Sunday, July 19, 2009

Retroactive DVD Picks of the Week: 7/14/09

Hey all. Pardon my laziness. Waking up at 6:30 AM Monday through Thursday, and then working until 5 PM really does it to me. Because I wanted to keep the streak of DVD picks alive, I've decided to work a little retroactive magic here, just like the MLB teams do when placing players on the disabled list.

Mad Men: Season 2 [DVD][Blu-ray]

I've only seen the first episode of the first season of this show, but I do anticipate watching the rest after coming away impressed. So with that, I'll make note of the second season coming to DVD and Blu-ray. And that's all for that.

The Haunting in Connecticut [DVD][Blu-ray]

One of my surprise films of 2009 is The Haunting in Connecticut. It's not great, it's not bad but it most certainly is a serviceable supernatural horror/thriller film. There's enough interesting happenings in this haunting to keep both the average and hardcore fans interested in this film. It's not particularly scary, just mostly atmospheric and full of neat imagery. Going in with low to average standards for this film will net you with the greatest response. It has already been announced that the film will be given an unrelated sequel, most likely another one of the haunting stories this film was based on. From what I've heard, this "extended" cut really isn't all that extended, and still has the film playing as a PG-13 film, which is quite alright if you ask me. It got the job done. Check out my review from March for my full take on this film.


It's about time!!! One of the greatest horror films of this past decade is finally seeing release in America. And it's only eight months after the films copycat remake was released into US theaters!!!! Hurray! [REC] is one of the most impressive horror films for a few reasons. For one, it's actually pretty terrifying. Why? The directors perfectly executed the hand-held, first-person camera technique and coupled it with a claustrophobic and intense atmosphere, something many have tried and only done good at. Never great. But the team of Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza did great here. And there's a direct and immediate sequel coming out, which starts right where this film leaves off. Anyways, if you have seen Quarantine, be sure to keep in mind that this film came first, and that they ripped [REC] off shot-by-shot, concept-by-concept. And if you haven't seen either of these films, start with this one. Watch it with a group of friends. You will thank me. Oh but one last thing about this release. I despise the cover art. I guess it couldn't be all perfect.

For All Mankind [Criterion DVD][Criterion Blu-ray]

Oh, what's that? I'm going to finish off the 14th's releases with a Criterion Collection release? You bet your ass I am. And I don't even have much interest in this one. For All Mankind is a documentary about the Apollo mission, and quite possibly the most definitive one under two hours. I guess this is sort of real life 2001: A Space Odyssey in a way, and is surely a dazzling and awe-inspiring experience. You can check out a clip of the film, now reissued by Criterion on both DVD and Blu-ray, here.

What else comes out this week: The State: The Complete Series, Grey Gardens, Leverage: The First Season, The Towering Inferno [Blu-ray], 12.

What to stay away from: I'm going to go with this rubbish I've never even heard of. A Haunting: Twilight of Evil. It sounds like they just jammed together titles of popular films and passed it off as something like a horror film. After further investigation, the DVD cover says "As seen on Discovery Channel". Really? Because you make it seem like something I'd have seen on the Sci-Fi network, or Chiller.

That's all. Hopefully I am not too tired to check in on Tuesday for the release of Watchmen!

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