Steve Buscemi is one of those guys. Or should I say he’s one of those “oh, that guy” in that nearly everybody who watches TV and movies knows his face but may not know his name. He’s an actor who when you see him you might smile, nod, and go something like, “Hey, it’s that guy, the one from the thing.” I’ve loved him since the '90s when I watched him in films like Resevoir Dogs, Living in Oblivion, and Fargo.
Dude has been in everything. He’s like Samuel L. Jackson, who will take about any role just to keep working. He’s been in quirky independent films from directors like Jim Jarmusch, the Coen Brothers, and Quentin Tarantino and gigantic blockbusters like Con Air and the Transformers movies. He’s played in dumb, broad comedies like Billy Madison and The Ridiculous 6. He’s got a long list of television appearances as well, including a starring role in Boardwalk Empire. He’s also an accomplished director having helmed several movies and lots of television episodes.
It is his work as a director that I’m interested in this week. Though he has directed lots of television shows, he’s only got six theatrical films where he is listed as director on IMDB. I’ve only watched one of them (in fact, I’ve only heard of that one). Trees Lounge was an interesting tale of a lovable loser. It was good, if I recall correctly, but not great. But it made me want to see more of what can do behind the camera.
Animal Factory was made in 2000 and stars Edward Furlong as a young, privileged kid who is sent to prison on marijuana charges. He’s taken under the wing of a prison veteran played by Willem Dafoe. It's based on a book by Edward Bunker, who had in reality spent time in prison for a variety of offenses.
Arrow Video is releasing it which means it should get a good transfer and will be loaded with special features. Sounds good to me.
Also out this week that looks interesting:
Logan Lucky: Here's where I admit my sins. I wrote the Animal Factory piece several weeks ago, but then they changed its release date so I had to rewrite a new Pick of the Week that week and saved Animal Factory for today. Had I known it was coming out the same week as Logan Luck,y I'd never have picked Animal Factory. But I'm lazy and I'm past my deadline and so Animal Factory gets my pick this week. But Logan Lucky is a great new film from Steven Soderbergh. My review.
Woodshock: Kirsten Dunst stars in this psychological thriller about a woman who falls into deep paranoia after taking a drug. (In his review, David Wangberg found it to be "a hypnotic mess".)
The Tragically Hip: Long Time Running: Documentary about the endearing Canadian rockers.
The Woman in Red: Silly sex romp from Gene Wilder. I wrote a review.
Rememory: Peter Dinklage, Jule Ormond, and the late Anton Yelchin star in this thriller about about a man who uses a device that can record and play back a persons unfiltered memories to solve a murder.
Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life: The nostalgia train keeps on a comin' with yet another limited series based upon a beloved show from a few years back.