There’s only one really big movie hitting DVD this week, and it’s G.I. Joe: Retaliation. If you’ve already seen Channing Tatum and his friend The Rock play army, rest assured there’s still plenty of new stuff hitting your local purveyor of physical media. We’ve got damsels in distress and superheroes. We’ve got con artists and investment bankers. We’ve got dying tigers and aging lesbians. We’ve even got a movie that’s currently rating a full 100% on Rotten Tomatoes. Yes, it truly is a great week for DVDs, especially if you’re really into old, Oscar-winning actresses starring in movies you’ve never heard of.
G.I. Joe: Retaliation
Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox
Assault On Wall Street
A Night For Dying Tigers
The Last Will And Testament Of Rosalind Leigh
An Awkward Sexual Adventure
55 & Older
Streaming: Check out your choices here.
Curious which movie snagged that 100%? Continue reading and you’ll figure out which one it is in no time. Don’t know what a rushlight is? It’s a type of candle. That one’s a freebee. Continue reading and you’ll see that candles don’t ever get mentioned again in this post. As always, you can use that streaming link above to skip right to the Netflix suggestions, but if you do you’ll never know why it is scientifically verifiable that black licorice is terrible.
The Joes are back in this amazing sequel. Well, some of them are back. I’m pretty sure it’s just two of them, actually. The point is, Channing Tatum and the guy who spent a good chunk of the movie in a ninja helmet are back to fight the villains, who to be fair, have a slightly higher returning-actor ratio. (There’s three of ‘em.) I guess the mummy from The Mummy and Darth Maul and that one guy from Brazil –the movie, not the country- are more committed to completing the epic story begun by the first film then a certain Wayans brother I could name. Luckily, Dwayne Johnson (The Rock goes by his real name when it’s a prestige picture, I guess), and Bruce Willis have stepped in to class up what might otherwise be a shameless cash-grab sequel of a mediocre film that’s sole selling point was nostalgia for a television show which was itself created only to sell toys. No, we are instead gifted with a cinematic joy that was created with only the purest artistic intent: The director is the same auteur who gave us not only Step Up 2: The Streets and Step Up 3D, but also that Justin Bieber documentary. Also, as you surely know, the film was delayed for months so that Channing Tatum’s role could be fattened up in light of his rising status as an A-list movie star –a feat that can only be achieved when working from the most finely crafted and thematically complex scripts. Obviously, the powers that be were insistent upon making the best film possible without concern for financial matters, and their gamble paid off as this sequel was number one at the box office for its opening weekend, and even happens to be Bruce Willis’ best opening ever. It’s nice to see that once in a while ticket-buyers know that there’s more to movies than blatant pandering to test-market trends and brand familiarity, and knowing is half the battle.
Three life-long friends go off together to an island on a girls’ weekend getaway, but their fun turns to terror and they must fight for their lives when their paths cross with some crazy war vets. Just last week FilmDrunk featured a post by guest contributor Alex Horton that used this film –and specifically its portrayal of veterans- as a basis for dissecting the trend of showing vets to be unstable and violent, and that post covers the topic -and this film- far better than I could here. In short, Mr. Horton asserts that the crazy vet stereotype has become so pervasive in our entertainment that it is affecting how vets are treated in the real world. For her part, Black Rock’s director and star, Katie Aselton, stresses that the film was made with no deliberate desire to besmirch veterans, and that people should see the film before they pass judgment. Well, I’m neither a vet nor have I seen the film (although Alex is and has, so his criticisms certainly remain valid) so I’ll refrain from passing judgment either way. On the one hand, not being a vet I can’t say how they are treated by the larger community, be it good or bad. Just so, having not seen the movie, I can’t say if I think it is being unfair in its portrayal of veterans or not. I can only say that I’d like to think that I –personally- am smart enough to not have my beliefs shaped by the entertainment I consume, and instead I form my own opinions based on personal experience. For instance, I probably would never see this movie regardless of the bad guys being vets because the women should’ve known better about going to this island in the first place. I mean, it’s called ‘Black Rock’; it’s right there in the title. If there’s one thing a lifetime of personal experience watching movies has taught me, it’s that no person, place, or thing can be any good if it can in any way be described as ‘black’. That’s just science.
With the success of Lucasfilm’s The Marvel Avengers, DC Comics is trying to cash in by creating their own all-new super team –the Justice League- and giving them this straight-to-DVD cartoon debut. Whereas the big budget film from summer 2012 dazzled us with well-known superheroes like The Iron-man and Captain Amazing, this pathetic film’s sorry stable of ‘super’ heroes has such newly-created duds as Flash (a guy who gets his power to time travel by running in a magical red track suit), and Aquatic Man, a dude who –and this has got to be the stupidest super power ever- speaks with fish. Apparently Flash runs around the Earth so fast that he reverses time (a concept stupid enough that it would never be in any theatrically released comic book film) and in the process creates a butterfly effect and the new reality is worse than the old one so Flash has to ask Bat-Man to help fix things. I know Bat-Man and his uncle Super-Man are the only real comic characters DC has, but do they really need to shoe-horn them into every piece of crap they create? What’s next, a live-action Bat-Man/Super-Man crossover film? Where’s the artistic integrity? No wonder Hearth Ledger refused to return for The Dark Night Rising.
Some guy from that new Dallas reboot and some girl from that Teen Wolf TV show play con artists in a small Texas town and Beau Bridges is the straight-to-DVD actor who resents his younger brother Jeff for being a beloved Oscar-winning pop-culture icon who only gets cooler and more popular with age. Also stars Aidan ‘For the last time, I’m not Tony Goldwyn‘ Quinn.
Dominic Purcell headlines a cast that also includes Edward Furlong, Clint Howard, and of course, Eric Roberts in this modern day revenge tale from writer/director Uwe Boll. Purcell’s character is just an average guy until the evil bankers take all of his money and ruin his life, so he gets a bunch of guns and shoots everyone on Wall Street or something. At this time I feel it is necessary to share the final words of the official synopsis: