Recently in Pick of the Week

Klute is the Pick of the Week

A gritty '70s masterwork leads a week of interesting releases.
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The 1970s was a hugely groundbreaking decade for film. During this decade, Cinema reflected on the aftermath of Vietnam, the Watergate scandal, women's rights, and the uncertainty of more political unrest. Director Alan J. Pakula reflected this with his unofficial 'paranoid trilogy', which included 1974's The Parallax View and 1976's All The President's Men. However, his 1971 neo-noir thriller, Klute, started it all. It's a film about menace, uncertainty, but also a woman's place in the world. That woman is Bree Daniels (Jane Fonda), a self-liberated call girl who's given one trick too many, and finds herself on the wrong

The BRD Trilogy is the Pick of the Week

Fassbinder's classic trilogy stands out during a week of notable releases.
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Legendary director Rainer Werner Fassbinder was one of the most uncompromising observers of human nature that cinema had ever known. He was also a rebel with a devil-may-care attitude, but not unsympathetically towards his characters; characters who were outsiders rejected by society and forced to live their lives the only way they knew how. The three films available in the new Blu-ray upgrade for his famous BRD Trilogy: The Marriage of Maria Braun (1979), Veronkia Voss (1982), and Lola (1981), showcase strong women who sacrifice their beauty for the things they want in postwar Germany, but not for the most

Leon Morin, Priest is the Pick of the Week

Legendary director Jean-Pierre Melville's 1961 non-gangster classic leads a rather slow week of releases.
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When talking about the great Jean-Pierre Melville, you're automatically drawn to his gangster oeurve, which he definitely excelled in. This is apparent because of iconic films such as Le Samourai, Le Cercle Rouge, and Le Deuxieme Souffle, among others. However, he was a filmmaker of many talents, reveling in dramas as well, such as Army Of Shadows, Le Silence De La Mer, and his spirtual 1961 effort Leon Morin, Priest, which is my Pick of the Week. It stars film legend Jean-Paul Belmondo as Leon Morin, a man of the cloth who becomes the object of desire of all the

Hedwig and the Angry Inch is the Pick of the Week

John Cameron Mitchell's 2001 cult classic rounds out a pretty great week of new releases.
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Being that this is still Pride month, I think John Cameron Mitchell's Hedwig and the Angry Inch (2001) makes sense as my Pick of the Week. Although I have only seen the first half of the film, I know that it definitely compares to Rocky Horror as the new Midnight Movie, but with more emotional and oddly realistic poignancy. It also captures the spirit of rock and roll and how it connects within the soul of people who really desire their own voice. In terms of today's unholy and misguided transphobia, I think the film stomps the usual stereotypes to

Us is the Pick of the Week

Jordan Peele's creepy second work headlines a new, interesting release week.
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Director Jordan Peele brings us a new cinematic nightmare with his inventive, sophomore effort, Us, which can be described as a home-invasion thriller like no other. However, Peele has some definite tricks up his sleeve. Although he only has two films under his belt (so far), this and his 2017 smash hit, Get Out, he already has garnered the reputation as a new master of horror. His brand of scaring viewers is the level of social horror, where the shocks are metaphors for the real problems that exist the world we live in. With Us, he tackles the hidden terrors

Criterion's Swing Time is the Pick of the Week

An Astaire and Rogers classic headlines a somewhat pivotal week of new releases.
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When it comes to classic cinema, I think that the Astaire and Rogers films have to be mentioned somewhere. While they're short on plot, which means that Astaire and Rogers typically play their usual boy-meets-girl, girl-detests-boy, boy-and-girl eventually fall in love schtick. But when it comes to the dancing and musical numbers, they arugbly cannot be beat as perhaps the greatest duo in Hollywood history. And when you have them directed by one of the most celebrated American directors of all-time, Mr. George Stevens, you have a recipe for movie magic. Hence the point, with the new release of 1936's
After an invaluable contribution of nearly eight years running this weekly column, Senior Writer Mat Brewster is stepping away and will be greatly missed. Rather than leaving readers around the world in the dark about what new titles are available to purchase, we'll do our best to fill the void created by his absence. Perusing the list of new titles on sale this week, there was little doubt as a member of Generation X that I would be picking The New Scooby-Doo Movies: The (Almost) Complete Collection from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. As much as it was fun watching the

