Tuesday, November 17, 2009

DVD Releases: November 17, 2009

After a few weeks of not very much coming out, this week has quite a few films being released – all of which deserve your attention. So fire up the DVD player, because there are seven films out this week.

Bruno *** ½
While certainly not as good as Borat was, Sacha Baron Cohen’s Bruno is still one of the most brazen high wire comedies of the year. Baron Cohen plays his alter ego Bruno, the flambuoyant;y gay fashion critic as he tries to become famous in America. In the process, he offends just about everyone, and rubs homophobes face in their ugly stereotypes and bigotry. The movie is more hit and miss than Borat, and doesn’t generate the same comic momentum, but still it is hilarious almost start to finish. I’m glad Baron Cohen is around doing his thing. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/07/movie-review-bruno.html

Humpday *** ½
Humpday is like a Judd Apatow movie that is just a little more honest. Two old college friends get together and relive old times. One has become a responsible husband, and is trying to get his wife pregnant, and the other has continued to live his slacker lifestyle. The bromance that in the Apatow movies is always threatening to become sexual, really does here, as the two decide to make a porn movie together for a local porn festival. The movie is smart, funny and surprisingly touching at the end. Will these two, who obviously have conflicted feelings for each other, ever see each other again? For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/08/movie-review-humpday.html

The Limits Of Control ** ½
Jim Jarmusch is one of the few true independent filmmakers in the world right now. He raises the money for the movies himself, and makes exactly the film he wants to. In The Limits of Control, he casts Issach De Bankole, as an almost mute man who does meets with one person after another in attempt to complete his “job”, which we correctly assume is some sort of assassination. The movie is gorgeous to look at, and interesting in fits in starts, but never quite comes together. Yet, if you are a Jarmusch fan, this is a must see. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/05/movie-review-limits-of-control.html

My One And Only ***
I only got a chance to see this one last week, so if you were paying attention, you probably already read the review last week. But now, you have a chance to see one of the sleepers of this year – an intelligent comedy/drama about life in the 1950s that is not all sunshine and roses. Renee Zellweger gives one of her best performances ever as a Southern Belle working on her second divorce, who tries her best to sink her hooks into another husband to take care of her and her two teenage sons. An good little movie about the early years of Hollywood icon George Hamilton. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/11/movie-review-my-one-and-only.html

My Sister's Keeper ***
An interesting little drama about a family that has one daughter dying of cancer, and genetically created a perfect match with another daughter. Now that daughter (Abigail Breslin) is tired of being used for her body parts and is suing her parents (Cameron Diaz and Jason Patric) for control over her own body, to get the pain to stop. An emotional tearjerker to be sure, and one that is perhaps a tad too manipulative, but still an excellent example of a certain kind of movie by Nick Cassavetes. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/06/movie-review-my-sisters-keeper.html

Star Trek *** ½
One of the most popular films of the year, JJ Abrams’ reboot of the beloved science fiction series was intelligent, fun and very well made. The performances by the entire cast are very good, especially Chris Pine as Kirk, Zachary Quinto as Spock, Karl Urban as Bones, Anton Yelchin as Checkov and my personal favorite, Simon Pegg as Scottie. Eric Bana is also fine as the bad guy. Good special effects, a fast moving screenplay, and respect, but not reverence, for the source material made this one genuinely good moviemaking. The film does feel a little too much like a TV pilot, yet this is still great. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/05/movie-review-star-trek.html

Thirst *** ½
Now that director Chan-wook Park has vengeance out of his system, with his trilogy Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance, Oldboy and Lady Vengeance behind him, he turns his keen focus to the vampire genre. In many ways, Thirst (which won the Jury Prize at this year’s Cannes Film Festival), is a more intelligent version of Twilight, with adults in the teenage roles, as a priest (Kang Ho Song) becomes a vampire and falls in love with Ok-vin Kim’s sad wife, who turns out to be more twisted then he could even conceive. The film is a bloody riot, with a good sense of humor, and an excellent flair for the erotic, the film is over the top but involving all the way through, with one of the best female performances of the year in Kim. A worthy film from a great filmmaker. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/08/movie-review-thirst.html

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