By Harley Lond - 06/13/22 at 11:56 PM CT
FROM THE BIG SCREEN
Ambulance (2022) Decorated veteran Will Sharp (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), desperate for money to cover his wife's medical bills, asks for help from the one person he knows he shouldn't - his adoptive brother Danny (Jake Gyllenhaal). A charismatic career criminal, Danny instead offers him a score: the biggest bank heist in Los Angeles history: $32 million. With his wife's survival on the line, Will can't say no. But when their getaway goes spectacularly wrong, the desperate brothers hijack an ambulance with a wounded cop clinging to life and ace EMT Cam Thompson (Eiza González) onboard. In a high-speed pursuit that never stops, Will and Danny must evade a massive, city-wide law enforcement response, keep their hostages alive, and somehow try not to kill each other, all while executing the most insane escape L.A. has ever seen. Vitals: Director: Michael Bay. Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Eiza González. 2021, CC, MPAA rating: R, 136 min., Action Thriller, North American box office gross: $22.054 million, worldwide $51.054 million, Universal. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray + Digital Code, 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray Combo + Digital Code, VOD, Digital. Extras: "Bayhem" behind-the-scenes featurette; "Pedal to the Metal" car chase craft featurette; "Aerial Assault" featurette; "A Tribute to First Responders." Blu-ray adds: "Finding Ambulance" cast and crew interviews; "Chase Capital of the World" featurette. Read more here.
Morbius (2021) IT'S MORBIN' TIME! One of the most compelling and conflicted characters in the Marvel Universe comes to the big screen as Jared Leto transforms into the enigmatic antihero Michael Morbius. Dangerously ill with a rare blood disorder and determined to save others suffering his same fate, Dr. Morbius attempts a desperate gamble. While at first it seems to be a radical success, a darkness inside him is unleashed. Will good override evil – or will Morbius succumb to his mysterious new urges brought on by a form of vampirism? Vitals: Director: Daniel Espinosa. Stars: Jared Leto, Matt Smith, Adria Arjona, Jared Harris, Al Madrigal, Tyrese Gibson. 2022, CC, MPAA rating: PG-13, 104 min., Action Adventure, North American box office gross: $71.470 million, worldwide $161.470 million, Sony. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo + Digital Code, 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray Combo + Digital Code, VOD, Digital. Extras: "Defining the Antihero" featurette, "The Good, Bad & Ugly - Supporting Cast Doing the Stunt Work" featurette. Blu-ray adds: Additional featurettes: "From Human to Vampire - Visual Effects," "Lights, Camera, Action," "Living Vampire from Comics to Screen"; outtakes and bloopers; Nocturnal Easter Eggs. Read more here.
Father Stu (2022) Based on a true story, this is an unflinchingly honest, funny and uplifting story about finding purpose in a most unexpected place. After surviving a terrible motorcycle accident, Stuart Long (Mark Wahlberg) wonders if he can use his second chance to help others find their way – and leads this former amateur boxer to the surprising realization that he is meant to be a priest. Despite a devastating health crisis and the skepticism of church officials and his estranged parents (Mel Gibson and Jacki Weaver), Stu pursues his vocation with courage and compassion, inspiring not only those closest to him, but countless others along the way. Vitals: Director: Rosalind Ross. Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Mel Gibson, Jacki Weaver. 2021, CC, MPAA rating: R, 125 min., Drama, North American box office gross: $19.618 million, worldwide $19,619 million, Sony. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray + Digital Code, VOD, Digital. Extras: "You Don’t Know Stu: More About Father Stuart Long," deleted scenes. Read more here.
THIS WEEK'S BEST BETS
In her luminous feature debut, "Farewell Amor" (2020), filmmaker Ekwa Msangi chronicles a broken family’s journey to wholeness with empathy and insight. Seventeen years after his family was separated by the civil war in Angola, a New York taxi driver (Ntare Guma Mbaho Mwine) is reunited with his now devoutly religious wife (Zainab Jah) and teenage daughter (Jayme Lawson) when they are finally able to follow him to America. But after living thousands of miles apart for so long, the three find they must discover one another’s strengths, forgive one another’s weaknesses, and bridge cultural and generational divides in order to build a life together. Told in three perspective-shifting chapters that honor the multitude of struggles and emotions that make up the immigrant experience, "Farewell Amor" is a bittersweet, compassionate evocation of how it feels when your heart and your home are in different places. On DVD, Blu-ray, with new 2K master, approved by director Ekwa Msangi, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray. From The Criterion Collection. Read more here.
