RUNDOWN: Weekly Releases for 10/21/13

The Internship

20th Century Fox / 2013 / 119 Minutes / Rated PG-13

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Rarely does lightening strike twice, especially in Hollywood. Nevertheless studio executives clearly are eager to chase the chemistry in one blockbuster hit and try to follow-up the magic in another film. Such is the case for the dead-on-arrival comedy 'The Internship'. Director Shawn Levy seems intent on recapturing the magic in the international hit comedy 'The Wedding Crashers' by repairing the comedic styling's of the laid back Owen Wilson and rapid fire sarcasm of Vince Vaughn but unfortunately the result falls a mile short.

The film's conceit is actually quite promising: two recently laid-off men in their 40s try to make it as interns at a successful Internet company where their managers are in their 20s. Co-written by Vaughn, the story plays out with all the expected clichés of out-of-touch middle agers trying to compete with their tech savvy twenty-something counterparts. Vaughn and Wilson try desperately to keep up with the times while playing down their real ages as "old school" tries to teach "new school" a lesson about ageism in the workplace. But will these two dinosaurs find a place in a world of cutting age technology? Perhaps. But just don't expect 'Wedding Crasher' type laughs or shenanigans.

Extras include the featurette Any Given Monday, Theatrical and Unrated Audio Commentary with Shawn Levy, some deleted scenes as well as the film's theatrical trailer.

Dead in Tombstone

Universal / 2013 / Rated R

Blu ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

'Dead in Tombstone' is a direct-to-video Tarantino inspired Western fantasy that bypassed theaters in favor of video boxes across America. With a decent cast starring Mickey Rourke, Anthony Michael Hall, and genre superstar Danny Trejo, director Roel Reiné makes the most of his actor's abilities as he puts them through their paces in a tongue-in-cheek script.

The story concerns a ruthless gang in the midst of overrunning a small mining town, inadvertently murder their own leader, Guerrero Hernandez (Trejo), in a cold-blooded deal gone bad. Sentenced to eternity in hell, Guerrero finds himself confronted by Satan himself (Rourke), who offers the former thug with a potent proposition: deliver the six souls of his former gang in exchange for his freedom of eternal damnation. With time running out, he sets out on a brutal rampage to avenge his own death. A frothy mixture of gratuitous violence and kitschy dialogue keep the mayhem at a rapid fire pace until the film's bitter ending.

Extras are plentiful including feature Commentary with Director Roel Reiné, The Making of Dead in Tombstone, Deleted Scenes, Deleted Shots Montage, as well as featurettes Horses, Guns & Explosions, Roel Reiné: The Leader of the Gang, A Town Transformed, as well as Creating Hell: The Visual Effects.

The Way Back

20th Century Fox / 2013 / 103 Minutes / Rated PG-13

Blu ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Fresh off their Oscar win for best screenplay for last year's surprise hit 'The Descendants', writer-directors Nat Faxon and Jim Rash have mixed results with their sophomore effort, 'The Way Back'. With an eclectic cast including Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Allison Janney, AnnaSophia Robb, Sam Rockwell, and Maya Rudolph, this underrated coming of age comedy-drama is an unexpected pleasure mining some terrific performances as well as a nice dose of poignancy while never sacrificing some well-earned laughs.

This charming tale involves the plight of 14-year-old Duncan (Liam James) who goes on summer vacation with his mother, Pam (Collette), her overbearing boyfriend, Trent Carell), and his daughter, Steph (Zoe Levin). Having a rough time fitting in, the introverted Duncan finds an unexpected friend in gregarious Owen (Rockwell), manager of the Water Wizz water park. Through his funny, clandestine friendship with Owen, Duncan slowly opens up to and despite always felling like an outcast finally starts to find his way in the world. Consistently funny and original, 'The Way Back' will undoubtedly find its niche as a cult comedy like 'Office Space' and will only get better with age.

Extras are plentiful including Behind the Scenes Featurettes: Tour of the Water Park, The Filmmakers: Jim & Nat, Ensemble Featurettes, More laughs with the hilarious cast & filmmakers in the Making of The Way, Way Back, as well as deleted scenes.

Before Midnight

Sony / 2013 / 108 Minutes / Rated R

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Richard Linklater directs 'Before Midnight', the third chapter of his romantic drama starring Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy. The trilogy began almost a decade ago with 'Before Sunrise' (1995) and 'Before Sunset' (2004). If you're a fan of the first two, this third chapter will not disappoint as it builds off the momentum its predecessors as well as the terrific on-screen chemistry of its leads.

