Wednesday, May 1, 2013

This Week in DVD and Instant Watching

Silver Linings Playbook: I may be oversimplifying the premise of this hit/Oscar contender somewhat, but as I understand it, David O. Russell's film equates mental illness with rooting for the Philadelphia Eagles. This is a major cinematic breakthrough that I think we all slept on last year. It's about time we got that kind of truth telling in American cinema again. You know, like Rudy Ray Moore used to give us.

Broken City: A guy deals with a corrupt system in a "broken city." How can a city be broken unless, say, Godzilla, is smashing it? Well, we can all agree that somehow Detroit would qualify as a broken city, but otherwse...give me Godzilla! The fact is seen this kind movie dozens of times before, but I'll always be willing to give this movie a shot. Interesting cast in this version, too--Mark Wahlberg, Russell Crowe, and Catherine Zeta-Jones, who was off the radar for a while and now seems to turn up on this list every week.  I'd love to see this cast interact with Godzilla.

Not Fade Away: David Chase tells a highly personal tale about rock and roll in the 1960s. We know the title is authentic because Chase, of course, doesn't fade away; he just cuts right to a black screen.

The Guilt Trip: No, no, no, NO! This is one of those movies that offends just by virtue of--of being. I give Seth Rogen credit for trying to sell this one. Actually, I don't. He was probably high the whole time.

Ben Hur: I hardly KNEW her! (Sorry, I have a cold this week, and I blame it for shorting my brain) Not the Chuck Heston classic, but rather the version that aired on Ovation. This one looked surprisingly credible, and so did Kristin Kruek. Lovely lass, but I wouldn't have thought of her for a period epic.

WWE Best of In Your House: Ah, travel back to the days when the WWF (as it was then) expanded its PPV lineup with a foray into monthly, lower-cost events. Of course now the thing that seems quaint is "the "lower-cost" part.

In Streaming...

The big news is thousands of catalog titles expiring from Netflix today, but, hey, titles are, uh, trickling in all the time...or at least most of the time. Wouldja believe...every now and then? Here are a few added Instant Watch titles this past week:

What to Exect When You're Expecting: Well, I think the idea of adapting the perennial bestseller is a bit silly, but I'll bet this film is a hell of a lot more entertaining than the one I saw in junior high Health.

Small Town Security Season 1: There are some shows that arrive on Netflix and make you feel good about being a subscriber. Then there are shows that arrive on Netflix and make you feel sorry you own a television. Fortunately I got most of my "Small Town Security" angst out of my system when in aired on AMC as a spectacularly ill-suited companion for "Breaking Bad."

Hoodwinked Too: I thought the first one was terrible, and somehow the use of "Too" to delineate the sequel doesn't fill me with hope of improvement.

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