BUZZIN' THE 'B'S:
After receiving a mysterious letter that her mother's grave site has been vandalized, Marie quickly returns to the isolated offshore island where her late mother is buried in "Offseason" (2021), starring Jocelin Donahue, Joe Swanberg, Richard Brake, Melora Walters and Jeremy Gardner. When she arrives, she discovers that the island is closing for the offseason with the bridges raised until Spring, leaving her stranded. One strange interaction with the local townspeople after another, Marie soon realizes that something is not quite right in this small town, and she must unveil the mystery behind her mother’s troubled past in order to make it out alive. On DVD, Blu-ray, from RLJE Films ... In "Gold" (2022), starring Zac Efron, Anthony Hayes and Susie Porter, in the not too distant future, two drifters (Efron, Hayes) traveling through the desert stumble across the biggest gold nugget ever found and the dream of immense wealth and greed takes hold. They hatch a plan to excavate their bounty with one man leaving to secure the necessary tools. The other man remains and must endure harsh desert elements, ravenous wild dogs, and mysterious intruders, while battling the sinking suspicion that he has been abandoned to his own fate. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Screen Media Films ... In "Hostile Territory" (2021), starring Brian Presley, Matt McCoy, Brea Bee, Brad Leland, Lew Temple, Craig Tate and Desmond Richards, former P.O.W. Jack Calgrove moves Heaven and Earth to be reunited with his children following the Civil War. After returning home, Jack finds out his wife has died and his children, presumed orphans, are heading deep into the West aboard a train crossing old enemy lines. Calgrove and another former soldier are joined by a troop of Native American sharpshooters and a freed slave, as they race to intercept the orphan train before all hope is lost. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Well Go USA ... "Infinite Storm" (2022), starring Naomi Watts, Denis O'Hare, Billy Howle, Eliot Sumner and Parker Sawyers, is based on the thrilling true survival story. As an experienced climber (Naomi Watts) ascends New Hampshire’s Mt. Washington, a huge blizzard approaches, forcing her to turn back before reaching the summit. On her way down she encounters a lone, stranded man, and takes it upon herself to get them both down the mountain before they succumb to the storm and nightfall. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Bleecker Street ... In the thriller "Last Passenger" (2012), starring Dougray Scott and Kara Tointon, Dr. Lewis Shaler (Scott) boards a night train with his young son, Max. As he chats with a friendly fellow passenger, Sarah (Tointon), he idly wonders why the train isn’t following its normal route. When the train hurtles past their stops, Shaler and the other passengers realize something is seriously wrong. Communications are down and the emergency brakes don’t work. As the train rockets dangerously down the tracks and crashes through whatever is put in its path, Shaler and the rest of the passengers take matters into their own hands. But they’re no match for this multi-ton monster careening down a path to utter destruction. In a Blu-ray debut from Cohen Media Group ... In "Ninja Badass" (2020) , starring Ryan Harrison, Darrell Francis and Mitch Schlagel, the Ninja VIP Super Club is doing a slow drag across the American Midwest, culminating in female sacrifice. When they kidnap a super hot babe that a local scumbag, Rex, has his eyes on – it's up to him to become a ninja and steal her back. From exploding cows to bazooka cops, hillbilly senseis, even more super hot babes, deadly flying feet, badass ball rippers and an over-the-top ninja villain in cowboy boots with an appetite for everything that's soft and fuzzy - along with the original song "I'm a Ninja Now" from Vince Johnson, the singer-songwriter behind Joe Exotic's viral songs such as "I Saw a Tiger" - this outrageous twist on '80s B-ninja flicks is a singular, out-of-body experience moviegoers won't soon forget. On Blu-ray, from Bayview Entertainment ... "The Nanny's Night" (2022 - Spain), starring Diana Penalver, Juan Carlos Vellido, David Santana, Javier Bodalo and Antonio Mayans, is the story of the coolest babysitter in town, who is revealed to be a member of a malevolent satanic sect who needs to sacrifice a virgin - but whose plans go amiss. From Devilworks. Read more here ... "Fatherhood" (2021), starring Kevin Hart, Alfre Woodard, Lil Rel Howery, DeWanda Wise, Anthony Carrigan and Paul Reiser, is a heartwarming true story about a widowed dad who copes with doubts, fears, heartache and dirty diapers as he sets out to raise his daughter on his own. Based on Matt Logelin's 2011 best-selling memoir, "Two Kisses for Maddy: A Memoir of Loss and Love." On DVD, Blu-ray, from Sony. Read more here.
