Listen closely and you can hear a million voices suddenly cry out in anger that I did not choose Beauty and the Beast as my pick this week. I did consider it, but ultimately decided that I am simply not the fan it deserves. Were my wife writing this article, she’d be all over it, but as it's me and not her, I decided to go in a different direction.
A Cure For Wellness is a psychological thriller from Gore Verbinski. An ambitious executive is sent to a mysterious “wellness center” in the Swiss Alps to rescue his company’s CEO but finds the spa’s treatments to be not what they seem . The reviews have been mixed but everyone agrees it's weird. I like weird. I like Gore Verbinski.
I’ll take that over a live-action remake of a Disney classic.
Also out this week that looks interesting:
Beauty and the Beast: I really did enjoy the film and we will no doubt be buying this sooner or later. There are various “exclusive” versions on Blu-ray so do your research before buying.
The Ticket: Dan Stevens and Malin Ackerman star in this drama about a blind man who can suddenly see and becomes kind of a jerk because of it. That’s a premise that could be really interesting or kind of stupid depending on how well the story is told.
A United Kingdom: Rosamnd Pike, Tom Felton, and Laura Carmichael star in this drama about the Prince of Botswana causing an international stir when he marries a white woman from London in the 1940s.
The Young Pope: Season 1: Jude Law stars in this HBO series about a young American Catholic who faces both internal and external battles as he becomes the new Pontiff.
Bambi (Anniversary Edition): New to the Signature Collection line, it doesn’t seem to have any new bonus material that’s essential, but if you don’t already have it on Blu-ray, now is your chance.
Doctor Who: Series 10, Part 1: I’ve mostly been enjoying this season of Doctor Who. I like the new companion quite a lot, but the stories have been only okay. I always hold off until we get the entire season’s release, but if you are in a hurry, here’s the first half.
Aftermath: Revenge drama starring Arnold Schwarzenegger as a man grieving for his family killed in an airplane accident caused by an air-traffic controller. I’ve not seen any of Arnold’s post-Governor films, but I dig that he’s at least trying to make some interesting dramas rather than just his usual action flicks. [Read David Wangberg's review.]
Voice From the Stone: Emilia Clarke stars in this moody melodrama. Set in 1950s Tuscany, Clarke stars as a solemn nurse sent to aid a young boy who has fallen silent since the sudden passing of his mother.
Van Helsing: Season One: SyFy channel's updated take on the classic Dracula story. This one stars Kelly Overton as Vanessa Helsing - distant relative to the Van Helsing we all know who is resurrected only to find out that vampires have taken over the world.
Ugetsu (Criterion Collection): Classic Japanese film tells the story of two ambitious peasants in the 16th century trying to make their fortunes.
The Assignment: Walter Hill directed this action drama starring Sigourney Weaver, Michelle Rodriguez, and Tony Shalhoub about an ace assassin who is double crossed by gangsters and turned into a woman by a rogue surgeon.