Her Smell is the Pick of the Week

The reviews have been pretty mixed but everybody praises Moss's performance and I'm pretty excited to finally see it.
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I have become such a fan of Elisabeth Moss. I first noticed her as the Chelsea Clinton-esque President’s daughter on The West Wing. She had a small recurring role on it, but she really made an impression. Then, of course, she was on Mad Men, which I loved and loved her in. She was great in Top of the Lake and intense on The Handmaid’s Tale and now I want to see her in everything. Looking over her filmography, I see she’s been in lots and lots of things so I’ve got some catching up to do. It is always

How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World is the Pick of the Week

It is an interesting batch of new releases coming out this week.
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I have taken several overseas flights. They are always long. They are always exhausting. The only thing that makes them bearable is being able to watch movies. The best airlines have little TVs in front of every seat, each programmed with a large selection of movies and TV shows that you can control. The worst have a few select screens that pop down at random intervals throughout the plane and only play the same films. Unless you are seated in the right spot, it is difficult to see what is happening on those screens and anytime someone gets up to

Apollo 11 is the Pick of the Week

Here's what looks interesting in this week's Blu-ray releases.
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I am not a scientist. The math was always too difficult for me. I intentionally steered away from the sciences in college for that very reason. However, I am constantly amazed at what science is able to do and to understand. This is no more true than in space travel. The vastness of the universe boggles the mind. That we have managed to send crafts and humans into space is nothing short of awesome. That we landed men on the moon with less technology that what I carry around in my pocket blows me away. Yet we did. There are

Dragged Across Concrete Is the Pick of the Week

Lots of interesting stuff coming out this week, I've got your info.
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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

Noir Archive - Volume 1: 1944-1954 is the Pick of the Week

A full week of classic releases and a few new ones.
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Last November (or Noirvember, as I like to call it), I set out to watch as many film noirs as I could. I watched a pretty broad selection of classics, not-so classics, and neo-noirs. I’ve always liked the genre, but watching so many in such a short period of time really made me a fan. Since then, I’ve continued to watch the genre as often as I can (Amazon Prime has a surprisingly good selection of them). Throughout the 1940s, Columbia Studios made a whole bunch of them. Most of them don’t fall into the category of classic. In fact,

Glass is the Pick of the Week

Here's all that's interesting coming out this week in the world of Blu-ray.
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With the huge success of The Sixth Sense, director M. Night Shyamalan was able to make just about any film he wanted. He followed it with a series of similarly themed films full of dark emotion, supernatural mysteries, and a twist ending. He quickly went from critical darling to critical punching bag. Apparently, his movies still make money because he’s still making them, but I tuned out after The Happening. In truth, I turned out earlier than that, but that was the last film of his I actually watched. Of the films I have seen, Unbreakable is my favorite. It

On the Basis of Sex is the Pick of the Week

A future Supreme Court Justice, a Sherlock Holmes parody, erotic adventures, tiny dolls, and more come out this week.
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The Supreme Court has been in the news a lot lately. Obviously, they make a lot of major decisions that affect everyday life in America and so they are watched very carefully. Donald Trump has now appointed two justices, which will have an enormous effect on the Court for decades to come. Depending on which side of the aisle you sit, this is either a great time to be an American or the signaling of end times. I hate talking politics online but I will say his choices did not meet my approval. But as always, there is a light

The Mule (2018) is the Pick of the Week

I might be late in writing about it, but there is still some good stuff coming out this week.
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I turned 43 last week. Apparently, I not only got a year older but I completely lost my memory too. I woke up this morning thinking everything was fine. I thought about the stack of Blu-ray movies I received in the mail yesterday and about the dates they needed to be reviewed. For a moment, I thought one of them was coming out this week and I panicked. Then I thought about my weekly article on new Blu-ray releases. Then I tried to think about what came out this week. Then I remembered I didn’t know what came out this

