Dec 292015
 

“True Detective”: The Complete Second Season is definitely a step down from its predecessor, however, for all of its faults from a needlessly complicated storyline, substandard writing and too many characters (main ones anyway), I still found this season fairly entertaining due to the performances by Colin Farrell, Rachel McAdams and yes, even Vince Vaughn.

 

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Dec 292015
 

Hitman: Agent 47 might not be a horrible movie experience but it certainly much to be desired with a poor casting choice of Rupert Friend who seems too refined for the role while relative newcomer Hannah Ware came off fairly well. This is the type of film, despite an R-rating, destined to air on FX or FXX with some not-so-creative editing and certainly is not worth a purchase let along a rental.

 

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Dec 272015
 

Pan had some of the right ingredients between a good and capable director and respectable cast but between some odd choices with the soundtrack, mainly a rendition of “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, and an utterly joyless film which is surprising for a movie about Peter Pan, it makes for a soulless and forgettable flick.

 

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Dec 262015
 

It’s understandable why fans of the novels hate The Scorch Trials adaptation but as someone who isn’t attached to the books in any way, I found it acceptable and entertaining enough. Sure, the film does have its problems especially with the pacing and bloated story taking it over the two hour mark, yet at the same time I don’t regret seeing it.

 

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Dec 252015
 

What started off as an interesting story about the Milgram Experiment turned into a bit of a bore of film in the second half, though Peter Sarsgaard does give a fine performance and director Michael Almereyda certainly didn’t go the conventional route in the story and filmmaking style, so Experimenter does at least stand out in that regard.

 

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Dec 242015
 

Mysterious Island is a fun, light-hearted, fantasy flick highlighted by Ray Haryhausen’s incredible effects work combined with Bernard Herrmann’s score. The Blu-ray released under the Twilight Time line offers some decent features headlined by an extensive audio commentary, and good video/audio transfers.

 

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Dec 222015
 

There’s really no reason for The Transporter Refueled to exist, let alone one without Jason Statham starring. The writing is bad, the action sequences weren’t well directed and came across more as a commercial for Audi, and the performance from Ed Skrein does not make for a fun or kick ass action hero.

 

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Dec 202015
 

12 Rounds 3: Lockdown is just another bad direct-to-video flick but worse yet, it’s not even a fun bad, just plain bad. The acting is wooden especially on the part of Dean Ambrose who shows no charisma to play the lead and the fight scenes were poorly choreographed. The Blu-ray is rather basic with two thin featurettes, so-so video and adequate audio transfers.

 

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Dec 202015
 

It’s not hard to see why Heist had a very limited theater run before being released to DTV obscurity in spite of a nice cast between Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Robert De Niro. But thanks to a bad script, with far too many contrivances to ignore, this is the type of movie easily forgotten within a day and thrown in with the rest of the subpar flicks.

 

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Dec 192015
 

Pawn Sacrifice isn’t one of Zwick’s best movies, which for me is still The Last Samurai, but it’s still an adequate drama with strong performances by Tobey Maguire and Michael Stuhlbarg, the latter of whom deserves some award recognition. The Blu-ray release offers good video and audio transfers but falls far short in the bonus material department.

 

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Dec 192015
 

“Game of Thrones”: The Complete Second Season is another solid set. The show is still strong with powerful performances and impressive production design and this Steelbook re-release has some great bonus material to go along with incredible video and audio transfers, the latter getting upgraded to the new Atmos track.

 

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Dec 162015
 

Mississippi Grind is a well meaning and generally finely acted drama but the screenplay probably could’ve used a little more work in fleshing out the friendship between its two main characters, though to be fair, the acting by both Mendelsohn and Reynolds does at least make this watchable.

 

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Dec 162015
 

“Game of Thrones”: The Complete First Season starts off strong and continues to its brutal season finale with brilliant performances from its vast cast from beginning to end along with award-winning production and costume designs. This new Limited Edition Steelbook release is more or less the same as the previous releases but comes with an upgraded Dolby Atmos soundtrack.

 

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Dec 152015
 

The Perfect Guy is a forgettable yet still watchable suspense thriller with fine performances from Sanaa Lathan and Morris Chestnut while Michael Ealy is quite as effective outside of being a creep. That said, it is a plot seen in numerous number of Lifetime Original Movies just with better production values and talent.

 

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Dec 112015
 

At First Sight is by no means a great romantic drama but Val Kilmer and Mira Sorvino make for a charismatic couple though the pacing is a bit off and follows the generic formula; that said, it’s at least watchable. The Blu-ray released by Olive is basic with only a trailer but good video and audio transfers.

 

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