• Forum
  • Archive for the ‘Anchor Bay’ Category

    Survivor’s Remorse: The Complete First Season

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on June 15th, 2015

    People you knew — people you forgot you knew — all ready to spend your money. And we got to be careful. We got to be smart.”

    We look at professional athletes who’ve hit the genetic jackpot and make unseemly amounts of money, and we assume that they’ll be financially set for the rest of their lives. Survivor’s Remorse, a Starz sitcom that follows a young basketball star who’s just signed his first big-money deal, gives us a frequently funny, consistently crass glimpse into why that isn’t necessarily the case.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Rectify: The Complete Second Season

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on June 9th, 2015

    “You look at life like it’s a burden. Life is a gift.”

    The best thing about Rectify — SundanceTV’s excellent, thoughtful slow-burn of a Southern drama — is that it gives equal weight to each of those viewpoints. Daniel Holden has spent more time as death row inmate than he has as a free man. As an 18 year old, he was convicted of the rape and murder of a teenage girl and spent the next 19 years in prison awaiting his execution. Daniel was suddenly freed after DNA evidence vacated his sentence, and season 1 showed him struggling mightily to adapt to life on the outside. (It also showed the outside world struggling mightily to adapt to him.)
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Halt and Catch Fire (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on May 7th, 2015

    “An early computer command that sent the machine into a race condition, forcing all instructions to compete for superiority at once. Control of the computer could not be regained.”

    That command? It’s Halt And Catch Fire. Television is very much like that. So many shows out there are competing for your attention. Even on the same network there’s often competition for the resources of the studios and the sponsors who provide the paydays. Now AMC has added another original series to compete for your attention…and precious time. You guessed it. Halt And Catch Fire. Does it work? Let’s find out. 
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Echoes (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on April 20th, 2015

    Imagine the horror of being asleep and then suddenly you wake up, paralyzed.  Your eyes flutter frantically about as you struggle to move, but nothing will budge.  From the corner of your eye you see movement.  You’re not alone, and the person who is in the room with you is ready to kill you. This is the hook Echoes attempts to use to suck the viewers in.  As a psychological thriller about sleep paralysis, it’s unfortunate that the only suspense the film manages to deliver on is just when the film will finally come to its painfully boring conclusion.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    The Missing (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on April 14th, 2015

    The longest-running crime dramas tend to be “case of the week” mysteries where the perp is comfortably caught within the hour. It’s a formula for sure, but it’s one that’s easy to replicate and works quite well if you have the right talent and personalities involved. In reality, of course, there are many cases when the crook isn’t captured before the end credits…or ever. The accompanying anger and uncertainty is much trickier (and messier) to convey dramatically. The Missing — a limited series from England that aired on Starz — isn’t the first show to tackle that territory, but it’s certainly a compelling recent example.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    L.A. Apocalypse

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

    The recent earthquakes in Los Angeles: facts of life or foreshadowing the big one?”

    I’m not saying the makers of L.A. Apocalypse — a SyFy-level TV movie centered on catastrophic earthquakes in California — timed the release of their low-budget action flick so it premiered well ahead of San Andreas, the would-be summer blockbuster starring Dwayne Johnson about catastrophic earthquakes in California. It’s just funny how things often work out that way. L.A. Apocalypse doesn’t have The Rock (or anyone you’ve likely heard of) and is working with a very small fraction of San Andreas‘ budget. The result is as underwhelming as you’d expect.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    The Red Road: The Complete First Season

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on March 9th, 2015

    Even though one of the main characters in The Red Road is a police officer, the show’s six-episode first season plays less like your typical cop drama and more like an extended profile of two strained communities. There’s the fictional town of Walpole, N.J. and the Lenape tribe that lives in the neighboring Ramapo Mountains. While the show certainly touches on the tension between the two communities, too much time here is devoted to multi-generational family drama that we’ve seen before. In other words, the show too often neglects the things that make it unique.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Bad Turn Worse

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on January 15th, 2015

    There are 32 ways to tell a story, but there’s only ever one plot…that things are not what they seem.”