Aquaman is the Pick of the Week

All that's fit to buy from this week's new releases.
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Everybody knows that Marvel has completely destroyed DC when it comes to feature films. At this point, it really is Marvel’s world (or cinematic universe, if you will) and we’re just living in it (or at least going to the movies to watch it.). DC scored a big hit with Wonder Woman and while their other films have made lots of money, just about everybody hates them. Or at least feel they could be a thousand times better. I liked Man of Steel and Batman v. Superman a lot better than most but that was because I saw both films

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse Is the Pick of the Week

Superheroes, Doctor Who, film noir, and black-gloved killers, this week has it all.
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Since Sam Raimi introduced Spider-Man into the summer blockbuster tradition 16 years ago, there have been no fewer than seven films featuring the webslinger. Raimi’s first two entries into the Spidey Cinematic Universe were well received both critically and at the box office. His third entry, made in 2007, spun off the rails and Spidey spent the next five years cooling his heels in the comics pages. Then there were two films starring Andrew Garfield before Marvel introduced the character to the MCU in 2016 with Captain America: Civil War, and finally he got his own standalone film, Spider-Man: Homecoming

Green Book is the Pick of the Week

It's a big week for Blu-ray releases and we've got your details.
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I care nothing for the Oscars in any meaningful way, but I do love to watch the ceremony and listen to the chatter that comes from the various entertainment writers I follow. There is always at least one long-shot movie that my critic friends champion and another front-runner that they hate. This year there were two hated films - Bohemian Rhapsody and Green Book. It was the latter that received the most scorn. Not so much because it is a bad movie as most critics seem to agree it is a decent film, but because of its treatment of race

The Favourite Is the Pick of the Week

Here's all the interesting Blu-rays coming out this week.
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While I do love the cinema, I very rarely get to go to an actual theater. As a family, we often catch the big blockbusters, and now and again, the wife and I will see something more adult in nature with the young daughter at her grandparents. But even that winds up being something more mainstream as we don’t often have the time to run anywhere but to the local cinema, which doesn’t run anything that isn’t going to make hundreds of millions of dollars. So it was a real treat a few weeks back to get to go to

Mary, Queen of Scots is the Pick of the Week

Here's all that looks interesting in this week's new Blu-ray releases.
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While watching The Oscars Sunday night, I was often rooting for The Favourite, Yorgos Lanthimos period drama about the Queen of England and her two consorts fighting for power. Yet I kept being reminded of another period drama about royal fights of power, a film I’d forgotten even existed, - Mary, Queen of Scots. That film was nominated for a few awards, didn’t win any, but the clips sure looked interesting. It stars Saoirse Ronan as the titular queen of Scotland and Margot Robbie as Queen Elizabeth. The two are locked in a battle of wits over who will reign

Doctor Who: Resolution is the Pick of the Week

Remakes, Nazis, Criterions, and Doctor Who all look interesting in this week's new Blu-ray releases.
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It is a new era for Doctor Who. There is a new actress playing the Doctor (there is an actress playing Doctor Who!). She's got an all-new set of companions and Chris Chibnall just took over the reigns as the showrunner. As if that wasn't enough changes this past year, they moved the long-running tradition of Christmas specials to New Year's. I was pretty bummed by that idea because we typically spend Christmas with my wife's family and it's become something of a tradition for us to watch Doctor Who after a lovely Christmas Day full of good food and

Bohemian Rhapsody is the Pick of the Week

It's another great week to be a Blu-ray collector, and I've got all the new releases worth talking about.
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I don’t consider myself a huge Queen fan, but I dig a lot of their songs. They could write a big stadium anthem like few others. There is no denying that Freddie Mercury was incredibly charismatic and one intensely talented front man. Just watch that performance of them at Wembley Stadium and you'll see what I'm talking about. Director Bryan Singer’s biopic of the band naturally focuses on Mercury and it's garnered quite a bit of praise including Oscar noms for Best Picture and Best Actor for Rami Malek. I wish I’d seen it in the theaters as no doubt

The Sisters Brothers is the Pick of the Week

It's another big week of new releases. I have all your info.
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As someone who has to regularly come up with article titles, I know names can be hard. Finding something eye catching, easy to scan that sums up your entire work of art can be a maddening process. Good titles are eternally memorable. They can lead them directly to you work. Bad ones can turn people off, keep them from watching your movie. The Sisters Brothers is a terrible freaking title. It seems clever because its about some brothers whose last name is Sisters, but it doesn’t work in any other way, and those unfamiliar with the film (which includes everyone

