Thursday, December 12, 2013
NEW ON THE SHELF
Kyle (Douglas Booth) and Lola (Miley Cyrus) in "LOL."
"DETENTION," starring Josh Hutcherson and Shanley Caswell. At first glance, "Detention" looks like just another meta-horror "Scream" rip-off, but writer-director Joseph Kahn's well-received genre-masher manages to be clever without being annoying -- no mean feat for a project this self-aware.
"Hunger Games" mini-hunk Hutcherson leads your average ragtag group of high-schoolers fighting back against the serial killer currently picking off fellow students left and right. Leavening this potentially grim scenario is a wealth of pop-culture references that manage to entertain rather that distract, and a terrific supporting cast that even finds a (mostly serious) role for comedian Dane Cook as a hard-nosed principal. Very well done overall, crafted with an obvious affection for bygone horror flicks and teen dramas. Rated R. Running time: 1:33
Suggested retail price: $26.99; Blu-ray $30.99
"LOL," starring Miley Cyrus and Demi Moore. With "Bieber Fever" having usurped the 'tween pop throne once claimed by the former Ms. Montana, the starlet sets her sights on cinema with this compelling if not terribly probing high-school drama. Cyrus navigates the treacherous waters of adolescence, maintaining a relationship with her would-be rocker boyfriend and facing off against her permanently stressed-out mom (Moore). Also, lots of texting, as the title would indicate. Surly teens and fans of Cyrus are clearly the demographic most likely to be entertained by this well-meaning but unavoidably mopey feature. Special features include several making-of featurettes and a commentary from director Lisa Azuelos and cast members Ashley Hinshaw and Lina Esco. Rated PG-13. Running time: 1:37
Suggested retail price: $19.98; Blu-ray $24.99
"HATFIELDS & MCCOYS," starring Kevin Costner and Bill Paxton. Originally broadcast on The History Channel, this faithful and entirely captivating recreation of the feud to end all feuds pits former Confederate allies "Devil" Anse Hatfield (Costner) and Randall McCoy (Paxton) against one another in a notorious series of misunderstandings that eventually led to an all-out bloodbath and became the stuff of legend. Both one of the best TV movies and Westerns in years, Costner and company revive an undervalued genre with class and style. Not rated; contains violence and language. Running time: 4:50
Suggested retail price: $45.99; Blu-ray $55.99
NEW TO BLU-RAY
"FOREVER MARILYN," starring Marilyn Monroe and Charles Coburn. Fads and celebrities come and go, but the mystical beauty of Marilyn Monroe never strays too far from the public consciousness, and this collection of remastered classics should go a long way toward her continued preservation. The films included in the set are the following: "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" (1953); "How to Marry a Millionaire" (1953); "River of No Return" (1954); "There's No Business Like Show Business" (1954); "The Seven Year Itch" (1955); "Some Like it Hot" (1959) and "The Misfits" (1961). Not rated; contains mild sexual content. Running time: 12:23
Suggested retail price: $99.98
"TOTAL RECALL: MIND-BENDING EDITION," starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sharon Stone. Gleefully violent, rather loose 1990 adaptation of a Philip K. Dick story gives Schwarzenegger one of his best roles as the perpetually angry and confused Douglas Quaid, who may or may not be a secret agent fighting bad guys (including villain extraordinaire Michael Ironside of "ER") on Mars.
This is released in tandem with the 2012 remake, but we can't see how that one will possibly compare to the awesomely rubbery makeup effects and general nasty attitude on display here, courtesy of the always entertaining Paul Verhoeven ("Starship Troopers"). Rated R for graphic violence, nudity and language. Running time: 1:53
Suggested retail price: $14.99
"LAST DAYS HERE," documentary. This acclaimed doc from directors Don Argott ("Rock School") and Demian Fenton is about as personal as movies get. We're introduced to Bobby Liebling, an unsung '70s pioneer in the realm of heavy metal with his band Pentagram. Underground recordings of Pentagram have become something of a sensation in the collector world, a fact Liebling is only dimly aware of until making the acquaintance of Sean Pelletier, a hardcore fan with some connections looking to put Bobby back in the spotlight where he belongs. Hampering this possibility to a profound extent is Bobby's crack and heroin habit, and a lack of interaction with humankind due to a lifetime spent in his parents' basement.
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