In "Caged Birds" (2020 -- Switzerland), Barbara “Babs” Hug is a young radical lawyer fighting Switzerland’s antiquated prison system in the 1980s. One day, she’s approached by the country’s most wanted criminal, Walter Stürm (Basman), in a public square. Intelligent and sensitive, “Walti” -- nicknamed “The Jailbreak King” - isn’t your average criminal, as he’s recently escaped from prison for the seventh time. He’s also a Robin Hood-like figure and Swiss counter-cultural icon, taunting the establishment with outrageous thefts and media savvy. Babs quickly sees an opportunity to use his popularity to reform the penal system, and they form an unlikely alliance. That plan, however, goes awry when the unpredictable Stürm uses his newfound freedom to commit another crime, and soon finds the authorities closing in. From Corinth Films ... In "Fear" (2020 - Bulgaria), Svetla, a strong-willed widow, lives alone in a small Bulgarian village close to the Turkish border. She has recently lost her job as a teacher due to the lack of families with young children. One day, while hunting in a forest, she encounters an African refugee, Bamba, who is trying to reach Germany; reluctantly, she offers him hospitality, but day after day, a bond develops as Bamba learns the language and takes part in her daily life. Svetla will make life-changing choices that go against her traditional community, creating a revolt among the villagers. Absurd, comic and tragic situations ensue as she breaks barriers of loneliness, close mindedness and fear of the outsider. Bulgaria's official submission to the 2022 Academy Awards. From Film Movement ... The sophomore feature from Tsai Ming-liang ("Rebels of the Neon God"; "Goodbye, Dragon Inn") finds the acclaimed master of Taiwan's Second New Wave demonstrating a confident new cinematic voice. "Vive L'amour" (1994 - China) follows three characters unknowingly sharing a supposedly empty Taipei apartment. The beautiful realtor May Lin brings her lover Ah-jung to a vacant unit she has on the market, unaware that it is secretly being occupied by the suicidal funeral salesman Hsiao-kang. The three cross paths in a series of precisely staged, tragicomic erotic encounters, but despite their physical proximity, they find themselves no closer to a personal connection. Featuring an intoxicating mix of Antonioni-esque longing and surprising deadpan humor, the film catapulted Tsai to the top of the international filmmaking world and earned him the prestigious Golden Lion at the 1994 Venice International Film Festival. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Film Movement ... In the run-down "Hotel Fear" (1976 - Italy), by the shores of a large lake in Italy towards the end of World War Two, a strange assortment of guests seem to be either suffering from mental illness, involved in scams of one sort or another, or hiding from something in their past. Rosa, a teenage girl, works with her mother, Marta, trying to keep the hotel functioning. Due to the war and the frequent bombing raids, the hotel is on its last legs - even finding food for the guests is a major problem. Rosa writes letters to send to her father, who is off fighting in the war. When Rosa’s mother dies unexpectedly, the girl finds herself at the mercy of the sexually rapacious and insane hotel guests. After a vicious rape, Rosa despairs and calls on her absent father to avenge her. And it seems her call is answered when the guests die violently at the hands of a masked, gloved killer. But who really is this mystery assassin - and is Rosa losing her grip on reality? Brand new 2k restoration from original negative. On Blu-ray from Mondo Macabro ... In "Strangler vs Strangler" (1984 - Yugoslavia), it's the mid-1980s and the city of Belgrade is aiming for metropolitan status which would put it on a level with New York, Paris and London. For a city to reach that category it has to attain a special level of crime. It needs a serial killer. Exhibitionists in cemeteries, peepers in parks, bank robbers, reckless drivers, rapists, murderers, all these Belgrade already has. For the city to be classified as a metropolis it needs the king of criminals: the strangler. Suddenly a series of murders takes place. A deranged flower seller is strangling women on the streets of Belgrade, their crime in his eyes being that they refused to buy his carnations. At last, the city has its own serial killer. Finally it can attain the status of metropolis. Brand new 2k restoration from original negative. On Blu-ray from Mondo Macabro ... In "Shadow of the Cat" (2022 - Argentina), Gato lives with his teenage daughter Emma and a small group of people, including Sombra (Danny Trejo), on an isolated farm without telephones or internet. But Emma, tempted by curiosity, runs away into town one day to attend a carnival and gets her hands on a mobile phone. After she uploads a video of herself to the internet, Emma is contacted by a mysterious woman named Celia who claims to be her long-lost mother. What follows is a mystical tale of family, identity and broken trust set amidst the turmoil of one girl’s question about her past. From Indican Pictures. Read more here.