Suspiria (2018) is the Pick of the Week

Here's all the Blu-ray releases that look interesting this week.
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It takes a certain audacity to remake Suspiria, Dario Argento’s 1977 supernatural horror film. The original is a vibrant, neon, phantasmagoria of sight and sound, and blood. It is a film unto itself. One that only Argento could make. How anyone could look at that film and think it needed to be remade is beyond me. And yet here we are. Luca Guadagino, a director best known for Call Me By Your Name, a lush, quiet little film about a gay love affair between a student and an older man, is apparently that audacious. When I first heard it was

First Man is the Pick of the Week

The Criterion Collection, Humphrey Bogart, Neil Armstrong, and more are coming to a Blu-ray near you.
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Last night, the wife, the daughter, and I sat in our car in the freezing cold at 11:30 at night looking at the Super Blood Wolf Moon. It was awesome. We are big fans of space and astronomy around here. My daughter thought it was the coolest thing ever. I kind of did, too. I am forever blown away by the fact that we’ve sent robots and real, live human beings into space and lived to tell the tale. One such tale is First Man, Damien Chazelle’s movie about Neil Armstrong, the first man to have set foot on the

The Old Man & the Gun is The Pick of The Week

Who knew January was such a great time for new releases?
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Robert Redford is one of the all-time classic movie stars. He has the looks, the charm, and the acting chops. He starred in lots of great movies over his long career including Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, All the President’s Men, Out of Africa, and The Horse Whisperer. With The Old Man & the Gun, he has declared he is retiring from film acting. At 82 years of age and a whole lot of films to his credit as actor, director, and producer, I think he’s earned it. The Old Man & the Gun is based on the true

Castle Rock: The Complete First Season Is the Pick of the Week

Hope you have some Christmas money left because this week brings some interesting new releases.
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Over the last year or so, I’ve become quite the Stephen King fan. I’d read some of his work before then and seen many of the cinematic adaptations based upon his words, but I’d never really engulfed myself into his stories. It started with the audio book of his recent novel Mr. Mercedes and blossomed from there. I’m currently in the middle of IT which, if my pace continues, I’ll finish sometime in 2021. It's a really big book, and I’m a slow reader. But I dig it. I don’t know it that behemoth will cure me of my King

Bad Times at the El Royale is the Pick of the Week

The new year starts with some new titles.
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Those of you who pay attention to these things might be wondering what happened to this article over the last two weeks. Never fear, faithful reader. I have answers. Two weeks ago, I was at the beginning of a week-long bout with a virus that kept me bed-bound and mostly comatose. This last week, I was on the mend but there really was nothing worth talking about. Last Tuesday, otherwise known as New Release Day was also known as Christmas. The people who make decisions, such as what new Blu-rays to release and when had spent the previous four weeks

De Niro & De Palma: The Early Years From Arrow is The Pick of the Week

Here's a few new releases to add to your Christmas stocking.
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Over the years, I’ve become a pretty big Brian De Palma fan. It has been a slow process. I first came to him through the Oscar-winning, Al Capone-drama The Untouchables in 1987, then it was likely another decade before I caught him again in Mission:Impossible. I’d then catch a film here, a film there. Then the last couple of years, I’ve really started to pay attention. I’ve caught up on a lot of his older films - The Fury, Blow Out, Dressed to Kill - and while his stories are often a gloriously mess, I really dig his visual style.

Mission:Impossible - Fallout is the Pick of the Week

This pick of the week will self destruct in seven days.
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I have pretty much completely given up on action movies over the last decade or so. I long ago grew tired of more car chases, more explosions, more bigger and bigger guns. I still do watch superhero movies which I suppose are kind of like action flicks, but with capes, but whatever. Straight up action is pretty much gone from my movie queues. The exceptions being the Bond films (which I can call spy films and still get away with my "no action movies" mantra) and the Mission:Impossible films (also technically spy films, but who are we trying to kid?).

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