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.
ESCAPE PLAN – Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger are no strangers to working together after a few stints in the EXPENDABLES films. However, there relationship gets taken to a whole new height in ESCAPE PLAN, a pretty decent action flick starring the aging action stars doing what they do best – kicking lots of ass and beating the bad guys. Stallone stars as Rey Breslin, the foremost authority in how to break out of a prison. He does this in order to help shore up prison’s defenses to prevent others from breaking out. When he gets a contract to try to break out of a private for-profit prison by the CIA things go wrong as he is really sent there to be a permanent resident. Luckily, he meets Schwarzenegger who has a lot of connections even in the most secure prison on the planet and the two come up with a plan to escape.
There isn’t anything new here in ESCAPE PLAN and in fact, much of what they did here was already done in another prison sci fi film called FORTRESS. But the Schwarzenegger/Stallone combination is actually really enjoyable as they obviously have chemistry. The only thing they never really broach is the fact that both men are well into their 60s and really shouldn’t be doing the things that they are doing in this movie. So the stars are the main draw here and the action is pretty good and I’m always down for a great breakout movie. Worth checking out on Blu-ray and if you buy it you get a digital copy to take along on your tablets and smartphones.
SCORNED – Annalynne McCord continues here batsh** crazy streak in SCORNED, which began in the beyond strange horror flick EXCISION. McCord is one of the actresses that has the ability to look drop dead gorgeous on one hand and on the other looks ugly from top to bottom depending on her actions. SCORNED follows McCord has a woman that finds out her boyfriend, Billy Zane, is cheating on her with her best friend, played by SPARTACUS’ Viva Bianca (and let me tell you, Viva Bianca indeed!). The entire film takes place during the course of one night as McCord’s character goes about extracting her revenge on upon the two in very painful, tortuous ways and we learn that she maybe, could have, probably been in a mental institution for an extended period of time during her youth and any little sudden trauma could set her off. And set her off it did, through hand grinders, ankle breaking, attempted drowning and mass drugging, she goes the full gambit of crazy. There isn’t a lot of new angles or plot here but McCord is pretty good again as the crazy one and Viva Bianca is just pretty damn amazing in every way. Worth checking out on Netflix when it ends up there.
NIGHT OF THE DEMONS: COLLECTOR’S EDITION – I had a few movies that I would always stop and watch on cable when I was young. NIGHT OF THE COMET and LIFEFORCE were two. NIGHT OF THE DEMONS was another. I always thought it was one of the more underrated horror films given how much gore and nudity is contained. Now it is back and better than ever thanks to Scream Factory (the horror wing of Shout! Factory) in this Collector’s Edition and the first time offered on Blu-ray. Given how many times I have seen this flick on crappy analog cable, it is almost a shock to see it in high definition. And it looks pretty incredible. Of course the plot follows a group of friends that go to a supposed haunted house on Halloween to party only to get savagely killed a possessed by a nasty spirit that has been residing there for a very long time. Now it is a race for the remaining guests alive to make it out of the house and over the wall before getting consumed forever. Good stuff and now even better.
CODE RED – Zombies. Zombies all day and night. Every week there is a zombie movie of some sort coming out on video and this week it at least is somewhat interesting premise. Instead of Nazi zombies we have Soviet zombies. Apparently during the battle of Stalingrad there was a cover-up to why so many people died in the battle. It was the result of some really gnarly gas that turned soldiers and people of the city into flesh-eating monsters. Now in modern times, the U.S. government is hot on the trail of a scientist that is tasked with discovering where the gas is today and if it might be a danger to humanity. An elite Special Forces dude goes into the city to track down the scientist and her daughter when all hell breaks loose and naturally zombies are unleashed. The Soviets issue a Code Red, which is everyone in the city is locked inside and no one gets out – killing zombie, human, whatever. Not the worst zombie flick that has come down the pick, not the best. If you enjoy low budget zombies, check it out.
ARGENTO’S DRACULA – I’m a huge Dario Argento fan. OK, let me back up. I’m a huge old school Argento fan. SUSPERIA and TENEBRE are two of my favorite horror films of all time. I also really enjoy PHENOMENA, DEEP RED and INFERNO. DEMONS and DEMONS 2 are freaking great and he only had a hand in the development of them. Obviously I’m not alone here. However, I am not a hater of THE STENDHAL SYNDROME or DO YOU LIKE HITCHCOCK or even MOTHER OF TEARS. But his best days are definitely behind him and when he started putting his daughter, Asia Argento, into every film it got a bit much for everyone (not to mention creepy considering she gets nude in most films). ARGENTO’S DRACULA is his version of the classic Bram Stoker in which he tries to bring vampires back to the days where they were sexy, flirtatious and mesmerizing. It doesn’t work but it is a good try and really harkens back to the 70s European films. That said, it is really poorly acted and the plot is razor thin. But it does have one thing going for it. One really, really, really good thing. Miriam Giovanelli. Who displays her talented assets to their fullest as a village daughter that gets taken by Dracula. She alone is worth the price of admission here. Beyond that, it isn’t scary. It barely has any of Argento’s famous style. Still, Argento fans will check it out and that’s fine but make sure you rent it.
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Article: ESCAPE PLAN Highlights this week in Blu-ray, DVD and VOD Releases