I’m a pretty big genre-film fan. I love the way genre films exist within a certain set or rules and then find a way to bend them in interesting ways (the good ones do anyways). S. Craig Zahler is a genre filmmaker par excellence who both revels in the the way those films are able to trigger the more sensitive members of an audience and is an actual, truly good filmmaker. His latest, Dragged Across Concrete, stars Mel Gibson (a fact all on its own that will piss some folks off) and Vince Vaughan as a couple of racist cops who get suspended for forcibly pushing their boot onto a Latino drug dealer’s throat, and spend their down time trying to rob a gang who have just robbed a bank.
It's filled with racism, sexism, and extreme violence. There is hardly a character that’s not despicable. Yet it's really well made and very entertaining. Definitely not for everyone but those with the stomach to take it are in for a treat. You can read my full review here.
Also out this week that looks interesting:
Police Story/Police Story 2 (Criterion Collection): The good people at Criterion finally get a little class with two classic Jackie Chan movies.
Serenity: Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Diane Lane, Jason Clarke, and Djimon Hounsou star in this drama about a fishing boat captain whose mysterious past catches up with him.
Arctic: Mads Mikkelsen stars in this drama about a man stranded in the arctic who must make a difficult decision when a rescue team shows up.
Krustalyvov, My Car!!: Arrow Academy brings us this Russian version of Dude, Where’s My Car? Nah, it's a much more thoughtful-sounding film about a military doctor accused of being a participant of the so called “doctor’s plot” in Stalinist Russia.
Emanuelle and Francoise: If the deluge of Emmanuelle films from a few weeks ago didn’t satisfy your undying need for arty European erotica, then perhaps this Joe D’Amato knock-off will.
Fantomas 1960s Collection: The character of Fantômas is one of the most famous in the history of French crime stories. The books were written throughout the early 20th century and this collection of three films (Fantômas, Fantômas Unleashed, and Fantômas vs. Scotland Yard) was a huge success in the 1960s. The films are kind of like James Bond plus slapstick, and are loads of fun. I’ll have a full review soon.
Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki: Documentary about the man behind so many beloved Studio Ghibli films and his first attempt to use CGI animation, instead of his beloved hand-drawn style.
The Pink Panther Cartoon Collection: Volume 5: Kino Lorber continues to put out the complete works of this beloved cartoon series.