FOR THE FAMILY:
"King Tweety" (2022) is a brand-new animated film featuring Looney Tunes beloved characters Tweety and Sylvester. Tweety’s large and in charge as he takes the throne in the Canary Islands. When the queen of an island paradise disappears, Tweety unexpectedly becomes next in line for the crown. His Little Highness’ entourage includes motorbike daredevil Granny and sly Sylvester, whose allegiance is tested when he uncovers a sinister plot to eliminate Tweety for good. Feathers and fur will fly in this feature-length adventure. From Warner.
In "Comedy Confession" (2022), three struggling comedians pursue their dreams despite being homeless. Their cars not only get them to auditions but are also a place to sleep. Tiffany Haddish overcame the odds and became a star, but fate was not as kind to fellow jokesters Doc Jones and Steve Lolli. This honest and touching documentary is told in their own words revealing the passions, dedication and hardships that drive them. From Omnibus Entertainment ... The Documentary "Scarf Face" (2021) explores the world of competitive eating and the untold story behind the epic rivalry between America's Joey Chestnut and Japan's Takeru Kobayashi. Organized for decades by George Shea's Major League Eating corporation, the Nathan's hot dog eating contest at Coney Island has become the preeminent event for eaters worldwide - the start of their fiscal eating year - but not without its share of disturbing controversy and perilous dangers to the human body. The film follows various eaters at different career-levels over the course of six years - including Miki Sudo, Molly Schuyler, and Juan Morebite - as they discuss the sport, their lives, traditions, superstitions and health concerns, explaining how they ended up as contenders in this bizarre subculture. From Indiepix Films.
FROM TV TO DISC:
"Billions: Season Six" (2022) is a four-disc set with all 12 episodes. In this season, Michael Prince (Corey Stoll) takes over the Axe Capital throne and goes head to head with Chuck Rhoades (Paul Giamatti) in an ultimate showdown. Meanwhile, everyone must sharpen their weapons as Chuck is determined to develop a new strategy that is better than ever before. From CBS Home Entertainment/Paramount Home Entertainment ... "Curb Your Enthusiasm: The Complete Eleventh Season" (2021) is a two-disc set with all 10 episodes of the HBO series starring Larry David as an over-the-top version of himself, offering tongue-in-cheek depiction of the writer-producer-comedian’s fictionalized life. From Warner ... "Hacks: The Complete First Season" (2021) is a two-disc set with all 10 episodes. Multiple Emmy Award winner Jean Smart stars as a legendary Las Vegas comedian who is forced to hire an ambitious young writer (Hannah Einbinder). These two talented comedic voices from different generations form an unlikely bond in this new comedy from "Broad City" alums Paul W. Downs, Lucia Aniello and Jen Statsky and Emmy Award winning executive producer Michael Schur. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Universal ... "MacGyver: The Complete Series (Seasons 1-5)" (2016-21) is a 21-disc set that follows the adventures of twenty-something Angus “Mac” MacGyver (Lucas Till) in a reimagining of the classic TV series. As the daring leader of a clandestine organization within the U.S. government, MacGyver - armed only with his trusty pocketknife and an unending supply of resourcefulness - crisscrosses the globe to keep the world safe from harm. From Lionsgate.
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