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    Five Star

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Dustin P. Anderson on September 4th, 2015

    Our story follows Primo as he leads the son of a fallen comrade, John, through the life of a Blood. John is trying to follow in the footsteps of his recently departed father by running “packages” for the gang. His mother tries to keep him on the law-abiding path, but John’s ties to the gang are deep. John soon figures out the burdens of this lifestyle and must make a choice on whether he will stay the course of his father, or adhere to the wishes of his mother. Primo’s words serve as both advice and caution as John makes this decision. Primo warns that there are no favorites in this life, only business.
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    Mad Max: Fury Road (Blu-ray 3D)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Jeremy Butler on September 3rd, 2015

    It is one of the most anticipated movies of the summer and another subject in the category of “can Tom Hardy do no wrong?” Mad Max: Fury Road is the reimagining of the iconic film that helped launch Mel Gibson’s career decades earlier. This is not new territory in Hollywood by any stretch of the imagination; remakes have happened so often in recent years that they have practically become their own genre. However, I would like to point out something that will hopefully set this film apart in the eyes of the audience: how often do you see a remake that is overseen by the creator of the original film that you know and love?
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    Low Down

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Paul O'Callaghan on September 3rd, 2015

    Low Down has a fantastic cast for a low-budget film including John Hawkes, Elle Fanning, Glenn Close, Flea, Taryn Manning, Tim Daly, Billy Drago, Rain Pheonix, Lena Headey, Peter Dinklage, and Burn Gorman (the last three are alumni of Game of Thrones, which couldn’t be farther in tone and content from this movie). It is the true life story of jazz pianist Joe Albany from a book by his daughter, Amy-Jo. The only thing that clearly marks the time period that the film takes place is a brief excerpt of the Watergate hearings in 1974 but has the feel of a time maybe a decade before. That is part of the beauty of a film like this. It is so subtly clued into detail.
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    Bessie (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on September 2nd, 2015

    You got the St. Louis blues, the Chicago blues, the gin house blues, the “my man done left me” blues…they all the same song, ain’t they?”

    By now, anyone who’s seen a musical biopic realizes these films also whistle a pretty similar-sounding tune. The bad news here is that Bessie is no exception, rushing from one familiar Troubled Artist Beat (hardscrabble childhood, rise to stardom, substance abuse, troubled marriage, etc.) to the next. The really good news is that this HBO biopic of “Empress of Blues” Bessie Smith is elevated by some truly powerhouse performances.
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    Walker Texas Ranger 4 Film Collection

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on September 1st, 2015

    There was a new cowboy in Dallas, and he wasn’t throwing touchdown passes. But Walker was almost gone before he could really get started. After just four episodes, the show’s production company suffered financial collapse, and the show was rescued at the last minute by CBS Productions, who would continue to run the show for its nearly decade-long run. For nine years Norris brought us the ultimate Texas Ranger in a formula cops-and-robbers show. The show often became a parody of itself but maintained a solid viewership throughout. Hell, Norris even sings the theme song.
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    The Originals: Season 2 (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on September 1st, 2015

    “Once upon a time, there was a majestic king, who lived with his noble brother in a colorful kingdom where music and art were celebrated. The king did not foresee having a child, but he lived in an enchanted land where all things were possible. In time, he was blessed with a beautiful baby daughter for whom he wished only peace and happiness. Still, the king had demons who pursued him.”

    If you’re a fan of The Vampire Diaries, you need no introduction to Klaus Mikaelson and his family of original vampires.
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    Hawaii Five-0: Season 5

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on September 1st, 2015

    “Book ’em Danno.”

    It’s been 30 years since we last heard that phrase. Still it persisted in the modern lexicon along with the term Five-0, which is still shouted in high-crime areas in cities all over the country whenever a police presence is felt closing in on the bad guys. Hawaii Five-0 ended in 1980. That’s when Tom Selleck took over the sets and production crew on Hawaii to work as Magnum P.I. until 1988 when it all closed down for good — or did it? Wouldn’t you know it, the show has been resurrected and become the hottest drama on television.
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    Nickelodeon Out of the Vault: Halloween

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Dustin P. Anderson on September 1st, 2015

    This DVD contains some of the scariest episodes of classic Nickelodeon animated TV shows. Hey Arnold! follows a young boy living in a city trying to deal with the day-to-day troubles an elementary-grade child would be dealing with. The Angry Beavers is about a sibling duo of beavers; the cool, sophisticated Norbert and his hyperactive brother Daggit. Ahhh! Real Monsters tells us the story of monsters going through “Scare School” (this series came way before Monsters University) under the strict thumb of The Grumble.
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    Felt

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Dan Holland on August 31st, 2015

    Sometimes films can move at a rather slow pace, but have a tremendous payoff. In many cases, this pacing pattern is identified by cinephiles as a “slow burn.” How slow the “burn” actually is depends solely on the director’s choice; some can be a little too slow for the amount of “burn” it provides at the film’s climax. Felt had no such problem with either of these concepts. The film is slow, yes, but its pacing fits so well with the devolving psyche (the “burn”) of the main character.
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    Lost After Dark (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on August 31st, 2015

    And you thought the ’80s were dead.”

