New in theaters this week from Union Pictures is the newest film from acclaimed writer/director Sally Potter about coming of age in turbulent 1960’s London England, “Ginger and Rosa”. The film starts an exclusive engagement at the Varsity cinemas this week and hits Vancouver and Montreal next week. So with its limited engagements in Canada, is Ginger and Rosa worth seeking out?
Ginger and Rosa
Written and Directed by Sally Potter
It’s London 1962. Two teenage girls Ginger (Fanning) and Rosa (Englert) are inseparable friends; in fact the two have been linked together since they day they were both born, but the growing threat of nuclear war casts a shadow over their lives. Both rebel against their mothers: Rosa’s single mum, Anoushka (more…)
New this week from Well Go USA is the French/Thai co-production that marks the feature film directorial debut of actor Jean-Marc Minéo, Bangkok Revenge. Originally released under the title “Rebirth”, the film features actor/stuntman John Foo, star of the 2010 live action “Tekken” film, as a one man destruction force fighting his way through Thailand. The big question is how does Bangkok Revenge stack up against the plethora of action films coming out of Thailand and other Asian countries?
Bangkok Revenge DVD Review
Starring: John Foo, Caroline Ducey and Michael Cohen
Written and Directed by Jean-Marc Minéo
A young boy left for dead by the assassins who killed his parents is taken under the wing of a martial-arts master and shaped into a lethal killing machine with an insatiable appetite for revenge. As a ten-year-old child, Manit (Foo) saw his parents murdered in cold blood. When the killers were finished, they put a gun to his head, and pulled the trigger. Incredibly, Manit survived, though the bullet in his brain left him devoid of all emotion. Subsequently adopted by a kindly martial-arts master, Manit trained tirelessly for the next 20 years, always knowing that the day would come when he would bring his parent’s killers to justice. When the time comes to embrace his destiny, Manit embarks on a violent quest for vengeance that brings the entire Bangkok underworld crumbling down. (more…)
New to DVD and Blu-ray from Fox Home Entertainment is the newest comedy from the director of “The Game Plan” and “She’s the Man” Andy Fickman, Parental Guidance. The film stars Billy Crystal and Bette Midler as grandparents put into action as babysitters for the grandkids they barely know and clashing with the parenting decisions and direction of their daughter and her husband. The film is aimed at same crowd who enjoyed the “Meet the Parents” series, but does it pack as much laughs as the first “Meet the Parents” had?
Parental Guidance Blu-ray
Written by Lisa Addario and Joe Syracuse
Directed by Andy Fickman
Old-school grandparents Artie (Crystal) and Diane (Midler) get more than they bargained for when they get stuck babysitting their type-A daughter Alice’s (Tomei) three overprotected kids. But things go from hectic to hysterical when Artie and Dianne realize the kids are running the house with newfangled technology, created by the family patriarch Phil (Scott), that they have no idea how to use . To make matter worse Artie has lost his decades old job in favor of a newer and younger replacement. But playing by his rules, which include sugary snacks, old fashioned games and tough love, Artie manages to outsmart the kids and he and Diane endear themselves to the children they long to spend more time with. (more…)
New on Blu-ray from Disney Home Entertainment is the Oscar wining biopic from Steven Spielberg about Abraham Lincoln’s fight to abolish slavery with the 13th amendment to the constitution while also trying to bring about then end of the long and very bloody civil war dividing the country, Lincoln. The film features an all-star cast both behind and in front of the camera that had writer Doris Kearns Goodwin on set as an adviser and the production using many real locations to replicate the events as factually as possible. So how does the historic epic translate to the small screen?
Starring: Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones, David Spader, David Strathairn, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Hal Holbrook, John Hawkes, Jackie Earle Hailey, Bruce McGill, Lee Pace, Tim Blake Nelson and Jared Harris
Written by Tony Kushner based on the novel by Doris Kearns Goodwin
Directed by Steven Spielberg
Lincoln (Day-Lewis) tarts as the Civil War continues to rage. Struggling with continuing carnage on the battlefield, Lincoln is fighting another great battle with many inside his own cabinet on the decision to emancipate the slaves. But the promise of an impending peace threatens the amendment from going to vote so Lincoln must make some tough decisions. His wife Mary (Field) is still grieving the loss of their son years before and fears her other ambitious son Robert’s (Gordon-Levitt) determination to enlist will cost him his life as well. The film follows Lincoln through to his ill-fated trip to the theater. (more…)
New in theaters across Canada this week from VVS Films is the tantalizing and titillating new film from “Kids” scribe Harmony Korine, the heavily buzzed about “Spring Breakers”. Starring a pair of former Disney child stars, a ‘Pretty Little Liar’ and Harmony’s own wife as bikini-clad bandits who desperately want to leave behind their humdrum college lives for sun, drugs and the allure of Spring Break. Korine has long searched for the right follow up to his landmark film “Kids” but has not quite achieved it yet. Will Spring Breakers prove to be it?
Written and Directed by Harmony Korine
Four sexy college girls, Faith (Gomez) Candy (Hudgens) Brit (Benson) and Cotty (Korine), plan to fund their spring break getaway by burglarizing a popular fast food shack. But that’s only the beginning. At a motel room rager, fun reaches its legal limit and the girls are arrested and taken to jail. Hungover and clad only in bikinis, the girls appear before a judge but are bailed out unexpectedly by Alien (Franco) An infamous local thug and rapper, Alien takes them under his wing and leads them on the wildest Spring Break trip in history. Rough on the outside but with a soft spot inside, Alien wins over the hearts of the young Spring Breakers, and leads them on a Spring Break they never could have imagined. (more…)
New to Blu-ray and DVD from Anchor Bay Entertainment is the based on true events horror thriller Shadow People. The film stars the current co-star of AMC’s smash television show The Walking Dead, Dallas Roberts, the film is perfectly timed to capitalize on the show’s third season final episodes. But does this horror/thriller pack the goods?
Shadow People Blu-ray
Written and Directed by Matthew Arnold
Shadow People is about a small town radio personality named Charlie Crowe (Roberts) who unravels a conspiracy about encounters with mysterious beings. These ‘Shadow People’ were the cause of hundreds of unexplained deaths. He encounters CDC Epidemic Intelligence Agent Sophie Lancombe (more…)
New to DVD and Blu-ray exclusively from Anchor Bay Entertainment Canada and Indiecan Entertainment is the newest addition to the found footage horror genre that takes into the halls of a rundown asylum that may house the spirits of the deceased with Grave Encounters 2. The first Grave Encounters came out of nowhere and became an improbable hit so the question remains that with an increased budget and backing can the sequel deliver as much as the original did?
Grave Encounters 2
Starring: Richard Harmon, Sean Rogerson, Leanne Lapp, Dylan Playfair, Stephanie Bennett and Howard Lai
Written by The Vicious Brothers
Directed by John Poliquin
In 2011 the found footage horror film Grave Encounters about a ghost hunting TV crew being haunted to their apparent deaths in an abandoned mental institute became an internet and festival sensation. In the sequel Grave Encounters 2 Alex (Harmon), (more…)