre finale was especially noticeable next to BREAKING BAD who managed a soft landing and guaranteed itself immortality in the hallways of quality TV; DEXTER now joins LOST, GLEE and HEROES as great shows who should have quit while they were ahead. Also available: DEXTER: The Complete Series, for the more discerning fans.
Power Rangers Season 8-12 (Shout Factory)
Children of the 90s unite as Shout Factory continues to release every single iteration of POWER RANGERS, good, bad and terrible, onto DVD in 2013. This massive bundle collects series 8-12 - LIGHTSPEED RESCUE, TIME FORCE, WILD FORCE, NINJA STORM, and DINO THUNDER which according to the hard-core POWER RANGERS fan gliterrati approaches the quality tip of THE WIRE, seen. Also contains a bonus disc of extras and 40-page book covering these seasons.
All the President's Men: 40th Anniversary Edition (Warner Bros.)
Timely re-issue of one of the great 1970s Hollywood studio films, a methodical recreation of the fearless pavement pounding, rotary phone digging exhausting research conducted by Washington Post journos Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein while cracking the Watergate scandal. Cuts a real contrast to what is considered crusading journalism these days (tweeting from the cozy confines of coffee shops, #natch), and also hugely influential on David Fincher's masterpiece ZODIAC, so always worthy of a re-visitation.
City Lights (The Criterion Collection)
Usually ranked by proper cinema boffins as one of the 10 greatest films of all time, this is indeed Chaplin's masterpiece. All the more startling when you understand it was made during the onslaught of sound, and as a silent it was already a dinosaur when released.
At home in the sterling company of the Criterion Collection, this new digital restoration from a 4K film transfer features a new audio commentary by Charlie Chaplin biographer Jeffrey Vance, a 2003 documentary on the film, featuring Aardman Animations cofounder Peter Lord, archival footage from the production of City Lights, including film from the set, with audio commentary by Chaplin historian Hooman Mehran; a costume test; a rehearsal; and a complete scene not used in the film, trailers, and a booklet featuring a brilliant 1966 interview with Chaplin.
Nosferatu (Kino Classics)
The original 1922 gangster adaptation of Dracula, still far scarier than anything that has come along in the last 100 years and a blinding example of the power of visual over visceral horror. This gorgeous two-disc set features two versions of the film, the original German Intertitles (with optional English subtitles) or English Intertitles, Han s Erdmann s original 1922 score in 5.1 Surround or 2.0 Stereo, The Language of Shadows a 52 minute documentary chronicling the early career of director F.W. Murnau, plus a series of clips and highlights from other F.W. Murnau films.
John Carpenter's Body Bags (Scream Factory)
Johnny "HALLOWEEN" Carpenter's rare-as-hens-teeth TV horror anthology features three short stories of terror, two directed by Carpenter himself (who is also on hosting duties) and one from yesterday's hero Tobe Hooper. First installment "The Gas Station" ranks alongside Carpenter's greats (ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13, THE FOG, PRINCE OF DARKNESS), making this an essential curio for fans of the man.
WHEN MOVIE MAYORS BREAK BAD
If you find yourself constantly refreshing Twitter feeds waiting for the next major Mayoral palaver, these five movies are worth your spare time. City Halls have long been known for outrageous behaviour, corruption, unbridled hypocrisy and frenzied free-falls, perfect meaty fragments for Hollywood to mould into cinematic Hot Dogs.
Be warned that the fiction below rarely betters the reality above:
BROKEN CITY (2012)
Russell Crowe plays a crooked mayor who stupidly double-crosses, and then frames Mark Walberg.
THE DUKES OF HAZZARD (2005)
Burt Reynolds plays inept Mayor of Hazzard County Boss Hogg, a role made famous by Sorrell Brooke in the TV show of the same name.
PRINCE OF THE CITY (1981)
Not Mayoral focused, but a brutal adaptation by Sidney Lumet of the scandal plagued 1970s NYPD.
CITY HALL (1996)
Near incomprehensible story of cover-up at City Hall with shouty Al Pacino and a young looking John Cusack .
IN OLD CHICAGO (1937)
No matter the mountains of sleaze which may accumulate in other locations, nothing will ever come close to the Chicago Way...
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