Tuesday, January 19, 2010

DVD Releases: January 19, 2010

Five new releases hit shelves this week, among them one of the best, under seen indies of 2009, a good little Canadian film (even though it was set in Ireland) and a TV star making a promising feature film debut as director, writer and star. Of course, the two films most people will see out of these five are awful.

Big Fan *** ½
Comedian Patton Oswalt delivers an excellent performance as a die hard New York Giants fan who gets to live his dream when he meets his favorite player in a strip club – and then gets the crapped kicked out of him. Big Fan is a drama about what happens when fandom becomes an obsession, and the dangerous lengths some will go to try and keep their delusions alive. Oswalt is amazing in director Robert Siegal’s debut film (Siegal wrote The Wrestler last year). A great, under appreciated gem. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/12/movie-review-big-fan.html

Fifty Dead Men Walking ***
A young Irish petty criminal (Jim Sturgess) is drafted into service of the Brits (led by Ben Kingsley) to try and get some information on the bombings of the IRA. As he becomes a more successful snitch, his IRA friends become more and more suspicious, and he and is family is placed in more danger. A Canadian production, Fifty Dead Men Walking is a good little film – intense and stylish, with good performances by Sturgess, Kinglsey and Nathalie Press. Kevin Zegers, and especially Rose McGowan, are weak in support (with their Lucky Charms accents), but overall a solid film. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/07/movie-review-50-dead-men-walking.html

Gamer * ½
The filmmakers behind Crank and its sequel are back with this hyper kinetic action movie about a death row inmate (Gerard Butler) being used as a pawn in a videogame where he is forced to kill everyone, and cannot control his own actions. A horrible film with editing so rapid you have no idea what is going on. The only reason to see this film is Michael C. Hall’s off kilter brilliance as the reclusive genius, but then watching an episode of Dexter would be far better. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/09/movie-review-gamer.html

The Invention of Lying ***
Ricky Gervais co-wrote, co-directed and stars in this hilarious comedy set in a world where no one can lie – until he somehow finds a way to do so. All of a sudden, Gervais has everything he could ever want, except for the girl of his dreams. The film is full of hilarious one liners and scenes, and is told with Gervais’ typical mixture of hilarity and discomfort, that made The Office and Extras such amazing shows. The film goes off on perhaps one too many wild tangents, but this is still an excellent foray into feature films for Gervais. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/10/movie-review-invention-of-lying.html

Whiteout **
Kate Beckinsale is one of the most beautiful women on the planet, but what’s the point if she’s going to be in a parka the whole time? What’s worse, this arctic set murder mystery is predictable and fairly dull throughout its running time. It certainly isn’t a bad movie, just a movie that had no real reason to ever be made, and has no reason for you to ever watch it. For my original review please see: http://davesmoviesite.blogspot.com/2009/09/movie-review-whiteout.html

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