Yes, today is the day that those of you who like mediocre attempts at cinematic franchise-building packed inside the noggin of an Oscar-winner made to look utterly embarrassing have been waiting for. Own The Amazing Spider-Man 2 on Blu-ray in a blue head, and you too can enjoy deleted scenes that make the movie even worse, like the alternate ending in which Peter’s dad shows up alive to deliver the “With great power…” line, because in this reality, that’s just another thing Uncle Ben fucked up.
if you own a 3D TV, the action sequences should give it a workout. If you don’t, and you must buy it, pretend you got it so you can make out with Jamie Foxx’s lifeless replica lips, or have sex with his mouth…that’s less embarrassing than the alternative: that you wish to view the movie multiple times. Accept it as a gift to be polite if you need to.
Leviathan – People forget that not only was 1989 the year of superheroes and sequels; it was also the year of competing underwater monster movies! Everyone remembers eventual winner The Abyss (though it was considered a flop at the time), but few remember Roger Corman’s DeepStar 6, or George P. Cosmatos’ Leviathan, a decent Alien/The Thing ripoff in which Peter Weller, Daniel Stern, Richard Crenna, Amanda Pays, Ernie Hudson and others discover a genetic experiment gone bad in an abandoned Russian freighter. Scream Factory apparently couldn’t find a ton of extras to put on this disc, as it only includes interviews with creature creators Alec Gillis and Tom Woodruff Jr., and lowest-billed Hector Elizondo. Well worth a look if you’re bored of Alien or The Thing and want something quite similar.
“Toy Story of Terror!” – Carl Weathers makes his Pixar debut as military action figure Combat Carl, a new ally of Buzz and Woody who helps them against an online scalper and his pet iguana in this horror-movie homage that’s not too scary but packed with in-jokes. Also included are the three Toy Story theatrical shorts that played with other Pixar films, this time with commentary tracks.
The Flintstones – I don’t have a problem with the John Goodman Flintstones movie; I think it’s as good a live-action movie as you could possibly do with such an inherently cheesy, cartoony concept (and the prequel with Mark Addy bears that out). But I will never own it, and here’s why: I used to have the poster up in my college apartment until I realized it was making me subconsciously sing the damn song non-stop. I trashed the poster, and the music left my head.
Rampage: Capital Punishment – White House Down may yet not be the worst action movie set in the White House and directed by a German…you’ve seen Roland Emmerich’s take, and now here’s the Uwe Boll version!
Sorceress – Identical twin blonde Playmates star in Roger Corman’s attempt at cashing in on Conan, in a fantasy movie that also includes a masturbating goat boy, flying lion and disembodied head creature. Sounds worth a look.
Only Lovers Left Alive – Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston play art-snob bloodsuckers in Jim Jarmusch’s typically offbeat take on the vampire mythology.
The Sacrament – Ti West makes a horror movie that’s basically about Jim Jones, without ever specifically calling it that. I hope Kool-Aid Man shows up in the sequel. Oh yeah.
The Quiet Ones – This recent Hammer horror with Jared Harris, about supernatural experiments at Oxford in the ’70s, is “inspired by actual events.” Guess what, people – so is everything ever written. No idea comes from a complete vacuum, so any piece of writing ever is in some way inspired by actual events even if the writer doesn’t consciously think of it that way, and even if said events are “writer sits down at his computer, then turns it on.” Which is to say they can make any old bullshit up and that tagline is still accurate.
Rosemary’s Baby – No, not that one. The Zoe Saldana TV version.
Jarhead 2: Field of Fire – If Sam Mendes weren’t such an overrated, self-important director, we could fairly compare this to somebody making Full Metal Jacket 2: Iraqi Boogaloo. Mendes’ original, still his best film (no, not Skyfall), was a based-on-an-autobiography tale which starred Jake Gyllenhaal as a Marine who wants to see combat, then gets to Kuwait and finds the war over almost before it’s really begun. So OF COURSE there’s now a direct-to-video sequel starring Cole Hauser as a guy who kicks Taliban ass in Afghanistan. I do love me some Cole Hauser, admittedly – he’s the only guy I’ve ever seen who can overact and underact at the same time.
Those are my picks this week. What can you add?