Outside of an appreciation for the freeze frame nature of the picturesque visuals, there’s little else to appreciate when it comes to Chan-wook Park’s English-language debut, Stoker. An infatuation with the look of Stoker causes the film to suffer greatly. The unnatural mise-en-scÃ¨ne is so precise, it allows no room to breathe, yielding empty characters who exhibit zero evidence of humanity leaving the viewer utterly detached.
Before Sunrise / Before Sunset
At only $7.99 if you don’t own Before Sunrise and Before Sunset you can’t pass this deal up. Yes, they may become available on Blu-ray soon, but at $7.99 is it really that much of an expense not to own two of the greatest romance films ever? Buy ’em both, watch ’em and head on out to check out Before Midnight and feel good all over.
Safety Last! (Criterion Collection)
I already wrote up my review of Criterion’s Blu-ray for Harold Lloyd‘s Safety Last! (read it here) so most of you should already know I highly recommend this title. This is a silent film right up there with the likes of Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin‘s best. Film lovers won’t regret the purchase.
Marketa Lazarova (Criterion Collection)
I also reviewed Criterion’s Blu-ray for Frantisek Vlacil’s Marketa Lazarova, which isn’t a title for everyone. This is a fantastic release for a very experimental and difficult film for anyone not used to digging deep for meaning and reason. Read my full review here for a greater explanation.
Ugh, sorry, I did not like Chan-wook Park’s Stoker in the least. How this thing has a “fresh” rating at RottenTomatoes is beyond me, but you can read my theatrical review if you please, but here’s my opening paragraph:
Jack the Giant Slayer
Here’s another relative dud that wasn’t a complete bust and will serve audiences better at home on their couch, but hardly one to write home about. You can read my full theatrical review here.
If this had been the feature directorial debut of someone in their mid-twenties or early-thirties it would be quite the achievement, but considering it’s Dustin Hoffman‘s directorial debut it comes across as a safe project, made during some downtime. It’s not a great film either way, just a milquetoast kind of feature that doesn’t move the dial either way.
21 & Over
The Last Exorcism Part II
I never saw it. The first one, in my opinion, was junk and they didn’t even offer up a screening for press before this second one was released so I never made the effort.
RopeofSillicon Box Office Oracle Laremy Legel, considers this one of the worst films he’s seen in several years. Reason enough for me to avoid it forever.