Almost two decades have passed since American Jesse (Hawke) and Frenchwoman Céline (Delpy) met on a trans-European train and fell in love while wandering the streets of Vienna. Jesse wrote a novel based on the experience that became a US bestseller and led him to meet Céline again after an interval of almost a decade, where the spark of their initial encounter was still present. The latest installment finds the pair living as a couple in Paris, now proud parents to two young girls. Beyond the surfaces, however, their lives are far from perfect. Frustrated at her inability to match Jesse's professional success, Céline is considering a change in career. Jesse, meanwhile, is struggling to connect with his teenage son Hank (Seamus Davey-Fitzpatrick) from a previous marriage, who is visiting from Chicago for the summer.

Extras include some terrific audio commentary with Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy and director Richard Linklater, featurette Revisiting Jesse & Céline, as well as Q&A with Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy and Richard Linklater.

Only God Forgives

Starz/Anchor Bay / 2013 / 90 Minutes / Rated R

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Art house crime thriller 'Only God Forgives' had a tough time finding audiences upon its limited theatrical release. Hoping to be buoyed by positive reviews and good word of mouth, this visually stylized thriller sadly managed to find either despite a terrific cast including Ryan Gosling, Kristin Scott Thomas, and Vithaya Pansringarm. Not entirely unsuccessful, however, director Nicolas Winding Refn does manage to weave an intriguing if not completely shocking tale that promises to polarize its audience.

Set in Bangkok, Julian (Gosling) is lying low after killing a cop a decade earlier. Making a living running a Thai boxing club as a cover for his family's drugs business, things are anything but quiet and tranquil. When his brother kills a local prostitute and is then slain in retribution, Julian's mother Jenna ( Thomas) arrives in the city demanding that he track down the killer and is set out to avenge his death. After learning that the man responsible is a retired police officer and lone dispenser of justice known as 'The Angel of Vengeance' (Vithaya Pansringarm), Julian becomes determined to settle the score for once and for all.

Extras include Audio Commentary with Director Nicolas Winding, Refn and Damon Wise, Two Director Interviews, as well as Behind the Scenes Featurette: The Music of 'Only God Forgives' with Cliff Martinez.

The Vincent Price Collection

Scream Factory / 2013 / Unrated

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

It must be Halloween as Scream Factory has unearthed a treasure trove of Vincent Price Classics of yesteryear and put them all together in a nifty collection chock full of extras. Although tame by today's standards, Price carried the torch as the master of horror through the 1950's and 60's. The set includes 'Fall Of The House Of Usher,' 'The Haunted Palace,' 'The Masque Of Red Death,' 'The Pit and the Pendulum,' 'Witchfinder General' (plus 'The Conqueror Worm'), and 'The Abominable Dr. Phibes.'

With each film, Scream Factory has unearthed a plethora of extras. Starting with 'Fall of the House of Usher', extras include Vintage and rare Introduction and final words from Vincent Price, Audio Commentary with Roger Corman, Vincent Price Retrospective Commentary with author Lucy Chase Williams featuring Pitor Michael as the voice of Vincent Price, Audio interview with Vincent Price by historian David Del Valle, the film's theatrical trailer as well as a still gallery.

'The Haunted Palaces' comes with Vintage and rare Introduction and final words from Vincent Price, Audio Commentary by author Lucy Chase Williams (The Complete Films of Vincent Price) and Richard Heft, Audio Commentary by author Tom Weaver, A Change of Poe- an interview with director Roger Corman, the film's theatrical trailer and still gallery.

'The Masque of the Red Death' includes Vintage and rare Introduction and final words from Vincent Price, Audio Commentary by author Steve Haberman (Silent Screams: The History of the Silent Horror Film), and Interview with Roger Corman, the film's theatrical trailer and still gallery.

With 'The Pit and the Pendulum', there's also Vintage and rare Introduction and final words from Vincent Price, Rare Prologue,

Audio Commentary with Roger Corman, theatrical trailer and still gallery. 'Witchfinder General' includes Vintage and rare Introduction and final words from Vincent Price, Audio Commentary with producer Philip Waddilove and actor Ian Ogilvy, Witchfinder General: Michael Reeves' Horror Classic. Vintage Interview with Vincent Price conducted by film historian David Del Valle (1987),

Vincent and Victoria: an Interview with Victoria Price, the film's theatrical trailer as well as Still Galleries.

CINERAMA: South Seas Adventure

Emphasis Entertainment / 1958 / Unrated

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

A true spectacle of its day, Emphasis Entertainment has unearthed the 1958 travelogue adventure 'Cinerama: South Seas Adventure'. Directed by Carl Dudley, Richard Goldstone, Francis D. Lyon, Walter Thompson and Basil Wrangell, this visual spectacular proved to be the 5th and last of the original, 3-panel Cinerama travelogues. Released in 1958, this Cinerama presentation includes five separate stories woven out of a series of theoretical, island-hopping voyages that start en route to Hawaii, and after traversing the South Seas as far as Australia, end up flying back home from Honolulu.