    Early on in Bad Turn Worse, a character mentions this maxim credited to writer Jim Thompson (“The Grifters”, “The Killer Inside Me”) apropos of almost nothing. It’s kind of a clunky, inauthentic interjection, but the message is clear and crafty: directors Simon and Zeke Hawkins know they’re not re-inventing the wheel in terms of plot, so where they really hope to grab your attention is in how they present their stylish, well-acted feature film debut.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    The Dead 2: India (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on September 22nd, 2014

    Sibling filmmakers Howard J. and Jonathan Ford seem to be huge believers in the “Location, location, location” real estate adage. The duo — collectively known as The Ford Brothers — previously made The Dead, which was billed as “the first zombie road movie set against the spectacular scenery of Africa.” I actually wasn’t a fan of that flick, but saw enough technical skill and enough potential in the concept to make me curious about a follow-up. With The Dead 2: India, the Ford Brothers have once again transplanted old-fashioned zombie thrills to an exotic, under-explored location. Only this time, they brought a story and more engaging performers along for the trip.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Born to Race: Fast Track (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on September 9th, 2014

    Drag racing is for fast cars. Road racing…that’s for fast drivers.”

    I imagine that distinction — along with one character scolding another for pulling a “Vin Diesel stunt” — is meant to set this straight-to-DVD racing drama apart from the Fast & Furious franchise. That separation is an interesting choice for a couple of reasons. On one hand, I assume it’s been easier to finance any car-centric flick ever since a certain high-octane film series proved there’s an audience for the genre. Then again, the increasingly staggering success of the Fast movies seems to be directly proportional to how ludicrous they’ve become.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    14 Blades (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on September 3rd, 2014

    Right now in the martial arts world I don’t believe there is a bigger star than Donnie Yen.  From his work in Iron Monkey to his modern classic Ip Man, Yen shows he is nearly an unstoppable force in the martial arts world, and when his name is involved with a project, you should be ready for a spectacle.  His fight choreography is stunning to say the least, and despite the genre of film, he’s able to keep his fight scenes grounded in reality.  Now teamed with director Daniel Lee who brought us Black Mask, 14 Blades is on first glance the kind of movie martial arts fans should get excited about.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    The Walking Dead: Season 4 (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on August 29th, 2014

    The first thing you should know about The Walking Dead is that it’s unlike any television series you have ever seen before. The images here are intense, and the crew has been given a blank check to create this vision without the burden of censors looking over their shoulders. There are plenty of blood-and-gore effects that rival any of the Hollywood zombie films you’ve seen in the last few years. The makeup effects are handled by the very capable hands of KNB and supervised personally by Greg Nicotero (the N from KNB).
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    The Possession of Michael King (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on August 27th, 2014

    Here is a film that delves into a subject not many people care to openly discuss but poses a question that everyone who’s lost someone they love can relate to.  When prayer and faith don’t seem to deliver the answers you want for those that need closure that therapy can’t seem to provide, where does one turn?  It’s this hopeless feeling of loss that seems to be what attracts Michael King (Shane Johnson) to investigate the possibility of the supernatural.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    The Birthday Boys: The Complete First Season

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on August 7th, 2014

    It seems to me, if your ultimate goal is to get on television, there’s never been a better time to be a sketch comedian. Thanks to sites like YouTube — which thrive on the sort of bite-size videos that line up nicely with the rhythms of sketch comedy — funny folks can hone their craft online while building a big enough fan base to maybe compel a network to offer them a show. Comedy Central is the most obvious basic cable landing spot, but IFC has emerged in recent years as a haven for offbeat humor. That includes The Birthday Boys, which is characteristically uneven, but boasts an impeccable TV sketch comedy pedigree.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Comedy Bang! Bang! The Complete Second Season

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on June 27th, 2014

    I like the fact that there’s no desk. I like the fact that he’s not wearing a suit and tie. And I like the fact that there’s not some over-hyped studio audience being prompted to laugh at topical jokes that we’re all gonna forget about in the next few days.”

    For its second season, IFC’s Comedy Bang! Bang! got bigger and bolder in the way it manically skewered decades of talk show and pop culture conventions. Not surprisingly, the show also got even weirder.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    13 Sins (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on June 23rd, 2014

    “Congratulations! You have been selected to take part in a once-in-a-lifetime game show. Of a long list of candidates in financial need, you have been chosen to compete for a fantastic cash prize.”

