Wednesday, December 18, 2013

This Week in DVD and Instant Watching--Pre-Holiday Week edition

Elysium: This didn't look all that hot to me, but I loved "District 9," so I'll check out anything done by the guy who directed that. "Elysium" is about...uh, dystopia of some kind...and Matt Damon has a shaved head. Geez, I've already forgotten much of what the deal is with this. That's not necessarily a knock on the movie. I just have a lot on my mind what with the holidays and all, you know.

The Family: Believe it or not, there was once a time when Robert DeNiro was typecast in gritty crime movies and not wacky comedies about oddball families.

The Lone Ranger: Eh, a big budget Western with an unknown as the "star" and the box office draw playing the sidekick. What could possibly go wrong? Purists would love to say they screwed with the classic mythology, I'm sure, but really, I don't think the character has much cachet anymore, and it saddens me to say that. I think the movie just didn't look all that great. Well, now we can all judge it for ourselves. Or we could just watch a bunch of episodes of the old TV show.

Prisoners: Hugh Jackman AS YOU'VE NEVER SEEN HIM BEFORE! Except maybe when he PLAYED THE WOLVERINE! Only this time, he's not a superhero but AN ACTUAL DUDE! And he's pissed and looking for RETRIBUTION!

One Direction: This Is Us: Morgan Spurlock followed the band for this documentary film. He probably would rather eat Big Macs for 30 days again.

Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters and Kick-Ass 2: These movies have a lot in common. They're both relatively unheralded, underperforming sequels, they both...uh, well, maybe they don't have a lot in common. Yeah, don't show "Kick-Ass 2" to your kids when you're looking for something to watch as a family on Christmas night.

Justified Season 4: I'd really love to try to get into "Justified" again, but not if I have to get Amazon Prime to see the old episodes. Everything should be on Netflix or Hulu until/unless I get Amazon Prime. What? Sounds like a reasonable philosophy to me.

Sound of Music Live: Well, jeez, it's not live NOW, is it? I fully expect a class action lawsuit to be filed any day now.

Shameless Season 3: I've never seen an episode of this Showtime series, but after seeing Emmy Rossum's photo shoot for "Esquire," well, let's just say I'd consider giving it a watch.

And in streaming...

Sadly, Warner Archive Instant apparently took the week off and added nothing new this weekend. Bummer! Hulu seems to add a handful of new anime and Korean programs each week, but I really don't know anything about them and, frankly, don't get excited.

Netflix added David Chase's Not Fade Away with James Gandolfini, and that's the big must-queue for me. There are also 2013 comedy specials from Dave Foley and Greg Fitzsimmons.

Lilyhammer Season 2 is here. That's right, an entire season of a Netflix original. Yet this is getting about 5% of the publicity that the trailer for Season 2 of "House of Cards" got.

Other new adds include Our Nixon, a documentary centered around home movies of Richard Nixon; and Stranded, which features Christian Slater as an astronaut dealing with some kind of alien spore menace. I'm strangely interested in both of these. You can stream the latest Diablo Cody joint, Paradise, which sadly has nothing to do with the classic Phoebe Cates/Willie Aames "Blue Lagoon" ripoff. And I don't know anything about Blood except that it's a gritty crime movie with Paul Bettany, Mark Strong, and Brian Cox, and that's at least worth a queue position.

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