December 27, 2012

DVD Releases

New on the shelf: 'Premium Rush' / 'Resident Evil: Retribution' / 'The Words'

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Bradley Cooper in “The Words.”

CBS Films

Suggested retail price: $19.99; Blu-ray $22.98.

NEW TO BLU-RAY

"DEATH SHIP," George Kennedy, Richard Crenna. Cult fave from 1980 if nothing else has the distinction of being one of the few horror films that features an enormous boat as its principal antagonist, a sinister freighter that plows into an ocean liner full of vacationing socialites and then proceeds to possess them with the spirit of the Nazis that once manned its decks when the unsuspecting tourists opt to board "Death Ship." Cheesy '80s goodness with B-movie mainstays Kennedy and Crenna glowering with their customary aplomb. Special features include deleted scenes. Rated R. Running time: 1:31.

Suggested retail price: $26.95.

"SOMETIMES A GREAT NOTION," Paul Newman, Henry Fonda. Great forgotten classic from 1970 is a gorgeous and at times needfully frustrating portrait of the Stamper family, an independent logging company led by steadfast patriarch Fonda who continue to fell trees and toil in the woods in spite of an ongoing strike freezing other loggers in the area. Based on a novel by Ken Kesey, "Notion," while at times melodramatic, is an effective and consistently surprising drama with several unforgettable scenes. Rated PG. Running time: 1:54.

Suggested retail price: $19.97.

VIDEOPORT PICK

"KILLER JOE," Matthew McConaughey, Emile Hirsch. A textbook "not for all tastes" film, master director William Friedkin ("The Exorcist"; "The French Connection") exhibits a full return to form with this unapologetically lurid and at times downright evil jet-black comedy, and speaking of returning to form, we have McConaughey busting out the best performance of his career as the titular "Joe," a Texan cop with a sideline in contract killing, who becomes involved with a none-too-wily clan of trailer park residents who come to him for help with dispatching their matriarch in an attempt to collect on an insurance policy. What follows is pure Southern gothic insanity, with scenes of raw violence and disturbing sexuality that would be well-nigh unwatchable were it not for the undercurrent of comedy provided by screenwriter Tracy Letts ("Bug"), the fearless performances by the first-rate cast (which also includes Thomas Haden Church and Gina Gershon), and above all the sure-handed, take-no-prisoners direction by Friedkin. Not rated, contains language, strong sexual content, violence, drug content and graphic nudity. Running time: 1:42.

Suggested retail price: $19.98; Blu-ray $24.99.

-- Courtesy of Videoport

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