New Blu's On the Block - June 12, 2012


Rating: Various

Distributor: Various

Released: June 12, 2012


Written by Sara Michelle Fetters



New Blu's On the Block
Blu-ray and DVD Releases for June 12, 2012

The Criterion Collection unleashed three must-own titles this week, and I expect little to no debate against the statement. As for the rest? Iím sure thereís something to say; quite frankly at the moment Iím just not exactly positive what that would be. Read on and youíll see what I mean.



The Gold Rush Ė Criterion Collection

Easily the highlight of the week, the folks at Criterion bring a third Charlie Chaplin to Blu-ray and to many minds, maybe even my own (Iím so partial to Modern Times, so part of me is torn), The Gold Rush is the iconic filmmakerís finest achievement. At the very least, itís filled with many of his most indelible images and features some incredibly sublime camerawork. Personally, I canít wait to get a look at it, but as Criterion didnít send it over for review Iíll have to wait until Barnes & Nobleís 50%-off sale to do it.



Harold and Maude Ė Criterion Collection

This one I do have and I must say, while Iím not as gigantic a fan of Hal Ashbyís cult favorite as much as some, results are fairly spectacular. This movie has never looked or sounded better, while the collection of special features Criterion have lined up for this release should have fans frothing at the mouth. For the fanatics, this is a day one must-buy. For everyone else, definitely worthy of a look, if only to find out for oneís self just what all the fuss has been about for the best 42 years. For more, check out my recently posted Blu-ray Review.



Shallow Grave Ė Criterion Collection

Danny Boyleís first film hasnít lost an ounce of its flavor or flair, and the fact the Criterion Collection got their mitts on it has me positively ecstatic with glee. This twisty little noir black comedy with Ewan McGregor, Christopher Eccleston and Kerry Fox is a stupendous ride start to finish, its macabre attitude feeling just as fresh today as it did way back in 1994 when it first made waves theatrically. For more on this release, check out my just posted Blu-ray Review.



Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

Hereís what I wrote about this disappointing sequel back in December of last year (read my full review here): ďUnlike the 2009 hit that preceded this one thereís very little mystery to be found here, not much in the way of puzzles in need of being solved. Prof. Moriarty is nothing more than a distaff Max Zorn looking to find his view to a kill, hoping to engender animosity and hatred between nations all to benefit his own pocketbook. Itís a lazy and not altogether interesting premise and to reduce Holmes to this level is something akin to an abomination, and for fans of the character and his literary adventures I canít imagine theyíre going to be remotely pleased by what is transpiring.Ē For more on this release, check out Mitchellís Blu-ray Review.



In Darkness

From my February theatrical review (read it here): ďThere are moments in Agnieszka Hollandís (Europa, Europa) claustrophobic WWII drama In Darkness that are as breathless and as stunning a person is ever likely to seeÖThe terror of the situation, the way shadow, concrete and water engulfs a person into submission, all of it and more continually comes into play, and for long portions of the film I found myself inadvertently shivering right along with those up on the screen.Ē




Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance 3D

Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance

Back in 2007 I wrote the following about this first attempt at bringing Marvelís comic book series Ghost Rider to the big screen: ďThis movie is about as close to a complete waste of time as anything I've [ever] seenÖ [It] is a borderline disaster, and while it will probably have a great opening weekend it's still going to disappear so fast from the multiplexes people will blink only to open their eyes and discover it long gone.Ē I bring those statements up because, somehow, someway, a sequel was actually made to that monstrosity. Even more incredibly, somehow, someway, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, is actually worse than the fairly terrible comic book adventure that preceded it. Donít believe me? Check out Mitchellís Blu-ray Review. A good case could be made he disliked this sequel even more than I did. Incredible, I know.




Iím fairly sad that Lionsgate didnít get me the review copy of the Blu-ray I requested, mainly because Iíve always had a soft spot for this semi-classic Bill Murray comedy and would have loved to have added it to my collection. Granted, considering itís only $7.99 currently on Amazon it seems very likely Iíll be doing that anyhow, showing once more Iím a total slave to my impulses and probably need professional help to help deal with my tendency to cinematic hoarding.



Tyler Perryís Good Deeds

Nothing to see hereÖ move along, move along.



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Donít Go in the Woods

Donít go in the woods is sound advice, especially when there's a killer on the loose. First-time director Vincent DíOnofrio (Full Metal Jacket, Law & Order: Criminal Intent) explores love, greed and ruthlessness in this twisted musical/horror hybrid, telling the story of a young band who heads to the woods to get away from their everyday lives and focus on writing new songs. Hoping to walk away from the trip with new tunes that will score them their big break, they instead find themselves in the middle of a nightmare beyond comprehension. Displaying the musical talents of a gifted ensemble cast as they sing songs penned by acclaimed singer-songwriter Sam Bisbee, Donít Go in the Woods unexpectedly veers from terrifying horror to musical moments that wouldn't be out of place on Glee, truly keeping viewers captivated, terrified and entertained in equal measure. (Description reprinted from Amazon.com)



Miss Minoes

This utterly charming classic family film tells the tale of Miss Minoes, a cat who is transformed into a young woman (Carice van Houten) and befriends Tibbe (Theo Maassen), a shy bumbling cub reporter for the local newspaper. Miss Minoes, still recognized as a cat by the neighborhood felines despite her new appearance, organizes them into a news-gathering service and helps Tibbe become a star reporter. He soon turns investigative and discovers that the popular chairman of the Club For Friends of Animals and boss of a nearby factory has evil plans. (Description reprinted from Amazon.com)



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