Your time is short. We know this. So in order to expedite your buying and Netflix decision making, we provide you with a list of the cool and not-so-cool titles coming out for movies, television and everything in-between. So put your feet up, grab some popcorn and check out this week’s selections.
PIRANHA 3DD – I will be honest (as I am usually in this column, maybe too much for some of you), I totally loved the first PIRANHA. Now, it wasn’t because I got to interview the entire cast and get this-close to Kelly Brook. OK, I lied after saying I was going to be honest. That is definitely one of the reasons. But what was not to love about the first installment – boobs, babes, blood and tons of nifty gore. Right up the alley of any full-blooded American male. Sure the plot was ludicrous and lacked serious cohesion, that’s not what brought us to the party, am I right? Boobs. Babes. Blood. Gore.
PIRANHA 3DD is more of the same but unfortunately lacks some of the four key reasons to leave your brain at the door and just enjoy it. There’s boobs. There’s babes. There’s blood. However, the gore factor is surprisingly toned down. This is especially shocking given those behind the film – director John Gulager (PROJECT GREENLIGHT’s winner who went on to the fan-favorite gorefest FEAST) and writers Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton (also of PROJECT GREENLIGHT and also of FEAST but maybe more importantly of the SAW franchise). So what happened? Budget concerns gotta be there but after Alex Aja pretty much re-wrote the book on how to make a fun movie that’s over-the-top gory with scores of nudity in the original PIRANHA, you’d think these guys would be able to at least match it. It is probably the most shocking turn of events in the film about a water park that gets attacked by the same creatures that were released in the first film. Still, when you gotta watch a no-brainer and watch hot chicks and a bunch of washed up actors perform, this is a go-to.
SAFE – Jason Statham has pretty much mastered the whole loner action movie role where he plays some bad ass dude that gets thrown into a situation he didn’t want and has to kill a whole slew of bad guys in order to survive. He’s also mastered the whole one word action movie title thing: BLITZ, CRANK, TRANSPORTER and now SAFE. All of these films are incredibly similar. They all feature Statham kicking ass, killing random dudes and fighting some nasty bad head honcho. SAFE is about Statham getting framed for killing his girlfriend (or wife we really don’t know) by the Russian mob because he refused to take a dive in a mixed martial arts bout. On the run, he befriends a Chinese girl that is wanted by the same mafia for her incredible memory that will lead to a big payout. Of course, killings and kickassery ensue. It isn’t bad, it’s quality Statham.
RE-ANIMATOR – “I must say, Dr. Hill, I’m VERY disappointed in you.” God, I love this movie. I’m not alone. I know this. But holy crap is it still one of the best horror-comedies on the face of the Earth. RE-ANIMATOR set the bar for anything to come after it in terms of poking fun at itself and just for making a general good time with a whole bunch of headless corpses and dead bodies roaming around. Hell, it still sets the bar. This is the first time that classic has been released onto Blu-ray remastered from the latest technology and featuring high resolution DTS-HD audio. Of course the story is well known, an up-and-coming scientist Herbert West (Jeffrey Combs) finds a way to re-animate the dead. The only problem is that the dead don’t like coming back to life and are thirsty for revenge. Hilarity ensues. Complete with one of the greatest visual double entendres in all of cinema. And of the my all-time favorite films. It looks amazing and I’m happy to have it in high def for the first time.
MOTHER’S DAY – Never forget mama. Recently, this is not the remake that came out a few months ago but the original Troma version of the film in all its sleazy glory offered up for the first time on Blu-ray. As such, it will maybe be the first time the film has been offered in widescreen and (obviously) in high def. Three chicks that are gathering in the woods for their yearly reunion get a brutal unwanted visit from a psycho mom and her equally psycho sons. Considered a bit controversial at the time for its treatment of women (including a rape scene) but grew to become a cult classic. It is definitely a Joe Bob Briggs variety that has loads of bad acting, bad special effects and gratuitous nudity.