    The tongue-in-cheek tagline for this film is the first of many signs that this throwback slasher flick doesn’t take itself too seriously. I’ve always thought the best parodies are the ones that show genuine affection, rather than superiority, toward the genre they’re mocking. Lost After Dark sometimes wobbles as it walks the tricky tightrope between homage and legit horror movie, but there’s no doubt the filmmakers enjoyed their many sleepless nights with the likes of Michael Myers, Jason Vorhees, Leatherface, and more.
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    Big Game

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Jeremy Butler on August 31st, 2015

    What is the world coming to when the President is forced to rely on a preteen kid as his only means of protection? Or at least that is what I’d be wondering if I was Samuel L. Jackson in Big Game. In fact, if I was him, I’d probably fire my entire staff after this adventure. Crash-landed in Finland, the President finds himself alone and being hunted with his only ally being a young kid who is undertaking a traditional rite of passage. I have to say, despite the high stakes, the movie managed to keep things somewhat lighthearted, thereby allowing it to appeal to larger audience. Movie watchers are about to see SLJ in a completely different role as the President instead of his usual action-packed roles.
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    Run Hide Die

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Dustin P. Anderson on August 31st, 2015

    Honoring the memory of her husband, Addison Davenport sets off to a cabin in the woods with her four friends on the anniversary of his death. The friends go on their road trip, and once at their destination proceed to party. Little do these women know that they are not alone. A killer makes their presence known and starts torturing the girls. This could have been a great homage to classic eighties horror/slasher movies, but the creator couldn’t make a lot of the dialog coherent, nor could he make a meaningful plot. The dialog ranges from all the bad things we hated about the eighties horror scene, to all of the dialog I have grown to hate from newer horror films. It takes the “vulgarity for the sake of being vulgar” shtick from such classics as Friday the Thirteenth and Halloween.
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    Camilla Dickinson

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Dustin P. Anderson on August 31st, 2015

    Our story follows Camilla, a young girl living with her family and going to school in Manhattan during the year 1948. Her family is very wealthy and wants for little, but they are experiencing a difficult time in their life right now. Camilla’s mother is having an affair with a French man due to her husband being distant and supposedly uncaring. While going through this difficult time, Camilla is caught in the middle and unsure of what to do. Should she say something to her father or be faithful to her mother? Her friend Louisa tries to help her through this troubling time, but Louisa has troubles of her own.
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    Panic 5 Bravo

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Deborah Bostock-Kelley on August 31st, 2015

    I consider myself an optimist, so even when something looks bad, I try to look for the good. I searched for 84 long, painful minutes to look for good in Panic 5 Bravo. It’s a tale of four paramedics in an ambulance at the edge of the US/Mexican border that I, sadly, don’t ever give a dang about. There’s Richard, a curmudgeon days away from retiring; Josh, the rich-boy newbie; Bobby, the good-oops no bad- girl, and Alex, the eye-candy –a golden-retriever loving Mexican-American who is getting ready to propose to his girlfriend. Kuno Becker (Alex) also wrote, directed, and starred in the film.
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    The Walking Dead: Season 5 (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on August 28th, 2015

    So what will you be doing when the zombie apocalypse finally hits? Will you be fighting endlessly to survive? Will you be hoarding food and supplies? Will you be seeking out other survivors and band together? Maybe you’ll just hole up somewhere and try and wait it out. Me? I’m going to find a solid generator, a high-definition television, an Oppo Blu-ray player, and all of The Walking Dead season sets I can get my hands on. You could consider it survival training, but I’m going to binge-watch one of the most unique shows in television history.
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    5 to 7

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Jeremy Butler on August 28th, 2015

    “Life is a collection of moments. The idea is to have as many good ones as you can.”