    Elliot Brindle (Webber) is having a tough patch in life. He wants to marry the woman who is about to have their baby, but his financial situation isn’t going to support a new family.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    In the Blood (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on June 4th, 2014

    Following in the footsteps of Taken Gina Carano (Haywire) goes on a revenge rampage in order to discover what has happened to her injured and missing husband in a foreign land.  It’s not the most original jumping off point for a revenge film, but as is the case with most revenge films, the motivation is usually always the same, but it’s the journey to the fulfillment of their blood-lust that keeps us in our seats.  Coming off of the latest installment in the Fast and the Furious series, Carano has started to make a name for herself ever since she emerged in Steven Soderbergh’s action/thriller Haywire.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Generation Iron

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on May 15th, 2014

    Bodybuilders present a series of fascinating contradictions. They objectively embody the ideal physical form, but there are also people who can’t even stand looking at them. They’re in tip-top shape, but instead of running, jumping or hitting each other, their competitions involve…posing. Pumping Iron, the 1977 documentary that turned Arnold Schwarzenegger and Lou Ferrigno into stars, was the first film to shine a light on the world of bodybuilding. Generation Iron stylishly and thoughtfully explores how the sport — and its participants — have grown immensely in the ensuing decades despite remaining a somewhat peculiar part of popular culture.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Death Do Us Part

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on April 21st, 2014

    “Bad things happen in the woods, especially to pretty girls like you.”

    Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: a smallish group of friends head to a remote location for what they think will be a sex-and-booze-fueled romp. Instead, they find themselves getting picked off by a mysterious killer. If you’ve ever seen a slasher movie, you’re painfully familiar with this scenario. Thankfully, it seems like the people who made the low-budget Death Do Us Part are also well-acquainted with the way this sort of movie is supposed to work. And they’ve decided to have some fun with it.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    At Middleton (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on April 2nd, 2014

    “Sometimes a day can be an eternity.”

    It’s hard to tell a convincing love story, period. It’s even harder to tell a convincing love story when we’re supposed to believe the two characters fall for each other within the space of a single day. The good news is At Middleton somewhat manages to pull this off in a little over an hour. The bad news is the film is actually 1 hour and 40 minutes long.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Return to Nuke ‘Em High 1, Vol. 1 (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on March 28th, 2014

    When you get a film from Troma to watch, you have to view it differently than you would view just about any other film.  After all, Troma is the VHS and DVD equivalent to the days of Roger Corman and the B-movie fanfare he could travel from one Cineplex to the next.  Troma founder Lloyd Kaufman has been writing and directing B-cinema schlock for 40 years and has managed to make money off it, so for those naysayers out there, keep in mind he still is responsible for The Toxic Avenger as well as Tromeo & Juliet.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    In Fear (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on March 11th, 2014

    When you are first getting into a relationship those first few weeks can be pretty awkward at times as the two of you get to know one another.  The decision to go on a road trip early on in a relationship is simply one of those gambles that can go either way, but if the trip goes well, then of course the future of this budding romance is all the more promising.  In Fear follows a couple that bravely decides to take a road trip together so they can see a concert; unfortunately for them, it’s the road trip from hell.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Battle of the Damned (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on February 19th, 2014

    “Zombies…killer robots…nice town you got here.”

    If nothing else, filmmaker Christopher Hatton definitely thought outside the box in his attempt to spice up the lumbering zombie genre. The random appearance of killer robots about halfway through the film is such an out-of-leftfield move — assuming you started watching this movie without looking at its Blu-ray cover (and, no…Dolph Lundgren is *not* one of the robots) — that I actually found it to be inspired. It’s a good thing too because the rest of Battle of the Damned is essentially a low-budget, paint splatter-by-numbers survival flick.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    Scorned (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on February 6th, 2014

    Don’t try to figure this out…I’m just a crazy, horny bitch.”

    This column strongly opposes cheating on your significant other. But if you absolutely can’t help yourself, you’ve got to be smarter about it than the numbskull played by Billy Zane in this film. In Scorned — a junky, over-the-top cross between Fatal Attraction and Misery — his girlfriend is an admitted manic-depressive who regularly takes as much medication as she can stuff in her purse. So what exactly did this dolt think would happen when she found out that he was sleeping with her best friend?
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)

    The White Queen (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on February 4th, 2014

    “I’m match for any man.”

    The idea that “behind every great man, there’s a great woman rolling her eyes” far predates its adoption as a feminist slogan in the middle of the previous century. The White Queen — a sumptuous, rushed combination of Game of Thrones-style high-stakes scheming and Tudors-style regal bodice ripping — uses Britain’s late medieval history as a jumping off point for pushing a number of notable women to the forefront.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    CommentComments (0)
    CSS Template by RamblingSoul | Tomodachi theme by Theme Lab