Your Mid-Week Guide To DVD And Streaming

Context is for pussies

THIS WEEK: Meryl Streep Gets The Death Penalty For Comatose Prostitution

Howdy folks! Don’t let the banner pic fool you, we’ve actually got some gems this week.  Besides Meryl Streep’s surprising Oscar win, there’s the latest Werner Herzog doc, an artsy hooker film, Judd Nelson, Mexicans in devil costumes, and that giant killer rat movie we’ve all been waiting for.

The DVDs:
The Iron Lady
Into The Abyss
Sleeping Beauty
The Darkest Hour
King Of Devil’s Island
The Witches Of Oz
The Veteran
The Terror Experiment
A Bird Of The Air
Caught Inside
Rat Scratch Fever
No Body Found

For this week’s Netflix suggestions click here, otherwise keep reading for the DVD details.

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The Iron Lady

Vince’s review damned this film with an ‘F’ grade, so what could possibly compel any FilmDrunk readers to see this?  To be honest, the only thing I can think of is morbid curiosity or a desire to see every film that won a major Oscar.  When Streep won Best Actress the Oscar nerds declared it a crime, saying she robbed the win from Viola Davis.  I say the bigger crime is this winning Best Makeup.  Either way, nobody will remember this movie for its ‘undeserved’ Oscar wins two years from now.  Not because this movie is so forgettable, but because Oscar nerds find something to whine about every year.

Into The Abyss

Werner Herzog directs this documentary about two prisoners who are accomplices in a crime that put one on death row and left the other with life in prison.  Vince was so conflicted in his feelings about this movie that he refrained from adding a final grade to his review, but he does say it is a fascinating film.  All I can say is that I always look forward to Herzog films, and his documentaries in particular, so I’m really curious to see it.  Sorry for the lack of snark on this one. If you insist on a laugh, click on the trailer and see the inappropriate link that pops up in the upper right corner.

Sleeping Beauty

Vince and Burnsy have both expressed their enthusiasm for this film, in which a young woman becomes a prostitute who takes drugs in order to remain comatose while her clients have their way with her.  I should probably make a lazy but obvious joke about having sex with her must just be like having sex with my wife, but I won’t.  Besides, it’s simply not true: my wife’s wide awake when we have sex.  She’s just asleep before I’ve finished.  WHACKITY SCHMACKITY DOO!

The Darkest Hour

You might not remember this sci-fi/horror flick as it barely got any advertising.  This is the one where that guy from Speed Racer and that girl from Juno who wasn’t Juno are in Russia or somewhere and alien electricity eats people or something. They use light bulbs as bait, I think.  This looks like something that was made for the Syfy channel and they somehow accidentally got their first choices for the cast so they figured they had better release it to theaters.

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King Of Devil’s Island

Stellan Skarsgård stars in this Norwegian film about a juvenile detention community and the inmates’ resistance to their cruel and oppressive captors.  If you couldn’t guess, this is supposed to be based on a true story.  I’m sure this is just my xenophobia, but this looks especially scary and foreboding because nobody is speaking English.  Plus, ‘Devil’s Island’?  It’s as if they are trying to imply this place was hell on earth. Might as well have called it King Of Prison Rape Cove.

The Witches Of Oz

See if you can follow this:  This movie was originally shot with a theatrical release in mind, then re-edited into a miniseries for cable, then re-re-edited, with some re-shot footage for a theatrical release after it aired on TV.  The theatrical version (which is over an hour shorter than the TV version) is the director’s preferred cut.  Needless to say, this DVD release is the longer TV edit (164 minutes) and no one involved likes this version.  If that and the title hasn’t sold you on it already, I’ll point out it stars Sean Astin and Ethan Embry (as characters named Frick and Frack) and Christopher Lloyd as the Wizard of Oz.  Simply awful.


As the box cover so helpfully explains, this is the ‘flipside of Lost In Translation’.  You see, instead of Americans experiencing Japan, this is about some Japanese people experiencing America. There’s a moment in the trailer where an American guy says to the Japanese girl, “I don’t know what you’re saying, and I’m telling you how I feel and it’s like, you don’t even care.”  That’s so true, isn’t it?  We always mistake miscommunication for ambivalence.  I guess what I’m saying is, that opening shot from Lost In Translation, where it’s just Scarlett Johansson’s ass, was pretty great.

The Veteran

A British soldier returns from combat to the U.K. and wreaks havoc at the behest of Brian Cox.  At a few points in the trailer, it implies that he kills young kids.  It’s OK, though, because it was all inter-cut with shots of guns and drugs, like he’s cleaning up the streets.  I don’t know if this looks good or bad, but I’ll definitely be turning on the subtitles if I watch it.  I can barely understand “street” language as it is, let alone when spoken with British accents.

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