I love the last few weeks before Christmas, at least from a new Blu-ray release point of view. To get every last penny out of shoppers, movie companies put out their best, shiniest and most interesting films. This is also the last good week we’ll see for awhile as January and usually February our typically lousy in the new release department.
I had to debate a little this week on what I’d pick but ultimately decided on what I’m most excited to see. Darren Aronofsky is one of the most interesting filmmakers around. His films (which include Pi, Requiem for a Dream, The Wrestler, Black Swan and Noah) aren’t always great but they are always interesting. He has a unique visual style and a way of presenting a story to the world that is all his own.
mother! stars Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem as a couple living in a remote home whose relationship is tested when uninvited guests show up. I don’t know more than that. I don’t want to know more than that. Aronofsky’s films are best when you come to them without preconceived notions. It also stars Ed Harris, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Brian Gleeson which is more than enough for me to make it my Pick of the Week.
Also out this week that looks interesting:
The Whales of August: Bette Davis, Lillian Gish, and Vincent Price star in this drama about two sisters at the tail end of life passing a summer at a seaside cottage. I'll have a full review up soon.
Suspiria: Synapse Films is releasing a brand new 4K restoration of this Giallo classic. Looks amazing.
Leatherface: Stephen Dorff stars in this origin story to the Texas Chainsaw Massacre.
Stronger: Jake Gyllenhall and Tatiana Maslany star in this drama about a a survivor of the Boston Marathon bombing who helps the police catch the killers but must also learn to heal himself. Sounds like a bad TV movie but the reviews have been quite good.
Victoria & Abdul: Judi Dench pulls another outstanding performance in this based-on-a-true-story tale of Queen Victoria’s late in life friendship with a Muslim Indian who becomes her confidant. You can read my full review here.
The Lego Ninjago Movie: I’m a big fan of The Lego Movie and the Batman Lego Movie was a lot of fun, which means I’ll eventually watch this one even though I know nothing about the whole Ninjago franchise and this one definitely seems like a b-version of those other films. It stars Dave Franco, Michael Pena, and Olivia Munn.
Valdez is Coming: Burt Lancaster stars in this Elmore Leonard adaptation from 1971.
Dunkirk: Christopher Nolan’s time-shifting, beautifully depicted war drama about the evacuation of Dunkirk during World War II is being released in multiple editions.