Unseen theatrically since the early 1970's, and never before issued on home video, this presentation is shown exactly as it was originally, complete with overture, intermission and exit music. Digitally remastered from the original camera negatives, the picture jumps off the screen as originally intended with a visually breathtaking panorama that will leave you breathless. With a partial narration by Orson Welles, this classic from another era will inevitably leave you enchanted, entertained, and longing for a simpler time.

Extras Bonus Features of this set will include interviews with original participants, a vintage Renault promotional film as originally presented in 3-panel Cinerama, clips from "In The Wake of Captain Cook," a Carl Dudley short on the South Seas with behind the scenes filming of SOUTH SEAS ADVENTURE, many behind the scene stills and promotional materials, as well as a booklet reproduction of an original program.

Bruce Lee: The Legacy Collection

Shout Factory / 1971 / 690 Minutes / Rated R

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Fans of martial arts icon Bruce Lee will rejoice with Shout Factory's complete anthology collection dubbed 'The Legacy Collection' which includes the most extensive Blu-ray release of its kind for the master who continues reigns supreme nearly four decades after his untimely demise. This box set includes four of the films that would cement Bruce Lee into the legend he's become.

Considering the forty years that have spanned since their original release, you can't help but watch in awe how well these timeless classics not only hold up but continue to inspire the genre as well as its legion of fans. Starting with 'The Big Boss,' these paper-thin plot lines stories typically involve a revenge plot with Lee as the underdog. Following up his initial success, comes 'Fist Of Fury,' 'Way Of The Dragon' and 'Game Of Death', each standing on their own and never feeling derivative of one another.

Extras include two documentaries 'Bruce Lee: The Legend' (and the original version, 'Bruce Lee: The Man, The Legend') and 'I Am Bruce Lee' as well as over two hours of bonus content exclusive to this set.

Just Like a Woman

Cohen Media Group / 2012 / 90 Minutes / Rated R

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Look like Cohen Media Group has an early Thanksgiving gift with last year's turkey, 'Just Like a Woman' coming out on video. This romantic comedy is short on laughs and romance despite a decent cast including Sienna Miller, Golshifteh Farahani, Bahar Soomekh, Tim Guinee, Roschdy Zem, and Chafia Boudraa. Unfortunately, director Rachid Bouchareb has a hard time standing outside the shadow of a similarly themed film of female empowerment with the 90's smash 'Thelma & Louise'. Lacking the comedy, pathos and performances, 'Just Like a Woman' feels more like a retread than anything remotely original.

This tale of two women, barely more than casual acquaintances, find themselves in for more than they bargained for when they both decided to escape their dreary existence and get on the highway heading to Santa Fe. Marilyn (Miller) dreams of winning a contest held by a famous belly dancing company, while her friend, Mona (Farahani), reveals an unexpected secret. It turns out she's a fugitive from justice, accused of her mother-in-law's death. Never living up to its potential, this quirky comedy has a tough time sustaining the audience's interest--even though it barely clocks in at ninety minutes.

Extras are lacking except for the film's original theatrical trailer.


Blue Underground / 1976 / 80 Minutes / Unrated

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Long before there was 'Hostel' or the sadistic franchise 'Saw' was a small independent exploit horror film called 'Snuff'. Half inspired by the then real life horror show lead by Charles Manson and his followers and a bit of 'Easy Rider' thrown in, this cheap thriller is mostly cheap on the genuine thrills. Time has done little to improve this 1976 horror film directed by husband and wife team Michael and Roberta Findlay and starring a cast of unknowns including Ana Carro, Enrique Larratelli and Clao Villanueva.

This so-called "snuff" movie involves the exploits of a cult leader leading a gang of bikers in a series of supposedly real killings on film. Ripped from the headlines of the Manson murders, this cheap knock-off never really takes off despite its title and promise. At the time the film received a great deal of controversy due to last three-minute scene. Clocking in at barely eighty minutes, this mishmash has a hard time sustaining even for the curious to see what all the hubbub was about.

Extras are nonexistent with the exception of a reversible sleeve with alternate artwork.