    Anton Yelchin’s reaction to the discovery of the existence of an actual block of time carved out for illicit affairs is probably one of the most comical moments of the film. To further explain, Yelchin’s character has a chance meeting with a beautiful older woman and after a few more scheduled meetings discovers that she is in fact married. The funny thing is the nonchalant way in which she reacts to the revelation, commenting that she told him that she was only available during the hours of 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
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    Elementary: Season 3

    Posted in Disc Reviews by William O'Donnell on August 28th, 2015

    In 1887, readers of the popular periodical Beeton’s Christmas Annual were to receive quite a special treat. There wasn’t much fanfare or hype to the event. Inside the pages of the magazine was a story called A Study In Scarlet. It was a detective story, perhaps like many published before, except for the detective himself, a certain Mr. Sherlock Holmes. Together with his faithful companion and chronicler Dr. Watson, Holmes would win the hearts of those holiday readers. It might have been an ordinary day, but the world was about to change. Sherlock Holmes would become the most famous detective in the world.
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    Welcome to New York (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on August 27th, 2015

    “This film was inspired by a court case, the public stages of which have been filmed, broadcast, reported and commented on throughout the media worldwide. Nonetheless, the characters portrayed in the film and all sequences depicting their private lives remain entirely fictional.”

    The disclaimer that appears at the top of Welcome to New York is only the first indication that this flawed, unflinching drama — based on the Dominique Strauss-Kahn affair — seeks to blur the line between fact and fiction.
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    Where Hope Grows (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on August 27th, 2015

    I guess I could use some of that magical happiness you always seem to have.”

    David DeSanctis, the novice performer with Down syndrome making his feature film debut here, is easily the best thing about Where Hope Grows. Both the actor and the character he plays radiate genuine warmth and irrepressible positivity. Those qualities help boost this well-meaning redemption drama, which suffers from one too many storylines and an unintentionally appalling ending.
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    Rookie Blue: Season 5

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on August 25th, 2015

    The premise itself is relatively simple and requires no real past knowledge to get on board. Unit 15 is the elite unit of an unnamed Canadian metropolitan police force. The unit is led by Staff Sergeant Oliver Shaw (Gordon). Each episode begins with his roll call. Apparently in Canada it’s called parade. He does the usual job of giving out riding partners and assignments and providing the general “hot” information for the shift turn-out. The show focuses on a group of rookie cops assigned here. This is where it gets tricky.
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    Criminal Minds: Season 10

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on August 25th, 2015

    What can I say about Criminal Minds that hasn’t been said in the last 10 years? It’s the little show that could. I’ve been a fan since the first episode when Mandy Patinkin was the show’s leader. His departure left the show with a hole it was swift to fill, and I have to say it hasn’t missed a beat since. The rest of the cast has been solid for most of that decade, and they’ve evolved into one of the best teams on television. Because of this show we all learned what an unsub was and have become pretty aware of the things that go on in a killer’s mind. It was the perfect sister show to CSI for years on Thursday nights. CSI dealt with the physical evidence, while Criminal Minds dealt with the mind. What a combination.
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    Falling Star

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Dan Holland on August 25th, 2015

    Perhaps if I knew a little bit more about Amadeo I prior to going into this film, I would have enjoyed it a little bit more. Luis Miñarro’s Stella Cadente, or Falling Star, focuses on the short-lived reign of Amedeo I as the King of Spain. Originally hailing from Italy, Amadeo was elected King of Spain in 1871. Upon his election, his primary backer was assassinated, leaving the foreign king alone to deal with the restlessness of Spain’s government. Falling Star sets up this sequence of events well enough to follow, but soon thereafter dwindles into a slow-paced fictionalization of the difficulties that faced Amadeo I.
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    Once Upon a Time: Season 4 (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on August 25th, 2015

    “There have been many authors throughout time. It’s a job, not a person… Tasked with the great responsibility to record. To witness the greatest stories of all time and record them for posterity. The job has gone back eons from the man who watched the shadows dance across cave walls and developed an entire philosophy to playwrights who tell tales in poetry to a man named Walt.”

    OK, so you’ve tapped into almost every Disney classic story and quite a few that weren’t Disney. The television show is still going strong. What are you going to do next?
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    Lego DC Comics Superheroes: Justice League — Attack of the Legion of Doom! (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on August 25th, 2015

    DC Comics buffs have been obsessively analyzing every frame of the latest Batman v. Superman trailer for clues that nod to a live-action appearance by their favorite hero. But for fans of Lego’s “DC Comics Superheroes” brand — which includes various movies, TV shows and videogames — the idea of a superpowered team-up is old hat. In fact, Lego is so far ahead of the curve that its newest offering — Attack of the Legion of Doom! — explores what happens when the bad guys form their own all-star team.
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    Grey’s Anatomy: Season 11

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on August 25th, 2015

    “Trauma is messy.”

    So begins life at Grey-Slone Memorial Hospital without Dr. Wang, and for the show Grey’s Anatomy, the loss of Sandra Oh. But there won’t be time to dwell on that loss as the story shifts to the departure of another of the show’s most popular characters and actors. Patrick Dempsey spent more than a decade as the show’s McDreamy, one of the more compelling talents in the cast. It’s another season, and mixed amid the medical emergencies, struggling relationships, and tragic events, it’s time to say goodbye once again.
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