FRINGE: THE COMPLETE FOURTH SEASON – FRINGE continues to re-invent itself each season. From a show that began with a weekly experiment-gone-wrong-of-the-week with a bit of mythology about an alternate universe and a coming war between this world and another. It morphed into a show about all-out war between the universes, to a show about the search to find yourself in a world that doesn’t remember you. It will once again morph into a show about the future and fighting a future race that has come back through time to rule the world in the fifth season. While I have to admit I’m not sure about the whole change in direction that is wildly radical – given the first four season have been about the alternate universe with the mystery of the Observers wrapped inside – I will be watching to see where the series goes in the final season. This collects all 22 episodes from the fourth season along with some pretty good special features fans will enjoy. So before the new season hits, see what you missed or re-watch the episodes in anticipation.
GREY’S ANATOMY: THE COMPLETE EIGHTH SEASON – Another season of the antics going on at Seattle Grace Mercy West Hospital is upon us in the fall and here’s your best chance to catch up on what you missed during the shows eighth season. Obviously, those that enjoy the nighttime drama are the ones that will be most interested in this and what you get in the eighth season is pretty much more of the same of what you have come to know from the show – lots of stuff going on in the operating room and lots of stuff going on outside the hospital in terms of relationships that seem to just cycle from cast member to cast member. Fans will probably particularly enjoy the added featurette “A Journey Home with Kevin McKidd” where the Scot returns to his homeland showing off the local attractions. There are also a host of other stuff on the extras.
NINJA TURTLES: THE NEXT MUTATION, VOLUME 1 – Everyone heard the stories about a new live action TMNT going into production and that there, erm, aliens. Well before all that bit of nastiness comes around, here’s a good chance to relive your childhood with the 90s title THE NEXT MUTATION collecting 13 episodes of the show in a 2-disc set. Unlike the cartoon series, this was live action series that had the ninja turtles battling new foes and finding new allies. It’s a cheap set so might be good just to show to your kids that have no idea what you are talking about when complain about what Michael Bay is going to do.
THE OFFICE: SEASON EIGHT – Obviously, something is missing. The absent Steve Carell just can’t be denied despite THE OFFICE continuing to be funny, it just isn’t the same. Carell just brought that mix of innocence and stupidity to levels that can’t be duplicated despite the rest of the cast remaining intact. It is safe to say that Season 8 of the series is by far the worst since it lost Carell and got James Spader as the replacement. Spader is OK, but like I said it just isn’t the same show as even some of the old characters (especially Jim and Pam) are getting annoying. Still, it is coming back for a Season 9 so everyone can continue to complain about how this series should have ended a while ago.
PARKS AND RECREATION: SEASON FOUR – Considered to be one of the most under-appreciated comedies on television today, PARKS AND REC is lucky to be coming back considering the ratings are merely so-so. But the fans that do watch, love it and with good reason, it is a hilarious show with some great characters and truly laugh-out-loud moments. Here’s a good chance to catch up on what you missed before the fifth season comes along or relive the moments you enjoyed from Season 4.
HUNG: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON – It is very interesting to see Thomas Jane in the role of a male escort especially after watching the short film reviving his version of THE PUNISHER and his great performance in THE MIST. Still, the HBO comedy has some pretty amusing moments and given it is on the pay cable network is able to show a bit more than what would normally be given away on a half-hour show on broadcast channels. With the fourth season of the show coming up, here’s a good chance to catch up on what you missed.
BORED TO DEATH: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON – Another HBO comedy coming out this week and pretty much anything with Zach Galifianakis is a winner in my book but the show about an unlicensed private detective (Jason Schwartzman) finding risky jobs to make ends meet along with his bumbling partners in Galifianakis and Ted Danson is pretty outrageously funny at times.
2 BROKE GIRLS: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON – First things first, Kat Dennings is pretty damn hot and carries two of the greatest talents with her in whatever she does. That said, 2 BROKE GIRLS isn’t too bad either. The plot isn’t really original. Dennings is Max, a working glass girl who has always been working pay check to pay check in a diner. They hire Caroline who has been rich and lived a privileged life up until this point and takes the job under no choice now that she’s broke. Of course, you can see where this odd couple is going. The second season is coming this fall so here’s your chance to catch up.
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Article: PIRANHA 3DD Highlights this week in Blu-ray and DVD Releases