I Give it a Year

Magnolia / 2013 / 97 Minutes / Rated R

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Diehard fans of the genre will probably love the aptly titled comedy romance, 'I Give it a Year' regardless of reviewers. That said this midland effort is neither fish nor foul and will probably manage to win the heart of even the most stalwart hopeless romantic. Armed with a decent cast and just enough charm to make it rise above an ABC/Family movie, 'I Give it a Year' may probably have most armchair critics telling their friends "It wasn't that bad." Although that may be the case, it also wasn't that good.

Starring Simon Baker, Rose Byrne, Rafe Spall, Anna Faris, Minnie Driver, and Stephen Merchant, this romantic comedy involves newlyweds Josh and Nat. On the surface this happy couple seems happy but their family and friends aren't convinced the marriage will last. Although hopelessly in love on the surface, the two clearly struggle with one another's differences. When Josh's ex-girlfriend comes into the picture and Nat's handsome American client, will either be tempted to stray when their love hits the skids?

Extras include Making of I Give It A Year: Relationships & Marriages, Making of I Give It A Year: Characters, Cast and Crew Interviews, International Interviews, Bloopers, Outtakes: The Doves, as well as Deleted/Extended Scenes.

That's the Way of the World

Scorpion Releasing / 1975 / 100 Minutes / Unrated

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Scorpion Releasing has dug up an unexpected treasure from 1975, with director Sig Shore's cult classic, 'That's the Way of the World'. Starring Harvey Keitel, Ed Nelson, and Cynthia Bostick this disco drama featured the music of Earth, Wind and Fire and had a #1 soundtrack album, but went belly-up at the box-office. Considering the near forty years that have transpired since the film's less than auspicious debut, time has done a fine job forgiving most wounds as this kitschy callback to a simpler era still manages to sustain with the help of a memorable soundtrack as well an early performance by Keitel.

Coleman Buckmaster (Keitel) is an ambitious young music producer with A-Kord Records. In the midst of recording an up-and-coming group (played by Earth, Wind and Fire), Buckmaster is directed by the president of the record company to focus all of his energies on an unknown trio who call themselves The Pages. Despite better judgment, Buckmaster attempts the impossible as the pressures and corruption of the recording industry begins to bring him to the brink. But where else will you ever find a movie that features "Miss America" host Bert Parks as a child molester and squeaky-clean singer Jimmy Boyd ("I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus") as a junkie?

Extras are sadly nonexistent.

Nightmare City 2035

RARO/ 2007 / 85 Minutes /Not rated

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

Never was a sci-fi adventure was so aptly titled than with the 2007 action fantasy, 'Nightmare City 2035'. Lacking almost entirely of originality, action or adventure, this dead-on-arrival sci-fi almost plays out like a modern day 'Mystery Science Theater' takeoff. Starring Maxwell Caulfield, Alexis Thorpe, Todd Jensen, Stefan Ivanov, Mike McCoy, and Dimo Alexiev, even diehard genre fans will be hard pressed to find anything redeeming in this eighty-five minute intergalactic train wreck.

Set three decades in the future probably to save money on set and costumes, 'Nightmare City' concerns the corrupt regime that broadcasts the illusion of a beautiful city to the chip in your head, when in fact the city is in ruins. Talk about looking at life through rose-colored glasses... until a rebel group discover the truth and decide it's time to start a revolution. The problem is the underlying conspiracy is a bit of a snooze to begin with so it's difficult to root for the outcome for the film's protagonists. It's a shame audiences couldn't have a chip implanted in their head making them believe they're watching a better movie than this is...

Extras are nonexistent which are the least of this year's biggest stinker's problems.

A Tale of Two Sisters

Tartan Video / 2007 / Unrated

Blu-ray Release Date: October 22, 2013

This Halloween's trick or treat bag of video surprises contains a terrific Korean chiller by the name of 'A Tale of Two Sisters'. Writer-director Kim Ji-woon keeps the audience guessing until the film's very last frame with a litany of unexpected twists and turns in this potboiler of a mystery thriller.

Teenaged Su-mi (Im Su-jeong) and her younger sister Su-yeon (Moon Geun-yeong) return home to their father and stepmother after a stay at a mental hospital. Su-mi is outspoken, resentful of her stepmother, and always protective of the more reserved Su-yeon. Shortly after the girls arrive, strange things begin to happen around the house. Su-mi is plagued by horrific nightmares that may or may not be real. Objects seem to replicate themselves. Images of people appear and disappear. But you quickly begin to realize that things are not what they seem as this spooky character thriller slowly begins to peel away the veneer of this idyllic family to uncover an unspeakable horror.

Extra include complete commentary track with the director, cinematographer and lighting director, Complete commentary track with the director and stars of the film, a Behind the scenes featurette, Cast interviews, Deleted scenes, Post-production documentaries and Trailers.


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